Category: plans

Choosing the right pain

Choosing the right pain

It is often said that pain is inevitable but suffering is optional. There is much truth in this statement. Today though, we are going to look at choosing the right pain so that suffering never becomes an option. This is the pain of discipline which in the long run is an excellent antidote against physical, emotional, moral and ethical suffering. The problem with discipline is one of finding the right motivation and sustaining it over a life time. Discipline is one pain that is not excruciating but is more in the nature of a dull ache that remains lifelong. However it is also a pain that is a constant reminder that one is active, making progress and rapidly moving towards attaining some goals.

While motivation is the fulcrum around which discipline revolves, there are other factors that play an equally critical role. Here is what one needs to do to cope with the pain of discipline so that the ache is relatively easier to bear and put up with.

Set goals – The first thing each individual needs to have in front of her/ him are clear cut goals to be achieved. Very broadly one must have goals for personal, financial, professional and emotional aspects of one’s life. Goals must not be mere dreams or hopes but clearly outlined end points to reach. Use SMART goal setting to list out your goals. Your first goal is to read up on SMART goal setting and write down your goals.

Plan your day – Remember school days where there was a time table that helped ensure you did all the home work and prepared for tests. It did help that the schools and teachers were strict and enforced the discipline. Something similar like a time table existed in college too but we were largely given a choice to follow it. Except for attendance being taken off and on, no one really enforced anything. Perhaps that is the point where we lost focus in following a time table. If one has a plan or time table for the day, it enables one to focus on tasks required to attain the targets set. More importantly one can prioritize which is the key to time management which is another important aspect of being disciplined.

Make no excuses – Excuses are the bane of discipline. Waiting for an auspicious day, date or time is one excuse that delays starting. However even more dangerous are the frivolous reasons or excuses that we use to rationalize being indisciplined. Eliminate excuses and pronto you get disciplined.

Learn to say NO – If excuses are a bane for discipline, our inability to say NO to others as well as to our own devilish mind are the super bugs that destroy any semblance of discipline in us. Saying NO to others is viewed as being rude, bad mannered and very unpleasant. However what we forget is that one needs to say NO to anyone or any situation that is potentially harming our interests. It does not mean that we are self centered but focused on the greater good for the self. We certainly refuse sugar in any form if suffering from serious diabetes but find it hard to say NO to something that will definitely disturb our discipline and in turn cause hurt or damage to us. Incidentally, even a diabetic may find it hard to say NO to a very tempting dessert and all the good work done to control his/ her diabetes is undone because of lack of self discipline.

Find MOTIVATION – Motivation comes from fear or gain. The first form of motivation is rather negative in outlook but is just as effective to be disciplined. Fear of ill health is the major reason for people adopting healthy life styles be it exercising, eating right, avoiding smoking etc. However the greater motivator is the prospect of gain. Being appreciated for the fitness, feeling energetic and looking smart are more appealing reasons for having a disciplined life style. Similarly find intrinsic motivation to be disciplined. Intrinsic motivation is  the Motivation that gives you a high from within. Intrinsic motivation is more sustaining, readily adopted and much more fulfilling in the long run; discipline is nothing but embracing motivation.

Try these:                 

  • Have you written down your goals? If not do it first.  Next write down the special actions required to be taken to achieve your goals.
  • Practice saying NO at least three times a day. Toughest is to say NO to a boss / person in authority. When was the last time you said NO to your boss?
  • Can you identify your motivation to read this post till this point? How are you going to make use of the learning’s from this post?
  • If you had time to do just three things before you die, what are the three things you would do? Can you do them NOW?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

One change at a time

8-one-change-at-a-time

With exams around the corner, it is inevitable that students and often their parents feel the pressure of managing the study time tables so as to perform well. That is also the time when time pressure, the accumulated backlog of studies and the need to overhaul one’s life suddenly begins to overwhelm all the stake holders in this game. A similar situations crop up in our life off and on and the need to overhaul our life is the one common constant irrespective of which phase of life we are in. In trying to overhaul one’s life, the cardinal mistake we make is, thinking that we can overturn all the bad habits we have imbibed over the years, overnight. Just as you and I took nine months to be born, just like a year takes twelve months to change and a day requires 24 hours to be completed before a new day begins, we have to patiently work on small changes in our attitude, style and behavior before the effects of transformation are visible.

