Tag: Visualize

Self discipline – A key learning from the lockdown

Self discipline – A key learning from the lockdown

If you are reading this, consider yourself exceptionally lucky. You have survived the Covid 19 , the lockdown but more importantly (except if you have been a frontline warrior) you have been fortunate to have been gifted a once in a life time opportunity, to have all the time in the world to do very many things that you did postpone in the past for lack of time. Look up your New Year resolutions that you outlined not too long ago. Go through your checklist of pending tasks and the ‘to do this year’ tasks. So, how much did you achieve during the lockdown? Do you regret that the lockdown opportunity was not grasped by you?

If you have very many regrets that you wasted your time and the opportunity to get a lot of things done you have only yourself to blame. More importantly you have to blame your poor self discipline for having wasted this opportunity of a life time. Well everything is not lost. From all indications, the lockdown may get extended for many and so it is time to become self disciplined and at least now make use of the time at our disposal more fruitfully.

Here are some tips to be self disciplined:

Have a good routine for every day – The first thing to keep in mind is that a lockdown is NOT a holiday. In fact it is a regular day for you and for quite a few who are not on work from home, the only issue is that there is no specific job to be done. That is precisely why you need to have a good routine so that you fill up the available time doing all the important jobs you kept pending. It is also a time to give yourself more time for pursuing your own pursuits that you kept in abeyance because you lacked the time. Do you have an hourly schedule drawn up at least for 8 -10 hours. You can add your normal commute time in addition as bonus time. Now you have a clear cut agenda for yourself. Inbuilt time to pursue your hobbies, to learn a new skill, experiment with something that you have craved for etc.

Visualize a motivation to follow the routineYou will find it hard to follow your routine unless you have some strong motivation that pulls you to do it. Obviously in most cases the real motivation will be intrinsic motivation since you do not get any major tangible outcomes for doing what you are passionate about. In fact, the trick to be motivated is searching for and identifying the intrinsic motivators for every task you commit yourself to. You will find that the quality of your work is always much better, the urge to do it well much stronger and the outcomes always positively stimulating. Alternatively it must be driven by a fear that you have ( which could be as simple as committing to your kids or your better half or significant one that you hope to do xyz next day). You can be sure they will follow up on your progress and fear of failing them would be a good way to be self disciplined.

Minimize distractionsThe most common cause of lack of self discipline is pleasurable distractions. For the tech savvy generation gadgets of all types, with the mobile phone being the chief culprit are the major source of distractions. Then there are other distractions like lure of indulging in any activity that gives instant gratification be it light reading or playing games or indulging in personal hobbies etc. The best way to overcome distractions is to make a serious effort to distance the source of distraction from you. You should ensure that your mobile phone or the sports gear or the light reading material is never anywhere close to you when you are following your routine. The more difficult it is to access it, the higher the chances of you being self disciplined. Incidentally, ensure your work environment is conducive to productive work. The work environment must be well lit, well ventilated, neat and tidy etc.

Experience the’ feel good’ from the progress made The progress made because of self motivation must not only be experienced by you but you must learn to cherish it. Every little progress is a step forward towards success. Value every small success because it motivates you to remain focused and self disciplined. Be aware also that initial progress can be slow, takes a lot of effort and the output barely noticeable. That is when yourself belief will keep you on course. Your self belief is what helps beings the journey and your progress and success is what helps fuel your self discipline.

Make no excusesNo matter what the situation, never make an excuse for not committing to your routine. Like marriage vows, in good times and in bad, in good health and in sickness, you are married to your commitment. No excuse can be tolerated. In the rare instance where you miss out on your commitment make up for it by working more at the first opportunity. Remember that self discipline means self sacrifice too. Your time is finite and you have to allocate it appropriately, often at the cost of more agreeable alternatives that you need to sacrifice.

Be self disciplined and achieve anything you set your mind to.

