Category: Reactions

Our purpose in life could be unique

Our purpose in life could be unique

Often friends and acquaintances have asked me what motivates me to write this blog. The quote today in many ways, aptly sums up the key motivation for me to write. I think, my writing and sharing matters to those who read it, especially those who have chosen to follow my blog and get the blog feed in their inbox. It is my belief, that I do make a difference, to many of those who read my blog. I am sure the same feeling is what drives others, be they artists, caregivers, teachers or volunteers to spend time pursuing what they do. For most a job is a job but for those driven to make a difference the value of their effort is never measured in numbers.

While engaging in what you do is at the core of how we inspire, ignite and spark the flame, what really makes the difference are the following:

Being passionate – Your passion and zeal are what generates the energy and motivation in those around you. Notice how a passionate teacher, a enthusiastic co-worker or a diligent boss energizes you do achieve the impossible. Go about your activities with enthusiasm, excitement and energy- you can be sure you will transmit it to those around. They will draw inspiration from you and that will ignite the spirit of enthusiasm in others.

Setting an example – Walking the talk is what sets the example for others to believe in and follow. It could be simple actions like carrying your own cloth bag or helping a challenged person cross the street or acknowledging someone who has done you a small favor. Being attentive to people who are talking to you, smiling when meeting a stranger on the subway or hotel lobby, being respectful to the waiter serving you are simple ways of setting an example especially to those who look up to you for the right values.

Encouraging – Everyone who falters on the first attempt tends to get discouraged. When they continuously slip they become despondent. They require encouragement. A clap, a word of encouragement, a wave of the hand in appreciation, a thumbs up, a pat on the back are little ways to fire up an individual. Next time you notice a first time speaker floundering, give him/ her a nod and a smile to indicate that they are doing good and just need to keep at it. It will make a difference to their performance. Have you realized how we encourage babies taking their first steps? We are more excited to see them making their first walk of faith. Yet, later we are the same people who do not share their passion for things they find amazing but those that do not meet our standards of sensibilities.

Listening – Have you ever noticed people, especially young kids talking in excitement? All they need is someone to listen to. Unfortunately most adults give them a casual hearing and often react with suggestions far removed from the tale the youngster is sharing. The simple act of listening and then responding with words of appreciation, encouragement and enthusiasm is what sparks and ignites the spirit of excellence in them.

Being non judgmental Many a time what others do may my complexly out of sync with our own tastes or sensibilities. However, we must suspend judgment and never react with our own views and thoughts. At times it takes time for us to understand the other person, many a time we cannot visualize what they can see and far too often we are too conservative to appreciate the risks others take. The best way to ensure the others are pepped up and given a nudge is by being non judgmental and being open minded to ideas, views, actions that may faze us temporarily. You may not really encourage because you cannot understand but do not discourage because you fail to understand the other person.

Try these:         

  • List out the three qualities of those people who have inspired you. Ensure one of them is a former teacher and if you have work experience, identify a former boss or colleague.
  • What is the one quality in you that others appreciate? Do you utilize that enough to inspire and enthuse those around you? What more can you do to fire the spark in people, especially children and youngsters?
  • Think of two instances where it was the example or encouragement of someone else that helped you reinvent yourself and achieve whatever you are proud of.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

We see the world as we are

We see the world as we are

Often we are blissfully ignorant of our own lopsided, one-dimensional and / or biased view of happenings around us. This is often the result of our inability to see things from a broader perspective or because we jump to conclusions quickly. Perhaps our inability to listen to others compounds the problem too. The net result however is that we end  up being ill informed, believe partial truths and arrive at erroneous conclusions that can have detrimental consequences for us.

The following suggestions can help each of us have a holistic view of the world around us.

Be aware of our personal bias. –  Our assumptions largely influenced by our personal biases often result in us seeing things from a very narrow perspective and erroneously believing that to be the only right thing. Our bias also influences us overlook red flags, ignore warning signs, makes us dogmatic and we are prone to seeing things the way we want it to be. Past personal experiences are a key reason why we are either overly risk averse or blissfully foolhardy rather than being pragmatic. E.g. Pushing kids to choose a stream of study that is time tested like engineering / commerce etc. whereas they have many off beats paths to tread on.

