Category Archives: Career

Outdated Education Systems

Today, I am thinking of all the education I received in my life and how much of it was truly “education”…. How much of it really helped me become a better person… a better human being…

It wasn’t all the history lessons in school…. neither were the chemistry formulas or equations… Neither was it the computer science lessons…..

My real education came from many of the failures I encountered in my life…. some of the learning also came from failed relationships and friendships….

The real education came when I realized that all relationships are superficial to some extent and the real true relationship is what you have with your own self!

I also learned when I saw beggars in New York and super duper rich people in many other parts of the world….

I learned through giving…. when I started donating some of my earnings towards a worthy cause… like children education etc.

I learned a whole lot from my daughter who is much younger than me…. I learned to be patient… to support…. I learned to be a parent…

I read a lot about God…. faith…. religion…. and learned that change is the only permanent thing in life! In times of crisis…. like a pandemic…. it’s not religion that will save you but rather science and medicine….

I also believe that prayers do make you stronger…. by generating faith in your mind.

The REAL REAL education came…. from health issues…. when I realized that we are NOTHING… ABSOLUTELY NOTHING…. without health….

I realized that the value of life is not learned by competing with one another but by living on your own terms…. and accepting the challenges that life has to offer….

I cherished the value of nature…. of Mother Earth…. of trees…plants….seeds…. greenery…

I learned that love need not be between two people who are married and just staying together…. but it can be between friends…. between a mother and a child…. between any two people….

I realized the value of food and that we should cherish every grain of food that we receive in our plate….

I also learned that money can give only a certain amount of happiness…. and there is absolutely NO USE in comparing one person’s financial status with another….

Kindness is very very important in life…

And while writing all this I feel our education systems need massive changes….

They need to emphasize the value of health…. and life… and time… and so many other valuable things…

Life is not just having a career…. it’s about living a LIFE…. It’s about being ready to face the ups and downs… Whether in career or in Life…

Let’s all try to teach our kids to LIVE… instead of to SUCCEED or to COMPETE!!

Let’s teach them to ENJOY LIFE….

Let’s teach them to CHERISH LIFE…

These are my 2 cents! 🙂

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Do you manage time or does time manage you?

I read a beautiful quote recently – “If you don’t take control of time, time will start taking control of you”.

The importance of this quote can not be elaborated in words, but it’s something that can be experienced by everyone.

For a long time, I was trying to manage my time well. It’s something I had been wanting to do.
I wanted to have time for my family, my work, my hobbies, my goals and my learning. I used many apps available on the latest gadgets (phone, laptop etc etc) but nothing was working too well.

I then googled an article one day, “how do CEOs manage their time!?” . Ofcourse, the main answer that popped up was, ‘They all have PAs (Personal Assistants)’ but I also learned about this new Android app – Wunderlist in one of the articles. I must tell you it’s a pretty cool app.

It lets you create to do lists, set reminders, due dates, sort the tasks and a lot more. 

As we grow, our to do lists also start growing and getting bigger. However, our minds process information in the same way – logically. Our brains were not created to store vast amounts of information, but to process information in real time.

Hence, the fact that we have 100 tasks on our list should not intimidate us. We have to do just one task at a time and be done with it. The important question is : “Which task should be done when?”

A lot of people do not like deadlines. They prefer working as per their own schedules. I am also not a big fan of strict deadlines, but I do like to set personal deadlines by giving me enough time to analyze and learn. And recently, with my time management app, I think I’ve gotten better at it.

I now like the feeling of checking off tasks from my to do list and what encouraged me to do so, was the reminders feature on my phone app. We tend to ignore or forget some minor tasks in life, but they keep popping every few weeks or in a few months. Setting reminders helped me not ignore those tasks and check them off sooner.

Life is beautiful and offers so much to learn. We can miss out on a lot of things, if we don’t manage our time well.

Analyze what works best for you – what makes you check off tasks from your To do list. These are personal preferences and choices. The main learning here is that we manage time and do not let time manage us.

And in between all this, don’t forget to enjoy!

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Believing you are busy and actually being busy!

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Everyone’s so busy these days! They have something or the other on their list all the time. As a result, there is no time for family or friends or fun….or life.

Next time, when you say “I’m busy”, think:
“Are you really busy?”
“Are you pretending to be busy?”
“Are you having the belief that you are busy?”

