Tag: discipline

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

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No excuses please

18- 02- 14 Jan 18- Quit Making excusesPerhaps you too like many, have made some excellent New Year resolutions. However, like the vast majority, you too could already be feeling the pressure of sticking to the resolutions set. It is quite possible that we have already defaulted on a few already and are feeling a tinge of guilt about it. Our problems stem from our inability to take responsibility and own the challenges that we have set for ourselves. It all starts with us making excuses for any aberration that we are guilty of. We blame circumstances, others around us and occasionally our own ineptitude. We rarely resolve to overcome the circumstances or to ignore those who knowingly or unknowingly derail our plans. Worst of all, we accept our ineptitude as a character flaw that cannot be corrected.

If we simply pay more attention to correcting our personal flaws, the resultant benefits would be mind-boggling. The first step is to stop complaining. Complains are akin to a carpenter blaming his tools instead of working on enhancing his skills. While at times one may face trying circumstances and daunting challenges, these are the times when one has to dig deep into one’s reserves and find that extra something to overcome the challenge.

Worrying, whining and crying are common traits displayed by failures. These are excuses masquerading in varied forms that paralyze an individual from taking some proactive steps.  In reality they do bigger damage in that the individual neither seeks help nor helps himself/ herself and instead they let circumstances dominate their future. Day dreaming is a more pleasurable way of circumventing reality. The pleasure lasts just as long as the dream and then the individual comes crashing down with a real thud. Day dreaming is a passive way to while away one’s time creating an illusion of success to be achieved in the future. Neither success nor the future materialize the way it appears in day dreams.

The way ahead is to be determined, disciplined and dispassionate. Be determined that you are going to achieve your goals / New Year resolution/ targets set. Wake up each morning with the goal in mind. Let the pursuit of the goal never slip out of your mind. Go to bed with thoughts of the progress made towards achieving your goals. Discipline is following the specific steps outlined to attain your goal. No excuses for not following the steps must be your mantra. If required sacrifice other pleasures just to ensure you have the time to follow the steps outlined. To keep nay sayers and critics at bay you need to be dispassionate and not let emotions and fears cloud your goal. Listen to those who have your welfare at heart. Listen to criticism. However, you must learn to ignore what does not suit your plans because only you can visualize the goal and success you have set for yourself.

Try these:

  1. Make a list of the most common excuses you are guilty of making. Your goal is to ensure you eliminate or at least minimize the use of these excuses in the coming days.
  2. Outline three reasons why you have not actively pursued a latent passion. Jot down three action points that will help you pursue your passion starting this coming week. Ensure you don’t use excuses to not begin work on your passion or discontinue it soon after beginning it.
  3. What are the qualities of a person you admire that you will like to adopt? Begin work on imbibing those qualities starting now.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

A makeover for myself

31- 31 Aug 17-A makeover for Myself

It is an excellent practice for every individual to take time out to re-energize, recharge and reinvent herself/himself. The problem is that one has to often do it all alone because no one knows the self better than the individual concerned. The simple mantra to achieve it is to believe and practice the phrase ‘ I am working on myself for myself by myself.’ The mantra sounds simple enough but the practice of the same is tricky because it involves the following steps:

Analyzing the self – This has to be done objectively. Spend time reflecting about your strengths and of course your weaknesses.  Apart from thinking, reflecting and analyzing on your own, take time to also seek clues in appreciation, criticism, feedback you get from time to time from family, friends, colleagues and experts. Their feedback would have some correlation to the reality and hence could provide you a better insight into your own self. Focus also on your interests, your latent passion and skills and your dreams for the future.

Identifying the areas of improvement – It is possible that there could be a wide variety of feedback that indicates areas for improvement. Some of these could be frivolous, a few very pertinent but the key is in identifying those areas of weakness that you need to strengthen because they are critical to your success. It could key competencies related to your profession or behavioral aspects or new skills to be learnt or bad habits to be eliminated. E.g. you maybe a poor listener or you could be an introvert both cardinal sins if you are a sales professional.

Finding a method to strengthen the weak areas of the self – It could be by sheer will power or by constant practice or it may require an external intervention. An external intervention could be in the nature of attending a specialized course or attending a relevant workshop or by sourcing the relevant material to read up on etc. At times despite your best efforts, you do not seem to be progressing and that is when one gets demoralized. At these times, you require a good mentor; perhaps a good friend or a strong tutor or the support of an understanding boss. Take strength also from the encouragement of others, the positive feedback you get and from seeking the progress you make even if it is a wee bit slow and sporadic.

