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Archive for the ‘Perceptions’ Category

24- 8 Jul 17- Create your own rainbowWith the monsoons already arriving, most days seem like Monday’s; dull, gloomy and too tempting to laze around in bed. Yet, it is time to get up and get going and the process is just a tad too boring and uninspiring. Just as the wonders of the rainbow appear in the monsoon, await the rainbow each day and there would perhaps also be a pot of gold at the end of it to lure you to energetically look forward to each day.

Look for things that brighten the day – it could be the chirping of the birds, the sunlight that is streaming in, the laughter of children playing, the pealing of the temple and/or church bells. The key is to look for things that make you happy, contented and peaceful. It is a proactive responsibility that you must take on in order to change your own world.

See the variety of positives that you are blessed with – Make a conscious effort to over look  the hurt, the pain, the sadness of the past and instead focus on the blessings you have been bestowed. Good health tops the list, financial security, a loving world of family and friends, the comfort of a blessed home perhaps and a secure job too maybe.

Smile, forgive, listen, appreciate, thank – This is such an easy formula to memorize; a tough one to put in practice but the easiest to embrace once you have consciously adopted it. Each of it helps you exhale the toxic within and inhale the pure clean emotions.

Embrace love, laughter, hope and faith – Just as a good diet and exercise is a choice you make, add a heap full of love, a ton of laughter, perennial hope and unwavering faith to your daily mantra. You will find yourself empowered, optimistic and energetic to make your presence felt in the world and to make a positive difference around you.

Spend time with family, nature, self – Since we are social animals, we need to connect with other,  the world around and with ourselves. Spend time with family and friends. Spread good cheer and goodwill amongst them. They would seek to spend more time with you. Nature helps us embrace the spectrum of life; the flora and fauna, the sheer variety of wildlife and the beauty of the hills and valleys, the rivers and the seas, the changing seasons. Spend time thinking, reflecting and connecting to inner self. Never forget you are world yourself; filled with emotions, thoughts, feelings and passion.

Find silence despite the noise, find order despite the chaos and discover peace within despite the turbulence around –  Life is full of noise, chaos and turbulence. In our journey through life, we must be able to filter out and choose everything that would make our journey more pleasant, comfortable and enjoyable. Learn to enjoy silence; then you will master the art of finding it despite the noise around. Like getting through a maze, look hard at the chaos around; anger, frustration, hurt are some  feelings that you need to get past before you get out of the maze and reach peace, tranquility and bliss.

Look back with fondness, look forward with hope and be awake in the present Every day there must be something pleasant to reminiscence about, a goal set to give meaning and purpose to each day and one must make each moment count by being mentally and physically alert and active.

Notice how you have created a beautiful rainbow for yourself. The success, satisfaction, happiness, contentment and the peace that you get is the pot full of gold at the end of your rainbow.

Try these

  • List out 3- 5 colors that you like.  Look around you and for each color you chose, write down at least 2 objects having that color. Did you notice the color of those objects earlier. Do you notice the rainbow of colors around you?
  • Sit with your eyes closed for 5 minutes. Identify the various noises around you. Also imagine the aroma of your favorite food. Can you feel the rainbow of myriad sounds and aroma that you normally take for granted.

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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20- 4 June17 -A great relationship

If you look at the friendships you have made over the many years of your life, what stands out is the fact that you have and equation with your friends which is often very ironical. There are things about your friend that you love and that is the reason for the bonding and yet there are habits/ mannerisms/ behavior / style of your friend that you dislike, possibly abhor and yet you overlook them. Friendships thrive on these differences and how individuals manage to reconcile these juxtapositions holds the key to endearing and enduring relationships.

It is possible that in many relationships it is differences between individuals is what triggers attention to each other but ultimately it is the similarities that bring about a confluence of appreciative emotions. In most cases though, it is the similarities in thought and approach that helps bonding and the respect for differences cements these bonds. Excellent relationships are all about managing these juxtapositions.

Good relationships are cemented stronger if both the appreciation of similarities and the respect for differences are expressed; the former more vigorously the latter more diplomatically. The latter is a tad tougher to express for it always carries a possibility of being misunderstood or being seen as a reproach and hence viewed as an indictment. This can bring about a wedge in relationships and hence has to be expressed very selectively and cautiously.  The differences are accentuated in criticisms, puns, sarcasm and disagreements. Hence it is important to be aware of the potential lethal effects of using any of the above in words or deeds.

