Tag: plans

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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Tip toe towards possibilities

Tip toe towards possibilities

Everyone nurtures dreams, has aspirations and hopes to have a wonderful life. Yet very few fulfill their yearnings. In fact, the majority of people live a relatively unsatisfied, regret filled and obscure life, not because they did not have the potential or the opportunities but because they did not proactively respond to the opportunities provided by life. To make your life more meaningful, satisfying and fulfilling you need to attempt the following:

Set a goal The biggest challenge life presents is by offering each one so many options that focusing on what one really and passionately seeks becomes a humongous task. We indulge in all our fancies without committing ourselves to any; we seek happiness in pursuing various ideas/ thoughts/ dreams without really focusing on one single passion. We find it hard to discover our passion because we are distracted by so many attractive alternatives. Hence one needs to spend time in reflecting, analyzing, understanding and identifying ones personal ‘mission statement’ that will encompass what your life’s epitaph should read like.  You clearly know the exact direction to get going, you set the right tone for your future mission and you can then track your progress and make adjustments to ensure you reach your goal on time.

Plan your way forward – In real life when one is planning a holiday, notice how much planning is done to ensure that everything essential for the journey is assembled, packed, checked, rechecked before we embark to our destination. Unfortunately in the journey of life we wake up each morning and hope that we manage to stumble through the day and benefit from our waking hours. Perhaps that accounts for our feeling of despondency of a wasted day. We need to plan, prepare and proactively work on making our life mission a successful journey. Perhaps you need to upgrade some life skills, perhaps you need to ensure you get the right companions on board, perhaps one needs to take smaller steps before risking the giant leaps.

Begin in earnest – The biggest stumbling block in life is inertia. Many of us require someone to push us. Others search in vain for the right time to begin. Yet there are others perennially finding excuses to not begin. Others start and falter because they lack the petrol of life called ‘enthusiasm’. Just like the deadline set by the transportation which we have to board to begin the journey, we need to set a date and work backward to ensure we are ready to board the journey of life. The journey of life is not getting up each morning and bumbling through the day. That is inevitable for anyone who is alive. The real journey of life is when we set out to fulfill a pre planned mission that we have set for ourselves. Find the right motivation, ample enthusiasm and the right companions so that your journey is one of hope, joy and fulfillment.

Keep going – Unlike a regular journey where one reaches and enjoys the place before returning back, the journey of life is a continuum. There is no specific destination to reach but a clear goal to attain. You need to enjoy the journey and make the best of the places you reach. At times the journey gets tedious, other times the place you reach is uninteresting sometimes the companions get irritating and often one gets weary and tired. Yet that is when we need to take baby steps or occasionally tip toe so that we do not lose the momentum and more importantly we keep progressing.

Try these:

  1. If you were invited to act in a play ( something you have never ever done before) or asked to join a month long trip to Antarctica or selected to train as a jungle safari guide for a month, which option would you choose and why? What steps would you take to try and make your dream come true?
  2. Attempt any or some of the following:
  • Try reading magazines / books of different genres that you have never tried before.
  • Visit some interesting / varied places in your city that you have never gone to.
  • Eat some cuisine that you have never tried before or visit eateries that offer off beat food.
  • Identify 5 random people who you can observe closely. Observe them for a few days and identify at least two positive qualities or habits that they display. Try and adopt one of those habits and qualities.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Dare, do, win…

02-07-01-17strength-comesWhen a baby learns to take his/ her first step, it is always tentative and for the first few times it will fall down. Yet, it continues to trust its instincts and when he/ she has mastered the art, there is a perceptible sense of achievement and happiness on the child’s face as well as on the faces of the onlookers. We as adults have lost that sense of adventure, we do not trust our instincts and more than anything, we fear failure and so prefer not to attempt something new, different and exciting. Our strengths remain out of sight, undiscovered and we go to our grave clutching our potential.  Perhaps that also explains why we fear death; because suddenly there is so much more to achieve.

Obviously then, the challenge for us is to dare, do and win. Yes you can, if align the following within yourself and begin:

Self belief: Unless you believe you can do something, chances are that you won’t attempt it. Wish self belief comes the thrill of the challenge.  If you do not have self belief you would end to find excuses not to dare. Questions like why should I? What is in it for me? How will it benefit me? May be it is not my cup of tea etc. would constantly keep niggling you.  You would then prefer to ignore the challenge than confront it.

Planning: While self belief will give you an impetus, a motivation to begin, never attempt a challenge like a casual dare. Outlining a plan to succeed is the key to every challenge. It is also the way to ensure that you have clarity about your objective, a clear road map forward and the required resources to achieve success. E.g. If Public Speaking is your fear, simply getting up and blabbering when forced to, may not give you the desired result. You must plan your topic, prepare for it, practice it and then create the opportunity to demonstrate your ability.

Daring: Self belief will give you the motivation, planning will largely insure your success but without daring, you may falter and fail to start. Daring comes from visualizing success, from having confidence that you have planned and prepared well and from the self belief that you will succeed. Sometimes, daring comes from having no alternative. This is typically what happens in a class room presentation, when every student has to overcome his/ her fear of public speaking for there is no alternative. Remember it is the first time that is the hardest.

