From Use Me to Need Me?

My first memory of the phrase “Use Me!” is, when as a kid, I saw this cute little dustbin in the corridors of my school, asking me not to throw the wrapper of the chocolate that I had just eaten, on the ground, instead inside the one and only place it should be thrown into.

Indeed the idea of Utilitarianism caught my imagination, which in itself is a fantastic idea to have around oneself, the only catch being, if the very idea is being utilized in a smart way.

Unfortunately, as it has turned out, lot of things from:

Doing Networking to making friends, 

Exploiting resources to minting money, 

Consumerism to Materialism, 

Has led to a state of affairs, where the first thought that comes in all our minds is,

How can we make use of something?

Will I benefit from using it in this way, or I need to find an alternate which can make the utilization more efficient, in turn leading to more profits?

What is that key differentiator/ USP when I go about exploiting the resources?

What this has led to is a complete neglect of the destruction and harm that we are causing to not only this planet but also to the minds of individuals.

Especially the next generation kids, whom we are breeding into robots who would want to run after success the moment they gain some control over their mind and body, the very basis of which is to accumulate as many possessions as possible at any cost.

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And then we happily have those table-top conversations about how bad the world is becoming, how difficult it would be for our children to survive and debating about accumulating more and more for the security that we would want to pass on to our next generation.

As it turns out, neither of the table-top conversations nor the accumulation would slow down the tide of destruction,

The only thing which might work, since we still have sometime, is a realization that the very basis of success need not be money; after all:

A mother’s effort and time which she devotes towards bringing up her child, cannot be weighed in terms of money,

So, how about going from a use based thought process towards a need based thought process?

How about slowing down the pace of exploits, giving us time to look at it from a sustainable perspective?

How about giving up a share of profits for a better ecosystem?

How about incorporating other values and parameters as the basis of success with possessions making a very small percentage, as a consequence of what one does and not what one aims to do?

The ball is very much in our court, if we fail to hit the right shot now, doomsday ahead,

But I have full faith in the power of utilitarianism that homo sapiens have got so accustomed to using in their day-to-day life, which would slowly but surely enable all of us to think about the very fundamentals of existence.

Source for the Image: https://www.shutterstock.com/search/dustbin

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The Forgotten!

कहते हैं किसी चीज़ को शिद्दत से चाहो तो पूरी कायनात उसे तुमसे मिलाने में लग जाती हैं,
तो क्या ये चाहने में कमी का असर है, या फिर हालातों का फितूर जो कुछ लोग इसी दुनिया की भीड़ में कहीं खो जाते हैं.

हर कोई तेंदुलकर या धोनी तो नहीं होता, पर सब द्रविड़ जैसी मेहनत तो कर ही सकते हैं, फिर क्यों कुछ लोग अपने हुनर का सदुपयोग नहीं कर पाते.

हर कोई सीईओ तो नहीं बन सकता, पर क्यों वो सीईओ बनने के ख्वाब भी देखना भूल जाते हैं, क्या उनमें हिम्मत नहीं होती, या वो इसे अपने से परे समझ कर, उसकी इच्छा रखने का साहस ही नहीं कर पाते.

क्यों मन में इतना डर, क्यों दिल में इतनी असुरक्षा की भावना हमें आगे बढ़ने से रोक देती है.

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क्यों वो आखरी ओवर में १५ रन बनाना असंभव लगने लगता है, क्यों हम प्रयत्न करने से पहले ही हार मान लेते हैं.

जहाँ ज्यातादर लोग, अपने को इस सोच में उलझा हुआ पाते हैं, वही कई लोग ऐसे भी हैं, जो इन बातों पे जीत पा कर इनसे ऊपर उठ जाते हैं, और उन्ही को चढ़ता सूरज इत्यादि जैसे वाक्यों से सम्भोदित किया जाता है.

तो क्या ऐसे लोग बाकी लोगों से अलग होते हैं, क्या उनकी परवरिश किसी ख़ास प्रकार से की जाती हैं, या फिर खुद ही वो अपने को इतना बुलंद कर लेते हैं, कि खुदा भी उनकी रज़ा के सामने झुक जाता है.

जो भी हो, वो इतने भी अलग नहीं होते कि उनकी तरह कोई और बन ना पाए. आखिर गवास्कर के बाद किसने सोचा था कि एक तेंदुलकर आ जायेगा, और तेंदुलकर के बाद किसने सोचा था कि एक कोहली आ जायेगा.

