A note on World Suicide Prevention Day

World Suicide Prevention Day 2020 - World Suicide Prevention Day History,  Significance, and World Suicide Prevention Day

World suicide prevention day is observed on 10th September to create awareness about it.

I got to know about this day after seeing several posts on social media. Being someone,living with anxiety, I do know the importance of creating awareness regarding mental health and suicide.

The rates of suicide have increased rapidly in the lockdown period. I empathize with any person going through so much pain that numbs them and makes them want to end their life to escape it.

I genuinely wish that such people do find help and be saved! These are some little steps that we can take to prevent suicide:

Be kind

Be kind to every person! You have no idea what someone is going through and how much impact your words can have on them. Your kindness can give them a reason to believe in the goodness in the world and know that there’s hope.

Be a good listener

Listen when someone wants to express their feelings or sorrow with you. Do not judge a person when they try to talk about how low they are feeling. Don’t try to make them feel that they are just being negative or dramatic. Be a good person and be there for them.

Spread love

Remind them how much they mean to you. People with mental health issues often feel worthless and unloved. Your small acts of kindness and love will make a huge difference. If you suspect that someone is having a hard time, keep checking on them, maybe through a phone call, message or meeting in person.

Counselling therapy

If you feel that someone is struggling with their mental health, you can encourage them to seek professional help and support them throughout their healing process! Prioritizing mental health conditions should be considered as normal as prioritizing physical health issues.

I am sure these little actions will help save lives and spread more love in the world! Sending loads of love and healing to someone dealing with mental health issues!

Birthdays with a chronic illness

Last few years had been quite tough for me . Being diagnosed with a chronic disorder has obviously shocked me. I was already diagnosed with PCOD and now got diagnosed with Hashimoto’s thyroditis which is also an autoimmune disease! I remember my nutrition teacher telling us about how people with an autoimmune condition are prone to have more than 1 of them. This makes me more anxious daily! An autoimmune disorder is when your own antibodies attack your own healthy tissues mistaking them for foreign invaders. Birthdays remind me of the pain. This make me a little less excited about them and more anxious. On every birthday, I just wish the coming year be more peaceful and lead me to the path of healing! Being someone who loves traveling and exploring, I don’t want to limit myself due to ill health. Only people with a chronic illness know the struggle of living each day with it. While every healthy person out there might be busy chasing their goals and dreams and might get disappointed on not achieving them, a person with a chronic illness only prioritizes one thing in their life the most: their health!Many of my dreams got shattered due to health issues which lead to brain fog, poor energy levels . But these days I am just grateful for the days I feel fresh and light. Birthdays are also a reminder to us about our achievements in life , about how far we have come. In case of someone with a chronic illness, birthdays might remind them of their broken dreams and their ill health right now. They might also remember their childhood days when they were perfectly healthy and wished they felt the same right now.

Similarly , all these thoughts were troubling me the night before my birthday. However when my birthday finally arrived, I was showered with so much love by everyone that my anxiety just brushed off. I felt special with the fact that there are so many people who genuinely care about me even though they might not be able to express it always. I felt thankful to god for all the amazing people in my life.

Here is a message for anyone living with a chronic illness: Even though you might have bad days, I wish you might have more good ones! You have come a long way and you deserve many more years full of happiness and joy! You are loved by so many people and you deserve to live life to the fullest! Sending you loads of love and healing. ❤

The Virgo girl

Virgo (23rd August to 22nd September)

There was a girl who loved everything simple and pretty. She wasn’t very social but she had a few friends whom she considered very close. She was an old fashioned girl who loved spending time with her family. Good food was something she craved, everywhere she went. Though she was quite shy, she loved knowing about different cultures, trying out new cuisines, finding beauty in every place she went to !

She wanted to heal people’s wounds and rejuvenate mother earth’s soul. She healed people but nature helped her refresh and shower her with healing powers. Her room was well organized and her wall was decorated with things she loved. She had her favorite quotes attached on her study table. There were plants on every little corner of her house as she considered them to be her pets. Her personal diary was her best friend with whom she shared her secrets and her anxious racing thoughts.

She was very sincere and determined in everything she did. She had dreams in her eyes just like the colourful rainbow. Some of her dreams shattered due to some reasons but she chose to find happiness in every other opportunity God gave her. As she was blessed with natural healing abilities, helping others gave her pleasure. She found happiness in the little things but making others happy was something she loved more! Being an empath, there were times she broke down with seeing people’s pain. But she balanced her life with some meditation and grounding.

