A Break from Routine Improves Mood

Today I went out of the way of my nature. I watched some football, played Bubble Shooter on phone, and watched some Tedx videos. I never used to do that. I have been in a low mood, and in a feeling of despair. As I am unemployed at the moment and the irony is I don’t want to do what I was going. I was not enjoying jobs that I did. I changed a lot of jobs and careers with the aim to find my calling. In this state of confusion, I got into depression and developed a sense of failure. Getting failed in something is not worse than not knowing what you should do.

So, today I decided to go against my nature. Therefore, I watched some football. I don’t know anything about the game. I just know that group of people of two teams kick a ball from foot to get a goal. and Goalkeeper is there to stop the goal of opposite team.

I couldn’t watch football for more than 10 minutes. So I downloaded Bubble Shooter. I knew about this game because one of my colleagues used to play it at work 8 years ago. She was fond of this game. I was attracted to it because of colorful balls and a cool ambiance.

Surprisingly I really enjoyed the game and continued playing for 2-3 hours and cleared 50 levels successfully. It developed a sense of achievement and refreshed my mood.

Then, just before writing this post, I watched two inspirational TEDx videos on Youtube. And from there I got excited to write something about my experience of the day.

I started the day with the usual feelings of despair and disappointment and got into a happy state of mind. I realized sometimes going against your routine and trying experiencing something different activates part of your brain that releases good chemicals. I don’t know much about neuroscience but from the psychology point of view, I could surely say that it really helps. And there is certainly no harm in trying it.

Umair Raheel.


Mob of Self-Worshipers


I don’t fit in the society

that is clustered by,

the self- worshipers,

exposing their perishable selves,

to seek validation from the peers.

In return, praising them like,

trading the appreciation.


I pursue something more meaningful,

than the mere appearances,

Something that is substantial,

which makes you unique,

Your art, your individuality ,

making you distinctive ,

in the mob of similar beings.

~Umair R.~

Image Source: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/161144492895723885/

But Keep on Dreaming


I wonder if there is a place where all of our wishes come true, as soon as our mind desire them. Think of an A grade in exam and you get an A without putting much of an effort. Or you dream of a new model of BMW at night and next morning, you find the desired brand new car in your garage with keys hanging on your door handle. Can life be that dreamy? I know, it’s not and it can’t be. But just for a while, let’s ‘dream’ of a society where such miracles actually happen. Where wishes and dreams come true without praying to God or struggling for them!

Human life revolves around the pursuit of the dreams, ambitions and desires. Students work to get good grades while teachers work to get paid well. Mother spends her whole life to serve her children while father works hard to feed his family and to earn a comfortable life for his kids. In corporate world, employees work to get a monthly salary and a promotion at the end of the year, for that matter they spend 8 to 10 hours pleasing their bosses while the bosses with a suit and tie, do nothing but bother to maintain their reputation in front of the big boss. In this mechanical social cycle, one serves the other and in return gets served by someone else. For instance, your driver is your servant who gets your orders and keeps saluting you on his duty but at home, his wife waits to make him happy by any means. That helpless wife simultaneously spit her anger on her children and those children bully younger kids on streets and in schools.

In short, the wheel of society runs by getting orders from one side and giving to the other. Please the authority and get pleased by subordinates. The powerful has right to make laws for those who have to abide without questioning them and the powerful is above the law (this is what actually happen). And we all do this to earn our living. Of course, a man (who is a driver) doesn’t always like to salute his master or the maid at times may desire to get served by someone. But we do our duties to endure our life. And this is how this social system sustains itself.

We dream and desire and work hard to make our dreams come true. The entire purpose of living is to struggle for our dreams. But what if we don’t have to struggle to make our dreams come true? There would be no servant and no master. Nobody would like to travel via public transport if everyone could afford a car and a driver. But the question is who will make the car? And who would wish to become a driver? Would we like to go to the farms or villages to get vegetables for us? Or we should train ourselves for a haircut?

