Category: Mind Sciences

Why Do We Feel Nostalgia? The Longing for The Memorable time or An Unpleasant Memory from the Past

Why Do We Feel Nostalgia? The Longing for The Memorable time or An Unpleasant Memory from the Past
By Ahmad Amirali

Today, after a long time, I visited a bookshop, and there I met an old couple who kept talking about how new technology provides new pathways of reading to our new generation. They kept referring their old times when there were no computers and internet, no iPad or Fire tablets but there was a reader’s club in every school and even in offices etc. Somehow their conversation interests me, and I invited myself in. It was nice to see the transition from the old to a new generation and how we all get connected on a certain topic. They share how they both met in a library, and their common urge of reading made a strong knot between them, which is still tied for fifty years. After a healthy discussion, we all walk outside the shop, and they left with a friendly and cheerful look on their face. The impression was likewise for me as well. However, I went back to the shop, and I start thinking about what makes them complain about the present? Why do they feel so nostalgic about their past? Why did they feel nostalgia? Continue reading “Why Do We Feel Nostalgia? The Longing for The Memorable time or An Unpleasant Memory from the Past”

When You should Share Your Secrets? and Why

When You Should Share Your Secrets? and Why
By Ahmad Amirali

Have you ever wondered why sometimes you want an urge to share your griefs, sorrows and the deepest dark thoughts with another human being? Whether students or teachers like me, we all share our secrets to a person we assume that our secret will not be revealed to anyone else. In that way, people have experienced the relief of getting something off their chest by sharing personal information. Relieving the stress of hiding painful, emotionally stressful information by sharing it with a trusted confidant can be intense, freeing, and liberating.  However, much depends on the subject matter of the secret you share, including your often justifiable unwillingness to share it. Continue reading “When You should Share Your Secrets? and Why”

Why Do We Fear Change? Reasons and Remedies

Why Do We Fear Change? Reasons and Remedies
By Ahmad Amirali

Today, one of my office colleagues asked me about my first year when I started my teaching career. I told her that it was pretty remarkable because I was passionate and confused about this new journey. She added that I’d changed a lot since then in terms of my thinking and how I engage with people. I exclaimed, ‘really, you think so?’ and she said yes, I thought it would be tough for you. I laugh, but deep down, I question why it is tough for anyone to adopt change? It is because we love the old part of ourselves, or we simply afraid to change?

One of the reasons could be is we fear change because we can’t anticipate the outcome. However, staying the same can be riskier than keeps on changing according to the circumstances. Although we reject uncertainty, we have the skills to change and evolve. Fear is an emotion that gets in the way we lose clarity of our potential. Most of the time, our fear of change is based on stories both real and the ones we say to ourselves. We narrate our lives as if they are out of our control. We feel as we are playing a part someone else wrote for us. It is significant to know that our life is not a book written by others. Create your storyline. Most of the times we cannot control the outcomes but it doesn’t mean we don’t have the potential to lead our lives as we want. Continue reading “Why Do We Fear Change? Reasons and Remedies”

Why Empathy? The Science Behind Understanding Other’s Feelings

Why Empathy? The Science Behind Understanding Other’s Feelings
BY Ahmad Amirali

Last month was a hectic and energetic month for me as I conducted educational camps in two of the major cities of Pakistan. Once again, I experienced that although people live in diverse cultural and linguistic environments, they still value certain things in their lives, which is common among us. Food and clothing are some of the things through which we can connect. Talking about connection, does it mean that feelings and emotions play an essential role in interacting with people? When students usually share something with me, they feel relaxed and secure. I experienced the same when I interacted with my students on these camps. It means even though I was utterly stranger to them moments ago, they still believe and trust me enough that they can share their issues, confusions and even fears with me. The term which I was searching for this phenomenon was ‘Empathy’.

Empathy is the ability to share and understand the emotions of others. It is a construct of multiple components, each of which is associated with its brain network. There are three ways of looking at empathy. First, there is affective empathy. This is the ability to share the emotions of others. For example, people who show a strong primitive reaction when watching a scary movie fall in the practical empathy stage. They feel scared or feel others’ pain firmly within themselves when seeing others scared or in pain. Another type is cognitive empathy. It is the ability to understand the emotions of others. Continue reading “Why Empathy? The Science Behind Understanding Other’s Feelings”

What Makes You, You? The Puzzle of Personality Traits

What Makes You, You? The Puzzle of Personality Traits

Have you ever wondered how you develop the personality which is an integral part of your identity? What inspires you to be who you are right now? Maybe you traditionally answered, I am like my dad or mom, I encouraged by my teacher or a celebrity’s struggle and life story motivated my personality trait. Psychologists like to talk about our traits or defined characteristics that make us who we are. But psychologists like Brian Little, a Cambridge professor and personality analyst, is more interested in moments when we transcend those traits — sometimes because our culture demands it of us, and sometimes because we demand it of ourselves. Continue reading “What Makes You, You? The Puzzle of Personality Traits”