My Thoughts ...
Competition is a state-of-mind! Marketing is a way-of-life! Happiness is success! Problem with Strategy is that very few get it right, most use fluff! A leader is one who inspires by making a difference in the lives around! Forget about being illegal, we can't afford to be less-legal! Easy to have been born as human, then why it is so difficult to live as a human? You don't have to be rich, royal or irrational; just be a giving person! Connect at the being level, communicate to the soul! Pursue continuous improvements, but persist on innovation! Work where you are celebrated, not tolerated! Get the big picture, but deliver one that is magnanimous! Always remember the word "blame" as "boomerang" To find meaning of your life, just ask what life expects of you? Choices, inturn, create concern. Right strategy helps pick the right choice! We will be far more green, healthy and sustainable if we add 2 spoons of "contentment" to every growth-hungry diet on Wall Street!

Bliss

Yogic endeavors and their meaning in our lives

Focused but closed to life?

A few years ago, I had sent an email to a friend of mine, called up and left a voicemail, which contained a request to chat.  If everything worked out well, I had an offer for him to invest in or join up forces with a start-up. The guy never responded.  He ignored my attempts to reach him. Much later he did send a text message, which said he was busy, and he would call…which he never did. That start-up firm scaled up well and got sold many times its EBITDA a couple years later. My friend regretted so much for not being responsive to my efforts to connect with him. But, the reason: He was ‘busy and focused’, doing well and doing very well in his career, and thought I was calling him to ask or a favor. So, he ignored my attempts to reach him and was, perhaps, even discourteous.

My effort was clearly intended to involve him in an opportunity to create wealth and clearly I was thinking about the potential for making life more enchanting. We all reach out to our friends, acquaintances, and contacts for various things, such as a coffee chat to catch-up, knowledge about job opportunities, projects, and introductions. Contacting friends can entail needing help and offering to help! But, we find people, to some degree of surprise, unresponsive most of the time, thereby causing me to wonder if these people were ever open to life!

Self-imposed Limitedness?

I suppose, many of us live with ‘self-imposed limits’; that is, life limited to working, paying bills and well, just caring for our immediate families. Thus, nothing beyond these areas of focus and nothing else matters. Yes, we all should focus on and defend our priorities. This is prudent and important. But, on the other hand, ignoring other opportunities is shrinking from within as we measure life through this closed framework of ‘limited-ness’ and can actually be a self-centered and perhaps, a selfish outlook. We never treat anything beyond these priority areas as worth our time. We hold a ‘why bother’ attitude, and even at the extreme, we are convinced and believe we’re clever to stay away from those “aliens”!

Closed as we are with this career orientation of being busy, focused, professional, etc. – WE OFTEN SUFFER FROM POVERTY OF PURPOSE FOR LIFE! 

We actually lack “inclusiveness and being open to life!”

We must remember, life is an exploratory journey, which is inclusive of all the people and situations, to make ourselves available for compassionate listening, sharing and giving. And, we must realize that networking isn’t only for people in transition.

So, despite our busy lives, we should stay open to contacts and calls outside of our daily routines. We should be curious about learning and enjoying by meeting people who may be catalysts in our own business or career today or someday in the future. We all can gain through this more open approach in a somewhat structured way by:

Meeting new people

  • Being open to meeting and exchanging ideas – a quick chat in person or over the phone!

Considering new possibilities and horizons

  • Being enthusiastic about peoples’ endeavors – finding a new purpose for life!

Listening to interesting life stories

  • Learning about the life experiences of others – broadening your perspectives!

Sharing what you can afford

  • Sharing knowledge, articles, useful research, contacts, direction, etc. – being a giving person in your own way!

Standing up for a cause

  • Being a catalyst for a much-wanted change – supporting the righteous!

Mentoring and Advising

  • Sharing job references, career or business advice, etc. – making a small difference in their lives!

Try new stuff

  • Staying open to trying new things, even if these activities look crazy – exploring your life as a journey!

THINK OF OPPORTUNITIES TO CONNECT and SERVE, WHICH ARE ACTUALLY FAVORS YOU GET TO MAKE YOUR LIFE MORE ENCHANTING!

