Look beyond what you see and think

“Judgements prevent us from seeing the good that lies beyond appearances.” ~Wayne Dyer 
Being judgemental is having or displaying an overly critical point of view. Being aware is having knowledge or perception of a situation or fact.
Be aware, not judgemental. This means to remain mindful of all realities, including the negatives, but not to focus on them. People get caught up in the negatives because reactions manifest themselves as judgements, accusations, criticisms or labeling. Many of us have fixed opinions about people or situations, that can be perceived by others as judgemental or harsh. No sooner do we judge or criticize, we put everything into convenient boxes and mentally seal the fate of another person or of a situation. Our vision and attitude remain judgemental or critical if there is no input to encourage a positive change. There cannot be a positive output when there is a negative input. We want others to be better but, instead of helping, or having faith in them and seeing their good qualities, we concentrate on their past, their weaknesses or their mistakes.
Know that people are individuals, with their own peculiarities and characteristics. Try to develop capabilities to analyse and understand them. Learn the power of magnanimity. Accept others despite their failings. If you do need to criticise, try to weigh up the consequences before speaking to the person concerned because criticism needs to be constructive. Tread carefully when asked for your opinion. Demonstrating wisdom can bring respect. Steer clear of stereotyping people. This just leads to mediocre judgements. Keep that subtle control over your opinions creates the opportunities to observe human behaviour even more closely.
Look beyond what you see and think.
Categories: Worldly Whorls | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Can Identity Be A Choice?

“Who are you?”

Asked the same question ten times in a row, one is nudged to the realization that we all have more than one identity. Some people tend to identify at first with their name, nationality, gender, profession; others define themselves through their relationships (I am a mother, a friend) and some think of themselves first and foremost as human beings, a ‘soul’, a ‘force of energy’ or as ‘seekers of wisdom’. This exercise also brings the awareness that beyond these layers, there exists a mysterious ‘inner core’ or ‘essence’ that defies definition but shines through all our different identities. We are always ourselves, whether this be at work, with our family or on our own. In each environment we express different aspects of ourselves, but deep down we are still the same mysterious ‘centre of awareness’. In short, we are both one and many.

Are we just born with an identity? Is it ‘God-given’ and we have no choice but to accept and bear it as a kind of destiny? Or is identity something that can change and even become a choice? Most people would say that there are certain aspects of our identity (sex, cultural roots, etc) that we cannot change. Others, however, are the outcome of choices we made at some stage. We were not born to be ‘computer programmers’ or ‘mothers’ – but we chose to become them. And, most importantly, we can always choose how much priority we give to each of our different identities, even if we cannot change some of them. What do we prioritize: Our gender? Our nationality? Our status? or Our inner qualities?

For society to function and cultures to evolve, we need to learn how to transcend our differences. To consciously choose an identity that enables us to connect more with others and to empathise with them. Life is a journey from unconsciousness to consciousness. To be unconscious means to be impelled by inner or outer forces or circumstances. Whereas to be conscious means to be aware that we have a choice. Amartya Sen says: “To deny choice where choice exists is not only an epistemic mistake, it can also entail a moral and political failure through abdication of one’s responsibility to face the fundamental, Socratic question: ‘How should I live?’”

Choice is inescapably associated with responsibility. It seems much easier to say, ‘This is how I am, I cannot change it’. But history is full of atrocities that were committed because people felt compelled to act in line with a perceived and fixed identity. Amartya Sen’s message is that we should choose our identity of our own free will.

To quote Kofi Annan – “To live is to choose. But to choose well, you must know who you are and what you stand for, where you want to go and why you want to get there.

Categories: Worldly Whorls | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Resistance

Resistance to change is the act of opposing or struggling with modifications or transformations that alter the status quo.
Resistance is a sign that our ego is being challenged and it occurs as we perceive the imminent change as a threat. Key words here are ‘perceive’ and ‘threat’. The threat need not be real or large for resistance to occur.
When we have to ‘face’ something new the first thing we meet is our own resistance. As we realize that there is something within us that needs to change, we experience resistance. To allow the change to flow through you, Let Go. Let go of things that you are comfortable with. Let go of abilities you have gained competence in. Because, you now have to move on to new challenges. Once we pass through this process, we find that something has ‘softened’ and ‘melted’ inside us. This was resistance.
Embrace Change.
“The resistance that you fight physically in the gym and the resistance that you fight in life can only build a strong character.” – Arnold Schwarzenegger
Categories: Life Learnings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Life Is A Journey

