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34- 26 Sept17-Your thoughts define you

You are defined by your thoughts. Your thoughts in turn are influenced by your attitude. Each of us has a different set of upbringing, education and experiences. The environment in which we grew up could have instilled in us the values we hold dear, the fears and hopes we carry within and helps us visualize opportunities and widens our horizons. All these factors contribute to the type of attitude we embrace which in turn fortifies us to meet the challenges of life and grasp the opportunities that come our way. We can take credit for the successes we attain and by the same yardstick take responsibility for not realizing our full potential. Far too often, we limit ourselves because we limit our thinking. Either we fear the worst or we doubt our own abilities.

To explore our potential and to leverage it one needs to focus on the following:

Clean up the cobwebs in the mind – Our mind is cluttered with thoughts that largely center around self preservation, safety, risk avoidance and following the set path. Occasionally we indulge in the luxury of visualizing something different, more outlandish, something that seems to be closer to our heart. Those who dare to explore that whole heartedly often do succeed because they have clarity and focus on what to do rather than what to avoid. Do not let the mind be filled with confusion, anxiety and be overwhelmed. Instead separate and segregate our numerous thoughts and arrange them in an orderly manner so that one begins to get clarity.

Rearrange the muddled up plans in the mind – Many of us suffer from wanting to do too many things. As a result we set ourselves multiple goals but lack the personal bandwidth to manage all the goals. We need to prioritize our goals and map out the specific action to be taken for each goal. This will help one focus better and avoid negative inputs like fear, depression and worry sabotaging our efforts.

Stop thinking and begin to act on our thoughts – Perhaps the one thing almost all of us are guilty of, is thinking too much and not taking enough decisive action. If we let our mind imagine the worst case scenario and blow it out of proportion then we will spend more time trying to ring fence the imaginary problems. Consequentially we delay taking action thereby derailing the original plans. While planning is essential one must put the plans in action if one has to make tangible progress. So keep at bay the self doubt, the feeling of inadequacy and the anxiousness and apprehensions and replace it with confidence, hope and faith in your abilities.

Review and caliber our action as required – Even the best laid plans may not factor in circumstances beyond our control or imagination. Reviewing the progress of plans and recalibrating the action required is critical to getting the project implemented. If we do not pause to review there is every possibility that you continue to progress in the wrong direction or that we take a circuitous route that is time consuming and costly. Never hesitate to admit you made a mistake or that you need to be realistic and cut your losses. Do not become dogmatic or egoistic lest they cloud your judgment. Try and be open to feedback, be open to correction and be ready to change.

Try these

  1. List out some goals that you have set for yourself but which have not yet taken off. Identify the reasons for the lack of progress on your part.
  2. Identify two initiatives that you started off earnestly but which failed/ disappointed you. Can you put your finger on the specific mistakes you made which you did not correct on time and led to the failure/ disappointment?
  3. Write down the 3 negative emotions you are guilty of harboring in your mind far too often. Now ask a few family members, friends and colleagues to share the one negative quality you display the most. Their responses could be an eye opener for you.

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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28- An Energy called YOUThe sun is the universal source of energy but YOU are an equal source of energy, especially for the people around you and those in your circle of influence. If you didn’t cry at birth the doctors and the nursing staff, not to mention your parents would be very worried. Bet you put all your energy into crying loudly to announce your arrival and to proclaim that you carry with you, enough energy to transform the world. If you remained listless anytime during your tender growing up age, your parents would be very worried. It is your energy that was replicated in your zest that parents crave for. No doubt, too much energy can make you disruptive and mischievous but ask any parent and they would prefer that, to a dull submissive listless individual. Every individual is thus blessed with enough and more energy; but it needs to be channelized well.

