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Archive for the ‘Imagination’ Category

125 -Dance of lifeThis is perhaps an ideal time to look back and reflect on how well we enjoyed the music and dance of the year gone by. It is not that life does not bring with it a fair share of sadness, pain and hurt but what we must not overlook are the joys, the happiness and the blessings that one has been showered with. The best way to judge how the year gone by has changed us is by answering just one question ‘Did I feel / experience a positive change in me ?’ If the answer is yes you know that the dance of life was an exhilarating experience. If the answer is NO then you need to practice your steps again in the coming year for the dance of life goes on and you need to sync your steps with the music that is played.

A look at life from the prism of the various elements of dance would enable us to better appreciate how well we have grasped the ‘dance of life

Space – Whether it is a ball room dance or a solo performance, central to dance is the use of the available space. Similarly in life, we need to give space to our relationships no matter who the other person is, how close or distant they are and one must be able to adjust with those around. Children especially need to be given ample space to pursue their independence in thought word and deed. That is when they learn to think for themselves, take decisions, learn from their mistakes and grow in confidence. Like a kite that we fly, we shall not let go of the string completely but will allow the kite to soar.

Timing – Every good dance is in sync to the beat being played. Similarly every moment of our life must be in sync with the priorities that we accord. So prioritizing our goals is a critical component of a fulfilling life. We need to learn to pause and listen, we need to know when we have to simply let go and encourage and most of all we need to know when to keep quiet and not interfere.

Movement – Like dance, life is a constant movement with varied pace. Sometimes time flies, other times it is slow and dreary. Yet the movement is what makes the dance wholesome and meaningful. Learn to go with the flow; don’t thwart the ebb. At times life can make us dizzy with the speed with which it takes us along. Other times the pace is woefully boring but allows us time to catch our breath. You cannot pause unless it is a demand of the rhythm. So pay attention to the music, the pace and beat. Adjust your movements to gel with the moment.

Patterns – Like any dance, life follows certain patterns and repetitive movements. Each dance has its own set of patterns that gives it an allurement for the eye. Your life too should adopt a pattern that makes it a treat for those around. Your personality would influence those patterns but that does not mean you cannot make the patterns of your life vibrant, soothing, engaging, encompassing and exciting. There could be awkward traits that you would have to overcome, there could be enormous potential that you would have leverage and there is always abundance of love that you can dish out more. The patterns you form in life emerge from the choices you make every day, every moment and to every life around you.

Grace – The beauty of the dance lies in the grace with which it is performed. The same dance performed on another day could fall short of expectations or could be mesmerizing. Similarly the challenge in the dance of life is to attempt to make each day better than the previous day both for yourself and for those around you. All that you do must be because you care, you enjoy doing it and because you believe you make a difference to everyone by the way you lead your life. Some days could be disappointing, painful and forgetful but most days must be exhilarating, enjoyable and fulfilling. Add a dash of sunshine, joy and self belief every morning and the dance of life will always be movement of grace; a joy to watch, behold and experience.

Try these

  1. Make 15-25 small chits. On each one write a name of a random person who you interact with. It could be a family member, a colleague, a neighbor, the liftman, the house help etc. Put it in a big box and pick 12 chits at random. In order of the name you picked up, you have to ensure your dance (interactions) with that person for each coming month is made more exciting for that person through your words, action, deeds.
  2. List out just one personal goal for yourself for each of the following aspects of your life
  • Personal growth
  • Financial security
  • Professional progress
  • Personal passion
  • Learning a new skill

Just focus on the above goals in the coming year and track your progress each month on each of the above goals you have set for yourself.

 This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

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39- Embrace yourself and be liberatedYour relationship with yourself and thereafter with the world around you, hinges on your ability to embrace yourself completely. Once you learn to accept yourself as you are, warts, moles, dimples,  and more, you will immediately realize that you could not have been created more perfect. At that point when you look around, you will realize that it is not just you, but everyone around   who has been created perfect but most of them have yet to make that one key observation or realization. Once you embrace yourself, three things happen that let you experience freedom from all anxiety, worry and tensions.