ये वो लोग हैं, जिनको भरोसा होता है, कि वो कुछ कर सकते हैं. ये वो लोग हैं जो दिन भर रात भर केवल उसी सपने को जीते हैं, ये वो लोग हैं, जिनके लिए जीना अपने को उस एक लक्ष्य के प्रति पूरी तरह समर्पित करने के बराबर बन जाता है.

ये लोग उन अनेक लोगों से आगे बढ़ जाते हैं, जो हुनर होने के बावजूद, इसी दुनिया के किसी कोने में अपने को खोया हुआ पाते हैं.

Source for the Image: https://www.flickr.com/photos/alexandra-roseliza/16109918764

Success=====!

Let me see what this means:

Success=====Wealth?

Success=====A luxury car?

Success=====A house on the Marine Drive?

Success=====Traveling in business class?

Success=====Dining in a 7-star?

Success====Owning a 5000 Euro Louis Vuitton bag?

Success====Fame?

Well, going by what the world perceives, going by what the society tells us, going by what we have been socialized into believing, going by what we are praised or followed for, the above, in all possibilities seems to be true.

People who are totally conditioned to the point of believing each and every word of the same, would go all out in arguing what else it could mean, for money can buy them loads of stuff, fame can get the who’s who among others bow their heads in respect satisfying the egos which most would refer to as the inner self.

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Now let us consider an alternative to the above narrative:

Success====Starts with peace of mind?

Success====Well being?

Success====Playfulness?

Success====being joyful in the moment?

Success====living life to the fullest?

Success====experiencing the wonderful nature?

Success====being pleasant within=good health?

Wonder, whether the alternative view leads to the former one or vice-versa?

Wonder, whether the ability to be joyful within, leads to enjoying the fruits of one’s hard work and wealth that comes along with the same?

Wonder, whether good health enables us to enjoy time that we spend with our near and dear ones along with the materialistic possessions that we tend to identify ourselves so strongly with?

Wonder, whether we need to redefine the way we all perceive success?

Wonder, whether the world that is, was not meant to be conquered but to be experienced?

Food for thought, haan!

Source for Image: https://www.theodysseyonline.com/success-is-subjective-term

Smile while You Are!

Recently had the pleasure of speaking with one of the most successful of guys, my senior (S), who has gone on to make, as they say, a killing of sorts. Here is what came out of the conversation:

S: “You know, I have had the chance to experience lot of offices through out my life, and one thing was prevalent in all”

Me: “What was it?”

S: “The gloomy faces of people sitting in front of their desks, few seem to be having the worst time of their life, and few trying to show that there was lot of work and hoping that 10-12 hours that they are supposed to spend will pass by somehow.”

Me: “What do you think, was the reason behind the same?”

S: “I used to wonder the same. Somehow, I thought, it might be that most don’t like their work, and do it for their survival, some, I thought, might not like the team or their bosses they were working with.”

Me: “And?”

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S: “But you know what, slowly, I realized that people have got into a mode of remaining gloomy. Somehow, they have been conditioned to be sad and grim-faced. They have lost the charm of what life was supposed to offer to each one of them.”

Me: “So, how did you ensure, that such a thing didn’t happen in your office?”

S: “You know, the first and probably the only thing, I looked for in the guys whom I was hiring, was their attitude and perspective towards life. How they looked at their past? What they thought about their future? And the most important of all, what do they think about their present?”

Me: “That’s it?”

S: “Yup. For if they were too depressed about their past, or too hopeful about their future, having loads of expectations, without focusing on the present, then they were bound to create an environment and build a culture, laden with fear and insecurity. And you would be bemused to know that along with their offer letter, I gave them a piece of advice on the letter head of our company.”

Me: “?”

SMILE WHILE YOU ARE 🙂

An absolute cracker of an advice, applies to all kinds of life that we tend to associate and identify ourselves with, be it our professional or personal, isn’t it? 😉

Source for the Image: https://www.shutterstock.com/search/smile

Success = Suffering!

If you are wondering how absurd the blog title of equating success to or leading to suffering is, by the time you end up reading this peace, either way you might have different views altogether ;).

