Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Creativity’ Category

03-first-3-wordsOne of the problems many of us have is our inability to really identify something positive to focus upon. This is partly because our minds tend to stray towards what troubles us, our problems real and imagined and varied anxieties that we have made ‘much ado about nothing’. The problem becomes more acute at the start of the year for most of our plans/ resolutions tend to center around unfinished business, challenges to be met and overcoming our limitations. The grid above, however, has ample positives that stare at us and it would help if we focus on the first 3-5 positive words noticed and for the rest of the year align our goals to meet the goals those words beckon.

Honestly I would have loved to list out some of the words above, but then it would take away the fun for you.  Instead, my friends, I am using my power of identification to share my experience of using my time to focus on some goals that have helped me gain friends, popularity and happiness. While money is important, it is the fun of influencing lives that really drives me. The beauty of this is that, I can with all honesty confess, that I have a large circle of young friends and interacting with them makes me feel young at heart. By the way, you also need to use your time not just for yourself but also for others. Keeping busy would also ensure good health in mind and body. If you look carefully there is something positive in every line except for one word. It is not for me to identify it but yes if you have the lust for life, even that word would be positive although most times we use it in a negative context.

Have fun decoding the above and more importantly use those words to make this year a wonderful and productive year for you and all those whose lives you influence.

Try these:

The grid gives you enough to focus on. Break time for both you and me. Actually, it is break time for me just for this post; you have ample scope to keep busy for the rest of the year.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Read Full Post »

21- The control challengeOne of the major reasons we are stressed is because we are unable to keep our emotions in check when faced with a dilemma or confusion or problem. We then get overwhelmed, fearful and react impulsively.  Our reactions are often in anger, frustration and despondency. Rational behavior takes a back seat, the challenge of the moment looks ominous and damage control is our instinctive allay which then becomes the focus of our attention. If ever one who faced a crisis behaved in this manner, there would be very few who survived disasters. If every researcher adopted the same attitude there would be very few discoveries. Every major war is testimony to the resilience of the vanquished and destroyed, to rebuild and grow despite the severity of their ruins physically, financially and mentally. So what is it that makes the human race change, progress and succeed despite the upheavals, the disasters and the disruptions that seem to perennially confront them?

The answer lies in how one responds. The key is not to react but to respond. The difference between the two is in how you control your attitude, your thinking and your actions.

Attitude: Do we visualize a problem as a disaster or as challenge to be overcome. It is our attitude that will determine our perception of the challenge on hand. Those who are fearful, those just wanting to plod forward and those who are faint hearted would look at obstacles as useless, irritating and insurmountable. They would then settle for compromise solutions rather than a resolution of the problem. On the other hand those having supreme confidence in their own abilities, those who seek long term solutions and those willing to take on a challenge would approach every problem with a ‘ seek the hidden solution’ attitude. They too would get irritated at times, would feel frustrated momentarily, be tempted to give up. However, they resolve to effectively  tackle the challenge even if it takes time, even if they have seek help from others and even if the world around belittles and criticizes their efforts. They have the positive can do – will do attitude.

Thinking : Our attitude will determine how we approach a situation. Those who are positive and determined to find solutions would rein in their negative emotions of fear, anger, disappointment and frustration. Instead they would bring into play their strengths, realign their thinking to seek solutions and refocus their attention on varied possibilities in order to overcome the challenge on hand. The will not hesitate to seek the expertise of others; they would be keen observers and listeners for they are sure there exists a solution that they just need to discover. They do not let the problem slip from their mind but they keep mulling over it to let the subconscious work on it. Their thoughts are focused on responding to the challenge rationally, logically and decisively

Action: There are times when quick action holds the key and there is little time to elaborately think and plan. Emergencies are classical examples be it a natural disaster, a fire, an accident or  even events like missing a flight or losing your mobile/ wallet. Even in such situations, the action must not be purely impulsive (it will be largely  impulsive when your life itself is threatened like if you are in a building that is on fire, since self preservation is a natural instinctive mechanism for survival) but taken with a calm and cool head. Controlling panic whilst seeking a solution would provide more possibilities. The action must be taken decisively and not tentatively; this is possible when the action plan is based in clear headed thinking and with full awareness of the consequences. The action must be to arrive at a solution with minimum damage.