You begin to value your blessings – A lot of what you take did not like about yourself will now suddenly begin to feel valuable.  Assume you don’t like your face or your smile or your height or your frame but then when you start loving yourself you will view each of these with love. That is when you will understand that what you are blessed with is what makes you an unique individual, someone special to those around and someone who can with that crooked smile or fat frame still light up the lives of those around.

You stop comparing yourself with others – When you begin to love yourself you are never going to compare yourself with anyone else. You begin to appreciate and value your own personality, your strengths, your abilities and above all your uniqueness. There is no superiority or inferiority complex that will trouble you; there will not be any competition with anyone else other than your own potential and you will value every bouquet and brickbat that comes your way for it is proof of what you have achieved or can achieve.

You realize that you can do much with your life that you have been gifted – Going about daily chores including doing your mandated work is something no one can avoid. A person who embraces himself discovers that in addition he/ she can contribute much more by utilizing his/ her talents, gifts and abilities. It could be giving back to society or it could be through nurturing a latent talent or even a simple act of listening to others and spending time with people who crave for attention. The realization comes because you know that you will be accepted by others as you are and hence you find both the zest and the urge to make the best of your new realization.

It also enables you to fine tune yourself by

Changing your attitude – When you embrace yourself, you become less complaining, less critical, more appreciative, more tolerant and definitely more humane in though words and deeds. Your attitude is more open, liberal and welcoming. You see things from the prism of possibilities and positivity. You seek solutions and avoid excuses.

Believing in your potential – Your self-belief will let you test your limits. Your potential will translate into and practical involvement. You will never limit yourself. Instead you will attempt to discover new facets about yourself. Perhaps there is a latent poet within you; possibly  a passionate adventurer ; maybe a compassionate self yet to be put to the test. You will explore possibilities and your potential.

Gives you the courage to explore beyond – It is when you truly believe in your uniqueness and embrace yourself that you will dare to move beyond your comfort zone. You will take up challenges, be ready to test your limits, pick on a random praise from a well wisher and make it real. You may even take risks that you would never have dared like quitting your job to pursue your passion or giving up urban life to experience rural life.

The possibilities are immense; you have only to believe you are butterfly, love yourself as you are when in the cocoon and then break out of your cocoon. 

Try these

  1. Write a story or make a PPT or a short film of the special moments of your life and how you have journeyed with success so far. You are guaranteed to discover new facets about yourself that remained hidden so far.
  2. Read the poem The Psalm of Life (https://tinyurl.com/yc88ck56 ) by H W Longfellow. Choose one verse which appeals most to you. Analyze how and why it appeals so much to you.
  3. Make a list of 5-9 things that you want to do but haven’t seriously attempted yet. Now put a deadline to each and ensure you manage to give at least 2 of the items in the list a serious try within the next six months.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

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38- Faliure is not the opposite of successOnce we can orient our thinking to appreciate the tremendous insight provided by the above quote, chances are, we will never be apprehensive or fearful of failure. Failure has been stigmatized, it has been projected as the antonym of success and it has been the one word that every individual has been cautioned to keep away from. The reality is that failure has merits but unfortunately the word failure has been demonized and the merits cast away.  A glimpse of how failure is an essential part of success is shared below.

Provides painful lessons grasped quickly – While success is craved by everyone, the lessons from success are not as strongly ingrained in the mind as much as lessons learned from failure. Failure could be a painful outcome despite a good effort so it hurts more. However, it is the lessons learnt  from failure that enables one to reorient ones thinking, enables one to be creative, helps change ones approach to a problem and remains a constant reminder on how to avoid previous mistakes so as to achieve success. E.g. if one was tardy in studies the fail result in the report card and its consequences would be a good reminder to be more diligent in studies.

