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Posts Tagged ‘self control’

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

www.poweract.blogspot.com

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22 - 6Aug15-channelise your angerAll our negative qualities have possibilities of being harnessed and channelized into productive action. Negative qualities are akin to nuclear power, which is largely understood as being a destructive force because of the Atom Bomb and is unfortunately not well known for being a rich source of productive energy, used widely for generating electricity. Anger is a common enough human impulse and largely manifests itself in sudden and provocative outbursts often laced with violence and expletives. The consequences are fear, equally reactive anger, mistrust, bad blood and a breakdown of meaningful communication. Anger converts itself in disruptive, unproductive, wasted energy.

Since anger is a natural response that we are all born with, we cannot eliminate that emotion. However, it is possible for each of us to harness its power by our own proactive initiative and channelize it into a utilitarian energy that will bring us peace, happiness and results. Here are ways to channelize anger into productive energy:

Release it gently – When angry, most people react aggressively with a raised voice, a string of expletives, level unsubstantiated allegations, cast aspersions on others and vitiate the environment. At times, an expression of anger is justified in order to grab attention, emphasize authority, highlight the importance of an issue or merely to get rid of pent up emotion. However bursts of anger must be well controlled, appropriately directed and sparingly resorted to, so as to be effective. Ideally one must be able to channelize anger like a laser beam to pinpoint the problem and cull it before it spreads. Anger must not be expressive; it must not be demonstrative; it must only be sharp, incisive and administered in the right dosage and focused on resolving an issue without destroying the relationship.

Channelize it appropriately – When anger is expressed, it often transpires that there is more collateral damage done than intended. Often the anger is directed at the wrong person or issue, the expression of anger is completely disproportionate to the problem being tackled, it creates more psychological trauma than effective problem resolution and often on hindsight one would realize that it was both futile and stupid to have let off so much steam and become emotionally drained. To channelize anger appropriately the trick is to distinguish between a problem and a person. Never end up shooting the messenger. Do a root cause analysis and then focus on the real problem without flying off the handle impulsively.

Burn it up productively – President Abraham Lincoln once famously remarked that ‘Write a letter when angry and you would have written the best letter you ever regretted’. The beauty of the wisdom in that observation lies not in what is apparent but in the immense possibility it holds to productively burn up our anger. Express your anger in private; shout, scream, rave, rant, write down all your feelings, fling things around but do so when alone and then tear off what your wrote, clean up the mess you created and by then you would have regained your equilibrium and expended your pent up emotions. When angry take deep breathes and count to 10 if still angry count another 10 and so on till your breathing stabilizes and your anger subsidies. Don’t forget that anger is just one alphabet short of danger.

Make anger your anchor. – When there is a tempest in your life, frustration and anger coupled with self pity aggravate your plight. The anger that wells up within could turn into a poisonous gas that can explode; but you can, with a strong will and determination, rationalize and convert it into a strong anchor that will steady your thoughts and enable you to weather the storm. The satygraha movement that Gandhiji resorted to, is one of history’s best examples of how anger was anchored to help a nation win freedom from its foreign rulers. In daily life, if one is unfairly criticized and anger wells up within, use that energy to perform efficiently with vengeance and then prove your worth to those who criticized and tormented you. They will view you in a new light; with a wee bit of remorse and a large dose of admiration at your efficiency and equanimity that you displayed despite the provocation. Try not to react to anger but absorb the energy that anger generates and direct it towards a productive goal. Imagine yourself to be a batsmen using the pace of the ball to skillfully direct it between the fielders to score runs.

Try these:

  1. Recollect the times when you got really angry and how did you react to the provocation for that anger. On hindsight was you anger justified? Would you have reacted differently today?
  2. Which of the following styles do you adopt when angry? Now that you realize it, how would you try to avoid that approach?
  • Be sarcastic
  • Be explosive
  • Blame / criticize others
  • Keep your anger pent up
  • Be constantly irritated and complaining
  • Express self pity
  • Shun people and go into a shell

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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19- 23 July 15-Uncertainty has one certainty - possibiltiesLike change, that is a constant in our life, uncertainty is niggle that will never go. Each moment of our life, we are constantly processing fresh inputs and each input brings with it fresh perspectives for us to mull on. The human mind is largely programmed to preserve, protect and pre-empt threats and dangers and hence, every input we get is filtered through the lens of self preservation. As a result, uncertainty brings with it a sense of dread, fear and worries, which threaten to overshadow the one certainty that it offers – infinite possibilities. Once we accept that uncertainty will be a lifelong companion, then it is possible for us to see it as a shadow, that seems to lurk but is never threatening. That is when we learn to face the sun, put the shadow behind us and see the overpowering light of possibilities ahead of us.

Here are some ways of visualizing possibilities that can be leveraged to make life more interesting, happy and fulfilling.

