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Short Take: Healing with words
January 10, 2015
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Healing with words

Back in university, I took up an interesting course that was a pre-requisite for being a writing tutor. We not only discussed writing, but our passions, aspirations with regards to writing etc.

During one of our classes, my professor casually mentioned that a most fascinating area in the field of therapy was writing therapy. That particular class, she gave us a glimpse into it and by the end of that session I was spellbound.

I ended up doing up my term research paper on the subject.

You might ask how this exactly works.

Well, it’s not just simple typing away to glory (I had thought that at first too). It has a step-by-step process and a guide could be found online. I remember I was completely refreshed by the end of that class, I just followed my professor’s soothing voice and instructions.

If you are someone like me who has always found solace in words, you might want to try this technique when in distress or just as a mind refresher.

I believe that the saying is quite right, that sometimes words are exactly what one needs to heal wounds.
Vismay Anand

Safetyfirst

Many times life changes in a flash.

Looking at the weather scenario and the fog happening these days bring a sense of caution to all those who are driving in the UAE.

A strong sense of self-responsibility is required by everyone to drive slowly and safely. If and when one finds someone driving dangerously during bad weather, all efforts should be made to control the situation.

“Start early, drive carefully and reach safely” be our mantra at all times when we plan a journey.
 Ramesh Menon

Hello doctor

There are many things we learn while on the journey of life. I often remember my medical adviser’s training when I was working for a pharmaceutical company decades ago.

A brilliant trainer who was a doctor taught me Anatomy and Physiology, which was connected with our products. Recently, I went with a friend to a doctor for consultation.

The doctor used various technical terms and I was able to ask some questions.

The doctor was surprised that a layman could ask relevant questions in medicine.

I explained how my trainer had groomed us in the pharmaceutical firm. Good teachers do have a lasting impact on students.
K. Ragavan

Child-like bliss

I was waiting at the gate of our building, around 7pm, for a friend. Usually, when I am in a similar situation, all by myself, I indulge in my favourite pastime — observing people.

Thus I observed that the people scurrying past me, either into the building or out of it, all had a pre-occupied look about them.

So was a mother who headed into the building holding her little boy, maybe 8 – 10 years old, by the hand. The mother was probably bringing him back from tuitions, evident from the bag slung over his shoulders.

Once inside the gates, the mother let go of her boy and hurried on. But the little fellow seemed to be under no compulsions. He lingered around to look at something that had caught his fancy (I truly wondered what it might have been because I couldn’t find anything fanciful there), then stretched out his arms, closed his eyes and did a couple of turns. Finally, dragging his feet and bag in a funny sort of way, he took the steps at leisure.

As I watched him go I wished I could be a child again.

Just then, my friend arrived and my thoughts were diverted. Later, after meeting with my friend, as I was taking the steps to my apartment, I remembered the lad. Suddenly, I had this urge to take the steps as the little thing had done. I found I couldn’t. All the inhibitions and objectionableness of adulthood had taken its toll, made my body (and mind) stiff.

But I did not despair because the incident was a revelation of sorts for me. It made me realise that deep within me is a young, vibrant spirit waiting to overcome the barriers laid by the constraints of a false world.

That freedom of spirit was possible only if I allowed myself to pamper the child in me sometimes. I would definitely be frowned at for it, but was I going to care?
Vidya Shankar

Entrepreneurial secret

When I was 20, while on a train journey a certain thought hit me.

I realised that no matter how intelligent I got working for a corporate, it wouldn’t make me wildly rich.  I could not particularly digest the fact that I lived my whole life listening to what others told me to do right. I agree it was necessary in the first few years, but what if it taking orders becomes a habit over the years.

Nevertheless a short stint in a corporate life was necessary for me to learn the way of the game, which could then be applied in an entrepreneurial adventure. An aspiring entrepreneur needs to let go of all fears before taking a plunge.
Arun Chandran

Nuggets of joy

It is small things that multiply our happiness.

I love every minute of my weekly off day.

A nagging toothache last weekend meant the evening had to be spent on a dentist’s chair. When I entered the clinic, I was told my number was 15. That meant a waiting time of minimum two hours.

I was also informed that the doctor was going on leave for two weeks from the next day.

Patience and I are poles apart.

I booked my number and went out for a walk. After more than an hour, I returned to the clinic.

When in a minute the assistant said, “Your turn,” I whistled in joy. When the dentist let me off in two minutes saying a “minor cleanup” was all that was needed, I hopped out of the clinic in such a joyful mood that the waiting patients thought I had lost my head.

What a feeling of joy!

My nephew gifted me a wristwatch last week.

