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Archive for the ‘Worry’ Category

35- 29 Sept 17- Drop the trashOver years we accumulate a lot of knowledge, experiences and wisdom, yet we often ignore the basics. We need to de-clutter out minds, our hearts and cleanse ourselves of toxic emotions. We are forced to de-clutter our mobile phones when the memory is full yet when it comes to ourselves, we are not even aware of the need to adopt a similar approach. Midway through this year is a good time to spruce up our inner self so that we focus on the second half of the year with positive emotions, a forgiving heart and a wondrous attitude of hope.

Here are some pointers on what to drop, so as to de-clutter our life:

Regret – Perhaps one of the most common feelings experienced by everyone at some time or the other. The problem with regret is that we mull over what could have been rather than what we can. The past cannot be changed and yet it seems to unduly influence our thoughts, our actions and our future. We can of course learn from the mistakes we regret but one must not  make it the fulcrum of our future.

Hurt – We are hurt because we allow the feeling to pervade into our psyche. One cannot control the actions or responses of others. Equally importantly we need to recognize that each individual has his/ her own context and emotions which influence their responses.  While it is natural to take offence and feel hurt when actions or responses from others physically or emotionally scar us, the challenge is to get over the hurt quickest and forgive those who have hurt us.

Guilt – Knowingly or unknowingly we are all prone to make mistakes. The mistakes we make consciously e.g. losing our temper or being foul mouthed are more likely to leave us with a deep sense of guilt. At times some mistakes we make are a result of our inability to be strong and resist the forces that we know are wrong but powerful.

Fear – We have both rational fears and irrational fears. Rational fears are more in the nature of preparing for possibilities based on past experience, current facts and a reasonable anticipation of the future. However, most of our fears are imaginary and largely irrational. We fear the future as a catastrophy that can overcome us much and it is largely driven by the fear of superstitious beliefs. The future is rather unpredictable but we can, based on experience and intelligence prepare to face the future with a reasonable degree of confidence.

Anger – This is an emotion that is partly individualistic but largely driven by stress, fear and irrationality. Getting angry at a traffic jam or at a very small child who indulges in some disagreeable behavior is neither healthy for the person getting angry nor is it going to produce any positive outcome. Anger is good emotion when sparingly indulged in, for there could be both meaning and reasonability that produces desired outcome.  Flying off the handle at the slightest pretext is a futile waste of a strong emotion and a serious impediment to developing good relationships.

Shame – We have all gone through some embarrassing moments. However, some happenings could have caused us more pain in terms of embarrassment and consequentially we can never live down the accompanying shame. Failing and repeating a class is often the epitome of embarrassment during school days. Yet, the fact is over time no one really cares or highlights that aspect and instead they focus on how the person has evolved. As an adult in a moment of weakness one could have indulged in some unethical practices or behavior. The stigma will be hard to erase but that does not mean the individual cannot change for the better. While we must never forget our indiscretions, we must not let it be a major scar in the form of shame that overshadows our potential.

See how carefree and energetic you feel once you can de-clutter your life by getting rid of the unwarranted intrusions that subconsciously invade your mind.

Try these

  • What are the three most personally embarrassing situations that you have encountered? What percentage of blame do you allot to yourself for the said situation?
  • Outline three situations that anger you immediately. How often do you encounter it? What is the antidote to cope with your anger?
  • During the past few years which fears have you got over? Which fears still haunt you? How do you propose to confront the fears that still haunt you?
  • Do you regret hurting someone on purpose? When was the last time you forgave someone who wronged 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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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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23- Five things to quitOften people wonder what they need to do to set things right in their life. Perhaps each of us is guilty of indulging in one or more of the following, as a result of which we fail to realize our full potential.

