Tag: faith

When the going gets tough…

There are times when the spirit is low, the pathway seems steep and the goal looks very distant. Disappointment is evident, frustration is natural and giving up seems the best and easiest way out of the predicament. It is at these times that we consciously or unconsciously attempt to reach out for help, support and encouragement and the two mains stays of our life friends and a song to hum anchor us firmly to the bedrock of hope, positivity and inspiration.

Notice carefully that friends and that includes family, neighbors and colleagues are the external anchor that we can physically lean on. The importance of being social is never more clearly articulated when we face a crisis and seek support from those around. When the human race is unique qualified as a being ‘social animals’ it was well established that human beings need each other at all times and its efficacy and importance is best established when one experiences it when one needs it most; a death in the family is an extreme case and contrasting that are the joyous occasions like a wedding or a birth. In day to day life though we experience this social dimension practically every moment be it at the work place or at home. The times when we are

A song on the other hand is an internal anchor, developed through our upbringing, our attitude and our fortitude.  Most of us are bathroom singers, who open up and express our joy through our tuneless, carefree and occasionally senseless rhythmic meanderings secure in the knowledge that we are all by ourselves. That gives us a good clue as to how important a role a song plays in translating our emotions into an expression of hope, delight and fun. There are times when a song lifts us up when downcast and forlorn and other times we would rather merge our emotions with the pathos and subtlety of the poetry. The latter though does not last long and when we have indulged in reliving our sorrows through a mournful song, we realize the futility of regret and find a more meaningful peppy song to uplift and inspire us.

When amongst good friends, have you noticed the cares of the world seem to disappear, life seems like a breeze and while tomorrow may not change very drastically, it becomes a lot easier to embrace tomorrow?  Similarly when a lilting tune pops out of nowhere and we merrily hum it, especially when confronted with a problem, an issue or a challenge, the load becomes lighter, the burden more bearable and there is a ray of hope that seems perennial. Do you anything more to live life to the fullest?

Try this:

  1. Make a list of 5 of your good friends and outline the one quality of theirs that endears him/ her to you.
  2. Can you recollect the names of books or movies in which friends have been shown to bond despite all odds and differences? E.g. Remember the Famous 5 and Secret seven series of Enid Blyton
  3. Click on this link to hear the Theme song of the war movie The Bridge on the Rive Kwai http://tinyurl.com/yff5zlh
  4. Can you list out 3 songs that will always uplift you no matter what your mood?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog


Decisions shape destiny…go on make up your mind

It is in your moments of decision that your destiny is shaped.  Tony Robbins

Of all the numerous faults that one can be accused of, being indecisive is one of the most serious faults for it makes a person fearful, confused, inept and paralyzed, thereby losing out on opportunities to progress, be productive and attain success. The sports arena illustrates this best when an indecisive player becomes a bane for the team and the game by poor coordination and shoddy performance. Ever noticed the mispasses on the field, wayward shooting at the goal and the back chatting between team members; many of these are symptomatic of the malaise of poor decision making. In real life, anyone who often echoes his/ her concern of being confused can be quickly identified as someone prone to avoid taking a decision. Sadly, very often many of these people become indecisive not because they lack inputs but because there are too many equally attractive options or equally scary consequences and deciding on any one is challenging.

Here are four pointers to help one become an effective decision maker.

Analyze extensively but don’t get paralyzed by it. Paralysis by analysis is the bane of those who believe in extensive study in order to minimize the chances of failure. Most people would profess to study threadbare the situation that needs a decision so as to be able to make the best decision, but subconsciously many of them are trying to find the best way to hedge their decision should it fail. As a result making it fail safe becomes the focus rather than maximizing success. When risk appears we tend to demonize it and consequently vacillate between alternatives until forced into a decision either by time constraints or other external pressures.

Accept the reality that not all decisions will be right. Human nature comprehends failure to indicate ineffectiveness, incompetence and ineptness, faults which in our myopic opinion grievously devalue us in the eyes of others. The reality is that failure is proof that someone dared, someone miscalculated and that there could be alternatives to the path taken. How many were actually ruined by the mistakes made? Barring some who were foolhardy or blinded by a false sense of invincibility, every other person who failed learnt from those failures and bounced back with better decisive strategies.