She considered health superior to wealth and the material pleasures of life. She loved deeply and appreciated loyalty and effort . She loved poems and handwritten letters rather than precious gifts. She was not talkative but was a good listener who would listen to all your sorrows and give you the best advice.

Though, she had her bad days, she chose to smile and look at the bright side!

A message from an introvert .

Being an introvert since a long time now, I have understood quite a lot about introversion. I would like to explain about how it feels like to be an introvert.

We introverts don’t like being surrounded by too many people. It often makes us feel uncomfortable. But that doesn’t mean that we don’t like people. Its just that we need our own space in which we feel more peaceful. Introverts prefer being around a few people at a time, preferably the ones they feel comfortable with. They may have a few close friends. Introverts don’t casually form bonds with everyone but they always have meaningful and more loving bonds and friendships. You can always rely on an introvert. An introvert won’t prefer being in a group but would rather love having a quality time with a friend or two. Having deep, meaningful conversations is their favorite thing as they love to think and feel everything deeply. This is another reason why they are also often termed as sensitive.

However, sadly, introverts are one of the most misunderstood people. People consider their quietness/shyness for weakness or rudeness. If you are an introvert , you must have often heard phrases like, “Why are you so quiet?”, “Why don’t you speak?’ etc. People often treat introverts like they are not normal or they lack something. This same behaviour from the world around may make them feel bad about being an introvert. They may start feeling like something is wrong with them. But the truth is that there is nothing wrong about being an introvert! Its just your personality! Introverts score low on extraversion whereas extroverts score high on it. There is nothing wrong on being on a lower or on a higher end of a personality scale. Every personality type has its own strenghths! Similarly, introverts also have a boon of noticing minor details that others may miss. They have higher empathy and are more loyal and trustworthy. Introverts have the power to feel other’s pain and they are the ones who will listen to your problems without ever judging you. If you are an introvert, I can totally relate to you ! You are wonderful and capable of amazing things! Don’t ever change yourself for the sake of every one else! Love yourself for who you are and live life on your own terms! ❤

-your introvert friend

Everything you can do in quarantine.

CDC Approved Cleaning Products for Coronavirus | Shape

2020 has been a very challenging year to all of us.The deadly pandemic of COVID-19 has infected millions of people and killed many. The most effective way to stop the spread of corona virus is by social distancing and quarantine. Thus, we all are supposed to stay at home for days to prevent the spread of the virus. The lockdown may be peaceful and relaxing to some but it may lead to a lot of boredom, restlessness and anxiety to some. However, it’s all about our perspective. Lets make the most of it! You can spend a lot of quality time with your family and also focus more on yourself. So, I am going to list out a certain things to do in your quarantine time which will help you feel better and utilize your time well.

Meditate:

How to Meditate - Mindful

Start the day with positive thoughts and meditate for atleast 5 minutes and check how your mind is floodedi with joy and peace. Just close your eyes and focus on your breathing. You can also try some breathing exercises like pranayam, kapalbhatti.

Cook food for your family:

Rava Uttapa - Madhurasrecipe.com

You can start cooking meals for your whole family.It can be a simple meal like breakfast, making tea or coffee. But this will definitely improve your cooking skills. If you had been cooking before the quarantine period, then you can try out new recipes. You can get really good recipes from your family members or you would even find many on the internet.

Eat immunity boosting foods:

15 Foods to Boost Immune System - How to Increase Immunity

Right now, having a good immunity is really going to help us fight the virus. You can include simple immunity boosting food in your diet. Vitamin C helps you build your immunity. Thus, you can consume Vitamin C rich fruits such as oranges, amlas. You can drink lemon juice with warm water, first thing in the morning. It will help build your immunity and prevent you from catching cough and cold.Also consume loads of fruits and vegetables. Add ginger, garlic and other herbs in your food items. You can also have warm milk with turmeric.

Workout:

File:Man Doing Yoga Cartoon.svg - Wikimedia Commons

Being in home all day is obviously going to affect your physical activity levels and make you eat more. Thus some physical activity is necessary to maintain fitness. Also exercising will not only maintain your physical health but also your mental health. This is because of the release of feel good hormones which will keep you in a good and pleasant mood. You can excercise for some time or do yoga!

Work/Study for a fixed period:

If you have got work from home, you can try doing your work first. If you are a student , you can set a fixed time in the day or on alternate days to study. Thus, after you are done with it, you can do the other things without feeling guilty about not studying the whole day. Also, you will feel good after studying for some time. You can set the time even as less as an hour or half. In the end, it will contribute to a lot!