Try these:

  1. Pick up a news paper and attempt to solve the crosswords or similar puzzles that appear in it. Your attitude, thinking and action would be reflected in how you respond to this challenge.
  2. List out three instances when you panicked. What was the final outcome of those situations? What role did you play in each of the given situations?
  3. Of the three key points listed above which of them is your primary problem.
  • Attitude – By nature are you and optimist or a pessimist
  • Thinking – Can you think both logically and creatively or do you prefer to follow instructions?
  • Action – Are you a self starter or do you like to act as instructed.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Read Full Post »

20-The child in you

As we grow up there is a tendency to think more rationally, behave more maturely and respond more circumspectly. The fact is that with age comes responsibility, pragmaticism and the need for socially acceptable interaction. However, in the process we often end being artificial, contrived and awkward for we have lost our natural grace, spontaneity and exuberance. We curb our enthusiasm, react with restrain and seek to fit in. The adult in us desperately tries to hide the child in us, fetters us with chains of social norms and nearly suffocates us as we behave artificially to meet social norms. Apparently life is fun but it is a put on, we project it as fulfilling whilst in reality it is suffocating and beneath the surface we crave to express ourselves unfettered, carefree and joyously.

Ask yourself when are you most happy. The weekends for sure especially when there is a policy to drop the veneer of power dressing. Picnics and outings come a close second for there are no shackles of do’s and dont’s. Informal social gatherings, where you are at  liberty to be your own person. Holidays, when you fully control your life and do pretty much as you please. When you are enjoying a social event be it a musical program, a theater event or a party with friends. Don’t forget the treks, the boys/ girls day out and the ever favorite class mates meets. Pause and ask yourself what makes these events special moments for me. The answer is obvious, you drop your mask of being someone you really are not and become the real you.

The challenge is to seamlessly integrate that child like enthusiasm, spontaneity and exuberance into daily life and balance it with the social norms and pressures imposed on you as a professional, an executive and an adult. It may look a tad difficult but in reality it is the child in us that we often curb that allows us to retain our sanity, allow us to cope with stress and most of all make life fun. We discuss the latest headlines with colleagues giving it our own touch of interpretation, we argue and differ with others, we plan a meal out with colleagues spontaneously and we get all agog when we talk about something passionately. We can do more; we can personalize our workstation to reflect our individuality, we can surprise others with a gift or a treat most unexpectedly, genuinely appreciate something about another person, personalize a sharing with individuals (example you know a person is an avid gardener and you come across an excellent article/ book / clipping on gardening and you make it a point to share that with the individual concerned).

One danger though, of bringing out the child in us, is our over enthusiasm that results us in misusing social media and irritating others. Mindlessly posting, forwarding and liking just to garner attention to ourselves, simply because of the ease of doing it, is a very real issue for then we are childish not childlike. There is definitely a need to balance our adult like maturity with our child like enthusiasm. Life out there is fun because the adult in us takes care of our future needs and the child in us allows us to experience the wonders around us that makes life colorful, magical and enjoyable.

Try these:

Revisit old photo albums and make a collage of the pictures that bring out the special moments from your life. Share it with family and friends at a special occasion like a milestone birthday or anniversary.

A week or two prior to your birthday, review and list out all the fun times, high points, special moments, awkward moments and people who made the year gone by special for you. If inclined to, share them with your friends and family.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Read Full Post »

8 - Refocus and get clarity

Clarity of thought is a quality that is essential for every individual so that he /she can progress forward in the right direction. Unfortunately for a variety of reasons, individuals have always grappled with the problem of confusion, an inability to be decisive and worse of constantly looking back and wondering if they chose their path wisely. Most of our lives we have been told to avoid problems. In school one is taught to solve problems. Most of our adult life we are anticipating problems and seeking ways to avoid it. As a result the problem overwhelms us, we are hell bent on avoiding or solving problems and we are apprehensive of moving away from the beaten path lest we encounter problems that we have never experienced. So instead of exploring and discovering we prefer to gingerly and tentatively traverse on known paths occasionally daring to venture into some shallow waters. Our horizons are limited our growth is stunted and our sense of achievement is scaled down.

Today the startups, the youngsters having dreams of alternative professions and those leapfrogging from staid professions to dynamic alternatives are tribute to mind set change from problem avoidance to solution finding. Our training of being defensive and risk averse has actually prepared us to easily reorient our thinking into seeking problems and finding solutions. Instead of letting your mind constantly worry about the problem, let it now dwell in anticipation of finding alternative solutions. With this changed orientation in our thinking we allow our creative self to take over. Problems are merely irritants, solutions are there to be found and in finding the solutions you discover your potential, create something unique and possibly even build a new paradigm of success for yourself. Man’s inability to fly was a problem since evolution. Those who saw it as a problem and did nothing about it rationalized that we really didn’t need to fly and so came up with alternative means of transportation. The Wright brothers on the other hand viewed the inability to fly as a problem deserving an appropriate solution. Their aircraft crude as it may have been pioneered the aircraft industry later. The hot air balloon and the drones are also examples of how solution centric answers can become very effective.

