Ethical education?

I have done my grad through distance education from University of Madras, and right now am enrolled in the masters prog at IGNOU. I hated the experience of the former and just am pushing myself through the masters at IGNOU.

The Indian system of distance education doesn’t satisfy the purpose nor is it as dynamic as it should be. There is no wonder that distance degrees do not hold much value, anyone and everyone can get an admission! I am specifically talking about the field of psychology. People who enter the field end up working to help other people and if their education is going to be sub-mediocre quality, we are going to have sub-mediocre quality people working in the field. Many students I know are pursuing a masters in Psychology with the plans to work with children. Every Tom, Dick and Harry wants to become a counselor, and sadly we have no quality control whatsoever by the government in this regard.

In the IGNOU masters we have to hand write assignments that will be a min of 50 sheets per subject. The assignments are nothing but a set of questions. I can not understand how that is practical for anyone who is opting for a distance course. Many applicants are not in the flow of writing so much, let’s face it we hardly write with our hands 1000s of words on a daily basis for anything!. They do not accept assignments that are typed. There’s something sad here. India isn’t the only country in the world providing a distance course, universities all over the world are. And they have assignments that are typed, well researched and intellectually igniting. Needless to say, many and I mean many students end up copying their assignments, or paying others to do them. I in-fact even received an sms from someone saying that they have the solved assignments and guides for IGNOU students. Now if that’s going to be the masters holder in the field of Psychology, I would be scared at the level of knowledge of the person.


We have so many things that need development in our country, but if the education doesn’t improve the future never will. Therapists with such qualifications open their own counseling centers, and once you have a center no one really cares how qualified you truly are!. And this is the truth.

University of Madras has still not issued my degree, provisional certificate etc. I have the TC/Course completion certificate and original marksheets, but that’s about it. I have to constantly write LETTERS to the university, to do what should be in their protocol. Not being in the same city as the university causes great communication disadvantages. Which is why I opted for IGNOU this time around. A full time education, even though was mouth watering for me, didn’t seem like it would be practical, I am at a point in my life where I do not trust Indian education nor the teachers to do a decent job. Going back to college surrounded by youngsters high on life, wouldn’t serve the purpose for me. Intellectually stimulating environment is difficult to find here, even in an intellectual field like psychology.

My assignments are due this month, and so far I only got around to making one answer. And am not interested in submitting assignments that are stupid to begin with.I want to indulge in education, not do it so that I can add it to my name later. I see myself as someone who is so well versed with the subject that I can converse about every aspect of the field; particularly history. May not write exams this year either.Want to be sure of everything.

The sad truth is, there are students out there, eager to learn, but the country isn’t giving them the attention and practical approach needed for them to flourish. And then we complain about brain drain!

What have been your experiences with education in your respective countries/fields?



Times running out!

That’s what I have been telling myself since I can remember. Since my marriage actually. 2008. All I could think of was how much I was missing out on what my peers were doing. Well they were studying, working hard on their education. And while I started my graduation in 2010 after Batool was born, I still felt bad that I was behind my peers.

It took me some time to realise that ‘better late than never’ is a good philosophy to adapt. Now while I pursue my masters, many of my friends have stopped at their graduation and are working. Working away, working hard. While many of them may have an ultimate direction, most of them are just caught up in the job circle. Where I wish to not be stuck for the rest of my life.

I have constantly found myself asking “what have you accomplished?” that question haunts me, while I do genuinely keep moving forward, there seems to always get lost, seem to always never be satisfied. I have realised that is because I do not want to do the ordinary. I keep myself busy and involved enough to be able to update my CV every month at-least with some professional development, I am constantly thinking about the next opportunity to do a course, or attend a workshop to broaden my horizon of possibilities. Few minutes ago I came across this article which talks about the true hard-work required during your twenties.