Clean your home:

11 Benefits of Regularly Cleaning Your Home | Fantastic Cleaners AU

As you have a lot of time, you can start cleaning your home. You can clean and organize small sections of your home daily. Like, you can clean your study table one day, the other day you can clean your kitchen cupboard. You can also start organizing your home well. This will also give a lot of mental clarity and make you feel good.

Read books and watch movies:

The Power of Reading Books From Different Genres - The Writing ...

This is an amazing opportunity to start reading good books and lose yourself in them. This will also keep your mind busy, help you gain knowledge, give you perspective and help you fight boredom. You can read novels or also comics or magazines. If you don’t have any, there are a lot of e-books and pdfs available on the internet.

You can even start binge watching various series or movies which were on your list but you never had time.

Play board games:

When Is a Game of Scrabble Over?

Playing board games with your family is an amazing way to bond with your family and have some fun in your home itself. It will also be like an exercise to your brain!Also, it will help you to decrease your screen time.

Do what you love:

D'source Tools and Materials | Acrylic Painting | D'Source Digital ...

Along with everything else, don’t forget to do what you truly love. Give some time to enjoy your hobby. This could be anything like writing,sketching, painting, playing an instrument, singing, dancing, cooking. Just let your creative side out!

Contact your family/friends:

Video calls to CUBA ▷ Best App 2019

This is really a hard time for us and we probably are missing our loved ones a lot. But let’s thank the technology today through which we can easily get in touch with others. Now is the time when we should keep in touch with all our loved ones though not physically but through cellphones. Though far apart, we are together in this!

Be grateful about being safe and healthy:

Gratitude Checklist - Mission.org - Medium

Last but not the least, let’s be grateful that we are safe in our homes! Be thankful to all the brave warriors(doctors,health care workers,researchers, police, government employees, sanitation workers, media, drivers, groccery store keepers etc.)who are working day and night to protect us from the virus and keep our life going.Be grateful about everything you have: your home where you are safe, food supplies, water, entertainment, internet etc even in middle of the crisis. Let’s pray for those affected and hope for their recovery.

This is a tough time for all of us. But, we surely are going to overcome this by obeying the simple guidelines: Maintaining hygiene(specially respiratory hygiene) and social distancing. Sending you all loads of love!

5 Reasons why you should visit Konkan.

Konkan is a region located in the western coastline of Maharashtra. It is known for its scenic beauty and nature’s abundance.You can travel here by roadways or by train. I visited my village Shrivardhan in Raigad district which is only 5 hours away from Mumbai city. I came here with my family this vacation and discovered various reasons why you should take a break from your busy lives and visit Konkan:

1)Nature at it’s best:

You will find large and dense trees everywhere around you! These trees will definitely make you feel calm and help you relax! There won’t be any noisy vehicles and you’ll find yourself at peace.You will find a variety of trees and would also find juicy fruits hanging on the branches! You will spot monkeys, cows and pretty birds too!

Wadi(a cluster of coconut,betelnut and other trees)
Betel nuts
chickoo trees
Vasru(calf ) resting

2) Divine temples:

There are many beautiful temples to be visited here. The temples do have a great architecture and a pleasant aura.

Audumbar vasini [ goddess residing under audumbar(cluster fig)tree]
Somjaidevi temple
Somjaidevi
Harihareshwar temple

3) Serene beaches:

Konkan is known for it’s breathtaking beaches! There are a number of beaches you can visit and the best part is that these beaches are not crowded and are very clean. You can also enjoy the water sports such as jet ski, banana riding,parasailing etc. Also, you can experience the quad bike rides,horse riding at the beach.

Harihareshwar beach

4) Best paths for long walks and drives:

You will find the paths covered with greenery on both sides accompanied by the chirping of birds. Thus it will be ideal to have long,refreshing walks. Even you should soak yourself in the fresh air during the pleasant rides .

5) Sea food!!

This is the best part about being in Konkan! The sea food cooked here is simple yet the most delicious food ever! You should try a variety of fried fish,prawns,shrimps,crabs. After filling your tummies with such good food, drinking the refreshing sol kadhi will help in digestion.

Pomfret thali
Modak(a sweet delicacy made of rice flour with coconut filling)

These are some of the reasons why Konkan is one of the best places you need to visit to take a break from your busy lives and rejuvenate yourself.

My visit to the refreshing Chota Kashmir in Mumbai!