Trying to please everyone:  We find it difficult to disappoint people. So we agree to the plans set by others even at the cost of having to make major adjustments that could impact our plans. In some cases we commit, although we are aware that we may not be able to honor our commitment. As a result we get annoyed with ourselves for giving in when we really should not have. We start resenting those who forced us into agreeing with their plans. We feel overburdened and pressurized. At times we fail to meet our commitments because we were busy trying to accommodate others.. You cannot accommodate everyone! Learn to say NO if the situation warrants it

Fearing Change: Everyone loves the status quo because we have reasonable control over what is happening. Change is therefore looked upon as potential danger, a possible threat and a definite inconvenience. We therefore find out excuses to avoid change of any sort. Actually change offers us opportunities to discover our potential, holds out promise to leap frog into something more spectacular and can often also help get away from the drudgery and irritable aspects of the existing  situation. Bear in mind that Change is the only constant in life.

 Living in the past: The good old days are symptomatic of how we get entrapped in the cage of the past. Perhaps life was simpler then but we take for granted the gifts of progress that has made our life a wee bit more comfortable. Living in the past also weighs us down from soaring and embracing new opportunities and possibilities. The past cannot be undone nor can it be re lived. While we may reminiscence about it off and on, we cannot let the past make us a prisoner of it. As Longfellow elucidates eloquently in his poem the Psalm of Life ‘Trust no Future, howe’er pleasant!    Let the dead Past bury its dead!  Act,— act in the living Present!    Heart within, and God o’erhead!

Putting yourself down :  From childhood we are taught to be modest and humble. This is a good quality to imbibe. However, when we let our modesty envelope us, we begin to shy away from praise and appreciation. We feel embarrassed when others laud our achievements. At times we try to play down our contribution so much so that we try to draw attention of others to what we could have done better and how we didn’t do enough. Accept credit with humility; showcase your achievements with pride; enjoy the accolades you deserve.  

Overthinking : We do not achieve as much as we possibly can for one simple reason. We think too much about the what’s and if’s and but’s instead of working in earnest. We worry about people’s reactions to our bold initiatives. We worry about failure and that dampens our enthusiasm. We think about fool proofing our initiatives and therefore never get around to launching our ideas. We worry about the past and the mistakes we made. We think about the future and feel insecure. Thinking before acting is definitely a must but it is the over thinking and consequent ‘paralysis by analysis’ syndrome that we must be watchful of. Do not become a prisoner of your negative thoughts.

It is time you got over these personality traits that limit you from realizing your true potential!

Try these:

  1. List out 5 things that you always wanted to do but did not attempt because you lacked confidence or because you worried about failure or were too concerned about the reactions of others. Put a deadline and attempt any 2 in the next 6 months.
  2. List out 5 of your worst fears. How many of them do you think you are likely to encounter in the coming year. Do you know of anyone who has confronted the fear you are terrified of and can you learn from how they coped with it?
  3. Assuming you won a lottery ( you just might if you dare to invest in a lottery ticket) of Rs. 1,00,000 how would you utilize the proceeds?  Are you already thinking that you don’t have that kind of luck or that this is a hypothetical question and you don’t want to even think about 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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WP-14-6 The brightest light is within uMost of us alternate between some period of bliss and the rest of the time in disillusionment. Our disenchantment with life mainly stems from the following

Our inability to define a purpose to our existence

Our tendency to compare our life with that of those around

Our inability to appreciate the blessings in our life

Our fear of the future.

Now that we have managed to throw some light on the reasons for our frustrations, unhappiness and insecurities we can work on our problems and enjoy bliss for a large part of life. This is easier said than done because we still have to make the changes within us. This means we need to put the spotlight on us ; through introspection, reflection and acceptance. Fortunately each one of us has the gifts of rational thinking, the ability to be proactive and a conscience to guide us; all of which taken together provides the brightest spotlight within us to re-examine our life and our lifestyle. Look within you; focus on the problems that impede you from enjoying bliss and find the right medicine even if it be a bitter or painful pill / injection to be subjected to.

To define a purpose to our life – pay attention to your passions, your strengths and your gut feeling. Be aware of your personal limitations, your acute dislikes and fears. With this matrix outlined, visualize the options that fit snuggly into your vision of what you want to do in your life.

To overcome the tendency to compare – remember there is always a price to pay. So the neo rich may experience loneliness, the celebrities a dire need for privacy, the apparently successful may constantly worry about failure. At the same time ask yourself what price are you willing to pay for money, fame and success. The answers may surprise you and perhaps even shock you.