Accept the reality that there could be another point of view – As we are largely influenced by logical thinking, we get bogged down in our thinking and ignore views that do not fit into our frame of thinking. Negotiations often get impacted when parties to the negotiation are dogmatic that there is only way to see things and that is their personal viewpoint only. E.g. accepting that the world is round is tough initially because as far as our eye can see, the world is flat.

Be prepared to be corrected – Our ego gets hurt when someone points out our errors. Yet, mistakes happen all the time and it is in our interest to be aware of our mistakes and correct it.  However, very often we try to justify ourselves, defend our view point and pick on others faults instead of listening with an open mind. Our erroneous thinking when corrected actually gives us an advantage; for now we are on the right track. However, to get on to the right track we must be prepared to be corrected. E.g. during annual appraisal the superiors often share with us our areas for improvement. Our reaction to their observations holds the key to our progress thereafter.

See things from another’s perspective – Many times we are so obsessed with our own thoughts, ideas and views that we wade into a conversation or discussion wanting to inflict our opinions on all. At times we are so passionately convinced about our opinions that we neither pay attention to others nor do we respect a differing view point even if we grudgingly admit it has some merit. This also creates unpleasantness when differences crop up and we remain obstinate, unrelenting and dogmatic. E.g.  Our fanatical obsession with our personal food/ fashion/ political preferences etc.

Be ready to learn and change. – The speed of change often overtakes us and yet we are unwilling to adapt to the change. Technological changes are a classic case in point. Either because we technologically challenged or because we are old fashioned, we are often reluctant to adapt to the changes. At times we find it embarrassing to have to be taught by young people, while other times we find it tough to cope with the nuances of the learning. We rationalize that the good old days were better to continue the status quo. E.g. adapting to online banking and similar commercial transactions/ using varied apps

Try these:          

  1. Ask youngsters what are the latest apps and choose two apps that you think will be very useful for you. Use it regularly and decide if it is useful for you.
  2. Outline three changes around you, that you never anticipated/ imagined 5 years ago.
  3. What are your three cherished ideas/ views with which the following people differ completely?
  • Your children or friends or colleagues
  • Your siblings or cousins of a similar age group

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Our ego, our burden

Our ego, our burden

Sometimes you are fortunate to get some insightful pictures that convey a lot more than just the visual appeal. Today’s picture very succinctly captures the essence of many of our problems viz. our ego becomes our burden.

Our ego is planted in the mind and the individual nurtures it with gusto believing that she/he needs to have a place in the sun because she/he is special, gifted, unique and extraordinary. It is true that every individual is blessed with qualities that make the individual special in comparison to another. However, that does not necessarily mean that the individual is extraordinary and starkly stands out as a result. When the mind is too full of our own self, that is when ego starts puffing up like a balloon and at the slightest prick or extra inflation it can burst. Till that happens, every egoistic individual has to carry the burden of his ego, nurtured in the mind, as a burden.

The antidote to ego is humility. This is a quality that can be nurtured with the right upbringing, a pragmatic approach and most importantly the knowledge that ‘this too shall pass’. Success, however great, is always transitional. In a similar way, failure is never permanent.  If this concept is firmly ingrained in the mind, each individual will relish her/ his success without the success or achievement morphing into ego. Without the ego, an individual will never resent another, she/he will learn to enjoy the moments in the sun as well as in the shadow and will be less stressed, have more fun and live life with gusto.

Humility brings to the fore three definite benefits

You are able to take on criticism – Any negative feedback or criticism is largely resented except when a person is humble enough to acknowledge that s/he can change and become better by paying attention to one’s faults. Most times, the criticism is actually shared so as to make the individual aware of not so apparent faults, which if corrected can furrow the path to greater success.

You will not fear mistakes – Everyone makes mistakes. However, only a person who is humble does not fear mistakes. S/he is aware that not trying is more detrimental to progress than making mistakes. Mistakes can be rectified; not trying does not enable any form of progress. Mistakes also make us aware of our limitations, our erroneous approach and helps challenge our limits. Improvement and success are the goals that mistakes hope to inculcate once you are made aware of them.

