Category: Time Management

Self discipline – A key learning from the lockdown

Self discipline – A key learning from the lockdown

If you are reading this, consider yourself exceptionally lucky. You have survived the Covid 19 , the lockdown but more importantly (except if you have been a frontline warrior) you have been fortunate to have been gifted a once in a life time opportunity, to have all the time in the world to do very many things that you did postpone in the past for lack of time. Look up your New Year resolutions that you outlined not too long ago. Go through your checklist of pending tasks and the ‘to do this year’ tasks. So, how much did you achieve during the lockdown? Do you regret that the lockdown opportunity was not grasped by you?

If you have very many regrets that you wasted your time and the opportunity to get a lot of things done you have only yourself to blame. More importantly you have to blame your poor self discipline for having wasted this opportunity of a life time. Well everything is not lost. From all indications, the lockdown may get extended for many and so it is time to become self disciplined and at least now make use of the time at our disposal more fruitfully.

Here are some tips to be self disciplined:

Have a good routine for every day – The first thing to keep in mind is that a lockdown is NOT a holiday. In fact it is a regular day for you and for quite a few who are not on work from home, the only issue is that there is no specific job to be done. That is precisely why you need to have a good routine so that you fill up the available time doing all the important jobs you kept pending. It is also a time to give yourself more time for pursuing your own pursuits that you kept in abeyance because you lacked the time. Do you have an hourly schedule drawn up at least for 8 -10 hours. You can add your normal commute time in addition as bonus time. Now you have a clear cut agenda for yourself. Inbuilt time to pursue your hobbies, to learn a new skill, experiment with something that you have craved for etc.

Visualize a motivation to follow the routineYou will find it hard to follow your routine unless you have some strong motivation that pulls you to do it. Obviously in most cases the real motivation will be intrinsic motivation since you do not get any major tangible outcomes for doing what you are passionate about. In fact, the trick to be motivated is searching for and identifying the intrinsic motivators for every task you commit yourself to. You will find that the quality of your work is always much better, the urge to do it well much stronger and the outcomes always positively stimulating. Alternatively it must be driven by a fear that you have ( which could be as simple as committing to your kids or your better half or significant one that you hope to do xyz next day). You can be sure they will follow up on your progress and fear of failing them would be a good way to be self disciplined.

Minimize distractionsThe most common cause of lack of self discipline is pleasurable distractions. For the tech savvy generation gadgets of all types, with the mobile phone being the chief culprit are the major source of distractions. Then there are other distractions like lure of indulging in any activity that gives instant gratification be it light reading or playing games or indulging in personal hobbies etc. The best way to overcome distractions is to make a serious effort to distance the source of distraction from you. You should ensure that your mobile phone or the sports gear or the light reading material is never anywhere close to you when you are following your routine. The more difficult it is to access it, the higher the chances of you being self disciplined. Incidentally, ensure your work environment is conducive to productive work. The work environment must be well lit, well ventilated, neat and tidy etc.

Experience the’ feel good’ from the progress made The progress made because of self motivation must not only be experienced by you but you must learn to cherish it. Every little progress is a step forward towards success. Value every small success because it motivates you to remain focused and self disciplined. Be aware also that initial progress can be slow, takes a lot of effort and the output barely noticeable. That is when yourself belief will keep you on course. Your self belief is what helps beings the journey and your progress and success is what helps fuel your self discipline.

Make no excusesNo matter what the situation, never make an excuse for not committing to your routine. Like marriage vows, in good times and in bad, in good health and in sickness, you are married to your commitment. No excuse can be tolerated. In the rare instance where you miss out on your commitment make up for it by working more at the first opportunity. Remember that self discipline means self sacrifice too. Your time is finite and you have to allocate it appropriately, often at the cost of more agreeable alternatives that you need to sacrifice.

Be self disciplined and achieve anything you set your mind to.

