Tag: Thinking

We see the world as we are

We see the world as we are

Often we are blissfully ignorant of our own lopsided, one-dimensional and / or biased view of happenings around us. This is often the result of our inability to see things from a broader perspective or because we jump to conclusions quickly. Perhaps our inability to listen to others compounds the problem too. The net result however is that we end  up being ill informed, believe partial truths and arrive at erroneous conclusions that can have detrimental consequences for us.

The following suggestions can help each of us have a holistic view of the world around us.

Be aware of our personal bias. –  Our assumptions largely influenced by our personal biases often result in us seeing things from a very narrow perspective and erroneously believing that to be the only right thing. Our bias also influences us overlook red flags, ignore warning signs, makes us dogmatic and we are prone to seeing things the way we want it to be. Past personal experiences are a key reason why we are either overly risk averse or blissfully foolhardy rather than being pragmatic. E.g. Pushing kids to choose a stream of study that is time tested like engineering / commerce etc. whereas they have many off beats paths to tread on.

Accept the reality that there could be another point of view – As we are largely influenced by logical thinking, we get bogged down in our thinking and ignore views that do not fit into our frame of thinking. Negotiations often get impacted when parties to the negotiation are dogmatic that there is only way to see things and that is their personal viewpoint only. E.g. accepting that the world is round is tough initially because as far as our eye can see, the world is flat.

Be prepared to be corrected – Our ego gets hurt when someone points out our errors. Yet, mistakes happen all the time and it is in our interest to be aware of our mistakes and correct it.  However, very often we try to justify ourselves, defend our view point and pick on others faults instead of listening with an open mind. Our erroneous thinking when corrected actually gives us an advantage; for now we are on the right track. However, to get on to the right track we must be prepared to be corrected. E.g. during annual appraisal the superiors often share with us our areas for improvement. Our reaction to their observations holds the key to our progress thereafter.

See things from another’s perspective – Many times we are so obsessed with our own thoughts, ideas and views that we wade into a conversation or discussion wanting to inflict our opinions on all. At times we are so passionately convinced about our opinions that we neither pay attention to others nor do we respect a differing view point even if we grudgingly admit it has some merit. This also creates unpleasantness when differences crop up and we remain obstinate, unrelenting and dogmatic. E.g.  Our fanatical obsession with our personal food/ fashion/ political preferences etc.

Be ready to learn and change. – The speed of change often overtakes us and yet we are unwilling to adapt to the change. Technological changes are a classic case in point. Either because we technologically challenged or because we are old fashioned, we are often reluctant to adapt to the changes. At times we find it embarrassing to have to be taught by young people, while other times we find it tough to cope with the nuances of the learning. We rationalize that the good old days were better to continue the status quo. E.g. adapting to online banking and similar commercial transactions/ using varied apps

Try these:          

  1. Ask youngsters what are the latest apps and choose two apps that you think will be very useful for you. Use it regularly and decide if it is useful for you.
  2. Outline three changes around you, that you never anticipated/ imagined 5 years ago.
  3. What are your three cherished ideas/ views with which the following people differ completely?
  • Your children or friends or colleagues
  • Your siblings or cousins of a similar age group

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

First things first

First things first

In life there are times when we know what must be done to rectify a situation but either our ego or the fear of retribution or the anxiety of embarrassment hold us back. Yet, on hindsight, we do realize that the benefits of being first to rectify the situation far outweigh the short term concerns that prevent us from doing what is right. Three of the most classic cases of us suffering more for our procrastination in not taking the right step are as under:

Apologizing – The first to apologize is the bravest –  Our fear of retribution or occasionally our ego  will often over ride our sense of justice and we would often delay offering an apology for a mistake we have made or an injustice (albeit mistakenly ) committed. Yet the moment you decide that an apology is warranted and that too quickly, if you can gather the courage to apologize by  stifling the fear and/ or ego, you will realize that it is the bravest decision that you would have taken. Often it is also a very emotionally fulfilling decision because you would otherwise have to carry the guilt around. Mistakes happen to the best of us; however it is the bravest who can quickly apologize and seek forgiveness for the mistake.

