Category: affirmations

Expectations are a gift not a burden

Expectations are a gift not a burden

It takes a really different perspective, to understand and appreciate, how an expectation becomes a gift and that it is not a burden. Remember the festival times and birthdays, when each of us had some sort of expectations regarding the gifts, we believed we would get. Perhaps in some cases, the expectations still persists, except that the giver of the gift has changed, possibly to that of a spouse, grownup children, a new friend, the in laws etc. On the other hand, do you as an individual, get bogged down by the challenge of fulfilling expectations? It could be as simple as what gift or give someone or it could be more complex as, how do I fulfill the other person’s expectations of me when I myself am not motivated or confident of giving something appropriate?

To understand and appreciate the perspective of expectation being a gift, one needs to appreciate that expectations are always put only on those we have trust in; have faith in; people who we are sure love us a lot and believe in doing the best for us. Expectations arise because we place out trust in someone and that trust is earned because they have given ample evidence of their nature and love for us. It is true that many a time we have been disappointed when our expectations did not match up to what we had in mind. Other times, the expectations remained unfulfilled for a variety of reasons but while the pain of that moment may still be a little sore, we have still largely kept up our expectations in them again. Our expectations are proof of our understanding, appreciation, trust and value we place in the relationship.

If you are someone burdened with the onus of fulfilling expectations, look at those expectations as a testimony to other people looking up to you. This kind of trust is earned over time and reinforces the reality that you have are a person who people look up to, trust whole heartedly and believe. They have expectations from you because in their experience, what you offer in word, deed and gifts are valuable, chosen with care and apt. You have over time given others reason to believe in you. You have listened to them, you have kept them in your thoughts, you have the courage of conviction to give a feedback and you value the relationship with them.

Look at yourself as the Santa Claus that brings good cheer in all ways, at all times to many a people and thereby you have earned trust, respect and the challenge of fulfilling myriad expectations however big or small.

Try these:         

  • Ask yourself if there are people whose email forwards or watts app forwards are looked forward to by you? Can you identify the reasons for it? Is it because they forward you selective, meaningful, apt stuff that you can identify with?
  • Next challenge is for you to be as discreet, selective and discerning in your communications as the person whose communication you value.
  • Who disappointed you the most because he/ she/ they never came even close to fulfilling your expectations from them?  Have you also let down others in a similar way, when they had high expectations from you? What is common to both situations?
  • What was the most wonderful gift you ever received? Ask yourself why the value of that gift is priceless for you?
  • What is the best gift that you have gifted to anyone? What makes you think it is an excellent gift?
  • Is there any gift or surprise that you received that was completely unexpected and thrilling?
  • What was the gift you disliked or disapproved of and rankles you even today? Can you identify the reasons for this feeling of dislike?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

4 seeds to plant within you

4 seeds to plant within you

In your personal garden of life, one would need to have among other things, a bunch of lovely attributes to help one live a purposeful and happy life. The suggestions for you to nurture in your life garden, are these four.

Faith – It is defined as confidence or trust in a person or thing or a belief not based on proof On a personal level, it is trust in your ability to cope with any challenge. Faith is not simply blind trust, but a belief born out of a conviction, because you can see it take shape in your life. In its simplest form, it is your mental visualization of a matrix of your abilities and efforts being maximized to the full to deliver a certain vision /goal you have for yourself. E.g. improving your academic scores or if you are an athlete, improving upon your existing record.  So visualize in detail what you want to achieve and begin with the full conviction that you will achieve it once you begin. All start up ideas that get going are nothing but Faith being leveraged.

Hope – It is defined as an optimistic attitude of mind based on an expectation or desire.  Hope is an optimistic attitude. Each day may not pan out the way you hope it will. However, even if there are blips and confidence shakers, if you cling on to hope you tend to see the brighter side of things. Hope is what helps you overcome challenges, gives you the fortitude to cope with calamities and the little voice that keeps encouraging you to keep going no matter what the obstacles.  While faith helps you take the first step, hope is what keeps you going.

Courage – The daring and willingness to take risks. These are not just calculated risks but many a time it is doing what needs to be done without thinking about the consequences. Courage gives impetus and direction to one’s moral compass. Courage is ideally exemplified in standing up for ones rights, to speak up for the truth, to side with the those in distress and to live a principled life. It takes great courage to stand up against a majority view point, to challenge the established and the establishment and much more courage is required to stand up against brutal consequences.