Try these:           

  1. You are to commit raising a certain amount as your contribution to a relief fund. You decide the amount but no amount can be contributed from your personal funds or by raising funds by disposing off your belongings. You have to raise the amount as donations from anybody without giving any commitment to them about you returning the favor or indicating that this is a task you have taken up as a challenge.
  2. What would be a real surprise for your best friend or spouse? There mu.st be a significant cost or effort  by you attached to the surprise Can you ensure you surprise them on any occasion before the year end?
  3. What is the one thing new you gained because of the time you got all for yourself during this lockdown. It should not be materialistic but it could be in terms of new knowledge, skills, relationships, insights, self discovery etc.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Core life skills

Core life skills

In a world that is constantly changing and evolving, the challenges of coping with the changes and the evolving dynamics, are both stressful and laced with apprehension. Yet what does not change and what helps one remain balanced during testing times, are the core beliefs that we should embrace with faith. It is not just the technology that challenges us but more worrisome is the human dynamics that have been cast asunder; the traditional family values, societal norms and the fragility of the bonds between cultures, regions, religions, beliefs and values.  Yet to retain our sanity and remain equanimous  in the face of changes that tend to overwhelm us, all we need to do is focus and implement the core life skills which are:

Calm, but alert – If you see a duck paddling in the water, you would never notice how frantically it is paddling below the water because above the water it looks exceedingly calm and serene. Similarly, in the wild, observe the docile creatures like deer’s and gazelle’s. They remain calm but constantly look around to be alert to any danger lurking in the thickets. They do not visualize trouble in their mind and get anxious but they do anticipate trouble, as they are aware of predators around. We humans tend to absorb negativity and project it in our outlook instead of taking calculated risks with an inbuilt trigger to help us remain safe.

Relaxed, but ready – Observe the great athletes of the world. They know that they are competing against the best and that the results are quite open ended giving everyone a fair chance to win. Yet when they warm up before the event, they are fairly relaxed, prepped up but calm, anxious perhaps but equally excited because they know that it is crunch time. Their training and self belief have got them thus far, it is just their performance that matters. Winning and losing are par for the course and that is why they prepare well and compete hard. They are always ready for the competition. No tensions, no anxieties, no worries.

Smooth, but sharp –A pin, a needle, a nail have a sharp point but the rest of it is sleek and smooth. A football or basketball too is smooth but only when it has the air that sharpens its contours. A cricket and golf ball gets its sharpness when the exterior is hard but it is the smoothness that allows it to roll well. In life you can be smooth by being empathetic, polite, respectful, committed, loyal and honest. At the same time you need to be sharp by being assertive, determined, confident, courageous and focused.

Humble, but confident– Success must breed humility not arrogance. Failure must be seen as a stepping stone to success. When you get success, there is no virtue more important that being humble to keep your grounded. When failure unexpectedly makes its rounds in your life, believe that they temporary hiccups and be confident that you are well prepared to overcome the setbacks. As they say, a Lion never roars after a kill; it never has to announce his accomplishments. At the same time be aware that a Lion is successful only 17-20% of the time it attempts a kill. Yet it is supremely confident that it can succeed the next time around. Your humility must never be seen as your weakness nor must your confidence morph into arrogance.

Try these:           

  • What are your three favorite quotes / proverbs / inspirational sayings / poem’s? Do they reflect any of the above core principles of life?
  • Which of the above 4 principles best represent your nature? Which principle do you think you will find most difficult to implement and why?
  • Can you identify one teacher, one friend, one colleague and one relative who best display most of the above principles in their life?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

Nothing permanent

Nothing in this world is permanent. German proverb

This is both a sobering thought and an alluring one for it encapsulates life itself.  History is witness to the rise and fall of not just the Roman empire but many a kingdom and dynasty and therein lies a tale of both grandiose successes and devastating defeats and catastrophy.  The evolution of man itself, going by Darwin’s theory is another splendid testimony that nothing is permanent. The rapid changes that take the world of science and technology by storm reinforce the reality that the past will be obliterated by the present only to be dazzle like a shooting star for a brief period before the future overtakes it rapidly. So what are the lessons in it for us?

There are 4 important lessons that we can effectively learn from the reality that there is nothing permanent.  The first is that we can have hope; the second that we should be prepared; the third that we must be ready to adapt and the fourth is that we must proactively ensure that we drive change and ensure a fresh breath of air and sustain progress. We can look out in hope when things are at its worst simply because we know that sooner or later the reality will change because nothing in this world is permanent. When we have hope life becomes easier to put up with, troubles seem more bearable and the future seems inviting. Words like retirement, death, transfer, promotion, resignation indicate that there is a forthcoming change that will happen and for sure things will never be the same thereafter. While some changes could be detrimental, most changes signify a possibility of betterment, a move towards positivity and chances of improvement.

Being prepared would help us set our sails to catch the winds of change that signify that the old order will give way to the new.  We need to anticipate the future trends, look out for signs of the old order getting dismantled and broken down and jump on to the right bandwagon at the right time. Technology is ruthless in demanding that we be prepared to change. The concept of communication has been completely revolutionized by the technological advances and it is those who are prepared who are laughing all the way to the bank for they set their sails right.

