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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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03-first-3-wordsOne of the problems many of us have is our inability to really identify something positive to focus upon. This is partly because our minds tend to stray towards what troubles us, our problems real and imagined and varied anxieties that we have made ‘much ado about nothing’. The problem becomes more acute at the start of the year for most of our plans/ resolutions tend to center around unfinished business, challenges to be met and overcoming our limitations. The grid above, however, has ample positives that stare at us and it would help if we focus on the first 3-5 positive words noticed and for the rest of the year align our goals to meet the goals those words beckon.

Honestly I would have loved to list out some of the words above, but then it would take away the fun for you.  Instead, my friends, I am using my power of identification to share my experience of using my time to focus on some goals that have helped me gain friends, popularity and happiness. While money is important, it is the fun of influencing lives that really drives me. The beauty of this is that, I can with all honesty confess, that I have a large circle of young friends and interacting with them makes me feel young at heart. By the way, you also need to use your time not just for yourself but also for others. Keeping busy would also ensure good health in mind and body. If you look carefully there is something positive in every line except for one word. It is not for me to identify it but yes if you have the lust for life, even that word would be positive although most times we use it in a negative context.

Have fun decoding the above and more importantly use those words to make this year a wonderful and productive year for you and all those whose lives you influence.

Try these:

The grid gives you enough to focus on. Break time for both you and me. Actually, it is break time for me just for this post; you have ample scope to keep busy for the rest of the year.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

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01-01-jan-17-new-year-new-reflectionEver thought of maintaining a happiness jar? Perhaps this year you should focus on just maintaining a happiness jar.  If you have already made your list of New Year resolutions, just make this the first one on the list. If you haven’t don’t worry; just make this the only resolution for yourself. Just see the positives that you have been blessed with week after week and you would be surprised to note how blessed you have been round the year. To make it more exciting, perhaps you could also add for yourself one or more of the following in each week’s list

  • A time when I made someone else happy.
  • A situation where I acted assertively.
  • A risk that I took that was worth it.
  • A time I said No and am happy about that decision.
  • A situation in which I failed, but learnt an important lesson.
  • A risk I took of trusting someone and he/ she turned out to be worthy of my trust.
  • You could also perhaps drop in a few coins or notes that could add to the contents of the jar and make it even more appealing when you open it.
  • As and when you get a bright idea jot it down and also drop it into the happiness jar.
  • Perhaps you could cut out a cartoon from the local newspaper or a quote you found interesting and drop that too into your happiness jar.

Try these:

  • Source a jar and some colored paper to get going. Ideally have a slit on the lid of the jar and ensure you tape the lid so that you are not tempted to open it off and on.
  • You should make an effort to  send a letter of appreciation or thanks to an old classmate/ teacher/ colleague during the course of the year and surprise them.
  • Think of 2- 3 changes that you can make to your home/ your wardrobe /  your personal style / your habits so feel a difference and enjoy the change.

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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31-are-you-a-liarTime and time again, despite our best efforts, we are overcome with a feeling of helplessness and frustration. At such times we conclude that we are worthless and that it is best we give up. Fortunately for many of us, this depressing feeling is largely temporary and we soon find the will and strength to continue with renewed vigor. However, if one continues to lapse into this self talk of worthlessness with increasing frequency, it is a sign of defeatism, a sign of weakness but most of it is a lie that we tell ourselves; no one to blame but our self!

So how does one become aware, daily, that his/ her life has a purpose, a meaning and a goal? That one’s life is a gift to be cherished; that its beauty lies in how well we can harness the potential in it and that, it is the quality of the life we lead, that is more important than the length of the lifespan.  Look at your life from the perspective of an individual who has been blessed with the power to make his/ her own choice and suddenly life takes on a new meaning. To quote Justice M.C. Chagla who in his book Roses in December concluded it with these words ‘“Life is many-sided; it has many facets; it has many moods; it is rich with memories, sad and gay. Ultimately it depends upon each one, whether life has been an adventure or just a short and painful interlude between one sleep and another.” 

To stop lying to yourself and instead make your life an adventure, you can attempt the following:

Dare to expand your horizons – We often hold ourselves back from exploring, experimenting and expanding our horizons because of our fear of failure, fear of the repercussions and fear of moving away from our comfort zone. There is always a first time for everything; so unless you try you will never know if you like it, love it or hate it. Many a time you will discover facets of yourself that are  your blind to, by merely widening your horizons and experimenting with new ideas/ thoughts / activities.