Think positive – Since self preservation is a natural instinct in us, we have developed our senses to anticipate trouble as being equal to uncertainty ahead. As a result we always scan the future for trouble, difficulties, negativities and danger. While it is essential that we plan for any future eventualities, that should not be the fulcrum around which our life should revolve. Look ahead with anticipation, move ahead with confidence; don’t let a few hurdles stop you from proceeding ahead. The trick is to set your goals high and to visualize yourself setting out on an adventure towards that goal with zeal, enthusiasm and faith. Remember ‘ A ship is safe in the harbor, but that is not what it is built for’.

Seek opportunities – Most people balk at the thought of having to cross imaginary chasms. They simply avoid beginning the journey. On the other hand those who have attained success have always had the foresight and vision to seek opportunities in the midst of difficulties. The great scientist of the world especially those who have found cures for various ailments and diseases have not let their fear of the disease stop them from seeing an opportunity to find a cure for the same. There is risk, there is possibility of failure but there is also the sense of achievement, the joy of success and their vision of contributing for the larger good. Remember – A pessimist sees a difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees an opportunity in every difficulty’

Accept what can’t be changed – Every individual will definitely come across a situation that suddenly cascades into an avalanche of uncertainties. The death of a parent/ loved one, a sudden job loss, an unexpected health related issue etc. immediate trigger alarm, creates panic and disturbs our equilibrium. The situation is not of our making, yet it cannot be wished away of ignored. While the immediate shock is natural, it is essential that we come to grips with reality and begin to accept the situation. With a positive outlook, one can rationally seek out the positives that exist despite the not too pleasant situation you find yourself in. This will allow us to think with a calm mind, pick up our life once again and pursue our goals with purpose, passion and positivity. Remember – If you don’t like something change it; if you can’t change it, change the way you think about it. -Mary Engelbreit

Change things by being proactive – Be the change you want to see, is a common enough refrain. Yes you have to take that bold step to begin the change that you want in your life. Change that overcomes you by accident, would often overwhelm you but change that you set in motion, is largely controlled by you and you can often steer it to direction you want to go. Begin by making small changes in your own life. Self discipline is good way to begin. Progress from thereon, to taking the lead to change things that you strongly feel about. You are taking charge of the uncertainty ahead to steer it to a certainty that you have envisioned. Remember – “You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” A.A. Milne

Try these:

  1. Rearrange your home and office space. It would be a proactive beginning and would also allow you to feel the power that you posses to influence the world around you when you take some proactive steps.
  2. Arrange these in the order that applies to you; with the most problematic one listed first and going down the order. Outline steps to tackle these so that you are leveraging possibilities to eliminate / minimize your problems
  • Lack of self discipline
  • Indecision
  • Poor time management
  • Impulsive reactions
  • Quick temper
  • Procrastination
  • Pessimistic outlook

 This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

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13-2-Be true to yourself and discover ...

Like a dog chasing its tail in the fond hope of finding happiness there, the human race seeks to find happiness in the world around us. Unlike a dog that only has one tail to chase, we end up pursuing every strand of perceived happiness  largely materialistic, quite often competitively , at times egoistically and  when stressed spiritually. The trouble though is that, we seek happiness by being selfish, self centered and for self gratification. Interestingly when we are pursuing happiness focused largely on our self centered needs, unwittingly we are using what we perceive as the happiness of others as the benchmark for our own gratification and happiness. In short we covet what others have and when on the rare occasion we do manage to posses it, after a brief spell of ecstasy we look for something else for our self gratification and resultant happiness.

Now pause for a moment and try and recollect those moments of bliss that you experienced. Was it the time you received a praise for having done a good deed or was it the time you learned to balance a bicycle without falling off or was it the time you found a valuable that was lost or was it the time you scored the highest ever marks in your career or was it all of the above? Notice that in each of these moments of happiness, you were central to the moment. The thrill was in experiencing and cherishing the moments that belonged to you and you alone. There was no benchmark to measure it with, no competition that prodded you on, no ego that had to be satisfied; it was simply a personal wow moment.

The challenge is then to make the best of every moment that is yours. Worrying is perhaps the biggest thief of those moments. Instead the focus must be on getting on with what has to be done. Criticism if any that comes your way must be accepted with grace if it is justified else ignored when it is misdirected. The occasional failures must be seen as an opportunity to learn and better yourself.  The pain that comes with having to deal with tough tasks must be seen as a small price to pay in the larger scheme of things. Every small success that comes along must be embraced with warmth, cherished with delight and treasured as priceless. That is true happiness deservingly and exclusively yours.