You can ensure that your energies are best channelized by ensuring the following:

Having the right thoughts – Every action is triggered by the thoughts one has. Hence it is critical that one needs to be able to train the mind to be positive, confident and proactive. In a dynamic world, where there is constant turbulence minute to minute, our thoughts too keep churning at a rapid pace. It can oscillate from one extreme of unbridled happiness to the other extreme of despondency depending on the happenings around. Training the mind to have the right thoughts consists of being balanced in good times and in bad, developing the art of seeing the glass full no matter how desperate  the situation and being able to focus on a win win solution at all times.

Ensuring you have the right emotions – Emotions in simplistic terms are thoughts being converted into feelings. Since it is the thoughts that are converted into feelings, the feelings expressed would display the same characteristics of the original feelings. Negative emotions like anger, frustration, jealousy etc. would largely reflect the thoughts that triggered the emotion as much as hope, confidence, happiness etc. reflect the positive thoughts. It is possible though that despite entertaining negative thoughts like fear, anxiety, hopelessness etc. we can still retain control over our emotions and channelize them in a positive manner. E.g. Seeing failure as a stepping stone to success.

Taking the right actions – Both thoughts and emotions that remain bottled up merely traumatize a person mentally. It is the when one channelizes these thoughts and emotions into tangible action that the energy in you gets momentum and coverts itself into results. The right actions are overwhelmingly determined by thoughts and emotions but to get it right one has to take into consideration the ground realities. E.g. Anger is a perfectly legitimate thought and emotion when plans fail or things are messed up because of tardy execution. Expressing it is also a perfectly valid action to ensure that those responsible for triggering it, realize their folly. However, anger if expressed in a hostage like situation can be very counterproductive.

Since you are a very potent source of energy, you should be aware at all times about the tremendous power you have and ensure that you use it responsibly. More importantly learn to use it with confidence and integrity by aligning your thoughts, emotions and actions.  

Try these

  1. Think of a few situations where you were embarrassed by your own thoughts emotions and actions / /behavior. E.g. when you lost your temper or did not stand up for what was right or when you cheated in an exam etc.
  2. In the recent past did you succumb to the following:
  • Shouting at someone
  • Cheating in a game
  • Using foul language
  • Telling a lie
  • Becoming jealous
  • Intimidating someone

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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19-28 May-17- Buried or plantedWhen you come to a road block in life or when the future looks dark and gloomy, panic is inevitable, but worse still is the feeling of helplessness. Both panic and helplessness result in just one ending; giving up and surrendering without exploring alternatives/ opportunities / possibilities.

On the other hand when faced with a mountain/ road block / a spiked fence, look at it as a challenge to your ingenuity; a dare to be taken on. Find a way over it, under it or around it. The moment you think it is the end of the road; you will never see the pathways adjacent. It is almost like lying face down and burying your head in the mud. It is dark, musty, irritating and hopeless. What you need to do is not push downward to find a way out but turn over to see the sky the clouds and the infinite universe beckoning you. It is a paradigm shift but one which opens up completely new opportunities and possibilities.

Every individual must believe that he/ she is a seed that can still sprout and bear fruit. Age is no bar, you being healthy or not is not an issue, your status in life is no limitation; for you can always give of yourself to the world. Accept what comes your way, then adapt to the situation you find yourself in, search for a way to sprout and grow; it will take time it will take effort but it will be worth it.  Many of us are like discarded seeds found on the roadsides; full of potential but alas not planted. You need not be planted underground to sprout and grow. How many of us volunteer as blood donors; have a social cause that we engage in; take the effort to discharge our civic obligations like voting or become responsible citizens by avoiding use of plastic bags; segregating waste; following the rules of the road etc. Similarly, when planted underground as would be the case when one is faced with injustice or a debilitating disease, do I simply surrender or fight back? Can I file an RTI or make the effort to get the wrong corrected? Can I opt to be an organ donor? Can I participate in an awareness march or protest march to protect the environment or save more water and actively engage in similar such causes?

You are buried when you go underground without a whimper; you are planted when you can sprout and grow and display your presence especially in arid conditions.