Love – Is the sentiment of affection and feelings that manifests in unconditional acceptance of others. It is difficult to love those who are family but deviants, friends but with views very different to your own, those who have heaped scorn and misery but deserve to be forgiven. Nurturing love requires a large heart, an even larger capacity to forgive and an ocean of temperance and understanding.

By planting the seeds of faith, hope, courage and love early and nurturing it with care, what we are growing within us, is a garden of peace, tranquility and happiness that no money can buy, no person can gift us nor can anyone rob us of.

Try these: 

  • What is the one thing you always wanted to do but did not have adequate courage to attempt it? Is it possible for you to muster enough hope and have the faith in yourself to make a good attempt now?
  • What are the three favorite activities that you love to indulge in? Why do you love doing it? What happens when you get bored or lose fascination for any of those activities?
  • What is the one social problem that you feel very strongly about? Have you studied anything seriously about it and identified some solutions to overcoming it? Make an attempt to write about it in the newspaper. Also attempt to write an article and get it published.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

4 free gifts

4 free gifts

We have four free gifts that we are blissfully unaware of, barely pay attention to and invariably miss out on using them, to enrich our life. Let us appreciate these four free gifts so that we can make full use of these free and powerful boons.

The richest wealth is Wisdom – Knowledge is not wisdom. Prudent use of knowledge is wisdom. Prudent use of knowledge is optimum when we act intelligently, leverage our creativity, focus on results, have a holistic understanding of our mission and above all utilize the knowledge for constructive purposes. Wisdom comes not just from books and experiences but from observation, reasoning, listening and experimentation. Keep all your senses open to receive inputs from all sources and before long you would be imbibing the best learning that you can convert into wisdom.

The strongest weapon is Patience – Waiting is not patience.  Patience is waiting with a good attitude. The practice for this comes in varying shades. From waiting for 9 months from conception to have a new born or sowing the seeds and waiting for the crops to grow for harvesting. In city life, the lessons of patience can be learned from waiting in long lines, waiting for a doctor’s appointment or getting stuck in a traffic jam.  They are all irritable moments of life but unavoidable. Patience starts when you embrace the waiting with rationale, a positive attitude and maintain equanimity.

The best security is Faith – Faith is not mere optimism but the conviction that things will happen the way you want it. Faith is trust in one’s beliefs. Faith ensures that doubts have no place in jeopardizing set plans. Even if the plans go awry, faith ensures that one focuses attentively, persists diligently and believes incessantly. Faith provides the impetus to dream big, dare outlandishly and succeed spectacularly.

The greatest tonic is Laughter– Laughter they say is the elixir of life. If you can learn to laugh no matter what the situation, it is a clear indicator that you have the wisdom, the patience and the faith to tackle any obstacle that keeps you away from your dreams Laughter is most common denominator that connects people without any bias or distinction. Most importantly, laughter is a matter of perspective; see it in the right light and the resultant joy is infectious. . Laughter uplifts the spirit, lightens the mood, rejuvenates the soul and energizes the physical self.

Now that we are conscious of these gifts bestowed on each of us, our mission must be to utilize them, to lead a more fulfilling life.

Try these:         

  • Over the course of the next week look up as many cartoons as you can in newspapers, comic strips, cartoon blogs etc. Notice how it impacts your mood and your productivity in a positive way.
  • Set yourself a target to achieve by a certain time frame. The target must be challenging enough to give you a sense of real achievement. It could be fund raising, accomplishing a long cherished dream, doing something that you are really scared off, finishing a long pending but boring important task etc.
  • List out three things or persons or situations where you tend to lose your patience and react negatively. Challenge yourself not to succumb to such a reaction when faced with the person or situation.
  • Every evening jot down one new learning from the events of your day.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Self motivation – the key to success

Self motivation – the key to success

Motivation, like air, is something invisible yet omnipresent. Unlike air which we breathe automatically as long as one is alive, one has to strive to identify and embrace motivation. While there could be various types of external stimulus that could pave the way for motivation, genuine motivation comes from within. Intrinsic motivation, as it is known, is intense, long lasting and fuels commitment. Unfortunately, intrinsic motivation is extremely hard to identify. On the flip side, if one were to identify one’s intrinsic motivation, life would be much more enjoyable, work more passionately and success would follow seamlessly. The trick to a great life is finding that motivation, which spurs you to remain excited every moment of your life.

