Category: Difficulties

Is this your life’s mission ?

16-29 Jun 15- Is this your life's missionLife is a constant challenge but not an impossible one. In fact with a little imagination and a lot of self belief, life can be made truly interesting the challenges notwithstanding. Just look around and you will find so many people happy and smiling. Very many of them would possibly be not so fortunate as you in terms of education, knowledge, financial well being, personal health etc. and yet they all know how to laugh despite their many challenges. The real challenge though is not merely to exist but to live and thrive with aplomb. To make that happen ensure you have an abundance of

Passion – Passion comes from within you; the depth of your emotions is the measure of your passion. The more positive emotions you feel very strongly about, the larger the intensity of your positive passions. Some negative emotions like anger at injustice, deep hurt felt when one fails, the competitive urge to succeed at all costs etc. also trigger passion that has a positive shade to it because it becomes an incentive to go for success. Passion is both a tremendous motivator as well as a source of unflagging energy that spurs one to action until one succeeds.

Compassion – This is passion for the less fortunate, the weak, the poor and the marginalized. This is a quality that grounds us to reality, allows us to explore the softer side of our personality and transforms us to being better human beings. Without compassion, we would be egoistic, uncaring, dictatorial, emotionless and cruel. We would almost turn out to be slave owners who saw the slaves as mere tools to meeting a personal end which is fueled by personal passion. Compassion allows one to experience empathy, stretches and exercises the heart muscles through the emotional pressure put on it and allows us a good reality check about how blessed each one of us is, as compared to the less fortunate around. Compassion brings balance and purpose to life.

Humor – A sense of humor is a vital quality that makes the human race so unique and special as compared to any other living specie. Humor is a bond that is perfect antidote to any pain. While physical pain can be alleviated with appropriate medicine humor is the all purpose balm that gives the quickest relief to psychological pain, worries, anxieties and nervousness. Humor not only calms the nerves but also peps one up with a sense of control, confidence and care freeness allowing the mind to be cool, calm and collected even in the most tense situations like in the case of an interview or when going for an operation. The ability to laugh at one’s own self is the highest degree of humor one can cultivate and sarcasm, poking fun at others and finding humor in another’s pain would be not only crass but counterproductive humor. Humor provides laughter to the heart and soul and when the heart and soul are happy, life becomes a breeze.

Style – Style is personalized statement that gives one a sense of unique identity. Style is often encapsulated in the outer presentation of person like the dress sense, the accessories, the perfume one uses etc. However style goes much deeper than that and is reflected in the mannerisms, the tone and tenor of communication, the behavior displayed in social situations, the control exercised when an emergency occurs and in substance of one’s interactions. Style is the living embodiment of upbringing, education and identity of an individual. It is an excellent barometer of the personality of an individual.

Try these:

  1. Identify 3- 5 activities / causes / concerns that you are passionate about. Now pick one of these and outline how you can substantially contribute to the same and commit both time and effort to it in an orderly and disciplined manner.
  2. Can you think of at least 3 favorite jokes. Go an share it with a friend, a sibling and a new acquaintance. Did you feel they appreciated the joke or only politely laughed? If you slipped on a banana peel on a crowded street, how would you react to the embarrassment?
  3. Observe people around you and jot down the unique style statement they convey. What style appeals to you and what is the style that your detest. Can you identify the specific reason / s for your likes and dislikes of a particular style. What is the most unique style statement for which you have been complimented for.?
  4. You would certainly have a tremendous feeling of compassion but would possibly not really know how to express it except perhaps to give alms to the beggars or feed some strays. Can you attempt the following?
  • Visiting an old age home and spend time with the inmates
  • Visiting a prison and trying to understand them
  • Spending time at an orphanage and playing with the inmates
  • Visiting an animal shelter and understanding how they work and what they do
  • Do visit a hospice and give solace to those in pain and fear.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

View the trailer of your life’s coming attractions by being imaginative and constructive

7-10Jun 14- View the trailer of your life to be

If our life were a movie, how interesting it would be to see the trailer of it and feel the thrill and excitement that is yet to come. No doubt there would be moments of pain and anguish, disappointments and frustrations, but like most movies, the end would always be a happy, idealistic and hopefully enjoyable one. Unfortunately, the movie of our life is scripted daily and so we continue to be a hero/ heroine on the stage of our life, little knowing what is scripted for us. Fortunately, we are also blessed with the gift of imagination, which enables us to take charge of our life, script and direct it the way we want to and succeed in large measure to have the most idyllic ending. So get set to telescope your imagination into your future and script your own success. Doing this is a simple matter of being imaginative ; begin by stating your life goals, anticipate the success you will achieve, roll up your sleeves and participate in the process, creating something tangible that you imagined and celebrating your achievements.