In this world, there is a majority of people who do what they don’t like. Not because they choose it for them but because there is no other choice left for them. The society decides professions. Whether one has to become the servant or the master? And that is the core principle on which this world of power revolves. Therefore, realistically, there would be no place where dreams come true by our own wishes. We have to achieve them through either honest struggle or unfair means. The unevenness and inequality in society is what keeps it going. We need sweepers, barbers, farmers equally as we need teachers, musicians and cricketers. It’s just that some of the occupations get massive respect for what they do perhaps they deserve it more because they have pursuit their dreams while others do their work only to sustain their living on the face of earth without getting enough respect and acknowledgement because they have not chosen their destiny and they don’t have time to dream.

Umair R.

In the Love of Writer


I’m startled to ponder what my heart said,
It fell for the purity of the words I read.
The emotion you secretly hide in phrase,
My soul delicately unfolds to Amaze.
Call it a sheer innocence of lofty thoughts,
or murky occult of provoking simplicity,
Whose allure makes you so adorable?
Perhaps it’s the fantasy that only I see.
That deep silence trembles my peace,
Tranquility of your soul moves the breeze.
How to praise your majestic humbleness
which steadily amplifying your geniality.
The profound influence of your illusion,
Gently fading perception of my reality.

~Umair R.~

Image Source: http://www.wikihow.com/Get-Started-Writing-a-Book

Changing Ourselves to Please Others

They say change is good. I agree change is good if it adds value to your life. Change could be of many types, however two broad categories of change would be: you change yourself on your own call and changing ourselves to meet the set criterion of our family or friends. Most of us try to change to please others. They think by doing so they would get acceptance by others and people start liking them. Fat people go on strict diet plans and start sweating in gym just to get ‘ideal’ figure so that they may attract people and receive compliments. While some apply expensive cosmetics to look beautiful. This happens when you hate yourself and the present state you are in. This hatred makes you obsessive about good looks and lowers your self esteem that may result in indulging risking behaviors.

There is no harm in working out and taking healthy diet if you do it for your own betterment. We should work on our image and all have a right to look good. But it must not happen for the sake of others. At the first place, we should establish peace within and be friends with our own self. Then only we could love others and make them happy. But it should not be done on the cost of your self esteem. It’s not a good deal to trade your individuality by struggling to get rid of your personality traits. You are beautiful because God made you unique. Start loving yourself to be capable of loving others.

Way towards Peace & Freedom

The word freedom has multiple connotations. For me freedom is a calm feeling to live a life free from all fears. A greater part of our lives go wasted while being trapped in mixed feelings of fear and unknown confusion about our own existence or the world we are surrounded with. We get too many questions to answer and some worries and concerns about daily life chores that made us pre-occupied with strange thoughts thus failing to get real exposure of life – The life which is long awaited behind the shadows of darkness and uncertainty. This is the point where faith serves as vehicle and shines a ray of hope emerging from dark clouds of disappointment, fear or any other negative energy.

Life is meant to be lived fully with the interest-in-life intact. Every day brings a hope towards life and motivates you for moving forward. I agree many internal and external factors discourage us in our struggle to live in peace and at the same time I know it depends on us to what extend we let these pulling factors rule our mind. Mind is the admin of body and it is controlled by soul. Soul is absolutely free from time and space. It’s our choice if work harder on body and make it rule our mind or be friends with soul to get the inner peace of mind and body. By doing this we would not only become free from stress and all other negative energies but also start emitting positive vibes and surround ourselves with favorable environment which is much required to enrich beautiful mind and soul.

Criticism on Contemporary Media


Criticism on Media

Being a student of mass communication I really get irritated at times this irritation exceeds to the limit of frustration when contemporary media is blamed for every social problem. It’s a perception of a lay man that whatever happens in the society is because it is depicted on television screen or cinema if we talk about big screen. However, the situation is exactly opposite to it. Media is showing what is happening in the society and it’s brutal, cruel, nasty or immoral than it’s not the fault of media.

In conservative societies where there is a significant number of people who are living in the digital age and thinks TV Radio Internet should be banned or restricted don’t actually realize the potential of mass media. There was an ex-colleague, once he proudly said that he takes all nephew niece to watch Tom and Jerry cartoon on internet and then he pull out the internet connection wire so that no kid could access internet in his absence. I asked the age of the eldest kid and he was 13, means 2-3 years later when he would get the exposure of real world, he might try everything from which he was restrained.