Try these:           

  1. You are to commit raising a certain amount as your contribution to a relief fund. You decide the amount but no amount can be contributed from your personal funds or by raising funds by disposing off your belongings. You have to raise the amount as donations from anybody without giving any commitment to them about you returning the favor or indicating that this is a task you have taken up as a challenge.
  2. What would be a real surprise for your best friend or spouse? There mu.st be a significant cost or effort  by you attached to the surprise Can you ensure you surprise them on any occasion before the year end?
  3. What is the one thing new you gained because of the time you got all for yourself during this lockdown. It should not be materialistic but it could be in terms of new knowledge, skills, relationships, insights, self discovery etc.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Adopt the pace of nature

20-8-06 Apr20- Adopt the pace of nature

With everyone cooped at home feeling frustrated, fearful and frantic for some respite, it is perhaps apt that we take a lesson from nature; adopting the pace of nature, her secret is patience.

In the first place, one must realize that if we had adopted natures pace and not usurped our natural resources indiscriminately, our progress would have been slow and steady. Since we chose to be belligerent with our intellect, unsatiated by our greed and disrespectful of nature’s bounty, we have been dealt a knockout punch by nature itself. Ironically nature itself has hastened her pace to spread the illness, perhaps as a timely reminder to us mortals that nature has its own way of balancing out and steam rolling mans ego, pride and cocking a snook at so called technological advancement.

Now that we have been held in a vice like grip by nature’s fury and locked in, it is the ideal time to humbly go back to nature and gain the most valuable lesson that secret of life lies in patiently living life.

So now learn to value your time; yes those 24 hours now seem like 48 hours each day. However you can make it feel like a mere 12 hours if you can have control over your time and by being self disciplined.

Be patient with your surroundings; however big a house you have you have to confine yourself within that space; suffocating is it? Did you even pause and think if we were being cruel to cage wild animals? In nature the big trees, the creepers, the shrubs all have adapted to living side by side. In many cases they have adapted to benefit from those around even though it seems like a contradiction of sorts. It is a similar sort of situation for us. Perhaps we feel claustrophobic; maybe we feel overwhelmed by the challenges of keeping our surroundings clean. Be patient and  adapt; have a system in place; be disciplined and you will have control over the environment around you.

Value the presence of those around you. Perhaps, for many, this is the first time you are spending so much of time in close proximity with no alternative but to be with them. Without them your life would have been even more morose, terribly boring, certainly silent and definitely suffocating. If you have a tough time adjusting to them remember they are doing their best to adjust with you. Perhaps you have learned many varied facets of the individuals around you; things you took for granted or qualities you never knew they had. Most of all you may realize that love is the one emotion that given out in large measure comes back in double that measure.

Learn patiently to endure and adapt. Evolution was nature’s way of patiently adapting to the changing environment. Now that you have all the time in the world to do all what you want to do are really utilizing your time well?  You may argue that you are unable to move out and do things. If you were incapacitated physically the situation would have been the same; so now learn to adapt and find new ways of being engaged fruitfully and remaining happy. Many of us are fortunate to have the technology, the resources and the knowledge be engaged in a whole lot of activities that the less fortunate are not privy too. We also have the financial resources to cope with the challenges of being unemployed, not having the income streams and not having to beg for our daily food. Can we then stop being impatient with the temporary hardships and lack of fun activities and learn to appreciate the good fortune we are blessed with?

Try these:           

  • Can you share some innovate tips about how you improved the environment around you when in the lock down?
  • Make a list of appreciative qualities that you began to value in those around you.
  • How did you imaginatively use the time that the lock down forcibly thrust upon you? Did you make any personal discoveries about your own self?
  • What was the most frustrating part of the lock down for you? How did you cope with it?

You can email your responses to 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

Making dreams come true

Making dreams come true

All of us at various times have a wide variety of dreams and fantasies. There are some dreams that seem to come back with regularity and at times they also become day dreams. They are largely connected with happiness, success, achievement, appreciation, recognition and similar positive images. The problem is that for most of us, these remain pipe dreams that we do not translate into concrete achievements that can embrace those positive emotions. The problem is not with the dreams but our inability to cross the chasm between dreams and reality. The steps are crystal clear, the difficulty is our inertia. Overcome that inertia and do the following:

Turn dreams to goals – Wake up and if you can visualize your dream then you are definitely getting somewhere. Grab a pen and paper and jot down the dream not in a fanciful way but in a concrete pragmatic way.  E.g. you dreamt that you stood first in class. Reality is that currently you have a backlog and are in the bottom half of the class. Now to make your dream a goal, be pragmatic. Jot down your goal as ‘clear my back log and get 20 % more marks in all subjects than my previous score.’ Notice that your goal is more tangible than merely imagining standing first.