 The third point is a little tricky. You believe you’re busy, when you feel you have so many things left to do! ‘So many’ could refer to 10 things or it could even be 100 things. The exact figure could very well also be a belief.

This belief adds to a lot of confusion and bad time management. Everything in life needs to have a priority and a deadline.

When I was unmarried, I was not really a ‘To do List’ type of person. But, after getting married and also being in a full time job, I really need a ‘To Do’ List. In fact, I just make too many lists!

I realized today that because of all those lists, I was under the belief that I’m extremely busy. No doubt, I am busy but it’s not unmanageable. It can be handled with some level of organization. What I really needed was a little bit of organization for those ‘To do’ Lists.

We live one day at a time. Days are split up into hours. Every task has a deadline – a certain day… a certain hour (formal or informal).

Deadlines are sometimes scary but if they are considered as milestones, they are not so scary.

Time management is difficult if we keep switching from one task to another. I remember reading an article about multitasking and how it gives the illusion that a lot of tasks are getting done, whereas, none of the tasks may actually be getting completed.

When we are able to do a task and check-mark it as completed, that’s when it holds some value. Per my analysis, if we are able to complete at least 3-5 tasks in a day, we are doing a good job. (Tasks- here, refer to those that require some level of analytical thinking)

It’s important to know the difference between a belief and a reality because beliefs drive our realities. If we believe the right thing, we can find time to do the right thing.

Next time when you believe you are busy, make a list of the things on your plate and when you’re supposed to submit them. Maybe then, you’ll be able to make time for other things or maybe then, you’ll actually have time for other things.

Career or Success?

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It may sound ironic but it’s true – “Your career need not be the key to your success.”

Career is something we choose to pursue, in order to earn a living. People who are able to get into their ‘dream careers’ are lucky, but the ratio is very less.

Career decisions may be influenced by circumstances, family pressure, social standing, academic grades and several other things. For some, career is not a choice but a responsibility. People may or may not get successful in what they pursue as a career.

However, it’s important to understand that success may not always be driven out of your career choices.

Success is a state of mind – It can have many definitions – Being popular, being wealthy, getting liked by everyone, being content, being healthy or being able to fulfill the needs of the family and so on.

A lot of people pursue side businesses (besides their main careers) and become more successful in them. Many people get lucky in winning lotteries and consider that as success.

If a person is in a particular job role, should he stop looking at other avenues of being successful? For example – pursuing a hobby, starting a side business, doing charity work etc.

Doesn’t this imply that we all should be flexible to take up different roles and see what makes us most content and most successful?

I am always impressed by people who are multi-talented. For example – They may be engineers but pursuing a cooking course alongside. Isn’t it amazing to see how flexible they are with life and the possibilities it offers?

Before trying various options, it is important to define what success means to you and how important are the roles besides your main career stream.

Keep your eyes and ears open and look out for your dream role! – A hobby, a passion! – Plan to pursue it. You may have to plan your finances and time accordingly. But, we have only one life – it’s now or never! Do what you like and see if you want to keep doing it…!

Be flexible, be energetic, spread enthusiasm and inspire people! Be successful in what you choose to be ‘success’ for you!!

And just when I was writing this article, one of my colleagues came to my desk and told me about all the work she has been doing besides her main job. She takes writing classes, song writing classes, travels for conferences and a lot more! Wow!
I told her, that her words are an inspiration for me and many others as well.

Success is not necessarily driven out of your career!

If you don’t get what you want…..

If you don’t get what you want….it’s quite possible you may not want what you get.

Here’s a small example – When you go to the market to buy a table cloth but buy a table runner instead, since the table cloth was not available, it is quite possible you may not ‘want’ the table runner later down the line.

Similarly, in life, if you don’t get what you want… you may later not ‘want’ what you get. That is why it becomes so essential to know what you want and then get it.

Once you are sure of your wants, goals, desires and are certain about them, you settle for nothing less.

Imagine at the end of life, if someone asks you, “Did you get all/most of what you wanted from life?” , what will be your answer? What will be your answer to this question today?

Clarity of thought is very essential as it defines your goals, your path in life. If you are unsure of what you want, you can very easily oscillate towards something else.

How many people in this world actually pursue the career they want to pursue? How many people follow their passion?
They may still be happy and wealthy with what ever they have, but is it what they really wanted?