It is a hard rock on which one can built something strong – Failure provides one a strong rock like foundation to build on simply because one has to start again but this time one would be more alert, agile and astute. The pain and shame of failure is always a bitter pill to swallow.  Hence next time around one would invest time, energy and effort very cautiously and prudently so as to ensure one does not fitter away one’s resources.  At the same time failure highlights the chinks in one’s armor, helps one realize the importance of going back to the drawing board to work on a more robust plan that can succeed.  E.g. Steve Jobs life provides you a perfect script of success being tempered by failure and subsequent bigger success.

It acts as speed breakers on the high way of success – Success is often very heady and that can lead to reckless behavior. A failure is a wonderful speed breaker that tempers one’s exuberance, helps slow down ones pace to suit our temperament and above all ensures that we pause to refresh, recharge and resist the temptation to be over ambitious and take reckless risks. E.g. look at the monumental failures of once billionaires who took dubious means to multiply their wealth till their failures were exposed

It sensitizes one to be more humane and pragmatic The true measure of success is how one can have a positive influence on the environment around. Yet many equate success with wealth, influence and power alone.  Failure helps one realize his / her human failings, makes one look around in a more humane way and then channelizes success for the larger good of society. E.g. The spurt in voluntary CSR initiatives of corporates or the philanthropic initiatives of the rich are an acknowledgement of their belief that they have failed to use their wealth for the larger good of mankind and they are now making efforts to correct that.

It is just one extreme end of the continuum called life– Success is one end of a continuum called life. At the other end is failure. Seen differently they are two sides of a coin. You cannot relish success with out a taste of failure. One can better appreciate the joys of success only when one has tasted the bitterness of failure. Winning a game with no opponents will never give you an euphoria as much as winning games beating tough opponents. It is because failure exits that quest for success becomes more challenging and enjoyable. E.g. Ask Usain Bolt how much more valuable his gold medals from previous Olympics are, especially after his relative failure in his last races.

Try these

  • List out three of your major failure and the lessons each failure taught you.
  • List out your three major successes   and identify any failure that had a part to play in each of those successes.
  • What is the best compliment you ever got? Can you identify 3 reasons that made the compliment really worthwhile?
  • What are the areas of concern for you where you fear failure? What steps are you taking to ensure success in those areas?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

 You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

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27-30 Jul 17-An open mindIf we look at children playing you would notice that they are excited by the little things that they discover for the first time. The ants moving around busily, the joy of jumping in some puddles, the flight of the birds, the freedom when on a swing and the up and down of the sea saw. Their minds are filled with wonder at the fun that is in abundance around, at the variety of the fun they can have and they are joyous at discovering something new.  Yet this very same child, as he or she grows up begins to learn,  most of it by rote and thereafter things become a blind belief. If the text book says it must be a fact, if the teachers, parents or elders say something, reasoning would have little scope to penetrate the mind and if the individual has firsthand experience, that would be the ultimate truth. The wonders that once enabled a free and open mind are now shackled by the chains of dogma and blind faith.

The only way to regain and retain the joys of wonderment are by keeping an open mind that will allow all varieties of influences to come and go without it being prejudged, prejudiced or passed over. This can be best done in the following ways

Seek new experiences – Move out of your comfort zone if you have to experience something different and new. It could be as simple as trying out trying out a different cuisine or experimenting with a new hairstyle. Alternatively it could be extremely challenging like attempting to overcome a fear or taking on a dangerous dare. Your mind would feel the exhilaration only when you open  it up to take on new possibilities.

Find positives in sour experiences – Not every experience would be pleasant. Sometimes the experiences would be painful or it could be embarrassing or it could provide a rude jolt. Train your mind to find something positive in the failure so that the experience becomes worthwhile and has provided you a new learning.

Question more – While one cannot try and question all that is taught, where one has serious doubts raise questions. The objective must be to ensure that you are fully convinced about the matter and not embrace it because of a blind belief. Disruptive technology and disruptive business models are nothing but answers to questions that asked about existing beliefs.

