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Monday, October 16, 2017

Let's Talk About Mental Health, Shall We?

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It is the month of October and since 1949, October has been observed across the United States as a month for mental health awareness, by means of which millions of people are reached through campaigns and initiatives to create awareness regarding mental health concerns. The importance of good mental health can not be under estimated, yet there are many people out there still who do not even acknowledge this as an issue to begin with. For many people, mental health issues are non issues, some degrade it to the point of it being a figment of one's imagination. That is an unfortunate reality in a country like Pakistan as well, where generally all health related issues are put on the back foot and not even given a fraction of the due attention they deserve.

I am just going to simply talk about mental health right now, nothing else. I am going to keep this blog, plain and simple. I am going to say it again and again, Mental health issues are a reality, they are a God Damn reality, and they effect everyone. If you are not directly effected, you are indirectly effected because some one u know might be struggling with good mental health. The battle for good mental health is a life long battle.

The absence of good mental health can have negative effects on our life, they can effect our judgment, our ability to make decisions, our ability to be rational, it can lower our ability to confront or show resistance towards adversity.  Absence of good mental health can disrupt our very ability to live our day to day lives. That is how important good mental health is. I am saying it again, it is a reality, get used to it.

My experience of living in Pakistan as an adult has taught me that not only are people very apathetic towards mental health issues, but people actively contribute towards the decline of good mental health because of their sheer apathy not just towards the lives of other people, but also due to complete disregard for issues concerning good mental health.

A visit to  Karachi University's Institute of clinical psychology will prove to u, how many people, young and old, man, woman and child, suffer from mental health issues. Due to the stigma attached to talking about mental health in our society (I am guessing its like this in many parts of the world) people who come in seeking help for their mental health issues do so with a certain degree of reservation.  I have witnessed it with my my own eyes, those visiting the institute where dozens of mental health professionals tirelessly make efforts to help others, have a sense of fear and stigma with themselves that they have had to  take the initiative to come to such a place. The only anomaly u see there is the abundance of  hesitance among those visiting, but like you and I, their normal every day people, who are just seeking to make their lives better.

I am going to repeat this again, mental health issues are real issues, get used to it already. My request to any one reading this, take some time out and think about it, contemplate, reflect and what not regarding the reality of mental health. Keep an eye out on people around you, some  one around you could be suffering from poor mental health for a variety of reasons, the signs might not be too obvious and people might be reluctant to talk about it. Mental health is a reality and people right in front of you could be suffering from it. A lot of people develop mental health reasons due to personal battles, traumas, or loss and grief. Someone u know could have lost a loved one, or could have witnessed some thing traumatic, or they could have been bullied or just not been sleeping well for whatever xyz reason. Something or the other could have caused damages to their mental health. Most people suffer in silence, do not ignore mental health issues, do not ever tell people that mental health issues are a figment of their imagination, do not ever tell people that they are making excuses or evading responsibilities. We all have our limitations, there are things we can do, and there are things we can not. Sure its true what they say life truly begins when we wander outside of our comfort zone, but if human beings are pushed too much outside of their comfort zone, the consequences of that could be very damaging and have life long effects.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Kindness needs a Reincarnation!

Okay people listen up, gear up! Yes I am talking to you, the person reading this blog, i wont lie, I really do hope there are a lot of people reading this. So people as you all know Ramzan is coming, or Ramadan as some of you like to call it. It is coming, in the middle of this brutal OMG you are killing me kind of summer, and very soon you will be bombed with everything Religious or Ramadan/Ramzan themed. For the faithful, fasting followed by the optional Tarawee Salah, for the not so faithful and devout, being forced to have your meals behind closed doors, keeping quite about whether you are fasting or not, and try to not  stand out for whatever XYZ reason. Yet both of you, yes both of you, a very large number of both of you are lacking in Kindness. Yes, I said it, among both of you, kindness is an almost extinct variable.

 Heads up, my blog will reek off a little bit of bias towards the visibly religious lot in particular, there is a reason behind this. I won't get into details, but what I will mention is that you visibly religious lot, certainly raise the bar of behavioral expectations that others may have off you and your new found piousness and fondness for spirituality, when that is really lacking, it adds to anger, frustration, anxiety along with severe disappointments. Then again you would blame us for having high expectations to begin, this is where i say cut the crap, stop making excuses, and stop hiding behind your religious attire u choose to to wear at your own free will. This is about kindness, kindness does not need an excuse.