Leveraging personal strengths – While focusing on overcoming personal weakness it must also be borne in mind that we can leverage our strengths to progress rapidly and become effective in our personal, professional and social life. If we do not utilize our talents, abilities and strengths we would be losing out on opportunities to grow and excel. Sometimes our abilities need to be sharpened and strengthened with external inputs and one must invest in the same. Paying attention to feedback also helps in identifying our strengths about which we may not be confident or lack awareness of. It may also give us clues on the areas requiring our attention to ensure we give out our peak performance.

Setting new standards of personal excellence – Growth in any form indicates that we are striving to move beyond our current standards, challenge ourselves to exceed our own boundaries and take risks to explore beyond our immediate horizons. All progress has been the outcome of people who focused on excellence. They looked out for solutions to problems and improvised on the same. At times people have gone back to the drawing board and turned the solutions on its head to come out with something more revolutionary and effective. Medical science provides ample evidence of this. With the help of technology, almost every aspect of our life is being revolutionized.  As individuals we too must strive to ride the technological wave, adopt/ adapt it and innovatively leverage it to set for ourselves new performance standards and raise the bar for our personal excellence.

Repeating the process – Constant review, making notes of learning outcomes and repeating the process of personal improvement would help make us change for the better and enhance our or effectiveness and output. Sitting on our laurels would only set us back because others would overtake us. We need to constantly reinvent ourselves to remain motivated, goal oriented and success focused.

Try these

Identify the following:

  1. Two inventions that you have the highest regard for.
  2. Two individuals who have had a significant impact on your life and the reasons for their extraordinary influence on you.
  3. Two gadgets without which you would be hopelessly ineffective. ( Do NOT include computers, internet, telephones or  mobile phones in it.)
  4. Two inventions that in your opinion are useless
  5. Two fictional characters who have had a great impact in your life.

List out

  • One weakness in you and the steps you will take to overcome it.
  • Outline you greatest strength and how are you using it in your day to day life
  • One quality you wished you possessed
  • One hobby you would be keen to develop
  • One practice / habit  that you would want to adopt shortly.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Fire Power

26- 22 July 17-Fire powerThere are often times when each of us busy trying to douse one fire after another because of varied crisis that keep cropping up. In frustration and exasperation we frequently experience the urge to throw in the towel and give it all up. Yet from within us comes a rage, an anger and/ or a passion to strive to overcome the forces that challenge us. The fires we keep dousing outside are made possible only by the raging fire within us that spurs us to think positively and triggers positive action and positive results.

To stoke the fire inside you requires you to fuel it with the following:

See problems as opportunities – Never let problems become issues that will weigh you down. Instead see them as opportunities to test your mettle. That is the time when you visualize a personal glory and victory lap waiting to be lapped up by you, provided of course you grab the opportunity and transform the problem into a solution. E.g. Your boss is to make a critical presentation to be made in front of some important clients. Due to a sudden emergency she is unable to attend the presentation and you are delegated to make that presentation.

Find a reason to succeed – Giving up is easy. Fighting the battle requires more than just determination. Your fight will be a worthwhile effort only when you have a strong reason to succeed. If your future is at stake you will put up the bravest fight of your life. If your honor is at peril you will fight a bigger, a stronger and a tougher opponent be it a person or a situation. E.g. you have a dislike for one particular subject. However you know it is critical to score marks in it o it could drag down your overall score and may impede your chances of getting into a course/ institution of your choice. This should be reason enough for you to focus more on the subject.

Challenge yourself – Move out of your comfort zone.  Stretch your limits. Discover new facets about your talents and abilities. There could occasional failures; these are merely challenges teasing you to overcome them. Every athlete who competes knows that while their rivals are challenging them in the arena, their real challenge is to improve their personal performance standards. Set yourself performance standards and keep challenging yourself to exceed it. e.g. One normally tends to postpone doing disagreeable tasks. Challenge yourself to first tackle tasks you dislike rather than postpone them and feel miserable till you tackle it.