You will learn to appreciate those better than you.- A humble person is the one who can recognize and applaud someone better than her/him. It also enables one to notice the progress one needs to make so as to reach the same zenith and improve upon it. Without being humble, chances are that we focus only on finding fault with others, instead of learning from them. Progress, demands improvement and improvement requires us to benchmark with those better than us. Only someone humble enough to acknowledge that reality will benefit from that realization.

Try these:          

  1. Click on the following link and read the blog post http://poweract.blogspot.com/2010/03/ego.html
  2. Which was the best criticism you received and how did it help you grow?
  3. Which was the one mistake that you failed to recognize for a long time because your ego would not permit it? How did you finally overcome it and what was the outcome of you correcting that mistake?
  4. Identify three persons as under
  • Classmates who you appreciate for their success
  • Competing professionals who you respect for their competence
  • Idols from any field who are role models for you

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Nirvana – the Rubick’s cube way

Nirvana – the Rubick’s cube way

I came across this wonderful cartoon,  that puts in perspective what we need to do this coming year, to ensure that by the year end, we can look back with no regrets – simply get ourselves sorted right.

All of us travel with a whole lot of baggage; some inherited, some acquired, a few bestowed and most of it our own creation. As a result we are constantly balancing our imaginary and realistic possessions in the fond hope that they will ensure that we live a worry free life of comfort and happiness. Unfortunately, with each passing day, juggling becomes problematic as we seem to have a penchant for adding to our possessions, keep craving for more and wishing some of our less prized or despised possessions would be taken away. The six sides of the Rubick’s cube give us a clue as to how we can organize our life and attain Nirvana without having to climb the mountain in search of a guru.

Each of the six sides of the cube can be seen as representative of a broad aspect of our life. Our physical well being, our mental/ intelligent growth, our emotional stability, our spiritual/ ethical grounding , our financial security and our social needs. All we need to do is to ensure we sort out each of these aspects of our life so that they, like the colors of each side remain in harmony and pronto the Rubik cube of life is sorted.

A few pointers given below, may perhaps help us get the knack of sorting each aspect of our life more expeditiously and productively.

Physical well being – This is a no brainer. Obviously if we are not in the best physical shape, it is extremely difficult to live a productive life. Eating in moderation, eating healthy and physical exercise are the keystones of physical well being. However,  worry and stress do tend to have an unduly negative impact on physical well being as well. Regular health checkup and the subsequent suggestions of the medical practitioner’s would ensure that your over physical well being is at its best at all times. Those will disabilities and challenges would do well to accept the realities and pace their lives accordingly. This is particularly true for those who unfortunately become victims of such disabilities after leading a perfectly healthy lifestyle.

Mental and Intellectual growth – Reading widely, soaking in new experiences, experimenting, living beyond one’s comfort zone are ways and means of ensuring you continue to growth mentally and intellectually. Get involved in the changes happening around, interact with the young, listen without judging and be open to ideas that seem contrarian to your intellect.

Emotional stability – It is extremely difficult to control our emotions. Too often it is our emotional outbursts that fractures relationships, creates chasms between individuals, contributes to build up prejudices and drains us emotionally. Balance in evaluating any response and responding with a measured response both in choice of words and tone is the key to ensuring we maintain our emotional stability. Beware of issuing threats, ultimatums’, taking extreme positions in arguments; replace it with pragmaticism, reason and common sense.

Spiritual and ethical grounding – While circumstances and upbringing, have a role to play in how we develop our spiritual and ethical values, going to extremes is the cause of tensions within us. One needs to be aware of the ground realities, be accommodation to differences yet remain true to the values one cherishes. Get clarity about your values and your actions will be synchronized leaving no scope for doubts and worries.

Financial security – In a materialistic world, financial security is compulsive reality. You need to provide for your future, your lifetime and for the unexpected. Make a realistic assessment and save accordingly. Take professional help if required. However, let not the future scare you so much that you do not enjoy the present. The challenge is to balance your current utilization and provide for future security. Take those holidays you crave for, indulge in some luxuries that you dream about, experiment with a progressive lifestyle and make your today just as enjoyable as the future you dream off.