Challenge yourself daily – Never do a task in a routine manner; it gets boring, repetitive and definitely torturous after some time. While you cannot avoid the routine, you can try to add some color to the routine by finding something challenging in it; doing it differently; adding color to it. E.g. Although telephone operators are a dying breed now in the old days they used to hold a key role. Their job could get boring and routine. However I have come across telephone operators who kept themselves motivated by trying to identify the caller by their voice and style and politely greeting them when they called. I have heard of another person who was a talented artist. This person often drew a caricature of the persons who frequently called based purely on the voice of the person. If and when that person visited that office, the drawing would be gifted to the person and it had a remarkable accuracy.

Keep trying – You grow when you work smarter, do better and grow faster. The challenge is to be better than what you were yesterday. Life is not a race with others; it must be an adventure to attempt new things, dare to push your boundaries and to make things happen. So reset your goals, attempt it. If you succeed repeat the process of resetting your goals.  If you fail, try again till your attain what you set out to do.  Read the heroics of Károly Takács by clicking on the following link to know more about trying http://tinyurl.com/zgtqfx3 or  http://tinyurl.com/zbp8hry

Discover your worth – Each of us is blessed with some fine qualities, good virtues and multiple talents; discovering them may pose a challenge. While some of these blessings are easily identifiable, it is discovering the hidden blessings that become challenging. There is also a grave danger that we take for granted the blessings that are very visible and hence, when faced with an impediment or difficulty that is tricky, we lie to ourselves that we are worthless. Instead if probe a little and relook our abilities and talents we would suddenly realize that we have a lot of options still to be explored. Discover your worth and you won’t have to lie to yourself ever.

Try these:

  1. An exotic destination you would like to visit
  2. A social service activity that your keen on doing
  3. A fun activity that you would love to indulge in
  4. A new investment you would like to make
  5. A bad habit you would like to give up.

Your challenge is to put a time line on each one. Now begin with the chit with the shortest timeline and ensure you complete it before you begin the next one. It will be worth your while to seriously do it.

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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25-A new definition of ACTIONWith the Rio Olympics just around the corner, this quote is an apt reminder of the struggles, the hard work, the challenges and the passion that has driven the numerous sports persons representing their respective countries at the Olympics. For sure each of them started off with a Dream. When they march in the contingent representing their country they would have realized their dreams and the reality of the achievement will sink in when they participate in their respective event. As you read this, you too would be reflecting on various dreams that you have had and possibly wondering how you too can realize those dreams. As is obvious from the quote, all you need to do is to act on it… ACTION !

Accept the opportunity – If you know what you want, see yourself making the best use of the opportunity to attain it. For many, we have dreams but decide that the dreams are too unrealistic and so we let our dreams die without even attempting to give it a chance. If you can be genuinely passionate about your dreams, then you will make every effort to chase the dream.

Cling tenaciously to your dream. – There will be many who would chide you for your audacity to chase your dreams. There will be many who will try to dishearten you and create self doubt within you. You have to believe in your dream and cling tenaciously to it no matter what the price you have to pay. Yes, everything comes for a price and you have to be prepared to pay the price but what you get in return will be priceless.

Trust yourself – There will be times when you began with gusto and suddenly you were overwhelmed by problems and possibly you surrendered to them and gave up. Let that set back deter you from attempting again. Believe in your dreams, trust your abilities to be resilient and daring enough to pursue relentlessly. No one but you can lead your life; no one but you can realize your dream!

Innovate along the way – The dream always looks distant and the road to it long and winding. You would need to innovate and utilize all available legitimate means to be ahead of the crowd. You would need to take advice from the experts, rework your strategies, learn from competitors but all times be ethical and true to your conscience. Notice that many an athlete who used unfair means to improve their performance has come to grief. There must be both dignity and pride in realizing your dreams.

Overcome negativity – fear of failure is the biggest obstacle that prevents many a talent to blossom and showcase their talent. Criticism is another major negative emotion that can drive you to despair. Both failure and criticism are demotivators but they should not chain you to the belief that things cannot be overcome. When challenged you, you must rise above the negativity that it invariably injects in you. Falling down is not failure, failing to get up and go on is!

Next challenge – Action is not just single piece of activity. It is a continuous quest for improvement, for progress and for success. So once you surmount the initial hurdle, the next challenge must be embraced with equal enthusiasm. Those who manage to turn their dreams into reality have chased the next challenge and successfully conquered it.

Try these:

  1. Make a list of excuses you have made for not attaining something that you desperately hope to. Analyze it and work out a plan to eliminate every single excuse and give yourself another shot at realizing your dream.
  2. Make study of how you spend the 24 hours each day that you are blessed with. Can you eliminate some unnecessary waste of time, can you make some of your time even more productive, can you organize yourself better to ensure you group your activities to minimize time wastage?
  3. What is the next big fun activity that you are planning? What is the next major task that you have which you have been postponing for a while. Put a deadline on both and get cracking on achieving both within the deadline set. No excuses please!

