• 25 Jul
    Sareeta Behera

    Break the Silence and shackles,You don’t deserve it

    Domestic Violence

    “We don’t necessarily know how to hear stories about any kind of violence, because it is hard to accept that violence is as simple as it is complicated, that you can love someone who hurts you, that you can stay with someone who hurts you, that you can be hurt by someone who loves you, that you can be hurt by a complete stranger, that you can be hurt in so many terrible, intimate ways.”
    Roxane Gay, Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body

    Beaten in black and blue, my colleague entered into my office cabin. It was not the first time I had seen her wounds. There had been multiple times when she would be hiding her injuries and scars. Before her marriage, she used to be the most beautiful and dynamic person I had ever met. But, post marriage her pink face turned blue, her glistening eyes turned pale and her smiling lips turned mum. Sometimes she would burst into laughter for no apparent reason and sometimes cry inconsolably. When asked about her injuries…she would make different excuses and take her leave. However….things turned. That day, her silence broke and she cried her heart out in front of me.

    Within a stipulated period of her marriage, she suffered domestic violence, wife beating and emotional abuse. She was despised in front of significant others at her in-laws place, she was denigrated in front of her husband’s friends and the perpetrators were none other than her husband and his family. When my colleague’s family tried to help and intervene, they were made to keep their mouths shut by saying that, “Aapki ladki ki Galati hai ke wo ek ladki hai. Ghar ka kaam karna, pati aur sabko khush rakhna uski zimmedari hai. Aur agar koi kuch kare aur kahe to usko chup chap sunke apne ghar grihasti pe dhyan dena chahiye. Agar wo zyada muh kholegi ya zyada sawaal jawaab karegi to uske saath yehi hoga aur yehi hone chahiye. Isi liye wo pitti rehti hai.” (It is your daughter's mistake that she is a female that she is a female. Doing the household chore, taking care of her husband and keeping everyone happy is her duty. If someone tells her something, then she should keep quiet and concentrate on doing her work. If she opens her mouth or says/asks anything then she will be beaten anyways. She deserves that). My colleague has also been a victim of marital rape. She was forced into having sex with her husband even without her consent; if she carried she was forced to abort it. She was slashed at her private parts, applied with chilli powder there and she was made to go through situations that no one would ever want to be treated in their worst nightmares.

    As she was sharing her experiences, streaks of questions were hitting my mind: Is it really a mistake to be a woman? Don’t we have the right to say anything or even question when we smell something wrong? Why aren’t women given appropriate respect or integrity by their partners or in-laws? If a husband hits or has extra marital affairs, it is a sign of his masculinity. What if a wife does the same? In today’s world when we are fighting for women rights and gender equality, I guess we have not been yard forward when it comes to gender equity.

    When I asked my colleague as to why she continued in that abusive relationship, her replies were: “What does it mean by abuse? May be I deserved it! May be I should have been able to manage both household responsibilities, family commitments and work responsibilities everything without fail, or even when I am sick or tired. What will the society say if I get separated from my husband? How will I emotionally survive? May be its ok when men to hit women.

    I was wondering whether my colleague was an innocent victim, or simply was living with a body full of wounds and charred emotions. As a psychologist, I consider it my social responsibility to psycho-educate everyone about the deadly aftermath of wife beatings, abuse and domestic violence. Because it is not just a question of the couple in concern, it is about millions of women facing domestic violence and abuse around the world and a big question mark on humanity itself. This reflection is not about generalizing facts, exceptional cases or being judgemental. It’s all about helping abused women transform themselves from victims to strong survivors. It’s all about helping humans internalize humaneness and humanity.

    What is Abuse and Domestic Violence?

    Any behaviour that poses a threat and harms the other person is abuse. It can range from physical abuse to emotional abuse, name-calling, despising, bullying to marital rape and sexual abuse. Marriage doesn’t give any man or the in-laws family the sole right to harm the woman in any form; whether it is verbal, physical or psychological.

    The United Nations defines violence against women as "any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or mental harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life."

    Intimate partner violence refers to behaviour by an intimate partner or ex-partner that causes physical, sexual or psychological harm, including physical aggression, sexual coercion, and psychological abuse and controlling behaviours.

    Sexual violence is "any sexual act, attempt to obtain a sexual act, or other act directed against a person’s sexuality using coercion, by any person regardless of their relationship to the victim, in any setting. It includes rape, defined as the physically forced or otherwise coerced penetration of the vulva or anus with a penis, other body part or object."

    (http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs239/en/ Violence against women. Accessed on 25/07/17)

    According to the global estimates by the World Health Organization, every 1 in 3 (35%) of women globally are experiencing abuse and domestic violence. More so, 38% of murders of women have been done by intimate male partners. Given to this, it is high time to understand the signs of abuse and domestic violence, its repercussions and prevention.