Be aware of the consequences of taking the decision and also of not taking the decision. By being indecisive and avoiding making a commitment, the chances are that we are risking not grasping opportunities, perhaps even missing out on minimizing / avoiding failure and certainly ensuring that the original issue remains unresolved. .  Ask anyone who has invested in shares and stocks and chances are you will get more stories of failures in stock picking but probe further and then they will accept that they rue being indecisive. Many others will blame their impulsiveness in taking decisions that led to poor stock selection.

Never forget that it is only when you can bite the bullet that you can lead the charge. Every leader has invariably reached the top by getting bruised and battered in the battle field of life. What has set them apart is not just their doggedness and ability but their ability to take crucial decisions at critical junctures. At times their decisions could have backfired and send them hurtling down the steep slope of success but with renewed vigor and enthusiasm they took the decision to battle their way up.

Remember : Some people, however long their experience or strong their intellect, are temperamentally incapable of reaching firm decisions. James Callaghan

Try this:

  1. Play a game of snakes and ladders but here is the twist to make you be aware of decision making. Every time you roll the dice you have a choice to accept the number that comes up or to pass the move except if the number that is thrown up moves your counter to a slot with a snake, in which case you go down to the tail of the snake. Check how and when you make the ‘decision’ to pass your turn .Are there times you felt you made a mistake because you made the decision ‘to pass your turn or not to pass your turn’?
  2. Take a look at the video by one of the more popular lecturers at Harvard, Prof. Michael Sandel who is taking a module on the Moral Side of Murder. Remember to pause the video after he asks the first set of questions and make it a point to make ‘your DECISION’ to the question he asks. Also ensure you are clear why you made that decision.  Then continue the video till he asks the second set of questions based on a scenario he describes. Again pause the video and make a decision based on the question.  Perhaps a different facet of ‘decision making’ will emerge and challenge you. Click here to view the video http://tinyurl.com/yey37oe

 This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog


The way to change MYSELF

Many people have ideas on how others should change; few people have ideas on how they should change. Leo Tolstoy

There is plenty of free advice floating around, most of it liberally dished out by ordinary folks who believe they have a solution to everyone else’s problem. Sadly in most cases if the problem is closer home, perhaps at the doorsteps of those who dish out these pearls of wisdom, they would grapple to come to grips with it. This sound ironic considering how appropriate the advice sounded for someone else but alas its potency seemed to vanish when a inch of it is applied at home. The conclusion that one can draw is that any advice given must first be tried and tested by those giving it before it is freely distributed around.

Here are four situations in the average person’s life where advice is often sought and given but rarely digested in the same form if the giver of the advice has to digest it himself// herself

Parenting and the generation gap. Each successive generation grapples with the problem of handling the younger generation. Each generation also gets ample advice from the previous generation most of which is very sound and based on good experience. The problem is that there is still a huge gap between us and the next generation which we normally try to rationalize and explain failing which we emotionalize the issue and pressurize. What we fail to understand is that we need to change with the times and adapt to the ways of a changing younger generation.

Facing the humdrum of everyday life. The daily grind of work that is the destiny of every individual rich or poor, young or old, healthy or sick often gets monotonous and boring. For others we would suggest a variety of solutions to cope with this situation. We could suggest job rotation, brining about variety in the job, finding creative ways to do the repetitive job, looking out for intrinsic motivations and where possible change jobs. The very same advice somehow seems to lose its charm, its appeal and its magic properties when we attempt to charge up our own monotonous everyday life. A major reason for this is our coziness and comfort of aligning with the known devil rather than risking it with a new devil as a result of which the very advice we give others ends up being impotent and ineffective to rescue us from the hellish rigors of daily life.

Managing life changing challenges. Change comes in many forms. While the furious pace of technological and scientific changes eases life in many ways mastering their functionality can be quite a change to manage. Remember the first time one tried to master the mouse on the computer. Imagine the challenge for those in the older age bracket.  More difficult are the emotional changes that challenge us be it death of a loved one, breakdown of relationships, pain of separation, job loss and the challenges caused by ill health and related trauma. Our problem is our inability to adopt and embrace the advent of technology and make peace with the upheavals brought about by the emotional changes.

Bidding good bye to life. Each of us comes with our expiry date stamped and hardcoded in our destiny. Yet being prepared to accept that reality is an extremely painful and heart wrenching prospect. While we would in all earnestness and honesty give courage to a dying person by drawing their attention to the goodness of afterlife and the prospect of never ending peace and happiness, when we are merely asked to even think of an epitaph for our self the task seems frightening, ludicrous and insane. We do not fear death itself but the prospect of leaving behind all those we love for we believe that they are the real possessions that matter.