DO THIS AS YOUR GOOD KARMA, WITH NO EXPECTATIONS.

DON’T IGNORE … MAKE THE TIME … PARTICIPATE.

WITNESS YOUR ACTIONS! WITNESS YOUR OWN LIFE!

STAY OPEN TO LIFE!

These occasions can occur frequently. As such, I am unable to list all of them as part of this blog. But obviously, I wanted to reflect on and point the perils of getting dehumanized along the way.

Well, appreciate your thoughts.

Words of assurance to abhor and beware!

meditate when somebody says something

I WILL LOOK INTO IT… OK… You have heard this line time and again.

I have always wondered how much committed is a person when somebody said “I’ll look into it” and what and when to expect of any results based on such an assurance? Over the years, I have heard quite a few say this either conveying that they care or trying to be so, at the least. But there is NO assurance of you have been ‘heard’ and that there is a definitive action to take care of what you have been hoping for.

However, I wouldn’t doubt the person’s character or personality but just beware of the obvious, and manage my own expectations with magnanimity avoiding frustration.

Nevertheless, as I continued to learn the real intent of such assurances, many a occasion, I have begun to abhor them, and decided to never use them even if I can’t find better alternatives.

Some examples here below:

I SEE: Mostly in the air! One is saying nothing, other than acknowledging that the other person heard you something of what of you have said, and little in real terms.

I WILL UPDATE YOU: No commitment to any result or response time-frame or any definitive action.

I WILL COME BACK ON THIS: This too is vague and leaves no clue for when and how.

I THINK THAT’S POSSIBLE: This is still a ‘maybe’ … and at the thought level, and may or may not be considered, no promise yet to act upon yet.

I WILL ADDRESS THAT: Hmmm… diplomatic and high level without any commitment to any committed action or expected result, except that of willingness to be a party to the situation, and get involved.

WE WILL PAY IN A COUPLE OF WEEKS: Take it just as willingness of the party to pay. Usually expect the payment to take more 3 weeks even if they sincerely attempt to making a payment. Yet this is still a rough time estimate as it doesn’t give any sure day/date to expect the payment.

WILL KEEP MY EYES AND EARS OPEN: People generally say this when you reach out or express your situation, mostly when you are looking for a job or additional work/business development. Expect little or no assistance, at least in the near future.

NOTE: As I said above, and I REPEAT here again… I wouldn’t go to the extent of doubting the person’s character or personality who use these words but beware of the obvious, and manage my own expectations with magnanimity avoiding frustration.

Please add more to this that you know of, and educate all of us.

Want the job? Innerview yourself!

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Alright, you have a job interview to prepare for. There is a lot of good advice all over – online, books, friends and from career coaches asking you to do a ton of things – do your homework, look up the hiring manager on LinkedIn, read about the company, get your attire right, wear an appropriate tie, be ahead of time for the appointment, keenly observe their office environment, give a firm shake-hand, look in the eyes when you talk, etc., etc., etc.

Hmmm… This is all so good and helpful but it is yet all external and perhaps somewhat cosmetic too. So what about your inner-self? Have you ever cared to shape your interiority to help you win the job? I want to share some ‘how to’ thoughts. Take a few moments to mull over these; it may trigger some intrigue, but, well, may assist you for winning the job you want!

FEEL YOUR RESUME’ 

Either you have just created/updated your resume’ since been unemployed or after a long time (years?). You always thought you knew your resume’ inside out. Agreed. But, yet read your resume’. Read it twice. Read it from top to bottom, word to word, with a plain mind, and allow this to fill enthusiasm in you to feel – not just good – great about the person who embodies that resume’ (you!), leaving a feeling that you are precious.

Remember, even if you deliver commoditised skills, your confidence is not a commodity! Your passion is not a commodity!.

This is not a suggestion to self-hypnotize. But this exercise I found useful to shape me up for the challenge.

