Tag: Trust

Self belief unlocks many locks

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

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

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

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

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

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

Try this:

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

 

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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

Friendship

When it hurts to look back, and you’re scared to look ahead, you can look beside you and your best friend will be there.

Many of our actions today are subconsciously affected by our past experiences which in turn also have a major bearing on our attitudes, behavior, thought process and decision making and that indirectly has a bearing on our future too. For the overwhelming majority it is the hurt, the humiliation, the failures, the taunts and similar negative experiences that remain deeply ingrained in our psyche and percolate into our thinking and our action which are often defensive or aggressive. Looking back at the past therefore hurts terribly. Looking ahead seems and equally frightening prospect and that is when one really longs for someone to be right besides you to support and encourage you, help calm down your anxieties, point the right way ahead and accompanying you when are fearful and scared. While family would often offer all this it is only one’s best friend who will really understand you and accept you the way you are. It is the best friend to whom you can open up freely, fight with remorselessly, shout and scream at to let out our frustrations and confidently turn to when there is no one left to lend you an ear and a shoulder to lean on and cry upon.

Most times our best friends are school mates/ college buddies or neighbors but we can also get fortunate in meeting some new people who providentially cross our path and we become soul mates. Similarly most times the best friends are of the same sex and age group but some people get exceptionally lucky and discover their best friend in someone much older or younger and someone of the opposite sex too.  What is important to note is that TRUST holds the key to friendships, OPENNESS crowns the interactions and TRANSPERENCY holds the mirror to show up the warts and moles and ACCEPTANCE cements the relationship. Each of these elements needs to be present for a friendship to develop into a relationship of BEST FRIENDS. More importantly we need to nurture and treasure these critical components that make us fortunate to have BEST FRIENDS.

Without trust no relationship can develop.  For friendships to develop there must be implicit trust. This means we not only believe the person but are willing to overlook his / her transgressions, forgive their mistakes and place your faith and possibly your life in their care. One can do this when one has to know the person intimately and accept the person as he/she is. Interestingly even if the person has breached your faith you will continue to give the benefit of doubt and give them another chance to both redeem themselves and also reaffirm their trust. Openness relates to our willingness to share and disclose our personal,  private and privileged information partly to unburden but mainly to get a an honest  feedback and unbiased suggestions from the friend. This is risky business because we may divulge information that could be misused or misunderstood too. We may even open up a Pandora’s box that could have potentially devastating effects on relationships and friendships too. It is by being open that we crown the relationship and turn friends into best friends.

In being transparent one does not hold back one’s feelings of hurt and disappointment in our relationship with our friend. It also implies that one would not hesitate to call a spade a spade and would show courage of conviction in firmly articulating a view resented by a friend. As individuals each one has a different thought process and view and even between friends there could be vastly divergent views and equally controversial positions being taken up on matters. Transparency ensures that one is brave, bold and business like in openly articulating feeling and thoughts. The high point of the blossoming of a relationship between best friends is the unconditional acceptance of each other.  As individuals we may have radically opposing views and philosophies. Yet when one is willing to give space to the other to follow his heart and yet accept that person unconditionally that is when one discovers ones best friend amongst a multitude of friends.  Even when there are serious differences, perhaps even disparaging comments and remarks made in anger but when the dust settles and the individuals can look eye to eye and embrace each other without rancor or disapproval that is when one knows that your best friend is there by you ALWAYS.

Remember: “Sometimes you put walls up not to keep people out, but to see who cares enough to break them down.