State – We often have wild fantasies, crazy ideas, some passionate beliefs, some out of the box thoughts etc but rarely do we ink it out and mull over it. As long as you can transcribe your imagination into words/ pictures/ doodles you will be able to attempt some work on it. Imagination should begin in the head but must be stated and spelled out clearly. Right now the best way to utilize the learning from the post is to jot down at least 3 ideas that came to your mind as you read this post.

Anticipate – If you have written down at least one idea, you would notice that your mind is already thinking about it even as you read the post. There is a sense of anticipation that the idea is workable. You are already evaluating alternatives to make the idea work. If you haven’t got an idea, you are reading further in the hope that you will get an ideas you read the post or at least at some point get some idea sometime later. Notice that it is this anticipation of getting a benefit that is motivating you to read. So stating your goal or vision or idea or dream helps you anticipate the next possibilities to attain your stated objective.

Participate – If you want things to happen, you have to start moving things. This essentially means you have to participate in the process. You give wings to your imagination and soar towards your goal by building the wings through effort, team work, rework, network and hard work. Even when you play a game, the key is your participation; if you don’t participate you can neither enjoy the game and for sure you cannot expect to succeed in the game. Participation must as far as possible be voluntary, self driven and pleasurable.

Create – As you sow so shall you reap; your intent, purpose, extent and passion in participation will determine what and how you create and achieve your goals/ dreams/ wish list. The process of translating your imagination into something tangible could be frustrating, backbreaking and dodgy. Yet, the experience would be invaluable, the rewards exhilarating and self fulfillment complete. There are times we won’t achieve perfection, some outcomes would be disappointing and criticism can be a constant companion but as long as you are progressing towards your goal and creating your dreams into reality, your life will be fulfilling.

Celebrate– The best part of imagination is not in day dreaming but in realizing that dream; in being a part of the achievement; in sharing the joy of the success and in relishing the fruits of success. Achievement is not merely a statistic but a vibrant creation and you are the heartbeat that pumps life into that creation.

Give your imagination wings and then use them to soar up high and enjoy the view.

Try this

  • How would you creatively / imaginatively dispose of your old clothes, books, footwear, odds and ends that are unnecessarily occupying space?
  • If you were to organize a party what unique games will you incorporate to make the party more entertaining and participative.
  • Considering your academics and interest, think up 3 unique career opportunities that you can possibly explore.

PS: Transcribe your answers into tangible achievements in the next 6 month.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Live a life that helps you leave a legacy

5-21 May 14- Live a life -Leave a legacy

Like the Northern Star that steadfastly guides the lost traveler, the quote today provides us an excellent pointer to what must drive us in making our life more meaningful, fulfilling and exhilarating. It also offers us a fresh perspective about our existence, reminding us that we need to make the most of life, for someday we will cease to be alive physically but we can ensure our legacy lives on.

Many of us get disheartened because we view ourselves as mere mortals who cannot create an impact on the world nor can we escape the drudgery of living as destiny has chosen us to. This is a fallacy that we have ingrained into our psyche and can be easily corrected by being aware that our life can positively impact all those you come in contact with and that each of us is given the opportunity to make the best of all we have. It is apt that at this juncture I share with you a link (http://chairbornewarrior.wordpress.com/category/my-second-life/ )that outlines the story of an extraordinary individual Mr.M.P.Anil Kumar who passed away yesterday. In many ways this post is also a tribute to him but more importantly his story captures the very core of today’s post.

Here are a few tips on making your life a legacy

Know yourself – This is the toughest part, partly because we can never be completely objective about our self but mainly because we are constantly evolving and our personality evolves with varied experiences, new knowledge and changing perspectives. Accepting our limitations also requires tremendous courage while identifying our strengths requires passionate self belief. Yet once we begin to understand and accept the being we are we can carefully circumvent our limitations while fully harnessing our strengths. E.g. Academics may not be everyone’s strength but some of us have diligence, commitment, hard work, vision etc as allies that we can harness fully to succeed.

Identify your passion – Many of us would candidly admit that lazing around, sleeping, day dreaming or being a couch potato is our most passionate activity. Yet we are also conscious that all of them are unproductive passions. So leaving aside these, list out some productive activities that you will happily engage in. Now creatively work out ways and means to make these activities fetch you income / returns. E.g. If you are a movie buff see if you can be a movie critic or if you have a natural flair for gadgets / gizmo’s find opportunities to leverage this passion.

Be zealous in what you do – Visualize a wonderful outcome of whatever activity you are engaged in.  This will provide you the impetus to be zealous and meticulous in whatever you are engaged in. The zeal you bring to your work will always give you an edge over others for good work is always noticed and rewarded. E.g. Have you noticed who is the co worker you can safely entrust a task to? Think about why you value his work so much.