Honesty in the relationship ensures there is greater understanding. However, brutal honesty can be damaging. Disagreements and differences of opinion are essential to retain the individuality of the people in a relationship. It is the individuality of the parties in a relationship that makes the communication, the interaction and the engagement in a relationship unique and interesting. The similarities between two individuals is what cements the relationship for there is a commonality of understanding, purpose and respect born out of appreciating the commonalities in each other.

Try these

  1. What are your three strengths that you think your friends appreciate in you? What are your three traits you think others find it hard to reconcile with or do not appreciate in you?
  2. What are the similarities and differences you note in the following people
  • Your siblings / cousins
  • Your three friends at work
  • Your three colleagues with whom you bond easily.
  • Your three best friends
  • Your classmates in school/ college with whom you meet up occasionally

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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13- 28 Mar 17 -Shadows have no colorThe image today has varied interpretations and perhaps it would also make us aware of how we can get in touch with our own self. It is also the first image in this blog without any words etched on it and hence I am free to interpret it my way. I am sure you too can discover new meanings in it too. Make your life colorful !

When I say hello to myself I discover me. This is perhaps the most obvious interpretation of the picture. In reality we rarely pause to take a deep look at answering questions like, Who am I? What do I seek? Where do I want to go? How can I change and become even more effective? Pausing occasionally to reflect about one’s own journey through life and the way ahead would often be invigorating, stimulating and eye opening. You could discover latent passions, uncover flaws that limited your potential and allow you to appreciate the blessings in your life.

My emotions help me touch myself – You shadow does not define you nor does it uphold you. It is an illusionary appendage that is neither harmful not beneficial. The shadow cannot reflect your inner core. It just outlines the exterior and that to, a distorted image depending on the light. For you to really understand yourself and touch your inner self, you need to understand and appreciate your emotions. Your feelings your sensitivity, your mettle have to be dug out from within you by introspection, observation, listening and interpretation. Perhaps you also have to realign your attitude, behavior and actions to get the best out of your physical and emotional potential.

I need to reach out and touch another – My shadow can fall on another but make no difference to the other person. If I want to touch another person, I will have to make the effort to reach out and touch him/ her. My shadow in fact begins from a point in my physical self; yet I am neither conscious about it nor do I give it any importance. The same is true about my shadow that touches around without them even noticing it. Yet when I stop and pay attention to others, when I listen to them, when I talk and share my thoughts and feelings I can get responses that matter to me and them.  I have a responsibility to reach out and have a positive influence on those around me.

Shadows reflect an outline; I reflect my life – A shadow just takes the form without any depth. It is my life that I lead, that projects the real me. My values, my upbringing, my education, my attitude, my behavior, my strength of character are all displayed in full measure by the way I lead my life. I would be judged (correctly or wrongly) by others by the example I set and the personality I reflect my real self in my interactions. Ironically the shadow that follows me everywhere is just a uni-dimensional projection of my physical self and even that is distorted.  When I say hello to my shadow, I am just making myself aware that there is a multi faceted individual within me that no shadow can do justice to. It also is my way of realizing that there are hues of grey within me that I need to paint brighter. I am responsible for who I am.

In the end thou art just a form but… – This is a chilling reminder that the shadow is all that you are. No color, no emotions, no attachments just a form that you can neither touch nor feel nor avoid. Yet, the form cannot be visible without a physical you and the power of light. As long as you are alive you are duty bound to make the best of your life and the light around; be it family, friends, colleagues or simply the presence of nature around you. The challenge for you is to prove Shakespeare wrong  when he said ‘ the evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft interned with their bones’.

Don’t let your shadow define you; let your life be your epitaph long after you are interned.

Try these:

  • Try and write your own epitaph. It will give a purpose and meaning to your life.
  • Choose 3-5 sayings or proverbs that you can make it the bedrock of your life.
  • Click on the following links to see how people creatively use the power of shadows. Perhaps you too can attempt to do something creative in a similar way.

http://tinyurl.com/m25ywpo

http://tinyurl.com/mkd8bd5

 Identify two special qualities that endear the following people to you

  • Your parents/ siblings / a special family member
  • Your two best friends
  • Your two favorite teachers / bosses / colleagues
  • Your favorite animal or bird

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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11- 12 Mar17 Happiness holds the key to successThere is a popular misconception that all successful people are relatively much more happier than those who are not so successful. As a result, we also tend to equate success as the measure of happiness; the more successful the happier the individual is. The second misconception closely linked with this line of thinking is our definition of success. We equate wealth as the primary indicator of success, closely followed by fame and following. The third misconception is that we equate happiness to be primarily reflected in what can be displayed especially material wealth, power and influence.