‘Once you become an Actual Rich Person, with a business drowning in opportunities but short on talent and you deal regularly in financial figures that contain more than one comma, you start to see how this works. It’s easy to have a successful business if you can find really smart people who are willing to do really hard work for you, in exchange for a high salary. But all these younger people seem to just want to sit around and network and have cocktails. All the hard workers already run their own company.’

Reading the above lines of the article made me realise that I have been wanting results way faster than it’s humanly possible. I have certain limitations and challenges that are exclusive to me. Life is difficult, and while I am still in my twenties it’s a safe enough zone to focus on hard-work and aim for results maybe in the 30s. I will turn 27 this July. The problem is to find that pause button, the ‘take a deep breath’ zone so that I am able to recharge and get back into the drift of things.

I think part of my understanding has to now be the fact that I can’t resist adding more and more responsibilities, and expectations on myself. It’s just how I am wired. I work very hard, exhaust myself and crave for a break, and then get back into the cycle of madness. But maybe this time the goals have to be clearer. Maybe now a timeline of achievement has to be marked. No matter what, Multi-tasking is a skill I have command over, the more I do, the more time I am able to make for more things, the more I become organised. The more stationery I have an excuse to buy 😉

Somewhere we all live under expectations from ourselves that are beyond our capacity. These could be related to our family responsibilities, work, education, everyday chores etc. The point is to master the art to edit out, be patient and be human in all of it. I guess this is something that will always be a part of my life, maybe I will never find a place in my life where I would be doing only one or two things without craving for more. At this point I believe accepting it as a positive thing is the only way to be happy about it.

Let there be sanity!!




Workshop weekend Part 1 of 2

This weekend has been about workshops. I enjoy attending workshops for several reasons, apart from the information and the main purpose of the workshop you get to network, meet people of the same field, which is inspiring.


It is also a great way for professional development, and helps especially if a certificate is provided. This is a two part post because I attended two, one on Saturday and one on Sunday. For me it’s all about exposure. I am going to be 27 this year and have the hunger to expose myself to as many things that interest me as I can. It’s amazing what all you can learn, and how your careers goals can get evolved.


Workshop 1 was on ‘mindulfness’, being a counselor this concept isn’t new to me, but I wanted to know more in detail. The main reason I went for it was; it was for counselors and teachers only. It wasn’t a life coaching type of class, it was about how you as a counselor/teacher can use mindfulness, practice it and positively affect the people you’re working with.

The workshop was organised by the Hyderabad Academy of Psychology and led by Liliana Goldschmidt. I got to understand the history of mindfulness, how it helps, and the various ways in which it can be implemented. Liliana had made us experience it with short breathing focused exercises, so that we understand what mindfulness is about, and the fact truly is that we can only take a client as far as we have gone with practicing it. So the more we do the better. For me it’s extremely important to take time out and think and focus on yourself. Mindfulness helps you unwind, and it’s free!. We also paired up and practiced not just making our partners do the exercise, but explain to them the concept. Even here I believe the more you understand it yourself the better you can explain it to another person.



The workshop was interactive from the beginning, and ended with feedback, certificate distribution, lunch and interaction with the attendees. Was nice to meet familiar faces, get introduced to new. Meeting familiar faces is a sign that you’re moving about enough in your circle! InshaAllah I hope to broaden my network with many such workshops. Dr.Diana had announced that HAP is planning for ‘continued education’ programs at HAP. It was a Saturday of learning something new, and just those exercises in the workshop were relaxing.

Let’s celebrate Passing the HAP course!

I finished my course at HAP!! Yayii!. Received the certificate of the same on Saturday 12th, And boy was that day hectic. I know what you’re thinking! I constantly talk about my busy schedules, I am sure it’s getting monotonous at this point. Keeping this in mind I shall move on to what I wanted to actually write about. I treated myself with some online shopping.