Forgiving – The first to forgive is the strongest. – Our petty mindedness would trigger our ego and forgiving a mistake and accepting an apology would become a very difficult proposition. Unnecessarily we believe that by forgiving we are lowering our prestige or letting another go scot-free. The truth is that it takes a lot of courage to pardon someone who has knowingly or unknowingly hurt or troubled us. If we take an eye for an eye approach we would be carrying a burden of acting differently from what we really are. Instead by forgiving one who seeks forgiveness we would have displayed our moral courage and large heart. Forgiveness is a display of good character, sound values and the courage to do the right thing.

Forgetting – The first to forget is the happiest – If one nurtures a grudge, holds a past hurt to fuel fire to take revenge or allow ourselves to be consumed by rage and anger, it takes a toll on our mental peace, physical health and destroys our personal tranquility. For the hurt you feel, the disappointments you face because of others, the bad times that have overwhelmed you and the nagging need to get even with others, only results in you carrying an unseen burden within. Let go of that burden by forgetting the torments, the tormentors and the past and your heart, mind and body would feel lighter, less burdensome and certainly more relaxed. You will be a man with no worries; the person who is happiest.

Try these:           

  • Think of the time when you apologized for a mistake and you were not forgiven. What could be the reason for the other person not willing to forgive you?
  • What is the hurt/ anger/ guilt that you are still carrying around? Why is it that you are not able to forget the incident or forgive the person who hurt you?
  • If at all you have any painful memories of the past, how have you coped with it? Have you tried forgiving and / or forgetting it or the perpetrators if any ?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

You are a born chooser

You are a born chooser

At this point that you are reading, you have chosen to read. The moment you stop reading, you have chosen not to read. The great thing about life is that life allows you to choose no matter who you are, whatever your background and however insignificant you may think you are. It is our choices that determines our progress not fate or luck or destiny. We choose our happiness, we choose our friends, we choose how to relate to others, we choose our attitude. Being a winner or a loser; a success or a failure; a leader or a follower; are all the outcome of our choices.

The question that we ask then is ‘How do we ensure we make the right choices?

Be independent – don’t be forced or coerced into selecting what others want. Having an independent mind, self belief and confidence are prime requisites to make decent choices. Never let others decide for you no matter who they are; they could be parents, siblings, elders, bosses, friends, well wishers for none of them can take responsibility for your choices. They can share their views, raise their concerns, introduce you to a different way of thinking and it would be wise to consider their suggestions but the final choice must be made by you without them forcing or pressurizing you in any way.

Analyze before you choose – weigh the pros and cons. Ideally your choices must never be based on snap decision except when it is an emergency. In all other cases, study, analyze, think, mull over, compare, contrast, weigh the options before you finally make the choice. Be careful not to fall into the trap of paralysis by analysis; which is nothing but indecisiveness.

Be decisive – don’t oscillate once you have chosen – A common problem faced by many is that after making a choice they have second thoughts. They then oscillate between the choice made and the alternatives thereby disturbing their peace of mind as also confusing those around. A few choices will go wrong for a variety of reasons but the fear of going wrong should not limit you from not choosing. Remember that not choosing and sitting on the fence can also have consequences and more importantly it is also a choice you have made albeit passively.

Review your choice – change it if you come up with strong reasons to change – There are times when new information or unexpected changes require you to review your choices. Do not be adamant and hold tight to your wrong choice. Reviewing and changing your choice for valid reasons is an important choice to be made. When required do not shy away from changing your choice.

Be prepared to pay a price for your choice – your choice always comes at a cost – For every choice you make you have to pay a price. Just as there are no free lunches in this world there are no choices that have no repercussions. Keep in mind that the price you pay is worth it for the benefits of your choice far outweigh the price you pay, which is the reason you made the choice.

Never regret – nor apologize – stand by your conviction – If you take responsibility for your choices, you will never regret nor apologize nor have self doubts. A choice that goes wrong simply means that you were inadequate in determining the right choice. It could also indicate poor preparation, lack of understanding, an obstinate refusal to pay the price for the choice or it could be simply that the goal posts changed unexpectedly. Believe in yourself and your choices.