To better appreciate the blessings in our life – look around and focus on those thousands around who you loathe or pity. SO what is it that you pity them for or loathe them for? In comparison do you realize how much more blessed you are be it by way of good health, loving family, financial security, peace of mind etc.

You can overcome the fear of the future – by appreciating the present moment, your tremendous reserve of blessings, the security you have built up both tangible but more importantly intangible like your good will, relationships cultivated and the empowerment given to your loved ones.

When you see with the light within you, you will be honest, transparent, determined and decisive for otherwise you will miss out on the moles and warts in your life that blemish an otherwise perfect opportunity to lead and enjoy a blissful life.

Try this:

Write down 5 positive sentences each beginning with the words

I want to be….

I shall achieve…..

I will not compromise on…..

I will change my life by ……

I want to be remembered as…..

Choose your favorite proverb on the following themes

Happiness

Success

Goal setting

Motivation

Life

Go through the following blog post on LIGHT http://www.poweract.blogspot.in/2010/11/light.html 

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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Dissapointments are natural...but...

How many of you reading this feel they are always unlucky and never win be it a lottery, or a game of tambola / housie or just a lucky draw at a raffle? Disappointment is a natural corollary at the end of any such game for all those who never win and worse still miss out on winning by a whisker. There are others who seem to be very lucky but are disappointed that they never win the big stakes. Perhaps most of us see these as minor disappointments of everyday life and get over our disappointments in these situations quickly.  However, the larger disappointments come from our self set (often unrealistic) expectations; be it grades in exams, winning a match, meeting a deadline, meeting a commitment or it could be expectations related to  a large salary rise or  a promotion or worse still expectations from our children in their scholastic, personal and professional life.

One consolation that softens the pain of disappointment is the realization that everyone suffers disappointments albeit in varying measures. However, it is coping with disappointments that are a huge challenge for us.. While the techniques to cope would vary it is essential to be aware that we should not let disappointments become an excuse nor let it fester in our minds and poison our thinking and actions. Here are a couple of pointers to overcome disappointments, quickly regain our composure and motivate us to strive for something even better than what we didn’t get.

Accept disappointments as inevitable: No matter how well planned and careful one is circumstances are uncontrollable and obviously disappointments will lurk around. Escaping disappointments is not an option and accepting this reality is the first step in coping with disappointments. Eg. Flight delays can be very frustrating just as not getting reservations be it for travel or at the theater can be equally disappointing.

Put disappointments in perspective:  Well some disappointments will always be more painful than others. It is our ability to be rational and pragmatic about the disappointment that will bring equanimity into our life. E.g. Not getting a ticket for a movie could be huge disappointment if you were with a date but a flight delay could be terrible if you were to miss an important long haul connecting flight because of the delay of the first flight. In either case it is essential to reconcile to the reality and make the best of the inevitable situation you are faced with.

Seek a positive in the disappointment: To make the best of the inevitable situation you find yourself post the disappointment, force yourself to find a pleasant alternative. This needs a little imagination, a spark of creativity and a stout heart to overcome the disappointment. E.g. If stuck in a stopover town due to a delayed flight, the best option is to explore /discover the nuances of the place. If you missed out on getting tickets you alternatives could range from a surprise fine dining experience to exploring alternative entertainment options or simply going on a drive.

Focus on the many blessings you have: Pause for a moment and think of all the things that you are blessed with. Loving family, decent lifestyle, good education, freedom to pursue your dreams and the list is endless. So the disappointments you encounter are mere blips in an otherwise reasonably good life. Learn to let go of the disappointments and instead embrace the fortunes that you are blessed with.

Be aware that no disappointment can overcome your spirit: Disappointments are equivalent to the little pricks that one has to endure when romping through the woods. We never give up on our trek or hike merely because of a couple of untoward mishaps or stumbles or a scraped knee. It is our enthusiasm that props up our spirit, strengthens us to endure and motivates us to the very end. We need to realize that it is this same spirit in much larger doses that will always insulate us from giving up when faced with disappointments.

Try this:

 

How will you cope with the following disappointments?