Remember: The greatest discovery of all time is that a person can change his future by merely changing his attitude.  Oprah Winfrey

Try this:

  1. Write down the 3 most annoying things about the younger generation. (If you are a youngster write down 3 most annoying things about the older generation.) Now jot down 2 reasons that you think are why these seem to annoy. Perhaps you now get a better perspective of the other side.
  2. Who are the 3 people who you would like to speak to in the last moments of your life? What would you like to tell them?
  3.  Here are two links to help you connect with 2 heroes who coped with drastic CHANGE in their lives.

 This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog


Being grateful and appreciative

Please teach me to appreciate what I have before time forces me to appreciate what I had. Susan L. Lenzkes

By nature the human race is rarely satisfied. We are never pleased with our own self; be it our physical mental and intellectual abilities. We find fault with our relationships, our material possessions, and our work, our world in which we live and often feel uncomfortable with our own thoughts, feelings and desires. The root of all these is our obsession with comparing with what others have and craving for what we do not have  in the mistaken belief that possessing it will bring us happiness and peace. The problem is not one of possession but one of our inability to fully appreciate and relish what we are blessed with.

Our penchant to take all that we are blessed with for granted perhaps is the biggest single reason for our unhappiness. Having a loving family, a healthy life, adequate monetary support and a decent standard of living are all special blessings we are privileged to have. Just look around at the humongous population around us who do not posses even a meager amount of the comforts and personal riches both tangible and intangible that we are fortunate to have. We may for example fully appreciate the value of being fully fit only when we have a serious illness or maybe a fall that has temporarily incapacitated us. We often take our parents for granted, resent their loving but nagging ways or find fault in their outdated thinking and conservative ways, but miss them terribly when they are not around.

Comparisons are the millstone that keeps dragging us down the waters of daily life for we flounder and drown in the misery of pining for what others posses and we do not and what we desperately crave for. Be it the latest gadgets, the trendiest fashion statement, the cool tag funky gimmicks we want to be seen as having it all. We psyche ourselves into believing that without being accepted as part of the modern culture we are aborigines living in the deepest part of the urban jungle. Envy, greed and jealousy are the trio of emotions that wreck our daily living and turns it into a pure hell for we are constantly hurting inside hating the ones who show off and antagonize us. What we fail to really appreciate is the reality that it is our thoughts that antagonize us not their possessions.

It is our negative mindset and propensity to be critical that is the coup de grace that firmly ensures that we wallow in self misery and suffer imaginary ignominy.  Rather than see the good of people, things or events those who are negative will seek out the potential problems, the possible downside and the perceived ineptitudes that could disgrace one.  This perhaps explains the compulsive urge of people to splurge ostentatiously on weddings and funerals. The fear that one would be labeled miserly, tasteless and undignified pressurizes one to go overboard without rhyme or reason.  Instead of sticking to the simple, the time honored and the affordable, if one seeks to answer all the detractors, the critics and the self proclaimed socialites we would be only desperately seeking in vain to please others at the cost of never being pleased ourselves.  The beauty of tradition, the personal touch in simplicity and the  peace of mind one experiences in limiting our wants are what craves appreciation and is common sense.

Remember: “When one’s expectations are reduced to zero, one really appreciates everything one does have”  Stephen Hawking

Try this:

  1. Have a look at the video on the armless pilot Jessica Cox http://tinyurl.com/5t5of6s and appreciate her self belief. Ask yourself if you have a fraction of her self belief to attempt something you are passionate about but feared daring.
  2. Choose one of the following three and tell yourself why you appreciate it
  • Flowers – Tulip / Lotus/ Lily
  • Animal – Rhino/ Alligator/ Wild boar
  • Fruits – Lemon/ Cherry/ Figs
  • Places –  Amazon jungles/ Kalahari desserts/ Siberia

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

Self belief unlocks many locks

It is the heart always that sees, before the head can see. Thomas Carlyle

How often have you experienced the strange feeling of either something going very right or a premonition of something unfortunate and then seeing things happen to confirm your feelings? How often have you listened to your hearts calling and despite more logical advice pursued your own instincts and triumphed? Are there times when you met people and felt uncomfortable and therefore limited your interactions which later proved to be a blessing in disguise? If you have dared to be different, furrowed a solo path, given in to your passions and always feel on top of the world then you are one of those fortunate people who believed in themselves and worked to realize your dreams.

