Author: Dr. Ajit Varwandkar

Did you ever wake up in the morning and realise that the situations in life are not all that comfortable? Did you say yes? You may realise that you had a tsunami of disturbing thoughts when you slept the previous night. Somehow, you managed to get sleep. But as soon as you woke up, the reality presented itself again. Your only wish was to hope that things would be the way you always hoped them to be one day. 

There are times when people and situations disappoint you and let you down. Disappointments and falling short of achievements are a part of life for everyone. The biggest and the most flamboyant leader on this earth will also have experienced his share of discontent, sorrows and failures. There is no individual who did not go through this cloud of worry and uncertainty.

There will always be a million challenges and changes to make in your life. The key differentiator for those who come out successfully of such down phases is their ability to think beyond. “Think beyond the current circumstances” is the fuel energising an individual to keep moving. It is up to you to either get stuck with the real-time situations or accept them and decide to think beyond the current reality. 

“Thinking beyond” is a powerful technique – it temporarily helps a person ignore the prevalent agonies. The emotional turmoil cools down when you stop thinking of the disturbing elements. As those irritating feelings subside, you come out of the haze of distress. 

Laddu Pinto was the victim of Covid induced unemployment. After 15 years of service, he lost his job and was forced by destiny to begin with a Start-Up. Unfortunately for him, the entrepreneurial journey was not a cakewalk. Especially for those with an inbuild employee mindset, the shift into the grey matter of a business owner takes time. When things went beyond Laddu’s fathomable level of comfort and confidence, he started experiencing anxiety and stress. Depression seeped in, directly impacting not just his workplace performance but also the happiness in his family life. 

Sad Laddu met me for therapeutic intervention. I understood his situation and shared the technique of “thinking beyond”. Initially, he was not ready to take this thought but eventually got convinced. He first asked, “Sir, how do I think beyond? I am extremely invested in these self-sabotaging thoughts. I think my mind software is hacked, and it has got corrupted with negative thoughts.”

I offered Laddu a few steps to think beyond. Here are those:

  1. Kill the fear 
  2. Believe in your bigness
  3. Invite Distractions
  4. Make next moves

Kill the fear: Think of the worst possible consequence in the given situation. Write down your worries on a sheet of paper. One by one, strike those out.

Believe in your bigness: You are larger than the circumstances – that is a fact. The only need is to start thinking big. Tell yourself that there are no problems in this universe which come without a solution. Start visualizing things as becoming better and better every moment. Keep your life focused on believing in yourself. Ruthlessly ignore the judgements and opinions of others.

Invite Distractions: Take a short break if possible. If you cannot get a few days to break from the workplace, take a break for a few hours. Watch a movie or meet an old friend. Visit a nearby hospital and serve some needy people on the streets. 

Make the next moves: This is the time to plan for life after the end of the current imbroglio. Design a step-wise plan. Think about what you will do as soon as the situations change. Whom will you meet? What are those essential next steps for you? Draft all those on a paper and think deeply about every word you may have scripted. 

These four steps will keep you moving in the right direction. Thinking beyond will not be easy, but it is always an excellent investment. Remember the times when you face struggles boldly, bring out the stronger you out of your own personality. 

Do contact me in case you have any career queries.

Dr. Ajit Varwandkar is the Director of He is a leading career counselor and can be contacted on 9826132972 or email him at

This column was originally published by the author in The Times of India