Break down every goal into action plans – This is even more crucial then jotting down your goal. Now you are making your goal a SMART goal by being more Specific about the steps to be taken (how will you plan a study time table, what subjects would you pay more attention too etc.) , Using a Measure ( in this case score), ensuring that it is Attainable ( you should not try to achieve ridiculous things beyond your ability like saying scoring 80% in all subjects because current performance standards are way below that), be Realistic ( if you are currently studying  only on the previous day of the exam it would be foolhardy to imagine yourself studying for 8 hours every day ) and ensure your goal is clearly Time bound. Of course, the example given is for an average person but there could be people who have a much more steely resolve and the ability to cope with bigger challenges that they map out for themselves.

Take action – All the goals and action plans turn to successful results only when one takes the action required. Taking action means you need to find the right motivation ( ideally intrinsic motivation), develop the right attitude ( avoid all distractions, remain focused, do not give into temptations ) and remain enthusiastic ( reward yourself for the small success you encounter when you stick to your action plans) and then do what you have to do to achieve your goal ( in this case regular study, practice regularly, revise frequently, )

Try these:          

  1. List out three personal weaknesses you want to overcome. Now write down your smart goals to achieve it and see tangible results in the next 3 months.
  2. Write down your goals and action plan for the following:
  • To increase your savings
  • To improve your fitness
  • To minimize your social media addiction
  • To develop your social circle

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Is it today?

Is it today?

All good intent comes to naught, when one does not put the intent into practice or begin acting on the plans. We have lofty goals in mind, sit back and plan, decide on a day, date and time to act but when crunch time comes, we have numerous excuses for delaying beginning it. In fact the real problem begins at the goal setting stage. We rarely commit ourselves to outlining the goals in writing. On the rare times we do write down some goals, they are more or less one line statements which are more in the nature of expressing a dream / desire than a commitment. Often the statements are peppered with adjectives that make the goal sound lofty whilst the core remains hollow. One technique to ensure one writes down actionable goals is the SMART goal technique. If you are not aware of this technique or are only have a hazy idea of it,  you can google it and read up on the same. (This would be the first test of how committed you are to writing down actionable goals.)

The next step is critical because we do not spend adequate time planning out and chalking out the blueprint of how to go about achieving each goal. This is not a short ten minute exercise. It is actually a test of your passion for the goal you have set. You would need to mull over your goal, the challenges you will face, reflect on your personal limitations that you would need to set right, identify milestones that will indicate that you are on the right track and that you are keeping up to the schedule planned. In planning out your blueprint, you will also make sure you will not compromise on your ethics and values in pursuit of the goal.

Finally it is crunch time, when you have to walk the talk. You will need to begin as planned; no excuse will be good enough for any deferment. If you defer, you will have to go back to the drawing board and rethink your plans for you have not made provisions for contingencies. Your entire SMART goal hinges on the last alphabet T which stands for TIME. Your goal is time bound and this can be achieved only if you begin on time and progress as per your time schedule. Beginning on time is just a blip in the scheme of things; it is sticking to the time schedule till you attain your goal that is the real elephant that you have to eat slice by slice to ensure you have eaten it all. Each day therefore becomes day one of the next step of your plan.

To get your plans off the ground ask yourself ‘When am I going to begin? If the answer is ‘I will start one day ‘ be sure that day will not be in the foreseeable future. On the other hand if you say ‘Day one is here, let me begin now’ you would have created the momentum that you can maintain with the right motivation, an eye on the goal and feet on the ground running. It is your choice to ask and answer the question ‘Is it today that I begin to realize my dreams?