Try this:

  1. Look back and ask yourself if you had a best friend in school, in college and in your work place. Do you still remain good friends? If not why do you think the friendship did not sustain. If it sustains till date can you identify one reason why you have been able to cement your relationship so well.
  2. Think of your best friend and honestly answer if you know the following about him/ her
  • His /her worst fears
  • His /her real passion
  • His/ her worst moment or experience
  • His / her most annoying quality

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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

Valuing friendships

A loyal friend laughs at your jokes when they’re not so good, and sympathizes with your problems when they’re not so bad. Arnold H. Glasow

It is tough to find good friends not because they are not made anymore, but because the slightest of misunderstandings can kill a beautiful friendship. People today tend to be more sensitive, have greater expectations from friends and are quick to pull the plug from a potentially lifelong friendship because they get impatient, take offense easily and often let their ego overrule their judgment. On the other hand if one has the ability to be non judgmental and love a friend unconditionally, overlook his/ her faults nonchalantly and be able to put with their idiosyncrasies be it their silly jokes or their oversensitive outbursts then the fruits of those friendship never go stale and they will make our life heavenly.

Friendships blossom on compatibility, affection and trust. Each of these parameters poses a challenge and it also provides the platform for friendships to begin, grow and blossom. Most people view compatibility to mean that good friendship s can be formed only by people in near similar age groups. This is largely true because many friendships are formed during school and college days and invariably all the friends are in a similar age bracket. However the critical factor in compatibility is the meeting of minds; the ability to find common ground, the possibility of moving ahead hand in hand and the insight to reconcile differences if any.  Many a friendship has perished when the apparent initial compatibility began crumbling under the weight of impossible expectations and unreasonable demands.

While compatibility can be there between people as it is possible with two people who share a common interest or hobby, it does not necessarily mean that they have any affection for each other. Affection begins with understanding and then proceeds to the next step of liking and culminates in being completely at ease in each other’s company. Many a time they understand each other so well that they are able to instinctively anticipate each other’s emotions and feelings be it one of elation or sorrow. Trust is what cements a friendship. Trust is all about having implicit faith in one another being able to see only the good in the friend, being able to overlook the idiosyncrasies and quirks of the friend and being able to stand up for the friend through thick and thin. Trust will ensure that friends are open in their communications, respect each other’s individuality and be magnanimous in pardoning friends faults. A true friend will never let a good relationship die because of lack of trust.

The challenge to maintaining friendship is in ensuring that all the three pillars of friendship remain strong and upright always. Communication is a critical ingredient in the reinforcing the bonds of friendship. Humor is another factor that goes a long way in cheering up friendships. Above all faith in one another will eliminate misunderstandings, suppress ego’s and ignite the candle of friendship on the rare occasions that the flame gets blown away. The beauty of true friendship lies in its nebulous property to endure the limitations posed by time, space, silence, indifference and separation.

Remember: “To the world you may be just one person, but to one person you may be the world.”  Brandi Snyder

Try this:

  1. Pause and look back at a close friendship which has either died out or that has end on a bitter note. Can you make the effort to forgive and forget and begin again by reaching out to that close friend and making him/ her know that you still value their friendship?  If you are rebuffed do not take it personally but try to ignore the hurt and rather cherish the good old days.
  2. Some friendships become too demanding and it is possible that we are guilty of having too many expectations from a friend which ultimately snapped the friendship. Some friendships may have withered away for lack of effective interaction and communications.  If you feel that you are guilty of either of these two strikes that robbed you of a very good friendship, put your ego behind and rekindle the friendship. You may discover that the new bond is stronger than ever before.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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

True friends…

The best mirror is an old friend. Anon

Before you read any further, get up go to the mirror and have a good look at yourself. Did you notice the creases on your forehead, the tiny pimple on your face, the beginning of baggy eyes or perhaps you noticed at least one grey hair. If you didn’t see any of these, then you need to look again or improve the lighting or change your mirror. The beauty of a mirror is not in what it reveals but in honestly displaying back warts, moles, pimples and all without fear or favor. Unfortunately a mirror cannot reflect the person in you; your attitudes, your inner feelings, the fears, hopes, desires that permeate your thoughts. An old friend is thus your best mirror who helps you see yourself from the inside.