We need to watch out for three impediments that could take away our focus from being solution centric

Fear of the problem – It is true that every problem comes with its share of anxiety. When we let this anxiety overtake our rationality we remain problem centric. Our anxiety increases with the passing of time and no acceptable solution visible on the horizon. On the other hand if we analyze the problem dispassionately, we would be able to appreciate the varied dimensions of the problem and perhaps even see various alternative solutions peeping from some corners. Pick up a newspaper and try to solve the crosswords or Sudoku problem in it.

Distraction due to anxietyBefore you attempt the above keep a personal time limit to solve the problem. Notice how you get more tense, distracted and frustrated that the time is running out. Your attention is now drawn towards the deadline rather than the problem itself. This distraction will take away your concentration. On the other hand if you focus on finding solutions you will get at least some answers by the time the deadline approaches.

Urge to disown the problem – Very often we just want to somehow get rid of the problem. If possible we try to pass it on to others. If not we try to find excuses for the problem still being there. Very often we try to find someone to blame for the problem. This urge to get rid of the problem, to disown the problem, to pass the buck is our way of escapism. It neither helps in getting a solution nor does it ease our anxiety for the problem persists.

Watch out for the above and immediately change your thinking to finding a solution and keep seeking alternate solutions till you have ample alternatives to choose the best one. Yes problems often come with many many solutions. Keep searching for the best one.

Try this:

Click on this link to get an idea of how to FOCUS

You are given a barometer and asked to measure the height of a building. Think of 3 possible solutions to the problem. (Having a science inclination would help but oh yes every one can attempt it)

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Read Full Post »

4 - Making yesterday jelousOne of the biggest challenges that human beings face is feeling enthusiastic everyday and enjoying each moment of life. One way is to define a purpose / a goal for one’s own self and make this the focus for making progress. This is what largely drives entrepreneurs. The trouble is, most of us are not naturally self driven, so setting a goal itself becomes a challenge. This is particularly true with those who are employees. They are largely confronted by the same routine work, have little leeway to bring creativity into their jobs and largely feel unappreciated However, every individual can bring enthusiasm to their daily routine and life by adopting some simple steps. This is the way to make today so awesome that yesterday gets jealous.

Visualize your role as an important task in the overall scheme of things. The role that one plays in the overall scheme of things is often not know to us and as a result, we tend to undervalue our contribution. It is essential to appreciate and believe that your role is critical to the next process and also to all subsequent processes all of which lead to positive results along the way. This perspective helps one value their role and job.

Learn to appreciate others and also to identify the appreciation given by others to you. You will notice that whenever you appreciate someone genuinely you feel a sense of satisfaction. You would also observe that others too start noticing and appreciating your efforts. At times you may even get some subtle hints for improvements which are actually an appreciation of your real capabilities and potential that you can realize.

Don’t be a loner; focus on being a team player. It is possible that you are exceptionally talented and can do an outstanding job. However, it is important to be aware that your role just prepares the way for others to carry on the good work forward. While you must take pride in your abilities, it is very important that you give credit, act responsibly and work in tandem with your team members. Team members will begin to then value your contribution, start depending on you more and ensure that you are an integral part of the team process from planning to execution to sharing credit and relishing success.

Make your work environment and work a creative endeavor. Even the most mundane tasks can be made interesting and enjoyable by adding a dash of creativity. It could be as simple as varying your routine, adding zing to your work area, adopting new practices at work, delegating work where possible and taking on something different. Creativity is no ones prerogative and so each one has the potential to unleash their creativity and make their work environment and the work itself exciting, interesting and pleasurable.

Adopt a work mantra that incorporates standardization, simplification and elimination. With a little imagination, a dash of enterprise and loads of self confidence most routine jobs can be standardized. This will then enable one to simplify the job by adopting / adapting relevant technology. It is also possible that some systems that are irrelevant and superfluous can be eliminated in the process. Periodically reviewing one’s job and the relevance of each task will help one identify areas for improvement. It would also help one appreciate one’s responsibility better and it becomes a motivator to give off one’s best.