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- Being resourceful is the keyWhen confronted with a challenge, a problem, a dilemma, a threat, an obstacle or danger, chances are that we would furiously think of ways to mitigate the issue. This is normal human reaction for that is how we are psychologically conditioned to act.  The issue is actually what we do next. Many of us give up daring to execute our plans for fear of failure. Some would simply give up even trying to identify a solution rationalizing that the circumstance confronting us is far beyond our own ability to cope up with. There would be others who make half hearted attempts to at least postpone the inevitable, in the fond hope of the matter resolving itself over time. The circumstances confronting you are not your enemy. Being afraid to think and act is the real enemy.

Being resourceful is all about thinking quick and acting purposefully. In fact thinking quick is often a natural reaction. However, we tend to keep prejudging our thoughts, ideas, alternatives and opportunities thereby largely neutralizing the power of those immediate thoughts. Acting purposefully is a bigger challenge for we normally tend to react to circumstances rather than act with a clear plan in mind. So is resourcefulness just a matter of generating alternative solutions? Ideating and creativity are just one tool for being resourceful albeit a critical and important tool. Resourcefulness goes far beyond merely thinking up alternatives. It is setting up yourself to triumph over circumstances.

Here are some pointers to being resourceful and using them to overcome the obstacles that confront you.

Believe in yourself – The first thought that often comes to mind when confronted with a challenge is oh no. This is quickly followed by thoughts that revolve around Why me? Can I? This is terrible. I can’t cope with this. It is unfair. It is important to remember that every individual does face challenges at various times in varied degrees and the challenges cover a wide spectrum. One either copes with the challenge or gets overcome by the challenge. The first step to coping with a problem is to believe that you have the mental, physical and emotional strength to find a solution. Unless you believe in yourself you would not seek to find a solution.

Think/ ideate / be creative / visualize– Thinking holds the key to generating solutions. It could be logical or rational thinking, it could be creative thinking, it could be idea generation or it could be visualizing big and narrowing to specifics. There is a solution and I can find it must be the mantra. The solution could be completely off beat, it could be risky, it may require a tremendous leap of faith or it could be so very simple you start doubting its efficacy. Look at all the technological wonders around you and you would realize that each of them is a marvel in itself. More importantly each improvement is actually a solution to a problem that was worked out by someone who believed they could find a solution.

Create the right environment to act The toughest part of being resourceful is reassuring yourself constantly that you are capable, competent and clear about your resourcefulness paying off. Sometimes it would be the nagging doubts in your mind, other times it could be the nay sayers who discourage you, occasionally it would be those days when nothing seems to go right and mostly it would be the let me give up feeling that comes like waves of a nausea. To cope with this it is essential that you create the right environment. This includes simple things like ensuring you have the right tools to work with, the physical environment suits your temperament, you bounce ideas of people who will give you dispassionate and encouraging feedback, you brace yourself to dealing with failure, your tune your mind to find encouragement in the smallest success that you attain.

Act decisively to attain your objective – This the toughest part of being resourceful because this requires daring and is test of yourself belief. Just as one cannot cross a chasm in two steps, acting decisively means taking a giant leap of faith. The plans on the drawing board would remain just that, till they are translated into concrete action. There are no auspicious moments, no perfect time to begin. Making that commitment by beginning ensures that you will make those extra efforts to keep going. It is possible that you will be tempted to rethink, to reassess, to go back to the drawing board, to give up, to start differently but once you get the momentum it is a commitment that will linger and persist and draw you back to continue.

If at first you don’t succeed, start again. Very few have ever succeeded in their first attempt. However, it is those who didn’t give up their quest for success who ultimately triumph. Few plans pan out the way they are planned. There would be detours, there would be complications, there could be road blocks, there could be frustration and there will be discouragement. Keep your goal in mind. It must be sufficiently big enough to motivate but not so large that you are overawed by the challenge. Most importantly you must enjoy the journey. Be desperate, determined and driven; then you will be resourceful enough to see your dream come through no matter how long it takes or how many attempts it takes.

Try this:

  • Can you think of unique ways to celebrate your birthday or that of a close friend or family member?
  • During the coming week, check out the various cultural activities that will take place in your city and attend at least 2 such activities that you have never even been too. Identify 2 new things you learned in the process and find a way to implement it or utilize it.
  • From the various posts in your social media sites list out 5 posts that caught your imagination. Of these are there any that you think you can replicate or adapt to make the world around you a better place?
  • If you had the resources to start a social service initiative what would you start? How would your initiative be different from those existing? Even without the resources can you implement some of the unique ideas you have in mind?