Try these:           

  • When are you going to write the letter to the editor of a newspaper, putting forth your views on a social problem that you are most upset about?
  • What and when will be your next attempt at doing something that you have never attempted before?
  • When will you start making new friends at work/ the neighborhood / when travelling?
  • When will you write a letter to or visit a favorite teacher to convey your appreciation?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Choosing the right pain

Choosing the right pain

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Try these:                 

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

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

One change at a time

8-one-change-at-a-time

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

The four essentials for transformation are:

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

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

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

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

Try these:

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

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Two simple steps to make each day count

13-27- Two simple steps to make each day countPause for a moment and look back at the days gone by. Do you get the feeling that you could have a lot more if only we could re-live those days again? While regret for those days gone by wont help us now except to trigger a realization, we can make the best of today and the days to come that we will be fortunate to experience and enjoy. The trick lies in finding a way to wake up with determination and to go to bed with satisfaction.

So how does this mantra work?

A firm determination will …
Spark the desire for accomplishment
Fan the fires of enthusiasm
Light up the way ahead

When you go to bed with satisfaction you
Revel in the pleasure of achievement
Move closer to your cherished goals
Enjoy the bliss of sound sleep

ELSE

Without determination you will…
Be indecisive and anxious
You will a lot of incomplete tasks on hand
You will tend to give up at the first hint of trouble / difficulty

When you go to bed dissatisfied …
You will fret and fume over the wasted day
You will be left with too many irons on the fire and be stressed
Life will seem labored, insipid, stressed and painful every single night.

SO

To be determined
Have written down SMART goals (Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Realistic, Time bound)
Be organized and time conscious
Find a strong motivation to start and finish the task.

To ensure a satisfactory day end
Review the day before going to bed; enjoy the success of the day and work out ways to cope with the tasks left undone
Break down major tasks into smaller specific goals
Ensure your full quota of sleep and a clear conscience is said to be the best pillow.

Try this:

Make a list of the following

  • The tasks that you hate but which is unavoidable
  • The one task that is relatively easy but you constantly not doing it on time
  • The tasks that you enjoy doing the most
  • The one task that you would like to delegate to your best friend

Write down your reasons/ excuses for

  • Not doing the TRY THIS tasks in the previous post
  • Indulging in what you are constantly criticized for by family and or friends and or colleagues
  • Not making a sizeable financial contribution to your favorite charity
  • Being less successful than what you think you are capable of

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com
You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog
www.poweract.blogspot.com

An effective way to make New Year Resolutions

At the outset let me thank all my readers, blog followers and well wishers for your encouragement, feedback and support over the past two years.

Let me also wish each one of you a Very Happy and Prosperous New Year 2012

“Clothe with life the weak intent, let me be the thing I meant.” John Greenleaf Whittier

Every individual resolves to make at least one resolution during the New Year, which he/she hopes to faithfully adhere too during the course of the year.  In reality many of us actually have more than one hope, expectation, resolution that we secretly aim to achieve. The overwhelming majority of us, unfortunately end up with regrets and excuses for either completely abandoning most of the resolutions or vainly attempting a few. This is invariably followed by a temporary fervor to once again make a fresh set of resolutions and a short lived attempt at it. Are there ways and means to help one achieve one’s resolutions? Outlined is a 5 step method to go about making resolutions that can be achieved.

Think carefully write clearly. Resolutions are nothing but goals ones sets for oneself. Obviously therefore one must think carefully, ponder insightfully and commit wholeheartedly by writing down the resolution. Many of us have a vague notion of a goal e.g. make more money or get a good job or enhance my savings. The adjectives only obfuscate our real desires. Instead make the resolution more tangible so that one can visualize it clearly. Spell out the money you want the type of job and work environment in mind or put a number in real terms or as a percentage of income that one seeks to save.

Allocate a time slot for each resolution. If for example one wants to increase the savings then one needs to carefully record expenses or find alternatives to increase income. This cannot be done as a casual exercise but can be achieved if it is well entrenched in our regular routine.  A fixed time allocated to record expenses will bring about the disciple also to collect bills as well as make you think twice before you actually spend. Similarly one would explore alternatives to enhance income only if one seriously sits down and explores possibilities.