Try these:           

  1. List out the last three choices that went wrong for you. Analyze the reasons for the choices going wrong.
  2. What would influence your choices in the following cases:
  • Taking up or refusing an opportunity to be posted abroad
  • Betting on the winner in a sports tournament
  • Participating in a dare
  • Moving out of your comfort zone
  • Standing guarantee or refusing to offer a guarantee for a loan taken by a friend

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Don’t Quit but ideally go ahead and DO IT

Don’t Quit but ideally go ahead and DO IT

In a fast paced materialistic world, quick success is what the expectation norm is. Unfortunately this also comes with a downside that people give up too fast when they do not attain what they seek in the short time frames they set for themselves. Society in general, the family unit and the community in particular are equally to blame for pushing people to achieve unrealistic expectations. Higher exam scores, high paying jobs, amassing wealth etc. have become the yardstick to judge success. Gone into the background are qualities like hard work, honest ways, morals and etiquette’s. Perhaps this explains the rising suicides, the increase in psychological/ neurotic illness, spate of violence and rampant intolerance reflected in incidence of road rage, robberies, cyber crimes and off late trolling. The average conscientious citizen then is under tremendous pressure to perform or quit. It takes tremendous courage, will power and self respect to follow ones dreams, passion, goals and to express ones thoughts freely, in the face of constant scrutiny, criticism and unrealistic expectations from others.

I am sharing an Acronym that should be a good guide to help you overcome the feeling of quitting and instead of simply saying a passive Don’t Quit and keep it for another time, become proactive and go on and DO IT  :

Develop – The focus is on finding ways and means to work and bring into fructification various dreams, aspirations, goals that you have set for yourself. Do not let criticism, negativity or failures hamper you from pursuing your ultimate aim. Developing your mind, spirit and work is essential for you to make progress however slow in the right direction. The task may seem ominous, it may begin to sprout doubts in your mind but as long as you plant the seeds of self belief, exude passion and are prepared to roll up your sleeves and work you will develop in body, mind and soul.

Opinions – Form your own opinions and also seek the opinion of those who matter. Consult elders, experts, mentors and those in your circle of positive influence. Each of them will be able to contribute even if it is by way of constructive criticism or pragmatic wisdom or by simple encouragement. Remember they have your welfare in mind. However, also remember that they may not be able to see your vision or feel your passion and so they could be conservative in their thinking and opinions. Ultimately you have to assimilate and then decide the course of action or the corrective course of action to be taken. Focus on Doing it.

Ideas  – You mind might be spinning with ideas. You see opportunity in various forms. At the same time you could also be seeing problems in every opportunity. Remember that the problems are there to make you grounded and realistic but not put to make you pessimistic and faint hearted. At times some ideas seem to be exceptional and you are just itching to get it going. All ideas need to be vetted thoroughly and mulled over and planned. Only then can you begin. Follow the process and Do It.

Thoughts – The crux of success lies in your ability to think positively. Your thoughts must be focused on achieving your plans and goals. Your thoughts must be on finding solutions, overcoming obstacles and managing constraints. This will enable you to come up with alternatives, bring about clarity on how to proceed further and will also reinforce your belief in your plans. Never let the mind falter when you face a crisis. Instead, use the power of you mind it to think differently, to be innovative and to be goal focused. Solutions will present itself . All you need to do then is DO IT.

 Try these:

What are the three things you have kept on hold and not attempted yet. How about drawing up an action plan to DO IT?  Then instead of just saying Don’t Quit but I shall keep it on the back burner now say DO IT and get cracking.

How about attempting something new that you never ever thought of doing?  Maybe learn some new skill or be a wee bit more adventurous with your choice of picnics/ parties / get together. Go on ensure that you DO IT differently the very next opportunity that comes.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

If it excites and scares you…

If it excites and scares you…

Like many, I am full of ideas. I get excited at the thought of executing some of my ideas but most times I avoid attempting anything because I am scared that I may fail. When I travel to new destinations I am captivated by the sights be it the mountains, the rivers, the sea or simply the ambiance of the fun, food and locale. Again I am tempted to indulge but often hold back for I am afraid of something going wrong. Far too often we attempt something different because we are left with no choice. It is also possible that we discovered that there is something new, invigorating and exciting about the new things we attempted. The question we need to answer then is ‘ why don’t I proactively try out something new, different, exciting and scary?’