If nothing is permanent then it implies that there would be drastic changes and this means we must despite our worst fears and inhibitions be prepared to change. Those who cannot accept or adapt to change will soon find themselves overrun by the crumbling old order that is systematically being dismantled and the speedy new order that is being erected simultaneously. The systematic disappearance of dinosaurs is attributed to their inability to adapt but the disappearance of the ink pen and the typewriters are but small footnotes in the modern history of evolution.

Since nothing will be permanent, the real winners are those who can proactively go and replace those structures by newer and more efficient ones. The key lies in seeking changes, making discoveries, thinking differently, being visionary and daring to take risks. When the past is replaced there could be resentment, opposition, anger and resistance and it those who can weather these storms and remain resilient  and rock steady who can overcome and force the old order to give way to the new. Technology proves the point that no one can take his place under the sun for granted. Microsoft seemed invincible, then cam Google who seemed monolithic yet now it is time for Facebook to take its place under the sun. Notice the pace of how what seemed permanent changed and life will just get more fast paced, action oriented and dynamic.

Remember: “Any change, even a change for the better, is always accompanied by drawbacks and discomforts.”  Arnold Bennett

Try this:

  1. Those of you knowing Hindi / Urdu will be strongly advised to enjoy Aziz Naza’s  well known Qawwali ‘ Chadta Suraj dheere dheere http://tinyurl.com/38v4fv3 or go though the lyrics of it http://tinyurl.com/373wfy2 . Notice how powerful the message of permanency being overrun at every turn is emphasized.
  2. Attempt to imagine changes in the following spheres of life
  • Efficient transportation
  • Population control
  • Environment protection
  • Health care
  • Human Relations

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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

Dream big

A person can grow only as much as his horizon allows.  John Powell

If we see some of our major achievements in our lives, we would feel elated at some and a trifle disappointed at others. The ones which we are thrilled about are invariably those in which we have achieved some tremendous success and possibly scaled some dizzy heights. What disappoints us often are achieving relatively lesser success where in our view we set our standards a lot lower and could have excelled far beyond our own accomplishments.

The realization that we did not think beyond our comfort zone and our fear of failure are two critical reasons why we are unable to stretch our imagination and widen our horizons. Moving beyond our comfort zone poses problems because we are not used to thinking big nor are we having the conviction to attempt something different. At best we move the bar a wee bit more and then since we are not convinced ourselves our efforts to attempt it are also feeble and half hearted. Obviously when the crunch time comes we may not achieve the goals set and we reinforce our belief that we should not try too much.  Most times it is fear of failure that is the mill stone that bogs us down. When our focus is to avoid failure rather than achieve a spectacular win, we are completely risk averse. The fear paralyzes us and the word failure conjures images of shame and loss of face. In reality failures should spur us on to prove that we are up to the challenge. Very few of us take this as the trigger to set our eyes on bigger goals and worthwhile challenges.

Lack of a worthwhile motivation can also prove to be a dampener when it comes to seeing beyond the visible horizons. Unless we can see a reason, a reward, honor, glory or the sense of ecstasy at the end of the journey, we would not even attempt anything that we perceive as risky, daunting and cumbersome. Motivation is what acts as the carrot that teasingly dangles ahead and we are keen to grab it even if the challenge is way beyond our capabilities. The vast majority cannot think beyond simply because of sheer laziness and / or they have always operated within a regimented paradigm.  When people prefer to do bare minimum work and operate within their own set routine and parameter, there is very little scope to be adventurous and imaginative. They would dream of spectacular triumphs and ground breaking achievements but would shy away from even visualizing it when awake. They are just satisfied with the routine, the time tested and the limited role they have chosen for themselves.

Remember: Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine and at last you create what you will.  George Bernard Shaw

Try this:

  1. Examine your wardrobe and observe the commonality in the majority of the attire you have; patterns, colors, styles, designs etc. Now consciously attempt to procure 3 items of clothing that are visible to everyone which is completely incongruent with your current style. Wear these clothes and notice the feelings you get, and also pay attention to the comments and observations of others.
  2. In this festive season, think of 1 imaginative gift each for the following people (price not to exceed Rs.500 or USD 10 approx)
  • A retired teacher you loved very much
  • Your favorite aunt/ uncle
  • Your nephew / niece
  • A gift for an inmate of an old age home
  • A gift for your pet (dog/ cat)
  • A surprise gift that can be won by any one from your friends circle based on a lucky draw

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

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