Focus: Our limitations are accentuated when we lose focus while attempting the challenge. If we let ourselves be distracted by some blips or glitches that we encounter despite the best of planning the chances are we let our confidence slip. Focus on the resources available, delve into your creative inner self and calm your pounding heart to regain your focus. E.g. when learning to drive initially we grip the steering wheel too hard, we tend to view the accelerator, brake and clutch separately thereby stalling the car more often. It is only with some practice that we tend to see that the three have to work in tandem and that we need to relax a bit more when steering. The focus must be even and that happens when one has sufficient practice and then expertise takes over.

Persistence: Remember the time you learned to cycle or swim. Chances are that you fell, scraped yourself when attempting to cycle or when in the pool drank a lot of water or felt yourself drowning. You mastered the art only because a scraped knee or the fear of sinking did not kill your self belief. The same resilience is called into action whenever you dare to do something different, something challenging, something you have never attempted. There is always the possibility that you may not succeed in your first attempt but persistence is what ensures you succeed.

Look back on the thrill of having overcome many a challenge when you followed your creed to dare, do and win.   It is the same thrill that now beckons you; you suddenly discover both your potential and your strength; the happiness that you get is a huge bonus.

Try these:

Make a list of dares / challenges that you would like to attempt. It could be as dramatic as parachuting or conquering a fear of holding a reptile (like a snake) in your hands. Dare, do and win is next.

List out some of your latent desires e.g. writing poetry, having an exhibition of your art work, singing on stage etc. Assuming you have a decent talent in the respective field, take up the challenge to do this year.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Sucess is all about adopting stubborn goals and flexible methods

17-5 July 15 -Stubborn Goals and Flexible methodsThe constant challenge in life, is to sift options and zoom in on what one desires. This is because change is the only constant in life and change always redefines the future. When the future is being constantly redefined, every individual is required to make course corrections. However a course correction does not mean we need to change our destination but merely the route map and mode of getting there. Of course dramatic and major changes may require one to change the goals but even then the alternative chosen would be equally important and challenging. What does not change, is the desire to reach our goal. Success and achievement in life therefore hinge on how well you choose your goal, map out your way and stick to your plans. Here is a road map to success.

Choosing the right goal Right from school days when we have to choose the optional subjects, moving on to choosing the career path and later life goals in the chosen path we are constantly having do decide our goals. Most of the time we are confused, other times we realize our goals are beyond our capability or passion and then we have to revise our goals.

Deciding on a plan of action If selecting a goal is challenging, choosing the plan of action is relatively simple since the goal is clear. What is important is to think thorough the plans, being clear about the assumptions and also outlining the alternative plan/s. Backup plans are vital for they provide a quick alternative should our original plans get derailed. However, there is a real danger that we can get dogmatic and fixated about our original plan and approach. This could create problems if one does not factor in the numerous changes that come about, because of the dynamic environment around.

Reviewing the progress A plan of action is only as good as the progress one makes using it. It is imperative therefore that one constantly reviews how one is progressing and make adjustments for the deviations if any. All plans must have milestones and timelines and wherever possible assumptions based on which the milestones and timelines have been set. These will provide the yardstick for reviewing the progress.

Revising the plans – This is extremely difficult because we have to first acknowledge that we have slipped on our plans. Secondly it could also suggest that our plans were not well thought out. Thirdly it could imply we have to relook our personal competence and commitment as also keep us wondering if our goals are too ambitious or if we have the capability to execute our plans and realize the goals. Despite these self doubts and apparent set back, we have to look at revision of plans as a necessary detour to get back on track.

Continuing the journey – Whether we continue with our original plans or move on with the revised plans, what is important is to keep moving on. Sometimes we are bogged down by frustration, the slow progress, our inability to cope with pressures and setbacks; these are times when we are tempted to give up and stop. Focused and well directed efforts are never wasted but the progress and results may not always be visible. Faith is what will sustain and help one to push ahead no matter what the constraints.

Enjoying the success Since success will eventually come to those who believe in their dreams and goals, it essential that one learns to relish and enjoy success. Many a time, even when we reach the destination we are reluctant to appreciate and recognize that we have pursued and attained out goal. This is partly because along the way, we have lost hope or because we undervalue our success by comparing it with the achievements of others or because we have reset our goals to much bigger and loftier ones. While resetting goals, especially aiming for loftier goals is commendable, not valuing achievements would be like eating bland food for mere sustenance.

Try these:

  1. Go back and review your New Year Resolutions. How far have you succeeded? It is half way through the year and have you a list of things which you have not even started work on? Is it because you didn’t write down the action plan to achieve them?
  2. Choose one of the following as your major area of concern and write down the goal you hope to achieve this year so as to minimize your concern. Also outline the road map with timelines to help you attain it. If you already have a plan review it and make changes if needed to speed up the process of attaining your goal.
  • Improving your finances / savings
  • Bringing about a better work –life balance
  • Adopting a healthier lifestyle.
  • Attaining a significant professional / academic growth
  • Improving and strengthening your current family relationships
  • Working out an overseas holiday trip with family.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com