We are lazy – The easiest thing to generate is ideas. The tough part is executing them. So we lie back and think of various possibilities, scenarios, opportunities. However, if we want to make something out of those ideas we need to get up and work towards it. Sheer laziness, casualness and lethargy on our part makes us dreamers not doers. Laziness manifests itself in the most common way called procrastination.  If one can stop making excuses for not doing something one is passionate about, then one can strive and realize one’s passion and dreams.

We create self doubts – One key reason for procrastination is the self doubts we create in our minds. We question our abilities, we see the challenge as overwhelming, we try to find short cuts rather than hit the road running, we try to plug every loop hole that we imagine in our plans etc. Notice that each of these is self created and a convenient way to fool our mind into thinking that we are being prudent, careful and thorough in our approach. Every doubt is just a self created hurdle that delays our start and often leads to inaction.

We are risk averse – An extreme case of self doubt is rationalizing is that we are risk averse. Risk exists every moment of our life. The degree of risk could vary but the reality is that it exists. Yet we place a premium on certain types of risks which is logical because some risks are higher when the nature of the business on hand itself is fraught with risks. The risk trouble doubles when we imagine all sorts of risks plaguing us especially when one is kickstarting something new. It is technically impossible to over all our bases and yet that is precisely what we try to do when we have to plunge into a new activity. The risk of failure is perhaps the biggest risk we fear.

We fear failure – Among the risks we fear, the fear of failure is what haunts us. A simple example is the numerous people who do not attempt public speaking simply because of their fear of failing. Failure they say is the stepping stone to success but apparently no one wants to use stepping stones. Everyone was to jet set to success and that is technically a near impossibility. Success is earned, learned and sustained over time. Many a time failure is nothing but our inability to keep going and giving up on the cusp of redemption. Occasionally failure is our short sightedness in not responding to change but most times failure is imagination taking us on a ride to nowhere.

We limit ourselves by limiting our thinking. – Perhaps the biggest stumbling block to progress for many, is our self limiting thinking. We begin to aim high and then lower the barrel ending up shooting ourselves in the foot. We question our abilities, show poor trust in our judgment, do not dare to leap frog and keep looking over our shoulder instead of seeing the distant horizons. There are opportunities aplenty, there are challenges that we can overcome easily, there is life beyond the ordinary if only we dare to dream big, think differently and  act decisively.

It is time to TRY what EXCITES you and SCARES you… NOW

Try these:

If you could change your profession or life list out the three alternatives you are most passionate about. How about doing yourself a favor and working on pursuing one of the passions within the next one year.

If you won a million rupees in the lottery what will you do with it? Outline a plan. Share it with a friend and see his/ her reactions ( do not tell them that it is an imaginary exercise you are attempting).

List out the three craziest things you have done in life so far. What was the outcome? What lessons did you learn from it?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Your thoughts define you

34- 26 Sept17-Your thoughts define you

You are defined by your thoughts. Your thoughts in turn are influenced by your attitude. Each of us has a different set of upbringing, education and experiences. The environment in which we grew up could have instilled in us the values we hold dear, the fears and hopes we carry within and helps us visualize opportunities and widens our horizons. All these factors contribute to the type of attitude we embrace which in turn fortifies us to meet the challenges of life and grasp the opportunities that come our way. We can take credit for the successes we attain and by the same yardstick take responsibility for not realizing our full potential. Far too often, we limit ourselves because we limit our thinking. Either we fear the worst or we doubt our own abilities.

To explore our potential and to leverage it one needs to focus on the following:

Clean up the cobwebs in the mind – Our mind is cluttered with thoughts that largely center around self preservation, safety, risk avoidance and following the set path. Occasionally we indulge in the luxury of visualizing something different, more outlandish, something that seems to be closer to our heart. Those who dare to explore that whole heartedly often do succeed because they have clarity and focus on what to do rather than what to avoid. Do not let the mind be filled with confusion, anxiety and be overwhelmed. Instead separate and segregate our numerous thoughts and arrange them in an orderly manner so that one begins to get clarity.