    Signs of Abuse, Wife Beatings and Domestic Violence

    • Unexplained marks or injuries in different parts of the body on a regular basis or from time to time
    • Gradual change in the person’s behaviour
    • Decline in the person’s physical or psychological health
    • Inconsolable crying and other emotional episodes
    • Depression, stress, anxiousness, feeling panicky, and / or sleep problems
    • Anger issues, getting frustrated easily
    • Feelings of harming oneself, harming others and feeling suicidal/suicidal attempts
    • Any other negative or unusual behaviour that is not a part of the person’s regular behaviour patterns or thought processes


    There is no single cause behind domestic violence and abuse. Its reasons are manifold. Some of them are: upbringing, family patterns, reinforcing of such behaviours, cultural stereotypes, anger issues, ego clashes, depression, faulty coping mechanisms for stress and frustration, extra marital affairs, gender stereotypes and so on.

    “In order to escape accountability for his crimes, the perpetrator does everything in his power to promote forgetting. If secrecy fails, the perpetrator attacks the credibility of his victim. If he cannot silence her absolutely, he tries to make sure no one listens.”
    Judith Lewis Herman, Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence - From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror


    Domestic violence and abuse is not acceptable at all. No matter what, no one has the right to hit or harm one’s partner in any way. This is against a person’s dignity, integrity and human rights as a whole. Therefore, ample measures should be taken to avoid and prevent domestic violence and abuse. Some effective steps are:

    • Getting harmed or being abused is not your mistake at all: No matter who you are, where you are or what you/other think about you; you need to understand that getting abused or being harmed was not your fault or mistake at all! You are not responsible for any act of violence on you. There could have been opinion or situational differences. But, hitting or harming is not acceptable in any case. So, never ever think negative about yourself or try to harm yourself. IT IS NOT YOUR FAULT.
    • Respect your Right to Life which includes right to live with Dignity: Even before respecting or loving your so-called abusive partner and other family members, always remember to respect your right to life. It is not something out of the blue. It is your own constitutional mandate. Psychologically, it means to love, respect and accept yourself just the way you are.
    • Enable and Empower Yourself: Psycho-educate yourself on the legal procedures, acts and enactment, laws and provisions for safeguarding yourself from abuse and domestic violence. Empower yourself, believe in your potentials and believe that you deserve to be treated well and fairly in life. You deserve nothing but the best for yourself.
    • Resolve Any Past Unresolved Issues: Pent up emotions and unresolved past issues can keep haunting in the present and destroy your future. If you or your partner are tied up in any past emotional issue, financial problems, past relationship issues and the like, then take every proper step to resolve these pending issues and add a vent to the pent up emotions.
    • Communicate: If this abuse or domestic violence is arising due to differences in opinions, personality, thought patterns and behaviour; it is always a wise step to communicate with each other. Take out quality time for yourselves, talk among yourselves and draw clear boundaries of behaviour towards each other, expectations and how both of you can stay together without harming or getting harmed.
    • Create a Support System: Feelings of guilt, remorse, anger and multitude of emotions and questions regarding the past, present, future, response of significant others and the societal reaction may bombard your mind really hard. During such times try to keep those thoughts aside for a while, try to think about the people who can really understand you in a non-judgemental manner and help you to get out of the hellish situation. If you can find no one then there are ample of NGOs and Support Groups who are empowered and strong enough to stand by your side and create an enabling environment for you.
    • Be Your Own Support System: Remember that you are no less. You have every potentiality within you and given a chance you have every possibility of soaring high in the sky. Believe in yourself and work towards building a safe and secure life that you truly deserve and are capable of living.
    • Take Professional Help: Not just women, but men are also sufferers of abuse and violence. In both the cases, it is important to work towards the well-being of each one of you. Therefore, it is always wise to take professional help to understand the situations from unbiased and non-judgemental perspectives, transform yourself from a victim to a strong survivor.

    A marriage for some people definitely is a big life-changing event. It can be for good or turn out completely against you. In every case, it is imperative to understand that abuse, wife beatings or domestic violence is NOT OKAY AT ALL. These are unethical on humanitarian grounds and are also punishable offences against the law. So, take the charge of your life before it’s too late. If you feel that you or someone you know is going through such problems, please feel free to contact us. If no one cares or helps…we are there, just a click away. Our experienced and licensed experts are all set to help you live a life of meaningfulness and dignity; to work towards leading a life full of smiles and luminance that you truly deserve.

    Male domestic violence

    Do not stay mum. Break the silence and break the shackles…….

    “Toxic relationships are dangerous to your health; they will literally kill you. Stress shortens your lifespan. Even a broken heart can kill you. There is an undeniable mind-body connection. Your arguments and hateful talk can land you in the emergency room or in the morgue. You were not meant to live in a fever of anxiety; screaming yourself hoarse in a frenzy of dreadful, panicked fight-or-flight that leaves you exhausted and numb with grief. You were not meant to live like animals tearing one another to shreds. Don't turn your hair gray. Don't carve a roadmap of pain into the sweet wrinkles on your face. Don't lay in the quiet with your heart pounding like a trapped, frightened creature. For your own precious and beautiful life, and for those around you — seek help or get out before it is too late. This is your wake-up call!”
    Bryant McGill


    To my CEO, eWellness Expert, Mr. Shiva Raman Pandey who could understand and empathize the pain of abuse and violence survivors, who gave me a platform to keep my words forth. To the strong survivors who did not let go, gave their life a second chance and gave a form to their aspirations and dreams. To my clients who have been my best teachers and to the contributors of goodreads.com for stepping ahead, taking the charge to stop violence and infuse a new life force…..

