I am becoming emotionally weak

I’m a first year engineering student. I stay in a hostel. I had very good friends in intermediate who were quite supportive and accompanied me in every situation. Now my university is quite far from home and the previous intermediate college. It’s been three months since college has started; a new place and new environment with co-education. I waited patiently to make good friends. But I have only a few classmates to spend time with and they often get busy with their work. I’m becoming emotionally weak and to get over this, I try to keep myself busy but yet end up with the same feeling. I need to make myself stronger.

It seems like you are feeling lonely in your new hostel and college, and are missing your friends and family.

From what you say, I understand that your friends in Intermediate were girls, and you spent a lot of time doing things together. But, now you are in a coed professional college, where students do a lot of independent work and are focused on their academic, and later career goals. Three months is a short time; give yourself a few more months to adjust and feel fully settled in.

When you constantly think about what is not working, it can make you feel emotionally weak. Firstly, set yourself a routine for your studies and free time. In your free time, find out what you can do on your own – going for walks, exploring the campus or shopping areas, reading, and more.

Spend time discovering what your interests and strengths are. Your interests can help you to participate in campus activities and meet like-minded people, as well as to start up a conversation. Not having a steady group can provide an opportunity to know so many more people!

Take this time on your own as a learning opportunity which will help you become a strong, independent young woman!



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My parents are not happy about my career choice

I am a student of Std IX and I want to b a journalist. Even though my parents haven’t said ‘no’ to me, they do not seem happy about this career choice. They have great expectations about me becoming an engineer or a doctor. But I am passionate about becoming a journalist. Also they always doubt whether I have a boyfriend or they think I am up to something wrong. Because of this I am very stressed and depressed. I don’t know what to do.

You are really stressed about the fact that you are passionate about becoming a journalist, but that you don’t think your parents support your choice, and seem to expect something more from you.

A good way to begin is to list your talents and strengths and weaknesses. Will these be used when you become a journalist? For example, are you good at writing? Are you willing to travel and cover a story? List what you love about journalism and why you want to be a journalist. Also list down my disadvantages. If you are convinced that this is the career for you, invite your parents to a discussion. Ask them to share what they expect of you and why; hear them out. Then, share with them what makes you so passionate about journalism and try to convince them.

It must greatly distress you that your parents don’t seem to trust you with regard to having a boyfriend or ‘doing something wrong’. Reflect on and examine what it is that you are perhaps unconsciously doing to give them that impression. You are now in class IX; take charge of yourself and show them that you are responsible and trustworthy.


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I don't want to hurt his feelings

When I was in Std 7, a boy in my class proposed to me. A year went by and now I am in Std 8 and he says he still loves me. I don’t want to be in a relationship with him but I also don’t want to hurt his feelings as a classmate. I told my mother about this and she simply says to ignore him but I don’t want to do that although I try my best to do so.

You seem to be in a dilemma about hurting the feelings of your classmate. That is thoughtful of you. However, you need to take a firm stand and show him you are not interested – both for your sake and his. It is better that he does not have any false hopes. 

You could choose to explain this to him firmly but kindly. Help him to understand that you don’t dislike him as person, but that you don’t want to be in a relationship now. When doing so, use ‘I…’ language. For example, “I would like to focus on my studies and am not interested in a relationship. I do hope you understand.” This way, you are not rejecting him, but are starting your preference, which you have every right to do.


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I don't know why I try to avoid them

I’m a student of class 11. My interaction skill with boys, teachers or strangers is disguising; I don’t know why I try to avoid them. I love dancing and people say that I dance well but when it comes to dancing before people I can’t, my legs start to shake. I have the same problem when speaking or singing in public. I compare myself with my friends; how they score better than me even after friends; how they score better than me even after not paying attention in class and even bunking classes. I know that I’m the only one who can make myself better but I don’t know how to do it. I’m never motivated enough to change myself.

It sounds like you feel very tongue-tied and shy and experience stage fright in front of people. It looks like you don’t value yourself or believe in yourself. Since you know that you are the only one who can make yourself better, you’re off to a good start!

How about a dose of self-appreciation each morning? Look into the mirror and appreciate one thing about yourself, however small. Write it down too. By the end of two weeks, you will realize that you are unique and that it is pointless to compare yourself with someone else!

Change happens with small steps and regular practice. You could perhaps start by rehearsing a dance or a speech in front of a mirror. Then video-record yourself or perform in front of a trusted friend and ask for feedback. Then try it in front of a small group. Finally, take the risk of joining a dance or an elocution competition in your school/college.

As for your personal interaction skills, making a conversation is about starting with small talk – the weather, an event, and so on, and then asking getting others to talk – so master the art of asking open-ended questions. You could pick up a book on conversation skills such as How To Talk to Anyone by Leil Lowndes and practice in the same manner as your dance/speech.

Change is a choice that you make each moment. So, make each experience one to learn from and grow, so that you like life fully!


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