Retaining passion, positivity and inner discovery in the face of hardships – do we have stress ready future leaders?

All of us are passionate for something in life! We all have had peaks and valleys that follow when pursuing our passions. Whether it is work, arts, sports, fitness, career or anything else, sometimes we lose sleep because we get dejected on not meeting our own expectations! Most often, it’s the environment that causes this to happen.

But what happens when our passions stay submerged during prolonged stress situations? The days on which we don’t feel excited or motivated go on longer and turn into weeks or maybe even months. Since for many of us, our passions become etched into our being, our identity, and our sense of self, losing focus and positivity during stressful times, panic, anxiety and depression may set-in.

What inspires us to go on in face of hardships

Here is one technique that works for me. When in situations which dampen positivity in times of active stressors, set a goal and then plan to achieve that goal towards resumption of passion. Recent studies have indicated that mindfulness can be beneficial in times of active stressors[1]. Stepping back, introspection and inner-work often works and empowers us. Self-care and balance are essential elements in pursuing anything that you love.

I have used this in my personal life, when I realized the need to discover my positives, strengths and achievements. I needed to focus on my strengths rather than compare myself to those around me. Secondly, I realized that I needed to spend more time working for myself and my self-growth and learning. Just working and doing what I do best for feeding my passion and satisfaction, I felt joy again.

“Learning” - elevate to new heights?

So, if your passion is currently causing you to feel burnt out or stressed, don’t be afraid to give it some space and tackle it with positivity. Taking a few steps back and focusing on inner strengths will make it easier to deal with pressures. By letting go, we allow the universe to show us the path studded with a new passion that we would’ve never imagined.

For our young population and children who will turn into future leaders, we need to send out a strong message that working on mindfulness, self-introspection, self-efficacy and keep working on reawakening our self-esteem time and again (in face of stressful times) are the best remedial actions. India is slowly moving towards mindfulness in school curriculum (yoga being one such strategy). Schools can also teach children to work on their inner strengths and bouncing back on their growth journeys to help them stand firm through rough patches. Only education and good mentors can do that! So, let’s invest in education, let’s invest in stress ready future leaders.

[1] Facing the facets: No association between dispositional mindfulness facets and positive momentary stress response during active stressors, Sage Journals, 2020

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