GO-GIVER

Usual advice is to be a ‘go-getter’. Yes. But go with a ‘giving’ mindset. Shun the thought that you are small and just another job seeker. Go with an elevated self to be the person who can make a difference to what the hiring manager plans, to the team or even to the company itself. Create a “higher purpose” or vision for the opportunity – a purpose that places the opportunity on a roadmap of larger goals, a purpose that promotes your personality as a catalyst in the plan. For example, say you are about to attend an interview for a Sales Exec job with a firm with $600 M in revenues; then assume that you will be instrumental in helping the firm reach the $1 B mark. This mindset first clears out from your mind your own suitability questions and helps you naturally display that you have the leadership and a value system that likely presuppose success in the job.

FIND INTRINSIC VALUE

Try to gauge intrinsic value the job offers – meaning your emotional satisfaction by being there, by doing it. Establish a clear value proposition that constantly reinforces and boosts your energy levels, day after day, week after week. In other words, its importance to your core – the inside of you – beyond money and title, and not just considering only those extrinsic ones. Extrinsic value comprises salary, bonus money and promotion which may be more tangible than the intrinsic ones, and those that can be subject to much social comparison.

INCESSANT LEARNER

Believing what you are doing to be right is the primary source of your confidence. If you are too confident, you become arrogant. If you are not confident enough, you may suffer a lower self-esteem. Confidence thus is a tricky thing. But you can beat this dilemma by humility. And the best personification of your humility is your ‘student-like’ perusal. So go with a ‘student-like’ mindset to learn, overcome challenges, yet be firm that you can build on what you have already learnt, to help your acceptance levels to succeed.

MEDITATE

Sometimes, just telling ourselves repeatedly that we have positive attitude but actually hold negativity within is self-deception. Remove the anxiety, self-doubt and any or all the associated negativity by meditation, if you know how to do meditation, before you leave for the interview. Meditation is said to be an inner mental exercise, where you watch your breath in silence, which liberates the mind from different forms of burdens of the past and negative feelings beyond all mental barriers such as I can’t, how do I? Go with a belief that you are doing your good karma and that there is likely serendipity that will follow.

SILENT WITHIN

Being quiet within strengthens focus. Isn’t it so hard to focus when you are making so much noise yourself from within? You want to be stable to be able to think before you speak, act, and not react. Remove all those irrelevant matters that seem to occupy your mind. and stay silent, open and active to receiving new information to process and share. Quiet people are said to be (usually) thoughtful, thinkers. They think through before making a statement. This state of mind is something you will need most during the interview.

WHO YOU ARE 

All the above ‘seem’ to build a temporary state of mind of “what you can be” just to be able to face the interview. But it is still a product of “who you are”. For example, you can be aggressive on a given day or time, and that presents “what you are” at that time. But that may not correctly reflect who you are. So view inside of you to make a right mix of choices to present yourself of who you are.

Hope these are some helpful thoughts gleaned from personal experiences and observations from the candidates I have assisted for finding employment and career growth for over a decade. (Disclaimer: This post are not professional advice).

Appreciate your thoughts to educate me to be able to assist all those preparing for interviews!

(Disclaimer: This post and suggestions are not professional advice).

Appreciate your thoughts to educate me to be able to assist all those preparing for interviews!

Breaking Strength of Love!

strength of love

A love story. I came across this story a few years ago, and saved it in my computer, Unfortunately, being in a hurry, I forgot to capture the author’s name in a hurry. So I apologize and regret for not being able to give the credit whom it belongs, but sincerely thank for the nice piece of work.

The story succinctly delivers a great message for all those married couples to understand the meaning and value of a significant emotion that is often taken for granted through silence and routine. Nonetheless, it is the key to a long and successful relationship that is centered on true love!

So read on… (more…)

“Cleanse your heart to claim your part”

meditation3

I had this dream once … A group of people prayed to god that He served food to them everyday. God agreed. So all the people sat in rows, and god began serving them bread. Strange as it seemed, each one would get different types and quantities of bread, and a few wouldn’t get any at all. So one man complained when his turn came and passed without receiving his share. God said, “I wanted to give you some, but look at your plate. It is so dirty, I couldn’t drop you bread in there. Bring it clean and I will give you sumptuously”.