Social needs – As a social animal, one cannot live as a hermit or in seclusion. Yet, on one extreme we are connected with all the gadgets and technology and on the other hand the physical interactions seem to be disappearing. Life is always full of beautiful memories which you have to create and make a reality. There is no substitute to meeting, interacting and enjoying life in groups. It could be families together, friends together, travel companions or making connections with strangers. Be there in person; minimize the use of gadgets and you will create magical moments to cherish forever.

Try these:

  1. Just list out one resolution that you will diligently adhere to for each of the above points. Begin Now.
  2. List out 3 of your fondest memories
  • With your parents
  • Your siblings / cousins
  • Your school mates
  • Your college mates
  • Friends you made in your travels
  • Unexpected but fond experiences
  • This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Be like melting snow…

Be like melting snow…

As we enter the last week of the year, Rumi gives us a very insightful sharing, that can help us transcend seamlessly into the New Year.  Like melting snow, so typical of the season of Christmas in the Northern Hemisphere, which simply lets go of its form, allows the impurities to be washed off and merrily adopts a new form and flows with the tide, each of us should embrace a similar attitude.

We need to begin afresh in the New Year. The emotional baggage of the past can be best got rid off by being like the melting snow. Wash it off the memory, clear if from our heart, just carry the purity, fun, joys which like sugar and salt will add flavor. Resolve to begin anew; scrub yourself clean of the dirt that rankled and tortured your mind and body; soap and shampoo yourself with the aroma of beautiful memories, of hopes and aspirations and walk towards the sun; all shadows behind you and a bright spot ahead.

In washing ourselves of ourselves we are merely discovering our true identity. The real self which was born in all purity and innocence and who grew up ensconced with love and impervious of any danger or fear.  The snow is nothing but water that changed due to the environment around and then it rediscovers itself as water when it washes itself of itself.

Each of us is like a snowflake; each one can be born anew in the New Year if we simply wash ourselves of ourselves.

Try these:           

  • What are the most memorable moments of your childhood, teenage years and currently?
  • What are your hopes / dreams / goals for the coming year?
  • What are three positive changes you propose to bring into your life?
  • What is the one way you will ensure that your loved ones begin to notice a marked positive change in you?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

It is ok to be not ok

It is ok to be not ok

At times events that happen to us or around make us feel overwhelmed. At these times each of us is caught in a bind, wondering if it is ok to give in to your natural feelings like anger, hurt, frustration etc. that the event has triggered or to try your best to be stoic, dispassionate and pretend to be brave. Often we prefer to embrace the latter, more to prove our own ability to cope rather than let our defenses down and spill out our deepest emotions. There is also the added pressures from the do- gooders around, who whisper gently that one needs to control his/ her emotions and not succumb to fear, frustration, anger, hurt and loneliness. Unfortunately, one cannot be completely divorced of personal emotions and reality demands that expelling pent up emotions is a good way to get rid of unwanted toxic feelings from within.

Hence there is nothing wrong in getting angry, upset, confused or feeling stuck up, lonely, hurt or to give in to a good crying spell. In short, it is perfectly ok not to be ok.

However, there is a risk that by regularly giving in to our negative emotions, we may become susceptible to adopting a ‘poor me’ syndrome. One needs to be watchful against undervaluing one’s self, looking at life from a all that goes wrong and not being able to enjoy the countless bounty one is blessed with. This is the point at which some of us begin to wage war with ourselves by finding fault in happenings that are not to our liking or events that come as a set back or by craving for what we do not have or aspire too. The thinking is skewed; the feeling of not having enough, the tendency to blame self, family, circumstances and fate are all symptomatic of a person at war with himself/ herself.

The antidote to this is threefold:

Do not bottle up your feelings – give release to your emotions. It is perfectly alright to feel down, hurt, depressed, sad, unhappy, anxious, worried and weepy. There are moments when we need to align our behavior with the feelings that are overtaking us. By giving vent to those feelings we are exhaling those toxic emotions and cleansing ourselves from within. The toxicity exhaled will be replaced by positive feelings of hope, acceptance, courage, determination and self belief. It is a cleansing of the mind and body that helps rejuvenate the spirit.

