How I Deal With My Negative Self-Talk

Do you feel frustrated with your negative self-talk? Then read this blog post to know how I deal with it.

I used to frequently demean myself for doing stupid things. And although it’s considered normal and almost everybody does it, I think it’s important to reduce these self-demeaning thoughts.

It’s OK to sometimes think that you are weird or stupid. But sometimes these thoughts feel overwhelming and too much to handle.

In those situations, we need to calm our minds and relax a bit. And seek to become more self-aware.

A few weeks ago, I was reading a book called “How to Be Yourself: Quiet Your Inner Critic and Rise Above Social Anxiety” by Ellen Hendriksen (Affiliate link: I get a commission if you purchase the book through this link) and I read a part where the author makes the readers ask three easy questions.

These three questions from the book helped me deal with negative self-talk and reduce my anxiety-

  1. What’s the worst that can happen?
  2. What are the odds of that happening?
  3. How would you cope?

And I noticed that whenever I get anxious or do any negative self-talk, I ask myself these questions and I can become aware of why I felt negative or got a strong urge to call myself “stupid” or “loser”.

When I do this, I can reduce my negative feelings to something manageable.

For example, if I feel like a loser because I lied to someone about something unimportant because it would be very embarrassing to accept that I had lied. So I say to myself in negative self-talk,” You are just a loser”. 

If I immediately counter that by saying,” No, I am not a loser, I am a winner.”, I continue feeling bad for some reason. 

But if I ask myself the above three questions one by one, this is what happens-

Me – “What’s the worst that could happen in this situation?”

My answer- “Oh well, the person would call me a ‘liar’ out loudly and kick me out of the institute forever and people would know I am a ‘liar’.”

Me- “What are the odds of that happening?”

My answer- “Well, the person may ask why I lied. And I would say I was nervous. And he would probably trust me less.”

Me- “How would I cope?”

My answer- “I would probably listen to some sad songs and write a sad poem to myself and read spiritual stories and forgive myself through writing in my journal. It’s just one time I lied a silly lie, to one person. No big deal. I won’t repeat it and now past is past.”

This process makes me feel so much better. And I don’t feel like I am fighting an uphill battle against my mind.

This process also reduces my anxiety a lot and I feel like I can reduce these big and scary thoughts to something more manageable with just the second question,” What are the odds of that happening?”

And I also noticed that I can overcome more of my social anxiety with these questions in real life. I went to 3 big social events this month and I think those are big wins for me. I believe that’s because of the above book.

For all this, I want to thank Ellen Hendriksen, the author of the above-mentioned book “How to Be Yourself: Quiet Your Inner Critic and Rise Above Social Anxiety”

I haven’t finished listening to the whole audiobook on but I will do it soon. 

You can also use these questions to deal with your inner critic and negative self-talk and reduce your anxiety one question at a time.

Although I didn’t overcome my anxieties this month overnight. It took time. 

Also, the book’s original questions are phrased like this-

  1. How bad would that really be?
  2. What are the odds?
  3. How could I cope?

Also in the book originally the questions are only one part of the whole process. So don’t completely depend on me or think that this is the complete process. Please get the book and read it.

Thank you for reading this blog post. Do read the book and please comment on what you think about this blog post.

Disclaimer- I am not a psychologist or a doctor. If you have a mental illness, please seek the help of a professional. The advice in this blog post is just from my personal experience. For the full scientific process, read the mentioned book.

If you feel toxic masculinity is a problem, then read this.

When I used to return home from school, I had to walk 10 minutes from my school to catch the bus(main)  which took me to my home bus stop. 

But there was another bus stand near my school where I got other buses to take me to the next bus stop where I could get my (main) bus. 

So I used to take a bus ride to the next bus stop where I could catch my (main) bus because I used to feel too tired for the 10-minute walk.

One day I got on the first bus and two of my male classmates were on that bus. 

And they asked me something like where I was going. I said that I was only taking the bus to go to the next stop where I would catch the (main) bus. 

As I said this they cracked a joke. I don’t remember the exact joke. But I remember that the joke was on me. They meant to say I was “half-man” for not walking 10 minutes and taking the first bus.