Somehow, success in our era, tends to bring along with itself, lot of suffering in the form of hypertension, lifestyle diseases such as diabetes etc.

If you happen to be living in the financial capital of our country, and have had the chance to go for an early morning walk to the extremely picturesque Marine Drive, where supposedly all the successful turn up every morning to get their body in good shape, would suggest you do a simple experiment.

Just look at the people who pass by, and notice the expression of success reflecting suffering and try rendering the comfort of a smile on to each one of them.

More often than not, you would see a perplexed face with a thought why the hell someone is smiling at them, or the best on offer would be a forced grin.

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Since childhood, I was taught that success brings happiness, am sure, many were taught similar things by their parents, schools and the who’s who of society.

Just wonder why that success or being affluent is not leading to the happiness that it was supposed to embrace.

Is it because the manner in which that success is being obtained? Is it the process that takes a toll on one’s psyche?

Or

Is it because we need to rethink about how, as a society, we are defining the very essence of success?

For if all was OK, one should be happy enough getting the fruits of desire. Something, for sure, must be wrong in which, we mortals, are perceiving success and chasing the same to the best of our abilities, achieving it, yet feeling the unpleasantness having obtained the same.

Food for thought ?  😉

Source for the Image: https://www.ageofthecustomer.com/index.php/do-you-prefer-achievement-or-success/

Mary Kom Vs Vijender Singh!

Marriage or for that matter, any relationship that has to do with physical attraction cum emotional binding (if it exists that is ;)) brings along with itself a sense of possession and accomplishment, to start with.

As the years pass by and the two become used to and tend to lose that sense of wanting, it looks like a dream bout between Mary Kom and Vijender Singh, if such was ever to take place, with each party throwing around the load of expectations on one another.

Just wonder, when the society was being formed and roles of each party were being formulated, the one who said, behind every successful man there is a woman, forgot to mention, behind every successful woman there can be a man, who can pretty much play the supporting role and should take great pride in doing the same.

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If an entire movie, ki and ka, was not enough to inspire you to think about the same, I am sure you should by now, realize, that there are so many women doing some fantastic work in every field of work that you can possibly imagine.

If they have it in them, then what’s the issue in admitting, that they indeed are better at doing certain things which a man can only possibly wonder, in the wildest imagination of theirs.

I guess, that’s what being flexible and open minded means. Isn’t it?

Statements such as, “how can one survive on bahu’s income!”, which by the way is not so uncommon in Tier II and beyond cities and towns in India, need to be introspectively looked at.

If we are to evolve in the right sense of the word, this kind of mentality and perspective needs to change big time.

After all, it’s about discovering the consciousness inside oneself and not really get influenced from what the things and beings external to you teach.

As far as Mary Kom and Vijender Singh are concerned, they will continue to remain champions in their respective zones, just that when they come together at the same place at the same time, wonder how it would turn out to be ;).

Source for the Image: http://pngimg.com/img/sport/boxing_gloves

It’s all about Playing Games!

Sports has had a very integral role in my growing up years. Has been instrumental in teaching me things which I will cherish all my life. What comes along with playing sports is you get into a habit of watching sports and when it be the biggest sporting event, one can hardly miss upon the wonderful performances.

Yes, Olympics did have its own set of controversies and accomplishments, which each one of us know and would not really want to get into the complexities of the same. What I would instead want to talk about is few things which I learnt from my sporting years, both playing and watching, and which I think are extremely relevant when it comes to leading our day-to-day lives.

I still remember, cable connection used to be a luxury at home only to be availed during our summer holidays because my mom was very particular about her kids not wasting time on the same and instead wanted us to focus on academics.

Those were the days, when on a Sunday, if there was supposed to be a cricket match being played between India and another nation, when I would get up around 5 or so in the morning to first play my favorite sports and then get ready to watch it at a friend’s place.

Probably, the ease with which one becomes disciplined with no one else telling you all the time to do so, was the biggest habit which I was drawn into, courtesy sports. Now I realize how his gets translated to any other aim or goal that you set for yourself and carve out a path to achieve the same, which comes pretty naturally to you and makes it a cake walk when it comes to adapting yourself to the grueling schedule.images

While, on the field, since it’s a team sports and your victory is determined by how everyone else is performing, a team sports, no matter how much you would want to, doesn’t give you the liberty to become selfish, instead teaches you to do your job selflessly, striving towards a larger goal at all times.