Happiness is not just what comes from getting something or achieving something. The nectar of happiness is sweetest when we give. A smile is the simplest thing that we can freely give and receive manifold in return. A smile is an outer expression of an inner radiance. A word of praise or comfort, the warmth of a hug, an apology for a mistake, pardon to another for an indiscretion and thanks to anyone who deserves it are triggers of happiness. Similarly exercising control over our negative emotions be it anger, envy, jealousy, pride etc. help us realize our inner strength and translates into happiness in realizing the power of our own self control.

Happiness comes from knowing that by your thoughts and deeds YOU have left the world a better place.

Try this:

  1. List out the names of 5 individuals who you dislike immensely. Now try and outline 3 positive qualities that each of these individuals posses. Do you experience a lessening of your dislike because you have got a more objective understanding of these individuals? Now outline the one quality in the person that irritates you the most. Can you see this irritant as a minor one and ignore it? Do you feel happier for having excused the person for his/ her irritating ways?
  2. Make a list of 5 for each of the following
  • Your favorite jokes
  • Your favorite pictures
  • Your favorite songs
  • Your favorite movies
  • Your favorite teachers
  • Your favorite moments in life

How did you feel after having made the list? Did it bring back some fond memories?

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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As a social animal, man has to live with fellow human beings for sustenance, companionship and growth. Unfortunately man, unlike other animals that also live in groups or herds or prides has the compulsive unconscious urge to seek acceptance /approval of those around for every deed, action and indulgence. Even more unfortunately, man has also perfected the art of being a born critic and we easily find fault with people, happening and things around. When we analyze the behavior of the critic in us, we would realize that we have subconsciously become negative in our perception and thinking, our negativity has clouded our ability to be more discerning and appreciative and we are easily reconciled to failure, plead haplessness and find excuses to rationalize our personal lack of success.

Let us examine how each of these behaviors’ are self imposed and self limiting.

By being negative in our perception and thinking we let in self doubt creep in; we train ourselves to see the imperfections and we gravitate towards the bare minimum standards of acceptance so that we don’t seem to be failures. The fear of public speaking that an overwhelming majority of people suffer from is a classic case of our negative perception and thinking preoccupies us and restrains us from overcoming our fears.

Negativity clouding our ability to discern and be appreciative makes us succumb to the temptation of fault finding, self depreciation and failure prone. Even if someone else gives us a compliment we tend to play it down or deflect attention to something that takes the shine of the compliment. Similarly when opportunity presents itself we hesitate to take the initiative succumbing to our insecurities. We also naturally end up focusing on those failures that we may have encountered and completely ignore the numerous success that we have been privileged to embrace. Remember how our parents automatically scanned out report card to find the red lines that signified failure or quickly picked up on the lowest marks completing ignoring the numerous high scores we may have got.

By reconciling to failure, pleading haplessness and finding excuses, we do not give ourselves the opportunity to leverage our inherent strengths. Success is actually a culmination of effort most of it repetitive efforts despite failures. Many of us though give up at the first hurdle instead of persisting with hope and faith. We do not even make the effort of trying pleading haplessness or find excuses to wriggle out of a tough call. The overwhelming emotion that envelopes us is fear of failure and ridicule by others is actually the critic in us constantly whispering in our mind don’t embarrass yourself in front of others. How many of us who do poorly in our tasks began by saying ‘I don’t know what to do’ and later go on to say ‘ I am not capable of doing it’ and finally accepted failure by saying ‘ I just wasn’t cut out for it’. Notice that each of those statements are actually directed at others who maybe onlookers, co-participants or possibly evaluators and the statements are crude efforts to avoid any criticism.

The only way to tackle our fears is to confront it by being a participant and not a distanced critic. This is best done by visualizing success, anticipating and preparing for potential pitfalls and wholeheartedly embracing and enjoying the process. The real success would be in conquering one’s fears by setting yourself free of criticism, fear or failure.

Try this:

In the next one month ensure you attempt at least one of the following tasks that you have never attempted before

  • Learning a new form of dance
  • Easting with chopsticks
  • Learning to speak 10 sentences in a new language
  • Inviting friends to an exotic meal cooked entirely by you
  • Participating in 3 contests
  • Try your hand at origami

From the following situations, rate the situation that would embarrass you the most to the least. Reflect on why each situation gets the rating you have assigned.

  • Your boss getting hold of a love letter written to you.
  • You going for an important meeting post lunch and your shirt has a big stain because you spilt coffee on it at lunch time.
  • You excitedly greet and animatedly talk to a very charming person, who then gently tells you he/she is not the person you thought he/she was.
  • You are making an important presentation and by error click on a PPT you were studying of a competitor’s product.
  • You are with guests in a restaurant and despite the guests offer to foot the bill, insist that you will pick the tab only to discover that you forgot your wallet which contains the credit cards too.