    Responses 1

    • Sanjna Verma
      Sanjna Verma   Aug 02, 2017 10:10 PM

      The article serves as a perfect guide towards domestic violence. It is very important to eradicate this practice as every human being has the right to live their lives with dignity and in peace. Upbringing is surely a major factor due to which such incidents come up. I reckon that both, the perpetrator and the victim as both of them have an equal part to play towards the prevalence of it.

  • 24 Jul
    Heena Sheth

    10 Idioms we use and their psychological basis



    In our day to day lives, we use different phrases to explain our ideas and express our views. Idioms are used by human beings in their verbal communication with each other. An idiomatic expression consists of a group of words that aren’t meant to be taken literally (in most cases). Their meaning is rather figurative. Here is a list of 10 idioms and the psychological basis behind them.

    1. Well begun is half done

     As important it is to have a plan of action, it is equally important for an individual to start the task or project at hand on a good note. The applicability of this idiom has seldom been significant during my school life. Before the school closes for the holidays, I already have a list of things I want to do during the holidays. Before the last day of school arrives, I have prepared a schedule which has a balance of two things – activities of leisure and a few hours of study, what one could call an ideal timetable. However, it so happens that the fun spirit of the holidays gradually fills me up and motivates me to spend my time enjoying the break rather than spending some significant duration on my studies. As a result, I find myself overburdened with homework, projects and test preparation just three days before. This leads to high levels of stress and pressure. Consequently, the quality of work is not always as good as it could have been, had I followed the timetable. Hence, it would not be wrong to say well begun on time is half done.

    1. Ignorance is bliss

    We often wish that, had we not known a particular fact or a certain truth we would not find ourselves in the state of unhappiness that we are in after hearing about it. We often don’t tell someone about certain news or about an encounter, for we know that disclosing that piece of information to him/her will compel the person to go into a state of shock. It is not a rare situation when an individual undergoes a phase of denial after receiving the news of the sudden demise of their loved ones. Denial is a kind of defense mechanism that an individual makes use of, to prevent himself/herself from experiencing pain and helps them to avoid the harsh truth - the death itself. A defense mechanism is the mind’s way of coping with the unpleasant stimulus. We often wish that it would have been better if we were not aware of an event because it is unpleasant.  Remember, curiosity killed the cat!

    1. Doing something at the drop of a hat

    This phrase comes way back from the wars that were fought in the 19th century; where the dropping of a hat was signal marking the beginning of the fight. It is not rare that we see parents give in to the demands of a child who is naughty and mischievous to stop him from continuing his acts of mischief. In other words, a spoilt child throws tantrums when his demands aren’t fulfilled and the parents go out of the way to provide the child whatever he wishes for. The child cries and yells and in order to pacify the child, the parents agree to fulfill the whims and fancies of the child at the drop of a hat. This leads to the bringing up of a pampered child. According to another connotation of this idiom, to do something at the drop of a hat means to do an activity without any planning or prior thinking. Often we see that certain people take decisions at the drop of a hat. Such decisions are hasty ones, which, often lack logic. These decisions do not seem to be benefiting the decision maker.

    1. Every cloud has a silver lining

    The phrase encourages one not to lose hope in difficult situations. It tries to instill in a person a positive stream of thoughts when times get tough. In the face of adversity, one needs to be resilient. One becomes resilient by analysing the situation and focusing on strengthening the positives. Engaging in positive thoughts is also adds an advantage. Scientific research has been proven time and again that positive thinking has great health benefits. Positive often hear people say ‘optimism is the key to success', ‘healthy mind breeds a healthy body and vice-versa’. So come what may, one must find the positives, practice positivity, have hope in their hearts and one can be sure to find the silver lining even among the darkest clouds. There is always a ray of hope.

    1. Action speaks louder than words

    The way people conduct themselves in a situation is a greater determinant of their character than the words they choose to express themselves. There are many people who say great things that can inspire but one can only rely on that person if he/she practice what they preach. Lying is a skill which many can master, but being a man of your words is what really matters. People are always observant of the behaviour of the person with whom they are interacting with. It is based on the ‘action’, the ‘conduct’, that determines whether or not the individual can be trusted. Moreover, if people feel that a particular person’s behaviour makes them uncomfortable, they choose not to interact with them. People make promises at the same time people lie. The ones who do so are not reliable people. Moreover, it is through the actions (i.e. behaviour) of the parents that the child learns to sit, walk, talk, and sing. One can instruct the child to behave in a particular manner but the child is more likely to imitate what it sees.

