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Rise above the storm

Kimberly Dias

Hi Kimberly, 

I used to study everyday and yet I did not do well in my preliminary exams. My family is very upset with my marks and I feel like I have lost all my confidence. I don’t know how to get myself to focus again. I feel like it’s no use working hard as I really thought I would score well.



Dear Usha, 

Thank you for your email and for sharing your situation with me. I bet it felt horrible not to get what you set out to achieve. However, it is through our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light. The choice to give up after one failure is yours but you need to focus on the outcome rather than the obstacle. Do not use your poor performance as a distraction and obstacle.

Brian Tracy wrote, ‘There are no limits to what you can accomplish, except the limits you place on your own thinking.’ You need to keep pushing yourself because nobody else is going to do it for you.

Keep going and everything you need will come to you at the perfect time. Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations. If your current study plan didn’t work, make a new one.

Erase the past, reboot your mind and start again. Make a new timetable, set a new goal/target, say a little prayer and begin! When you find yourself feeling distracted or just unable to cope, use positive self-statements such as, ‘I am calm and confident’, ‘I can achieve anything I want to achieve’, ‘I can do this’ or ‘It’s ok, just be positive’.

Remember that success comes in cans and failures in can’t! Success doesn’t just come and find you, you have to go out and look for it. Maybe the effort you put in wasn’t enough and all you need to do now is continue to work harder. You can’t change the past, so focus on making a great future.

‘If you want to shine like the sun, first you have to burn like the sun’ – APJ Abdul Kalam

Stay positive, work hard and make it happen.

All the best.




Dear Kimberly, 

I am in love with a boy and we have been in a relationship for almost a month. He really cares about me and I care about him. My friends know about it and a friend of mine keeps telling me that I am not thinking about this properly and that he is not a good person for me. The problem is that he dropped out of college and said that he would be looking for a job. He doesn’t seem to be interested in finding one though. It sometimes worries me but then I think that it’s still early in the relationship and he will change. Should I be worried?



Dear Rachna, 

Thank you for writing in and discussing your predicament with me. I can well imagine the excitement you must be feeling at the start of this new chapter in your life. I am also very happy to read about your friend who shares a deep concern for your wellbeing and isn’t afraid to share how she feels even though you may not agree with her or like it – that’s true friendship. It is unfortunate that you already perceive a problem, however it is better now than later. Yes, people change – well at least sometimes they do… Most of the other times, it’s just the mask that falls off and we find that we never really knew who they were.

It seems like you’re already worried and it is a good sign that you are thinking rationally too in a relationship. Know your worth and never settle for anything less. Being single is better than being in a relationship with someone who fills your heart and mind with doubt. Never regret a day in your life- good days give you happiness and bad days give you experience. Listen to your heart and mind, you will know what to do.



‘For success, attitude is equally important as ability’ – Walter Scott

Success doesn’t come from what you do occasionally, it comes from what you do consistently. When people focus on problems, they will only have more problems. When the focus is shifted to possibilities, there will be a rise in opportunities. Rise above the storm and you will find sunshine.

Do keep writing in at


Until next time, remember to look ahead.


(The columnist is psychologist and counsellor, currently working as a school counsellor.)


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