Listen to the criticism but never let it overwhelm you – Since we cannot live in isolation, it is obvious that different people will form varying opinions about us. While some will be appreciative, there would be very many who will be extremely critical. There could be others who are indifferent while some others could be openly hostile. Be aware that there could be some truth in the criticism of others, so do not ignore the negative feedback. Yet do not let criticism dampen your spirits or cloud your judgment. Take corrective action where required but stay the course. If you know yourself you can never go wrong. E.g. If Ms. J.K. Rowling believed all the 12  publishers who rejected her first Harry Potter draft, those books would never have been published nor would millions of young readers have the pleasure of reading those books nor would she have become a millionaire and celebrity. What stops you from aiming so high?

Be the person you want others to be – If we have expectations of others, we must be prepared to walk the talk. In effect, our yardsticks of excellence for others must be the same yardstick we follow for ourselves. If we set a good example, all who observe us will attempt to imitate us. If we can simply be diligent in what we do, be truthful to our conscience, be fair to others and appreciate the efforts of those around, we would be living and leaving a legacy for others to imitate and emulate. E.g if we want our children to be honest we must ensure we don’t do any dishonest act ourselves or if we want the world to be a happier place learn to be happy first. Remember Mr.M.P.Anil Kumar and the cruel joke destiny played on him; yet he left behind a legacy hard to imagine and impossible to match.

Try this

List out 5 limitations/ weakness that you believe are hampering your progress in life. Now identify a quality that you posses that could be a possible antidote for that weakness. E.g. You are lazy. Antidote could be your ability to be disciplined or your ability to be committed to your goals or it could be your fear of monetary/ reputation loss. Now use the antidote as fulcrum to overcome your laziness.

Identify 3 people who in your opinion have left a legacy behind; (one must be a person from a historical / scientific / political / social service background   ; one from your friends and acquaintances and one a former teacher / superior ) Give an example of the one sterling quality they exhibited.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Disappointments are inevitable…but you can overcome them !

Dissapointments are natural...but...

How many of you reading this feel they are always unlucky and never win be it a lottery, or a game of tambola / housie or just a lucky draw at a raffle? Disappointment is a natural corollary at the end of any such game for all those who never win and worse still miss out on winning by a whisker. There are others who seem to be very lucky but are disappointed that they never win the big stakes. Perhaps most of us see these as minor disappointments of everyday life and get over our disappointments in these situations quickly.  However, the larger disappointments come from our self set (often unrealistic) expectations; be it grades in exams, winning a match, meeting a deadline, meeting a commitment or it could be expectations related to  a large salary rise or  a promotion or worse still expectations from our children in their scholastic, personal and professional life.

One consolation that softens the pain of disappointment is the realization that everyone suffers disappointments albeit in varying measures. However, it is coping with disappointments that are a huge challenge for us.. While the techniques to cope would vary it is essential to be aware that we should not let disappointments become an excuse nor let it fester in our minds and poison our thinking and actions. Here are a couple of pointers to overcome disappointments, quickly regain our composure and motivate us to strive for something even better than what we didn’t get.

Accept disappointments as inevitable: No matter how well planned and careful one is circumstances are uncontrollable and obviously disappointments will lurk around. Escaping disappointments is not an option and accepting this reality is the first step in coping with disappointments. Eg. Flight delays can be very frustrating just as not getting reservations be it for travel or at the theater can be equally disappointing.

Put disappointments in perspective:  Well some disappointments will always be more painful than others. It is our ability to be rational and pragmatic about the disappointment that will bring equanimity into our life. E.g. Not getting a ticket for a movie could be huge disappointment if you were with a date but a flight delay could be terrible if you were to miss an important long haul connecting flight because of the delay of the first flight. In either case it is essential to reconcile to the reality and make the best of the inevitable situation you are faced with.

Seek a positive in the disappointment: To make the best of the inevitable situation you find yourself post the disappointment, force yourself to find a pleasant alternative. This needs a little imagination, a spark of creativity and a stout heart to overcome the disappointment. E.g. If stuck in a stopover town due to a delayed flight, the best option is to explore /discover the nuances of the place. If you missed out on getting tickets you alternatives could range from a surprise fine dining experience to exploring alternative entertainment options or simply going on a drive.

Focus on the many blessings you have: Pause for a moment and think of all the things that you are blessed with. Loving family, decent lifestyle, good education, freedom to pursue your dreams and the list is endless. So the disappointments you encounter are mere blips in an otherwise reasonably good life. Learn to let go of the disappointments and instead embrace the fortunes that you are blessed with.

