How to Become a Happier Person.


How to Become a Happier Person


Image courtesy: © Thinkstockphotos/ Getty images

Life can get you down for a host of reasons, but it only becomes something you have to address if you have been discontent for a long time. All you need to do is change a few things around, organise your life a little better and make a commitment to becoming a happier person. Here are five things you can change to put a smile back on your face.

Find a hobby
If the corporate world is getting you down, try doing something you are passionate about. Most people live their entire lives wishing they did something they love. While it may be unrealistic to think of starting anew, you can always pick up a hobby. Start a collection of some sort and don’t be embarrassed by it. You could even pick up a new sport or devote your evenings to a good swim, the sky is the limit. Adding a sense of fulfilment other than your job, will go a long way in making your life a little happier.
Where do you start: Make a list of things you really love doing, even if it’s just watching movies. Start with two or three passions, and you’ll lose interest in the ones you aren’t zealous about.

Find a friend
Indians for centuries have had a strong support structure in the form of families. Unfortunately or fortunately, over the last couple of decades, nuclear families have become the norm. This has made the need for a support group even more. From work friends to college friends to chaddi buddies, people need others to share their ups and downs. Now, this does not mean adding more people on your Facebook page. Social scientists have found that meeting a core group of people that you know will stand by you add to your overall well-being.
Where do you start: If you find yourself too busy to meet any one, it is about time you started. Fit friends into your schedule rather than just talking to them over the phone. Engage in activities that will get your friends together, even if it means just having a cup of coffee on a Sunday afternoon.

Organise your future 
This doesn’t mean cleaning out your closet. Set yourself a few attainable goals in every area of your life. Whether it is financially, in your career or in your personal life, the idea of committing to something and watching it come to fruition can be a rewarding experience. Studies have shown that people who make short-term plans deal with life much better than others.
Where do you start: Make goals with different time frames. Start with the obvious daily ones, then have twoyear, five-year and 10-year plans. Write them down and knock them off ones you’ve completed them.

Make the job switch
Now, being absolutely content with your job might be too much to ask for, but it shouldn’t be a chore either. Most Indians spend more time at work than they do at home, so obviously it ranks high on your happiness index. The happier you are in your job, the happier you will be in life. So if you are stuck in a job you hate, maybe it is time for a change.
Where do you start: Don’t jump the gun, make a list of things that you don’t like about the job and the things that you love. You need to know whether it is your career that you are discontent with or your company. Get enough research done and also try and develop more skills so that you are prepared for any transition.

Feel healthy
Though pigging out on the juiciest burger might give you instant happiness, studies show that it is your overall lifestyle that actually matters. Exercise, a proper diet and avoiding things you know will harm you do more than just improve your physical well-being. The healthier you are the better you will feel about yourself and your life.

Where do you start: Remember that living healthy is difficult and requires a lot of work on your part. Make a commitment to eat healthy and stay fit through regular exercise. You might miss out on a few foods you crave, but remind yourself to focus on the bigger picture.


Moms and Their Struggle to Feed Picky Eaters.

Moms run tirelessly after their little ones to feed them

Moms and Their Struggle to Feed Picky Eaters


Every visit to my mom’s house is filled with questions about my kids’ eating habits. I always tell her the kids eat everything but she insists on making something special for them. Each time she calls, I put down the phone in a frenzy saying I am busy feeding the kids and will call back later. An hour later when I call her back she will ask, “Did the kids eat well?” In her mind I know she wonders why I get worked up about the kid’s meals. She will often say “I raised four kids but didn’t ever need to feed them. And they eat so healthy! Wonder how we did it?”

I know she empathises with me on how I manage my kids in today’s time but I also know that she wonders why it is so difficult to feed children today. Our parents probably didn’t spend half as much money or time in feeding us. Picky eaters were a novel concept back then. So really what has changed?

The other day I made dosa for my daughter and she insisted on having it with cheese. I growled like a mama bear, “How can every food item have cheese in it?” How do you know what it tastes like if it’s loaded with cheese and butter?

When I was a kid, I don’t remember cheese as a food item at all. I don’t remember butter even, except the white butter that we had with bajra roti.