An old friend is one who knows us intimately and more importantly someone who knows us for a long time. When we appreciate that friendship is all about a good understanding, a close intimacy and utmost trust we realize that over the many years we have shared most of our innermost feelings with our friends. They know how we behave, react, respond and express ourselves in varied situations and circumstances. It is also possible that they have in subtle and not so subtle ways pointed out what they felt were undesirable qualities, traits, behavioral tendencies in us. Depending on our moods, our interpretations of those criticisms and our closeness to our friends, we could have partially acknowledged some criticism, defended most and ignored what didn’t suit us. In extreme cases we could have attributed motives to our friends and perhaps made our friendship more circumspect and even unfortunately in rare cases broken a friendship.

As a friend to others, we too have a similar obligation to our friends. There is risk in being too upfront and forthright and so we need to be more tactful, time our feedback appropriately and be unbiased and fair. However many a time we believe that criticism will not be taken in the right spirit and so most times our observations and criticism of others are shared with other close friends while the protagonist remains blissfully unaware and incapable of taking any proactive steps. It is just as important for us to encourage our friends and point out their strengths and abilities. There are many times when a wavering friend on the verge of taking a major personal or professional decision requires a friend’s nudge by way of support to take the plunge. Many a time as a friend our responsibility is to stand by a friend when he/ she is going through a personal crisis even if it was self inflicted or a result of foolhardiness on their part despite your warnings. Unlike a mirror which stoically reflects, a good friend must proactively empathize and sympathize making us one better than the heartless mirror.

Remember: “Self-revelation is a cruel process. The real picture, the real you never emerges. Looking for it is as bewildering as trying to know how you really look. Ten different mirrors show you ten different faces.” Shashi Deshpande

Try this:

  1. Name three faults in your best friend. Have you been able to tell your friend about these faults? If not what has held you back?  If you have told how has the friend reacted to it?
  2. What are the 3 criticism you have received from anyone, which hurt you the most? Were those criticisms justified? Did any feedback from a good friend hurt you? Have you severed ties with a good friend because of what he/ she said and you didn’t like it because it hurt you? Have you ever apologized and made up with your friend?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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

Keeping friendships alive

Friendship is like money, easier made than kept. Samuel Butler

Ever notice how our income barely seems to help us keep our expenses covered even if we are earning more and more each year. The reason for this is very simple; we really don’t pay attention to our money matters as much as we should. Now if we substitute the word money with the word friends, we notice that we have made so many friends but find it hard to really maintain the relationship. The reason is the same; our inability to take care of our friendships.

In today’s technology facilitated world, making friends across the globe is passé. Yet while we may see many of them online for example, either we do not converse with them or they are too busy. Over time we delete these contacts with no remorse. Technology allows us that liberty without any pangs of conscience but in real life, we rarely delete but we rarely connect either. When we look back at the close friendships we have made in school, college, our neighborhood, at work etc. we find that we are open to most people when making friends. However when we interact more closely we could be changing our opinion and then the friendship starts to fizzle.

To begin with any friendship to be called one needs to be developed and this is a time consuming process. There has to be some commonality of interests for a friendship to begin and flourish. More importantly the wave length of friends should match so that there is understanding, tolerance, mutual respect and a strong bonding. These are traits that are discovered slowly as one nurtures a friendship. There are three pillars of friendship Communication , Trust and Openness. All friendships are built up on this foundation and so it is important that one is not only aware of this but also makes an effort to strengthen each of these qualities in our interactions with friends.

Communication is of course a two way process and unless both parties interact and share thoughts ideas fears hopes expectations and very often discuss on mutually interested topics and also indulge in talking shop, the friendship will not really flower. Of course we must be careful that we are not too blunt or insensitive while communicating or else we would be making a very counter productive move. Trust is the soil in which the seeds of bonding are sown and it is here that friendships take roots and sprout into a life long bonding. We have to be careful that we never betray anyone’s rust in us for there is no second chance when trust is betrayed. Openness is the fertilizer that nourishes the friendships and ensures that the growth is healthy, robust and invaluable. Openness is tough because we expose ourselves and we hope that our open communication is accepted with out bias and the underlying trust is never shaken.