Be aware that no disappointment can overcome your spirit: Disappointments are equivalent to the little pricks that one has to endure when romping through the woods. We never give up on our trek or hike merely because of a couple of untoward mishaps or stumbles or a scraped knee. It is our enthusiasm that props up our spirit, strengthens us to endure and motivates us to the very end. We need to realize that it is this same spirit in much larger doses that will always insulate us from giving up when faced with disappointments.

Try this:

 

How will you cope with the following disappointments?

  1. You are unable to recollect the location of an important document that you remember having kept very safely.
  2. You are in rush to catch a flight and discover that your car won’t start and you have reach the airport on time.
  3. You pick up your favorite coat and notice a large ugly stain on it.
  4. A long lost friend is visiting you and gifts you something. On opening the gift you find it is something that you craved for but it has the most terrible color that you despise immensely.
  5. You are invited to be the keynote speaker at a prestigious seminar. You have worked hard on your speech but on the day of the address, you wake up feeling feverish and with a terrible sore throat. 

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

My wish for YOU for the New Year

13-32-My wish for the New Year 2014It has been 4 years since I first started writing this blog and it has been a roller coaster ride with both highs and lows. The slow but steady increase in number of posts(485 posts), number of views (over 1,97,000), number of followers (over 1050) and the encouraging feedback from blog readers have been real highs for me. The occasional confrontation with writer’s block, the challenge of keeping up with the standards set and the gaps in feedback or slow pace of views at times have been the lows. However, each of you reading this post and particularly the followers of the blog who get the posts in their email inbox deserve my special thanks for the support and encouragement I have derived because of them.

The post today is for each of you with my hearty wishes for the New Year 2014 and beyond.

Comfort – Each day is a new day with a fresh set of challenges, problems and opportunities. Don’t let go the opportunities but should you miss them don’t brood over it too much. On the other hand if troubles seem to shadow you may you take comfort in the realization that ‘ this too shall pass’.

Smiles – They say a SMILE is a curve that sets everything straight. Go on and smile away your blues, your temporary worries and your toughest challenges. A smile is the quickest way to reach to people and to reach into your own heart and feel blissful. (Click on this link to know more about how a SMILE can make a huge difference to you http://www.poweract.blogspot.in/2010/01/smile.html )

Rainbows – After a heavy downpour we are often fascinated by the sight of the majestic rainbow in all its splendid colors. It is also believed that there is proverbial pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. So wait and seek that rainbow when things don’t go the way you want it to; perhaps you will also find more than just the rainbow and get lucky with that pot of gold.

Laughter – Laugh and the world laughs with you. Bet each of you would love to have more company, plenty of friends and definitely hoping to have a rocking time. The secret to all that is being joyful and spreading good cheer and the quick fix is simply hearty laughter.

Sunsets – There is romantic tinge to sunsets and as you watch the slow sunset in the distant horizon, the physically darkness that follows actually allows you to experience the bliss of a happy ending and would leave you with a warm feeling of accomplishment.

Hugs – Be it a hearty greeting or a moment of heartfelt sympathy, both these extreme emotions are best expressed with a hug. The touch and intimacy convey far more meaning than anything that a wordsmith can conjure up.

Beauty – Far too often our eyes seem to be riveted on the misery, dirt and squalor around us. Alas there is also ample beauty around us that we take for granted be it the tapestry of religious, cultural and ethnic diversity  or the wonders of human evolution be it in the form of dressing, culinary art, physical art, prose and poetry. Nothing beats the beauty of the natural beauty around us be it the flora and fauna, the landscape, the creatures of the world or simply our own fellow human beings. Seek and you shall find – Beauty to warm your hearts and life your spirits.

Friendships – He / she is poor who is alone, friendless and unloved. Friendships are the outcome of a social need, a commonality of understanding and respect and is the essence of human evolution. Friendships nurture social interaction, evolution of communities and personal growth.

Faith – Faith overcomes fears; after all FAITH is Finding Answers In The Heart ( Click on this link to know more about FAITH http://www.poweract.blogspot.in/2010/01/faith.html )

Confidence – You are committed to whatever you do when you have the confidence in yourself and in what you do. Confidence comes from self belief, purpose and determination.

Courage – It takes courage to accept your faults, listen to your critics and to follow your heart. With courage you can only grow better, bigger and brighter.

Patience – If you have read so far, you are blessed with patience; a virtue that will open your eyes to the wonders of new revelations and fresh opportunities.

Love – It encompasses life in its entirety. First love yourself, warts and all. Next love those around you and finally love the world around you. Guess what? What goes around comes around and you will always be ensconced in LOVE

 Try this:

  1. Find out innovative ways of using the above blessings to cheer up a close friend, a total stranger, a person in another town/ country.
  2. Use the gifts of faith, confidence, courage and patience to explore a new hobby, a new exotic place and a new technology that you have been avoiding.
  3. Prepare any one of the following a New Year card / PPT/ collage / painting / poem incorporating the elements smile, rainbow, sunset and beauty.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Disovering your real strength.