This was one of my many experiences with toxic masculinity. 

There are other experiences like always having expectations to be emotionless among male friends, talking about sports too much or simply disrespecting girls by considering them to be less human or worse. 

And I hate this. 

I hate this because this is a violation of our deepest ethics. 

Do you have a sister? Do you or did you have a mother? How would you feel or what would you do if someone disrespected or did worse to them?

But just to be clear about my above experience of the bus, I think these standards of masculinity are very toxic. 

“If you cry, you are not a man”

“If you take a bus to avoid pain, you are not  a man.”

“If you watch romance movies, you are not a man.”

“If you follow your wife’s advice, you are not a man.”

I am not saying that there’s something wrong with being gay. But the word “half-man” in the above experience meant more than just LGBTQ. It meant not walking for 10 minutes and having less stamina, less alpha, less muscular, less testosterone, less extroverted, less confident, less aggressive, less stoic, less power, less control, less military, and less manly.

How can not walking for 10 minutes make you look “half-man”? The truth is I am emotional, I am not very muscular or extroverted or aggressive or stoic or controlling or military. But does that mean I am less manly?

“We now understand that femininity and masculinity are not innate but are based upon social and cultural conditions. Anthropologist Margaret Mead addressed the issue of differences in temperament of males and females in Sex and Temperament in Three Primitive Societies (1935). This early study concluded that there are no necessary differences in traits or temperaments between the sexes. Observed differences in temperament between men and women are not a function of their biological differences. Rather, they result from differences in socialization and the cultural expectations held for each sex.”

Even if the above quote said that the differences between men and women “are” due to biological differences, I would still advocate against toxic masculinity. Because toxic masculinity is unethical. 

I believe that I am not less of a man. I can love reading, cooking, skincare, spirituality, romance movies and books, Sims 4 and so on and still be a man. 

I can love those things and still fall in love with a woman, start a family, take the kids to karate class, ride a bike, drive a car, be happy, make a million dollars, start a startup, go to Martin Garrix’s shows, get tattoos, etc. because it’s time start making the meanings of words like “man” and “woman” a little loose.

I am listening to “Don’t Look Down” by Martin Garrix and Usher. And I think this is perfect for ending this blog post because this song means freedom and community to me. 

And freedom from toxic masculinity and a community where women and feminine energy are not looked down upon and disrespected is what is needed now. 

Let’s make freedom and a community that is free of toxic masculinity a reality.

The Story of My Favourite Singer 

This is the story of my favourite singer Christina Grimmie. 

Christina Grimmie was a singer, YouTuber and many things. She was also a contestant and top 3 finalists of The Voice Season 6. 

She was also a strong believer in Jesus Christ. Her strong faith was commendable. 

And she was my role model. I looked up to her and wanted to grow up watching her succeed. 

But on 10th June 2016, she was murdered and died from gunshot wounds. 

Story of Christina Grimmie

I found her youtube channel on 5th June 2016(approx. date) and I watched her “Must Be Love” music video and I fell in love with her. Next, I watched all her videos and became a fan.

But on 11th June I was scrolling through her best friend Sarah’s Instagram profile and I saw someone’s comment about someone being shot. 

At first, I was confused. So I googled Christina Grimmie and click the news tab. And I saw the news that Christina Grimmie was shot by a gun.

I was devastated. The next few days I followed all the updates and one day I broke down and started sobbing. I cried and I asked my mom why God did this to her. She was such a good person. How could God do this?

We(me and my family) decided that we would go to church and do something to pray for Christina Grimmie’s soul’s peace. 

So on 19th June 2016, we lit a candle at church after asking permission from the Father and we stayed for the evening prayer that day and something happened. Since then I started believing in God for the first time. 

I listen to Christina’s songs sometimes and I also share them on my social media profiles. I also try to attend the yearly concerts that are conducted by the Christina Grimmie foundation(NGO for supporting gun violence victims) every June 10. 


I know this was personal and not related to mental health or consciousness or anti-casteism, but this could help you find peace of mind

Death is not real. When I remember Christina I remember her as a beautiful soul who is with God. We are immortal. We are souls on a journey of self-discovery. So we are never going to die. We are eternal.

