How to deal with stress the Mahi-way

So I watched MS Dhoni: The untold story and I was mind blown by the amount of drama that has happened in Dhoni’s life — from missing his opportunity to play in the Duleep trophy because the Bihar Cricket Association (BCA) had not forwarded the selection letter to the unfortunate dead of his girlfriend to the hostile reaction of Indian fans after India’s decimal performance in the 2007 World cup, Dhoni’s life has all the masala to be made into a Bollywood movie without even a bit of exaggeration.

Coming to think of it, Dhoni’s life is no different from ours. We all do run into pretty distressing and unfair events in our own professional and personal life. But what makes him special is the way he deals with stress.

Most times in life, it is not always about how good a talent you are. It is also about how well you can keep doing the things you are good at even when you are under immense stress due to external forces. Dhoni’s life epitomizes just that.

So the question is how do you live a stress-free life by thinking like MS Dhoni?

1.Respond. Don’t react.

Easier said than done. When was the last time you saw Dhoni losing his calm on the field just because an opponent player is playing well? He has a strong sense of the things that are under his control and the things that aren’t. So you rarely see his stressing over the things he can’t control.

Even when his plans aren’t working, he calmly goes about the change in strategy without blaming others for the situation. Because deep within, he knows that panicking just doesn’t change anything.

2. Remain detached, yet attached.

Even without analyzing him much, you can easily say that he is a person with varied interest. A lot of people have spoken about how little he speaks of cricket once he is outside of the cricket field. You even get a feeling that cricket is not his first love with all the bikes, the armed forces fascination, and his love affair with football. But then come game day, he proves you wrong- his eyes exude the composure of an assassin and his bat swing is as brutal as a butcher in action.

For the folks that watched the movie, there is a beautiful scene in the movie where MS tries to get one of his bike’s engine roaring while simultaneously thinking of the rash shots that got him out. This detached yet attached mindset gives him the liberty to remain unaffected in personal life despite having a bad game.

He is like a machine that can switch between different modes when required. Cricketer being one of the modes.

Now how many of us carry the baggage of a bad day at work home? Don’t we all require a detachment switch?

3. Negative visualization

Every time you watch Dhoni win/lose a match, you get a feeling that he is a person who doesn’t care about results much. And yet his is one of the most successful Indian captains.

Every single time you think of the worst that can happen to you in a particular situation, you get a sense of calmness. The negative visualization is not to be confused with pessimism. This trick informs your mind the worst that could happen if you lose so that you focus on the task in-hand without thinking much of the results.

These are the few tricks/methods to lead a stress-free life like MS Dhoni. Remember, you can work stress-free by

  • Responding instead of reacting,
  • Remaining detached yet attached,
  • Visualizing the worst that could happen out of any situation.


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