Why Do We Need A Friend to Survive in This World of Chaos?

Why Do We Need A Friend to Survive in This World of Chaos?
By Ahmad Amirali

Almost every year, during one on one sessions with my students, they share their deepest fears, confusions, and stress motivators. Majority of their concerns that puzzled their world are related to their social life – friendships. The question that every student, who suffered from traumatic social experience, ask ‘Sir, why someone hurt us who know us better than anyone?’ I simply listen to their concerns and let them answer their own questions – it’s one of my strategy where students find solutions to their problem by themselves. However, the question that puzzled me after hearing their concerns, ‘Why do we need a friend to survive in this world of chaos?

When I was in school, I fascinated one of the subjects so much – Social Studies, where we study human evolution and development. There I learn the definition of society that mentioned an important aspect of humans. Human beings are social animals who need other humans to survive and live happily in his world. Read More …

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 inspire 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 the 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. Read More …

Why Should We Celebrate Our Failures?

Why Should We Celebrate Our Failures?

Last year was the biggest and complicated year of my life in terms of career, growth, home and health. I learned that life is like a ‘trade cycle’, the moment you reach the peak of your aims and we start feeling that now everything is achieved, that moment become our first step towards our recession. Does it mean that we should not celebrate or feel enthusiast for our success? Or does it mean that we should not mourn over our failures and mistakes? I believe all of us experience our ups and downs throughout our lives. However, I am pretty much sure that almost all of us remember the time when we experienced loses, mistakes, difficulties and failure more clearly than the time when we celebrated our success. Why our mind keeps a clear record of our faults rather than success? Because learnings always come from failures. I still remember the quote from the cartoon ‘Lion King’ ‘the past can hurt, but the way I see it, you can either run from it or learn from it – Rafiki’. Read More …

Stage Fright: Why Do We Fear Public Speaking

Stage Fright: Why Do We Fear Public Speaking
By Ahmad Amirali

Once my teacher told me, when I was in school, to go in front of the class and describe what good and bad conductors of electricity are. As the subject of science was one of my favourite subjects, I gathered all my strength and went to the podium which was placed in the middle of our lecture room. My hands were full of sweat, heart tumbling inside-out, stomach knots and having a strong urge to cry out loud. I realised that speaking randomly to people is much different than speaking in front of the same people. Why would I afraid of talking in front of people whom I met and talked every day? Read More …

The Art of Metaphors and Similes

The Art of Metaphors and Similes

We humans often use examples to convey our thoughts to other people. Examples help us better articulate our thoughts and make sense to others and the majority of times we use metaphoric language in our conversations. Why we use metaphors and how it helps us and others to understand any idea or thought better.

Jane Hirshfield explains how do metaphors help us better understand the world? And, what makes a good metaphor? She explores these questions with writers like Langston Hughes and Carl Sandburg, who have mastered the art of bringing a scene or emotion to life. Read More …

Why Do We Need to Teach Our Girls to Be Brave, Not Perfect?

Why Do We Need to Teach Our Girls to Be Brave, Not Perfect?
By Ahmad Amirali

Today, one of my previous students, who is now in her under graduation, approach and asked me a question that made me write that article. She said, she wants to complete her graduate studies and wants to apply for Fulbright scholarship. However, she was afraid that she might not make it through the last level because mostly everybody, from her friend circle to her relative, opposing her decision. Well, as a teacher and her well-wisher I said what I supposed to said that always listen to your heart and mind instead of people who hardly know who you are. Success and failure are depending on how much effort you put forward to achieve your goal. However, the question is, what makes her afraid of what she wants to achieve in her life? but before asking that question, one should ask, why she is afraid of whatever choices she wants to make herself for her future development? Read More …

Does Freedom of Choice really Exist?

Does Freedom of Choice really Exist?
By Ahmad Amirali

Since I was a child, I always wondered why there is no straight answer to every question. Why we always have choices in our lives? Why do we need to make decisions for what we want? Sometimes, in our lives, we ask such questions because we expect that there should be someone who makes our decisions for us. However, one may ask, is freedom of choice make us more dependent rather than independent. Does freedom of choice really exist?

Psychologist Barry Schwartz aims a central tenet of western societies: freedom of choice. In Schwartz’s estimation, the choice has made us not freer but more paralysed, not happier but more dissatisfied. He believes that this ‘paradox of choice’ produces paralysis rather than liberation. Most of the time students ask me ‘sir, what do you think, what career should I choose after graduating school? Is science good for me because I am good at maths and stuff or I rather chose fine arts because I love drama?’ With so many options to choose from, students find it very difficult to choose at all.

Let review the Ted talk of Barry about the paradox of choice and find out is freedom of choice really exist? Read More …

Why Kids Need a Champion in Their Lives?

Why Kids Need an Inspiration in Their Lives?
Ahmad Amirali

There were and are several instances during my teaching where students express their feelings, good or bad, about my personality, the way I talk, the clothes I wear, even the bracelets which I habitually wear in school, the way I smile, crack jokes etc. Expressive student behaviour shows how much students aware of you, inspire you or hate you. In my case, not always students inspire me, some compete with me, struggle to like me or just don’t even bother whatever I said to them. Overall, students first human encounter they ever have outside their family are you guys – Teachers. We, teachers, have we ever wondered what the value of human connection in our profession is? Read More …

Sleep and Teenagers: Why Teens Need More Sleep Than Adults

Sleep and Teenagers: Why Teens Need More Sleep Than Adults

As children grow and move to teenage level, they become at the significant stage of their growth and development. Therefore, at this stage, they need more sleep than adults. The average teen needs about eight to nine hours of sleep each night to feel attentive and refreshed. Many factors keep teens from getting enough sleep and one of the reasons is – early schooling. Read More …

Why Do Students Cheat in Exams? | The Concept of Predictable Irrationality

Why We Cheat? | The Concept of Predictable Irrationality
By Ahmad Amirali

Yesterday one of my students, who is in now in high school, came to me, sharing the good news about his achievement in a school exam. As conversation proceeds, he asked me ‘sir why do we cheat? What difference does it make if a person succeeded by cheating others and a person who did not cheat at all? Well, this question is not new to me as the pupils usually ask when they caught up doing cheating in exams or observe any cheating in the classroom. However, this question reminds me of a year old TEDx video of Dan Ariely, who shared his hospital experience when he severely burnt and talked about the concept of ‘Predictable Irrationality’. Read More …