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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1 - 5 Jan 16 A new Year MessageSo you and I begin a New Year 2016 with a lot of hope, a bit of trepidation and tons of goodwill from many! What one needs to quickly realize though, is that it is MY life and only I can make it the best one I can. Ideally we hope this year will be a lot better than the one gone by. We ponder over our mistakes and regrets of the past, we mentally note down the yardstick of others that become our benchmark for success and we rush into life aiming to win; little realizing that we are competing only with ourselves and all we need to do is challenge ourselves to excel.

Let us pause and ponder over a few life lessons to enable us to journey with a purpose, with joy in the heart, exuding the fragrance of our unique personality and contributing to creating a better world around us.

Life is a journey not a destination – We subconsciously realize this because while we do have aspirations we rarely limit ourselves to merely realizing our aspirations. Once we attain what we aimed for we reset our aspirations higher. This is a good practice for it allows us to pace and realize our progress. Unfortunately, most times we are consciously chasing goals that are not pragmatically designed but developed with materialistic considerations in mind. We tend to believe that if we attain that destination happiness would be ours. Alas, in pursuit of those materialistic goals, we do not enjoy the joys of life, fail to appreciate the blessings we have and instead keep craving for more. The key to life is to make the most of what one has.

There are no mistakes just chances we have taken – You cannot cross a chasm in two steps; so when we come to the chasms in daily life we have to either jump or turn back. At times we misjudge the width of the chasm other times we mistimed our jump or we overestimate our ability or we were unprepared to take that leap; in all the above cases we would have failed to clear the chasm. We would also fail we did not believe in ourselves and turned away. The times we have cleared the chasm and the times we deliberately and consciously refused to take the chance only to realize later that it was the best decision you made, are the only times one succeeds. In daily life the chasms are invisible, the skills sets required opaque, the decision making has to be quick and continuous and the results may not always equal your expectations. You just have to keep taking those chances for some of them could be the giant leap that can propel you to a different level.

Make the most of the moment without wasting time on regrets – The worst mistake one can make is to go back in time and keep wallowing in the misery of the regrets we have, If only is a common enough refrain that suggests that things would have been different and life much better. We keep wondering about the possible outcome if the choices we made were different. A decision made a point in time can neither be reversed nor can the consequences be altered. Not doing anything is also a decision. The reality is that we cannot escape our responsibility nor stew in our regrets. What we can do and must do is make every moment count.

Life is not a competition but a mere challenge – Your life is a challenge for you to cope with and not a competition with the next person around you. Each of us is blessed with unique talents, abilities and capabilities. What we need to do is be aware of our strengths and ensure we utilize it to the full. We fail because we do not run our race but pace ourselves using the others around us as pacemakers. If you are a sprinter and follow a marathon runner, you are bound to fail. Similarly if you a middle distance runner and use a sprinter as the your benchmark failure is certain. Success come only when you get up and keep running no matter what. It helps to plan well, pace yourself as per your abilities and push yourself to your limits. The challenge in life is to run your own unique race well.

Make life fun as you get serious work done – Most people go through life as if on a life saving mission. Reality is that everyone has to earn his/ her living. So then why not make that living while enjoying it. True there are periods of stress and turbulence but they are far few and in between, Do we really make the best use of the rest of our time to ensure that we make our life fun, our living a joy and the world we live in a heaven on earth? Do we laugh enough, can we enjoy a relaxed environment, do we pause to smell the flowers, do we have time to stand and stare? Can I experience bliss every moment of my life?

Each new dawn gives us another opportunity – So what are you going to do with the opportunity? Would you size it or squander it? Begin today, begin now by jotting down your goals for the year. Jot down all the things that you believe will make you happy. Outline the action you would take to overcome your weakness. Commit yourself to some unique experiences that you hope to have during the course of the year. List out 3-5 friends who you would surprise this year with a unique gift. Gift yourself an expensive gift this year (write down what you really want). There is so much more that I can do each day.

Try this:

Fill in the following list for yourself

  • A unique musical program that you will attend this year
  • An animal / bird that you will sponsor this year at the local zoo
  • A new skill set that you would like to acquire
  • A place that you will visit from amongst the following ; a hospice / a prison / a mental asylum
  • Three changes you will bring in to your daily life to make your healthier/ wealthier/wiser
  • Five people with whom you have lost touch but would reconnect with this year
  • A fund raiser in which you would participate and the amount of funds you plan to raise.

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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