Rearrange the muddled up plans in the mind – Many of us suffer from wanting to do too many things. As a result we set ourselves multiple goals but lack the personal bandwidth to manage all the goals. We need to prioritize our goals and map out the specific action to be taken for each goal. This will help one focus better and avoid negative inputs like fear, depression and worry sabotaging our efforts.

Stop thinking and begin to act on our thoughts – Perhaps the one thing almost all of us are guilty of, is thinking too much and not taking enough decisive action. If we let our mind imagine the worst case scenario and blow it out of proportion then we will spend more time trying to ring fence the imaginary problems. Consequentially we delay taking action thereby derailing the original plans. While planning is essential one must put the plans in action if one has to make tangible progress. So keep at bay the self doubt, the feeling of inadequacy and the anxiousness and apprehensions and replace it with confidence, hope and faith in your abilities.

Review and caliber our action as required – Even the best laid plans may not factor in circumstances beyond our control or imagination. Reviewing the progress of plans and recalibrating the action required is critical to getting the project implemented. If we do not pause to review there is every possibility that you continue to progress in the wrong direction or that we take a circuitous route that is time consuming and costly. Never hesitate to admit you made a mistake or that you need to be realistic and cut your losses. Do not become dogmatic or egoistic lest they cloud your judgment. Try and be open to feedback, be open to correction and be ready to change.

Try these

  1. List out some goals that you have set for yourself but which have not yet taken off. Identify the reasons for the lack of progress on your part.
  2. Identify two initiatives that you started off earnestly but which failed/ disappointed you. Can you put your finger on the specific mistakes you made which you did not correct on time and led to the failure/ disappointment?
  3. Write down the 3 negative emotions you are guilty of harboring in your mind far too often. Now ask a few family members, friends and colleagues to share the one negative quality you display the most. Their responses could be an eye opener for you.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Never complain, never explain

18- 18 May 17- Never explain never complainThe moment things do not go as per our plan or wishes, the tendency is to complain about something or the other that we believe, derailed our plans. Similarly, no sooner we are criticized, before we even ingest the criticisms, we are quick off the blocks with our explanations and excuses. To maintain our individuality, to become independent in thought, word and deed it is essential that we act as per our convictions and take responsibility for the consequences of our action. No matter what the outcome, there is no need to complain or explain; for it is the outcome of a responsible action.

To ensure one takes a good independent decision follow these rules:

Act responsibly: This is tougher than it looks because sometimes temptations, the need to act macho, the ego to prove something, the urge to defy others etc. overtakes our rationality and we act emotionally thereby opening up the risk of doing things that we may regret later. Responsible behavior is being fully aware of the consequences and being more rational and less emotional. You will never have to justify your action for you took it responsibly.

Take responsibility: There are times when you as a member of a team have to stand by your team and your leader even if you have a dissenting view about the action taken. Similarly as a leader there are times that you have to take harsh and unpleasant decisions which the majority may not favor. These are the times you take responsibility without fear or favor.

Learn from the feedback: There is always scope for improvement. Hence it is important that even if you don’t have to explain or never opt to complain, listen carefully to the criticism, the suggestions, the alternatives and the explanations given by others. Look also for examples of others; those who succeed, those who fail, those who did not act and those who sat on the fence. Everyone is offering free lessons to learn from; keep learning!

Think before you act: You should seek out the best from books, people, experiences and thought. However the decision has to be taken by you after applying your mind to the action you are going to trigger. Be aware of the velocity your action will trigger, the reactions it will generate and the goal it is set to achieve. When you are sure that there is balance between these and that it is time to be decisive act with confidence and faith. There is nothing you will regret ever.

Try these:

  • Which was the best decision that you took in your life?
  • What is the one mistake you still regret?
  • What was the stupidest decision you took under pressure from others?
  • What was the one situation you had to make up an excuse to get out of trouble?

 Did you face the following situations and how did you deal with it?