Make a commitment aloud. This does not mean shouting from the roof tops (this can also help too) but refers to ensuring that the written goals are keep visible so that one is often forced to look at it. Maybe a copy of it can be pasted on the mirror on your room or a small list put in your wallet or the list is put on your computer as a start up icon that pops up on booting. An alternative is to actually share some of your resolutions with close friend and well wishers who can keep reminding you of it off and on.

Never let slippages become excuses. For various reasons, despite ones best efforts one may not be able to faithfully adhere to the time slots allocated. Many of us take that first slippage as a fatal failure and let tardiness and casualness overcome us. This is a fatal mistake. Never let such slippages bind you in its clutches. Instead be aware of the slippages and make a determined effort to double your efforts next time around. E.g. If you plan to learn a musical instrument and because of a bout of flu you were forced to miss a week of class do not give up completely.

Inbuilt a success acknowledgement. Every individual needs to relish every success that comes ones way. The same holds true with the small victories and the large triumphs that involve ones numerous resolutions. If we have shared our resolutions with others and we share the progress too then the sharing itself gives one a high and more often than not the congratulatory responses adds to ones elation and reinforces ones resolve. Other times take stock of one’s progress and visualize the distance one has travelled to achieving ones goal.

Remember: “Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.”  Benjamin Franklin

Try this:

  1. Here is a PPT that was shared with me which gives you some Positive Thoughts to keep in mind this New Year 2012. You can make this your first resolution for the New Year. Think about the positives
  2. Jot down 3 resolutions each, under the following heads
  • Personal resolutions
  • Career related resolutions
  • Social commitment resolution
  • Financial oriented resolutions

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Discovering the real YOU.

Do you want to know who you are? Don’t ask. Act! Action will delineate and define you. Thomas Jefferson

Many of us spend a lot of time pondering over the future and going around in circles confused and fearful about our fate. We shy away from finding out answers to some fundamental questions like

  • Who am I and how do I hope to shape my future?
  • What do I want to do with my life?
  • What are those values and qualities I cherish?
  • What are the fears that torment me?
  • Who are the people I can depend upon?
  • What are my yardsticks for success?
  • How do I go about achieving success?

Obviously there are no easy answers that will emerge in a jiffy but if we dismiss these questions as impossible to answer, the questions would keep lurking n our mind and torment us thereby impeding our productivity, happiness and peace of mind.

The answers to all the questions seem hidden, obscure and / or elusive but in reality they are merely packaged within the individual personality that you are. If you want to discover it, you would need to see yourself as a package doing the rounds in a game of ‘passing the parcel’ where a dimension of you is subtly revealed when you are vulnerable, exploited, hurt, abused or manhandled like the parcel, by those you interact and deal with. When every layer of the parcel is peeled out and you delve deeper and deeper, suddenly the parcel opens up to throw up a surprise gift ‘YOU”

The practical way out to discover yourself now is to unravel the real you and that can be done when you Act with Purpose, Ponder with Insight and Accept the reality with Grace.

Act with purpose : While our formative years were by and large guided and molded by parents, elders and teachers, our dependence on them will reduce as the years go by and we grow up to be mature individuals. Hopefully we would have accepted sane advice and guidance and focused on our values, education, manners, career choice etc. when we begin to furrow our own path our upbringing should discipline us make choices with positive purpose. The learning both formal and informal, our intelligence, our experience, the feedback we receive, the risks we take, the options we avoid are all partly subconscious but largely a purposeful goal driven activity. In effect we never idle away our time or waste our resources but act with purpose to achieve our goals.

Ponder with Insight: Of and on we do tend to look back and wonder about the twists and turns in our life and occasionally we would lament and rue some mistakes and lost opportunities and also be pleased about those right moves we made. Often we will keep analyzing the present, keep attempting to improve up on the existing and make efforts to learn, improve, adjust and adapt to the changes that we experience, perceive or imagine.  We would simultaneous also look ahead and with the wisdom of past experience, the knowledge of the current trends and the applying our commonsense and foresight, ponder with insight and plan for the present and future. Without realizing we would have discovered some key competencies, some harsh realities and the real facts about ourselves.