Here are some pointers to discovering / identifying your intrinsic motivation:

Look out for something that you like /appreciate: The moment you start liking and appreciating things, you will always see things in a positive, enjoyable, engaging light. Similarly, try to seek out the good in whatever you do. It is this wondrous approach to life, work and social requirements that gives you a natural ability to be charged up and excited all the time. E.g. Your job is not too taxing / your boss is tough but fair/ you have friendly colleagues / your family is most fun to be with / you have family routines that are unique etc.

Ask yourself What is unique/ exciting about this? At times, the drudgery, the routine, the boring aspects of one’s life and job gets us mentally bogged down. You will find it hard to be motivated. That is the time you will have to take a re-look at whatever you do and see if from a prism of optimism and possibilities. The small thrills of the job, the interesting outcomes despite the routine, the appreciation from others for doing your routine job well etc. are all triggers to remain self motivated. E.g. You are sought after by colleagues because you are able to organize fun events / You can make a routine circular about a picnic much more fun filled / you get to meet interesting people as part of your job / you get to learn / gain expertise in technical aspects of your job

Ask yourself ‘How will I make a unique contribution to this?’ Ask yourself if you can make your job and your life even more easy, exciting, different, fun filled etc. Initially it would be hard to see such possibilities but once you look for such possibilities, you will find that there are surprises awaiting discovery. E.g. How can I speed up the job/  Are there ways to have checks and balances to minimize errors in the job/ can I introduce automation or get a software developed to manage things better.

Ask yourself ‘ How can I add fun to this?’ Any job can be made fun provided you believe it can be fun. Even the most routine and boring tasks can be made exciting by a little creativity, a bit of daring and the willingness to believe in yourself. E.g. I have heard of a telephone operator who had a penchant for sketching draw up a sketch of frequent callers, who she never met, purely based on their voice. Her sketches, I am told a remarkable accuracy to the facial features of the subjects. Similarly, I was in a flight in which the boring pre departure in-flight announcement of wearing seat belts was made in the most hilarious manner by a flight attendant. Everyone paid attention, they were engaged and most importantly the message was delivered effectively.

Be grateful for the opportunities that you get. The art of being grateful makes us more tuned in to our inner self. We become aware of all the blessings we are endowed with. As a result we begin to value all we have with a greater sense of responsibility. This sense of responsibility automatically triggers motivation within us, because you now know that you have to keep doing what you go to do because it is a blessing denied to many. E.g. You get a promotion. Almost immediately you  realize that your commitment must be much more, your skill sets need to be finely honed and you are motivated to take on the challenge albeit even when it includes longer hours and even more challenges.

Try these:

  • What is your next target in your personal and professional life? Write it down and commit to it. Notice the motivation that spurts up once you write it down and commit to it.
  • Recall the most appreciative feedback you have received in your life. Does the recollection of these moments excite you and energize you?
  • What do you think motivates a lift man/ your house help / the delivery boy who delivers to your home/ the waiter who serves you? Do you remember any one of these people who you have interacted with? What was the special characteristics that she/ he displayed, that makes you recall the person?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

The power within us

The power within us

When we look around we have plenty to complain about. From population explosion, to climate change, water crisis, the need to control use of plastics, the way social media and mobile communication has overtaken our lives etc. What is unfortunate is not the manifold crisis surrounding us but our response to the crisis. While the vast majority sees it as perils of development, there is a larger population that sees it as a governmental problem to be solved by elected representatives. There are very few who take onus, that this is a problem that begins with each individual contributing to it. There are even fewer who believe that however small a contribution they make, every individual can contribute significantly to alleviating the problem. The real issue is that each of us gets overwhelmed by the magnitude of the problem and then pushes the onus of solving it to others.

In reality, what each person must believe is that she/ he has all the power to contribute to managing crisis and solving problems, just like we will, if the problem was specific to our personal life. The three ingredients needed are

Self belief – If every individual views herself/ himself as an insignificant, powerless and not influential, there is no way the person will attempt to solve problems. On the other hand, begin by owning the problem and viewing it as a personal problem. Now the scale of the problem is one, within each one’s circle of control. You see yourself needing to solve the problem. All of sudden you realize that you can make a difference, that you are amply empowered and sufficiently influential to at least mitigate, the problem around you. One must see what one can do and not worry about what the neighbors or the society at large is doing. Do your mite and be an influencer. Over time you will become a champion of the cause and possibly even be able to wield power over those around to toe the line.

Initiative – Most times we seek to do something significant. We keep searching for that opportunity. The real opportunity actually is in doing your mite, within your circle of influence and setting an example. Start small. Grow confidently. Set the tone for others to be in sync. Problems are solved only by appropriate action. Why wait for others to rope you in. Why don’t you begin and rope others in to your vision. Lead by example. Nothing major or path breaking to be done; merely demonstrate what you feel and want others to follow. Do not get discouraged by criticism or by naysayers. Use their negativity as the fuel to propel yourself into channelizing your self-belief and turn it into demonstrable results.

Persistence Starting is relatively easy. It is to continue, that is enormously tough. At times, one feels that one is pursuing a hopeless cause. Other times the progress is so slow that one is tempted to throw in the towel. Of course, the nay sayers, the pessimists, the critics and those with vested interests would keep sending negative messages; thus making one have self doubts. One needs to find a motivation to keep going. Ideally the goal in itself must provide the motivation. However, it helps to visualize the progress made, the obstacles overcome, keeping the critics at bay for each such milestone adds motivation and enthuses one to persist with passion.

Try these:

  • What is the one social problem that you notice around you about which you are passionately concerned? What have you done about it so far? What is your next step to get involved in solving it?
  • What are the three positive qualities you posses? How will you use those qualities to make a difference to the immediate environment around you or use it for a cause close to your heart?
  • Read up on Manhji – Mountain Man ( https://www.thefamouspeople.com/profiles/dashrath-manjhi-15361.php ) and / or see the movie by the same name.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

On this road called life…

On this road called life…

Life is an ongoing journey, apparently on a road that has no end. For the pessimist it looks like a perennial journey filled with woes and challenges. For the optimist it offers never ending opportunities. The fact is that on the road called life, there are both challenges and opportunities but more importantly one needs to know that the ride stops sometime and it is best that we live life to the fullest. It doesn’t matter if you are an optimist or a pessimist; what matters is how you have journeyed through your life.

As long as the ride goes on, every individual has a responsibility to himself and to all those in his circle of influence to fully utilize the ride to make one’s own life as well as those of the people around better, happier and fulfilling. At the same time, the bad times that everyone is prone to have occasionally should not overwhelm and dishearten anyone. In fact, bad times are a good reminder that on the road of life there are bumps that one needs to watch out for. One cannot be perennially euphoric about the sudden spurts of good fortune or tidings of happiness that will come our way. However, one must learn to enjoy and value such moments for the same moment will never be repeated. Be gratefully for your blessings but never forget to share that with others.

At times our troubles are caused by others. Some create it unknowingly; others create it accidentally and a few heap troubles deliberately. Much as we are tempted to take revenge or at least teach the person a lesson, it is best we forget about the troubles the said person caused. However, it is prudent to remember the incident so that we do not get into a similar situation and get worked up again. Never forget to learn the lessons from troubles and failures. Perhaps you will realize your faults that led to it. That is a lesson, the learning from which should remain lifelong with us.

Finally there is a reality that people, including us change over time. Our best friends may drift away from us or we may acquire new friends and old friends fade into the background. Sometimes close friends may turn cold and occasionally hostile. That is the nature of the law of change. There is nothing constant, except what we make a determined effort to keep constant in our responses, reactions and relationships.

Ultimately the quality of our ride on the highway of life is nothing but what we make of it. If we decide to make it a life changing positive experience, that is what you will always encounter. If we groan, moan and grudgingly welcome each new day, then that is the type of life one will witness and experience.

The ride goes on; enjoy it while it lasts.

Try these:

  1. What two things do you wish you could have changed in your life? How would it have changed you for the better?
  2. Can you recollect a friend from whom you have drifted away? Can you point out three mistakes that you made that hastened this drifting away?
  3. What are the two changes you will bring about in your life to ensure you enjoy each day that unfolds?
  4. List out the following:
  • A song that uplifts your spirits
  • A movie that resonates with you and charges you up
  • The one moment of your life that you cherish immensely
  • The one act that you did which is still a heartwarming memory for you

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Discovering the fountain within you

Discovering the fountain within you

The empty bucket that we walk around with, can be labeled many things. Excuses are the most common label. Then there are others like bad luck, not good enough, it is very tough, it is not possible for me, there is no one to help me etc. The sad part is that these empty buckets remain empty while ironically, there is within you the fountain of limitless opportunities and potential waiting to be tapped into. The question is how can one identify this fountain and how can one drink deep from this fountain. Surprisingly the question is not too difficult to answer. However, one must be ready to make an effort to find the answer and to then make double that effort to reach into the fountain within you and utilize it well.

Do a personal SWOT – Do an objective evaluation of your personal strengths, weakness, opportunities that you see being available to you and the potential threats or difficulties that can derail your success. If required pay attention to feedback from people who matter, ask mentors or elders who can give you an objective analysis. It is a self diagnosis that can help one pursue the right medicine for personal improvement and development. Surprisingly you will find that all that is required for your well being and happiness in well within you. You will discover new strengths and opportunities and you will also note that the antidote for many of your weakness and imaginary threats are also within you. All you need to do is delve in and find it.

Identify your interests/ passion – This could be in the nature of your non academic interests as well as those subjects that you are good at and also have a passion for. However, while interest could be varied, your passion is what you deeply care about and are willing to sacrifice a lot so as to pursue it. Imagine you being passionate about music but you are unable to pick up musical notes. While your interest and passion are commendable you will have to find innovative ways to ensure you can live your passion fruitfully.  Once again delve in and discover your creativity, your inner strength, undiscovered talents and re-engineer your life with these.

Outline your short term/ medium term / long term goals – These goals must be done for varied aspects of your life. You will then realize that you are already blessed with much and with diligent, focused persistence you can dig deep into the enormous potential that you have which lies untapped. Within you lies the balance that will ensure you limit your desires, be lavish with your gifting and tap into unlimited joy. Your goals are then reduced to being happy and making the world around you happier.

Move out of your comfort zone – For the vast majority, an unwillingness to step out of their comfort zone has made them look at their potential and the opportunities possible like a frog stuck in a well. When you move out of your comfort zone, you will definitely feel a little helpless and concerned but soon you will also discover that the world has much more to offer provided you are willing to take your chances. The fountain within you will gush out when you risk more, discover more and experiment more.

Try these:

Write down answers to the following questions?

  1. Who is the happiest person you have ever met? List three qualities that the person exhibited that justified your belief.
  2. What is the biggest loss you ever suffered? How long did it take to get over it?
  3. What is the one desire you still crave for? What will happen if you do not get your desire?
  4. What was the most embarrassing/ awkward moment of your life? Do you still feel terrible about it?
  5. What is your greatest weakness from among these three; anger/ jealousy / pride. How has it impacted your life?
  6. Name the three greatest blessings you have received. What is the one blessing you wished you got?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

The way to win trophies

The way to win trophies

Everyone would like to win a trophy but reality is that in a competitive world, only the deserving win it. Yet, if you look at winning personal trophies in a different way, it is possible for everyone to win a trophy for herself/ himself. To win a personal trophy, one must aim to merely improve one’s own self every day, a little bit. Cumulatively the daily improvements would add up to a significant reality that you will then value and cherish. That is exactly how all trophy winners end up standing on the podium with their trophies. As an individual you create your own podium, establish your own parameters of improvement and relish holding the trophies that you aimed for.

The key to winning those trophies lies in the quality of practice that you put in, which in turn will determine the significance of the improvement you make and the trophies in the form of successes are merely a reinforcement of what you already know; that you are a winner.

The best way to ensure that you practice effectively comes from observing the following

Having a goal – Without a goal there would neither be focus nor a motivation. So fixing up a goal, no matter what aspect of life it is for, holds the first key to success. When you fix a goal, it is obvious that you have thought through it carefully, matched it with your own personal abilities and desires and most importantly value it. A goal is not a mere statement of intent but a dream that you wake up to every moment. E.g. you dream of representing your class team. Then you scale it up to representing the school team. Progressively you scale it up.

Clearly outlining the action plan – Every goal must be accompanied by an action plan to attain that goal. The action plan includes the amount and quality of commitment that you are prepared to make, the time frames to achieve the desired progress, the measures to determine the progress. E.g. to represent your school team you will need to put in certain amount of practices time, a certain amount of physical and mental exercise and you take responsibility  for achieving those targets.

Being disciplined – The goal and the action plan become irrelevant unless one has the discipline to follow the commitment made. The problem with self discipline is that we set out our targets and we have to ensure we stick to it without any external supervision. The danger here is that we tend to lower our own standards, slack when it is convenient, rationalize our tardiness and yet expect to improve. While  raw talent always has an edge when compared to those who have to work hard to do better, in the long run it is the individual who believes in herself/ himself and gives that extra something through sheer self discipline that will hold that trophy.

Making sacrifices – Self discipline always comes with one having to make sacrifices. This is because time is always at a premium. Everyone has to make the best use of the 24 hours a day. So the person who sacrifices sleep, gives up leisure, avoids temptations, puts in that extra hour of practice who will see the results faster. E.g. in any sport the physical discipline is what brings in the stamina, the perfection of the technique, the ability to cope with pain etc. and so there can never be a compromise on physical fitness even if the individual has to compromise on many other alternatives.

Being persistent – Often times one cannot really visualize the improvements despite the hard work and discipline. That is when one needs to believe in one’s self and persist with faith and hope. Never falter in your belief nor slack in your determination. Simply plod along even when the horizon seems distant or the effort seems super human. With each passing day you will get a feeling of having won one more trophy simply because you did not give up. The fact that you are improving is a huge bonus that comes with the effort.

Relishing every success – The biggest problem of losers is that they never realize or appreciate the numerous victories that they have earned. They get so focused on noticeable trophies that come with recognition and applause that they forget that every small improvement they have achieved is a victory in itself. E.g. a student who is just passing his exam but with hard work manages to improve her/ his scores in each successive exam has just won a trophy every time she/ he improves the marks. Standing first or scoring 100% may be way beyond the personal abilities but doubling their marks is a major achievement.

Try these:

What are the two things you always wanted to attempt but never dared to? Make one of these a goal and aim to achieve it before the end of the year. Every effort you do towards that goal should be seen as a victory when you inch closer to your goal.

What area of your personal life needs improvement? E.g. financial / academic / professional / personal development/ social interaction etc. Choose one or two such areas and have an action plan to make a difference that you feel in yourself over the next 6 months.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Learn by using the power of your senses

Learn by using the power of your senses

The human race is truly blessed with the unique gift of learning and widening knowledge in a multitude of disciplines. While the plant and animal kingdom learn to adapt and adopt for survival, it is the human species that is bestowed the privilege of a brain that is able to process and imbibe a wide array of subjects not just for survival but also for personal growth and happiness. However, the unfortunate and unintended consequence has been that human beings are focused on academic learning, laying stress on an evaluation method that is not necessarily the best way of assessing knowledge and worse of all focusing on higher learning without any heed to the basic learning that of using the five senses more effectively.

What we need to focus more on, if we need to become better learners is become more aware of the basic five senses that each of us blessed with, from birth. These senses are the first touch points of learning, which is what the primitive man used, long before any formal educational structure was put in place.

Observe not just see – We see so many thing around us but do we pause to observe and examine the finer nuances of the wonders around us. Observe the various species of flora and fauna around us. See how they bloom differently, adapt seamlessly to the environment and attract different types of birds and insects. Take two leaves and observe the subtle differences. On a more personal level, have you observed how people around you respond or react to your presence and mannerisms? You will get valuable insight about yourself by merely observing responses from people you interact with.

Feel don’t merely touch – When we buy clothes from a shop do we not touch the fabric. Are you clear in your mind what you are seeking in the fabric from that touch? When your pet wants you to hug it, does it just want a symbolic hug or does it hope to feel your warmth in the touch? Are you able to convey your feelings through touch? Take a news paper, a glossy magazine, and different types of paper or cloth and feel it with your eyes closed. Take a wad of paper currency of various denominations then close your eyes and feel each note and estimate the value of the currency.

Soak in the aroma don’t just smell – How often do we gobble up our meals at home and at times criticize the food whereas we pay a fancy price at a high end restaurant praising the ambiance, the style of presentation of the food and even spare time to soak in the aroma of the food. Do you not get intrigued by the smell of the first rain on mud? Do we realize how a wonderful aroma can immediately enhance your mood and if the aroma is related to food you even being to salivate.

Enjoy the taste don’t just eat – When we talk about salivating, it is obvious that we are itching to gobble up the food. Perhaps appreciating the aesthetics of the food prepared and served can add even more value to the dining experience. However it is in savoring the food slowly, relishing every morsel and letting the taste buds soaking in the various flavors that makes the meal both wholesome and an exhilarating experience. Try the same with raw mango, tamarind, raw vegetables and you will realize that there is much to be enjoyed in tasting not just eating to satisfy hunger.

Listen don’t just hear – Take a large sea shell and hold the open side close to your ears. You seem to be hearing the roar of the sea. Go to a garden or a beach or a river side and sit silently with the focus only on hearing the various sounds around. Ideally close your eyes and just listen. You will discern sounds that you never realized before. Not just the chirping of the birds but the rustle in the wind, the gurgling sound of flow water in a nearby stream, the waves either gushing or ebbing . Listening helps you connect to the wonders around not to mention it also helps you empathize better with those who communicate with you.

Try these:          

  • Take currency of various denominations and observe the subtle differences. Pay attention to certain markings on it that will help the blind identify the value of the notes by touch.
  • Close your eyes and now try to feel the markings that you may have observed.
  • Ask a friend to get you petals of different flowers / leaves of different plants in a closed box. Blind fold yourself and try to hold each petal and identify the flower based on touch and possibly smell.
  • Get a friend to cut a small piece of vegetable and give it to you to taste and identify the vegetable. Ideally you should have your eyes closed or be blindfolded when tasting.
  • Take a music system play a song and change the various sound settings like bass , treble etc and listen to the difference.
  • Take a deck of cards and notice the subtle differences between the different kings, queens and jacks in the deck. Which king has only one eye in the deck?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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Choose joy

Choose joy

Happiness is a choice that you make every moment of your life. You are reading this possibly because you are happy to read it. Possibly you are reading this post to divert yourself from some pressing worries. Perhaps you are reading this because you hope to be inspired or your get to learn some new words or simply because it appeared in your inbox and you are curious to know what it is all about. Whatever be your reason to read, it better be a conscious choice but more importantly it must be a choice that makes you feel happy. Choosing joy is not an option but a compulsion because the world around has enough and more challenges, worries and problems that will engulf you and joy is that antidote to cope with it.

Finding joy is not as complicated as one may think, considering the numerous challenges one faces daily. It is all about adopting /embracing the right mix of self belief, attitude, optimism and being pragmatic.

Self belief It is the belief that you are blessed with choices and that you will choose the right path as long as you can visualize joy at the end of it. E.g. A student has studied well but unfortunately gets a very tough question paper. Despite the possibility of not faring well or even failing, he/ she refuses to copy because in her/ his eyes that would be cheating. It is the self belief that no matter what the outcome, I will remain true to my character and values.

Attitude – It is how one approaches each moment and the changing landscape that makes life so unpredictable. E.g. The student referred to in the previous point can become despondent that all her/ his efforts are in vain or can choose to look at the challenges as a learning to put even more effort or to be more selective in what is being studied. The attitude decides how one embraces joy no matter what the situation.

Optimism – It is seeing the bright side of things. Even in the darkest hours look for a glimmer, a ray of sunshine or at least a twinkling star. E.g. The student who gets a tough paper must make an effort to attempt the paper and be optimistic that her/ his effort will give a favorable outcome. The assumption of course is that the student has studied well and so can put in a decent effort.

Pragmatic – Choosing joy is always the result of pragmatic thinking. If the situation is hopeless it is better to embrace it stoically rather than in grief and despondency. E.g. The student can keep wondering and hurting that all his/ her efforts are in vain or could lament his/ her fate. On the other hand of one is practical look at the tough exam paper as an eye opener on how one must be better prepared. Focus in doing one’s best using all the knowledge gained through the hard work put in. If the paper has been uniformly tough for everyone, chances of those giving it a great shot passing are much higher. Giving up and not answering is a pragmatic but wasted effort as the outcome is now never in doubt.

Try these:          

  1. Can you recollect two of your most terrifying moments in your life? What were your reactions? How did you overcome the situation?
  2. You arrive at the airport for a much awaited foreign holiday. The airport suddenly announces that all flights are cancelled due to major technical glitch at the airport. It is peak holiday season and you can never get a booking again.  What will be your response to the situation? How will you choose joy after the initial shock and despondency?
  3. How would you react to the following situations?
  • The police has issued a fine for over speeding. The car was being use by your friend when the incident occurred which was captured on CCTV.
  • You dropped your phone accidentally and by mistake a passerby stomped on it with her spike heels. The screen is shattered.
  • You go for a health check up and the doctor says you need a specialized check up for what the doctor suspects is rather serious ailment.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com