How to change habits by giving up the harmful and developing the desirable ones?

Sometime ago, we had a very useful discussion regarding managing CHANGE in life. The subject was how to inculcate good habits and how to ward off, the bad ones. Each participant was advised to identify 10 good habits of their friends, colleagues or of family members which each wanted to imbibe in their own personality.
At the same time they were also asked to identify 5 bad habits of their own which each wanted to give up. Besides, what efforts have been made so far to give up the bad habits were also to be explained? Since it was a Speech Training Session, the participants were supposed to detail clearly each point with examples.  These examples could be chosen from their own lives or those of others known to them. A heartwarming open and interesting discussion led to a number of conclusions.
First of all it’s necessary to understand how habits work. A habit is a kind of repetitive behavior for which you don’t think. You don’t have to apply your mind to check up anything before you take action. Let’s examine with some examples. If you wake up at a particular time, you don’t need any alarm to remind you. Taking bath and getting ready is also done as a matter of habit. If you were to check the time you take for getting ready everyday it will be more or less the same.  Taking your breakfast fast is also a habit which need consistent efforts to bring about the desired change.

Does it mean that we cannot change our habit/habits which we want to change? No, it doesn’t. We certainly can with required will and efforts. However some habits can be changed by one’s own efforts, whereas some others require professional help. But in both the situations one needs to adopt a systematic approach. First of all we must state clearly what new habit we want to adopt. It’s always better to write in your journal in clear terms. For example, if you have wanted to go for a morning walk but habitually you get up late, you can change this habit. After writing in your journal about your decision to start doing for a morning walk regularly you must fix up the date for starting. The first few days you may have to use the alarm which will wake you up at a particular time. It’s necessary not to laze around after the alarm. Just get ready and go for a walk. It is said that it is normally take 21 days to form a habit.
Now I give another example. If you suffer from stage fright and you cannot speak to a group by standing up, you need a professional help. You also require a firm determination that you will overcome the stage fright because it is impeding your progress. Further, you must carefully select the professional. It is like going to the right doctor for getting the ailment eliminated. With appropriate efforts and continuous practice one can definitely overcome the bane of stage fright. In today’s environment, it is necessary. In colleges you have to give presentations, and wherever you work, once you are in a senior position, you need to give presentations to your bosses.

Even if you are an entrepreneur and doing your own business, you need to motivate your staff and for this also you need great confidence. Besides, you must not have any fear of facing the people from the stage.

 Five Ways to Break 10 Bad Habits


Nearly everyone has a bad habit that they should break. Some people have less than others and some people’s bad habits are more grating than those of others.  Bad habits like excessive drinking, smoking, biting the fingernails, etc., starts slowly and gradually. They jeopardise your health — both physically and mentally thereby wasting your time and energy.
Bad habits are hard to give up, they are like a comfortable bed, easy to get into, but hard to get out off.  However, you can achieve anything with the right amount of willpower and a realistic plan of action. With persistence and right mind-sets, it’s possible to break your bad habits.


Here are some ideas for breaking your bad habits


1. Change one thing at a time
It is most important that you don’t try to break all your bad habits, at once. You’re not a superhuman and trying to quit all your bad habits at the same time is probably going to be hard to achieve. Instead, prioritise and choose the habit that you need to change most urgently and then focus on that accordingly.
2. Prepare for weak moments
A positive mindset is significant but if you’re not prepared for those weak moments this can be a biggest mistake. Try to remove temptations as that can help you prepare for those weak moments. For instance, clear the cupboards of junk food, keep some distance from friends who encourage you to smoke/ drink and avoid stressful situations.
3. Set regular reminders
Bad habits are often so deeply ingrained in us that sometimes they can catch us unexpectedly. To help prevent those accidental slip-ups, try setting yourself regular reminders to resist those bag habits.
4. Reward your success
The key to breaking bad habits is to make the process as rewarding and enjoyable, as possible. If you are facing difficulty focusing on the long-term benefits of breaking bad habits, then arrange small rewards for yourself as you go along to help keep you motivated.