  • Your parents asking you to justify your poor scores in exams
  • Your coach benching you for a poor performance
  • Your friend / partner / spouse constantly complaining about a certain behavioral trait of yours

 List out your complains against the following people

  • Your parents / siblings
  • Your colleagues/ bosses
  • Your three best friends
  • Your neighbor
  • The last three co-passengers who disappointed you

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Giving meaning to your life.

30-the-meaning-of-lifeAt some point in time, if not most of the time, each of us grapples with the question ‘What is the meaning of my life?’ Our problem is often the result of our inability to cope with either abundance of riches, ideas, options or because all these are in terrible short supply in our life.  Some of us struggle with the chaos in our life brought about by our fear of the future, the ghost of the past and the challenges of the present. Each of us also suffer, in varying degrees, from the seven deadly vices of sloth, gluttony, pride, envy, wrath, lust and greed which makes our life miserable and reignites the question ‘What is the meaning of our life?

The answer to this philosophical question actually lies in answering another more meaningful question ‘How do I give meaning to my life?’  The key word is the emphasis on the word MY LIFE! Yes I am sure my of existing life; the previous life is immaterial now and the afterlife, if such a thing exists, is a long way away. Once you decide that you and only you can lead your life, giving meaning to it becomes relatively simple. You choose, you live, you make life happen!

To give meaning to your life focus on the following:

Your thoughts – Everything you do starts in your mind. You need to train your mind to think with purpose, think rationally, be imaginative and to think positive. Since our thoughts determine our words and actions, pay attention to those triggers that make us emotional, get us worked up, make us irrational and those that plant a seed of doubt in our mind. Once you become aware of such negative thoughts, it becomes possible albeit difficult to rein in such thoughts and counter them with more positive and energizing thoughts. Every day will bring with it, its share of joys, concerns, opportunities and challenges. We often tend to discount or ignore the joys and opportunities and instead focus on the concerns and challenges that we face. Slowly our mind begins to wither away since it is now trained only to look out for trouble. Instead, if you count your blessings each day, the wonders that you have been gifted with and the chances that you get to move ahead in life all other troubles will seem to be insignificant in comparison. Start each day with a grateful heart; end each day with thanks for another good day. Whatever happens in between will then be something you can cope with, for by overcoming it is what makes your day, something to cherish and feel happy about.

Your words – Your thoughts have a large influence in how your thoughts, feelings and emotions are articulated and expressed. If you see challenges as opportunities to prove your mettle, you will look forward to it and express yourself with confidence, eagerness and excitement. On the other hand if you view it as an unavoidable task, you will start expressing your doubts, your concerns, find excuses for failure that you anticipate. Ask yourself what type of person you would like to deal with. The tone, tenor, style and choice of words would also reflect your mindset and attitude towards a task and your belief system. Be aware that sarcasm, insinuations, blame game and negativity in your communication often indicate your insecurity, your weakness and your inability to cope with stress. Practice the art of expressing yourself in a positive way; consider the recipient of your communication as a partner in your work, an ally who wants you to succeed and someone who believes in your abilities. The same feelings will percolate into your mindset and before long you would succeed in seeing positive life changing meaning in your daily life.

Your deeds – It is said that the ‘proof of the pudding is in the eating’. Ultimately your thoughts and words must be reflected in the actions you perform. Giving platitudes and sermons is relatively easy; traversing that path is definitely much more difficult. A simple act of listening carefully could sometimes be extremely difficult because you have strong negative emotions about the other party and / or the situation. Your deeds are not merely what you do, but how you do it. Do you bang the door when you leaving your bosses cabin after a stormy meeting? Do you do an unpleasant task with grace? How do you deal with a cranky elder at home? Do you constantly nag your spouse and/ or children? Can you maintain a cheerful countenance even during a very stressful situation? Remember that Actions speak louder than words!