Punch above your weight – The execution of routines with a higher degree of complexity or difficulty earns more points in a diving or gymnastics routine. A boxer knows that if he moves up a weight category, his challengers would be much more bigger, stronger and powerful and the overcoming them would be far more different than when boxing in a lower weight class. Your inner strength is on full display; the bigger risk greater the glory becomes your mantra and as they say it is the fight in the man that counts. E.g. you have a talent that you have never explored. Take part in a professional competition and explore your talent.

Try these

  1. When your senior colleague or boss is wrong will you disagree with them especially in a crisis situation? How will you go about expressing your point of view without annoying or irritating them or making them feel silly.
  2. You are a heading a team and due to a misunderstanding your boss accuses one of your team members of tardy and below average job performance. How would you stand up to defend your team member who you are sure is not at fault.
  3. Make an attempt to do the following
  • Do something you have never done before e.g. snorkeling / bungee jumping / diving
  • Overcome some fears e.g. public speaking / holding a snake / participating in a competition
  • Challenge yourself to bring about a positive personal change e.g. weight loss / giving up a bad habit

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Overcoming the challenge of being self disciplined .

21- 11 June 17- DisciplineIt is tough to be disciplined without supervision because falling prey to the lure of something more agreeable often overrides our deepest desires. Invariably it is a third party with authority, like a parent, a teacher, a coach, a boss who can forcefully discipline us. Unfortunately, we cannot have such authoritarian figures around us all the time, hence we have to make our inner most urge and our conscience our self appointed disciplinarians. The trick is to find ways and means to identify what we want most and super impose it on what we want now, so that we do what is needed to be done most, now!

Have goals – Each of us has to make the effort of having various goals for the varied dimensions of our life. Having a passion that will become a profession would be an ideal long term goal. However, profession is just one dimension of our life and finding our passion is in itself a challenging goal. In addition to a professional goal, each individual must also have a financial, social, personal, and academic goal. Goals enable one to have focus and a purpose. These will define the actions you take that will bring you closer to each goal that you have set. Remember that there is also a time element that has a major bearing on how much of the goal you achieve. E.g. the earlier you start to save, there is higher chance of having a larger savings.

Have milestones for each goal – While goals provide a focal point, often they seem to distant and we begin to think that we have ample time to reach those goals. On the other hand if one has short duration milestones which together enable you to reach your long term goal, it will help you focus on what needs to be done the most now. E.g. If your goal is to score an aggregate of X marks, you have to further break it down into the marks to be scored in each subject and then allocate time for studies for the respective subjects. You may even have to allot time for breaks for yourself so that you can relax, distress and recharge yourself.

Measure progress – While making goals and milestones is relatively easy, the key to progress is by measuring how much you have achieved. This will force you to do what needs to be done, make you aware of how well you are faring and give you a realistic picture of how realistically you will achieve your long term goals. Measuring progress will also help you revise your plans, revise your milestones and action plans so that you are able to progress towards your goals.

Make fear an allay – The goal gives you the focus, the milestones help you make progress and the measurement of your progress will provide you both the carrot and the stick for self discipline. The stick comes in the form of fear. If you are lagging behind, it will definitely give you a jolt for you will have put in extra efforts to attain your goal. This will automatically make you more disciplined. The stick called fear will be your ally in making you realize if you have drawn up a realistic goal or if you have majorly slipped in being disciplined.

Visualize success sweeter – The carrot that the measurement of progress provides is in the form of joy and satisfaction with the progress you are making. This in turn motivates you to continue to be disciplined because you have already tasted the sweetness of success. Self discipline becomes etched in your psyche because you know it is the most rewarding habit that you can form.

‘Fear will force you to be self disciplined; success will make you addicted to self discipline. Use both these forces to be self disciplined so that you can say NO to what is not to be done now and instead DO what has to be done now so that you attain what you want MOST.

Try these

  1. Make a list of all the pending jobs that you have as of now. It should include official work, personal work, leisure time activity, your family time activity etc. Now regroup them under some meaningful categories, perhaps on the same lines as mentioned above i.e. personal work, official work, family related etc. Are you in a better position to focus on the urgent and important work listed? Do not make this a onetime activity but use it as a tool to be updated and profited from.
  2. List out the following
  • Three instances where you had to pay a price for not being self disciplined.
  • Three activities that you dislike but cannot avoid.
  • Three instance where you felt really happy that you were self disciplined.
  • Three activities that you love but cannot indulge in.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Discover yourself and showcase it