I believe educating kids about content of media and providing age appropriate information is the solution instead of complete BAN. Banning has never been a solution to any problem. When we buy a mobile phone or a microwave oven, it comes with a small guide book mentioning how to use it to fully utilize it. Similarly, there should be a guide book for television as well. Kids are not supposed to watch typical Indian masala drama, rather they should watch national geographic, discovery or cartoon network for their intellectual growth. If a mother is watching a family politics drama with her kids, then responsibility comes on mother’s shoulder not the media.

Lastly I would like to comment on CONTENT. No media is bad media. It’s same as knife or gun can be used both ways for a positive purpose to help and negative purpose to kill. Similarly, content could be good or bad but not media. Media is just a channel and means of communication. Who criticize content of media, I strongly invite them to start communicating good things for the betterment on social media (of course running a TV channel is not possible for everyone) Be a responsible source of information and lead people towards prosperity. Play your role but Don’t complaint.

Short Keys to Unlock Happiness

Happiness is not very expensive even in this era of social frustration. In most of the cases, we have to pay the cost of everything which we wish to bring in our acquisition. As they say, there is nothing like Free Lunch in this world. Similarly, Happiness has a cost too. But this cost is not paid in cash or through your credit card. You might be thinking about your new house in a posh area or your luxurious car or branded clothes which you recently bought for yourself, for which you have paid a handsome amount and feel so much happy about this asset. Is the material acquisition of goods enough to make a person happy and satisfied? NO. If goods could make you happy; then the elite women would not have to fix appointments with a psychiatrist for their mental peace.
There is no specific formula for happiness or inner peace. However, I figured out some common cognitive attributes which may be helpful in releasing depression and accelerate positivity in your thoughts.
Value Yourself: The first very important point which leads towards happiness is to value yourself. Don’t think that you are worthless creature. Allah (s.w.t) has created every living being with a purpose and none of His creation is useless. Start analyzing yourself by pointing out your strengths and solution for your weaknesses. Think about your achievements and feel good about them. With a low level of self esteem; you should not expect to live a happy life.
Your are Not Here to Please Everybody: Most of the times we do things to make others happy: our bosses, management, husband, wife, friend etc. I’m not asking you to annoy them but at least stop killing yourself to meet their expectations. You are a Human who has his own life, likes and dislikes, dreams. You should do things which make you happy and of course which do not deviate from your code of ethics and moral standards. If an evening walk makes your mind fresh then go for it; don’t wait for a friend to accompany you. If you feel like having an ice cream; don’t beg your brother or husband to get it for yourself. Make a wish list and start following.
Ignore the phrase “Log Kia Kahengay” : Usually before doing something of our interest, the first phrase which strikes our mind or mom says is “Log Kia Kahengay” (what would people say). Just remember people are here to talk. They would comment or rather criticize even on your positive behavior. So just ignore them and judge your actions on your own parameters. You are intelligent enough to weigh the impact of your action on you and others. If something, according to you, is fine then its fine.
Worries about materialistic acquisition: Today, we live in a capitalist world where the purpose of living is to make as much money as we could in order to consume ‘Everything’ which others have. Being Muslims, its our faith to believe in the power of Almighty Allah. I heard a very deep thought sentence from a friend that “Naseeb se ziada aur waqt se pehlay kisi ko kuch nahi milta” (You cannot get more than your destiny and before time). It is not in our hands but to work hard with honestly, is surely within our reach. So we should play our part and leave rest to Him who plans better than us.
Praise people who deserve: Sharing happiness of others inculcates positivity in our thought and attitude. If your friend gets a position in exam; you must congratulate him on his success and share his happiness. Similarly, your colleague who gets a promotion deserves your honest wishes on his achievement. Be the part of your closed ones on the occasion of happiness and grief. This will make your heart kind and tender and you would start taking things positively.

