It’s all about you!

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Life is unpredictable. You might be leading a charmed life at the moment but you never know when life starts throwing curveballs your way. And when that happens, how you respond back is what defines you. It is not the life, but it is YOU!

First and foremost, you must know the difference between RESPONSE and REACTION. Where ‘reaction’ on one hand, is the emotional trigger that automatically occurs once you face a situation, the ‘response’ is a much sorted out, thoughtful action which is totally in your control. Imagine a situation, where a high intensity earthquake hits an area and there is a lot of damage to houses, properties and lives of people. Do you think every single person affected by that calamity, is going to react in a same way? Definitely not! Even if you pick one family from that scene, do you feel every member of that one family is going to be affected the same way and to the same extent, keeping in mind they all shared the same amount of loss? Again, NO! So, it is always advisable to respond and not react! Your emotions should be under your control and not with the outside world. The situation shouldn’t trigger your action/reaction, YOU should!

Yes, there are highs and lows in everyone’s life. There are good memories and there are bad moments too. But that is the beauty of LIFE! How do you expect to enjoy the accomplishments, if you have never experienced how failures taste? How do you value happiness and contentment, if you have never went through sorrowful times? These ups and downs are what make our life valuable and worth living.

There can be unexpected blows, in your business, in your relationships and in any aspect of your life. But it is YOU who has to take charge of yourself, pull yourself together, stand up once again and be ready to face life one more time. You just cannot afford to sit and mourn over your loss for the rest of your life. Don’t let a single incident, or a situation or even a single person dictate how you are going to live. This is your life, your journey! Learn from everything and everyone that comes your way, no matter how good or bad. Keep garnering different experiences of your life and keep moving!

Life can be a roller coaster ride but so it is for everyone else on this planet too. So why complain? Why compare? Why blame it on destiny, why pity your circumstances? Don’t live a life passively, only to look behind before dying, and repenting on your attitude. Take responsibility of where you are, and then decide how you can reach where you want to be. Because, it’s not your life that is stopping you, it’s YOU!

 

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5 daily rituals for success

robin sharma

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This blog is inspired by Robin Sharma who is a renowned author and one of the world’s top leadership experts. Let’s look into what daily habits or rituals one must inculcate in his life to become successful.

  1. Rising Early everydayNow, I am sure this didn’t come as a surprise to you as we all are well aware of the benefits of rising early in the morning. According to Robin, 5 am is the best time to wake up to start a great day. However, for all the late risers, this might be a little overwhelming. No worries, you can start by waking up an hour early than your usual time and gradually take it close to 5 am in few weeks. Waking up early literally elongates your day and you feel like you have enough time for everything. Make sure the first things you do after waking up in the morning be more of productive and creative nature and do them cheerfully as your morning is going to define how the rest of the day will unfold.
  2. Scheduling and time blockingPlanning your day ahead of time, not only saves your time and energy, it also keeps you motivated to work and get those things on your to-do list done asap. You can schedule and do strategic time blocking for every task you want to accomplish. This can be done on daily basis like a night before, or can be done weekly too, for instance, every Sunday. This way, you save yourself from being undecisive each day. You just grab your checklist, work on things one by one, keep them ticking off from the list as and when they are done. Don’t worry, if not all the tasks have been done. At least, you would do much more than when there is no schedule and no pre-planning done.
  3. Over delivery: This ritual took me some time to understand. But now I agree, that if one wants to succeed in his field, he must strive for excellence and perfection, he must grow better than his competition, he must over deliver to his customers. Only then, he will become the master of his game and be successful in his profession. Focus on what your customers want, work on how you can be of value to others, do your service passionately and your work will surely shine and attract more people to you. This reminds me of a quote: “Always do your best, no matter the size of your audience!”
  4.  Learn everydayThere should not be any age bar on learning. Each one of us should keep learning till our end years. Learn like a student. Take your time each day to learn something new, to hone your skills and that is the only way, you can grow. Robin emphasizes on ’60 minute student ritual’ that everyone who wants to step up their game, must spend at least 60 minutes each day on learning. This can be achieved through reading books, joining classes, or learning online. Each little effort in this regard is going to count in the long run!
  5. Private reflection : Last but not the least, the ritual of private reflection is a must ingredient for your ‘success recipe’. Taking out time for yourself, sitting in silence and reflecting on your current life, and your visions for future is so important for each one of us who wants to grow and evolve in life. This ritual connects you to your inner self and polishes it to make you a better version of yourself. So, make sure to give yourself the much needed ‘reflection’ time. Your soul needs it everyday!