Have an independent view – You are an unique individual. Your individuality is highlighted by your ability to stand out in a crowd. This is best expressed by asking probing questions, articulating / expressing yourself even if it means going against the majority. Stand by your convictions.

Embrace change – Since change is the only constant, embrace change whole heartedly. Change is nothing but moving from the existing to creating a new paradigm. Change can be disruptive, frightening, revolutionary and overwhelming. Make change a friend and you will discover possibilities that you never ever imagined. It will shatter your existing beliefs and instead transport you into a land of wonderment.

Try these

  • Go to Youtube and check out some of the TV talent shows to get a flavor of what possibilities mean.
  • List out the five major technological changes that you have had to cope with, in the past five years.
  • Outline three bitter experiences and a valuable lesson you learned from it.
  • What is the best gift/ present you ever got in your life. Why do you think it is special?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

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7-12-feb-17-listen-to-the-guruTime and time again, we are admonished that we do not listen. In any communication lecture, you would invariably be told that of all the skills of communication the most vital one is the art of listening. The trouble is, almost all our life we have ended up as listeners and there is a certain amount of boredom, lack of motivation and prejudice against the speakers and or topics, that we have developed over the years. Part of the reason can be attributed to ineffective teachers who bored us to tears, part of the reason could be that we were forced into listening to boring lectures on boring subjects and the rest of the problem could be attributed to sheer indifference we have developed over the years. Criticism whether from parents, teachers, friends, well wishers, colleagues or bosses (especially at appraisal time) and worse of all from the spouse, have just hardened us to pay a deaf year to the feedback received. All in all, over the years, we have become indifferent, immune and largely deaf to any most forms of communication especially those that we dislike, disapprove or dread.

However, it is never too late to change and begin afresh.  Bear these facts in mind when focusing on listening. The first thing to remember is that listening is not a passive activity but an activity one must actively engage in. This means we need to take the effort of listening. The next thing to keep in mind is that when listening all our senses are engaged. While the ears absorb the spoken word, every other sense also absorbs the signals relevant to them. Hence any form of distraction be it noise, smell, weather changes, movement etc. influence the quality of our listening.  The third and most important element of listening is to understand the essence of listening; which is wanting to hear. Unless we want to hear, find a motivation to hear, pay attention to the entire communication and not be selective in our listening, we could misunderstand, partially understand, miss out on key information or interpret the communication conveniently.

Once we begin to appreciate and adopt good listening skills the process of our personal improvement and growth would be enhanced dramatically. This is because we learn to value the lessons, however unpleasant or critical that we interpret from the communication signals received from around us. We also begin to value and respect our strengths by listening to the positive and encouraging responses we get. The value we derive from listening is maximized when we explore opportunities, dare to take risks, begin to change, learn to appreciate and never get discouraged.

Remember that the word LISTEN comprises of the same alphabets that form the word SILENT. So the more silently you absorb the communication that is around the better your listening skills. Make the world your GURU by simply listening to everyone and everything around. Absorb, learn, implement, change !

Try these:

  • What is your favorite joke that you enjoy sharing with friend’s. Did you notice that it is how keenly the other person listens to you, that makes the joke effective. More importantly the joke may have something absurd and illogical that actually triggers the punch of the joke. Conventional listening, where logic and order are essential do not trigger the response as much as the non auditory visualization does.
  • Here are some non auditory listening challenges
  1. Take a standard deck of cards and find out the only one eyed king in it. Also note the subtle differences between the Jacks as also the four different queens in the deck.
  2. Ask a friend to prepare a bag full of assorted articles. Without seeing the articles but by merely putting your hand in the bag and feeling the articles try and identify each of them.
  3. Blindfold yourself and ask a friend to hand over various currency notes into your hand. Identify the denomination of those notes.
  4. How often have you entered your house, smelled the food being cooked and decided what kind of a meal to expect?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

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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

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37-look-againEvery one wishes to have a smooth, peaceful and happy life. However, the wonder of life is in its unpredictability, its constant change and the contrasting emotions that spice up life. Like the varied delicacies that we savor everyday, which is a mix of sweet, sour, hot, cold, spicy, bland, delicious, ugh, life helps us experience a wide variety of feelings, emotions, joys and pains. Obviously, given a choice we would prefer to experience only the emotions that appeal to us, those that we enjoy and relish. The challenge then for us is to find those hidden emotions within the moment that we experience particularly when we are distraught, hurt, pained and emotionally drained. To do that we need to look again and search for what we want to feel.