Kindness is almost dead, its more extinct than the Dodo, sometimes I actually begin to wonder if we as a species have evolved properly, are we yet to get to the desired level of evolution or have we gone back a stage in the 21st century. Kindness needs a revival, it needs a reincarnation. The challenge I would like to throw both religious Muslims that will be fasting in this holy month as well as the non religious who would be continuing normal life behind closed doors, is to be kind to people around you over the next 30 days. Do you think you both can last a month without being unkind.

First of all let me make it clear, u may think you are avoiding being unkind to the other person, absence of deliberate cruelty or intentionally being mean is not being kind, but it is also a very damaging form of unkindness. Let me give u all an example to elaborate a little bit, lets say, you all need a small favour out of someone, or you want something done by someone, who u usually would not consider as someone who merits your time or maybe a lesser being owing the image u have in your head for whatever XYZ reason, ask nicely, ask in a kind manner, most people will still be accommodating even if they know their being used, least u can do is ask kindly, A little bit of kindness can go a long long way in making or shaping someone's life, you do not even have to do it beyond basic politeness and very basic courtesy, while a little bit of unkindness and cocky rude attitude can badly break some one. Most of us Millennials, be it the early lot that was born in the 80s or the later late born 90s and beyond, we are all living serious pressure cooker lives, though we broadcast a lot of shit on social media, there is a lot of things we can not share, some very personal stuff, it might be related to one's job, one's partner, one's family, one's health, the list is endless, so try and be Kind, it really does not take a lot of effort.

To make a stronger point, I will share an example from my own life. One of the months of 2016, I was fresh out of a broken relationship, was a borderline mess, took me a month or 2 to get over it and move on, but I decided to start the process of moving on within 24-48 hours. About a week after the unexpected demise of that I had a wedding to attend of someone I knew from childhood, at the proceeded with my usual Social media activity, those who know me, my usual wedding photos, including my signature wedding selfies of the crowd acting all natural in the back ground. One of the ladies who was not by design in the wedding photographs but purely because she was in the back ground, very rudely and obnoxiously in a very inappropriate like she owns me demanded I take down all evidence, absolutely all evidence of the wedding from my Timeline. Her Arguments as to why ''I know too many people, some one or the other will ask her how the wedding was'', she further added fuel to my inner rage by claiming I am ruining the wedding for the bride and the groom since they were selective in their guest list. If people see the picture, they will ask Qs over why they werent invited (all assumptions). The mental frame of mind I was in, I could have been a real mean person that point, I decided I needed to take a stand for myself without being unkind, so out of pure defiance, I uploaded one group pic intentionally and that on Instagram where the lady isnt one of my followers, not proud of that moment, but had to be done. I got to hear some foul language and swear words from that lady for daring to do something without permission, but at this point I do not care.

Anyways that's not the point of this, the point of this, be bloody kind to people around you, you do not know what their going through. If everyone of us makes a very tiny effort even to be kind and not at all be unkind to our fellow human beings, it can set off a small chain reaction, and the immediate world around us can be a far nicer place. A slightly nicer world, calmer nerves, better concentration at work, we can all sleep better, and best of all we will not be unnecessarily snapping at other people, who in turn will snap at others. So Give it a thought, my 30 day challenge to You, Be Kind Daily for 30 days, and see the difference you make.

If old TV shows and old movies can get reincarnated, why not kindness, so lets give it to a try..

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Karachi, You are Killing me! (Not my original title)

Okay, so Karachi is killing me and I did get the inspirational title from Saba Imtiaz's book of the same name. But since I was going to share this article on social media, Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, blah blah blah, I did not want to go with the original title I had in mind to avoid an excessive backlash, but I will use it. here

Karachi Ki Ladies, You Are Killing me! 

So yes, this was the core agenda, my original title, what I really had in mind, ladies of Karachi, you really really are killing me, as well as quite a few other men out there. I am serious, I am not even kidding, call it, sexist, misogynistic blah blah whatever you want, but it is true, you ladies are killing me and a lot of other guys out there. I am also pretty certain, none of you are even remotely aware of how you are doing it. Pause, put this blog away for like about 60 seconds and think, how are we killing men out there? 60 seconds later, if you have an answer in your mind, drop it in the comments, I would love to embrace my sisters out there, who can relate to what I have in mind and what I am about to say. None of you are alike, some of you are epic fantastic, while some of you put humanity to shame.

That's right I said it, some of you put humanity to shame! Shame on You! Okay so let me not waste further time in confusing any of the readers over here, dudes probably have an idea what I am talking about, but some might still be confused, we millennials are a confused generation. Anyways you ladies epic suck in how you ladies treat guys in this day and age. There I said it, you ladies are seriously seriously mistreating guys in the world around you, and at the conviction with which you all are doing it, reflects an utter lack of not only maturity in your behavior, but disregard for your fellow human beings in general.