    1. Slow and steady wins the race

    Hard working people are more likely to achieve their goals rather than last-minute workers. This idiom implies that a person who is consistent and steady in their approach can achieve success even if he/she is slow. The word slow need not be taken in the negative sense; it merely implies the opposite of fast, something is done in a fury of time, in a hasty manner. This proverb teaches us the virtues of patience and perseverance which enables a person to cope in the face of adversity. Taken from a popular tale of the Aesop’s Fables, this phrase can be applied to all areas in life. A student should pace his studies, prepare a routine and follow it and will find himself at ease with his studies, at work tasks completed at a steady pace keeps away mental stress and pressure, makes the worker more productive. Hence, reliability and consistency are as important as speed.

    1. Jump on the bandwagon

    To jump on the bandwagon means to join a growing movement with an opportunistic approach. The psychological basis behind this idiom has its foundation in Social Psychology. Individuals conform to others, specifically large influential groups since they feel more accepted.  Conformity is a social influence in which individuals change their attitudes and behaviour in order to adhere to the existing social norms. As the human race, we often seem to favour certain trends that are being largely accepted by other members. We too have been a part of the bandwagon effect every time we have adopted a popular trend, just because our friends were doing it too. The reason why people jump on the bandwagon is to avoid the effect of not conforming to the social groups. It would be wrong to say that jumping into bandwagon has only negative results, very often people find their true-calling by pursuing an activity which several others around him are doing. One should be careful and weigh out the consequences of following the trend or staying aloof from it.

    1. Leave no stone unturned

    This idiom means to do everything possible to find something or to solve a problem. One must do everything possible in their capacity to achieve their goals. Their goals must realistic and achievable. An individual shouldn’t compete with others for that competition is unhealthy; rather he should be his own competitor. He should motivate himself and push himself, walk the extra mile in order to achieve his goal. He will face hardships and criticisms, but he must keep his rationale and continue striving, leaving no stone unturned.

    1. Rain over people’s parade

        Remember when you had an idea about a particular topic, you were excited about it and discussed it with your group members? However, your excitement and passion was shattered because one of the group members gave a rude response to it and you felt really bad. That is what raining on other people’s parade is like. People rain over others parade when they are insecure about themselves and feel jealous of their competitors. We all have faced a situation in our lives where our ideas and thought are not appreciated and they have been responded to by a negative response. They have been made insignificant or we were asked to rethink about it, making us feel misunderstood and we feel put down. This works both ways. There have also been times when we might have killed someone’s enthusiasm about a project by our words or our reaction. When an individual faces repeated rejections, they are left devastated, often pushing them to the clutches of depression. Hence, we must be careful in the way we communicate.

    1. Don’t cry over spilled milk

    Life is not a bed of roses and hence we will face ups and downs. The failures that we face might even break our spirit. But there is no point brooding over it. What has happened has happened and it can’t be changed anymore, hence getting stuck on it will not help one to overcome the problem. Making mistakes is but natural and feeling guilty for our mistake is only human. However, if an individual keeps fixating about the mistakes of his past he is creating another hurdle in his life. He is being harsh on himself. Rather than learning from the mistake, the person will want to escape from the mistake with or the situation itself. He will try to avoid situations where there is a possibility of a setback, disaster or failure. Instead, he must know self-forgiveness."Self-forgiveness is a way to separate out the actions we regret from our core self or being, and by doing that, allows us to find ways to move forward.’’ – Marilyn Cornish. After all, failures are only the pillars of success.

    Responses 1

    • Sanjna Verma
      Sanjna Verma   Aug 26, 2017 02:51 PM

      At the first look, the topic looked interesting and it was a treat to have read it and understand the implications of each idiom. It is well written. Loved the way you related these idioms with some real life incident and the way you explained the thoughts towards a healthy living.

      These idioms as everyone knows, have been emerged out of our daily life activities. I totally related to the incident in which you described about well begun job being equal to be half done. In fact, we all in our school days, have enjoyed our holidays in such a way that we forgot to do our studies and homework! The quote on bandwagon totally reminds me of the current eradicating of social media wherein we begin following trends because others do so and be accepted by others.

      Also the quotes in which you mentioned about having a sense of Hope and working hard to leave no stone unturned, was the one I liked the most. Rest of the points are agreeable as well. 



  • 24 Jul
    Heena Sheth

    Ten Famous Psychologists

    psychologists in historyThe subject of psychology emerged from the dual fields of philosophy and physiology and acquired the status of a discipline by the end of 19th century. A look at the history of psychology reveals that it was the European and American states where the majority of the milestones were achieved. Psychology which was at one point of time regarded as the study of the soul is now recognised as the systematic study of behaviour and cognitive processes. Swami Vivekananda refers to it as the science of all sciences. Psychologists are people who are trained to analyse the mental processes and observe the behaviour of individuals. Through their elaborate studies and extensive research, they theorise about the human nature. Here is a list of 10 famous psychologists whose theories and views are important to the growth of psychology as they offer a different perspective of understanding the human race on a whole.

    Wilhelm Wundt (1832-1920)

    wilhelm wundt

    Often regarded as the Father of Psychology, Wilhelm Wundt graduated in medicine. He is noted for setting up the first formal laboratory for research in experimental psychology at the University of Leipzig. Along with his contributions to the experimental methods such as introducing the technique of ‘introspection’, he is also known as the ‘Founder of Experimental Psychology'. He proposed that psychology should focus on analysing the contents of our consciousness in order to determine its basic elements and the relationships between them. This view was later improved and known as ‘structuralism’ - the first school of thought in psychology. Wundt believed in reductionism. His support for experimental psychology provided the grounds for the birth and development of Behaviourism.


     Sigmund Freud (1856-1939)

    sigmund freud

    In spite of being one of the most controversial figures in the field of psychology, Sigmund Freud’s theories are important for a basis for modern clinical psychology. As a young man, he aspired to make his name in the medical field. His fascination and interest for the brain enabled him to develop his theories of human personality and psychological disorders. His knowledge of neuroscience and his medical background shaped his view that not all psychological disorders can have a physiological basis. Known as the Father of Psychoanalysis – a method of therapy based on his theory of personality in which the therapist attempts to bring repressed unconscious material into consciousness. His views of development as identified in the ‘Psychosexual Theory of Development’ have faced severe criticism from the anthropological, feminist and scientific points of view.


    John B. Watson (1878-1958)

    john watson

    John Watson was an American psychologist who promoted a natural science approach to the subject. He is most noted for his experiment “Little Albert” which has been thoroughly cited, elaborated, scrutinised and has acquired the status of a psychological legend. He was influenced by the works of Dewey, Angell, and Loeb which led to his objective approach to the analysis of behaviour.It was later known as Behaviourism. Ivan Pavlov was one of his greatest influences in the later part of his life. His 1913 publication is referred to as the Behaviorist Manifesto. It includes methods that psychology should adopt to become scientifically acceptable. He suggested that psychology should study the observable aspect of human nature i.e. behaviour and not concepts of the mind.

     Karen Horney (1885-1952)

    karen horney

    One of the most noted Neo-Freudian, popularly known as she challenged Freud’s concept of the penis envy, Karen Horney is also regarded as the founder of the Feminine Psychology. It was in her childhood when she had faced depression and this continued to throughout her life. Horney emphasised on the social rather than biological forces as the shapers of personality. Horney’s nature of human nature is more optimistic than Freud’s. According to her, each person is unique and is not doomed to conflict. The ultimate goal of life is self-realization, an innate urge to grow, which can be hindered or helped by social forces. Horney believed that an individual can consciously shape and change our minds.


     Anna Freud (1895-1982)

    anna freud

    Anna Freud was an Austrian psychoanalyst who was later naturalised as a British Citizen. Regarded as the founder of child psychoanalysis, Anna Freud the daughter of Sigmund Freud took a keen interest in the workings of psychoanalysis since the age of 13. She substantially revised orthodox psychoanalysis by expanding the role of the ego, arguing that the ego operates independently of the id. This was a radical and a fundamental change in the Freudian system. The full development and the articulation of the defence mechanisms are her most significant contributions to the Psychoanalytic Theory. Her work “The Ego and the Mechanisms of Defense” are founding works of ego psychology. She began her career as a teacher; however, she went on to be a pioneer in child psychoanalysis along with Melanie Klein. She is widely considered to be an innovator in child psychology as a practice.


     Jean Piaget (1896-1980)

    jean piaget

    Jean Piaget was a French developmental psychologist. He developed a theory to explain how children develop through a series of stages. Piaget’s theory is a unifying story of cognitive development being sculpted by biology and experience. Interested in basic questions of philosophy, Piaget defined his field of interest as genetic epistemology. Piaget sought to shed new light on the nature of human knowledge by studying how children come to know the world. He also suggested that language develops because of cognitive development, suggesting a cyclical relationship between language and cognition. Piaget’s works are found on a number of topics – language, reality, morality, causality, time, intelligence, play dreams and imitation and consciousness. Although many of Piaget’s ideas were formulated in the 1920s, there was little knowledge of his work in North America until the 1960s, when John Flavell’s summary of Piaget’s theory appeared in English.


     Lev Vygotsky (1896-1934)

    lev vgotsky

    Lev Vygotsky was a Russian psychologist who primarily studied the way children think. Interested in the role played by social interaction on cognitive development, Vygotsky contended that development first takes place socially. Vygotsky’s theory of development is a concept that belongs to the social constructivism. Lev and Piaget were contemporaries, in fact, they were born in the same year. Vygotsky believed that language and thought are intertwined and that during childhood development this relationship changes. The concept of inner speech (or self-talk) was first advocated for the first time, by Vygotsky. Self-talk has paved the way for metacognition. His works inspired the hypothesis known as the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis (or linguistic relativity.) Vygotsky died at an early age of 38 due to tuberculosis before his theories were fully developed. He also established research laboratories in several cities of the Soviet Union.

