He is a small time vendor, moving about selling clothes on the streets. He comes to the hospital regularly as he has multiple chronic health related problems to add on which, last year he suffered burns on his back due to an accident. He also has a family to support but hats off to him. I have never heard him complaining of fatigue or depression.
He is always smiling and cheerful. For this reason, I have high regards for him. I wish I could present him as a model to all those people who are healthy otherwise but always have some psychosomatic complaint.
This case reinforces my belief that true strength lies in the mind. People have many misconceptions regarding strength. Dictionary meaning of the word strength is the state of being strong.
Many people correlate strength with good food. For them, eating a high calorie rich food or nutritionally rich food is essential to keep the body strong. For some, strength is equivalent to weight or muscle mass, particularly in men.
Physical exercise is yet another thing which is considered important by people for maintaining force and vigour of the body. You need all these things in small amount to maintain the body. But none of these is giving real strength to the body.
You cannot strengthen the body of a dead person by feeding him or moving him about. Life is essential for individual body functions. You need life to run a body and a mind to run life. Therefore to be strong one needs a strong mind.
Mind is the chief executive director of the body. In face of some trouble in the body, it is the mind which tells a person that all is not well.
Response of an individual to real or perceived pain or illness depends more on the mental built of the person.
Some persons can tolerate much pain and keep on smiling, whereas some cry out even with a small cut or bruise. The limbic system of the brain is responsible for the emotional response to pain. Limbic system is in turn governed by the conditioning of the mind.
There are various examples where seemingly strong people back out in time of some crisis. Great people of the world who changed history were never strong muscle men.
One has to see pictures of Mahatma Gandhi and see how frail he looked but had the power to change the colonial British rule. Mother Teresa, Nelson Mandela, Churchill, all of them were strong mentally and thus were able to do more than others and make a mark for others to follow.
A strong mind can be built only by self discipline. It is said that to be successful in life one has to tame the mind. If one tends to be tempted to follow his mind all the time, he cannot become strong as the mind would not necessarily take one on a proper path.
The first step in strengthening the mind as advised by wise men is to do all the work decided for the day on the same day, irrespective of the hurdles.
Putting off work for another day tends to weaken the mind, progressively. Commitments should always be honoured.
Another important thing is to speak the truth. When a man speaks a lie, he has to say many more lies to cover it. This effort tires the mind and makes it weak.
Power of speaking it is such that, it is said that if someone speaks only the truth all the time, whatever he speaks can turn true. This used to be the power involved in blessings and curses of sages and wise men being materialized in ancient times. Bitter truth likely to hurt someone should be avoided, but one can be discretely quiet in such matters.
Avoiding jealousy and being happy in other’s happiness is an exercise which keeps the mind relaxed and cheerful all the time and also makes it strong. Positive and creative thinking is also very useful in this regard.
No individual can follow all these all the time. Human weaknesses do exist. But every person can make small efforts daily to overcome these weaknesses and improve oneself.
Addictions of any kind not only damage the mind but also weaken the mind. Therefore it is advisable to avoid use of any addicting substances like alcohol, tobacco, cocaine, e.t.c.
Daily prayers and meditation are very useful in mental relaxation and also help to make the mind strong.
It is important to know that the mind is supreme governing all aspects of life. One who has a strong mind will be above others and more successful in both his personal and professional life.
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