• 11 Apr
    Oyindrila Basu

    'Ki & Ka' Have Equal Roles In Making Up A Good Home, A Good Relationship And A Good Society.

    ki and ka arjun kapoor



    I begin my argument with reference to the above article which I was going through today. I have been reading through the comments below, and I really feel that each of them is telling the truth. The article I don't think intends to humiliate women who are good cooks, however, consequentially it does so. In today's era, we cannot write with one-biased attitude. A glorification of an office-going women as against a cook in the kitchen, will no longer be considered highly feminist and empowering. Cooking is an art, and those women or men who love to do it are great 'artists', (no wonder chefs are one of the highest paid professionals) and when you include this art in making a good home, it is equally worthy of making money for survival. Hence a woman who is making aloo-mutter is not wasting her life in the sweats of kitchen, she is actually mastering a great art. And of course, the feeling of getting appreciated by your family is a great experience. But yes, it is true that society has never appreciated the efforts of a good housewife, but have urged her to be one, by mastering domesticity, and the above article is doing nothing better than our society. I agree with the article on one point; if you do not want to learn something, societal call shouldn't force you for it; not everybody should learn everything. Very true. However, be it a man or a woman, everybody should have their hands on household necessities, because you never know when you need to do it yourself. And homemade food is always healthier and tastier (if well made) than outside food, if husband or wife can cook, hence it is always better to learn something new (even American nutritional departments advice taking homemade food, if you have an option). But again it is a matter of choice. If you want to learn cooking and household works, you will be independent of your maid-concept, if you don't want to learn, you don't like it, then you should not do it.

    But one question to the writer of the above linked article: Will you accept a husband who is not professionally successful and doesn't even want to be so???

    Watched Ki & Ka by R. Balki, at AMC Methuen 20, USA, yesterday, and really liked the concept of putting equivalent emphasis and importance to each role, that of a breadwinner and a homemaker. Kareena and Arjun played their roles with exceptional individualism; There is nothing wrong if a woman is ambitious, there is nothing wrong if a woman chooses his career over child bearing as a married lady, there is no harm if a woman chooses to be successful in corporate field and a man in the house. However, the unusual factor was not that a husband is doing household work; there are various unusual factors in the movie which helps correct our prejorative notions on a man's role and a woman's role in a household. 


    1. Arjun Kapoor disdains the idea that if a woman is not ambitious and chooses to be a housewife means "woh ghar pe baithi hai", no, she is not sitting at home, in fact, giving more of physical labour to make a home worth living for a normal man.

    2. The husband doesn't feel he does something great by supporting his wife. He wants to be free of competition, and hence loves his job as a cook and homemaker.

    3. The tussle is not between man and woman; the conflict is between the breadwinner and the financially dependent homemaker. Socially, whoever earns the money in the family, is the hero, and enjoys the limelight, no-one appreciates the efforts of the home-maker, (the above referred article is no-way different from our general propaganda) Ki & Ka navigates this simple, but apparently invisible fact and also takes a step ahead to correct it, by giving importance to the house husband as well, thus, also exposing the reality that breadwinner does feel jealous of his/her dependent homemaker, though it is not right to be so, independent of gender.

    4. Also breaks the stereotype that there can be a working woman, but no non-working man. It is worth appreciating how Kia sets an assertive and appreciative example by accepting a man and loving him for what he is, irrespective of his money or social status.

    Coming back to the referred article. As I said, it is always good to have some experience with household work for your self safety, irrespective of gender. Foreign do not encourage maids or labour of that kind, and there are places like Norway, Nordic where you do not get ready-made foods as well so easily. Then?However, I cook, I write good articles, I read books on various subjects including religious literacy, I work professionally as a writer, proof reader and reviewer, and I believe being an expert in Chinese and Italian cuisines doesn't diminish my wisdom, as I continue to have healthy political, social and literary arguments with my husband. It is not obvious that everybody should know everything, but it is obvious that you need food to live, and clean the bed and the house to survive, and you cannot deny it, so no comparison with learning household works and other skills like MBA, dance or photography.