Try these:

  1. Write a letter to the editor of the local newspaper sharing your concern and giving suggestions about a local social issue or problem that you feel very strongly about.
  2. Source the following:
  • The method of filing an RTI application
  • An eye donation / organ donation form
  • List of NGO’s working in the area of your social concern
  • The name and address of the authorities concerned to whom you can report a problem pertaining to your deepest concern e.g. garbage clearance / burst pipeline

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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18- 18 May 17- Never explain never complainThe moment things do not go as per our plan or wishes, the tendency is to complain about something or the other that we believe, derailed our plans. Similarly, no sooner we are criticized, before we even ingest the criticisms, we are quick off the blocks with our explanations and excuses. To maintain our individuality, to become independent in thought, word and deed it is essential that we act as per our convictions and take responsibility for the consequences of our action. No matter what the outcome, there is no need to complain or explain; for it is the outcome of a responsible action.

To ensure one takes a good independent decision follow these rules:

Act responsibly: This is tougher than it looks because sometimes temptations, the need to act macho, the ego to prove something, the urge to defy others etc. overtakes our rationality and we act emotionally thereby opening up the risk of doing things that we may regret later. Responsible behavior is being fully aware of the consequences and being more rational and less emotional. You will never have to justify your action for you took it responsibly.

Take responsibility: There are times when you as a member of a team have to stand by your team and your leader even if you have a dissenting view about the action taken. Similarly as a leader there are times that you have to take harsh and unpleasant decisions which the majority may not favor. These are the times you take responsibility without fear or favor.

Learn from the feedback: There is always scope for improvement. Hence it is important that even if you don’t have to explain or never opt to complain, listen carefully to the criticism, the suggestions, the alternatives and the explanations given by others. Look also for examples of others; those who succeed, those who fail, those who did not act and those who sat on the fence. Everyone is offering free lessons to learn from; keep learning!

Think before you act: You should seek out the best from books, people, experiences and thought. However the decision has to be taken by you after applying your mind to the action you are going to trigger. Be aware of the velocity your action will trigger, the reactions it will generate and the goal it is set to achieve. When you are sure that there is balance between these and that it is time to be decisive act with confidence and faith. There is nothing you will regret ever.

Try these:

  • Which was the best decision that you took in your life?
  • What is the one mistake you still regret?
  • What was the stupidest decision you took under pressure from others?
  • What was the one situation you had to make up an excuse to get out of trouble?

 Did you face the following situations and how did you deal with it?

  • Your parents asking you to justify your poor scores in exams
  • Your coach benching you for a poor performance
  • Your friend / partner / spouse constantly complaining about a certain behavioral trait of yours

 List out your complains against the following people

  • Your parents / siblings
  • Your colleagues/ bosses
  • Your three best friends
  • Your neighbor
  • The last three co-passengers who disappointed you

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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16- Your visiting cardYour radiating smile is the first thing that enables people to connect with you. It is what they look for when they meet you and that is what they expect no matter what the interaction is about. A smile gives all parties comfort, confidence and a comprehensive platform to communicate. It does not matter if it is a toothy smile or a hearty laugh, it is the genuineness in it that gives it an unique identity. It is your logo that people identify you with; one that gives everyone who interacts with you an anticipation of what to expect when they are with you.

While a smile sets the tone, it is your overall demeanor, which will reflect your personality and your uniqueness. Your manners, your etiquette’s, your dress sense, your communication skills, your attitude, your ability to put people at ease, your commitment etc. enable others to respect and appreciate you as a dependable individual.

Just as the proof of the pudding is in the eating, it is the image that you leave behind after each interaction that becomes your trademark. The expertise and maturity you display in your interactions would be valued as much as your ability to get results. You will command respect and be rewarded with trust. You will be valued as through professional and be sought for first especially when the chips are down. Similarly how you deal with customers and employees would be reflected in their interactions with you. A good way to judge how they perceive you is to note how many of them are willing to come and share their concerns as well as successes with you.