Grow in your job by taking on more challenges, grabbing opportunities and being a smart worker. Those who grow in their jobs and get a bigger role are people who have mastered the art of taking on new challenges, letting go jobs they have mastered and most importantly worked hard and also worked smartly. If one gets comfortable in doing the routine, growth will be stunted. You can do something new when you are willing to move out of your comfort zone and take on new challenges. Perhaps this would require fresh learning, possibly require more hard work and for sure involves the risk of making mistakes. Yet, new challenges provide stimulus, variety and growth prospects. Smart work is intelligently tackling the tasks on hand. This could involve experimenting, inviting problems and opening yourself to criticism. However, it could also mean realizing your potential, showcasing your talents and finding more interesting opportunities.

Go on an try to make your yesterday jealous !!!

Try this:

  1. Think of 3- 5 things that you will do to make your work space more appealing, less cluttered and a fun place to work from.
  2. Here is a little exercise to test your creativity. It is simpler than you think but you will have to visualize things quite differently to find the answer.
  3. Parking Slot No
  4. Here is another simple quiz to stimulate your grey cells. The answer to the first question is given to help you get an idea of the solution.
  • Q1. Which alphabet is a question? Y
  • Q2. Which alphabet is an insect?
  • Q3. Which alphabet is a part of our body?
  • Q4. Which alphabet is a drink?
  • Q5. Which alphabet is a vegetable?
  • Q6. Which alphabet is in geometry box?
  • Q7. Which alphabet is a source of salt?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Read Full Post »

31-Create your Self Portrait anewIt is not what you are but what you make of yourself that will ultimately define you. However, to do that one must be able to visualize what one wants to achieve, constantly work on making changes to one’s self with that vision in mind and proactively work on creating a new self that personifies and brings out the best out of you. This is a tough call partly because instead of redefining ourselves we are largely focused on imitating others, partly because we do not have the self belief that we can change for the better and largely because we are fatalistic and resign to our fate. While a dynamic self portrait is merely symbolic of the immense potential each of us has, it is important to also bear in mind that we cannot photoshop our life, our deeds, our efforts or our achievements. We need to bring out the changes ourselves by sheer passion, persistence and patience.

The following are pointers to key areas of our life that we need to literally touch up so as to enable us to live out a life that is fulfilling and representative of our full potential.

Attitude – Having the right attitude holds the key to any form of progress for every human being. If one can develop an attitude of positivity, optimism and imbibe a never say die spirit then no challenge is insurmountable, no task too menial or any achievement the pinnacle. The right attitude helps inject enthusiasm, creativity and take proactive initiatives that propel us in the right direction and abets progress.

Self Motivation – Without self motivation every good intent remains merely a dream. Most times a good attitude will generate self motivation but we have to work on sustaining it even when progress is slow, obstacles are many, our spirit is flagging and our urge to give up is overwhelming. A self motivated individual would find reasons to pursue passionately and prevail till the goal is attained. A good aid to be self motivated is to visualize the big picture or ultimate goal and to clearly outline the intermediate steps to attain that. Pursuing a passion or linking the goal to a passion would be the perfect way to constantly be self motivated.

Imagination – With a colorful imagination one can visualize the improbable, see beyond the obvious, create dramatically different images and most of all learn to find possibilities all the time. They say opportunities often disguise themselves in the garb of difficulties and it is only the imaginative that can spot them. Imagination also helps one create chances, seize the moment and bounce back from every setback. Without imagination one would see things in mere shades of grey, be confined to the dungeons of monotony and merely survive without embracing the joys of life. Imagination gives wings to a thought, a spring to your step and zeal to your mission.

Self belief – The degree of confidence one has in one’s abilities is a major indicator of self belief. However, self belief goes much beyond mere confidence and is an assimilation of diverse traits like commitment, discretion, daring, risk taking and rationality. Self belief comes from knowledge, upbringing, passion, learning and mental toughness. Self belief must be distinguished from foolhardiness, in as much as the latter is nothing but either over confidence or misplaced self belief.

Effort –Without effort, the self portrait that you will visualize would be just a figment of imagination; an illusion; a dream; a wish; a hope. Effort generates momentum to a pre determined destination and propels thought to be channelized appropriately. All the traits, abilities, learning and mental strength is tested only, when effort is used to mix and mould the product to be showcased. Effort also helps you discover yourself. It helps you understand your strengths and weakness, it makes you aware of your own potential and often helps you discover qualities and traits that you were never aware of.

Spend some time on visualizing your goals. These could be broadly categorized as personal goals, professional goals, self actualization goals. Spend time in understanding your own attitude and reactions to various goals that you have identified e.g. Financial goals might require you to be very self disciplined but your own attitude is to live life king size. Perhaps a diagnosis of your attitude could help you realize your folly and make you aware of the extra discipline needed to meet your financial goals. Find a way to be self motivated so that your quest to attain your goal is not a burden but a personal achievement. Be imaginative enough to discover alternatives that appeal to you and tap into yourself belief that will enable you to keep your eye on your goal and ears closed to the naysayers while continuing your effort and progressing towards your goal.