Now if we simply reorient our thinking and focus on what is happiness, we would make a startling discovery that the very concept of happiness in our mind is flawed. Happiness is being at peace with ones self in good times and in bad ; it is a choice we make every moment and that happiness just requires the right attitude. Now if we work backwards to arrive at the factors that nurture happiness you would make another startling discovery that happiness is defined by each of us differently and that being happy is a choice we make consciously.

No matter what work a person is engaged in, if he/she has a song on his/her lip, a smile on the face and no semblance of anxiety or tension writ on the forehead you are in the company of a happy individual who is also successful in meeting his/ her goals in life. On the other hand anxiety, tension and unrealistic expectations are the bane of individuals who chase success in the hope of finding happiness. They are like a dog chasing its tail. Happiness is visible but elusive; within grasp and yet just out of reach; a mirage so near and yet so far.

If you can do anything legitimate that brings you happiness, success is sure to follow. If you can follow your heart, dare to work on realizing your passion and be prepared to brazen out the challenges, happiness accompanies you and success is surely awaiting you at the summit. Why would a passionate mountaineer not attempt the toughest peak despite knowing the risks; to embrace happiness every step of the way. Not every athlete is a winner in a major meet; yet they derive pleasure and experience happiness in the small improvements they notice in their practice and training. Focus on happiness and the journey is fun, the destination never too far and the view always exhilarating.

Happiness likes in our ability to enjoy the process and not wait till we reach our goal; any progress towards our goal, is happiness on the move.

Try these:

  1. Pick up your old photo albums and go through the pictures in it. Notice how each photograph revives a pleasant memory, triggers a happy thought and recaps a moment long past but never forgotten. Happiness is all about re-living and reveling in those moments. Success is not even a factor in those moments.
  2. For no particular reason surprise the following :
  • Your family members
  • Your pet
  • A stranger
  • A long lost friend
  • A former teacher / mentor / colleague
  • Visit the sick in the hospital or the old age home
  • Make a visit to the local prison

Does success play a part in your happiness or does your happiness in the process make you realize that you made a success of your life?

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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10- The mask we wearTruth be told; each of us wears a mask to suit the occasion. We pretend to be happy when we are sad; try to obviate all traces of our jealousy, envy, greed; pretend to like those who we hate but cannot avoid. Many a time we sheepishly smile to disguise our embarrassments and irritation. While we, as individuals use a pseudo mask that attempts to project what we really are not, the clown merely amplifies it with a physical mask, to ensure all those who see it, are in sync with the image being projected.

There is a pattern in facets of ourself that we hide, behind the masks which we put on. The reality is that  ‘Each individual is actual 3 persons. The person I think I am; the person you think I am and the real me.’

The person I think I am : Each of us has an unique identity and that is not merely because of lineage but is also the outcome of how we are shaped by the family, the social settings around us and our own individuality. So siblings could still have widely differing interests, skills, attitudes, display different traits and mannerisms. What is important is how the individual visualizes himself/ herself. Some are pragmatic; some carry the baggage of their own limitations, anxieties, experiences and thinking. There are some who are over confident while others are modest to a fault.  Some are risk takers, others cautious, some reckless and most of us simply flow with the tide. There could be varied aspects of my own self that are probably noticed by others but I remain blind to it.  There could be areas of improvement that I need to focus on or talents and strengths that I can leverage. Listening to others holds the key to understand the person I really am.

The person you think I am : Who I perceive myself to be is what I largely tend to display; notwithstanding the fact that occasionally we attempt to sugar coat ourselves subtly to gain acceptance and occasionally we project a tough principled disposition so that we are seen as fair, upright and no nonsensical. However, there would always be some skeletons in our cupboard that we go to great lengths to hide. It could be some misdemeanors that we do not want others to know, we obfuscate inconvenient truths so that we are perceived more favorably and many a time we tend to display our deftness in ‘running with the hare and hunting with the hounds’ just to ensure that all our interests are projected. The person you think I am may be a far cry from the real me. Yet my style, mannerisms, behavior and attitude are tuned to make others think about me the way I subtly project myself. Phrases like ‘ still waters run deep’ or ‘Janus faced’  are testimony to the reality that ‘the person you think I am ‘ may be quite different in reality. Opening up with relevant facts will ensure that others get to understand me better.

