WAITT

Helpline Diaries 5

The Power of ‘Here & Now’

Being counselors, we often talk about the importance of the ‘Power of here and now’. It is extremely crucial to be in the ‘present’ rather than to dwell in the past or keep on wandering in the ‘future’. If a person goes on an ‘emotional time travel’ to the past, what will he experience? He will experience guilt and regret, and if he enters his ‘future’ he will be experiencing anxiety and fear. In the process, one loses the focus on the ‘present’ and ends up in an emotional turmoil. This emotional time travel can be menacing and malign as it depletes your energy, and completely exhausts your mind and body. 

I realized this once when I interacted with a client recently. It was a young boy, who was going through a lot of emotional issues like fear, anxiety, and breathlessness. In spite of being a bright student throughout his academic career, he was still struggling to make it through the placement interviews. With just one or two experiences of failures in the interviews, he lost confidence in his own abilities. This failure made him realize that he could never be able to crack any interview and will be without a job his entire life. His past experience was affecting his current situation. Every time he would approach for a new job interview, he would remember all the bad experiences and failures. Instead of prepping for his interview wholeheartedly, he would sulk feel he might fail again! 

All of these actions are like flogging a dead horse! It makes you go off-track and lose focus from your present, and that is exactly what was happening to that young boy. Added to his woes, he started to procrastinate things even in his daily routine, which lead to a very bad sleeping cycle and made him more lethargic. It took him a lot of effort to call up our helpline and get professional help. After multiple efforts, he finally connected with us recently. 

Initially, he was a bit hesitant to open up but by the end of our session, he felt quite comfortable sharing his worries. During our session, he mentioned about how he is very anxious when it comes to talking to strangers. I couldn’t help but ask him if he was comfortable speaking to me? He mentioned how since this is a telephonic conversation, it is less troublesome for him as he is not presently sitting in front of me. 

During our session, we discussed his weaknesses which were, fear of failing, anxious talking to strangers, personal interviews, over-thinking of past experiences, procrastinating, lack of confidence, and much more. We tried to facilitate him into thinking logically on his weak areas and one by one we came to some reasonable solutions. 

Even though he realized where his strong points & strength lies, he had set realistic life goals for himself in the first session itself! It was needed to strengthen them all by himself by constantly working towards them till they would become a part of him and his daily routine. After our session, I suggested to him that he could reach out to me anytime when in doubt and I will be there to guide and support him. He did call multiple times to discuss further  to a more subtle and finer level of his self-awareness.

I wish him all the success in his life!!!

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Medha Pujari

Autism Specialist & Counsellor

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