Such great mentoring, especially during the formative years of a child, instills in him/her an ability to think beyond one’s profit and loss and instead focus on the common good, leaving little scope for comparisons and the resulting jealousy, in turn enabling one to lead a much happier life.

The wonderful think about sports like any other other field is the adulation that one gets when one wins. Though it has its own confidence boosting effect, at the same time, it more often than not, leads to over-confidence and ego.

But as with every other thing, this two has its in-built neutralizing formula, where in you don’t always win, but lose as well. It’s incredible how the ego comes shattering down when you brag and lose, in turn teaching you a very important lesson in life, which is to remain balanced at every point of time in your life and take success and failures in the same stride.

Another extra-ordinary thing about sports is that it teaches you that there are no limits to what you can achieve. In every tournament new records are set, which inspires every individual to have faith in his/her ability to go beyond the usual, and more importantly to think that one can actually cross the line with better efforts, thereby motivating one to continue with the hard work.

And the most important of all that sports teaches you is, that nothing comes easy. You have to put in the hard work, you have to make each moment, each day count for the incremental improvements to take place, you have to be conscious of the fact that it needs to be worked upon.

Doesn’t it sound similar to working on any social relationship in the World that we tend to get into during the wonderful journey that we all call life, be it spouse or kids?

If it does hit your realization, then make sure you and your family get into a habit of playing sports, for it’s all about playing games and the more you play with the right spirit, the more satisfied and happy you would be in life.

Source for Image: https://sites.jmu.edu/103fall14/are-youth-sports-too-competitive-draft-i/

The Dreaded Review!

It’s again the same time of the year when the ever so dreaded at the same time looked forward to term, review, will take place or has already taken place for the majority who work in order to make a living.

More often than not, many would think that the boss has not been fair in evaluating all aspects of the work that you might have done in the year gone by.

Many might perceive that due credit has not been given to for what you accomplished and somewhere the credit has been bagged by a colleague whom you believe might have performed at a level which might be far less than what you perceive to have performed at.

Have you ever wondered, what this review consist of? No matter how much you want to rationalize and make the entire process logical and fair, that’s what the HR department all over the world aim at and claim to be doing, the thing that matters the most is how well you are able to cope up with relationships in your ecosystem.

Be it your home or in office, what matters the most is your ability to get along well with people with different opinions and mindset and to be able to build a genuine healthy relationship with all.

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And that in no way is suggesting that one should fool around and be political about the entire aspect, but have a fairly high level of compassion and integrity when it comes to be able to slip into others’ shoes and see the world from their perspective.

Harder done than said, one who is able to accomplish this feat, never seems to have a bad review, be it the wife at home, or be it the boss in the office, be it the parents waiting to get a call from their loved ones or be it the sons and daughters waiting for their mom or dad to come back and spend quality time with them.

I would admit that there have been people who have crossed my path on several occasions who have been an inspiration in the true sense of the word. They have taught me how to handle situations or more importantly how to perceive the situation in the first instance.

Such men/women are exemplary in everything they do. They tend to have a positive bent of mind and look at things very differently from the rest of us. These people take success and failure (which comes very seldom) in the same stride.

These are the men/women, who wouldn’t want to focus on the past, having drawn their learning, and would instead focus on the present. They would be more interested in what didn’t work rather than why it didn’t work.

Such are the people that one should try to associate with, learn from them, get inspired and even emulate the aspects which make them so wonderful and different. After all, it’s better to have people with a positive attitude surrounding you compared to people who are always whining or complaining about one thing or the other.

Friends, reviews will come and go, sometimes they will be good at times bad, but what will matter the most is your ability to motivate yourself to become a better individual each minute, each hour and each day of your lives.

Source for Image: http://mobile-spyreviews.com/mobistealth_reviews/

Moving Out!

More often than not we humans, worry more about getting in rather than moving out, whether it be a job that one has been desperately searching for, or a movie hall when the movie is about to begin, be it a shared taxi to get the finest possible seat, or be it the shared toilet in a hostel where every one is gearing to do what they are of course supposed to do.