What is common in all the experiences above is that when one sees with the heart one can feel; when one sees with the head you need to get it confirmed logically. Today you believe that pictures can be transmitted through the air and seen on the other side of the globe because you have seen television and internet work. Ever imagined how the people who were instrumental in developing these technologies could dare to attempt it?  They answer lies in their self belief in their knowledge, their ability and their visualization. It is when one believes in ones self that one can dare to think big, think different, get the courage to attempt the impossible and persist without losing heart.  Self belief helps one open up numerous locks that may have trapped our faith, our skills, our passion, our imagination and our momentum.

An important prerequisite for self belief is a positive attitude. If we lack the positive attitude we are prone to see the negatives in things and the seeds of self belief will never grow in such an unfertile environment. All great triumphs of men and women are primarily the result of their self belief which in turn reaffirms the positive attitude that these people nurtured all along. Imagination and creative thinking will help one to hone the art and skill of self belief. It doesn’t take much to follow the beaten path, to traverse the road that others have or to simply trudge along following the herd.  When one develops a vivid imagination, is open to a wide variety of influences that fertilizes the thinking and can creatively infuse daring into thought, self belief slowly takes roots and lines the pathways to experimentation, rework and triumph.

Persistence is the hammer that nails down triumph through self belief. Far too often our self belief does not fructify into triumph simply because we give up too soon. When failures beset our efforts we tend to lose faith rather than focus on alternatives. It is those who have continued with their quest despite the many odds and obstacles who live their self belief and prove themselves. The real pin that pricks and bursts our self belief is our inability to cope with criticisms. There will always be many who either because they lack the visualization or because they are risk averse or they do not have faith in you who will criticize and dissuade one from pursing ones passion. Without being hurt or shaken by these critics, one needs to focus on the goal and keep believing in ones own dream. Else one would soon give in to the critics and find ourselves caught between our passion and their logic and then we would no longer be listen with our heart. Listen / see/ feel with the heart and then you will see/ touch / experience with all your other senses.

Remember: “Keep your dreams alive. Understand to achieve anything requires faith and belief in yourself, vision, hard work, determination, and dedication. Remember all things are possible for those who believe.” Gail Devers

Try this:

  1. Try and play the game Freecell available on the windows platform. It is a card game and there are over 30,000 games that you can play. Technically each game can be solved. So with this ‘self belief’ attempt to play each of these games and solve the game Fanatical player use the drop down menu to go systematically and choose  games in serial order and solve each one before they proceed to the next.
  2. Many of us have some latent talent which we keep hidden from the world for fear of being laughed at. This is a good opportunity to exhibit ones talent be it in cooking, singing, writing poetry, dancing, mimicking, quizzing, being a host of a show, calligraphy, etc. Choose 3 of your passions and attempt to participate at least at a local level competition. The worst thing that can happen is that you may not win but what you would have gained is self confidence.


This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

Duty Calls

The habit of doing one’s duty drives away fear. Charles Baudelaire

Many of our fears stem from our tardy and lethargic behavior which results in us postponing our work, avoiding work and taking our duties casually. As a result suddenly the piled up work, the extensive rework that we have to do and the unavoidable deadlines that loom in front of us frighten us and the resultant stress and tensions scare us even more. When one objectively looks at the situation we make the startling realization that most of our fears are self created and possibly completely avoidable if only we were more diligent and hardworking.

Very often our problem of doing our duty efficiently emits from the uncomfortable and painful realty, that we don’t even know what our exact duties are. This is partly due to us being haphazard by nature but largely due to being ill organized and unplanned when getting to work. The way out is to take time out and attempt to clarify to ourselves what are the key jobs that we must do and ideally we must have fixed time frames to finish of the tasks. It also helps tremendously if we can prioritize our duties so that we cover all of them efficiently.