When you command respect you would realize that your visiting card is being valued !

Try these:

  1. List out three changes that your will make to overcome some limitations that hamper your personality.
  2. Who are the three most dependable personalities you have encountered in your professional life. For each individual, list out three remarkable qualities that endear them to you.
  3. Write a tag line for yourself. ( In one sentence write down, what would you like to be remembered for )

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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43-become-a-seed-and-then-growOver the past few posts, you would perhaps have noticed that the theme has generally centered on learning from nature how to grow and evolve. This time we look at how we can dump the past behind and begin anew and the learning comes from the seed; the very heart of all growth. So you have had some bad times, some tough times, you have been pushed into the ground – just like the seed. How did the seed react? It let it come completely undone, allowed its shell to crack and from the ruins of that destruction rose again to flower, grow and bloom.

So what are the lessons for us?

When you have reached the bottom you can only grow up- give yourself a chance. – So as you close the year gone by let your attention be on the gains, the achievements, the opportunities ahead instead of the losses, the failures and regrets. This will give you a goal to focus on, a motivation to plunge ahead and the grit to keep trying till you succeed.

Even when all seems lost – keep faith; have hope.  You would definitely have faced some low and despairing times during the year gone by but the reality is that your survived it.  Perhaps the dirt through which you had been dragged helped you grow stronger, be more resilient and it was your faith in yourself that gave you the hope to wait patiently till the tide turned an d things improved.

You will grow- just ensure you grow young not old – find a rebirth in your thoughts, attitude, behavior.  At some stage the seed would have found an escape when it began to sprout. So the dark and deep abyss in which you find yourself would nourish your whole being provided you do not succumb to fear and negativity. Wait in hope, look forward in anticipation and move ahead with confidence. Align your thoughts attitude and behavior and move grow with self belief and confidence. After all, fortune favors the brave.

Grow strong roots – spread your branches – values and character will enable you to focus on your goals and success- your risk taking ability your daring to chart your own course will enable you to spread your branches. Your upbringing, your schooling, your social circle and those influencing you would play an important role in ensuring you embrace the values and character that will stand you in good stead under all circumstances. Your personal characteristics, your ambition, your hunger for growth and success would determine how wide you spread your branches.  Like the tree that offers good shade, good fruits and provides the best timber you too must grow and contribute to the world around.

Nurture yourself – like good soil, quality fertilizer and bright sunshine that sustains the seed, fill yourself with boundless energy, take affirmative action and enjoy the creative manifestations of your efforts. Growth comes from daring to emerge from the cocoon that you have to break free from. Plan, prepare and pursue your growth for that is when one can nurture the self with purpose and passion. The fruits of your labor would be definitely sweet!

Try these:

  • Write down three quotes / proverbs that you value very much.
  • What are the 3 values or qualities that you admire most in your role model?
  • What is your greatest strength and what would you consider your worst weakness?
  • What is the one criticism that you often seem to hear?
  • What is the one major achievement you would work towards in the coming 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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18- Grow like a wildflowerAs individuals, we often believe that we are not distinguished by any great characteristic or ability and that we are therefore consigned to be just a part of the crowd. Yet secretly we do nurture dreams, desires, hopes and fantasies most of it largely centered around success and achievement. Occasionally we may also venture and try to attain some of our ideals but it is with trepidation and half heartedness that we dare to attempt. We are cagey about the reactions of others to our attempt to dare, we fear criticism, we fear failure and we are aghast the thought that we may look like a fool if we don’t succeed. The sum total of these thoughts is that we either don’t dare or we make an attempt with no conviction and therefore the venture is doomed to fail.