Seek the good in the bad – So you got fired from the job or your boss has just given you are earful and a warning. Hurts terribly, you become fearful, you want to erase the memory of it. Yet the hurt keeps echoing in your mind. If you pause and try to calmly relook the situation making a conscious effort to focus on what is good about the situation you could realize that there are collateral benefits in the situation. Perhaps they just nudged you to do what you always wanted to do; quit and find a new job or begin a new venture. Maybe you realized that your performance was slipping because you were bored in your job and now you are forced to find new opportunities. Maybe you were already planning alternatives but not finding the time to tie up all the loose ends and the sudden turn of events has now given you ample time to finalize your plans faster and move on.

Find something happy in the sadness you encounter – May be you lost a loved one or flunked an exam or your relationship is collapsing. Not the best of times. You are overwhelmed by the sudden turn of events that are now not just painful but the reality is a nightmare that won’t go away. Pause again and try to visualize it from a more positive angle. Perhaps the person who passed away was spared pain and agony; maybe the exam failure was expected but now you know what you did wrong and correct yourself; maybe it is best that the relationship is ending without more acrimony and ill will.

Discover some gain in your pain – Did you lose your wallet or credit cards? Maybe somebody rammed your car and damaged it? Did you hard disk crash and with it your data vanished in a jiffy. Painful no doubt but it is possible that there is some good coming from it too. Look again and search for the gain in the pain you just went through. Maybe you just spend a huge amount using the cash in your wallet so fortunately the loss of the wallet happened after that or you would have lost a lot of money. Perhaps you car need an make over and the accident has grounded you now but the insurance company would settle it now for you. Quite possible that there was a lot of junk in your hard disk and you are now spared the effort of painfully going through each file before deleting or organizing it. Yes there is some gain in every pain; look again for it.

Focus on what makes you grateful not hateful – So you got criticized at appraisal time and you hate your boss for it. Did you just get a feedback from your doctor stating that you have tested positive for some aliment and now you are constantly asking yourself ‘why me’? You find something that you desperately wanted on the online portal but just when you are about to pay you realize that the dimensions of the product is not what you want and that is the only piece available.  You hate your boss, you don’t want to meet your doctor anytime soon and you hate that website that just broke your heart. Look at the events from the filter of positivity. There would be plenty to be grateful for. Now that you have a feedback from the boss, however unflattering it may be, there could be some truth in it and you have a reference point to begin to change. If the feedback from the boss is in your view distorted and not true, maybe it is time you looked for another job opportunity. The doctor is just a messenger of the truth and perhaps he is also the savior who can suggest an appropriate course of action. Did you just save some money by not buying what you longed for or better still you may find something even better later.

When hurt/ pained/ bitter pause. Re-look the situation from a filter of ‘so what is good about the situation’ and suddenly life would be much more joyous and immense possibilities open up to you.

Try these:

  • List out the 5 most painful experiences you have had in your life. Identify one good thing about each of the said experience/situation.
  • List out 5 frequent criticisms that you are accused of by family/ friends / colleagues/ bosses / teachers. Is there justification for those criticisms? What are you doing to rectify / remedy the situation?
  • Make a list of 5 people / personalities who you dislike/ disapprove of. Can you outline 2 points about each of them that you appreciate / respect them for.
  • Name 3 adjectives that apply to your positive qualities and 3 adjectives that describe your negative qualities.  So what is your action plan to eliminate those negative adjectives?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

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