Note the excitement on the daughters face! That’s just ‘zoom into pricelessness moment’ She was roaring “Yayiiiii”



Appreciating oneself is a habit I am still developing, but when I found out that I was actually truly passing I had this intense feeling of treating myself. All the hard work, running around, studying, maintaining sanity while balancing the many responsibilities that I did, I just had to acknowledge my efforts. The icing on the cake was that I topped the last exam which was a paper submission! Felt great, that sense of accomplishment I have never felt, never topped anything! hehe

Anyway so this is what I did, I bought some make-up, a wallet, and shoes (which are on the way).



The experience of the course was great, in one word I would describe the course ‘insightful’ apart from the academic learning that took place you really do get to explore yourself, and become more aware of your behaviour and that of others. I have met some really special people, from various walks of life, women who inspire me and will continue to be part of my life. Even though I didn’t perform to my potential, there’s a lot I have learned to do better in the future in other ventures in my life.


Dr.Diana is a great teacher, and an inspiring role model, for her high ethical standards of practice, passion for her field, and the unconditional positive regard she gives to us as her students. I highly recommend this course for all students who are in the field of psychology to broaden their view of the field, and get exposure to new thinking and learning.

The next target is to wind up my PGDiploma from IHMH. That should be a call for another mini shopping spree I guess!

An update in pictures

I have ideas, and think ‘oh I should blog about this!’ and then that mental note remains just that-a mental note.

Days have been flying by, and I have not changed, keep piling up more things to my schedule. It will take me a lot of time to truly make my mind stop rationalising a mad schedule for myself.

Anyway, I was taking pics, and while they may not be super interesting, it will make up a decent enough blog post for you guys. Some thing is better than nothing, isn’t it?

Took quite a few selfies;






Captured some moments of the daughter enjoying at the play area at school;


Got her a haircut on Guru Nanak Jayanti holiday on Wed! Oh how this one enjoys them….

Admired her sleeping…..It’s actually therapeutic, I always imagine what she must be dreaming about. When she was little she would smile in her sleep…


Admired the greenery at school…I spend so much time in my room with students counseling all day, I didn’t notice the lovely green plants all over the entrance. Had to take pics!

Did some colouring, trying to find things to relax me, getting out of the house is not a ready option. Plus my busy schedule doesn’t allow me to be able to do that. My HAP course ends in a week, I shall be having more time after that!



I had ordered The Story of Psychology, after being reommendation by Dr.Diana Monteiro (My teacher at HAP), waiting to finish off with the David Sedaris book before I indulge into this.


On Thursday Mir Imran the scientist visited the school to interact with our students. It was not my working day, and I just wanted to sleep in, had a few things on the agenda (I must admit), I somehow got myself to school and well, was inspired. The preceding day I had a ginormous mood swing, and desperately needed some inspiration. Was glad I attended the session, came to realise something crucial that has given me insight.


Decorated Batools school binder. Feel like a proud mom! Loved using all the glitter, was so fun!


Distributed inter-madrasa competition certificates to students on Sunday, below I give one to my daughter!


Hmm, that’s about it….Probably will post a rambling post soon…..

What have you been upto?


My white and clarity

It’s really odd when you’re thinking about something and suddenly you read about the same. There’s an overwhelming feeling that takes over you. I have experienced two such situations or phenomena recently. One of which I experienced just today. But we shall go in the order of occurrence for respect.

1. I have always been the loud one, when it came to enjoying, having fun, motivating someone, but never when it came to problems that were my own. I like to solve them on my own, I like to be patient, and be supportive via space and silence. I pick up on energy very quickly, I know by just walking past a person how they’re feeling. This sense gets heightened when I know the person. This is an area of my potential, and I believe that people like me bring comfort, there’s a reason why I am able to be a good counselor and comforter for students and friends alike. I will be the quiet, patient ear. And I have been treated unjustly. And well in the midst of all the sad drama I came across this quote of Ernest Hemingway, and it was the pure expression of what I was going through. And somehow it made me feel good that a man (especially) is capable of understanding an experience women face on a regular basis, especially in family life.

