“Not sure what to call it. Loss of “, a long pause. “I feel I have lost all the finer points that made me”, Satish murmured.
“Don’t you think you are overthinking?”, Zaheer questioned in a confrontational tone.
“Yes, but I can’t stop overthinking. Zillions of thoughts are blocking me from thinking anything useful or doing anything with focus.”, Satish clarified.
“Then stop thinking”, Zaheer said innocently and Satish smiled but his helplessness was clearly visible in his eyes.
Satish is in his mid-career. He has been successful for the past two decades with the uniqueness that he brought to the table every time. He was always considered as different. When the whole world thinks of solving a problem in one way, he spontaneously comes up with an out of the box solution to solve the problem more efficiently. He is known as an Ideator who can come up with ideas in no time. His simple and effective solutions made him what he is today.
Recently he found himself in a very difficult situation. Whenever there is any situation where zillions of different ideas are negating each other to make him mum. Because his nature is jovial and he is considered as talkative, he continued his talking but without much substance. This made him to be tagged as blabber box.
Zaheer being a very close friend and colleague could understand his frustration and was trying to help but doesn’t know how except telling stop thinking too much.
‘Stop thinking’ or ‘Stop worrying’ are one of the most common but weird advice we keep getting as the advisor doesn’t know how to stop. This does not mean the advisor doesn’t want to help but the challenge is advisor despite sincere efforts does not know how to help.
Once we are tagged as an adult, we are supposed to be knowing all answers ourselves. When things are right, we are good but when things go wrong seeking advice is the most challenging job. You need somebody non-judgemental to listen to your problems without any obligation to answer or advice. But when we finish telling our situation, we want the advisor to transform to a god like figure and give us the exact precise answer that solves our problem and suits our ego.
Unfortunately we don’t get any because people preach or give advice as soon as we open our mouth to tell our problem.
Co-Bro: Sometimes our problems are immediately undermined as the advisor shares his her problem which of not only of similar kind but of bigger than ours. We don’t feel comfortable when people undermine our problems but our advisors do that thinking when they tell they have faced bigger problem we might feel better thinking our problem is small and can be solved in a snap. I call these advisors as ‘Co-Pro’ as they always have a similar problem as ours.
Why-Bro: In some situations the advisor immediately starts preaching us how we were wrong to get into this problem. How the advisor ensure he or she avoids getting into such situation. But those advices do not help as we are already in a problem and want to get out of it. Instead of the solution we get criticism for our incapabilities to handle the situation and for getting into such a mess. I call these advisors and ‘Why-Bro’ as the feeling we get after the conversation is, why did I get into this problem at all.
Okay-Bro: In some situations we find advisors who listen to our problem patiently and end the conversation stating, ‘It will be alright’. This gives some soothing feeling that somebody heard but disappointing as we did not find any solution to the problem. I call them as ‘Okay-bro’ as they finish the conversation stating it will be Okay.
Do this-Bro: But what we need is, not only somebody listens to our problem but also solves our problem. We do get many who gives us direct advice. What exactly we should do to solve the problem. But the challenge is most of the time it does not work. It either does not work because the solution does not fit our personality or we get frustrated pursuing the solution after sometime as we do not see any tangible result. So we stop implementing the solution as well as avoid the advisor as he or she may ask us hw is it going.
Mum-Bro: Yes, sometimes we get the right advisor who does the first part right. That is listening patiently. We vent our frustration in-front of these advisors who has empathetic eyes and just mirrors our problem to us which makes us think through and feel better. They live in our problem when we describe them. But at the end of it although we feel better but we find ourselves at the same place as we were earlier because the problem has not solved yet.
We need a quick pill-like solution that magically solves the problem. But we don’t get anybody who has that magic wand. Then over time, the problem gets solved by itself or we consider that problem as part of our life.
When we look back to our problems after they become non-existent we find it silly. We feel we are much wiser now hence such problems will not occur again. But then comes a new problem to keep us engaged for a while.
Solution of a problem has two parts. Where the first part is when the world around us has to change and second part is changing ourselves. We do not look at the second part as we are ‘Perfect’. We spend all our efforts in solving the worlds problem but strangely it does not yield any result. If we look back at all our past problems we strangely find a common theme. The world around us never changed but overtime we stopped looking at the problem the same way as we were looking at it when we were troubled.
Hence, although we are undeniably perfect, we must attempt to divert our attention from the problem and give a fresh look at a later time when we are feeling better to find that magical solution. When practiced enough we will realise that magic wand is with us and we have been searching all over.