My friend and I had visited Goregaon for an exhibition but it was postponed so we decided to visit some place nearby to hangout. So, we decided to visit Chota Kashmir and it turned out to be the best decision! Chota Kashmir is a beautiful and vast garden which will make you forget about your worries and help you rejuvenate with its unfiltered nature’s touch. This garden is all about huge trees and colourful flowers all around which did attract pretty butterflies and chirpy birds .

Things to know:

This place is located in the Aarey colony in Goregaon. You can hire an auto from Goregaon station which will cost you around Rs 40.

The entry fees is just Rs 5/ person.

There are food stalls outside the garden.

Things to do here:

1) Relax and breathe in the fresh air.

This place does justice to its name as it really is as cool and serene like Kashmir.It is engulfed in the Aarey forest and thus is untouched from the hustle of the city. There is no noise or polluted air. You can just sit here mindfully and meditate or read a book and find peace.

2)Hiking:

Chota Kashmir is so vast and there are so many paths that you can take which will make you feel you are literally in the forest and not in a garden. If you are a fan of hiking ,you can explore this forest and you will be amazed by its serenity! There are huge green trees all over accompanied by the chirping of the birds.

3) Photography:

If you are a photography enthusiast, you are really gonna love this place! You will find a range of beautiful and wild trees right from huge cactus to coconut trees. Also,the gorgeous flowers and colourful butterflies will be worth capturing in your pictures!

4)Boating in the mini Dal lake

The mini Dal lake is located outside the garden on the opposite side of the highway. There are various games to be played such as dashing car etc in the playing zone. But the best part is the boating here! The cost for paddle boating is Rs 30 for 40 minutes. Paddle boating was the best part of this trip! It was so therapeutic to boat in the calm and soothing waters of the lake. There were a few ducks too! We enjoyed the view of the beautiful sunset.

We had a perfect end to the day with boating in the calm lake and we returned back home feeling much more peaceful !

Fireflies night trek and Camping under a sky full of stars at Prabalmachi.

Prabalmachi is a campsite situated in the Raigad district of Maharashtra. It offers the view of the gigantic Kalavantindurga and Prabalgad fort.

My best friends and I had made a bucket list of the things we want to do together. Trekking and camping was one of them! So, we planned to visit Prabalmachi with a trek group. We were very excited as it was going to be our first trek together and also about seeing the fireflies!

So we left home in the evening and reached Panvel station from Thane station which takes 1 hour.

We met our trek group there. From there we travelled by van in a group of 7 in each van. We reached the base village ‘Thakurvadi’ in 45 minutes. We had a quick introduction session and then we started our trek.

As it was a night trek, we trekked using the torches that we carried. The path was almost plain. There was not much climbing. In about 10 minutes of walking , we reached the starting point of the trek which was a check post where we were supposed to pay an entry fee and our bags were also checked for liquor or cigarettes as it is strictly not allowed .

Then our trek began.Most of the ascend was a very easy plain path where we were just supposed to walk. There were some rocky cliffs. The thing that I loved most about this trek was that there were small stalls after covering short distances. There were 8 such stalls. Thus it gave us a sense of achievement and kept us motivated. Snacks and nimbu sherbat were available at the stalls.

We saw fireflies on 3-4 spots on our way. They were present on the trees. It really was a magical sight! As they blinked, they resembled the stars in the sky . The trees looked like christmas trees which are decorated with lights! We were supposed to be quiet and to turn our torches off as the torch light would have disturbed the fireflies.

Fireflies

We reached on the top in about 3 hours as we stopped at various locations to spot the fireflies. Otherwise, it woud have taken about 2 hours to complete the trek. The local villagers living there provided food to all the trek groups. We whole heartedly had our dinner after our adventurous trek. Vegetarian as well as non vegetarian food was available. Chicken curry, bhakri, chapati, rice, papad was served to us in our non vegetarian dinner. The food was really good and filled our tummies!

our dinner site

Then we were taken to our camp site where tents were arranged for us. 2 people were accommodated in each tent. We settled there and then we were taken to the forest area nearby where there would be more fireflies shown by our guide. We enjoyed the serene view of the bioluminescent fireflies. Then we sat near our campsite from where we could see the city lights below us and listened to some calming music. It felt very peaceful!

city lights

Then we went back to our tents to sleep. Loved the feeling of sleeping under a sky full of stars.The next day we woke up by the crowing sound of the hens early at 5:30. The sky looked beautiful in shades of pink. Then we enjoyed the view of sunrise after some time.

view at 5:30am
sunrise

We freshened up, clicked some pictures and had poha and tea in breakfast.We also bought fresh karvanda which was sold by the villagers . There were many hens and chicks present.

karvanda(conkerberry)
a hen with its chicks

Then we started the descend. We had nimbu paani (lemon juice) in one of the stalls . It took about 1 hour to reach the base village. Then we reached Panvel station by van in an hour. We bid our trekmates goodbye and went back to our homes.

one of the stalls
view of Kalavantindurga and Prabalgad
van

This trek will always be a special one because I made so many wonderful memories with my besties. Also, I would recommend this trek for beginners as it was really a very easy and non tiring one!