So, these are the rituals we all can start working on to get the best of our life, to do the best things, not just for ourselves but for the world as a whole!

The most powerful species on earth!

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A few days back, my 8 year old son asked me about the most powerful creature on earth and when I replied ‘human beings’, he disagreed and starting pouring his newly acquired knowledge about ‘Dung beetle’ from the recent episodes of Wild Kratts he watched. He said that this Beetle can pull more than 1000 times its own weight. But as per my knowledge, beetles are one of the smallest creatures on our planet. So, sure enough, I wasn’t convinced. This disappointed him badly.

Later that day, while serving him dinner and catching up with my running younger son  for every bite to feed him, I suddenly realized the power of a mother. That day, I slept with the thoughts of how a mother totally forgets her own health, well-being, happiness and her own dreams the day she becomes a mom and then, her life totally revolves around her kids. Right from the moment she wakes up, all the way up to the time she hits the hay at night and even at midnights, when she gets up to see if the baby is snuggled in the blanket or not, she is constantly on duty to nurture these tiny human beings and look after their every little and big needs. Not to mention, when the child is ill, the mother forgets about her own sleep and makes sure her little one is resting well, feeding him medicines on time, cooking a number of different things, just to make him eat at least something. She doesn’t feel like taking a bite when she knows her child has not eaten anything. What a species you have created Lord!

I have also seen some instances of how a mother’s prayer for her child is always answered. When a child is suffering from an ailment, no matter how chronic it may be, a mother’s prayer has so much power at that time. She has the ability to fight with God, and she is ready to do whatever it takes to recover her baby from the illness. She is the only one who will every say, “May God take my life to elongate yours!” What a selfless and unconditional love. Unconditional, because she is not doing any of this for her own interests, she doesn’t expect anything in return. All she wants is her child to smile always and be blessed.

Some new moms choose to completely abandon their flourishing careers to stay with their baby full time. A mother isn’t paid for her duties as a mom, she has no sick leaves or holidays. She is on her toes 24/7, always ready to care for and look after them, irrespective of how her own health is. Her own pains take a backseat when she is with her children. She might not even get any acknowledgement of all this from anyone, not even her children when they grow up. But this doesn’t deter her spirit of loving her little ones. Now isn’t that so powerful? What else on this planet can have more power than a mother.

The next day, I told my son that he is right, any creature that can carry so much more than their weight  is certainly the most powerful. He was very happy to see his mom finally agreeing to what he claimed yesterday. I smiled and continued in my mind “and mothers carry the heaviest weights of pains, expectations, fears, unfulfilled dreams and so much more but with a smile on their beautiful faces”.

 

And here comes the new year…

I just got a forwarded message on WhatsApp saying

“Don’t be too excited about this new year stuff. Only the calendar has changed. The spouse, job and targets remain the same.”

Although it seems funny at once, but it has a deep meaning hidden beneath the humor. Every year, with the midnight stroke on New year eve, the whole world goes crazy with celebrations, fireworks, parties and so much more. Everyone makes new year resolutions and makes promises to themselves for changing their habits, and working harder on their dreams but all this enthusiasm and determination wears down by the end of first two weeks. So, in short, nothing changes except for the calendar year.

However, there is one more thing that we can change to actually beautify the coming year and all the years to follow,  and that is – ATTITUDE. Our attitude towards life and towards everything around us, is what determines the quality of our life. Shifting our focus from negativities around us to the little positive elements hidden inside them, can make a huge difference. A person with positive attitude views every problem as an opportunity, he has the power to turn every adversity to prosperity. Even if you cannot find any positivity in a situation, at least you can sit down and ask yourself if there is anything you can do to change the situation. If yes, then stop cribbing and starting doing. If no, then even if you cry over it endlessly, nothing is going to change. Sometimes, we just need to let go. And sometimes, we just need to give it time, because time heals almost everything.

Now, going back to the forwarded message, New year won’t change your job, or your spouse or your in-laws. But if this year, you change your attitude towards them and overall towards life, you might just witness a magical twist in your relationships, in your profession and in every aspect of your life. Just be a little kinder, a little compassionate, more tolerant and a little more positive and you will have a blessed and actually happy new year!

 

The two wolves!