I woke up and understood that god was referring to a clean heart when he spoke of the man’s plate, and the need for it to be clean before he could claim his share of bread. This is so true when it comes to being rewarded in life. In Hindi we say “apna mann saaf rakho!, translate it as “keep your heart clean (of malice)!”

Have we ever thought if we ever deserved what we already have in our possession? Haven’t we taken things for granted? Alright, let us assume that we deserved what we already have owing to our past good karma. If so, why can’t we consider this simple equation to commit to more good deeds to claim more? Why do we clamor for more personal needs when we do little to help those around us who have less and need more? Kind thoughts and well wishes can have great meaning to those in need. Is jealousy and its negative impact the easiest way for us to escape the sharing of good will? If the elimination of jealousy were replaced with a kind and grateful heart, would we be a more loving society where there are only winners and no losers?

Also known as ARISHADVARGA, the six passions of mind or desire:
1. kama — lust
2. krodha — anger
3. lobh — greed
4. moha — delusive, emotional attachment
5. mada or ahankara — pride, hubris
6. matsarya — envy, jealousy
Ref: Sankaracharya Granthavali, Basumati publication (Volume 3)

So “cleanse your heart to claim your part — of life, peace and joy!”

Thrifty Three Questions to happy shopping!

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Thrifty Three Questions!
Are you Saving, Spending or Splurging?
Never mind, you now have simple thrifty three questions that can help!

America’s best-known aphorism about thrift, as Ben Franklin said “a penny saved is a penny earned.” But American economy, by little choice now, and Americans, by their habits, have been caught up in a helpless and vicious out-of-control spending spiral, if not splurging, to move forward with an economy that poses a great threat to survival if we simply took to saving.

But there are ways that can help us to be prudent in both spending and saving. To examine our own personality of saving, we need to pose three questions – as to how we save, spend and splurge the money that is not yet ours most of the time, the debt! Do we always look for ways to save money? aware of how we’re spending? OR are simply a ‘spendthrift’?

Ironically, most people often tend to compare (confuse?) spending with being well-to-do, rich or even being magnanimous (perhaps a ‘giving personality’). All these are our own self-images driven by our own underlying emotions and attitudes. Our spending varies by instinct, temperament and inclination, and we don’t realize that we usually fail to watch ourselves who we are and how we spend?

Let me tell you a small personal experiment that helped me a great deal with such dilemma. When I moved to the US in ’99, my earnings were small, albeit sufficient to pay for an honorable living. Yet at times my wife and I would run into situations where we had to say ‘no’ to our young daughters for buying playthings and those eye-catching products when shopping at super markets and malls. So I have developed a simple set of three questions that gave them the freedom to make their own decision to buy or not to buy – they were encouraged to ask themselves a few simple questions before filling the shopping cart with desired items.

Ask these THREE BASIC QUESTIONS before you buy anything that is not so mundane:

Do we need it?              Is it worth it?               Can we avoid it?

This has had a permanent effect on their thought process when making a proposed buying decision. These principles have also helped our family as well. This set of THRIFTY THREE questions always did a quick and fantastic evaluation of the need to buy things that were often attractive, yet not really needed.

How to apply these questions? Put these questions in serial to yourself. So, first ask if you really need the item in question for sure, and your answer is a big YES. Then move ahead to the next questions, else drop the idea of buying if you can. Then, in the second question, evaluate if the price is worth the value you would derive from the product. This filters those frills arising out of ‘sale’ prices or ‘deals’ that perhaps tempted you to consider buying. If the item passes this test, then subject your decision to yet another but last question “Can I avoid buying it?” This is intended to safeguard you from spending for something that you don’t need immediately but instead, can wait.

These queries liberate us from our regular buying or non-buying inclinations and bring prudence to buying decisions. When we practice this, we guide our thoughts and actions by clarity of the purpose and what we need, and not by spontaneous and emotional drivers.

These are time-tested; fairly simple yet powerful inquiries to avoid wasteful spending, in other words an honorable way to being thrifty. Most importantly, use of these questions constantly guards against living beyond our means while still allowing for happy shopping!