I read recently that ‘Instead of focusing on your to do list, focus on your to be list’. What do you ‘want’ to be?

Once you are sure, pursue it so hard that you do not settle for anything less.

If YOU don’t get what you want, YOU may not want what you get. Create your life.

Don’t Procrastinate….. Contemplate…

How many times have you thought of going to the gym but could not find the time?

How many times did you start reading a book but never finished it?

How many times did you think of learning a new language or following a new hobby but then got busy?

Don’t procrastinate…Contemplate.

Isn’t it strange that we delay some things in life, even though we know for sure, they are good for us. We want to do a task and we plan to do it but then it never happens.

In reality, whenever we procrastinate, there is a reason behind it. There is something stopping us from doing that work. If we dive deeper, we can realize and be sure of what it is. A lot of times its laziness, sometimes it’s fear and other times it’s ignorance.

When ever you make a plan and then do not execute it, think – Why wasn’t I able to complete the task?
Is it because ‘I am incapable of doing it?’ – Most of the times, the answer will be no.
Is it because I am lazy – A lot of times the answer may be Yes.
Is it because its not in my priority list? – This is a tough one!

Do not free yourself or jump to another task until and unless you convince yourself and get the answer to ‘Why you are delaying a task?’

You will be amazed to see, how many of your weaknesses come in front of u. You will be amazed of the opportunities you will discover to improve yourself and get more out of life and out of your plans.

Next time when you say, “Oh! I will get to it someday” or may be, “I’ll do it tomorrow”, think of a reason why you will do it tomorrow and not today?

Most of the time, we only complete the tasks that we are supposed to. But, Life is not a task. Life is an exploration, a discovery. The day we can do more tasks that we think we can, we will be actually exploring possibilities.

The day we can plan and execute our day better, we can help others execute their days better.

Don’t procrastinate – Contemplate.

Competition…!

Many times, I see people competing with each other. They want to show that they are better than the others. Some people even try to use cunning ways or tricks to prove that they are much better.

I read recently,”The trouble with the rat race is that even if you win, you’re still a rat.”

Why do we need to be part of a rat race? We should be able to define our goals and our own race.

A person’s race should only be with himself. He should compare, what he is today to what he was yesterday.
It’s not rare that a person was happy yesterday and he is still happy today, in spite of unwanted circumstances in his life.

Here’s a story: Two colleagues A & B were always competing with one another. They tried to put each other down in meetings. They felt the other person was not capable enough. One day, A went to a third colleague C and said… “Don’t listen to B. He always competes”

C said, “I don’t understand how he can affect me?” C knew what he was doing. C’s goals were related to C’s life, not to A’s or B’s life 🙂

We always meet people who want to compete with us and prove themselves better. We can’t do much about it except smile.

When we start competing, we either win or lose.

In the worst case scenario, let’s say you compete and ‘lose’ a game/challenge/battle because of another person. Let’s say you even lose your job, your career, your friends because of another person….If you are capable… you can get your job and career back! It may not be as good as the old job but it’s an opportunity, a fresh start!

If you have true friends… they will be back!

What can someone possibly take away from you? Can he take away your intelligence, your power of judgement, your patience, your knowledge, your beliefs, your reason of existence?

“Anything that does not kill you makes you stronger.” – Life is full of opportunities. Life wants us to rise.

Compete, with yourself and your knowledge. Competing with others will not take you anywhere. It will only take away your time and fill negative thoughts in your mind.

I believe healthy competition is always with your own self. Any competition with others in unhealthy because that kind of competition runs in your mind. It becomes the focus of all your work. Your own goals take a backseat and the other person’s achievements take the front seat! 🙂

Learn from others, but don’t compete with them.

You win because you are better than what you were yesterday. You lose because you have scope for improvement. (Not because another person is better)

Live your life, your goals and your targets. Do not live someone else’s goals.

Compete with yourself, in your favorite areas and try to win…. everyday!

Comparison…

What makes me better? What makes me best?
Am I any different from all the rest?
Who takes this decision? Who can judge us all?
How big is he?…or is he too small?
Encourage me so I can do better tomorrow
Every other comparison, fills me with sorrow
Let me do, what, I can do best
Why are you competing, this is not a test
today we may be good, but tomorrow’s yet to come
differences don’t matter, what matters is the sum
Jump into the ocean, swim against the flow
But we will remain “droplets”, where ever we go….