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

Try this:

  1. Take a fresh look at the names appearing in your friends list in your email contacts, chat lists, social networking sites etc. Are there some people who you should delete to make the list more manageable? Are there others who you realise have been unfairly ignored but need to be communicated with. Go ahead and do just that.
  2. Ask yourself if you prefer an email greeting or an old fashioned snail mail greeting card / letter. Make a list of people whom you feel will much appreciate a and written letter and personalized card. Ensure you write the note and get a card and if possible go and deliver it personally to such people. The recipients need not be friends of your age but could be teachers, friends of your parents or neighbours who have moved away.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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

The riches of friendship

They are rich who have true friends. Thomas Fuller

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

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

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

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

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

Try this:

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

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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

Trust begets trust

The only way to make a man trustworthy is to trust him. Henry L. Stimson

Human nature being what it is, we tend to have strong likes and dislikes largely based on our perceptions which in turn are deeply influenced by our biases and prejudices. One of the most  common bias pertains to assuming that someone who is shabbily dressed is poor and perhaps not to be completely trusted whereas  someone nattily dressed is rich an therefore trustworthy.  World over the quantum of white collared crimes is rapidly growing and yet using our quixotic logic, we tend to mistrust people who we are biased against. What we forget this old adage that ‘trust begets trust’.

As individuals we may have often resented our own parent’s inquisitiveness into our affairs which may have bordered on the cusp of insensitive distrust of our activities.  Our rational and oft repeated argument would be that we are mature and responsible and so we must be trusted to do the right thing at the right time. In fact if we are pressurized by the constant peering over our shoulder behavior, in frustration we would resort to some unruly behavior, bend some rules, express our annoyance more aggressively or simply revolted.  The human mind is conditioned to value its independence and responsibility which unfortunately is often overlooked by those in authority or power, be it parents, teachers, superiors or colleagues.

On the other hand, observe the behavior of people to whom we entrust responsibility and also express our confidence in. More often than not they exceed our expectations, simply because they do not want to let down our confidence in them. There would always be exceptions, but they are few and far and in between. Many of those who fail our trust have either foolish self centered interests or are simply incompetent. While the later can be excused and if possible given a second chance, those who deliberately fail us also need a second chance and perhaps closer supervision.  Trusting a person also offers the other person a chance to act independently and discover his/ her own abilities and potential. Even more important is the fact that by trusting a person you are giving the persona seal of our approval not just for his / her integrity but also for their skill, their competence and their resourcefulness.

How does one trust? It is never easy to overcome our personal bias and prejudices. So the first step is to be aware of our skewed thought process and possible irrational approach when we have to deal with people. Once we identify the people to who we need to entrust work, it is essential that w make sure that they have the ability and knowledge to be entrusted with the task. This is to be followed up with a conscious, well thought out plan of gaining the confidence of the others which often entails explaining our expectations of the other, reasons for our confidence in them and outlining the parameters which govern the relationship. Eg. If we employee a driver, it is prudent to check his credentials, then test his driving skills. Give them the brief and expectations and if possible make reference to any favorable recommendations received.  Avoid all temptations to do back seat driving but do pass on specific instructions that you would like him to follow. It is Bon Voyage then.

Remember: “The key is to get to know people and trust them to be who they are. Instead, we trust people to be who we want them to be- and when they’re not, we cry.”

Action Points:

  1. Read the well known parable of the tree talent from the Bible by clicking the following link. http://bible.org/seriespage/parable-talents-matthew-2514-30-luke-1912-28Notice that the master TRUSTS his servants and the first two servants in turn trust the master.; alas the third servant does not TRUST his master and so faces the consequences of his lack of trust.
  2. Ask yourself if you mistrust people because of your biases and if that is true identify those biases.  Do you attach too much importance to hearsay and as a result do not trust easily? Recollect at least 3 instances where you made an error in judgment about people you had to deal with.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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

The fewer the words…

The fewer the words, the better the prayer.  Martin Luther

Across the world, prayer is the common medium of reaching up to the divine and uniformly it is always verbose and repetitive. Part of this notion of prayer being verbose and repetitive could be attributed to the fact that when the concept of prayer emerged most people were illiterate and not confident that they could talk to the almighty. The priests then preferred to have common verbose prayers that could be easily memorized and repeated. The also tailored prayers for certain occasions, festivals, celebrations etc. so that the mood and essence of the occasion is addressed. Ever since prayer has become central to religion but more significantly has emerged as a means to express ourselves albeit in a most hackneyed and contrite way.