Yes, there are always exceptions to the rule with the likes of us, Indians who have got so habitual to breaking cues when it comes to, lets say, getting out of an airplane immediately after it comes to a halt or be it the ticket counter for various utilities, thanks to the insecurity that is so deeply imbibed in all of us having been brought up in an era with stiff competition and lack of resources.

Somehow, moving out in some cases, at the right time, is as important, if not more, than moving in, be it an emergency evacuation or a failed relationship. Today, I am going to talk about an aspect of our lives which tends to consume at least 60-70% of our productive life, if not more. Yes, I am referring to none other than the professional set up towards which we tend to devote more than half our lives.

How often have you thought of calling it a quit, yet staying for the lack of courage or contemplating the uncertainty of the future? How often have you forced yourself to go to the office every single day of your life trying to motivate yourself for something/someone which you don’t like doing and if it were not for the society around you, you would never do so?

How often have you neglected your true callings, your inner voice to continue to do something which brings you lot of bitcoins and perceived social success but not enough happiness? How often have you craved for spending that extra hour with your loved ones but have not been able to do so for the challenges and complexities of living a “conventional” investment banking kind of a profile?

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I believe many of us would have been into the situations where we would have no answers to the above. Many would wonder that in order to live the kind of life that one or one’s loved ones want to live comes with sacrifices. Many would want to call the people who follow their heart as losers and might be inspired by the likes of “chatur” of “3 Idiots” fame, still there are these few who follow their heart and tend to become the “chanchads” of their batch.

If you ask the latter, what they achieve by doing so, they would give you all kinds of philosophies supporting their lifestyle, which you might really not agree with, still the kind of peace and calm that is so evident on their faces, even after not being able to convince you, would make you feel jealous of the fact, and would leave you wondering, “kaash main bhi aisa kar paata/paati“.

If you think they are doing something drastically out of this world, you are mistaken, for they are only doing the thing they like doing. They are doing what they think they were supposed to do, having born on this planet earth. They believe that if if they were not doing the same, they wouldn’t be doing anything, possibly not living at all.

Yes, they are normal human beings. They too have insecurities regarding not being able to accomplish the love of their life. Yes, they fear being not able to make it big and meet others’ expectations.

But the difference is that they are able to move out of this thinking which holds them back, in a flash. They are able to overcome the fears arising out of the above. They are able to convince one and all about the happiness that would come in, if they were doing what they think they were meant to do.

They take failures and success in the same stride. They learn to become moderately happy when they strike gold and moderately sad when they don’t. For them the path or the journey becomes more important than the goal.

They master the art of moving out of the normal. After all, don’t you think the ultimate goal for all of us remain more or less the same, yet paths will differ significantly.

Now, it’s up to you to decide which path to tread, for it’s only you who knows where your true calling lies. Time to MOVE OUT?

Source for Image: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/530791506055972532/

2 Sides of the Coin!

When you succeed, you are often asked, as well you often tend to focus on speaking about what things you did right, what is to be done in order to taste bliss, and more often than not the conversations tend to revolve around you and what you have done to get what you desired.

But there is a totally different take on things for those who don’t so called succeed. For these perceived unfortunate folks, the conversation revolves around what was not to be done, what they did wrong, what could have they done differently, what were the areas where they could improve and somehow they seem to talk about not them but others who did things in a different manner and tasted success.

For the former lot, the conversations seem to be conclusive, whereas for the latter who didn’t succeed, the conversations tend to be progressive and often moving in the right direction.

For the latter, to fail and then succeed is another high altogether which the former might not be able to comprehend having not gone through the same. Having said that the former don’t have any harsh feelings about not being able to fail and they are more than happy that they succeeded ;).

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But life, as it comes to us all, there would be times when we would fail, and times when we would succeed in our endeavors. There are bound to be highs and lows in life. The earlier one realizes the same, the earlier one learns to take both success and failure in the same stride.

The earlier one learns to fail and then succeed, the earlier one becomes better equipped on handling different so called stressful situations of our lives. The earlier one learns to fall in the right manner, the earlier one learns to rise faster with same enthusiasm.

That doesn’t mean that you should try to fail whenever the opportunity arises :), but if it were to happen, learn from the same and be prepared for the next challenge of your life.

After all, life is not about success and failure, it is how well you understand the 2 sides of the coin and evolve from there.

Source for the Image: http://www.alternet.org/economy/trillion-dollar-coin-joke-or-game-changer