     Carl Rogers (1902- 1987)

    carl rogers

    Initially planning to become a minister, Carl Rogers decided to focus on human personality after taking up a few courses on psychology. Along with Abraham Maslow, he played a crucial role in establishing the Humanistic Approach to psychology. The humanistic school explained human nature in an optimistic manner and said that strivings for self-growth, dignity, and self-determination are important for personality growth. According to Rogers, humans have many positive characteristics and they move through the course of their lives towards becoming ‘fully functioning persons’. Individuals who fail to become so, have distorted self-concepts that interfere with personal growth. There is a gap between their self-image and ideal self. He was the first therapist to tape-record sessions, making it easier for therapists to refer to it when they needed to. He developed a non-directive approach to counseling the veterans of the Second World War. With his Client-Centered Approach, he revolutionised the relationship between the therapist and the client.

    B.F. Skinner (1904-1990)


    With initial fervor to change the world through writing, Burrhus Fredric Skinner aspired to be a writer while he was an undergraduate. One of the most famous behaviorists, Skinner believed that since internal mental states cannot be studied scientifically, psychology should rather focus only on overt responses to the various stimuli. A major proponent of the operant conditioning, Skinner insisted that people determine the causes of most forms of behavior and them manipulating these conditions to influence the behavior in desired directions. His views led to a distinct branch of psychology called Applied Behavior Analysis. Skinner contributed to the linguistics and philosophy with his books such as ‘Beyond Freedom and Dignity’ His other major contribution has been education and pedagogy. He also theorised that audio-visual aids would enhance learning, which today, is a means of teaching.

     Albert Bandura (1925-present)


    Albert Bandura is a Canadian psychologist whose major contribution to the vast domain of psychology is the Social Cognitive Theory. He has been credited for bridging the gap between the cognitive psychology and behaviourism and is one the most influential psychologists in the modern times. According to him, a person's behaviour is influenced by his environment and vice versa. This concept is known as reciprocal determinism He claims that human beings are cognitive beings whose active processing of information plays a critical role in their learning, behaviour, and development. The concept of observational learning was explained by his now classical Bobo Doll Experiment. Observational Learning is the acquisition of new forms of behaviour, information, or concepts through exposure to others and the consequences they experience. Since the 1960s, behaviourism has given way to the cognitive school of psychology, and Albert Bandura is a significant part of this transition. His book ‘Self-Efficacy: The exercise of control’ is extremely valuable for graduate courses. He has been awarded more than 16 honorary degrees and in 2014 he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada.Today, he continues to teach at Stanford University.

    These are a few of the most famous psychologists. Who is the psychologist who inspires you the most? Comment below!

  • 24 Jul
    Reshma Venugopal

    Here’s why single parents deserve a standing ovation!


     family emoji

    When Bianca found herself left alone with her twins, one of whom has Asperger’s disease, she found herself helplessHer twins are 8 years-old now, and she went back to work just 18 months after the boys were born. She was then fired from her work 2 years later, because of all the pressure of taking care of herself and her babies. After this, she struggled to find full-time employment and along with her minimal earnings, she could not help but find herself and her boys in poverty. To improve her long term earning, she decided to start studying law, however, that also became an expensive and rather unmanageable thing to pursue. During this time, she made sure her sons were not facing any psychological issues, however, and quite unfortunately, they did go through them (10 stories of single mothers, 2017).

    But the fact that a single mother (or father) do everything in their hands to ensure that their children remain healthy needs to be recognised. It’s their thoughts that make that type of relationship so beautiful, and here are some more reasons why every single parent deserves more appreciation.

    1) Stress and emotional difficulties

    I think it is safe to say that no matter who you are, if you are expected to do a two-person job by yourself, then you will make a face. Well, at least I do and should I be worried about that? Okay, we shall make this a topic of discussion some other day.
    However, going back to the main point, single parents probably face more amount of stress and emotional difficulties than those with parents who have their partners support. Especially those single parent families that are trapped in the poverty cycle. Economic stress and poor mental health among single parents especially single mothers has been significantly correlated in many studies (McLoyd et al., 1994). So, when you think about it, they have so much on their plate, and the fascinating part is that no matter how much stress their financial situation and the society gives them, they only have one motive and goal in life, and that is to keep their kids happy.

