I love playing video games! The neat thing about them are the various the dashboards, control panels and indicators you get. How many lives I have l left, how much ‘nitro boost’ I have, total points accumulated, current level and ranking, what weapons are available in my arsenal, gold coins, and so on. You get the point!

In combat games, there is also an ‘energy meter’ or a ‘life line’. This is a kind of a horizontal bar, made of up smaller slices that light up to indicate the amount of ‘life’ left in me. When all the slices are lit up, my energy is at full, as with every blow I take from the opponent, I lose energy or ‘life force'. If I take too many blows, I may go into the red zone. The only way to recover may to be pick up some ‘elixir’ or pot of gold coins by completing some challenges. If I am not able to do that in time, and if I continue to take hits, eventually I will die.

Sounds familiar?

The other day my wife looked at me and said in a terse voice, ‘why don’t you put off your mobile phone and be 100% with sometime’. She was 100% right. But I could feel the beginnings of a internal upheaval inside me. I did’t enjoy her tone.

One of my students, who has been a part of Dancing with Tigers for a while now, and hence understands the importance of punctuality, waltzed in a few minutes late. There wasn’t a sign of remorse on her face. In fact she was ready with an excuse. I felt myself losing my patience, albeit ever so slightly.

My dad’s tone and volume changed, and I could sense the temperature rising.

I got a brilliant opportunity. It was totally outside my comfort zones. There were chances of failure. But there were huge chances of tremendous success. Should I or shouldn’t I? The confusion and indecision were hacking away at my peace of mind.

I trusted him completed and knew he would always be there to stand up for me. But that day, he ignored my pleas. He looked at me coldly. No warmth. In fact all the credit was given to my college. It was like a tsunami had hit me from within.

Life challenges me. Life tests me. Things will NOT go my way every now and then. These are the moments that drain my ‘emotional reservoir’. They slash away at my ‘energy meter’. My 'life line’ sometimes drops down to the red zone.

But I am smart. I keep my reservoir topped up. I do enough of all those thing that fill up my reservoir.

I wake up early. I exercise. I meditate. I keep my commitments. I say yes challenges. I say no to distractions. I spend quality time with love ones. I express my feelings. I take responsibilities. I nurture and guide a few.

All these things add to my ‘emotional reservoir’. When the level of my reservoir is high, the challenges of life don’t throw my off balance. I stay cool even in the face of adversity. I think. I seek help. I act. I solve. I win.

Would love to know what helps you FILL UP your emotional reservoir?