Living in FOMO

See I didn’t know how to describe this feeling till I came across few weeks ago, FOMO. That’s what my twenties have been about. And while I slowly reach the end of my 29th year of life, that’s how I can describe my twenties.

Hindsight is a terrible thing, it can make you feel guilty, smart, stupid, naive etc. And I can’t help but look back at my twenties when I am so close to ending a significant era of my life. There are many TEDx talks on this issue, make twenties your everything, or twenties aren’t everything. Everyone has a point of view, and a lot of those points seem logical, reasonable, understandable, but nevertheless don’t calm my soul.

You see I didn’t ever make a concrete plan for myself, I was only 19 when I got married. To be honest, I didn’t even know the significance of having a plan in the first place. But with time, I realised that the sane thing is to be the best that you can. Achieve what you’re capable of, and hustle for that.

My twenties, I lived in FOMO, and when I asked myself what exactly those things were. I strangely, with a broken heart had to succumb to accepting that I actually was in the FOMO on my twenties. It doesn’t get disappointing than that. Nothing I have done in my twenties has given me leverage for my thirties. Isn’t that what it’s all about in the end? Everything we do consciously has to eventually yield some fruit. None of the seeds I sowed, are worth jazz for my future. Highlights include a degree via distance in Psychology, a career stream I am no longer interested in because it requires dedication and higher education. I started a Sunday School, and Yes, Allah will reward me in continuity for this venture. However due to my health I’m not able to go as regularly as I used to. I spent 6.5 years married, trying to make things work, only to end up divorcing. Wasted the crucial early twenties in this. Got married again, and have a baby boy too. And as we all know babies bring a big gigantic comma if not full stop to your life. The struggle of adjusting to a new home life, a new partner, a new marriage is on another level. A simultaneous custody case in court for the daughter, drains energy out. I won the case and have her, and working on damage control.

I am not anti-struggle. I just want a different struggle now. I want a struggle that takes me somewhere, a struggle that has some promise. Otherwise I will remain in this state of unrest, irritated, in quarter life crisis, constantly confused, pulled on one side spiritually, and struggling to survive through every worldly issues.

The highs and lows are extreme now, emotionally it’s draining to be a mom, add to that someone who actually wants to be more than that. Simply because I have the potential. How does one get clarity, when the clouds of disappointment are always around? Where do you go for support when you have only one friend in the city? How much can you burden others with your same unresolved questions?

One thing I know for sure is that the thirties shouldn’t have to be this way. But unless I figure things out, I will be aimless squandering like a nomad. What do we do, to not live in FOMO?

Dr.Peter Kranz on Psychodrama at Roshni Counseling Center

Exposure, that’s what I think about every time there is a workshop in the city. Seminars and workshops held specifically for the people of psychology field help us in building network, sharing our knowledge and learning a tonne of new things along the way. I was super excited when Dr.Jayanti shared the invite of a session on psychodrama hosted by Roshni Counseling Center by Dr.Peter Kranz (professor at University of Texas Rio Grande Valley) who is visiting from USA.

Psychodrama 3.jpg

Having done storytelling, I was all the more interested, I want to explore how drama, and storytelling can help in healing. Psychodrama is mainly aimed at bringing about insight by enacting past behaviours. It is a spontaneous technique of psychotherapy, and can help people of all ages.

Psychodrama 1

For me the experience of being in a seminar like such helps in building insight. It’s not just for the purpose of learning, as psychologists or therapists/counselors it’s important to constantly be on a journey of developing insight about yourself. We are complex, ever evolving creatures, a mystery for us to resolve forever. Me being interested in research, I make a conscious effort to observe people around me, understand myself. Psychodrama helps in that, as a group therapy technique it’s interesting fun and has a seamless approach to addressing issues which otherwise would be difficult to deal with. Psychodrama was founded by Jacob L.Moreno.

The most insightful moment for me was through a simple activity wherein we were to pick an age where we were the most happiest. Chairs were placed in a line, each representing an age  (10,20s,30s,40s etc). And for me the happiest and fun was 10 and most difficult was the 20s. Well I am still in my 20s so don’t have anywhere to go beyond that, but hearing the peoples reasons for choosing the age groups they did made me realise there’s a long life still for me to lead. The lovely women, so empowered who were present in the session were talking about how satisfied they are in their late 30s or 40s, and for most 20s has been a period of struggle. So I am not alone!. And now I look forward to growing older and experiencing my 30s and learning more, and achieving more in life. Don’t know why I had created this mental block that the 20s are the time to achieve everything, and that everything in life will go downhill from there. The beauty of it all is that this activity was not a true session, we were all strangers, and it was Dr.Kranz’s demonstration of initial activities, and but how it helped me, and many others is phenomenal. This shows that psychodrama in its essence has a lot to give to participants.

Will definitely be exploring psychodrama and also a person to mention here is Susan Perrow who is a storyteller and writer who helps parents, teachers, and psychologists in healing patients through stories. It was through Deepa Kiran that I came to know about her, and am going to learn more about her techniques of healing. Her website has plenty resources and information on what she does.

If you’re a therapist, there’s another session on the 3rd of June, hosted by Roshni Counseling Center at 9AM, led by Dr.P.Kranz on stress management. You can simply register yourself by calling the centers numbers: 040 66661117/1118.

Workshop weekend Part 2 of 2

Sunday, day two of workshop was organised by Story Arts India at the Birla Library. Led by international storyteller Deepa Kiran the workshop was on ‘The art of storytelling’.  I have always been interested in storytelling, book readings, and was ecstatic when Mr.Minhaj (Principal of Focus High School) shared the workshop flier on our schools WhatsApp group. I just HAD TO GO. It was a small group of 18 participants, and was packed with activities from the get go.

The whole experience from 9am to 5pm took me back to my school days, when I used to participate in drama, elocution competitions and other such activities. It really felt like I was back in school. The way of thinking completely changes when you’re in a room filled with people who have only one goal; to tell a story. Truly there’s much art involved in telling a story. I was blown away by how gripping listening to a story from someone as talented as Deepa can be. Her story of 45 mins just went by like a breeze. Everyone was so engrossed, it’s phenomenal. Several activities were planned for day, which helped interact with the group. There was a mix of teachers, media artists, parents who attended the workshop. I have to point out how amazing it is when teachers take out time to better their classroom environment by learning a new art form.

story arts

I didn’t realise how much my overall mindset regarding my future plans would change. Our life is filled with possibilities; we can mold everything we learn to benefit us and the people around us. We need not feel restricted, we not be restrained by our age, something as simple as telling a fun story can rejuvenate all our senses and those of the listeners. Being part of any art is amazing, and helps us connect with our souls.

It was a Sunday well spent for sure!