The real me : The real me is largely hidden from others. Even I would known only myself better only when put to the test.  Occasionally some hidden aspects of me are known to very close family and friends. My insecurities, my fears, my hopes, my aspirations, my anxieties, my deepest thoughts, my confidence, my exuberance, my feelings of love, hate, revenge etc are part of me that very few know about. There are aspects of me that even I have yet to discover like my true potential, my natural aptitude, my yet to be discovered talents, my weakness, my mannerisms, my body language etc. The real me may crave for attention, may seek to be understood, may yearn for acceptance or may search for companionship. The real me could be fearful but when put to the test dare to confront his fears; she may be docile by nature but her wrath could be devastating. The real me strives to maintain equilibrium amongst the chaos of life or it could crumble like a dried leaf when trampled upon.  The real me lurks within. The real me is often searching to discover myself. The quest for individuality is what makes me uniquely ME.

Try these:

  1. Read up on or attend a session on the Johari Window concept.
  2. List out the following
  • Two criticisms about the person you admire the most
  • Two points of appreciation about a person you detest.
  • Two secrets you would find it hard to share in a public forum.(just a brief one line statement would do)
  • Two of the naughtiest things you did
  • Two actions that you took that you are really proud of
  • Your biggest fear
  • Your greatest strength

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-did-you-noticeIf you get irritated by the fact that despite your best efforts, all you get is criticism for what could have been done better, then ask yourself if you are guilty of the same mistake.  Each of us guilty, albeit in varying degrees of being critical, unappreciative and  finger pointing, especially when things do not happen as we plan or hope for. Occasionally some of us even berate ourselves for our lack of success and / or our failures because we find it hard to accept that we could not achieve what we set out to do. The point is that we are pained when others do not appreciate our toil, sweat and tears and unfortunately we too succumb to the same when we undervalue ourselves and others.

Obviously no one can avoid mistakes. However we need to look at mistakes, failures, lack of success from a more holistic view. This will enable one to be less critical, more appreciative and value the efforts, the sacrifices and the struggle without overvaluing momentarily success. The former gives us work ethics; success is an important milestone and motivator but cannot substitute for the discipline, the hard work and the rigor that is the corner stone of every successful person.

So how must one react to mistakes?

Acknowledge – Mistakes happen but it is the way we acknowledge the mistake that ensures it does not cascade into a disaster. If we have made a mistake, be honest about it and acknowledge it. If others have made mistakes, acknowledge the mistake without passing judgment and / or getting emotional about it. Mistakes happen for a variety of reasons and it is patently unfair to judge the mistake without grasping all the facts.

Appreciate – Mistakes happen because someone decided to do something. Even not doing something is a decision. In most cases there is honest effort, clear goals and possibly deep thinking that preceded the action.  One needs to appreciate all these, for often mistakes are not an outcome of these but a result of calculations gone wrong. By appreciating something, the signal is that one values everything done to get success and that not achieving it, is painful for all concerned.

Motivate – Criticism is the easiest thing to do; the challenge is to find something to motivate those who failed, to try again and hopefully succeed. Motivation is essential to keep up morale, kindle hope and most of all to express confidence in the person/s. Motivation pushes people to overcome the past, focus on the future and succeed beyond their capabilities.

Suggest – In the chaos that often follows failure, critics would give opinions, point out mistakes and berate the failure. Instead, an objective feedback in the form of suggestions would be more acceptable to those who are already dejected. In calmer moments they would review the performance and ponder over the suggestions and possibly come out with a better game plan to succeed.

Exude optimism – Every individual requires reassurance; if you are successful you need to be reassured that you can have a repeat performance but it is when you fail that you need to feel that still have it in you to try again and succeed. You exude optimism by being willing to lay your bets on success the next time around, by willing to join the journey the next time around and by proclaiming aloud that you have full faith and confidence. Optimism opens up numerous possibilities, gives greater confidence, you prepared to correct your previous mistakes and most of all you are ready to begin again.

Make it a point to notice the tears, the sadness and the pain first; acknowledge that and only then focus on the mistake.

Try these

  • So list your top 3 failures and what where the reactions of people close to you then. How did you cope with those failures?
  • What did you try differently and did not succeed in the first attempt?  What did you learn from that experience?
  • Do you recollect a time when you criticized someone for a failure and on hindsight realize that either you were wrong or too harsh?
  • What are the things / activities that you are keen to start experiment with but fear of failure is holding you back? How about giving some of those desires a try?

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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