 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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Have patience. All things are difficult before they become easy.
Saadi

Ask yourself if there are habits, mannerisms, techniques or behavioral traits that you are keen on changing for the better but cannot overcome yet. Perhaps you have attempted to change but gave it up or you have not even started the process of change because you imagine it being a tough task. The fact is that unlearning is as tough as learning a new task and picking up something new is also a challenge for we have to first go about it slowly, steadily and steadfastly. Bad habits are a prime example of how difficult it is to get over it, be it biting nails, being disorganized, not being punctual etc. Similarly acquiring a new skill be it driving, swimming or playing a new sport is challenging and often exasperating for our initial attempts are woefully inadequate and embarrassing to say the least. Yet, with a firm resolve and adequate motivation and loads of patience we can look back and admire the way we have conquered many a challenge.

A bigger challenge is putting up with situations and/ or people that you are not comfortable with. We may unwittingly find ourselves in situations not of our own making but something that we desperately wished we could ignore/ avoid or get over with. Since we cannot wish the reality away, the one virtue that we can fall back on to face the reality with calmness and hope is patience. The never ending wait at checkout counters or at the doctors clinic, the unavoidable visit to the dentist, the dreaded feedback from teachers, the annual appraisal exercise etc are but shades of the varied situations where patience is the only virtue that will help us face it square on. On the other end of the spectrum are people who really test our patience. Diffident children, nagging spouse, tyrannical bosses, irresponsible subordinates, irritating colleagues are just a few of those people who end up testing our patience.

Patience is a function of self control, hope, adaptability and tolerance. Unless we can restrain our natural urge to rebel against happenings that we dislike we would never get anywhere close to practicing patience. With self control we allow time to be the catalyst of change that we hope will be more to our level of acceptance and liking. It naturally follows that when we give sufficient time we have a hope that matters will proceed in a manner that we pine for. At times we add up the small changes that we see and make adjustments ourselves and try to adapt to the glimmer of hope that is provided by our self control. Tolerance is the glue that uniformly binds ones self control, hope and adaptability to manifest itself as a virtue we call patience.

Patience nearly always rewards us amply. Nature provides us wonderful examples of it. See the patience with which a spider spins its web and patiently waits for a prey to be snared in it. Look the wild animals in the jungle who stalk they prey patiently. Ever notice the patience of an angler baiting a fish? Has it ever occurred to you that the jugglers who display their skill with such dexterity spend hours patiently practicing their craft till they master it  and even then constantly keep honing their skill with practice? Perhaps you can recollect how you learnt cycling and later perhaps swimming or driving a four wheeler.

Remember: Have patience with all things, But, first of all with yourself.  Saint Francis de Sales

Try this:

  1. Take 3 balls and try to juggle it. If you can master that attempt the same with 4 balls. Alternatively try to master some card tricks that require a sleigh of hand.
  2. On your computer check out the games section and play the card game FREECELL. Technically every game can be solved. Go on test your own patience trying to solve each game.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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

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To have what we want is riches; but to be able to do without is power.  George MacDonald

Almost everyone would like to have more riches and yet most of us are able to make do with whatever we are blessed with. However making do with whatever we have is perhaps out of compulsion or it could be a compromise or perhaps even a conscious decision one takes with the objective of slowly building the riches or to save for a rainy day. If we are fortunate enough to have most of what we crave for it is possible that we are truly materially rich but despite these riches if one yearns for still more then satiating that will be a near impossible task.

On the other hand if one is able to see the riches, in what by common yardstick is considered below average or poor, then what we really posses is power. The power to accept the reality, the power to appreciate the frugal, the power to remain happy and the power to believe that life is both fair and blessed. In effect we have the power over desires, our wants, our cravings and ourselves. This might seem like bliss but if we in our innate desire to be modest, frugal and satisfied overlook the needs and wants of those around us, be it family, friends, colleagues etc. we would be misusing the power we have by being selfish, inconsiderate and pigheaded.

The reality though is that most of us think of riches in terms of material wealth without really appreciating the wealth we actually posses in terms of relationships, knowledge, networking, good health and above all peace of mind and happiness. It is these riches that we must seek to have in abundance and this ironically grows when we can share more of what we have with us with others. Nothing amplifies this as much as the burden we carry when we seek revenge. We believe that in carrying the hate for another and by executing our plan at the opportune moment we would attain a coveted desire that is rich beyond imagination. What we fail to realize is that the negativity, the anger, the burden of waiting are preventing us from enjoying the real riches one has and that by a simple act of forgiveness we would possess the power to enjoy every living moment of our life.

Remember: What power can poverty have over a home where loving hearts are beating with a consciousness of untold riches of the head and heart? Orison Swett Marden

Try this:

  1. Have a look at this following PPT that brings about the irony of our times Lifes_philosophy
  2.  From the above PPT can you list out 3 riches and 3 powers that you posses? Also jot down 3 riches you would like to have and 3 powers that you would love to be blessed with.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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

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