Some days, we feel like we are simply going through meaningless chores. The humdrum routine of life. Nothing seems exciting.
This is your ‘Going through life’ phase. When you are most likely to end up experiencing fatigue and boredom.
Surely no one wants that.
But how do we break out of the rut. Can we just turn our perspective around? Flip the coin to that other side. Much more pleasant. All we need is the r-factor. To add the ‘r‘ and enrich ourselves.
It is called ‘Growing Through Life‘.
By Growing through life, we will find learning and excitement even in the routine.
So what will you be doing today?
Growing through life’ or keep ‘Going through life.’
“Life is a journey and it’s about growing and changing and coming to terms with who and what you are and loving who and what you are.” – Kelly McGillis
Growing Through Life 150918
Categories: Worldly Whorls | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tomorrow Is Another Day

There are many instances in life when one comes face to face with some facet of reality that could shatter you. The pain might create such a situation where one would find it hard to cope the future.

But life is not one big moment – life is several little things that, together make up the canvas of emotions and experiences. Life is also not about winning over obstacles and getting through the day (though many of us choose to believe that), but it is about how one navigates through difficulties.

In this human form, we are all here to learn a lesson or two. It would be foolish to believe that these lessons would come as a bouquet of roses. Rather, it is the thorns that would decidedly teach us a few things. Obstacles are small lessons and provide us with those instances of discomfort from where we should view the brighter side of life.

During these moments, it would be fruitful to remember,

  • The pain is not permanent. All will heal with time.
  • Worrying is no solution. It only gives you grey hair.
  • Others’ problems are not your responsibility. Clean your own plate before you take up someone else’s issues.
  • It is okay to cry. Crying releases stress. Bottling up emotions could lead you to depression.
  • You own your life. Believe in your freedom and never allow others to try and control your life.
  • Life is never simple. That itself is hard enough to understand. And here we are, trying to complicate matters even more.
  • Every cloud has a silver lining.

Man needs his difficulties because they are necessary to enjoy success.” – A. P. J. Abdul Kalam

Categories: Worldly Whorls | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Today I choose life

The mind is a search engine.

Our memories are the data bank that is being searched.

The words we input, return the memories associated with them. When you type in: depressedlonelyunhappy, etc., all those memories are retrieved and this is what you experience.

From today, choose what memories you want to recall. Then input those words in your ‘Search Engine’. Try words like “happypeacefulpowerful, etc”.

See the result for yourself.

Today I choose life. Every morning when I wake up I can choose joy, happiness, negativity, pain… To feel the freedom that comes from being able to continue to make mistakes and choices – today I choose to feel life, not to deny my humanity but embrace it.” – Kevyn Aucoin

Categories: Spiritual Spheres | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Be Flexible

Things that break easily tend to be rigid and hard. Therefore and to be unbreakable, we need to be flexible.

Circumstances change. Being flexible is about adjusting to such changes while keeping our goal in sight. This makes us unbreakable, and the journey easier.

It is also about resilience and sensitivity to things others say and do. Faith in ourselves. Confidence in our potential. Belief that there is benefit in everything that is happening.

Resilience is the super quality that can be best described by looking at people who have been knocked down by life and have returned stronger than before. Rather than letting failure overcome them, they find a way to rise.

Cultivate flexibility, build a positive attitude, promote optimism, manage emotions, and see failure as a tool to improve.

Stay committed to your decisions, but stay flexible in your approach.” – Tony Robbins

Categories: Life Learnings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fear Of Failure

The belief – ‘survival of the fittest,’ has been ingrained into our psyche since the earliest days of civilization. Repeatedly told that the world is competitive and only the ‘top notch’ can survive, we live comparing our successes apropos others. Competitiveness is explained as the possession of a strong desire to be more successful than others or the quality of being as good as or better than others of a comparable nature.

We live in perpetual fear of failure. Of threatened survival. Is it true that being an ‘always winner’ can bring genuine happiness? Can it even guarantee happiness? Is it not more likely that buying into this belief, might actually be ensuring unhappiness?

Ask anyone why they have not accomplished their goals yet, and fear of failure will always crop up as the number one reason to, most of the time. But, this has nothing to do with being born with low self-confidence. It has everything to do with fear of failure being a socially acceptable behaviour. What we really fear is failing to do something right the first time. Is it really reasonable to expect anyone to do ‘right the first time around’? No. People require several attempts and lots of practice to get things right at all. Yet we go on expecting ourselves to ‘do it right’ the first time.