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2. My maternal grandfather was a spiritually blessed man, people used to come to him for all sort of ailments and he used to recite prayers for them and comfort them. I never asked him any future telling questions, I didn’t want the ‘grandparentness’ to go away from him, because no matter what he would be my nana first. Anyway, once he has asked me a question, he asked what it is that I want to see the most in life. And I responded spontaneously as it was something I had thought of previously and I knew the exact answer. I said, I want to see a lot of ice, all white around me, me in the center of white purity. I related that to ice, as I have never experienced snow. And his response was, well it was more of a nod and appreciating bafflement. He didn’t say anything, but he looked impressed. I didn’t ask ‘why?’ because that would break the ‘grandparetness’ code I had set up in my head. Today I was going through the 600 odd pics from last evenings madrasa event, and I saw this one pic and went, ‘wow! this is exactly the white purity and surrounded by whiteness I was talking about, and there’s no ice!’. And a feeling of complete beauty took over me, I smiled into the picture and tears came to my eyes. I found my white.


I hope in life we are able to find the courage to not just try to find the truth but fight for it. So many of us live under the pressure of a conformist society, just trying to get through the day that; we forget that there’s a higher purpose to achieve. I have found my white, and I have faith in those who believe in moving forward, and aren’t afraid to stand for the truth. Stand up for what’s wrong, and most importantly refuse to be silent sufferers,because we know for a fact that; not all will realise that our patience, our silence and our strength is actually meant for the change, and not acceptance of dwelling in the problems.

Happy strength mommies!

children till they're 18

It’s childrens day, and I thought today I shall share some information on how we can sustain the childhood for our children for long. These days children are going through problems that only adults faced, these range from health to emotional. Childhood diabetes, stress, anxiety, insomnia, fear etc. are just few examples of problems of todays children. So lets ponder over the following points, and remember that they are children till they’re adults!

1. Educate yourself- Psychologists all over the world are doing tremendous research on development during childhood. As parents and caregivers it’s important to always keep knowledge of children and their innate age-wise capabilities. This is important because it will help us not put too much pressure on the child. Familiarity with milestones is the key to providing the right care, responsibility, boundaries etc to your child. Resources like parenting magasines online or print are helpful, self-help books, or if you’re enthusiastic enough you could read texts books on life-span development, or child psychology.10173529_863366093697014_5291794490731707564_n

2. Birth order blues- Children struggle greatly when a sibling arrives. Sibling rivalry is common, but what is even more common is bias treatment by parents and other adults. The little one no matter how old he gets will be the little one, the eldest no matter how young he is is burdened with being the elder. Take a second and think, no matter how much we try to not give in, we do compare our kids. And this lets others compare them openly too. This phenomenon is undeniably common in India. Unsolicited advice is the expertise of elder ladies, especially the grandparents. Remember that no matter how many kids you have, you have to treat them according to their age, not their birth order. It is not the responsibility of the eldest to be the role model, it’s the responsibility of the parents to be role models. Putting that level of pressure on a child will only make him aggressive, lose confidence in himself, become anxious and self-demotivating. Let me bring this into perspective, take a tiny moment, and ponder over this:

In class 2 at XYZ school, the students are all in the age bracket of 6-7years. There are two friends both who are 6 years of age, but R is he youngest amongst his siblings and T is the eldest amongst his. Both these kids are treated very differently at home. Yet, they’re both the same age, possess more or less the same capacities of normal 6 year old, have similar interests, want to play and be active. We need to start looking at the big picture here. Our children are what their age represents, it’s not their choice to be born first or second or third, or alone.

3. Let them play- It’s important to give exposure, set boundaries and schedules, equally important is providing child time to play. And this play shouldn’t be restrictive, it shouldn’t be like a class, it should be free play, the child should choose his/her toys/games, do whatever he wants to do, let them create that mess, help them clean up after wards, but don’t program their mind to believe being a “good” boy or a “good” girl means doing nothing you like. Parents are very concerned about play time, and regard it as useless, but that’s not the case. Children learn the fastest through play, and they show their true personalities and talents when they’re not being penalised for every choice they make.

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4. The future adults- Children are the future of our society. They should be shown positivity when it comes to adulthood. Children who are surrounded by adults who are quarreling, or news that’s blasting about the horrible crimes committed, scare them. No child will look forward to becoming an adult if he starts associating negativity to it. Explaining to them about difficulties, and importance of faith, values, societal responsibilities etc will enable them to understand that life as adult will be challenging but it doesn’t need to be regretful.

5. No gender bias please- Snatching childhood from one genders not fair, girls are made to act older, more responsible from an earlier age. It is true that they emotionally and physically mature earlier, but that doesn’t mean they should start taking up adult like responsibilities. Responsibilities should be age and capability specific not gender specific. Simple chores like cleaning the room/closet, or helping set up supper shouldn’t be only a girls responsibility, the boys in the house too should help. Boys too shouldn’t be burdened with outside work, it’s good to allot some simple chores like a grocery run, but the house shouldn’t depend on a child, adults are the pillars of a home. Even while play girls should be allowed to play outside, just like boys. If the environment is unsafe for the girl, it’s unsafe for the boy too. They’re both precious and hold great relevance to your life, and none should feel they are inferior or superior to the other.

6. Look back- Make time to think about your childhood, what you liked and disliked, how you want to make the experience better for your children. Try to ponder over the methodology used to convey messages in your time, understand that not all are applicable in the todays world. Make a deliberate effort to bridge the generation gap between you and your children. Be humble enough to forgive, and stern enough to set boundaries, communicate and reason with logic.

I could go on and on, but the above 6 points are worth mentioning the most. Childhood is a very significant period of anyone’s life time, it’s the base or personality. Memories created and experienced at this stage have a lasting impression. Lets enable our children to have the best that they can, and have beautiful memories to give them hope for the future.

Shopping and book update

I went out, a very deserving outing alone…My friend wasn’t available as well, so I just had to hang out and chill away from the daughter. And well, I ended up spending. Has a few things on the list but got carried away…Lets dig in shall we?

I was at city center, and wanted to get a drum for the little one, she didn’t get the concept of it while doing homework the weekend before, So i thought she needs to experience it, even though it would cause great noise pollution. Picked it up at the toy store there.



Also picked up two white hair bands, a lunch box she’s broken hers, and also broker her water bottle, that’s second one this school year already!

Next stop Max, the daughter has suddenly grown tall, and needed a little addition to the wardrobe

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The green sleeveless hoodie is reversible! This is her first pair of jeans, loved the tiny print detail and the colour I was crossing my fingers they’d fit and they did, wonderfully…

Dropped by health and glow, had a very strict list on here, but I also sneakily picked up a new body bath/scrub and a bubble bath for Batool from Baby Biotique. Frankly I didn’t know Baby Biotique existed!!The surprise comes from the fact that I do enjoy using the Biotique products myself. I haven’t tried it yet, still have a little bit left from the MEE MEE one. Will do a comparison post on them when I do try.


The scrub however is phenomenal! Yummy! smells like the first lip gloss I owned when I was in school it was called ‘wet lips’..Yum Yum….


Got myself a key chain by daffodils from Crosswords, picked up a cheap water bottle for the daughter who is rowdy!


Coming to my book I placed an order on flipkart for few things, and one of them was my book!! ‘On Dublin street’ by Samantha Young…It’s an adult romance novel, but with a proper story, and an ending, 300 odd pages finished it in 2 nights….Great read, easy, refreshing, nice. I would love to see it as a movie, with the right screenplay and cast this movie will be a great one for sure.