The four essentials for transformation are:

Deciding to change – This is the first step in bring about any meaningful change in one’s life. Until one decides to change, the status quo would always seem impossible to change. Excuses, rationalization and reconciliation with the existing situation would constantly nag you into succumbing to the status quo. Decide that you need to change your habits, your style, adopt a different strategy E.g. You know you have to spend more hours studying. You will find enough reasons why you are unable to do so and rationalize your decision for not being able to change and finally reconcile that you are a mediocre student. The same holds true for those wanting to lose weight but not being able to get themselves to eat healthy or exercise.

Planning the change – Once you decide to change, the key is to spend some time planning how you are going to bring about the change and be the change you want. Many of us fail in this step simply because we visualize that implementation of the plan is impossible. If you can outline the map to achieving what your goal is, you would at least have a clear agenda to follow. E.g. Having a clear time table to study is the first step in ensuring you are able to do justice to each subject that you have to study. Those subjects requiring practice or additional study, however much you dislike the subject, must be allotted more time.

Implementing the change – This is the toughest part of the process of transformation. At this stage you are attempting to move away from all that you felt comfortable doing despite knowing the consequences, to disciplining yourself doing unpleasant things, in the hope that it will give you good results. The tough part is beginning, the tougher part is motivating yourself to continue but the toughest part is keeping the momentum going. The trick is to visualize the small changes, mentally see yourself inching yourself forward towards your goals and occasionally noting how much you have progressed and how closer you are to your final goal.

Being patient – This is the most important virtue because without it, one would be tempted to give up. Patience comes from self belief, from charting out progress and being reasonable about your expectations at every given time line. Occasionally you could be slipping as per your plans, at other times you feel your pace is slow and many times there seems to be no motivation to pursue your plans. Remember the number of times you fell of your bicycle before you managed to master it or the number of times you felt you were drowning before you learned to swim. The lure of the eventual goal must be so encompassing that you become patient enough to trudge along despite all the obstacles that come your way.

Try these:

  • Try to play a new sport or pick up a new hobby. Notice how you take time to gain expertise, despite your possible talent in that field.
  • List out 3 changes that you want to bring about in your life. Outline what is stopping you from doing it. Plan and implement the plan to bring about the change.
  • Challenge yourself to overcome a constant criticism that you often encounter either from your spouse / child/ friend / colleague / well wisher.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

The power of self esteem

32-power-of-self-esteemMost of our problems can be attributed to either over confidence or lack of confidence. Our focus today would be on latter issue of lack of confidence, which essential has its roots in our poor self esteem. Self esteem is confidence in one’s own worth and abilities. Our poor self esteem could be an outcome of various negative influences, experiences and / or our own mindset. Constantly being criticized, facing a couple of failures, our inability to take risks, are some of the key influencers that dent self esteem. While we cannot completely erase the past, we certainly can take some proactive steps to ensure that we recognize our self esteem and build up on it to improve, contribute and prosper. The quick three step approach is as follows

Believing you can do it: The important thing here is to first have something to believe in. So it is better you have a clear goal and a plan to achieve it. When we attempt to set goals, the first hurdle we face is questioning ourselves if the goal is worthwhile, doubting our ability to attain it and constantly comparing the goal with other alternatives and / or with our perception of goals set by others. Setting goals that revolve around our passion, our talent, our flair and our motivation is a simple way to make a wish list. Once this wish list is outlined, translate them into goals with a clearly outlined strategy to attain it, being aware of your own efforts that would have to accompany your dreams to turn it into a reality and believing that you have it in you to make it come true. Your belief comes from your willingness to make the sacrifices that invariably precedes the reward, the confidence within you that you will take it to its logical conclusion and the drive and motivation within you to make it happen.

Believing you deserve it: While you may have a clear goal, an inner urge to push yourself to attain the goal and a very strong desire and motivation, what can possibly play spoil sport is your reluctance to acknowledge that you deserve the success you are aiming for. It is the belief that you are just as deserving as the next person to dream big and reach for the stars that sets apart the winners from the also ran’s. Every start up is based on this one key principle that you are as capable of coming up with a winner as the existing or future competitor. Every employee who believes that he deserves better is the one who makes the upward move either laterally or within the same organization. A realistic personal SWOT analysis would be a good spring board to launch your future, for that is when you put your beliefs to the test.

Believing you’ll get it: The initial period when you dare is often fraught with risk and confusion. Every small set back would dent your confidence and you begin to doubt if you will get what you crave. Almost everyone rushes in with enthusiasm but the sheer effort that is required to keep the momentum going is herculean and that is when one begins to falter. It is only the belief that you will attain what you have planned no matter what the cost, no matter what price you have to pay, that will energize you to keep going. A blind belief would not me of much use, but belief backed by appropriate action is the key. The belief that you will get it must appropriate trigger action and soon the near impossible begins to happen to us. Your belief is like the recharge in your mobile phone; every recharge boosts its ability to deliver each day.