I know I know what you all are thinking, women have struggled to be where they are, and men have historically been the crueler gender blah blah blah. Hello Past Tense, if your thinking present day examples from Pakistan, hello again, Not your reference group, not your socioeconomic group, doesnt effect the world you live in. So get off that high horse already, those are different worlds, circles and segments of society, and I am not saying you do not give a voice to them, you most definitely should, but why should men, who have no history or no record of ever mistreating women be on the receiving end of aggression by ladies who think it is just plain and simple okay, their entitled to treating men how they deem fit, and men can't raise an eye brow. #TrueStory, I got a lot of flack for raising just an eye brow once in front of a lady. 

Kudos to all the strong independent women out there, who have gotten to where they are with their sheer dedication, hard work, their talents. You have done those who personally know u very proud, you are a friend, your a sister, your a mother, a daughter and a whole lot more. Your success compliments the world we live in, and world may be a bit colourless without you successful ladies. Quick Q, should i be using the word successful ladies or women, or is that not a gender neutral word to use. 

Anyways all other ladies out there, learn something from the successful role models around you, successful women have not gotten to where they are by mistreating the other gender, men, in particular. Infact this is a gender neutral thing, u can be successful without deliberately mistreating people when your feeling a sense of empowerment. Just turn on the television, read the newspaper, spend some time on social media, or watch a show or two on Netflix, you will see that strong female characters in any show, be it Buffy from Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Carrie Matthison from homeland, Very strong female characters, none of them are trying to trample, choke, oppress, boss around or dominate men to get where they are. Have a think about it, you all can get all that you want without stepping on men. But sadly, you guys love stepping on men, and sticking it out to men, it does not matter if their nice to women, it is a good power trip and you love it, admit it.


Anything Goes, Actually it does not!

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Anything goes, everything goes, anything and everything goes. Actually it does not, let me just halt you right there and say it out in a very abrupt manner, no it does not, not everything and anything goes. Okay some of you might be confused and are probably wondering what the hell is this guy on about, I am getting there, actually I wont blah blah so much and try and get to the point ASAP.

What I am talking about is behavior, public and private behavior, I am talking to you millennials out there, yes you heard me that is correct, i am speaking to the whole lot of you born mid 1980s onward. Your behavior, I am talking about your behavior, your behavior towards your fellow human beings, especially fellow millennials is not on, definitely not on, not cool and you all need to get off your high horse and stop treating your fellow millennials with such disdain, with such immaturity, such sexism, such discrimination, such selfishness as if the other person is just some one you saw in the transit lounge of an airport or some semi branded good made by Nestle that you saw at your local super market. 

Human behavior has consequences, sometimes some of those consequences as a result of your behavior, that's right you heard me correctly, sometimes the consequences of your behavior can cause serious harm onto the other person's life, and sometimes it extends beyond the life of the person you are showing such disgusting disregard and apathy for u. There are other lives, linked to every person as well. You cause emotional, social, physical harm of any kind to a fellow millennial, it effects the lives of those around them, not only are you dragging them down, you are also dragging down the loved one's in their life, and the people they interact with regularly.

That's right, I said it, it is due to your behavior millennials, your behavior is immature, irresponsible, and reeks of nothing but selfishness and complete apathy. It seems you lot are just incapable of thinking about anyone but yourselves, well most of you certainly. You lot have this attitude of anything and everything goes, there is no accountability, no maturity, and u can treat anyone any way you all deem fit. This applies to both you dudes, as well as the ladies out there reading this. If I said something like that you millennial ladies are crazy and going through a crazy psychotic power trip where you all think there is a sense of entitlement you all have to mistreating guys, i would be labelled a sexist misogynist relic of the Cold War. So I am not saying any of that, I am keeping my blog Gender Neutral. Yes there was something called the cold war when u guys were either toddlers or new born etc.

A very large number of you Millennials are now atleast in their mid 20s, so Grow the Fuck up already, and start acting like a bunch of mature, intelligent, educated young adults, as opposed to a bunch of teenagers, the kind some of us on US teen dramas back in the 90s. Your childish immature behavior which is comparable to teenagers is sickening and destroy's lives, get a grip, have a triple espresso, whatever you need to do, GROW THE FUCK up, before another millennial does any of the above to You, and we are in a never ending sick cycle of over hyper crazy millennial behavior.