The next most common problem relates to our work style and our habit of putting off unpleasant tasks. We will stall, delay, attempt to avoid, try and delegate, deny, refuse or ignore those tasks that in our view are unpleasant and unappreciated. Conveying bad news for example is the least favored duty anyone fancies. Remember the time when we got a bad progress report card in school and we worried sick the whole night about the consequences. We muster courage to show it to our parent just a minute before leaving for school in the fond hope that tempers will cool down by evening. We actually end up getting a triple whammy for we are berated for trying to hide the report card, then for the poor performance and we have already spend a whole night in tossing and turning and visualizing  the most frightening consequences.

Perhaps our own work ethics creates the maximum problem for us. Sheer laziness and tardiness accounts for the bulk of the problem related to our abjecting our duties. . This followed closely by our personal weakness of being meticulous to a fault in doing ordinary tasks or completely casual and irresponsible when having to do important and critical tasks. On one hand one may spend hours on sprucing up our homes to receive an important visitor but at the same time we may conveniently put of deadline bound tasks like paying bills or filing the tax returns since there may be provisions to pay a fine to make up. In effect our style of work puts mental pressure on us for we are most worried about how the guests will react to the house despite our best efforts and at the  same time dread paying the whopping fines for not paying dues on time; the bottom line is that we still do not change.

 Remember: Excellence begins when you go beyond the call of duty.

Try this:

  1. What do you consider as your 3 primary duties to the following people?
  • Your parents
  • Your spouse
  • Your children
  • Your friends
  • Your society at large
  1.  List out the following
  • Apart from the daily chores what are the 3 duties that you have to do at least once weekly for the family
  • What are those 3 duties which you know will make you worried if you do not perform them on time?
  • List out 3 tasks that you hate to do and examine how you handle to tasks when they occur.

 This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog   www.poweract.blogspot.com 

The focus of prayer

We have to pray with our eyes on God, not on the difficulties. Oswald Chambers

It is typical for most people to pray either as a ritual or when I desperation and in both cases the focus is our own paranoia. As a ritual we pray because we are afraid of divine wrath that may befall us and when we are desperate we automatically gravitate to seek divine assistance. It is significant to note that in both cases it is our self centered interest that is the bait that lures us into prayer whereas real prayer is a mix of spontaneous thanks, praise and a reaching out to god. This means our focus should be on GOD and not our personal motives or hidden agenda.

Our difficulty is that we believe in a god more because of our upbringing that focused attention on GOD, but there are many times we seem to take God for granted and/ or  wonder about the truth of GOD’s existence. Most times we have that niggling doubt that stops us from freely acknowledging God’s presence in our life. We pray without faith, we pray mechanically and we pray superfluously and more often than not we simply chant in unison with no understanding of what we are saying. When we pray without feeling, we cannot hope for our prayers to be answered, we lack the faith to believe our prayers will be answered and we are often blinded to the reality that our prayers are answered in different ways.

Since prayer is a communication with GOD, it is essential that we are able to visualize the recipient of the communication. The message has to be tailored to suit the understanding of the receiver of the communication. By focusing only on our self centered message we miss out on the opportunity to interact with GOD spontaneously and share from the bottom of our hearts. More critical is the reality that with focus on our message, which mostly is all about our wants and needs, we do not LISTEN to GOD’s communication to us. Far too many times, we never get what we seek, but in the long run we realize that we got something much more valuable than what we sought. Eg. We don’t get the marks we want but as a result we take up an education which is not out first choice. Later we realize that we got the perfect career choice.

More than anything else is the reality that when we focus on God, we seem to be able to get inspired in finding solutions to our dilemma. We also realize that our problems are really minuscule as compared to those problems of others and that many solutions are within our own grasp. Instead when we focus on our difficulties, we believe that we have passed the buck to someone more powerful who is expected to solve the problem. Thereafter, our urge to resolve the problem by using our own means is not considered a very favored option. Finally focusing on GOD gives us a peace of mind that whatever the outcome it is GOD’s will.

Remember: By my definition, prayer is consciously hanging out with God. Being with God in a deliberate way.  Malcolm Boyd

Try this:

  1. Make it a point to have 3 special intentions focused on our nation, the world at large and some individual known to you in your prayers. Have new  intentions  periodically if needed.
  2. Think of 3 specific instances in the past when your prayers remained unanswered. Reflect if you focused on God or the problem while praying. How much impact did the unanswered prayers have in your life? Was the impact positive or negative in your view?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

Courage of conviction

God grant me the courage not to give up what I think is right, even though I think it is hopeless. Admiral Chester W. Nimitz

All of us have the ability to passionately argue for what we believe is the right point of view and we can be both very adamant and equally vehement in sticking to our point of view even if those opposing us pick a few holes in our arguments. However, when it comes to actually standing up for our point of view when it matters, very very few of us have the courage and tenacity to take up the cause and pursue the matter till its logical end. In our previous post yesterday, we talked about ‘translating good intentions into actual deeds and this is precisely what we are focusing on today. We often give up not because we do not believe in our cause but we think it is a hopeless case since there may be a lot of vested interests in the opposing point of view, the opponents are far too strong, we lack the guts or we simply rationalize that the end result is just not worth the fight.