On the other hand we are envious of numerous people around us who apparently did not have it in them to succeed (in our view) and yet have carved a niche for themselves defying all odds and predictions. We are perplexed and cannot phantom how they have succeeded. More importantly we lament our inability to leverage our talents and potential to attain something more significant in our life. What one needs to realize is that we are limited just by our own thinking, attitude and actions.  Success can be achieved by anyone who plans to succeed, dares to succeed and persists to succeed. No criticism is a dampener, no goal impossible if set right and no effort wasted, even if success seems distant when the journey begins.

So what makes ordinary people become successful?They just make the best of the opportunities available.

How do they do it?They go about their business with intensity, passion and purpose.

Can I replicate this? Of course every individual no matter what their limitation can fulfill their potential?

How can I fulfill my potential? This requires a little more detailing. Try and adopt the following:

Enjoy your work by making the work fun – Look at the wildflowers dancing in the wind. They know their job is to grow, bloom and beautify the environment. They do it with a joy that is visible in the way they brighten up the environment around. No matter what your task seek out the wonder that the job entails and make every effort to cherish both the job as well as the process and the outcome. This would require a wee bit of imaginative thinking, especially since, over a period of time, all jobs are routine, boring and repetitive in nature. Yet as human beings we have the good fortune to grow in our jobs and take on greater responsibilities, vary our jobs by changing it and also improve the quality of our jobs through automation, job rotation, work engagement etc.

Visualize yourself and your job as a blessing to be cherished not merely a duty to be done – Again the wild flower does not question what type of a flower it is or its color nor its location. It simply grows with intensity. If you have a job cherish it; look around and see the numerous jobless who are frustrated and angry. Look at your job as a privileged opportunity to be engaged and gainfully rewarded. While the job itself entitles you to be compensated for the duties you discharge, you must see it as an opportunity and blessing to fulfill your potential and being rewarded for the same.

Enliven the environment with your individuality your personality and your strength’s. – From a distance all the flowers that grow wild look alike. Yet go closer and examine and you would notice the subtle differences. Together they add color, brighten the space, make the soil come alive and yet individually they retain their differences, love themselves, flutter and sway in their own individualistic style. We humans have much more opportunity to retain our individuality and yet collective make a huge difference. Our strengths of intelligence, physically strength, inner strength, our feelings, attitudes, approach all contribute in varied ways to leave our individuality in the environment around us. All we need to do is recognize these strengths and leverage it and be aware of our limitations and acknowledge it and work around it.

Go that extra mile to make a difference – No matter what the terrain, the soil, the climatic condition and the physical risks like animals eating it up or insects destroying it, wild flowers sprout, grow and enliven the environment. What we can see and appreciate are the wild flowers that outgrew their adversity to make a difference.  As individuals each of us would have personal problems, individual limitations, doubts, fears and apprehensions. Yet we need to believe in ourselves, focus on what we can do and when needed make that extra effort to fulfill our potential. There would be setbacks, there would be criticism, there could be huge risks but like the wild flower, cling to our self belief and bloom wherever you are.

Cooperate without compromising – remain dignified – Look carefully at the wildflowers and you would see that some of them have malformed petals or partially eaten petals or a rotting stem. Yet from a distance they still sway in the wind, their colors brighten the dull foliage. They cooperate with the environment, are aware of the harsh realities but they don’t stoop and prostrate to the vagaries of nature. They retain their dignity inspite of the adversity. This is one lesson that we human beings must imbibe. Don’t succumb to temptations, pressures, criticism and threats. Cooperate with the environment around but never compromise. Be dignified; be true to your conscience, your values, your ethics and your principles. Bloom with head held high, shoulders erect and pride intact.

Enjoy life; brighten the world; make a difference to yourself and to the world around.

Try these:

  1. Identify the special characteristics / qualities that make you unique and different from your siblings/ cousins / classmates / friends. List out 3 of your strengths and identify 1 major weakness.
  2. What frustrates you the most? Do you think you can do something to alleviate your frustration? How will you go about implementing your plan to alleviate your frustration?
  3. Recollect an incident/ incidents in your life that you feel embarrassed about. Do you think you would have handled the situation differently today?

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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