Try these:

  1. Volunteer to baby sit a child who is between the ages of 3-5. If the child is hyperactive or challenged, you would learn a lot more from the experience about your own temperament, patience, creativity, attitude and self belief.
  2. Spend one evening every month in an orphanage / old age home / hospice / home for the challenged. What feelings did you experience? Ask yourself what can you do on your own to make life more comfortable there.
  3. List out the names of 5 people with whom you have difficulty in getting along. Now choose one of them and make a determined effort to be genuinely nice to them for an extended period of time. Did it bring about a positive change in you and the other person? Do you think you were being unfair to judge the other person wrongly? Do you think you can try this experiment with other people on your list?
  4. Make a list of all the negative words / phrases / excuses / tone / foul language that you often resort to, especially when annoyed/ irritated / confused/ frustrated. Can you make a determined effort to eliminate these and substitute them with some positive reinforcements?  Can you feel a change in yourself after adopting a positive approach?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Five things to quit

23- Five things to quitOften people wonder what they need to do to set things right in their life. Perhaps each of us is guilty of indulging in one or more of the following, as a result of which we fail to realize our full potential.

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

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

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

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

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

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

Try these:

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

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

The control challenge

21- The control challengeOne of the major reasons we are stressed is because we are unable to keep our emotions in check when faced with a dilemma or confusion or problem. We then get overwhelmed, fearful and react impulsively.  Our reactions are often in anger, frustration and despondency. Rational behavior takes a back seat, the challenge of the moment looks ominous and damage control is our instinctive allay which then becomes the focus of our attention. If ever one who faced a crisis behaved in this manner, there would be very few who survived disasters. If every researcher adopted the same attitude there would be very few discoveries. Every major war is testimony to the resilience of the vanquished and destroyed, to rebuild and grow despite the severity of their ruins physically, financially and mentally. So what is it that makes the human race change, progress and succeed despite the upheavals, the disasters and the disruptions that seem to perennially confront them?

The answer lies in how one responds. The key is not to react but to respond. The difference between the two is in how you control your attitude, your thinking and your actions.

Attitude: Do we visualize a problem as a disaster or as challenge to be overcome. It is our attitude that will determine our perception of the challenge on hand. Those who are fearful, those just wanting to plod forward and those who are faint hearted would look at obstacles as useless, irritating and insurmountable. They would then settle for compromise solutions rather than a resolution of the problem. On the other hand those having supreme confidence in their own abilities, those who seek long term solutions and those willing to take on a challenge would approach every problem with a ‘ seek the hidden solution’ attitude. They too would get irritated at times, would feel frustrated momentarily, be tempted to give up. However, they resolve to effectively  tackle the challenge even if it takes time, even if they have seek help from others and even if the world around belittles and criticizes their efforts. They have the positive can do – will do attitude.

Thinking : Our attitude will determine how we approach a situation. Those who are positive and determined to find solutions would rein in their negative emotions of fear, anger, disappointment and frustration. Instead they would bring into play their strengths, realign their thinking to seek solutions and refocus their attention on varied possibilities in order to overcome the challenge on hand. The will not hesitate to seek the expertise of others; they would be keen observers and listeners for they are sure there exists a solution that they just need to discover. They do not let the problem slip from their mind but they keep mulling over it to let the subconscious work on it. Their thoughts are focused on responding to the challenge rationally, logically and decisively

Action: There are times when quick action holds the key and there is little time to elaborately think and plan. Emergencies are classical examples be it a natural disaster, a fire, an accident or  even events like missing a flight or losing your mobile/ wallet. Even in such situations, the action must not be purely impulsive (it will be largely  impulsive when your life itself is threatened like if you are in a building that is on fire, since self preservation is a natural instinctive mechanism for survival) but taken with a calm and cool head. Controlling panic whilst seeking a solution would provide more possibilities. The action must be taken decisively and not tentatively; this is possible when the action plan is based in clear headed thinking and with full awareness of the consequences. The action must be to arrive at a solution with minimum damage.

Try these:

  1. Pick up a news paper and attempt to solve the crosswords or similar puzzles that appear in it. Your attitude, thinking and action would be reflected in how you respond to this challenge.
  2. List out three instances when you panicked. What was the final outcome of those situations? What role did you play in each of the given situations?
  3. Of the three key points listed above which of them is your primary problem.
  • Attitude – By nature are you and optimist or a pessimist
  • Thinking – Can you think both logically and creatively or do you prefer to follow instructions?
  • Action – Are you a self starter or do you like to act as instructed.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com