13-28- Do you know your own strengthAre there times when you felt life is unfair? Ever felt that you cannot cope any more with life? Perhaps the anger, frustration, pain and problems have at times made you question yourself if it is worth living. As of now you are reading this because you did not succumb to the pressures that could have occasionally threatened, weakened and demoralized you. Perhaps the pressures enabled you to discover your own ability to cope with the vagaries of life, made you aware of the tough and steely self belief you have and helped you find latent strengths and talents that came to the fore.

To discover yourself better think back and analyze how you responded to a vulnerable situation, understand how you coped with temptations, how you chose between alternatives, the manner in which you respond to crisis and your reactions when you are unfairly given a raw deal. This is when you discover your real strength; that comes from your core beliefs, your value system, your character and your all round personality.

Your response to a vulnerable situation.  Look back at your school days. Remember the time when either you were singled out by the teacher for some aberration committed by someone sitting near you. The teacher is unable to identify the culprit but have zoomed in on you and either accuse you or threaten you to identify the culprit. Your response should give you an idea of how and what shaped your response. Would you have responded differently today given the same circumstances?

Coping with temptations You are attending a seminar. After the break you discover that your folder and handouts are missing. It is difficult to identify who has either pinched it or mistakenly taken it. You are annoyed, irritated and a wee bit frantic. After lunch you notice another folder lying around. You are tempted to stake claim to it though you know it is not yours since the color of the folder is different but rationalize that the owner of this folder may have mistakenly taken your folder. Your response should give you an idea of how and what shaped your response. Would you have responded differently today given the same circumstances?

Choosing between alternatives Midway through an exam you are appearing for, you realize that the person sitting behind you is frantically trying to catch your attention and suggesting that you allow him/ her to copy from you answer sheet. Your response should give you an idea of how and what shaped your response. Would you have responded differently today given the same circumstances?

Response to crisis.  You are at the airport on your way to attend a cousins wedding. It is peak season and you have booked your seats months ahead. At the check in counter you notice a commotion. Your curiosity gets the better of you and you try to find out the reason for the commotion. You find a frantic individual begging for a ticket to attend his father’s funeral rites. Your response should give you an idea of how and what shaped your response. Would you have responded differently today given the same circumstances?

Reaction when given a raw dealDuring the course of the year on more than one occasion your bosses have complimented you on some exceptional performance. You are shocked when at the annual appraisal team you are given an excellent rating but not the promotion you were expecting. Worse still you find out soon after that a colleague who has also done some competent work has been given the promotion since he / she had indicated to management that they could quit if the promotion was not coming their way. Your response should give you an idea of how and what shaped your response. Would you have responded differently today given the same circumstances?

There is no crystal clear right or wrong answers to most of the circumstances/ situations described above. They are merely indicative of the type of real life situations that would force you to exercise your discretion and possibly realize your own inner strength.  There is much more of you waiting to be discovered by you… challenges, difficulties and hurt are hurdles that help you discover the real you.

Try this:

Each of us have noble intentions but when it comes to putting it into practice we painfully discover we are weak, indecisive and easily give up. The challenge for therefore is to focus on some noble personal intentions to be put into practice.

  • Try to enhance savings by 10 % each year. If you get an unexpected bonus and during the annual increments add an additional 10% of the bonus / increment to the savings.
  • Identify a charity or social cause and devote at least 5 hours a month to that cause. Increase your involvement 6 months after you put your intention into practice.
  • Find a environment friendly activity to promote personally as well as in your residential area and work place. Target to get 1 person involved in this activity every quarter.

Identify 3 passions you would love to indulge in but cannot do so right now because of financial / personal/ social circumstances. Your challenge is to put a time frame in which to achieve each and write down a time bound plan of action to achieve it. By 1st Jan 2014 this should form part of your active efforts to achieve your dream.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

The secret to happiness

13-25-Happy days are around you...

The essential condition for being happy is enjoying the moment. The problem is that our mind tends to wander around and seeks to find real and imaginary problems to dwell upon and fret and fume over. The human tendency to scan around for problems is possibly a defense mechanism to protect our future for we are the only species that uses the higher intelligence to embrace progress. In effect this means that each day we want to get ahead of the previous day and this creates in us a fear of tomorrow for it has to be better than today and yesterday. Protecting our future and planning for it is important but it must never be at the cost of failing to enjoy the better part of our life. Stress is primarily an outcome or result of our obsession with the future and is a predominantly found in the human race.