This is because death that kills something forever is a concept that doesn’t make sense. How can I, who is the eternal soul, die? God is there!

Thank you for reading this blog post. Please check out her YouTube channel and comment- 

In your life, what made you feel like God is there?

How to deal with anxiety?

In this blog post, I will share some 8 tips on how to deal with anxiety. 

As you might be knowing, I have anxiety and I have learnt to reduce it and live my life with it.

I had social anxiety since I was a teenager and it was both a boon and a bane. I learnt a lot from facing my anxiety.

Other than the advice that my psychiatrist and psychologist gave me, there are my own insights.

I will write a blog post on my psychogists’ advice another day but today I want to share how to deal with anxiety.

Here they are-

  1. Do what you are passionate about

When we do what we are passionate about we become more relaxed and happier. This leads to confidence and peace of mind and calm. It helps us deal with anxiety better.

Living with purpose helps us become more confident and gives us the motivation to overcome anxiety. 

  1.  Take extra responsibility and initiative

This is what increases our mental strength and makes us more resilient. If we take more responsibility we will be more active and busy. We’ll also get the confidence to face our anxiety and fears. 

  1. Dance like nobody’s watching(live a moral life and not care what people think of us)

If we want to live a full life, we have to not care about what people think about us. We need to dance like nobody’s watching. 

But in reality, people do watch when we dance in public. And so we need to become good human beings. We need to be selfless and caring, in a non-people-pleasing way.

  1. Sitting down and calmly observing your feelings

I do this almost every time I get anxious. I don’t rush things. I take 5mins of silence and just observe my feelings. This gives me space and the clarity of mind to make a good decision.

  1. Listen to inspiring songs

This is a surefire way to convert anxiety into inspiration. It almost always works. I like to listen to Shakira and Sia and some EDM songs.

  1. Tell yourself “LIFE IS HARD” 

You won’t believe me but it works like a charm. This is one of my truths and most people’s truths. 

“Life is hard and not facing anxiety is not helping you. You will be stuck and fall behind and waste valuable time if you don’t face your anxiety. No one cares to expect your family whether you have anxiety or not. Other people only see that you are a success or a failure. So get up and fight.”

I say something similar to myself.

  1. You don’t have to give a 100% effort

You just need to get up and fight. Winning or losing isn’t in your hands but trying is. So try. You just have to get started.

  1. If you can’t overcome anxiety for some reason, then don’t blame yourself, accept yourself

Acceptance is powerful. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses. Not everyone is built the same way. You feel anxious to do public speaking but maybe you can edit videos pretty well. Work on your strengths and deal with your weaknesses. And forgive yourself for not being perfect.

Thank you for reading this blog post. Please comment- 

Which tip will you use this week for dealing with anxiety?

Disclaimer: This is not medical advice. I am not a psychologist or a psychiatrist. If you want medical advice, please contact a psychologist or a psychiatrist.

Trying: The Secret Of The Universe

What is the secret of the universe that moves mountains, that accomplishes the impossible, that gives power to the good people, that makes truth win, that echoes through eternity the truth that cannot be denied?

I say it is in trying. Tenacity, trying, persistence, sticking with it.

This is the secret of the universe. It is in trying that we find success, even if we fail.

There are no shortcuts and even if there is, unless you try the eleventh time after failing 10 times, you will not succeed.

A few days ago I was very anxious of going outside my house. And I was laying in bed thinking why was I not able to study or do something consistently. And I laying in bed and saying to myself,”I am unable to go.”

But something happened. My mother asked me to get up and get ready to go. Even though I repeated my mantra “I am unable to go.” , my mother force me to get up by playing some music on the TV.

Now it is a smart TV and the controls are advanced. But my mother tried again and again to figure it out and what I saw in that moment was a mother’s unending love and tenacity for her child. She eventually figured it out and played some Santhali songs.

And I got up and we went outside as planned.

What I want to say through this anecdote is that love moves mountains. Tenacity, trying, persistence are the qualities in a person who can move mountains.

By moving mountains, I mean doing what seems impossible. It is truly inspiring.