Review: Veronika Decides to Die by Paulo Coelho


Veronika Decides to Die by Paulo Coelho

I just finished reading a Paulo Coelho’s book “Veronika Decides to Die” yesterday. The author beautifully told a story of a young 24 year old girl, Veronika; who was pretty, had a steady job, boyfriends, loving parents, thus everything that one could wish for to be happy. But she was not happy and she didn’t know why. Failing to recognize the reason for unhappiness, she decided to die and took over dose of sleeping pills. She was taken to hospital – rather a mental hospital where she was told that she was suffering from a cardiac disease and just had a week more to live. That was her life changing moment. She took pills because she wanted to die at once but now she had to live for six or seven more days and she knew that waiting for death is more painful than actual death.

She was given sedatives and other drugs via injections so initially she could not retain her consciousness for very long. She met with few people in asylum – Villete: Zedka who was suffering from depression, Mari, who was a lawyer, had panic attacks which Doc Igor referred as ‘fear’ and finally Eduard – the schizophrenic with whom Veronika fell in eternal love later on.
She met with Zedka and asked “what is mad”. Zedka explained her that mad person is the one who is different from others. He tends to deviate from the set norms or so called practices of society. Because most of us don’t have courage to act differently, therefore we don’t accept change. She gave examples of great scientists like Albert Einstein and Newton and philosophers who discovered hidden truth about life and this world. They were not the normal people. They were extra ordinary and thus changed the world from their knowledge. Zedka made sense to Veronika and she thought she should not have been admitted into mental hospital.
Veronika started feeling dull and lost interest in life, in fact few remaining days of life. She wanted to die but she didn’t know how to materialize her wish in a mental hospital where she was kept under observation all the time. She had enough time to think about her past. What she had and what she did in these twenty four years of life. Her past flashed back into her mind. She did a good university degree in law but ended up doing a job as librarian. She spent half of her life in eating sandwiches as a part of her set routine. Got back from work, rush into the bar, then to lover’s bed and finally hit her bed to sleep. She didn’t want to sleep in someone else’s bed. She was following this routine since long and thus left charm in life. She was scared of trying new exciting things. She probably didn’t know how to add colors to her life. At Villete, she tried few new things, like slapping to a Fraternity member was something she never thought of doing in public. She began playing piano. It was something she always wanted to do but couldn’t make it. There, she met with Eduard – schizophrenic who was living in his own world with a ‘Vision of Paradise’ in mind. He didn’t talk to Veronika but always asked her to play pianao in moonlight. Veronika started enjoying doing it for somebody she didn’t know.
At last, they both fell in love. Eduard told her his story what brought him into Villete. He wanted to be a painter but his family wanted him to pursue a career as diplomat. He indulged himself in abstract painting and envisioned to create a series of “Vision of Paradise”. His parents were frightened of losing him and he thought he had discovered himself. Upon negating his passion on the wish of his parents, he lost the interest in ‘real’ world and went into a ‘virtual’ world of his own imagination. When he was brought into Villete, he was diagnosed as mild schizophrenia.
Veronika was getting passionate about Eduard and frightened to lose everything soon. Because she was dying and it was her own wish.  Now she had just 24 more hours to live. She decided to make most of her every moment. She told Dr Igor that she wanted to go out and do things which she never did. She wanted to tell her mother that she love her. She wanted to explore the world. But now it was too late.
Same day Eduard and Veronika escaped from the Villete. They went to the most expensive restaurant, got drunk and started talking non sense. They laughed out loud and the restaurant manager had to ask them to leave without clearing the bills. They went to the castle at the top of hill and Vernokia asked him to paint herself after her death. She made him promise that he would continue painting because this is his passion.
Veronika didn’t die.
Dr Igor was successful in controlling Vitriol (Bitterness) in Veronika. He created ‘awareness of living’ by creating ‘awareness of death’. And it worked in case of Veronika. She had every reason to be happy but she tried to commit suicide. She could change her life by doing what she actually wanted. If she could please herself rather than pleasing others she might not have thought about taking her life. Interestingly, now when she knew she is alive only for few days, she got enough time to visualize and evaluate her past and look at the mistakes she did or the mistakes she never did. She had encountered the love of life at the most crucial stage. This is point when she realized that life is worth living.