Accept the reality with Grace: Where we fail is in accepting the reality of our personality. We would need to enthusiastically accept our strengths, our abilities, our talents and our potential and leverage them to raise the bar of personal excellence. Tougher still is the challenge of accepting the reality of our limitations, our weakness, our insipid temperament and our irrational fears which curb our risk taking,  restrict our horizons and expose our inadequacies.  Once we learn to accept the reality of our personality with grace we would have discovered the secret of how to find happiness within ourselves.

Begin to be now what you will be hereafter.  William James

Try this:

How would you rate yourself on a scale of 1-10 (1 being very poor and 10 being excellent) your abilities on. Now ask your spouse or sibling or close associate to do a similar rating for you. Compare the results.

  • Managing your time
  • Taking decisions
  • Interacting with people
  • Handling crisis
  • Being creative

Download the attached file Human Emotions  and from the list of emotions list out 5 Positive Emotions and 5 Negative Emotions that are typical of you. Now for emotion that you have listed give a suitable example from your life to make sure the emotion has been experienced by you. Next take a print of the file and show it to the following people and ask them to outline those emotions which in their view are applicable to you. You may make some revealing realities about yourself from the replies of others.

  • A family member (preferably a sibling)
  • A close friend
  • A colleague
  • An old school chum
  • A new acquaintance (they have to judge your emotions based on your interactions)

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Dear Friends,

Today’s post is very different from the normal posts. I am taking this opportunity to share with some salient features of this blog and to update you about how it has shaped up over the last year and a half. For me, the very thought that I have managed to last so long in my quest to share with you some Inspirational and Motivational content is both  an exhilarating feeling and a humbling thought. Exhilarating because this blog has achieved a milestone of over 70,000 views and 500 followers in this realtively short span of time.  A BIG THANK YOU to EACH of you who visit the blog and especially for the 500 odd ardent followers of this blog. I am humbled by the realization that but for your encouragement, this blog would never have reached these milestones.  A special thank you to the many followers, who have given their comments, rated the blog and passed on the links to friends and contacts.

In January 2010 when this blog began, I kept an ambitious target of writing every single day. The first few days were heady for in the initial enthusiasm I was able to keep writing daily. Reality soon hit me hard, when within a few weeks, the effort became laborious, the ideas stopped flowing and the rather forlorn thought that no one was reading my blog became a big dampener. Fortunately for me a few colleagues, some friends and surprisingly a number of strangers soon signed on as followers and then overnight I felt responsible to ensure that they were given their daily fix of Inspirational and Motivational inputs. I am proud that in the first 365 days I managed to write for a good 340 days or so and some of the days I didn’t post was simply because I was overseas then.

This year 2011, I have cut down my posts drastically. The strain of writing everyday was a wee bit too much and once I had proved to myself that I could write every single day, the challenge was missing too. More importantly, there have been other commitments that have taken centre stage and so the blog has had to bear the brunt of it. I am not too disappointed though primarily because I also got some feedback that there was reader fatigue since the daily posts saturated their ability to imbibe the contents, attempt the Try This and experience the learning. I also noticed a steady drop in feedback and rating which to my mind also signaled an overdose of the blog. However there have been a few ardent fans who have kept inquiring why I have cut down on the blog posts and they have reinforced the belief that my work is not in vain. The sudden spurt in followers over the last couple of months has also been very encouraging. I shall definitely be writing the blogs, perhaps twice a week.

I would welcome FEEDBACK from each one of you about the blogs, my sharing today and would welcome both bouquets and brickbats if any. I would urge you to continue to patronize the blog, spread word about it to those who you feel will benefit from the contents and be assured that I shall continue to pontificate as before.

I take this opportunity to Thank Each One of YOU once again for your support, patronage and appreciation  of both www.actspot.wordpress.com and www.poweract.blogspot.com

Wishing each of you success in your endeavors and in having a fulfilling life filled with love, happiness and contentment.

Warm regards

B.Jacob

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com