Do not overreact to circumstances – At the other end of the spectrum is a tendency to overreact to unforeseen, unfortunate and unforgiving circumstances that occasionally transgress into our peaceful existence. Since change is a constant in everyone’s life it is obvious that sooner or later each of us will have to deal with pain, fear, illness, failure and death. The problem is when we overreact and see our problems as disastrous, calamitous and unending. Bringing a sense of proportion and balance is the only way to deal with circumstances that we do not want to face but have overtaken us. So while giving in to our feelings and reacting to it without bottling it up is perfectly in order, over reacting and getting emotionally irrational would be a self inflicted disaster.

Find value in your current circumstances – No matter what the circumstance you face, look around and see that there are a people courageously coping with even more calamitous problems. In comparison it would occur to us that we are much more blessed in that our problems are relatively easy to cope with. The best way to cope with any form of emotional pain is to look it is from a point of view of what do we still have despite all that is happened. Seek out value that makes tomorrow worth looking forward to. E.g. a student who has failed can still count on his parents, friends and teachers supporting him despite them possibly criticizing him / her initially. Failure then is not the end of the world but a temporary blip in life.  An even more extreme example is the purported reaction of Thomas Alva Edison, whose life’s work was charred to ashes when his house went up in flames. His reaction was, as he said the ‘opportunity to observe the biggest fire he had ever seen in his life’. Subsequently when asked about the loss of all his years of research, he is purported to have quipped ‘ now I can start again with a clean slate’.

Try these:           

  • What were the two most challenging / trying/ painful experiences you encountered? How did you cope with it?
  • Share with us links or documents of 2 inspirational articles or stories or videos of people who have coped with their most challenging problems. You can email them to us at actspot@gmail.com

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Core life skills

Core life skills

In a world that is constantly changing and evolving, the challenges of coping with the changes and the evolving dynamics, are both stressful and laced with apprehension. Yet what does not change and what helps one remain balanced during testing times, are the core beliefs that we should embrace with faith. It is not just the technology that challenges us but more worrisome is the human dynamics that have been cast asunder; the traditional family values, societal norms and the fragility of the bonds between cultures, regions, religions, beliefs and values.  Yet to retain our sanity and remain equanimous  in the face of changes that tend to overwhelm us, all we need to do is focus and implement the core life skills which are:

Calm, but alert – If you see a duck paddling in the water, you would never notice how frantically it is paddling below the water because above the water it looks exceedingly calm and serene. Similarly, in the wild, observe the docile creatures like deer’s and gazelle’s. They remain calm but constantly look around to be alert to any danger lurking in the thickets. They do not visualize trouble in their mind and get anxious but they do anticipate trouble, as they are aware of predators around. We humans tend to absorb negativity and project it in our outlook instead of taking calculated risks with an inbuilt trigger to help us remain safe.

Relaxed, but ready – Observe the great athletes of the world. They know that they are competing against the best and that the results are quite open ended giving everyone a fair chance to win. Yet when they warm up before the event, they are fairly relaxed, prepped up but calm, anxious perhaps but equally excited because they know that it is crunch time. Their training and self belief have got them thus far, it is just their performance that matters. Winning and losing are par for the course and that is why they prepare well and compete hard. They are always ready for the competition. No tensions, no anxieties, no worries.

Smooth, but sharp –A pin, a needle, a nail have a sharp point but the rest of it is sleek and smooth. A football or basketball too is smooth but only when it has the air that sharpens its contours. A cricket and golf ball gets its sharpness when the exterior is hard but it is the smoothness that allows it to roll well. In life you can be smooth by being empathetic, polite, respectful, committed, loyal and honest. At the same time you need to be sharp by being assertive, determined, confident, courageous and focused.

Humble, but confident– Success must breed humility not arrogance. Failure must be seen as a stepping stone to success. When you get success, there is no virtue more important that being humble to keep your grounded. When failure unexpectedly makes its rounds in your life, believe that they temporary hiccups and be confident that you are well prepared to overcome the setbacks. As they say, a Lion never roars after a kill; it never has to announce his accomplishments. At the same time be aware that a Lion is successful only 17-20% of the time it attempts a kill. Yet it is supremely confident that it can succeed the next time around. Your humility must never be seen as your weakness nor must your confidence morph into arrogance.