One reason most of us do not commit to what we believe in is because, far too many of us are armchair critics. It is easy to be one. All we need to do is spout our criticisms loudly, vehemently and dogmatically. If we out smarted all we need to do is sulk and slink away. Other times we can wave the flag of our beliefs and loudly proclaim that we were part of the original rooters for the belief even though we may have done nothing note worthy other than lending our lung power. You will find many such people in social service organizations, voluntary organizations and in social gatherings. In fact we see our own conversations in get together and parties, it invariably revolves around criticizing the government, the organizers, the local administration, our surroundings and society. In almost all cases, we would never ever offer our services in addressing the issue nor would we volunteer to be part of a set up which is keen to solve the problem.

For us to bite the bullet when it comes to standing up for our point of view, the first essential is a passionate belief in our point of view. Unless one is passionate about the cause, it is very difficult to convince ourselves that the fight is worth it. One reason many of us are not too passionate about things is because we are comfortable with the idea that the world maybe be in turmoil and it is best we adjust to it. Nothing then can shake us from our ‘ignorance is bliss’ attitude unless of course we get directly sucked into a problem. Often by then, we do not have too many backers for us for most of friends have subtlety hinted that our problems is ours and they can only sympathize. The second requirement is developing a tenacious attitude. This is partly inborn but largely the result of having developed not mere sympathy but a nature that is empathically inclined. This means that we don’t just stand by and acknowledge a problem but actively get involved in solving it. This requires patience to understand, a willingness to be involved and courage to commit to the cause.

Remember: You will see it when you believe it

Try this:

  1. Pick up at least 2 social causes one related to the general concerns of society and one related to a passion of yours and outline 5 ways you can actively contribute to it. Eg. You could be interested in the improving the general hygiene of your locality and also be passionate about cause regarding pets.
  2. Identify one old age home, one orphanage, one school for the physically challenged and another for the mentally challenged. Now make a beginning by visiting each one in turns once in two months at least. Examine your feelings, your learning, your changing style of empathy etc.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

Taking up challenges

“What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything? ”Vincent van Gogh

Even as I write on this quote, I can see its relevance immediately. I have just returned from an exhausting day long trip and it is 1.30 am but since I haven’t written the blog I am determined to do it. However I was assailed by self doubts, my body was screaming with tiredness and the urge to throw in the towel very compelling. However the quote jabbed my conscious hard and injected a fresh dose of enthusiasm, partly by its compelling truth but mainly by its taunting challenge.

Many of us would have gone through a similar crisis where the spirit seems willing but the flesh perceives itself to be weak. These are the critical times in life when we need to find our inner resources deep within us and motivate ourselves to pick up the challenge. Despite our personal misgivings we must plod on in hope and then we will be pleasantly surprised to discover that we had badly underestimated ourselves. This new discovery about ourselves triggers a chain reaction and suddenly we find that we are more energized, very positive and find courage to welcome more challenges. Our life suddenly seems a lot different than what it was when we merely breathed, ate and lived devoid of too much of plan, purpose or passion.

Unless we have a plan for ourselves, we would be simply drifting through life with neither any interest nor any focus. The unrealized potential of the numerous people we know, clearly vindicates the reality that without a plan people are bound to exist but  end up wasting their abilities, talents and potential. On the other hand the numerous success stories of the apparently average person, sharply focuses attention on how these individuals identified their core strengths and formulated a plan to leverage that strength. For a plan to succeed there must be larger purpose to which it is aligned. The purpose that we are set to focus on must be positive in tone, create value and generate goodwill. Corporate mission and vision statements reflect the purpose and plan of the organization.