To reduce our stress it is essential that we find a way to like each moment of our life and love our life. This means we need to create/ find/ invent / be happy. The challenge is to remain happy for as long as possible and that is possible only and only when we learn to enjoy whatever we have.  Here are some ways that we can continue to be happy moment to moment.

Appreciate what you have. We tend to take for granted whatever we are blessed with and on the rare times we are deprived of some of these blessings we notice the absence and react with alarm, fear, worry and exasperation. Look back at the time you sprained your ankle or suffered from flu or the time you misplaced a valuable thing. Your attitude and behavior is symptomatic of our tendency to take the good fro granted and the unwanted as a calamity. Remember the phrase; I complained because I had not shoes until I saw a man who had no feet.

Don’t compare. Nothing disturbs our peace of mind as much as our tendency to compare whatever we have with that of others who we perceive as having something better than what we have. In many ways our inability to appreciate what we have often has its roots in our weakness to focus on what others have. Pause for a moment and think about the possibility that ‘perhaps we are blessed with just the right mix leaving us enough opportunities to aspire, perspire and inspire us to achieve and attain more’ giving us the elation of achievement and success.

Be optimistic. Problems, hindrances, failures, fears and frustrations are part of everyday life. We are given the grace to be optimistic; to be hopeful, to visualize possibilities and to find creative ways to overcome and slay the demons of our negative imagination. It is when we are optimistic that we confront our fears and stop ourselves from running away from the problems we encounter.

Seek positives. When in difficulties, pain or trouble our reaction is to alleviate the suffering. The challenge thereafter is to be calm, have a clear head and to think logically so that we not only overcome our difficulties but come out unscathed. Almost all the prisoner of war (POW) escapes can be attributed to seeking out the positives even in the most inescapable circumstances. Ask yourself if you are a POW of your making; your defeatist attitude, your weak will and/ or your inability to confront reality.

Have fun. Have you seen people in casts displaying a variety of messages written on the cast by friends and well wishers? Have you seen people with a big smile hobble on crutches to a party or come on a wheel chair to the party? Ever notice that the best jokes are the ones people tell about themselves and the embarrassing situations they found themselves in?  The ability to laugh, to have fun, to find a reason to smile is perhaps the greatest gift you can bestow yourself.

Try this:

  • Prepare a funny paragraph containing the words. Each paragraph must have 5 sentences at least and must contain 7 -10 words from the list given below. The paragraphs need not be logical but must be coherent and humorous.

Man, socks, dog, green, TV, nail, Egg, elephant, hook, water, clock, TV, bucket, Adam, Ram, Flag, blue, wheel, cycle, eat, run, scream.

  • Prepare a list (laughs that you can have) of at least 5 each of the following
  1. Jokes
  2. Limericks
  3. Comedy Movies
  4. You tube clips
  5. Cartoons
  6. Sayings / Phrases

(You are welcome to share your contribution by writing in to actspot@gmail.com. Please give your name and age along with your contribution. Select contributions ( emphasis will be on originality and quality of humor) would be featured in this blog. )

 This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Overcoming Disappointments

13-24-Dissapointments are natural...but...

Disappointments arise when outcomes do not meet expectations. As human beings we tend to brood longer over our disappointments but relish our successes fleetingly. Ask yourself how often you complaint, whine, criticize, find fault, get upset / angry, feel hurt, pass on blame, keep regretting, try to be alone/ silent etc. On the other hand how often do you smile, praise, thank, appreciate, remain enthusiastic, compliment others, be the company of others, say/ do something positive spontaneously etc. Your honest answers would give you a clue to how you cope with disappointments which are unavoidable but never unmanageable.

Even if we are optimists and have a positive attitude we can still be disheartened and disillusioned by major disappointments. If we are pessimistic and have a tinted outlook then it becomes imperative that we find ways and means to cope with the disappointments that we would encounter off and on.

Here are a few strategies to cope with disappointments.

It can’t get worse. Imagine you failed in your exams. You lose a year now. It has happened; but now you can honestly tell yourself that it is the worst possible outcome but it can’t get worse than this. Once you make this profound discovery moving on with life becomes relatively much easier than brooding over the why it happened; if only I studied more; perhaps I should have taken a chance and cheated and the numerous such thoughts that keep swimming in your head.

Thank god it is only this much. Recently a family member came home way past midnight and gently broke the news that he met with an accident. Obviously you are rattled and then shocked to see the person swaddled in bandages. Once you get over the initial shock the next natural progression is to seek more information about what happened all the while berating the person for being careless and irresponsible. Once we have calmed down and get hold of ourselves we rationalize that thank god it wasn’t worse. From then on we are able to handle the shock and disappointment with more pragmatism and acceptance.