This is why trying matters. Trying matters because it is an act of faith. You don’t know whether you will succeed or not. But you are giving your best to it despite all possibilities of failure.

Thank you for reading this blog post. I am grateful for you reading this post. Please answer this question in the comments section- On a scale of 1 to 10 how much do you agree that “trying” is the secret of the universe?

What Will Make You The Happiest?

Although this insight comes from my experience, I believe that what will make you the happiest is being yourself.

Be unique, quirky, different, find your own truth, be yourself, don’t live a common life, don’t do what is conventional, always seek your truth, etc.

Let me tell you a story. When I started writing I had no idea that I would fall in love with the process of writing and the benefits that come with writing. It led me to discover my truth instead of accepting some fixed doctrine.

Sometimes I fall into the trap of following religion or capitalism or materialism or some philosophy or some other ideology which is always a trap of finding your truth.

For example, one day some three years ago approximately, I reading Bhagavad Gita As It Is. And reading it felt good but then after a month I joined ISKCON’s Satsang and started absorbing the ideology in my mind.

I am not saying that there’s no truth in spiritual teachings. What I am saying is that your truth is not an ideology, it’s your inner wisdom.

No amount of ideology can replace your inner wisdom, your truth.

So as you might infer, I stopped going to ISKCON satsangs for various reasons but one of them was the heavy use of Hindu mythology.

I still read the Gita from time to time but I don’t subscribe to one ideology.

Now you may think what does being yourself look like?

Although I am far from perfect but for me, I journal every day and I write in my blog sometimes. This helps me observe what I am thinking daily and stay on track with living my truth.

I believe in hope and all things real like honesty, love, faith, generosity, etc. And I have social anxiety and so sometimes I am unable to be generous to all people, but I try my best to have hope most of the time.

Overcoming social anxiety is something I have to work on but that’s just what comes with the package that is called me.

Being yourself is also full of struggles. Choosing commerce or arts instead of science stream is hard when no one in your family is from commerce or arts. Choosing to work in a corporate job is hard when all your family members and relatives work in the government.

But it comes with the knowledge that you are being you. You are living life from your inner wisdom.

Have you ever travelled solo to some new place? I did. When I was in class 10, age 14, I went to the city to eat in a restaurant alone skipping tuition classes. My parents were worried thinking about where I had gone. But I returned home safely.

Also, I had done stupid things all my life with friends or alone.

Something inside me guided me. And I believe the more we allow this guidance to guide us in new situations, the wiser we become.

This is what fuelled pioneers- freedom, adventure, and self-expression.

But you may think that spiritual teachings ask us to find these values in ourselves- to find God in yourself, in man.

I guess you could say if finding God is what inspires you, then that is your truth. If someone is inspired by adventure, then that is their truth.


Swami Vivekananda taught humanity to believe in oneself.

 And that’s why I say what will make you happiest is to be yourself, to live by your truth, to believe in yourself, and to be original and truly free.

Thank you for reading this blog post. Please share this blog post and answer this one question-

What is your truth that you believe in?

What Is Hope To Me? (Warning: Sensitive Mental Health Story)

Hope to me is an angelic force that knows when I need answers most, when I need to learn a lesson, when I need to suffer, when I need to realise the truth about a situation and when the right time comes I need to surrender.


I remember after my major psychotic episode in 2017, I was taken to the hospital. And I was so scared. I thought strange thoughts and was so scared.

When the doctor came, he asked something which I don’t remember. But I said, “I love you”.

The doctor smiled and said something like “You love me?”

Then I forgot what happened. My parents visited me and I was relieved.

Later the hospital referred me to NIMHANS, Bangalore.

I had no hope except my belief that there’s something higher in existence that is most true and divine.

So I said,” I love you” to the doctor. Not because he was beautiful or something else. But because I was scared. I was so scared of myself, so scared of my thoughts and I had no confidence in myself during my psychotic episode. I had to believe in that invisible higher truth/force which most probably is the expression of the words ”I love you”.

Love is, in my opinion, one of the closest expressions of truth.

Maybe I said it because I was scared. But that’s what I felt would keep me sane.

And I was referred to NIMHANS, where they treated me further and I made many new friends.

Slowly things got better.