I’ve decided to try out Indian authors, and hence I have ordered ‘Sorry, you’re not my type‘ by Sudeep Nagarkar, it’s cheap 150 but Flipkarts having a discount on it (Unlike Dublin street which costed 950 nucks!!) and sounds like a fine book. I’ve per-ordered Chetan Bhagats new book ‘Half girlfriend’ as well.

I also ordered a reference book, I am having a growing inclination toward learning disabilities even though I wouldn’t dare tread that path as career, it would help me understand it better, explain it better to parents/caregivers/teachers/students etc. and also for my present diploma.


It’s by Meenakshi Dave and I highly recommend it to Indian parents.

Also on the flipkart order was my daughter book ‘Bruno put your toys away’, already have the rest of the books from the series, she desperately wanted it, asked me several times and I couldn’t find it at crosswords, so paid double the price because of shipping and bought it.

bruno put your toys away

I am trying to get her TV time limited, even though she doesn’t watch any cartoons, we don’t have cable, we just download selected rhymes and make CDs for her. I have to get it down to 1 hour a day with a min half gap in between. So inorder to do that I have increased book time, now we have two sessions and we go through the charts I had blogged about previously. She’s enjoying the attention too, in the spirit of entertainment sans TV I ordered a finger painting set in the flipkart order…It arrived today evening, and well she enjoyed a lot and it got messy but it took a good 45 mins off the day, and the paints almost are over, Im going to buy more paint….

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As you can see, it comes with shaped sponges, tiniest pots of paint, few plain white sheets and few images to paint. For 210 plus 40 shipping I don’t recommend it, you can just buy a box of paint and give them to your child to finger paint. Nothing special in the box, a great gift though, if you have a birthday to attend want to budget it under 500! It’s not worth it otherwise.

Well that’s about it….purchased two pairs of shoes online as well…







Haven t taken a pic of the other one 😉 oops! Will note it in an outfit post….Need to get those done more often….What have you been upto?



Why juggle so many duties? and update on study life

I’ve always been someone who has to have my plate full. I need to be constantly doing something, constantly looking forward to a project, anything. Being in Hyderabad has taught be the importance of being this busy. It’s the only way you can avoid politics, gossip chains, your mind won’t allow you time for those thoughts to creep in. I am hence, allergic to being free. Frankly I rather complain about ‘not having enough time’ to complete the many tasks I have at hand, than be free enough to meddle in others’ business.

Having said that, I shall give you an update on my latest addition, my one year diploma in School Psychology started in July, and it’s from IHMH. I am over the moon about this one, it’s nothing like how my graduation was. The diploma has been drafted in such a way that you are compelled to study and it pushes the student to explore their potential. I am totally psyched.


Those are the first two books that arrived through mail. I LOVE studying, it’s the best feeling in the world. I regard myself as a student for life, I want to constantly keep studying, and it’s not for the  certificates, but the triggering of mind, and truly learning as a student. Plus I get to shop for stationery and study supplies which I love too! 😉

So why be this busy? There are times when I want people around me to process the many duties and responsibilities I juggle, give me some space, try to understand the tornado that runs on my head on a regular basis. But then I have to remind myself that I chose this type of life, I decided to keep this busy, I believe I can do it. Expecting from people to go out of their way to understand is irrational, because no matter what they can never comprehend the importance of these things in my life. People (in India) typically have the attitude of end everything after marriage, ‘you don’t need to study’ especially when you have a kid. But the fact is those are not the reasons why people should study in the first place, education is about overall development of your personality, so logically it should never end.

I am the first to encourage anyone irrespective of their age to keep pursuing some form of education, even if it is in their hobby areas, (crafts class, a culinary course, reading clubs) no matter what you will be afford to get something included into your life. And just being a part of something so fruitful is pure joy.

That’s the reason why I juggle, I feel 24 hours are meant to accomplish more than a few tasks each day. And with experience I’ve realised that; the more you include into your day the more you feel there’s time for more activities. There’s no excuse. 24 hours are a great responsibility we have towards ourselves, there’s always time for more, Always.