In reality prayer is a communication with the almighty and this means one has to be spontaneous, free and frank. Prayer has no rigid format and that is another salient feature of this form of communication; one can communicate as one adult to another or as a child to a parent or as a friend to a friend. Since communication is a two process, it implies that one has to listen to the response to our communication.  However this provides the biggest challenge for all our answers are heard only in the silence of our hearts. More often than not, our hearts are filled with anxiety, worries, hopes, expectations and so it is never silent nor attentive. As a result, while we seek to unburden or thank, we are never ever sure if our passionate pleas or entreats are ever heard or acknowledged. As a result, our rote prayers become more fervent, less personalized and often end up as a bargain with the almighty.

There is another aspect of prayer that is less understood and never emphasized. It is said that action speaks louder than words and this is applicable to prayer too. Most people find it hard to visualize action in the form of helping people, volunteering our time and efforts, taking some leadership roles in society etc. as being akin to prayer. In reality, prayer in the conventional form is relatively more passive, less action oriented and definitely more stereotype. If one were to roll up the sleeves and taken on some work that would benefit people at large that would be a more heartfelt prayer. Action needs more than just effort; it needs commitment of time, focused attention and is always result oriented. When you help others, there is sense of achievement a feeling of fulfillment and then the verbose prayers are almost always directed towards success of our activity and rarely self centered.

The best prayers are always those which focus on thankfulness, gratefulness and acknowledgment and appreciation. For such prayers we do not require too much verbosity and in addition it is more positive and humbling. When we volunteer and actively participate in the needs of society, when we take out time to devote to our specific project and when our commitment is unconditional and complete, there can never be a more powerful and devoted prayer.

Remember: “It is in vain to expect our prayers to be heard, if we do not strive as well as pray.”  Aesop quotes

Try this:

  1. List out 3 or more blessings for which you are always grateful to the almighty. If there was one more blessing you sought what would it be and why?
  2. Over the last 5 years, what were the practical things you did out of the way as a gesture of help and good will for your fellow men? Can you additionally choose a specific cause and commit yourself to it?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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

Creating hope

Hope is like a road in the country; there was never a road, but when many people walk on it, the road comes into existence.  Lin Yutang

It is when things seem out of control that one is forced to really explore other avenues and then pin hopes on the fresh ideas and initiatives. Unfortunately, very often we lack conviction in most of our fresh ideas and plod along half in the fear of failure and most times our fears come true. Hope begins when we are prepared to risk success and not succumb to fear. Hope is not a onetime exercise but a continuous determined and positive approach that is driven by conviction.

Hope is proverbial the light at the end of the tunnel. When you believe in it then you will traverse that distance even in the dark. While inspiration often gives us new avenues of hope, we have to make the effort to translate that hope into a concrete reality of success. The success of an underdog gets highlighted simply because it is a triumph of hope. It is possible that many a time we are dissuaded by well meaning people against pursuing our path. We are prone to succumb to such pressures but it is the hope that we will succeed that gets one going.

There are times when we mistake hope to be our savior. A compulsive gambler for example would always hope to hit the jackpot with the next game. A student who never studies and yet hopes to clear his / he exams is also under the same delusion. It is possible that because of a rare stroke of luck the gambler and the lazy student succeed. After that a mistaken self belief masquerades as hope and more often than not ruins the person. Hope is not blind belief. See hope as the unknown variable that when put in place completes the solution.