And things are much better now. I haven’t had to go through psychosis since 2017 and I am well on my way to graduating college and finding work.


I think things are never bad indefinitely. Life gets better. There’s hope. And there’s family, friends, work, truth, etc.

As the famous proverb says- This Too Shall Pass. I too say “This Too Shall Pass”.

Thank you for reading this blog post on what is hope to me. Please comment, what is hope to you in a few words?

Why It’s Ok To Not Be Spiritual

In this blog post, I write why it’s ok to not be spiritual.

I will write my opinion here and it’s not necessarily correct or scientifically verifiable. 

Why I Am Not Spiritual

I was listening to Ramakrishna Mission’s Swami Sarvapriyananda’s talk on focus, self-confidence and selflessness yesterday and I felt inspired by him. I got so inspired that I studied my academic books for a long time yesterday.

Today I was listening to his talk on Brahman. And I remembered that I get scared when I listen to and think about these spiritual topics. 

I think this happens because I have some psychological trauma or neurosis that triggers fear in me. I don’t know if this is scientifically true.

So I am not spiritual in the sense that I don’t meditate, read scriptures, or do any kind of yoga. But I have faith in God.

There may be many people who are not spiritual. Maybe they don’t have the time or they don’t prioritise it or maybe they have fear in their minds like me. 

And it’s OK. It’s totally fine if one doesn’t do spirituality or believes in it.

I believe that spirituality is about being yourself. It’s about realising your faults and blessings and becoming a good human being. 

A good human being in behaviour and thinking in every aspect of life and with all human beings and living organisms and the environment. 

A big part of being spiritual in my opinion is to realise that you are not perfect and that you can be a better human being. It’s about prioritising “self-realisation” and by that, I mean realising your highest good nature.

Example of Addiction Recovery

Suppose you are a substance addict. You clearly are not being yourself and not being a human being you can be proud of. 

In that case, you need to go to the doctor and go through the addiction recovery process. And you will become a better human being in that process.

In this way, you are (self-) realising your potential goodness to reality. I think that in the first step of the twelve-step program by Alcoholics Anonymous, one needs to admit their problems honestly. 

twelve-step program
a distinctive approach to overcoming addictive, compulsive, or behavioral problems that was developed initially in Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) to guide recovery from alcoholism and is now used, often in an adapted form, by a number of other self-help groups. The twelve-step program in AA asks each member to (a) admit that he or she cannot control his or her drinking; (b) recognize a supreme spiritual power, which can give the member strength; (c) examine past errors, a process that is carried out with another member who serves as sponsor; (d) make amends for these errors; (e) develop a new code and style of life; and (f) help other alcoholics who are in need of support. Variations of this model also exist for drug abuse and addiction, gambling addiction, and other problems.

APA Dictionary of Psychology[1]

So what’s that? That’s realising your faults. That’s moving towards self-realisation.

You don’t need to read spiritual books to be spiritual. You are spiritual by your very nature.

But in the common sense of the word, I think it’s not necessary to be spiritual. And it’s Ok if you are not.

Even though I am not spiritual, I will probably listen to Swamiji’s talks on non-spiritual topics. And continue occasional deep breathing relaxation techniques when necessary. 

Maybe the thing is my time hasn’t arrived yet to dive into spirituality. Maybe that’s the case. Who knows? I will just have faith in God and do the right thing now and when the time comes.


Thank you for reading this blog post on why it’s ok to not be spiritual. Please comment- Are you spiritual? You are also welcome to explain why you are or aren’t spiritual.


  1. APA Dictionary of Psychology -Twelve-Step Program,

Thoughts on Dickinson (Season 1) – Series on Apple TV+ (Hope)

I watched season 1 of Dickinson series on Apple TV+ (on the life of Emily Dickinson, the American poet) probably two months ago. And I loved it and wanted to share my thoughts on it. I didn’t get the time to watch season 2 but I will watch it soon.

So first of all the thing that makes me love the series is the personality and acting of Hailee Steinfield as Emily Dickinson. I think the acting of Emily Dickinson is exaggerated in order to make the series more entertaining but I have no doubt that the lessons from Emily Dickinson’s life are accurately conveyed.