  1. You are unable to recollect the location of an important document that you remember having kept very safely.
  2. You are in rush to catch a flight and discover that your car won’t start and you have reach the airport on time.
  3. You pick up your favorite coat and notice a large ugly stain on it.
  4. A long lost friend is visiting you and gifts you something. On opening the gift you find it is something that you craved for but it has the most terrible color that you despise immensely.
  5. You are invited to be the keynote speaker at a prestigious seminar. You have worked hard on your speech but on the day of the address, you wake up feeling feverish and with a terrible sore throat. 

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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13-31-Be YourselfWe are often left wondering why we do not succeed and realize our full potential. Much as we ponder the answer seems elusive, our frustrations keep increasing and worse still we are envious and jealous of those whom we feel succeed beyond measure. The quote above gives clear clues as to why we fail to achieve success that is well within our reach. Here is a simple analysis of the clues and each one of us can interpret the analysis for ourselves and apply the learning to realize our full potential.

Lack of self confidence. The vast majority of us are never going to be in the top percentile of those achieving academic excellence. Unfortunately, there is an over emphasis laid on academic brilliance and that first dents the confidence of the vast majority who lack the academic powers. Perhaps this lack of confidence then translates into lack of clarity of personal goals, indecision, confused mind set, inability to focus, half hearted efforts etc. This then becomes a vicious circle where performance is not up to par and in turn one becomes even less confident. Breaking this vicious circle holds the key to regaining our self confidence and self esteem.

Comparisons with others. Almost everyone is guilty of this at some stage or the other in our life. Unfortunately, the seeds of this aliment are first sown by our own well meaning parents, elders, teachers and well wishers who invariably try to compare our progress and achievements with that of other peers. While we resented that comparison, far too often we have subconsciously imbibed it and end up doing the same and ending coming to the same conclusion ‘poor me’ or ‘lucky them’. The comparisons by themselves are not bad because it gives us yardsticks to measure ourselves. However the conclusion we draw and which then becomes our creed poses a huge problem for our personal well being and success.

Attempting to be what we are not. One of the consequences of our lack of self confidence and our penchant to compare ourselves with others is the metamorphosis that we undergo in aiming to imitate our perceived success heroes/ heroines. Unfortunately the metamorphosis is incomplete because we only end up imitating the individual without imbibing the virtues he /she possesses. The result is a lame attempt at masquerading as a success while the mind, body and soul have never come to terms with the artificiality and hollowness of the self we project.

Not paying attention to our strengths. In our eagerness to achieve success we seek to imitate others, search for shortcuts and give up far too easily when confronted with difficulties. What we fail to realize is that each of us is blessed with our own unique abilities, talents and strengths. All it requires us to do is recognize it, allow it to flower in our work and leverage it in both our personal and professional life.

Focusing too much on our limitations. Time and time again the biggest weakness that thwarts our attempts to attain success is our inability to get going. This is because we are obsessed about the limitations we perceive in us and tend to imagine failures as a natural corollary. So if at all we begin we do it with trepidation, keep looking over our shoulders for signs of failures and fail to stay the course when confronted with problems. We also fail to work on ironing out our limitations, let them become excuses and sadly become slaves to our own anxieties.

Not accepting ourselves as we are.  Perhaps the one single cause for our inability to achieve the success we are capable of is our inability to acknowledge our self worth. We are terrified of our limitations, under value our strengths, are unclear about our goals and search for answers to our problems around us. The reality is that we create a bigger problem than what exists and instead of seeking the simple answers that are within us refuse to accept the individuality we are blessed with.

Remember you are both the sculptor and the sculpture; it is never too late to chisel away at yourself and let out the individuality in you.

Try this:

  1. Write down 3 role models. Now outline 3 qualities / abilities in them that you envy and can adopt or adapt for your personal growth. Can you identify 2 traits / weakness in the role model that you detest?
  2. Write down 2 personal habits/ traits/ limitations that you would like to get rid of. Outline a month long plan to reduce / eliminate at least one of these 2 limitations.
  3. Given your personal and academic background, what is your dream job/ business venture?  What steps do you need to take to attain that? What are the 2 biggest stumbling blocks and the 2 major gains you attain in achieving them?

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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13-24-Dissapointments are natural...but...