Believe that you can do it; believe that you deserve it; believe that you will get it !

I just used the same principle to get my blog posts going; I can vouch it works !

Try these:

  1. Click on the following link to get a comprehensive write up on Self Esteem:  http://tinyurl.com/jsnu97p 
  2. Make a list of the following and achieve it.
  • The amount of money you can raise for your favorite charity in the coming week.
  • A current topic about which you are passionate, about which you will write a letter to the editor of a local newspaper, within a fortnight.
  • A local historical site or tourist spot or museum which you have not visited but will do so in the next 1 month
  • Three life style changes that you are keen to bring about, which you will work on immediately and see the expected results within a year. E.g. Lose 10 kgs weight by year end

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Sucess is all about adopting stubborn goals and flexible methods

17-5 July 15 -Stubborn Goals and Flexible methodsThe constant challenge in life, is to sift options and zoom in on what one desires. This is because change is the only constant in life and change always redefines the future. When the future is being constantly redefined, every individual is required to make course corrections. However a course correction does not mean we need to change our destination but merely the route map and mode of getting there. Of course dramatic and major changes may require one to change the goals but even then the alternative chosen would be equally important and challenging. What does not change, is the desire to reach our goal. Success and achievement in life therefore hinge on how well you choose your goal, map out your way and stick to your plans. Here is a road map to success.

Choosing the right goal Right from school days when we have to choose the optional subjects, moving on to choosing the career path and later life goals in the chosen path we are constantly having do decide our goals. Most of the time we are confused, other times we realize our goals are beyond our capability or passion and then we have to revise our goals.

Deciding on a plan of action If selecting a goal is challenging, choosing the plan of action is relatively simple since the goal is clear. What is important is to think thorough the plans, being clear about the assumptions and also outlining the alternative plan/s. Backup plans are vital for they provide a quick alternative should our original plans get derailed. However, there is a real danger that we can get dogmatic and fixated about our original plan and approach. This could create problems if one does not factor in the numerous changes that come about, because of the dynamic environment around.

Reviewing the progress A plan of action is only as good as the progress one makes using it. It is imperative therefore that one constantly reviews how one is progressing and make adjustments for the deviations if any. All plans must have milestones and timelines and wherever possible assumptions based on which the milestones and timelines have been set. These will provide the yardstick for reviewing the progress.

Revising the plans – This is extremely difficult because we have to first acknowledge that we have slipped on our plans. Secondly it could also suggest that our plans were not well thought out. Thirdly it could imply we have to relook our personal competence and commitment as also keep us wondering if our goals are too ambitious or if we have the capability to execute our plans and realize the goals. Despite these self doubts and apparent set back, we have to look at revision of plans as a necessary detour to get back on track.

Continuing the journey – Whether we continue with our original plans or move on with the revised plans, what is important is to keep moving on. Sometimes we are bogged down by frustration, the slow progress, our inability to cope with pressures and setbacks; these are times when we are tempted to give up and stop. Focused and well directed efforts are never wasted but the progress and results may not always be visible. Faith is what will sustain and help one to push ahead no matter what the constraints.

Enjoying the success Since success will eventually come to those who believe in their dreams and goals, it essential that one learns to relish and enjoy success. Many a time, even when we reach the destination we are reluctant to appreciate and recognize that we have pursued and attained out goal. This is partly because along the way, we have lost hope or because we undervalue our success by comparing it with the achievements of others or because we have reset our goals to much bigger and loftier ones. While resetting goals, especially aiming for loftier goals is commendable, not valuing achievements would be like eating bland food for mere sustenance.

Try these:

  1. Go back and review your New Year Resolutions. How far have you succeeded? It is half way through the year and have you a list of things which you have not even started work on? Is it because you didn’t write down the action plan to achieve them?
  2. Choose one of the following as your major area of concern and write down the goal you hope to achieve this year so as to minimize your concern. Also outline the road map with timelines to help you attain it. If you already have a plan review it and make changes if needed to speed up the process of attaining your goal.
  • Improving your finances / savings
  • Bringing about a better work –life balance
  • Adopting a healthier lifestyle.
  • Attaining a significant professional / academic growth
  • Improving and strengthening your current family relationships
  • Working out an overseas holiday trip with family.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com