Here are some things I loved about the series-

  1. The personality of Emily Dickinson
  2. The feminism
  3. The expression of a complex individual in the form of poetry

Personality of Emily Dickinson

I loved how the personality of Emily Dickinson is portrayed in the series. Even though anyone who had seen Emily Dickinson in real life is not alive now and even though her personality may be exaggerated I feel inspired and I enjoy watching her in the series.

She seemed very interesting, even though she was not a published poet, even though she didn’t marry and even though she was dependent on her family for survival.

I think the acting is fabulously done by Hailee Steinfield. Hailee herself has a great personality of her own but in the series where she plays Emily Dickinson, she acts as a daughter, sister, friend, lover, feminist, etc.

The use of the modern English Language instead of old English makes her more relatable. Also, the dialogues sound really cool.

The Feminism

I remember that Emily would raise her voice again patriarchy and have a very liberal perspective.

She seemed like a very progressive-minded person and ahead of her time. What she thought two hundred years ago, we are thinking now.

She also mocked the fact that only men could do certain things and women were not allowed to do them, things such as attending university and so on.

The Expression Of A Complex Individual In The Form Of Poetry

Now, this is purely my opinion that she was a complex individual. She had depth in her character. She was extraordinary at writing poems and was a brilliant thinker.

When I read her poems I feel strong emotions. I am moved by her poems and I even have her poem on my laptop wallpaper.

Her poems are true, authentic and bold. And I am sure there are many other adjectives to describe her poems. But to me, her words are like a shining ray of light in the darkness of mundane life.

And all that comes from Emily Dickinson, who never published her poems in her lifetime?
At every point in time while watching the series I could relate to Emily because I am similar to her, not as a poet or a writer but as a person who loves expression. This is purely my opinion.


Now the point I am trying to make by sharing this review of Dickinson(Apple TV+ series) is that of the message of Emily Dickinson’s life.

I think her life teaches hope in a person’s life. How she decided to sacrifice her fame as a poet and kept writing even though no one would read and appreciate it in her life except a few people, is inspiring.

Although her poems were discovered and published later after her death, I think that the dedication to living a life where she followed her passion for writing, is inspiring.

Thank you for reading this blog post. Please comment- Have you read any of Emily Dickinson’s poems?

Being Emotional Is Not Bad For Men

In this blog post, I will write, in my opinion, about being emotional and how it is healthy and shouldn’t be seen as a bad thing for both men and women but especially men.

Let me tell you a story before diving deeper into the topic.

Story Time

I recently watched Tokyo Ghoul, the anime. The protagonist of the anime series is Kaneki who is an emotional person and likes reading books.

But he has low self-esteem. And he went through physical torture from an enemy which left him traumatized. He is also mentally unstable and has developed an alternate personality to cope with the trauma which I am not sure how much of it is scientifically accurate.

His whole journey throughout seasons 1 through the last season is to integrate his personality and introspect in his dreams through various events and external conflicts.

Ultimately, in the end, he emerges victoriously and becomes confident and integrated and lives a happy life after conquering his enemies and bringing peace among ghouls and humans.

I am sure he loves reading even now after integrating his personality. He is an emotional and happy man. 

Deep Dive

Now let’s dive deep.

In my opinion, being emotional has nothing to do with being weak or being less manly. It is totally normal to be emotional.

We can cry after watching a sad movie, laugh heartily at a joyful event, express grief over someone’s death. 

We need not suppress our emotions as men. 

I don’t know exactly how much suppressing our emotions harms our mental health because I am not a psychiatrist. But I strongly believe that no feelings are bad. All feelings must be felt. 

So the next time anyone tries to make you feel ashamed about expressing your feelings, just ignore them and express your feelings.

I know that it’s harder than the way I say it but we need to try. Maybe you are in the wrong place if you are not allowed to express your feelings.

It’s not selfish of you. It is totally normal to express your feelings in a healthy way.


Being emotional is not bad because expressing your feelings is normal and natural in my opinion for both men and women.

Thank you for reading this blog post. Please comment-

How do you feel when you or someone else makes you suppress your emotions? Do you feel good or not so good? And why do you think that happens?