Hope is the kingpin of the business of life. If we didn’t have hope we would be utter failures for we would simply give up at the first signs of things going wrong. Often when we get no for an answer, it is hope that urges us on to attempt a second time or try a different approach. Hope is the guardian angel that watches over our endeavors, protects us from being demoralized and prods us on to the right path. Hope often tests our patience, questions our wisdom and occasional trips our progress. Look at all the numerous lists of things to be done that we have written over the years. Some have yellowed with age but the contents are intact without any major progress, others consigned to the dustbin without much ado and many a list re-written but with many unticked items simply ignored and unwritten in the new list.

Remember: “Hope is not a dream but a way of making dreams become reality.”

Try this:

  1. Visit the website of John Goddard by clicking the following link http://www.johngoddard.info/life_list.htm and notice how hope played a major part in his list of 127 things he wanted to achieve. Can you compile a similar list for yourself?
  2. Has it occurred to you that anyone who is challenged be it mentally, emotionally or physically  never view their life as hopeless. They have a reason to live and enjoy life to the fullest extent possible. So what is your excuse for not having enough hope to realize your potential and your dreams? Make a list of negative thoughts that hold you back. Now prepare or find the list of antonyms that convey a positive meaning for each of those negative words. Destroy the list of negatives and daily go through the list of positives and see how you suddenly start believing in yourself. Experience the power of hope!

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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

Rejoice, pray, give thanks – always

Rejoice always, pray constantly, and in all circumstances give thanks. The Desert Fathers

When in pain physical or psychological it is very difficult to rejoice let alone give thanks. Prayer for freedom from pain would be a natural response and yet that would not be the real prayer from the heart. In happier circumstances rejoicing is natural, prayer may be casual and giving thanks perhaps an afterthought. The emphasis of the quote is on acceptance of the moment as it unfolds with a grateful heart (thanks), humbleness (prayer) and ecstasy (rejoicing) no matter what the moment brings.

At varying times and in varying circumstances each of us spare a few moments to at least briefly reflect on the happenings in our life. This is a very basic style of acceptance of the wonderful moments that make up our life. However, it is only when one makes a conscious effort to accept the good and the bad, the highs and the lows, the ecstasy and the pain; that is when we can truthfully state that we have experienced life and its splendors. It is of course logical to ask why and how one can rejoice when in pain and why one must give thanks for the pain. If there was no pain, how can one ever appreciate the peace and harmony which we otherwise enjoy. There is a reason for pain too and when we offer thanks we acknowledge the wisdom of the almighty in alerting us with pain. A decayed tooth will pain and that is perhaps the only time we consciously and willing go to a dentist. Give thanks to the pain or all the teeth would rot and we would be blissful about it.

There are times when it becomes very difficult to accept pain and giving thanks and rejoicing seem like a person gone insane because of the pain. Someone suffering from a painful illness and suffering for long years would pray for deliverance from the pain and cannot rejoice daily. The family members and well wishers too find it tough to rejoice and give thanks. However one can surely pray for the person. Prayer is the bridge that connects rejoicing and thanks for through prayer we share our joys, our sorrows, our hopes and our faith. So often, when in pain we cry out pitifully ‘why me?’  Sometimes it is near impossible to comprehend the plans of the almighty and hence it is best we thank the almighty for making giving us the strength to bear the pain and rejoice that things could have been worse.  It is in prayer that we often discover the courage and the enlightenment to rejoice and give thanks.

Remember: “All prayers are answered if we are willing to admit that sometimes the answer is “no”

Try this:

  1. The following words are etched on the tomb stone of a young lad who died at 17 years. Notice the depth and breadth of the word which convey rejoicing, thanks and prayer.
  • Being pleasing to God and beloved, he was transferred; lest wickedness chance his understanding or deceit beguile his soul.
  1. Make a spontaneous prayer every morning and night focusing on the reasons for rejoicing, the happenings for which you want to give thanks and communicating your hopes, fears, sorrows, pain etc.

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