5. Remind yourself why you’re breaking those habits
In order to successfully break a bad habit, you have to be sure of your reason for breaking those habits. Find a solid reason for breaking your habit that really means something to you – such as improving your health, relationship or appearance – and keep your goal in sight. This will help you to carry on and stay strong in moments of weakness.

Power of Good Habits!!

As described above, habit is a routine of behavior that is repeated frequently, and tends to occur unconsciously. Bad habits intrude your life and prevent you from accomplishing your goals.  Breaking any habit can be difficult. For instance, if a person smokes regularly, it becomes his habit and even if he wants to quit, it becomes difficult for him to give-up.
Psychologist and philosopher William James proclaimed that the entire life is nothing but a series of habits that we form repeatedly. The power of habit has been explained by various authors, world leaders and motivational speakers.  One of the famous Authors, Stephen R. Covey, wrote a book titled “The 7 Habits of successful People” describing an approach to being effective in realizing your goals.
One can create excellence in big things, by developing good habits even in small matters. Keeping the desk clean, using mobile with discretion, removing the clutter from your mind, etc. All these  can be practiced again and again easily. When you instill these habits into your life, you create the foundation for achieving your goals.
Here are 8 Habits of highly productive people that you may adopt to get the best out of you!!

1. Ruthlessly cut away the unimportant

That’s right. Try to focus only on the important things, and cut away everything that’s unimportant. There is no point doing something that is not needed for the desired results. So push yourself to quit wasting time, and bring yourself back to the production mode.

2. Allocate breaks strategically

Productivity declines over time without taking brakes. Take many small breaks during the day. The rule of thumb would be to take a 5 to 10 minutes break every 2 hours of work. Breaks are a highly effective way to boosting your productivity.

3. Remove productivity pitfalls

Things that limit your productivity must be thrown out.  It can be the loud music you listen to when you work, your phone calls, alerts from your inbox, your slow computer, the internet, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, etc. These things trap you and prevent you from getting things done.

4. Tap into your inspiration

No matter what field you’re in, your inspiration is the key to your output. So, channel your inner muse. Keep on thinking and contemplating the things that motivates you. And definitely you will find that your focus increases thereby up surging your productivity.

5. Create barriers to entry

Don’t make yourself too accessible. If you’re too accessible, then you will face a lot of interruptions. Nowadays, people can connect with others very easily- with the touch of button (text, emails, calls, etc.). Therefore, guard your time to improve your productivity.

6. Optimise time pockets

Make the best of every minute. For instance, if you’re working for 10 minutes, ensure that you achieve maximum outcomes in those 10 minutes and then you can take time off.  You usually get time pockets while waiting for people, commuting, chess app, reading books, or planning.

7. Set timelines

Be clear on what you want to achieve, and then set your timelines for them. When you set timelines, you commit to yourself to complete the work on time, hence, paving the way for the reality to manifest.

8. Automate everything possible

Technology today has made automation possible for a lot of things we do.  Hence, find a way to automate every task and let it be your habit. If you outsource, delegate. Delegation and automation wherever possible will enhance your productivity.
By no means, this is a complete list. But as you focus on improving productivity by adopting good habits you will be inspired to adopt more such habits which are particularly useful to you.
Thanks for reading. 

Two Short poem

Poems for Peak Personality!

Concentration

Concentration is a way of life;
affects every action and your strife.
Sane habits that show,
distractions don’t grow.
Energizing your mind making calm and clear,
empowers you to work without fear.
When you think of only objective,
mental processes become active.
Nothing else you think or see,
Your mind moves in glee and you’re free.

Razor’s Edge

One doesn’t have
to be scared
to walk on the razor’s edge.
Instead, develop a skill
and confidence that will instill,
To cope up with dangers of life
Empowering you for the constant strife.
That life is made of not in vain,
you conquer complexities without any pain
And if for unexpected eventualities
You couldn’t care less
Sooner or later
You will land in a
Deep, deep mess!