17- 14 May 17-Discover yourselfThe first step is to believe you are unique… different from your siblings, your twin and from every other human being ever created or to be created. Once you realize this, it should be a strong motivator for you to leverage your uniqueness and showcase your identity to the world. Far too often we associate academic or sporting brilliance at an early age as a sure sign of future success. The reality is that with few exceptions, most of those who showed early promise could not cope with the pressures of the world or did not have the nerve to move out of their comfort zone and make a unique mark. Of course the word successful is relative. As long as you use your talents, promise and abilities to become someone better than anyone hoped you would, it could be a fair indicator of talent. A better measure would be if you are happy with what you have achieved and do not have any regrets about not fulfilling your promise, that would be real success.

To become what you are capable of, focus on these:

Believe in yourself – Have the confidence that you have it in you to do something special. While academic excellence could boost your chances of doing well, it is actually the self belief, the discipline and the passion that one brings in, that opens the doors to achievement and success. Self belief also fortifies you against nay-sayers, the critics, those who discourage you and those who constantly belittle your progress. Self belief gives you the energy to carry on when progress seems slow or non-existent and when obstacles and failures occasionally threaten to derail your plans.

Be prepared to learn – Every type of formal learning as well the experiences of each passing day, gives invaluable practical learning. The challenge is to be open minded and willing to soak in the learning. Occasionally the learning can be tough and painful; other times it can be easy and simple. The key is to seek out the learning each day and put it into practice by adopting / adapting good practices and giving a wide berth / avoiding the bad practices.

Be prepared to fail – Failure is an essential requirement for success, for it is the true measure that explains life’s uncertainties and challenges.  It also prepares one to anticipate troubles, teaches one to think creatively, toughens one to face adversities and most of all it helps one to realize one’s own potential, passion and purpose. Failure is also a sure sign that one is trying and doing something and not merely day dreaming.

Be prepared to take risks –Although one is prepared to fail, there is always the psychological barrier that often limits us from daring, moving out of our comfort zone and taking the big leap. Many a time it is the outcome of ‘paralysis by analysis’. Other times it is simply because the going is good and so why test one’s potential attitude. Unless one thirsts for success, enhances one’s benchmark, craves to make a mark, the risk taking ability remains dormant. Visualizing the big picture, focusing on the ultimate goal and challenging yourself are the best ways to take risks and realize one’s latent potential.

Keep going – There could be setbacks, you could get tired and discouraged and occasionally the mind would waver and set in motion negative thoughts. Pause but do not stop. Catch your breath, reinforce your zeal, get inspired by your vision, be motivated by the challenge you have taken up and keep going.

You have a point to prove to yourself; to be somebody nobody thought you could be !

Try these:

  1. List out the 5 – 10 things you were keen on doing but which others discouraged you from doing or that which people said was beyond your capability. Now choose one which you are still passionate about and set yourself a deadline and a plan of action to achieve it. Begin now.
  2. If you have an audience, what is the one ability that you can showcase and grab their attention? It could be a magic/ card trick, an exquisite piece of musical talent, it could be mimicry, cartooning or painting or sketching, telling your favorite joke in your own unique style, creating your own limerick instantaneously etc.

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

Be rich always

04-get-richTake away money as a measure of richness and ever single human being can be as rich as he /she chooses to be. True riches lies in being rich in mind body and soul. 

Keep in my mind the mantra:

I alone have the power to become as rich as I want to be.

The formula is simple, the application requires discipline and it’s your life your riches your choice.

Rich in knowledge – Read, observe, learn, teach, assimilate, experience, explore.

Rich in adventure – move away from your comfort zone, take risks, do something different, be creative, experiment.

Rich in laughter – See the funny side, laugh at yourself, share laughter, learn to see the funny side of the worst, think fun, be fun, make every moment fun.

Rich in family – Be together, meet often, celebrate together, keep in touch, talk more with each other, listen, touch, and hug.

Rich in health – Eat healthy, exercise, avoid stress, have a positive attitude, be around with people who make you happy and comfortable.

Rich in love – Love yourself! Love those around! Learn to love life! Learn love each moment.