Ok so how do I limit the damage? You are frantically searching for an important document and to your horror and terrible disappointment you just can’t seem to locate it. Your panic is matched only by the disconcerting feeling that you are heading for disaster. You search every nook and corner, you can rummage through every drawer and cupboard, you vent your frustration and then fall on your knees seeking divine intervention; alas all in vain. The quicker you get hold of your emotions the better the chances of finding an alternative solution that will help limit the damage perhaps even find an alternative solution.

What is good about the situation? Your team has played and excellent match in which you dominated the opponents and yet you lost the game thanks to a freak goal by the opposition. It is hard to come to terms with such heartbreaking disappointments. The results can be overturned; the missed chances cannot be retrieved; a blame game won’t help. A debriefing by the coach however can turn up a surprising number of useful and invaluable insights about the game. The mistakes made, the attitude and approach of the players, the chinks in the opponents armor than can be exploited next time around, the difference in play in both periods of the game; all of these are more seriously imbibed when the bitterness of disappointment is more acute.

Nothing can overwhelm me. You reach the airport only to be told that your flight has been cancelled and your connecting flights and holiday plans have in simply gone for a toss in a jiffy. Anger, frustration, helplessness, sadness, panic seem to engulfing you. Your mind is in a whirl, you can’t focus and you are in a tizzy. Quickly take deep breaths and calm yourself. While asking the reason for the flight cancellation may be a natural instinctive reaction, wasting time delving into it would be both fruitless and frustrating. Instead, focus on outlining the alternatives to salvage the situation. Take proactive action to implement your plans and be pragmatic about your subsequent actions.

This too shall pass. Pause and think; how many disappointments have actually
ruined your life or brought it to a complete standstill. The fact that you are 
reading this is proof that you are hale and hearty despite the many 
disappointments that you would have faced in your life. The reality of life
mandates that each of us will have triumphs (success) and disasters
(disappointments)  and the trick to overcome disappointment is to remember
Rudyard Kipling’s lines in his poem IF 
If you can meet with triumph and disaster 
And treat those two imposters just the same;

For neither success not failure is permanent… for this too shall pass. 

Try this:

  1. You overhear your best friend criticizing you.
  2. You were hauled up by your superior / school management for an aberration done by someone else and no amount of pleading your innocence can cut any ice with them.
  3. You encounter a flat tyre on deserted stretch of the highway.
  4. You press the buzzer during the tie breaker of a quiz final and discover that the right answer is on the tip of your tongue but alas you are unable to articulate it on time.
  5. You go to highly rated restaurant and to you horror the food is awful and disappointing.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

In the midst of chaos find peace…

13-21-in the midst of storms

The universal truth is that life will always have up’s and downs. It is our ability to be grounded when we experience highs and cope with the frustrations of the lows in our life that plays a significant part in the success we achieve and more importantly the happiness we experience. Managing to be grounded when lady luck and success embrace us is relatively much more easier than battling the frustrations, the self doubts and the anger that follows failures, ill luck and negativity. The post today gives you insights into coping with those terrible moments that shake our belief in our own self, makes us feel victimized and sometimes push us to the brink of a chasm called depression, with suicidal thoughts not too far behind.

Be objective. Perhaps the most important cause of our frustrations is our inability to be objective about events/ happenings/ situations which we perceive to be detrimental to our interest or one that is a failure or something that we would desperately want to avoid. Objectivity comes out of being balanced, not being impulsive, avoiding panic and accepting the reality. E.g. You have carefully planned a holiday and everything is in place but alas on the day of travel the flight is cancelled. It is only objectivity that can bring sanity and some realistic solution.

See Positives When things don’t go as per our plans our disgust, annoyance and frustration see only the consequences never the possible positives. It is essential to be objective if one has to see the positives for often our judgment is clouded by our negative emotions. It is also possible that you have to think beyond the normal to connect the dots and see the positives. E.g. recently my flight was cancelled and while it did upset and annoy me, I knew I was short of time to take control of the situation. After prolonged discussions with the airline staff, they agreed to fly to me to an alternate destination and give me a connecting flight next morning. I did lose a day in the process but soon realized that the overnight stop over at the alternate destination gave me an opportunity to visit a friend and his family and offer my condolences in person on the loss of their son in a tragic accident.

Seek help. When flustered and irritated it often helps if one can vent it out or better still share it with a close friend or family. In the first place they help us let out steam and their words of comfort have a calming effect on us. Often they are much more objective in their responses and they would be able to suggest alternatives that would often escape us. E.g. When my flight was cancelled the airlines did not offer an accommodation and it was up to me to make my own arrangements. While I did try to evaluate options, I also rang up a close friend who often traveled to that city. In a jiffy he gave me the contact details of an excellent place close to the airport which was known only to a select few.