    2) Their daily struggles

    In this case, I would like to divide this point into a few sub-categories:

    • Dealing with the society: Once again, our dear society, our so-called culture, and norms dictate how one should live their life and what “should” make them happy. Single parents not only have to deal with the demanding world and people looking down on them, but they also must deal with how all that affects their children.
    • Meeting the demands of more than one child when they are of different sexes becomes even more taxing. Their needs are obviously different and hence it becomes more difficult for them to meet those demands.
    • Giving their children the love and affection they require. And maybe this is the toughest part. Because they are expected to be two parents, and make up for all that time they spend working, on catching up with the kids. Granted, that not all parents might be as patient and be giving as some, but studies have shown that single parents always do their best to care for their children.

    sushmita sen daughters


     3) They rise above all the difficult patches
    This is hands down my favorite point. Studies have shown that no matter how difficult the situation gets, no matter how much stress and depression the parents go through, they eventually face reality and adjust themselves to the situation. Many of us from the younger generation often decide to simply give up when a difficulty arises just because we don’t get what we want. But hey, please learn from these people. Not everything revolves around you and if you failed in your exams or your parents didn’t let you go for a trip with your friends, then believe me it is not the end of the world. There are people out there who go through triple of what you do, and maybe your reasons make sense to you, but I think it is important we all learn from these single parents too.

    What is more astonishing is that even the children of these single parents are so tough and adjustable. Yes, more than the ones with two parents. The lack of having one parent is most of the time not seen as a loss or discouragement but rather, seen as a symbol of strength. These are the same children who become independent and mature faster than the rest of the population. And I personally think, along with single parents, their children also deserve a round of applause.

    4) They will complain the least

    Between the battle of meeting ends, paying bills, getting their children a good education, and ignoring the intrusive and obnoxious aunties and neighbors who judge them, they only want to get through these problems by themselves. And I think that builds character and strength in the person. They will hardly want their children to know what they go through and through all of this, they will still try to maintain a positive outlook around their children and keep them happy no matter how hard it is.

    There it is, all the reasons we need to respect and salute our single parents. We, as a society need to learn that no matter what the situation is that caused them to be alone, helping them out and not judging them should be one of the cultural rules that we should follow. So what if the lady/man in the next apartment is a divorcee? Or she/he had a child before marriage? The last thing she/he wants right now is your judgmental and unnecessary opinion. Like nobody asked you, and if you can’t accept him or her for who they are and what they have on their plates, then please stay out of their way and watch them rise above and fight it all, alone, with their children by their side.

    Responses 1

    • Sanjna Verma
      Sanjna Verma   Aug 09, 2017 10:01 PM

      Well written piece. Yeah, single parents have their own priorities and how they handle their jobs, houses and their children together is worth appreciating and at times they might get support or they might not. I was not aware of the discrimination faced by them. They are living their lives in the way because of certain circumstances and people bringing that thing up are indirectly making fun of their situation. We should learn from such parents to keep doing our duties well without worrying about what others think of us. Also not complaining about their life they lead. They do it because they have no other choice and ensuring a good life for their children. Life iis beautiful and we are lucky enough to be living it. It is going to be tough but having that resilience to be able to cope with whatever life turns on us. It is important. In this way, I reckon that single parents make us learn how to live life.

  • 23 Jul
    Heena Sheth

    Mental Illness Is Not A One Man's Struggle


    "Mentally ill people are dangerous." "Mentally ill people are absolutely crazy and psychotic, STAY AWAY!", "Mentally ill should be locked away." "Mentally ill people are always dependent on someone." We have often heard such statements or ones similar to these in movies, television shows, or books. The mass media is not to be blamed, for it mirrors the opinions and beliefs of the society. Many people feel that mental illness is like gold dust, it can only happen to very few people and it will never affect them. This belief has been proven to be inaccurate by various studies conducted on mental health. The World Health Organization reports that today, about 450 million people suffer from a mental or behavioural disorder.

    The life of a person with mental illness is not just limited to psychological pain. Mental illness and medical illness are interrelated. For example, Somatoform disorders are those mental illnesses which are accompanied by physical pain, numbness and certain other physical symptoms of discomfort in the absence of any evidence of real physical ailment. Apart from this people find that their mental illnesses increase their susceptibility of developing poor physical health, it impacts their cognitive functioning of the body and decreases energy levels. Consequently, there are emotional problems that crop up, such inability to regulate emotions, heightened anger and frustration and low self-esteem.

    The society as a whole is affected by mental health problems; it is not limited to the people facing them. As Aristotle said that man is a social animal, he is compelled to live in the society for the fulfillment of his biological and psychological needs. The needs of psychological safety, social recognition, love, and self- actualization are accomplished in the course of living in society, and he depends on the other members of society for this. Thus, something that would bother one man will also bother the other men who are associated with and related to him/her. Persons who suffer from mental illness are often the last ones to realise that there is something which is not right and something which is definitely wrong. The sad reality is that a person suffering from mental illness is not everyone’s problem. Not only is this person a danger to himself or herself, but is often a danger to society at large. There is not only an uncomfortable silence that surrounds diseases of the mind of the ones but also the ones who suffer with them. The mental illness of individual pain his/her family, teachers, friends, and people at his/her work place.