Disappointments arise when outcomes do not meet expectations. As human beings we tend to brood longer over our disappointments but relish our successes fleetingly. Ask yourself how often you complaint, whine, criticize, find fault, get upset / angry, feel hurt, pass on blame, keep regretting, try to be alone/ silent etc. On the other hand how often do you smile, praise, thank, appreciate, remain enthusiastic, compliment others, be the company of others, say/ do something positive spontaneously etc. Your honest answers would give you a clue to how you cope with disappointments which are unavoidable but never unmanageable.

Even if we are optimists and have a positive attitude we can still be disheartened and disillusioned by major disappointments. If we are pessimistic and have a tinted outlook then it becomes imperative that we find ways and means to cope with the disappointments that we would encounter off and on.

Here are a few strategies to cope with disappointments.

It can’t get worse. Imagine you failed in your exams. You lose a year now. It has happened; but now you can honestly tell yourself that it is the worst possible outcome but it can’t get worse than this. Once you make this profound discovery moving on with life becomes relatively much easier than brooding over the why it happened; if only I studied more; perhaps I should have taken a chance and cheated and the numerous such thoughts that keep swimming in your head.

Thank god it is only this much. Recently a family member came home way past midnight and gently broke the news that he met with an accident. Obviously you are rattled and then shocked to see the person swaddled in bandages. Once you get over the initial shock the next natural progression is to seek more information about what happened all the while berating the person for being careless and irresponsible. Once we have calmed down and get hold of ourselves we rationalize that thank god it wasn’t worse. From then on we are able to handle the shock and disappointment with more pragmatism and acceptance.

Ok so how do I limit the damage? You are frantically searching for an important document and to your horror and terrible disappointment you just can’t seem to locate it. Your panic is matched only by the disconcerting feeling that you are heading for disaster. You search every nook and corner, you can rummage through every drawer and cupboard, you vent your frustration and then fall on your knees seeking divine intervention; alas all in vain. The quicker you get hold of your emotions the better the chances of finding an alternative solution that will help limit the damage perhaps even find an alternative solution.

What is good about the situation? Your team has played and excellent match in which you dominated the opponents and yet you lost the game thanks to a freak goal by the opposition. It is hard to come to terms with such heartbreaking disappointments. The results can be overturned; the missed chances cannot be retrieved; a blame game won’t help. A debriefing by the coach however can turn up a surprising number of useful and invaluable insights about the game. The mistakes made, the attitude and approach of the players, the chinks in the opponents armor than can be exploited next time around, the difference in play in both periods of the game; all of these are more seriously imbibed when the bitterness of disappointment is more acute.

Nothing can overwhelm me. You reach the airport only to be told that your flight has been cancelled and your connecting flights and holiday plans have in simply gone for a toss in a jiffy. Anger, frustration, helplessness, sadness, panic seem to engulfing you. Your mind is in a whirl, you can’t focus and you are in a tizzy. Quickly take deep breaths and calm yourself. While asking the reason for the flight cancellation may be a natural instinctive reaction, wasting time delving into it would be both fruitless and frustrating. Instead, focus on outlining the alternatives to salvage the situation. Take proactive action to implement your plans and be pragmatic about your subsequent actions.

This too shall pass. Pause and think; how many disappointments have actually
ruined your life or brought it to a complete standstill. The fact that you are 
reading this is proof that you are hale and hearty despite the many 
disappointments that you would have faced in your life. The reality of life
mandates that each of us will have triumphs (success) and disasters
(disappointments)  and the trick to overcome disappointment is to remember
Rudyard Kipling’s lines in his poem IF 
If you can meet with triumph and disaster 
And treat those two imposters just the same;

For neither success not failure is permanent… for this too shall pass. 

Try this:

  1. You overhear your best friend criticizing you.
  2. You were hauled up by your superior / school management for an aberration done by someone else and no amount of pleading your innocence can cut any ice with them.
  3. You encounter a flat tyre on deserted stretch of the highway.
  4. You press the buzzer during the tie breaker of a quiz final and discover that the right answer is on the tip of your tongue but alas you are unable to articulate it on time.
  5. You go to highly rated restaurant and to you horror the food is awful and disappointing.

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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