“ Have you looked at that Tanu in our neighborhood, she shows talent in studies, dance, drawing but you just want to play and wish to be a cricketer”
“That Swati is almost same as your age, she cooks delicious food, while your rotis take the form of the maps of some countries in the globe”
Just heard these statements a day before yesterday and few thoughts cropped in the mind. Suddenly the door bell rang. When I opened the door, I found my school friend Madhavi standing at the door with pale face, dark circles around her eyes, and also appeared weak. I shocked to see her. Was she the same Madhavi, full of laughter, very talkative, confident, always pursuing a dream of being a popular dancer?
While offering her a cup of tea, we began chitchatting with each other. We had been meeting after a long gap. To be precise, first time after our marriage. Madhavi questioned me, how I was able to manage my household chores and still be a professional counselor. I she thought I must be very tired. I agreed that I do feel tired but then my family members help me. I am able to do both of these only due to their support. She also added that unless the family members help, we cannot do everything. She too was helped by her family members. While I was listening to her, I realized that though she said that she was helped by her family members, her body language, her eyes were full of tears, suggesting something different. While chitchatting she suddenly burst in to tears. I offered her a glass of water and asked her what the matter was. I confided her that she can share with me without any hesitation. She then expressed herself saying, that she was unaware, why nowadays she was unable to perform a single task well, she often committed mistakes and hence has lost her interest in doing anything. She often has disputes with her husband related to this issue. She does not have a sound relation with her mother-in-law. Her sister-in-law is ever ready to detect faults in her work. All often taunt her. Further, even her kids do not obey her. The kids comment that their mother keeps irritating them. She did not know what was wrong with herself, what is making her commit mistakes, why is she losing interest in everything. Sometimes she felt that she was suffering from a mental disorder. After discussing the matter for a long time with her, I got a clarification that she had developed such a strong inferiority complex about herself, as she was being compared with her family members, relatives that she had totally lost her self-confidence. In an attempt to be like all of them, she had lost her own personal identity.
Many times, our parents and other relatives directly or unknowingly compare us with others since childhood. It may be that the underlying motive the parents have behind it is that their kids also perform something good, nice and grand. But the motive conveys the meaning, that if I do not be like him/her, I am nowhere and good-for- nothing and with this belief and habit, we grow up. As we are always being compared with others, we too start watching ourselves from the others point of view and keep trying to be like them. This manifests in ourselves the negative feelings like feelings of inferiority complex, lack of self-confidence, irritation, frustration, confusion, restlessness and the intensity of these increases day by day. This gives stress to us. Consequently, we forget our talents and skills. We forget the “me’ within ourselves, feel frustrated and insecure all the time and are likely to fall prey to depression.
Every individual is different because we carry these different traits in ourselves everywhere. Without being affected with the comparison and stress, if we look after our personal traits, care of the talents and skills within us, we can certainly prove our independent existence in any domain. It is necessary to look at us using ‘Our’ own view rather than other’s perspective.