Don’t freeze. While meditation and slow breathing are the most popular ways to calm one’s self, the process particularly the former requires some skill set/ technique whilst the latter demands a fair bit of patience. Both techniques are effective but when pushed to the edge, the most effective technique in my view is action. Movement and activity will ensure your mind is distracted from the problem, if done with a purpose the activity will be focused on positive outcomes and for sure you will get an alternative solution. In some corporate offices there are punch me bags kept specifically to allow employees vent their frustrations by punching the bags. Even a walk in the park can be exceedingly helpful to calm nerves and maintain equilibrium. Ideally though diverting the mind to finding solutions and acting on the responses would give one a sense of purpose and bring one a step closer to finding a solution thus liberating the mind and body from the tensions they were subject to. E.g. When my flight was cancelled the airlines offered a full refund but by being calm I realized that it was perhaps the worst option for my objective was to reach the destination. Last minute tickets would cost me an arm and a leg and so I continued to engage the airlines to offer alternatives. Persistence and conscious engagement helped find a more acceptable solution as opposed to taking up their initial offer of full refund, which would neither solve my problem nor let me have peace of mind for quite a while.

I have deliberately used the same situation of  a missed flight  in each of the examples given above, so that readers can be sure that by and large the technique works in all crisis and chaotic situations.

Try this:

Apply the above 4 points to the following situations and find your own responses

  1. Your exam results have been announced and you are shocked to note that you have been declared  failed.
  2. You are all set to travel with your family and just 2 days before you are diagnosed with typhoid and strictly prohibited from travelling by your doctor.
  3. You are on a holiday and suddenly discover that your wallet is lost.
  4. You have had a serious showdown with your best friend and he/she has stopped all communication with you despite your best efforts to have a reconciliation.

How will you respond to the following crisis in your life.

  • You are to meet a very important client and the meeting has been scheduled after a lot of persistent effort on your part. Whilst on your way, you receive and urgent call from your close friend who requests you to rush to the hospital where your friends nephew has been admitted following an accident. Your friend is out of town and hence the request.
  • You have done excellent work during the year and each quarter you have been commended by the management during the quarterly reviews. You are sure you are in line for a promotion and a handsome increase in salary. You are shocked and confused when the management offers you a more than expected increment but declines you a justly deserved promotion. More shockingly you find out that a colleague has been give a promotion and you are convinced that you deserved the promotion more than the other person who was promoted.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Launching yourself

13-9- One step back 2 forward

It is that time of the year when the exam fever is at its peak and both students and parents are in a tizzy coping with the stress of doing well in the exams. The real stress actually comes a wee bit later as the day of the results draws near. While for some there could be jubilation, for a fair amount of people there could be dejection but the vast majority would be plagued by a sinking feeling that the outcome could have been or should have been better. An analysis would possibly reveal that an overwhelming majority are disappointed that the outcomes fell short of their expectations. In effect just about everyone seems to think that the academic pursuits have actually dragged them back or atleast impeded them in the race to a successful future.

The scene with the adults is no different. On one hand they seem to be dragged down by the weight of propping up their wards to excel, they also are bogged down by the pressure to attain personal success professionally, financially, personally and socially. Many a time, success seems elusive, the goals seem distant and the pressure becomes overwhelming. The collective weight of balancing personal expectations, professional growth and domestic bliss seem to be huge load to manage. Often we are tempted to throw in the towel and give up; our spirits are drooping and the rewards seem unappetizing.

Yet it is at the very nadir that one must dig his /her heels in, take a deep breath and with faith and hope launch a herculean effort. Be it an arrow, a trigger or a shotput; to get results we need to take that vital pull back to get the momentum to hit the mark. Take a look at a pole vaulter and notice the sharp arch of the pole brought about by the weight of the individual before the momentum and the technique dramatically enables the pole valuter to go much higher than the pole and safely cross over the barrier. The subtle message is that one often needs to take one step back before one can take two steps forward.

Success is often like a game of snakes and ladders. There are times when we get lucky and climb up faster but many a time we get gobbled up by the snake and come right down. Do we stop playing the game every time we get gobbled by a snake? The challenge in real life is not to let the snakes, be it poor academics or a personal handicap or poor self esteem or financial setbacks or a colossal blunder, become an excuse to give up.

Try this:

  1. Go to a long jump pit and stand at the edge and jump. Have 3 tries and measure the best effort. Now walk back 10 steps and then run down and jump and measure the distance. You can be sure the latter effort where you actually walked back, away from the pit and then gave it your all gave you superlative jump.
  2. Find out the personal limitations / failures that the following overcame before they achieved success
  • Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Helen Keller
  • B. S. Chandrasekhar
  • Walt Disney
  • Tapishwar Narain Raina

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com