See yourself evolve into a different person; a more confident and successful individual who dared to change himself/ herself and the world around too !

Try these:

  1. List out 3 things you would like to change in your subordinate / kids and your boss / spouse. How would you go about telling this to them, in a manner that would ensure, that your objective of bringing about the desired change would be effectively implemented by them?
  2. List out 3 people who you interact with often and whose feedback you value. Identify atleast one negative feedback you have received from them in the recent past. Can you work on rectifying the fault pointed out by them?
  3. Which animal / bird best represents your characteristics? Write down 3 – 5 qualities that the animal possesses / displays that closely represents qualities that you posses. Get a picture of the animal and note down these qualities on the picture and place it in a location that will enable you to frequently see it and remind yourself of the traits you posses.

Do not forget that doing all of the above takes EFFORT. No pain no gain !

You cannot photoshop your life but you certainly can leave behind a good impression that does not require any photoshopping.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Read Full Post »

23- Your Response to change determines makes the differenceIt is well known that change is the only constant in life and that it is imperative to adapt to change. However today we view change from a different perspective, of how it is vital for us to understand and appreciate how we respond to the challenge of change, which is forever inundating us. To begin with we need to be aware that change is a process and our response is a compulsion, a reaction or an initiative. Our response will often determine the outcome of the effect that change has on us; change either imposes itself on us or we accept it with grace or we nurture it affectionately.

When change is a compulsion it indicates that we did not anticipate it or we ignored it or that we were too stubborn to accept it. If one is able to make peace with the reality that change brings about and even reluctantly accept the change it is possible that one can survive the effects of change. The biggest change is being brought about by the technological revolution. The older generation would psyche themselves into believing that they are not capable of adapting to the technological changes and as a result often feel lonely and isolated. Similarly organizations that did not feel the winds of change often got blown away when the technology revolution gathered momentum. In a fast paced world where the pace of change is in geometric proportions, it is only the people who change at least after the change who can survive. It is imposed and is then the compulsion of the times

When change is a reaction it implies that we are attuned to the happenings around and that one is open to understand, appreciate and gracefully accept the change. The numerous initiatives of NGO’s and governmental agencies to health concerns, ecological concerns, natural disasters, child labor, educational imperatives etc are in many ways changes that a more aware society is keen to highlight. Technology be it in the form of harnessing solar and wind energy or waste disposal or harnessing nuclear power are also changes that nudges us to become more aware and encourages us to quickly adapt and adopt the inevitable. People who change with change will succeed because they quickly reacted to the change they noticed and accepted.

When change is an initiative it is a proactive response to a concern, an opportunity or the creation of something absolutely new. Look around and there are ample problems all crying out for solutions. Those who can visualize these concerns as a possible problem to be solved would take the initiative to find solutions that would ultimately lead to a change. Similarly those who can creatively scan the environment to add value by shaking up the status quo are leveraging the opportunities around. The numerous apps that are mushrooming are a clear sign of how change is becoming an initiative that unlocks value for those who respond proactively. Then there are those who disrupt the existing order with revolutionary ideas and creations. The ATM machines, the credit card revolution, the online payment gateways have turned banking and finance on its head. Similarly the concepts of laser surgery, pain management drugs, robotic manufacturing etc. are initiatives that have redefined the existing world order. Notice that all these people cause the change bringing about a revolution; the Windows, Google, Facebook , Whatsapp are leading the world because they took the initiative to change.

Try these:

  1. Look around and identify at least 5 possible areas of improvement in the world around you. It is not necessary that you have the skill or competence to proactively make those changes but idea generation itself is a proactive initiative.
  2. Scan the news papers and websites to identify opportunities for you to take some initiative and give expression to your ideas/ creativity. E.g. Currently there is a short story writing opportunity for aspiring writers being run by a leading newspaper. Similarly there is one leading airline seeking ideas to incorporate in their app.
  3. Do you have any fresh / new ideas to address the following concerns
  • Make citizens avoid the use of plastic bags
  • Encourage citizens to segregate waste into wet and dry waste
  • Ensure that electricity is not wasted because street lights are not switched off in the day time or water is not wasted because a public tap is leaking or a pipeline has burst.
  • Make citizens aware of the status of public interest projects like road widening, building over overbridges, setting up of garbage / sewage disposal plants etc.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »