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Article: Why Are We ALL Chasing Dreams? Stop and think!...

Why Are We ALL Chasing Dreams? Stop and think!...

Why Are We ALL Chasing Dreams? Stop and think!...



We are taught to chase our dreams. Have several houses, become a millionaire, get that Porsche, have 2.4 children, get a body like Arnie! Once we achieve these dreams, we will be closer to happiness. As a society, we are results driven. Not caring how we get there as long as we do.

What I’ve found in my years as a doctor, is that the process of chasing these dreams can and does cause a large amount of stress in our lives. Who cares right? Stress is a part of life right? Wrong!

According to the World Health Organization, stress has been classified as the health epidemic of the 21st century. The general level of worry and unhappiness in the modern world is creating a national epidemic of stress

Chronic stress (which we all have to a certain extent) can have serious long term consequences on our lives from type 2 diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease and even Alzeihmer’s disease. We think we can just burn the candle at both ends and there is no harm. The reality is very different. I see patients daily who are literally stressing themselves to an early grave. So how do we look at this differently?

Here are a few useful tips:

1/ Don’t get on the bandwagon

The increasing world of social media where everyone presents a perfect image of themselves, naturally puts us under more pressure where we have to be better, more perfect image of ourselves. That involves digging deeper and pushing more.
We are social people. We naturally want to be part of groups, which means we tend to follow each other and trends once they have formed.

We are taught to chase dreams and keep pushing ourselves until we achieve. Does that lead to happiness once we achieve it? Maybe momentarily but we always want more and more.

One simple tip is to be more present to your surroundings; focus on the person next to you rather than on your phone. Actually call someone and have a chat rather than text them.


2/ Stop comparing

Adverts - compare yourself; I recently saw an advert where it was saying don’t you wish you were more radiant like some people that you meet. Marketing executives are smart; they know they need you to buy a product to make you feel more ‘complete’. They create a need in you that you didn’t realise you had. That need makes you want to push more

They say doctors are the worst patients. Well, it’s true. I do this a lot. I think when you start medical school, you naturally want to excel and we are taught to compete to become a smarter doctor, every speciality is a competition and we are taught to keep pushing. Even now, I tend to compare myself to my peers and friends/family members do the same. It is almost like an inherent aspect of ourselves that we can’t get away with.

Rather than comparing and looking at what’s wrong with yourself; start thinking about how you can feel better - maybe simple things like a glass of water, a hug, more time with the family, a massage - anything that can allow you to relax and take it easy a bit more! Sometimes even have a social media free day is really gratifying!

3/ Focus on one thing that you are passionate are and enjoy good at

We are taught we can be great at everything - an accomplished musician, artist, martial artist, so we tend to do loads of things. A patient of mine informed me - focus on one thing that you're passionate about and become excellent at that. Naturally, things will fall into place. What do I mean?

When you do something you enjoy or are passionate about, it is naturally a stress buster and allows you to get immersed into something that is yours only. The subject or topic is almost unimportant – my biggest tip is to do only it's easier and more enjoyable if we choose something we are interested in.

What would you do differently? Do you think you are 'chasing the dreams' of others or yourself? Join us tomorrow for an exciting live discussion on zoom/facebook live tomorrow 'Stop Surviving, Start Thriving' with Doctor Shonpal at
- 12pm UK time
- 5:30pm India time

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