No plan or purpose by itself gives results unless backed by passion. It is when the inner urge overrides the negative emotions that we actually gain courage and confidence for then we are sized by the need to accomplish and succeed. When we lack courage to attempt we are setting ourselves up for failure. Passion provides that one critical ingredient that ignites mind, body and soul to align as one, work in tandem and persevere even if our initial attempts fail. Our reward is in the exuding that we stuck to our task and achieved what we set out to do. The one common trait in all those who have  no passion is reflected in them behaving like wimps constantly complaining, frequently failing and wallowing in self pity. Unless one dares to attempt we will never realize the true potential we have within us be it our talents, abilities or skills. The most important lesson would be the discovery that failure never kills, opportunities need to be sought out and exploited and success is yours for the asking if you have to courage to attempt again and again.

Remember: “You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don’t try.”  Beverly Sills

Try this:

  1. Outline the three passions you were keen to indulge in but never did. Choose one of these passions and make a determined bid to be fully committed to that passion. Eg. Wanting to play the mouth organ
  2. Examine some of your worst fears. Choose one and plan with a purpose as to  how you will go about minimizing your fears. Start working on that fear an attempt to regain your confidence. E.g. You  are scared of snakes. Begin by watching some program on snakes on TV. Thereafter try to visit a snake park and if bold enough to handle  a snake.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

The riches of friendship

They are rich who have true friends. Thomas Fuller

It is not said for nothing, that a dog is man’s best friend.  A dog is completely loyal, non judgmental, gives itself completely to its master and would never ever betray the trust placed in it. If there is a flaw in a dog, it is its inability to communicate in words, but there again it more than makes up by its phenomenal non verbal communication, the furious wag of its tail, snuggling up and its mournful demeanor when it senses tragedy and pain around. Can we claim to have a human friend who has all these attributes? If you can honestly say yes, then you are the RICHEST person in this world.

Our need for friendship and companionship emits from the reality that we are social creatures who cannot live in isolation. When seen from this point of view, it follows that we will naturally socialize, befriend people, perhaps dislike some and be indifferent to the vast majority. We would also identify some people with whom we share a good connect, feel comfortable in their company, trust them even though occasionally they may hurt you, rush to them when emergency calls and magnanimously forgive them when they may have wronged us. The common name given to such a relationship that evolves is friendship. It may begin as a casual acquaintance, with more interaction it can develop into a friendship, with proximity it can blossom into a good friendship and with intimacy and trust it can flower into an intimate friendship.

Most friendships would be seen as having a strong commonality like similar age group, social status, financial status, shared value systems and styles and of course common interests and strong mutual bonding. However, there could also plenty of friendships that hinge simply on the pure comfort level that people enjoy with no other major commonality to speak about. Comfort level holds the key to enduring friendships. We might have strongly differing views on many issues but if we have the comfort level and trust a strong friendship will naturally blossom and there would be strong ties that bind. In such intimate friendships there can be gross misunderstandings, deep hurts caused by one another and even the threat of broken friendship might loom in the background, but most intimate friendships over come it as long as the ego does not play spoilt sport. Saying sorry and the magnanimity of forgiveness must be embedded in an in the friendship to qualify to be called an intimate friendship.

The bond of friendship transcends widely differing thought process, diametrically opposite styles and even possibly complete different value systems simply because friends find a treasure of love that tramples over these differences.  Some friendships involve tremendous sacrifices like lovers who are hounded by societal pressures or standing by a friend accused of gross misdeeds. It is these visible examples of boding that become so priceless that such friends actually believe that they have the greatest treasure the treasure of enduring friendship. In some extreme cases, friendships may have to be sacrificed for it to be really realized as it would happen if two ardent lovers have to give up their passions just so that social stigma and ostracization will not make life hell for either one or both of the parties involved. The ultimate testimony to the riches of friendships is ironically in the sacrifice that a person makes with his life to ensure longevity for the friend. The battle field is resplendent with examples of such rich and heroic friendships.

Remember: “Truly great friends are hard to find, difficult to leave, and impossible to forget.”

Try this:

  1. Can you think of the 3 greatest sacrifices you have made for a friend? Did you feel these sacrifices were acknowledged by the friend? Do you regret not having stood by your friend at any time? Do you remember the time when a friend let you down badly? How did you feel and how did you react then?
  2. Read the poignant Eulogy to a Dog by George Graham Vest by clicking this link http://www.milwinkennel.com/poems/FaithfulFriend.htm

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