    Responses 1

    • Oyindrila Basu
      Oyindrila Basu   Sep 04, 2016 09:23 PM

      Absolutely... It actually portrays a balance of roles, and goes beyond the cliched discussion of gender bias; there is no feminist outrage as to why a girl should sacrifice her career for household and why not a man etc. etc. These arguments and questions are old enough without an answer... Ki and Ka shows a balance in mentalities, something which is really normal and the best way to progress.

  • 09 Sep
    Trisha Ray

    Introverts vs. extroverts: Ways to improve public speaking skills for both

    extrover and introvert

    Public speaking: a nightmare or an exciting challenge? Either of this can come to the mind of a person who has been or will have to do public speaking.

    Public speaking almost always causes stress. For some it may be eustress and for some distress. Some people believe that this difference is connected to the 2 continuum of personality: Introversion and Extraversion.

    Introverts are mostly not good in public speaking while extroverts generally are good at it. This statement, even though, seems outright logical, is not always true. Both may not always excel in public speaking and again both might. There is no absolute causal relation found between the two as yet.

    Introverts are people who tends to shrink from social contacts and to become preoccupied with their own thoughts and Extraverts are people who are concerned more with practical realities than with inner thoughts and feelings.

    However, with regards to public speaking, both have scope for improvement. Here are a few ways in which both can improve their public speaking skills:


    For Introverts:

    If you’re an introvert, you may be terrified or very anxious about publicly speaking. But you have some great benefits as well that you can put to use.

    Most likely you will be very well planned in advance and will have well practiced your parts.

    Also,  you will not be attracted to the razzmatazz and will be more focused on delivering. Other introverts in the crowd too who are scared themselves of speaking up will be able to empathize with you more and will be less anxious themselves to ask you questions.

    However, in order to outshine certain people in the crowd, you can adopt the ways below:


     Keep your focus on your speech:

    Remember to focus always makes you less nervous. Instead of thinking or filling yourself with nervousness, focus more on the job in hand, i.e., speaking. Always remember there will be people sitting in the crowd who will empathize with your situation and be attentive listeners. So instead of worrying about how you perform, think about how you will deliver.


     Pretend the audience is your close group of friends:

    Instead of thinking of the actual people sitting in the crowd, pretend and think of them as your own personal group of friends in front of whom you freely express and speak in general times. Conjuring them in your mind in this manner, will help you feel less anxious and will keep the momentum going. You will automatically feel more comfortable in opening yourself up.


    Wearing the mask:

    Sometimes the best idea is to put on the mask of an outgoing personality, even if you are not. This requires practice too, but it’s not an impossible task. Observe someone who is good at public speaking and pick up certain aspects you can adopt. Put on the mask and deliver to your best.


    Create an atmosphere wherein the audience can relate to you:

    Research the crowd you will be facing beforehand, if possible. That will give you a perspective on who all you will be facing. Once you know that, start with something that will connect the audience with you. Once the audience starts relating to you, it will be easier for you and the feeling of tension in you will reduce.



    If you are an Extrovert, it’s very likely that you will be comfortable speaking in front of an audience.

    It might even be an adrenaline rush for you. But the challenge most likely for you will be in keeping the audience connected with yourself.

    Also the chances of getting carried away with the adrenaline at that moment and experiencing a shift in focus or getting diverted to a different topic might be there.

    In order to avoid such situation and to stand out the best among other speakers, the ways mentioned below can be adopted:


    Don’t run away with yourself and Make a double – end conversation:

    Make sure you connect with the crowd and is not a one sided speaker. If you keep rambling, your crowd may not find any interest in your speech and it will end up disrupting the end purpose.

    A double- end conversation, is one where there is a reciprocal relation between the audience and the speaker. The reciprocation can be verbal or non-verbal, but in public speaking, having a reciprocal relationship adds value to public speaking. Make sure that the audience is reacting to what you are saying, either verbatim or through their expressions. That enriches the entire public speaking experience.


     Curb it down a little:

    It is possible that you might be having a lot of energy and enthusiasm, but it is not always necessary that everyone in the audience too will have the same level of energy. So go back, observe and reflect on what is exactly required to motivate the audience and to make the them feel connected.


     Focus on the pauses as well:

    Make sure you pause in between your speeches. Give some breather time to both yourself and the audience. It helps to gauge the audience’s reaction at that moment. Pauses also gives you some time to think if the direction of your speech is heading the right way or it’s going off- course. This affects the quality of your speech.


     Keep a track of your time:

    Often with Extroverts, the timings go off limit because of their enthusiasm of connecting with the larger audience. It is again very important to have a time limit to have an enriching public speaking experience. Make sure you are wearing a watch on your hand or you have a wall clock nearby. This will help you keep track of your time.


    Since public speaking is something we normally don’t do as part of our daily living (except for some people whose job description demands it), it is natural that we have to pick up certain skills to be able to perfect it. Practice and balanced confidence are the keywords here.

    It is evident that you practice before any public speaking session, whether you are an introvert or an extrovert and have the self-confidence to believe that you can give your best performance every time.

    Go ahead! Give yourself that push and overcome your fears. Public speaking, I assure you, is not that tough. At least it is not life threatening.

    Image source

  • 10 Apr
    Oyindrila Basu

    Why do we feel a physical pain when someone rejects us?

    why do we feel physical pain after rejection

    Rejection can be fatalistic to emotional sensations. We hate being rejected socially, personally or professionally. But Rejection can have deeper impacts than mere psychological set back or hurt emotions.

     Scientific researches have proved that brain identifies rejection equivalent to a physical pain.

     Which means the way our brain reacts to a physical injury, ailment or illness, the same reaction it gives to a rejection.

    • Rejection affects the same areas of the brain as that of physical injury- MRI studies have shown that neurologically, brain reacts in a very similar manner to rejection as it does for physical pain, hence rejection hurts so much.
    • Social Rejection played a major role in our evolution- it is said that ostracism or being thrown out of your own clan was equal to death sentence because man as a social being could not survive for long. So it is assumed that brain learned to take rejection alerts as something very serious since then and this characteristic has evolved in human biology as an impact of social norm.
    • Rejection is more painful because memory supports it- we are prone to rethink and relive the instances of rejection oftener than we do for a physical pain. Physical pain can be diluted with pain killers and medicines and doesn’t last long though the initial impact is high, but rejection has the same kind of impact on the brain while it doesn’t get cured easily. Our brain reminds us of the memories time and again.
    • Rejection hurts our self-esteem- we lose confidence as an individual which can be shattering for personality development.
    • When self-respect dissolves, the need to belong is gone- rejection affects our need to belong very badly. We all want to be a part of a group and acceptance will boost our survival, but rejection hurts that area and we cease to live; we may choose to end ourselves as well.
    • Rejection causes anger- anger is too dangerous. It is not only an emotional state; it severely affects bodily health as well. When a person is too angry he can hurt himself or others. Anger can also cause chronic headache issues due to damage of brain tissues.

    However, as rejection is treated as a medical cause by the body, it has its own treatment strategies.

    When the body experiences physical pain, the brain releases chemical opioids into the empty space between neurons, which “dampens” pain signals.

    Dr David T. Hsu of University of Michigan Medical School had carried out a research where people who are more resilient to social situations were studied.

    However, people with depression and social anxiety may face a lack of this adaptability. It was observed “Individuals who scored high for the resiliency trait on a personality questionnaire tended to be capable of more opioid release during social rejection, especially in the amygdala,” which means that “opioid release in this structure during social rejection may be protective or adaptive,” said the doctor.

    Acetaminophen (Tylenol) can also help reduce the emotional pain of rejection was proved by psychologists, which further proves that rejection as equal to physical pain hence it can be cured with pain-killer pills.

    Hence the next time you feel that rejection hurts a lot, there is nothing to get worried, it is quite natural as per our biological processes. 

    References 1 2 

  • 09 Apr
    Oyindrila Basu

    Multiple Personality Disorder And Human Beings.

    multiple personality disorder

    "When I came back to myself I'd be exhausted. I never knew where I'd been or what I'd done, so I would have to look for clues, like a bag in the car or leftovers from a restaurant. It was amazing, but I accepted it."—Karen Overhill.

    This is what usually happens to a person having alter egos, i.e. several selves, or many personalities in one person. A person behaves as a complete different person in different situations, where he or she has a different name, place of birth and profession for each exclusive situation; he or she forgets the real self and starts acting in the shoes of his or her that personality or ego that emerges as dominant. Scientifically, this is a problematic mental health issue which is called Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD) or recently also termed as Dissociative Identity Disorder.

    The severity of the illness can be judged from the above referred case where an American woman claims to possess 17 alter egos which she sketches out with the help of a psychiatrist. Each personality has a different age, sex and name and she recognizes each one of them; though whenever she is someone else, other than Ms. Overhill, she remembers nothing of what she does during the phase, after she comes back to normal self.

    During a trip to a Las Vegas casino, Ms Overhill's mind "went somewhere else" and was stunned to find the $25 she had arrived with had turned into $2,500, she reported to Daily mail.com.

    Generally, DID can be the result of suppressed emotions which may have occurred in a person due to some life term trauma, and this mental ailment is kind of a coping mechanism which a person adopts in order to vent out the drastic effect of the trauma on another personality of herself, and feels safe and secure that she has been exempted of the brutality.

    However, this is a kind of denial to recognize the truth that life has been unfair to the person himself and not anyone else, hence it is a disorder.

    Karen chooses a range of varied personalities from an 18-year old Sandy who is a depressed teenager to an 11-year old black boy to a 7-year old Claire to escape the clutches of her trauma.

    She had been abused by her father and grandfather during her childhood, starting with physical assaults by her dad when she was just a baby.

    The mother-of-two began developing imaginary people aged between two to 34 to bear the brunt of the abuse.

    Two-year-old Karen Boo took over when she was attacked as an infant, while seven-year-old Claire was created after Ms Overhill was sexually abused on her Communion Day.”- Daily Mail.

    Many of us suffer from some kind of split self-issues, which we generally term as day dreaming. Some of us even converse with our alter egos as if communicating with a real person. These are ways to modify behaviour as we channelize our negative thoughts by speaking out which is healthy actually, however, when the line between reality and illusion blurs, there begins the problem.


    Diagnosis of MPD is yet a challenge for mental health practitioners as it is difficult to recognize whether a person is suffering from the problem unless he or she admits to be so. Usually, a person with dissociative identities puts all their intelligence in hiding the problem as a matter of social acceptance; they put up a smart attire and attitude which cannot be penetrated to reality.

    However, the common symptoms are-


    • Presence of two or more personality traits in one person.
    • Forgetfulness, that is inability to recall basic information like name, address, family etc. quite often.
    • Variation in the span of memory, which means a single event doesn’t remain registered in the brain for a long time.
    • As each personality reveals itself and controls the individuals' behaviour and thoughts, it's called "switching." Switching can take seconds to minutes to days.


    Hypnosis can quite often bring out the alter egos in a person, and one responds adequately to the queries of the therapist, which may help in resolving the issue. A problem once identified can be cured.

    More of awareness is required though our nation is quickly progressing towards such mental health issues. We still can’t forget the devouring #Majulika of the psycho-horror comedy #BhoolBhulaiyaa where an educated young woman possesses the challenges of being in split personalities because of her deep interest in the myriad world of stories.


    Treatment is a complicated process. It may take several years or it can take just a moment to get a person out of his world of illusions. The earlier the case is correctly diagnosed, the easier the treatment becomes.

    Helping the identities to be aware of one another as legitimate parts of the self and to negotiate and resolve their conflicts is at the very core of the therapeutic process. It is counter-therapeutic for the therapist to treat any alternate identity as if it were more “real” or more important than any other. The therapist should not “play favourites” among the alternate identities or exclude apparently unlikable or disruptive ones from the therapy (such steps may be necessary for a limited period of time at some stages in the treatment of some patients to provide for the safety and stability of the patient or the safety of others)- Journal of Trauma and Dissociation puts it.

    Validation of patient’s childhood memories is important here. The root-cause analysis is important before any medical treatment.

    A number of professional societies have issued statements concerning recovered memories of abuse (American Psychiatric Association, 1993, 2000b; American Psychological Association, 1994, 1996; Australian Psychological Association, 1994; British Psychological Society, 1995). These reports have all concluded that it is possible for accurate memories of abuse to have been forgotten for a long time, only to be remembered much later in life.


    However, mental health is roughly disturbed with a problem like DID and the faster a person gets a vent to express his sub-conscious, the quicker he or she can recover. Family and friends can play a major role in curing the person. Society generally tags such illness with superstitious beliefs like spirit possession, bhoot-pret ka saya etc. and hence patients fear to take medical help. If we remove the taboos and fear from society regarding mental health issues, the earth will be a much better place to live with healthy minds.

    Image source

    References 12 3 

  • 08 Apr
    Oyindrila Basu

    Summer Holiday-When Children Are SAD In Summer

    summer holidya and sad child

    “I’m not in a bad mood;

      I’m in a “hey! If

      I get the opportunity

      To punch someone in the face today.

      I am taking it,” mood!” _ Anonymous.

    Yes, children’s mood is like a rainbow which keeps changing colours. If they are happy now, the phase is like that of a blown up balloon which requires just a prick to burst if off.

    Moreover, seasons have various kinds of effects on our mind. Change of season can make us feel lazy, clumsy, gloomy and less energetic. This is called Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and unfortunately children are more prone to this kind of mood swings.

    If winter is too cold, a child can be SAD, or even if the summer is too hot or too cloudy, he or she gets bored and depressed.

    Summer is already round the corner, and the sun is showing its bright and scorching faces alternatively.

    Summer is the time, when most kids are on vacation; the schools are off and they usually give a long term holiday, so that kids can enjoy, and they are spared of attending classes in the incorrigible heat.

    Summer is the time of joy for kids; they should jump and play and relish the sun, however, they do not cherish it always; they become lazy, and this is due to depression with the environmental factors.

    Loss of appetite, insomnia, weakness etc. are other symptoms of this disorder.

    Peter Zafirides, a psychiatrist in Ohio, said he has noticed a common mental health issue for children, teens, and students during the summer. Many evaluate whether they should still take their medication for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

    Many children lack attention and concentration during this time due to the absence of a constructive routine and hence it results in unattended ADHD symptoms with irritability and anxiety.

    A popular treatment for SAD is called "light therapy," in which the person exposes herself to a special type of light for an amount of time each day, sometimes using a light visor or a light box provided by a doctor. Other treatments include medication, changes in diet, learning new ways to manage stress, or sometimes a vacation to a sunny, warm climate during the cold months.

    However, dealing with kids gets difficult when they show signs of bipolar disorder, which is a grave mental problem. Keeping them engaged is the best way.

    Plan a summer workshop for your kids – You can send them to camps which engages children in various productive activities during summer, like trekking, indoor and outdoor games, theatre, art and other cultural activities. You can also prepare something in your neighbourhood for all the kids around. Engage them in a 2-weeks workshop on a specific subject like fine arts or mathematics which will keep the children involved in academic and co-curricular activities as well as provide an incentive for them to learn with fun.

    Teens can be encouraged for part time jobs- during summer vacation teenagers can try and find some productive work for themselves which they can do to keep themselves engaged. Also they will be excited to get payed, and they can use this money for fun activities and pleasure objects. This will teach them self-sufficiency.

    Day care places can also be an option to keep your child socialized- a few hours at a day-care house will provide a common network to children where they can find many friends of their age and involve in social activities. Playing and learning together is a healthy habit.

    Take your children for a mountain camping- if it is too hot in the plains, take your kids for a mountain trek camp; give them hurdles to cross; keep them enlivened with rigorous physical training amidst the beauty of the hilly mist. It can be a very healthy change for them.

    Give your child regular swimming or any kind of water activity during the vacation- playing in water will exercise their body, which will remove the boredom and laziness, hence when they expose themselves to light, air and water, the depression phase will easily pass of in fun and frolic.

    Image source   

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