Try these:           

  • What are your three favorite quotes / proverbs / inspirational sayings / poem’s? Do they reflect any of the above core principles of life?
  • Which of the above 4 principles best represent your nature? Which principle do you think you will find most difficult to implement and why?
  • Can you identify one teacher, one friend, one colleague and one relative who best display most of the above principles in their life?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

First things first

First things first

In life there are times when we know what must be done to rectify a situation but either our ego or the fear of retribution or the anxiety of embarrassment hold us back. Yet, on hindsight, we do realize that the benefits of being first to rectify the situation far outweigh the short term concerns that prevent us from doing what is right. Three of the most classic cases of us suffering more for our procrastination in not taking the right step are as under:

Apologizing – The first to apologize is the bravest –  Our fear of retribution or occasionally our ego  will often over ride our sense of justice and we would often delay offering an apology for a mistake we have made or an injustice (albeit mistakenly ) committed. Yet the moment you decide that an apology is warranted and that too quickly, if you can gather the courage to apologize by  stifling the fear and/ or ego, you will realize that it is the bravest decision that you would have taken. Often it is also a very emotionally fulfilling decision because you would otherwise have to carry the guilt around. Mistakes happen to the best of us; however it is the bravest who can quickly apologize and seek forgiveness for the mistake.

Forgiving – The first to forgive is the strongest. – Our petty mindedness would trigger our ego and forgiving a mistake and accepting an apology would become a very difficult proposition. Unnecessarily we believe that by forgiving we are lowering our prestige or letting another go scot-free. The truth is that it takes a lot of courage to pardon someone who has knowingly or unknowingly hurt or troubled us. If we take an eye for an eye approach we would be carrying a burden of acting differently from what we really are. Instead by forgiving one who seeks forgiveness we would have displayed our moral courage and large heart. Forgiveness is a display of good character, sound values and the courage to do the right thing.

Forgetting – The first to forget is the happiest – If one nurtures a grudge, holds a past hurt to fuel fire to take revenge or allow ourselves to be consumed by rage and anger, it takes a toll on our mental peace, physical health and destroys our personal tranquility. For the hurt you feel, the disappointments you face because of others, the bad times that have overwhelmed you and the nagging need to get even with others, only results in you carrying an unseen burden within. Let go of that burden by forgetting the torments, the tormentors and the past and your heart, mind and body would feel lighter, less burdensome and certainly more relaxed. You will be a man with no worries; the person who is happiest.

Try these:           

  • Think of the time when you apologized for a mistake and you were not forgiven. What could be the reason for the other person not willing to forgive you?
  • What is the hurt/ anger/ guilt that you are still carrying around? Why is it that you are not able to forget the incident or forgive the person who hurt you?
  • If at all you have any painful memories of the past, how have you coped with it? Have you tried forgiving and / or forgetting it or the perpetrators if any ?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Never complain Never explain

Never complain Never explain

Whining and moaning are typical ways in which we try to deflect attention away from ourselves for our failures. When that fails we try to justify, rationalize and/ or offer lame excuses camouflaged as logical reasons for our failures. The unfortunate part is that, whether we complain or we explain, the reality is that we goofed up and that our credibility is at stake. It would take a lot of time, effort and perseverance for us to regain trust of others, get their buy in and hopefully rebuild relationships.

A complain is a poor lament. Complains are akin to laments that seek to put blame on others. It could be people, situations, events all of which imply that the problem is elsewhere and not with the person making the complain. A failure, is a natural phenomena when there are many variables and unpredictable circumstances. However, having the grace to accept failure is praise worthy when it is shorn of any form of complain. Complains are means to deflect attention elsewhere and a decoy to avoid taking responsibility. Complains will never change the reality; it may however show the person making the complain in poor light, possibly seen as having poor grace and definitely looked at as a whiner who shirks responsibility.