Out of all the paths you choose, make sure a few of them are dirt.

John Muir

PLACES TO VISIT IN IGATPURI.

Igatpuri is a small and beautiful hill station in Nashik. It is recommended to visit this place in the rainy season or winter season to enjoy the greenery and pleasant weather . However, you can also visit this place in summer as there are various places to explore here ! Also even though it was summer, it was not sweaty and it was a pleasant climate . I Visited Igatpuri with my family, this summer. We travelled to Igatpuri station from Mumbai. It took about 2 hours to reach .You can also travel there by car or bus which may take 3 hours to reach. We took a car on rent for 2 days to explore the places there.We visited the following amazing places :

Dhammagiri (Myanmar Gate)

Myanmar gate

Dhammagiri is an international meditation academy. Here there is a beautiful photo gallery of Gautam buddha which describes his life story. We also were shown a short 20 minutes video about Dhammagiri . They started a audio tape which guided us to meditate for 10 minutes. It was a calming experience.

Ashoka pillar

Then we were taken to the meditation centre where a guide showed us the places there and told us about the 10 day free meditation course where you have to live there for 10 days with no contact with the outter world.

Meditation cells

Camel valley

It is a valley between 2 mountains where one mountain literally has the shape like that of a camel. It’s on the other side of the highway. There were also some monkeys seen !

Consider The right mountain with the flat sunlit part as the camel’s head and the shadowed part as its hump

Ghatandevi temple

Ghatandevi means Goddess of the ghats. This is a beautiful temple here before the beggining of the ghats. The deity is believed to be the protector of the ghats by the locals.

Ghatandevi

Bhavali dam

There are many dams to be visited here. We visited the Bhavali dam . To see the dam we have to climb many steps . It was a thrilling experience as the steps did not have any railing on the sides for support. As we climbed up ,the steps started getting narrower. Also some steps were damaged. However the view from the top on the other side was worth it! Looking at the serene water was so soothing. As, it was summer , there were very few people . Our driver told us that it is extremely crowded in the rainy season and the sound of the flowing water is so loud that we can’t even hear each other.

Bhavali dam
view after climbing the steps
the other side of the dam

Railway lake

This is a beautiful lake to be visited here. There were some people seen fishing . There were some buffalos seen drinking water on the other side of the lake. It was a scenic view. We sat there for some time to enjoy the cool breeze and view of the calming lake.

Railway lake

Trimbakeshwar temple

Trimbakeshwar temple is a temple of lord Shiva and is one of the 12 Jyotirlingas. It is always crowded here as people come here from far away . We visited this temple on the 2nd day of our trip. It was a 1 hour drive from our hotel at Igatpuri. It was very crowded and there was large queue to enter the temple. There were many other small temples inside. The temple was magnificent.It was so cool inside the temple despite the summer heat outside. There were positive vibes all over.

Trimbakeshwar temple
small temples

Sula vineyards

Then we started our journey to Sula vineyards where we reached in half an hour from Trimbakeshwar. Sula vineyards is a very famous and leading wine industry in India. It is very well maintained and has a cute and colourful decor which makes it very attractive. We have to pay an entry fee of Rs 200.

Wine fields

We were shown the wine making machines and were explained about the wine making process by the guide . For the wine tasting, we have to pay additional Rs 200. They gave us 5 wines to taste and all of them were amazing! The guide told the significance of the 5 wines to us. It was indeed a lovely experience! You can even buy wine from the store here. They also have a restaurant.

Wine barrels
Wine tasting

See. Smell. Swirl. Sip.

Panduleni caves:

After sula vineyards, we visited this wonderful cave . It is said that the Pandavas resided here. It is a group of 24 small caves. To reach the caves , we have to climb some steps . It took around 20 minutes to reach the caves. There was an entry fee of Rs 25.

Steps to reach the caves

From the top you can have a beautiful aerial view of Nashik city.The architecture of the caves is magnificent! There were various small caves and many small rooms inside. It was dark, cool and pleasant inside.

View from the top

If you are planning to visit Igatpuri, you can visit these amazing places here! Keep travelling and exploring!

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