Of a stress management workshop

Well, I intend to free write on the stress management workshop I attended yesterday. To be true, I have never had any positive opinion about the workshops like time management, leadership skills development, positive thinking and so on and so forth, so I didn’t have any better opinion about this particular workshop, either. Though, I attended it nevertheless. I thought atleast the money would be worth spent as it would go to flood victims. So, here I was into the workshop with forty people, rather forty strangers. I went to the workshop all alone without any acquaintance. not that it matters, but it is good to have someone whom you know, just in case…

We started off from learning what stress is and we learnt that stress is a biological, psychological and physiological response of our body and mind (for me body and mind are two separate things because mind is more than matter for me) to the outside happening and external environment and particular situation.

Then after some more explanation we were given some tests to ascertained as to how much stressed we are (basically, it was two step tests, one was to determine how stressful the environment is, around a particular individual, and what are the symptoms of stress).

Skipping some thing; in one of the next phases of the workshop we learnt more about ourselves by forming a spiritual family. We formed spiritual family with the person sitting next to us…so it was in one case threesome (as the facilitator put it:P) and in the other case it was a pair). In one of the instances, the partner had to ask who are you and that question has to be repeatedly asked for five minutes and in the answer to the question, each time, you had to tell something new about yourself and by the end of the session you would realize that you start off with all the flashy things about yourself but within two minutes you seem to have nothing to say about ‘who you are’. Actually this session was to tell you that ‘you are nothing’ at the end of the day. Well, that doesn’t mean that you are unworthy or something, but it is to tell you to stop pretending to be ‘something’ all the time and ‘be yourself’…

All in all, the whole workshop until the second last session had to tell us the following:
Learn to be happy now (WITHOUT ANY STRINGS ATTACHED)
TRY LIVING IN THE MOMENT (back in 2007 when i was going to a trip to fairy meadows, I was having a discussion with a friend of mine who went to that trip with me, and I told her that my problem is that I dont live in the moment and that is something which overshadows my life and my whole existence…and I still continue to be like that, so the realization has been there which was further reinforced by this workshop)
The third was existence by yourself (do not try to put yourself in relativity paradigm, although sometimes existence narrows down to just that, which is unfortunate)
And yea I am nothing
Remove splinters from your life
(I will write separately on all these above mentioned to do things)

the last session and the one to take away with you was yoga, well I have always been interested in yoga and i tried to self learn it once (it was quite a few years back, now although i read about yoga a little but no practical thing). So we adopted the breathing paradigm of Yoga, I am glad that we did that because I have always been interested in the breathing exercises.

we learnt five steps:
Breathing Observation
Warriors Breathing, Bhastrika
Alternative Breathing, Pranayama
Scalp shining, Kapalbhati
Withdrawal of senses (I hope I am not wrong about this term)

I learnt from the workshop:
Well, it wasn’t anything very new, it is just that things traveled from from unconscious to conscious (to some extent), and also the thing is that you do not absorb everything you hear or see or feel, you absorb what sinks into your senses.

One thing which I always realize is that no matter how many such workshops you attend, no matter how many such books you read, no matter how many inspirational TED talks you listen to, it is you who has to do it for yourself. The worksops, books, TED talks can tell you how to do it but the action part is all yours, YOU ARE THE ONE WHO WILL DO IT FOR YOURSELF (these caps are to tell myself)

sometimes you really need slap or hard pushes to do things, to move your bones…

The Facilitator:

If I don’t mention the facilitator it would be really injustice to the whole description. Although I think he hadn’t done all he would have, otherwise, had the group been more open, had our guards were a little down, had we come out of our shells and that’s the problem with such formal workshops, you just can’t be YOU.
The facilitator Mr. Athar Hameed was damn good especially his references to movies, literature (Urdu English Punjabi) and the fact that he is an ACT in himself was really amazing.

Well, out from these workshop fresh, you are always high, “oh now I can do this and I can do that…now I won’t be all that gloomy or I can take care of it in a better way”…the fact is that it rarely happens. For this to happen, one needs a real inside drive, one really needs to have it inside oneself, one really needs to be able to ACT.


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