Why are we in this situation? Right from school, we are trained that getting the ‘right’ answer the first time is the only thing that is rewarded, whereas the wrong answer is punished in a variety of ways: low grades, scolding and contempt from teachers and peers. By our late teens, we have been very effectively trained to fear failure. And most certainly not been taught to embrace failure as a key step in learning.

Most of us are still stuck with a big, ugly Fear of Failure staring us in the face whenever we try to break out of our current reality, go after big goals, or think about learning something new. Somewhere along the way, one has to de-learn the lesson to fear failure. Learn to go after what you want regardless of how often you might probably fail. Embrace failure as a part of getting what you want out of life.

The keys here will be –

Re-training your brain to go after new things. Take a class in something you’ve never done before. It doesn’t matter what it is. If you’ve never done it before, you are bound to fail the first few times you try it. This is a great way to relearn how to court failure, and then overcome it on your way to achievement.

Remind yourself that, fear of failure wasn’t always there for you. When you were a toddler, you had absolutely no fear of failure. If you were afraid to fail, you’d never have learned to walk! Somewhere inside who has absolutely zero fear of failure. That inside man wants to try to do everything. Access that brave little person once again, and you can achieve anything.

Choose to cultivate contentment, joy and bliss. Real, lasting happiness is about being who we really are and not something we have to strive for or can buy. Choose happiness now.

“Failure isn’t fatal, but failure to change might be” – John Wooden

Categories: Life Learnings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Hope: I think, I can!

‘Hope’ – a feeling of expectation and desire for a particular thing to happen.

Hope is an optimistic state of mind that is based on an expectation of positive outcomes with respect to events and circumstances in one’s life or the world at large. Amidst the constant changes in life and continually arising confusing, chaotic situations, Hope becomes our life jacket. Hope helps us to keep afloat in the storms that at times cause unexpected changes. Living with Hope keeps us awake. Hope opens us to the opportunities that life offers. We overcome fear and expect the best. We develop the vision that everything will get better and all things will themselves fall in line.

Hope helps us to keep the meaning of our life alive.

Barbara Fredrickson argues that hope comes into its own when crisis looms, opening us to new creative possibilities. That with great need comes an unusually wide range of ideas, as well as such positive emotions as happiness and joy, courage, and empowerment. Hopeful people are “like the little engine that could, [because] they keep telling themselves “I think I can, I think I can”. Such positive thinking bears fruit.

Hope has the ability to help people heal faster and easier. Individuals who maintain hope, especially when battling illness, significantly enhance their chances of recovery. This is important because people with chronic illness believe they have little chance of recovery. If health care providers begin to recognize the importance of hope in the recovery process, then they could learn to instill hope within their patients; thus enabling patients to develop healthy coping strategies. Shaping people’s beliefs and expectations to be more hopeful and optimistic is an essential component of positive psychology. In general, people who possess hope and think optimistically have a greater sense of well-being.

“Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.” – Desmond Tutu

Categories: Life Learnings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Being Bold

Do you remember what it was like to ride the bicycle with support wheels? The constant swaying. A little to the left and then resting on the little wheel, then off to the right. Lurching from one side to the other. Stopping and starting. Hiccups. All the way. Now, do you remember the exhilaration when, as a child, you could cycle without those aids! Free as a bird.

You can still do this. Every day. Facing all those daunting tasks and looking around for those small support wheels. You never needed them. And you don’t need them now. However challenging the situation may be. Even when the job at hand is totally new. It’s just learning to cycle again. Whatever obstacles are put in you path, whatever hurdles you come across. You don’t need those little support wheels. Ever again.

Pick yourself up. Remind that you did it before. You can do it again. Drag yourself out of your comfort zone.  Discard those feelings of discomfort. Those misgivings. The niggles of suspicion. Slay the ghosts of fear. Have faith.

Trust yourself and go for it; you will achieve. You will be surprised by your own force. Sitting in the comfort zone, you will stagnate.

“Being bold is being firm, sure, confident, fearless, daring, strong, resilient, and not easily intimidated. It means you’re willing to go where you’ve never been, willing to try what you’ve never tried, and willing to trust what you’ve never trusted.” – Mike Yaconelli

Being Bold 20171128

Categories: Life Learnings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.