Try these:

  1. Identify and use a website for each of the above riches. Oh yes there are ample alternatives online. If you want you can even identify a suitable app.
  2. Make it a point to do the following off and on
  • Tell (not share on whatsapp) a joke to a friend / colleague
  • Pay attention to a frequent criticism that you get and do something to overcome that.
  • Read something that is totally different from what you normally read
  • Surprise your family members for no special reason
  • Announce and do something challenging e.g. losing weight or dancing / singing at a function etc.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Do more with less

26- do more with lessOne of the problems facing the world is the indiscriminate use of limited resources. As individuals, each of us must examine how individually each of us can limit our own use of the resources available to us so that we can make our own little contribution to saving our resources. That apart, we must also be aware, of how we are influenced by advertisements, social pressure and our own ego, in consuming more than what we need to. Once we become aware of our blissful ignorance, we will be more vigilant and possibly more conscious about doing more with less.

Reuse & Recycle – Most people in developing nations have mastered this art but as the economic well being goes up, we indulge freely because we can now afford to. So convenience becomes the new mantra and reuse & recycling remain footnotes in the daily grind. Think before you dispose; can you find alternative uses for what you want to dispose? Don’t worry about being called a cheapskate; your objective is to do more with less.

Utilize recyclable stuff – Primarily this means minimize your use of plastics and instead utilize reusable options like paper / cloth bags.  Can you have your own minimal crockery at your work place so that you can wash and reuse your coffee mug / spoon/ fork and plate? Do not be overly worried about what people will think about you. You will be setting an example and perhaps influence others to imitate you.

Limit our usage – It is an extension of the above; wherein you go prepared so that you avoid the use of stuff (like plastic bags )/ do not print flex boards indiscriminately simply because it is cheap / buy stuff simply because it looks nice/ cute  or is on discount but which you may never use after buying. How about working on not wasting electricity and switching off all the unnecessary lights and power supply switches? Ask yourself if you are wasting running water and how you can limit the use of it. Notice how tooth paste advertisements always show the paste being spread on the entire bristles.  Do we really have to use so much of toothpaste or is it a psychological ploy to ensure you consume more? Notice also that the large toothpaste packs have a much wider mouth so that you tend to squeeze out a much larger volume; a good marketing method to increase consumption and sales; do you need to fall prey to it?

Do not overstock – Overstocking would only lead to possibilities of having expired stuff that you have to trash. Particularly true of medicines and edible stuff. So you pay good money (even if there are bargain offers) only to end up losing all that money to trash.

Find alternatives – How about buying refill packs instead of a bottled / fully packaged stuff where the packing becomes thrash no sooner you bring it home. How about having a sturdy bag that accompanies you whenever you go shopping so that you eliminate all the plastic bags that your stuff is put into?

Say No where possible – Even if the shopkeeper offers you a plastic buy and you just have a couple of items to take away can you avoid taking that plastic bag? Can you resist the temptation to buy stuff just because of a discount / sale offer if you do not think you are going to use the stuff in the near future? Can you say no to ordering food online simply because you are too lazy?

Be creative – When going window shopping don’t carry money/ wallet. This will ensure that you don’t indulge in impulsive buying. Sure, if there is something you really want, you will take that effort of going again and buying it. Remove all the shopping apps on your electronic devises. Retain only the essential ones. Can you limit home delivery so that the amount of plastics and cartons can be done away with? Can you shop from those outlets which you know are eco friendly?

Spread the word – Your actions speak louder than your words. So let others notice your pro environment behavior.  You can also share with others your concerns and suggestions on how they too can become environmentally conscious and take practical steps.

Notice that in the above process, you are actually ending up doing a lot more by using less. When action speaks louder than words; that too is actually getting a lot more done by less pontification.

Apologies for using more words and sentences than needed for getting the message across.

Try these:

  • Make a list of environmental friendly initiatives that you will immediately implement.
  • What are steps you will take to ensure you get more money’s worth from all what you have?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

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Grow like wild flowers

18- Grow like a wildflowerAs individuals, we often believe that we are not distinguished by any great characteristic or ability and that we are therefore consigned to be just a part of the crowd. Yet secretly we do nurture dreams, desires, hopes and fantasies most of it largely centered around success and achievement. Occasionally we may also venture and try to attain some of our ideals but it is with trepidation and half heartedness that we dare to attempt. We are cagey about the reactions of others to our attempt to dare, we fear criticism, we fear failure and we are aghast the thought that we may look like a fool if we don’t succeed. The sum total of these thoughts is that we either don’t dare or we make an attempt with no conviction and therefore the venture is doomed to fail.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Try these:

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

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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