Modern Lifestyle; Thy name is Stress!


In today’s world, one cannot perform traditional work at a modern pace. Traditional work has traditional rhythm for which you need to be calm. You may be busy, but you must remain calm which sometimes might not be possible in present environment. It is often assumed that having more money eases the path through life, but sometimes it also brings added complications. Proper Plan is always required to make more money in order to lead a modern lifestyle. You may wish to acquire clothes or things that are more expensive simply to show off, trying to create a big impression. Conversely, the style depends on, what you do with these things. Thus, Fashion is what you buy, while style is what you do with it.
The modern lifestyle with its many fascinations, distractions and temptations can offer us several things, but the meekest of all goals – your inner peace – seems the one illusive thing beyond your reach. In fact, Modern lifestyle can destroy your peace. If not destruction it can disturb your peace. So do not ever let your lavish lifestyle steal your peace.
The economic anarchy of capitalist society and its impact on Indian mind and ethos are one of the key factors that lead to stress. When you sturdily desire to have something which is difficult to acquire, then obviously you’re under stress. Modern lifestyle requires position which in turn requires money, your extra effort or corruption or anything that is unworthy.  Apart from the pressure of modern life, your stress level will also differ based on your personality, attitude, habits and risk factors. Expecting things to be easy that are normally not so – can further lead to stress which in turn requires you to change your habits and attitude which is difficult, but not impossible.
Since the consequences of traumatic and chronic stress are serious, it is vital to find out ways to mitigate stress. These kinds of stress cannot be completely removed but can definitely be kept under control. The first step in managing stress is identifying the cause. Then it is necessary to contemplate on your values. Your values tend to give you a direction, to deviate your mind from unnecessary material acquisitions and positions.
Meditation is undoubtedly one of the best stress management techniques known, since ancient times. Sit in a relaxed cross-legged fashion, try to control your mind and affirm that your life is in significance. And that implication will not allow you to feel jealous and envious of people and their positions. Avoid developing grudge on people who are leading an affluent life with a luxury car, bigger house, etc. It doesn’t mean that you should kill all your desires. Rather, have a clear goal, strive hard to achieve it, concentrate and then contemplate it.
The only person you should try to compete with – is the person you were yesterday. Give up comparing yourself with others. Don’t change to be better than those around you. Instead, change yourself into a better person. Review everyday whether you are reaching towards your goal or not.  Achieving specific goals requires focus, approach and continues efforts. Perseverance is another vital aspect of life for which you require strong willpower and courage.  Take risks as this may lead to change in your attitude and make you stronger, courageous thereby mitigating your stress to a large extent.
Thanks for reading.

Five Ways to Break 10 Bad Habits

1
Bad Habits
Nearly everyone has a bad habit that they should break. Some people have less than others and some people’s bad habits are more grating than those of others.  Bad habits like excessive drinking, smoking, biting the fingernails, etc., starts slowly and gradually. They jeopardize your health — both physically and mentally thereby wasting your time and energy.
Bad habits are hard to give up, they are like a comfortable bed, easy to get into, but hard to get out off.  However, you can achieve anything with the right amount of willpower and a realistic plan of action. With persistence and right mind-sets, it’s possible to break your bad habits.
Here are some ideas for breaking your bad habits
1. Change one thing at a time
It is most important that you don’t try to break all your bad habits, at once. You’re not a superhuman and trying to quit all your bad habits at the same time is probably going to be hard to achieve. Instead, prioritize and choose the habit that you need to change most urgently and then focus on that accordingly.
2. Prepare for weak moments
A positive mindset is significant but if you’re not prepared for those weak moments this can be a biggest mistake. Try to remove temptations as that can help you prepare for those weak moments. For instance, clear the cupboards of junk food, keep some distance from friends who encourage you to smoke/ drink and avoid stressful situations.
3. Set regular reminders
Bad habits are often so deeply ingrained in us that sometimes they can catch us unexpectedly. To help prevent those accidental slip-ups, try setting yourself regular reminders to resist those bag habits.
4. Reward your success
The key to breaking bad habits is to make the process as rewarding and enjoyable, as possible. If you are facing difficulty focusing on the long-term benefits of breaking bad habits, then arrange small rewards for yourself as you go along to help keep you motivated.
5. Remind yourself why you’re breaking those habits
In order to successfully break a bad habit, you have to be sure of your reason for breaking those habits. Find a solid reason for breaking your habit that really means something to you – such as improving your health, relationship or appearance – and keep your goal in sight. This will help you to carry on and stay strong in moments of weakness.
10 habits you must quit to be happy
When you quit doing the bad things, you make more room for the things that make you happy. Aristotle, a great philosopher once said, “we are what we repeatedly do. Excellence is not an act, but a habit”. However, here are 10 habits that you need to give up in exchange for your happiness.