    For persons with mental disorders, it is the family and the family members who play the role of primary caregivers. Hence, awareness about mental health among the family members becomes extremely crucial. Parents are the ones who seek help for their child regardless of their age. The anguish of having a child with mental illness is unthinkable. One can only imagine what they go through when they see other kids moving from their life as a student, to an earning member of a family and looking after them, while their own child barely does one-tenth of it. The person suffering from mental illness often feels that he or she is being misunderstood by the family members; but this misunderstanding is, however, mutual. The sufferer fails to realise that they too are unable to understand their family member. This makes relations bitter leading to strings of discord and disharmony being woven among the family members, often resulting in the loss of meaning of relations and consequently isolation.

    The impact of mental illness is often so everlasting, that certain family members become pessimistic about the future. The presence of stigmas regarding mental illness is so deeply ingrained in society that family members gradually start avoiding interactions with the other members of society. In certain communities family members deny accepting that a member is plagued by such a condition, adding to the plight of the sufferer. All in all, it leads to withdrawing from activities of the congregation, cultural group or community activities. For many people, dealing with a mentally ill patient is traumatic and back-breaking.

    Families start developing anger, frustration and a lot of negativity is generated by the family members. This stems from the routine and the family life becoming unpredictable. It is a draining experience as the working members of the family have to fulfill the demands with the mentally ill as well as with the usual problems of everyday life. They feel trapped and discouraged when they meet failure after trying different approaches to cure their dear one. Since illness impairs the individual’s ability to perform and function properly, the grief inflicted upon the family members difficult to overcome with. A life altering illness substantially diminishes the potentials, talents, and skills of a person and families struggle to come to terms with a less promising future.




    education and awareness about mental health 

    Teachers and educators are the next group of people but are usually the first ones to notice mental health problems among the children. Teaching such children can prove to be the best job in the world only if the teacher has the flair to teach and the courage to accept that it is not the same like other teaching jobs. They have to the mammoth task of providing the child with the basic education of his or her intellectual level while handling all the difficulties that the students face and build a relationship of trust.

    Such students have a shorter concentration span in comparison to the ones who do not face any mental illness. Hence, the tasks that are given to them and the lessons taught to them have to be tailor-made according to their abilities. Mental illness impairs a student's ability to learn. Adolescents whose mental illness is not treated rapidly and aggressively tend to fall further and further behind in school. The teachers are only allowed to empathise with these students and not sympathise with them, for the latter leads to transference. They have to bear the stress on themselves for making these students work without inflicting upon them the actual burden of the task.

    Students with mental illness face emotional, behavioural and adjustment problems. They often express their frustration and built in anger by throwing things or by harming their classmates or even themselves. The teacher must know what action to take to handle the situation. The teacher must know where physical intervention is necessary and where it is not. They have to be caring and empathetic. The student may love and hate the teacher, but the teacher must not forget that he/she is a teacher first.



    mental illness and work

    Mental illness also affects the individual’s work atmosphere. Due to the mental illness, the individual does not perform to his maximum level of productivity. He is unable to meet the expectations of the seniors and due to his sensitive condition, his seniors are at a loss, for they are stuck between behaving in a professional manner at the same time they have to avoid reacting in any way that will cause more stress to the individual. Prior to the diagnosis of an individual’s mental illness he used to lead from the front, he used to motivate his subordinates, make them optimally productive and guide them. However, now he is unable to inspire and influence them. The subordinates need to work more and be sympathetic towards their team leader. The team members now rely on themselves for their own motivation and deal with the leader’s mood swings and other effects of the mental illness. Further, the firm cannot fire him on humanitarian grounds.



    A friendship forms one of the foundations of our ability to cope with the problems that life throws at us. Relationships become challenging when a friend has a mental illness. We may talk to friends in confidence about things we wouldn't discuss with our families. Due to the stigma attached to mental illness in the society, people who face it often shut themselves from the rest of the world and have only the slightest interactions with other people, for they fear being judged and unaccepted in the society. Friendships seem to fade away as the friends who understand this pain are extremely few. Often while supporting a friend through their mental illness, the individual experiences a burn out. It gets difficult to balance the friendship.

    Thus we see that mental illness is not a one man’s struggle. We, as members of the society, are also affected by it. Hence, as much as it is important for the mentally ill to seek professional help, it is also crucial for the other people related to them to be aware of their boundaries and help them without putting their own health in danger. 

    Responses 1

    • Sanjna Verma
      Sanjna Verma   Aug 10, 2017 09:31 PM

      A good piece of information. The problems faced by a mentally ill person is very much considered these days but earlier on, they were secluded from the rest of the society which is all the more painful in psychological terms. Also how the family members secluded themselves from gatherings is something to be looked upon. They have not chosen the illness by their own, it was their genetic makeup and the environment which caused this. It is due to neglect of such issues due to which Psychology is an underrated field of study, especially in India.

      All the points you wrote had one thing in common. It is that how difficult it is to deal with such people. It really requires the skill of being patient and providing extra help to the affected individual. In such cases, it may also happen that along with the mentally affected person but also their family or any other individual who is closely associated with the individual may also need counselling. The mentally ill require care and respect to be able to get along with things.


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