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Let me begin with a short story which you might have already read or heard. A grandfather tells his grandson “We all have two wolves inside us battling with each other. One wolf is angry, jealous, full of hatred and corrupt. The other one is joyous, loving, caring, selfless and compassionate. ” The grandson asks, “So which wolf wins the battle?”. “The one you feed!”, replies the grandfather.

Isn’t it so true? We all have both the good and bad wolves inside us. There are times when even the kindest person would have got angry, and even a worst of worst man also can be loving and kind. There is good and bad in each one of us. Sometimes, we go out of our way to help someone in need and at other times, we are so rude and angry with our own family members. Now, the question is – if we have the angel and devil both inside us, which one of our behavior supersedes the other? The answer is pretty simple, the one we pay more attention to!

Our mind is constantly getting fed with information from outside world. Think of it like a black box – you feed some input and you get some output. Let us not focus on what processes inside the black box. But what is 100 percent true is that the output is directly proportional to input. In this media dominating world, no doubt, we are constantly being fed with all the negative news and information about the world. So, what can we expect from the quality of our thoughts, aren’t they bound to be negative and full of fear and anger? Now, if we invest our time in reading motivational books and articles or listening to such videos/podcasts, isn’t is going to impact our thoughts in a positive way. It sure will!

Both the wolves are hungry, both need to be fed. It is totally our choice whom we want to feed more and give life to. And that is truly going to shape our life in turn!

The ‘Why’ power

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“Where there is a will, there is a way”

Haven’t we all heard this phrase while growing up? I have read and listened to so many stories emphasizing on how ‘will power’ can lead you to success. And I agree that it is a ‘must’ ingredient for any success recipe. However, it is much recent that I heard about the concept of ‘WHY’ power and it undoubtedly, blew my mind away!

Will power means the determination to do something. Whenever we envision a goal, it is our ‘will power’ that gets us started. But, what takes us till the end of accomplishment of that goal is the ‘why’ power. ‘Why’ is what keeps you going through the journey. So it certainly is important to understand what exactly it is!

Let us take an example of two persons A and B who want to quit smoking. Both know it is not good for their health. But B has another reason to stop smoking. He has a baby at home who is at risk of asthma because of passive smoking. He knows if he doesn’t stop, he might endanger his own child’s life. So, whom do you think is actually going to quit smoking permanently. Whose WHY is stronger than the other? B, correct?

Most of the people know WHAT they want to do in life and it is quite easy to figure out HOW they can do it but if they do not know WHY they are doing it, they are bound to fail sooner or later. HOWs are just the steps but WHY is the purpose. It is only if one has a strong enough WHY, will they do their best and be the number one in their field. One must know his purpose, only then can he be life time committed to what he is doing.

There are two most important days in everyone’s life – one, the day they were born and the second, the day they know WHY!

 

The two enemies of happiness

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Who in this world doesn’t want happiness? All our life, we try to chase happiness. We try to look for it in our relationships, qualifications, possessions etc. and despite of having all these things, our search for happiness doesn’t seem to cease. Today, we are going to look into two biggest enemies of happiness and trust me, if you work on these two culprits, happiness will love to stay with you 🙂

  1. Expectations:- We have expectations from our spouses, our bosses, our in laws, our children, our neighbors, and almost everybody around us. We even expect the traffic on roads to be our way, we expect to get green lights on the way to office, we want the weather to be congenial to our needs. Isn’t it so impractical to expect the world to dance to our tunes. So, it is pretty obvious that we are bound to get upset whenever and wherever we set our expectations from others. Now, I know, its not easy ‘not to expect’ anything from anyone. But once we understand the relationship between expectations and setbacks from them, we can at least try to lower them, and just let the things and people be the way they are. Try ‘Accepting’ instead of ‘Expecting’.
  2.  Comparisons:- Most of us are unhappy because we think we have lower incomes, worse relationships, smaller cars, more problems COMPARED to our peers. Specially in this age of social media, it is too hard to not get influenced by the posts and pictures of your friends and acquaintances who seem to have all the happiness of the world. But remember, the only place where there is no tension and no problem at all is in the graves.  And I am sure you don’t want to be there, just to experience a problem free life (or death?)! So, you need to understand everybody has a different life, different capabilities and different journeys. And everybody is fighting a battle that you know nothing about. So, there is no point in comparing our lives to others. We all are blessed in some ways, and we all have our share of problems. So, enjoy your blessings happily and face your problems bravely.

I hope now you know which two culprits in your life are trying to kill happiness. You better stop reading and go arrest those demons before they attack your ‘happiness’ again! Good luck!