When I mentioned it on social media, some creative comments from friends included, “Timely start to New Year,” “Careful, you are ‘watch’ed,” ‘’Timepass’’ and even “Wish we all had a nephew like yours!”

The pun and fun made it a delightful day.
R. Ramesh

Check the cheque

The safest way to do any financial transaction is through cheque as the process doesn’t involve cash and the chances of miscalculation or fraud is minimal.

But one has to be careful while issuing a cheque as complacency could lead to an embarrassing situation.

Recently, one of my cousins narrated such a situation he faced when he deposited a cheque to pay his son’s school fees.

After paying the fees, my cousin went to his office and by the next day he totally forgot about it. But a call from school next day saying that his bank hasn’t honoured the cheque shook him up.

The first thing he did was to check his account online to see whether his cheque had been dishonoured due to insufficient cash.

That was not the case as he had enough in his account.

He called the bank to know the reason and was told that cheque wasn’t honoured due to some technical reason.

Worried, the next day he went to the school and demanded the returned cheque and issued a new cheque to pay fees.

Now came the most embarrassing situation when he had a look at his returned cheque.

He found that he forgot to sign it as he was in a hurry to go to his office.

The most humorous part of it was that the cheque passed through at least three hands, first my cousin who failed to notice the sign, then the clerk receiving the cheque and finally the office boy who submitted it at the bank.

At the end none of them could put the blame on other, as all of them were equally responsible for the fiasco.
Faisal Siddiqui

Present perfect

Though traditional approach to gifting has changed, presenting a gift is always a blissful occasion. It cheers up hearts during special occasions like birthdays, anniversaries or New Year.

The other day when I visited a flower shop, the salesman there was designing a bouquet with Omani notes.

I was surprised to see such an entirely different way of presenting a gift to someone who might be so special.

The way the high value notes were folded to make it attractive and integrated with a variety of beautiful flowers looked awesome. Its wrapping and the greeting notes attached were all nicely presented to make it so special.

A few customers spent time looking at the splendid designing technique of the sales person.

I thought about the person who appreciates such a skillful effort.

The most surprising gift I ever received was from a colleague during my Mumbai life some years ago.

The gift was a reminder for me, as it happened on my birthday, which I completely missed. 

Whether it is a perfume or a watch or a bunch of flowers, instead gifting someone always brings people closer than ever.

Ramachandran Nair, Oman

Animal versus human

Across the Emirates everybody is in a fit to lose weight. Some are giving away your kilos in gold, starting bicycle riding schemes, and other give-aways.  Yet, many are still chubby and their fat just won’t get lost no matter how much they run, jump or zumba.

My physician, Dr. Bilal, says, “Diet is sixty per cent of the weight loss process.”

Diet is the hardest part to maintain. One of my relatives came from the US and is now a vegan. Which means, “I don’t eat anything that has a mother or a father.” That along with the misconception that the national food of Arabs is falafel will get you about as far as the menu, since shops that do sell that fare are few and far between and they don’t deliver in my area.

So what gives?

My personal food imperialists, meaning, lobs a bunch of unwashed fruit and veggies, skin, seeds and all, “Because that’s how animals,” eat into a blender try to make you drink it. I am not an animal, so I refuse.

This miracle drink, however, has one side effect, it makes one irritable and grumpy. Blend in an eight-hour YouTube binges, of dangers of Monsanto and one might as well jump off the roof.

When I told them, about my favorite, veggie drink, avocado juice, the smugly replied, avocado is for guacamole. I guess, I will just stay my chubby, cheery, shawarma loving self.
Maryam Ismail

Yearly gimmick

A new year prompts us to make resolutions. It’s a powerful feeling to know you have a year ahead and can choose what you do with it. It’s a time for reflection about where you want to go next.

When we start talking and thinking about resolutions, we instinctively know they don’t work. Resolutions are mostly forgotten within a few days or weeks. So why bother?

The main reason some people think about New Year resolutions is because they want to change things in their life.

There are usual ones, such as I want to lose weight, change jobs or earn more money, but they tend to be the same ones you’ve had for years and are still incomplete.

My concern is that the resolution takes the place of the action. They think some magic words or promises will transform their lives, when we all know that the real transformational work is tough and usually involves sacrifice and unpleasant choices.

What about committing to New Year changes and actions, rather than resolutions?

Personally, every year I like to write out my resolutions on paper,  place them at a spot where I can revisit everyday. Having that constant visual reminder helps me stick to my goals throughout the year.

In 2013 and 2014, I had a whole long list, which I could not accomplish. In 2015, I  have only one resolution - to accomplish the goals of 2014 which I should have done in 2013 because I made a promise in 2012 and planned in 2011.
Zakir Jawed

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