Explaining is perilously close to fibbing. A heightened and convoluted method of complaining is explaining. The objective here is to pretend to offer an unbiased and rational logic. The trouble is that it often tells only one side of the story from the tellers point of view. Facts related to other participants in the story may be conveniently ignored, distorted or grossly exaggerated to suit the explanation. Here again the technique is used when the intent is to escape responsibility or to put things in a light more amiable to the person telling it.

Both, a complain and an explanation would have a fair bit of truth but it is the futility of it, when the damage has been done, that makes it most unsuitable. Again a complain or an attempt to explain would also be tinged with or laced with a concoction of convenient facts, possible half truths and occasionally distorted truths. The listener would always receive it with skepticism; analyze it for distortions and make judgments that could be more prejudicial than the real facts.

Try these:           

  1. You have been nominated to organize a picnic. You went about the task meticulously. However, there was a poor turnout for the picnic with quite a few last minute cancellations. The bus in which you had to travel came late, the air-conditioning was not working and it broke down once on the way. The venue of the picnic saw unprecedented crowds and the overall picnic was disappointing.
  • How would you share the picnic experience with a close friend from a different organization?
  • How would you brief your boss who was a last minute drop out?
  • HR writes to you stating that there was strong negative feedback from the participants about the organization of the picnic and seek your feedback on the same.

2. Assume you borrowed a valuable item from a friend.  What will you do when the time comes to return the same and the circumstances are as under:

  • You have lost/ misplaced it
  • You discover that the item has been seriously damaged.
  • You have a strong urge to keep it and not return it because you know it is much more useful to you whereas it will be junked in the friends place.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Fear and Courage – the difference is…

Fear and Courage – the difference is…

As individuals each of us carry a variety of fears and we try our best to keep it secret. At the same time we are we are very proud of some of our courageous deeds and would be ready to share it with any audience. Perhaps we would much more courageous stories to share if we saw fear and courage in the right perspective; fear is a reaction; courage is a decision.

Incidentally, FEAR is also a well know acronym, which when expanded reads as False Evidence Appearing Real (you can read more about it by clicking on the following link http://poweract.blogspot.com/2009/12/fear.html ) Hence almost all our fears are our mental reactions to what we imagine would be dangerous/ disastrous / hurtful / risky for us. At times we have third party evidence to suggest that the risk is real e.g. wild animals mauling humans or people falling off and dying when on a trek etc. What we fail to realize is that risk is omnipresent. Our reactions are impulsive, based on our mind quickly picturing negative images or incidents of happenings and we choose to play safe. It is not to suggest that fears are unwarranted. Fears play an important role in protecting us from danger or taking undue risks. Fear helps us prepare for eventualities like taking insurance, get vaccinations etc. The issue with living in the shadow of fear is our inability to move out of our comfort zone, not creating opportunities to realize our potential and not participating in joys, fun and adventure which is at a shaking hands distance.

Courage is a conscious action. This means it is a planned decision not a mere reaction. It is true that for self protection, there are times when we become courageous more impulsively than as a result of a decision but these are far, few and in between. True courage is daring to face the challenges knowing fully well that there is a whiff of failure, risk and at times even a threat to one’s life. Soldiers are trained to fight but it is their valor and courage that is on display during war. Similarly ordinary mortals like you and me, are often called to take a courageous stand against brute might, unscrupulous elements, cocking a snook at bribe takers and demanding our rights. The courage we display then is not accidental but a conscious, well understood and a moral stand that we decide to follow.  Courage is guts but it is not necessarily followed by glory and it definitely will leave us with less guilt and more self belief.  Courage is standing up for one’s beliefs, being able to withstand a brute majority viewpoint and speaking up one’s mind, standing by those whose cause you espouse despite massive opposition and standing by one’s conviction however unpopular they may be.

Try these:           

  1. List out 3 -5 issues on which you have very different views, as opposed to those who support it. Write a letter to the editor of the local news paper on each of these issues. Write each letter one week apart.
  2. Outline a concrete plan of action to overcome 2-3 of your greatest fears. E.g. fear of prisons or visiting mental institutions or fear of snake/ reptiles. Execute your plan.

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