Derive happiness from constructive pastimes: Vice-Chancellor UPES
Dr. Sunil Rai, Vice-Chancellor, UPES, has had a diversified career, with 20 years in academics, 21 years with the Indian Navy and 2 years in the corporate world. He has steered setting up of large campuses, developed integrated enterprise solutions for organisations and helped create state-of-the-art teaching-learning infrastructure.
In a conversation with Mansha Dhingra, Dr. Rai shares his insights on how students should remain positive and determined during these difficult times.
As social distancing and stay-at-home orders are extended throughout the country, everybody is learning how to adjust to the situation. Though this pandemic can feel like it will be endless, it will eventually pass. Staying motivated can help make your life easier, shift your attention from stressful circumstances, and create an optimistic outlook for the future. Dr. Sunil Rai, Vice-Chancellor, UPES, recommends doing the following to induce positive thinking:
Express gratitude: Being thankful reminds us of how special, beautiful, and blessed our lives are even when we are facing stressful situations. Practicing gratitude can have a huge impact on your overall mood and perspective. Positive emotions promote happiness and create an upward spiral in your life. Students can derive happiness from reading something enriching, spending time in cooking or dabbling in a hobby. Letting go of grudges and bitterness can make way for improved health and peace of mind.
Hard work and determination: There is no denying that the road to success is an arduous one, beset with all sorts of difficulties, but at the same time, it brings out the best in you and strengthens your resolve to reach your goals. If you are making constant efforts to overcome a difficult situation with a positive attitude and are determined to find a way out, the world will come to your help.
Don’t lose hope: Seeing the light amidst darkness is a lesson we all should learn. At a time when the pandemic is wreaking havoc in our lives, there is an urgent need to approach every task with a strong will and determination. Do not worry about failure; just do your best.
Find pleasure in simple things: It is so simple to be happy, but it is so difficult to be simple. Finding moments of peace at the moment can be a daunting task. Meditation, yoga, and spending time in the lap of nature are some of the best things students can do to cope with anxiety and stress. A balanced diet and regular physical activity every day can also help boost students’ mood.
Utilize your time: Students should use this time to make a difference in their lives. This is the ideal time to explore new learning strategies that support long-term knowledge retention. Organising video calls with a group of peers allows students to build on existing knowledge and learn from one another. Students should work on enhancing their interpersonal and teamwork skills and focus on goals for the future.
Don’t be too hard on yourself: Everybody makes mistakes. But you should not blame yourself for your mistakes. Dwelling on your mistakes will exacerbate the negative feelings you have towards yourself. When you blame yourself, you see yourself in a negative light. When you accept responsibility for your actions, you can focus on your positive traits. Therefore, be kind to yourself.