Our Intrinsic Value

I received this following story of lifetime value via a forwarded email almost 15 years ago. I have preserved it for the value it always gave me when ever I have read it. While I can not acknowledge the anonymous writer, I do thank him.

Read on …

A well known speaker started off his seminar by holding up a $20 bill.In the room of 200,he asked,  “Who would like this $20 bill? “Hands started going up. He said, “I am going to give this $20 to one of you but first, let me do this.” He proceeded to crumple the dollar bill up. He then asked, “Who still wants it?” Still the hands were up in the air. “Well,” he replied, “What if I do this?”  And he dropped it on the ground and started to grind it into the floor with his shoe. He picked it up,now all crumpled and dirty. “Now who still wants it?” Still the hands went into the air. “My friends, you have all learned a very valuable lesson. No matter what I did to the money, you still wanted it because it did not decrease in value. It was still worth $20. Many times in our lives, we are dropped, crumpled, and ground into the dirt by the decisions we make and the circumstances that come our way. We feel as though we are worthless. But no matter what has happened or what will happen, you will never lose your value.

My notes:

  1. Life’s situations often seek to devalue yourself. Situations such as when you are laid-off, loose a contract or a key income source sort of, or forced to live by underselling yourself or dwell on savings or borrowed money; when future appears dim and rudderless –   NEVER BELITTLE YOURSELF! There are numerous examples that prove that your inner strength will raise you above your outward fate.
  2. When one telephone call, an email  or a kind word of introduction by a friend or acquaintance may perhaps solve your problems, but people appear to have no time or inclination to extend one. When every one in the world, including your loved ones, tend to ignore you, insult you and perhaps write you off as a non-performer, good for nothing or useless. BE PERSISTENT with the hope that your life holds greater potential!
  3. In most or all above situations, your reactive instinct is to do anything to restore what you ‘ve lost. That state of mind may also make you blame others for your problems or claim undue value for self from others good deeds. But STAY MAGNANIMOUS, AS A GIVER!

There is more to your life than what others think of you. Your intrinsic value is your self-esteem (not ego). It is your life. What you stand for. Live it full, as you will only live once!

 

The tough doesn’t get going when the going gets tough!

 

When the going gets tough, what do the tough do? We all think we know what they would do. We have all heard this saying time and again “when the going gets tough, the tough gets going! “, and readily agree that the tough would get going. But we seldom try to see a different perspective in reality. The truly tough are too smart to ‘exhaust’ them by responding to a tiresome challenge.

The really tough think that they don’t need to flex their muscles, and would stay calm and patient until something the seemingly tough challenge reveals itself to be soft, simple and easy to get at.

Remember the old story when David the shepherd boy defeated Goliath, the giant warrior. David was so small and weak physically against the big Goliath that everyone thought David would lose and die in the dual fight. But David was a real tough guy who thought through the combat possibilities and results. He never set himself for improving muscles to match Goliath’s, rejected a big weapon that was offered because it was too huge to handle, but created a ‘sling shot’ that he used to hit Goliath and killed him before the Goliath could even reach him.

I am often reminded of the movie “The Godfather” for the importance of being tough when necessary but wait until the situation to get soft to attack! Vito Corleone allows a few moments of patience and understanding  his enemy, takes out Sunny when found emotional and executes the job meticulously. It’s important to play to win. But it is more important to retain your business with integrity, and have respect for competition, but seize opportunities to eliminate odds to win.”

In daily life momentary struggles too, it’s better to give yourself the opportunity to regain your composure and get ahead. Not making headway on that proposal you need to write? Struggling to make a headway? Remember the “ten-minute rule?” Take a walk. During the break, don’t think of new strategies or arguments. Breathe well and enjoy the nature around – of bushes, birds and sun shade dancing over the window and those little somethings. By taking yourself out of the situation, you allow your brain to rest so that when you return with a fresh perspective and a calm mind you are more likely to find a new solution.

So don’t rush with courage in tough situations. Stay tuned to the possibilities, yet be unplugged consciously to the desire to react. Wait for the right moment to act in time to succeed!