Maggi, which was probably only Rs.5 back then seemed so expensive that our parents bought it only once in the summer holidays. Today, our kids grow up eating organic fruits and vegetables, cage-free eggs and gourmet foods but still it takes us an iPad, high chair, favourite TV show and a dedicated person to feed them. Parents are so particular about the source of food and where it comes from, how it is cleaned, where it is bought from and so on.

If you Google picky eaters in the 80s, it will be hard to find an article, and if you Google it without the year, you will find lots of ideas on how to feed them. There were no food art ideas, no blogs that helped you feed picky eaters and no time to wonder and discuss which food group your child is probably missing out on. My mom believes that it was because we had respect and discipline, but no compulsions.

I don’t think moms back then had the time or the help to blend all the vegetables the child needed to eat. I never heard of a child back then saying I don’t eat fruits and never saw moms running tirelessly after their little ones feeding them a garden snack.

As a Gujarati girl, I don’t remember my mom telling me not to eat jalebis, gathiyas or chakris because it’s junk. I made that choice. And in hindsight, the way our parents raised us seems way better than what we are doing today. As I serve more dosas to the daughter, I search for answers and think whether it is a choice that has really spoilt them or awareness that has us troubled. I am still wondering if it is the limited patience both in parents and children or manpower and money at disposal that makes food, a basic necessity for some, such an important part of an urban parent’s life.


Image courtesy: ©Thinkstock photos/ Getty images

5 Ways to Help Your Child Deal with School Stress.

5 Ways to Help Your Child Deal with School Stress

By  (

Stress at school is a common phenomenon that little ones face. Who would imagine tiny angels burdened with such a lot of pressure. But coping with schoolwork, homework, extra classes, tests and exams can be a tiresome thing and more so if they are disinterested. Top that with the pressure of being the best and you have a child who is fed-up with life already! As parents, we’ve got to set this right and help our kids lead a happier, stress-free life.

We need to help our kids deal with school-related stress and motivate them to grow stronger both physically and mentally. Here are some tips which may help you give greater support, encouragement and confidence to your little one and help her achieve the best she can.

1. Identify the symptoms of stress:

Firstly, identify the symptoms in your child that indicate that she is under stress. Some of the apparent signs and symptoms of being under stress are irritable behaviour, change in sleep and appetite, lack of concentration in studies and more. So, recognise these indications of stress in your child and help her cope with stress.

2. Talk to your child about her fears: 

Talk to your child about her worries, tensions and anxieties. By talking to her, you will be able to find out what is troubling her. Let her take time to calm down before she starts speaking. Further, listen to her carefully and assure her that you will help her find solutions. Make sure not to talk to your child about stress in front of others, as she may find it difficult to open up. Find a place within home or somewhere outside, where your child can freely speak her heart out.

3. Maintain a pleasant environment at home: 

Find out what changes can be made at home to de-stress those situations that can cause anxiety. Make time at the end of the day for the entire family to talk to each other about the day’s events and also involve your child in such conversations. Remember to maintain a congenial environment, as a stress-free atmosphere at home will help your child in conquering her anxiety, stress and tension.

4. Help your child finish assignments herself:

Assisting your child to finish her homework all the time will make her over-dependent. Moreover, as she grows, she may not be able to cope with her studies at higher grades in the absence of your supervision. This in turn may make situations difficult and stressful for her. Therefore, make your child self-dependent and capable of doing work herself without always seeking support.

5. Teach her good time management skills:

Good time management skills can help your child cope with anxiety experienced during examination and while completing lengthy home assignments. So, prepare a flexible schedule that best suits her learning style. Make sure that she can follow the timetable without much effort. However, do not set strict rules for studying, because if your child is not able to cope with the set guidelines, she may get tensed and feel stressed, which in turn may not bring the desired results. In the end, remember that although it is impossible to avoid the challenges in school that may cause stress, you can always help your child to overcome them in ways that would give her the foundation to solve problems later in life. Therefore, be a guide; a mentor; a moral support and above all, a stress-buster for your child so that she enjoys her school days in the best possible way.