  • Quit procrastinating on your goals
  • Quit talking down to yourself
  • Quit blaming others and making excuses
  • Quit trying to control the uncontrollable
  • Quit criticizing others
  • Quit trying to avoid change
  • Quit running from your problems and fears
  • Quit trying to be someone you’re not
  • Quit living in another time and place
  • Quit being ungrateful

Thanks for reading.

Three reasons why Blame Game is the worst!

blame-game
Scenario 1:
1) An employee couldn’t submit the annual report on time. On enquiring he blamed the delay in work to the team’s noncooperation.
Many other commonplace scenarios occur in everyone’s life. And these are what we call as blame game.
So what exactly it means? Well, blaming others’ or situations for one’s own failures.  This generally happens when one is not ready to take up responsibility of one’s failure because of ego or fear of criticism. Blame game means the activity by which one tries to identify the person or situation that can be made a scapegoat. In the above mentioned example the employee comfortably blamed the teammates for not co-operating with him. Sometimes the reasons are true but in most cases these are mere excuses one produces for hiding what one is incapable of doing. This makes them unsuccessful and then it becomes a habit.
Yes! Blame Game can become a habit if not consciously uprooted from one’s life!
And what does blame game indicate? The blame game is the game of timid. It comes easily to those who do not have courage to face life. Life poses several questions at various times. The people who are afraid of failures are the people who try to escape by blaming others. Life is two sided coin. It comes with the successful moments as well as failures. World hasn’t witnessed a person who hasn’t seen and experienced both. Then why to fear failure?
Winston Churchill once said,” Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm”!
Blame game is the worst played game which comes due to the following reasons:
1) Lack of courage: People who lack courage fear to face failures. They don’t want to take charge of something that they failed in. They want to shrug off the responsibility of failure and thus, they find an excuse for the failure. They blame the circumstances, the situations and many times other people who are involved in the project with them.
As the saying goes, “An inefficient workman always blames his tools”!
These gamers find excuses which would make them less responsible of the failure.
Certainly, the example quoted above is that of a blame game instead of an excuse. If people were not co-operating the employee could have arranged for a meet to discuss the issues!
People with courage often stand up for their failures. They analyze what went wrong in their efforts and if at all it is their mistake they accept it wholeheartedly. They are bold enough to accept their mistakes and learn from those for future projects. They firmly believe in the philosophy that “ In order to succeed in life you must first be willing to experience failure”!
2) Lack of Discipline: “The more disciplined you become, the easier life gets”!
Discipline is a must to succeed in life. If one doesn’t possess this virtue, he tends to play blame game when he fails. When one starts a project or a task one should be good at estimating the time it will take to complete the project. One needs lot of persistent efforts to finish the work in particular time.
Indiscipline interferes with the persistency of efforts and causes missing links which may not be connected again or may take longer to connect. This leads to loose ends and yes failure! One has to inculcate the habit of discipline in order to stop the worst game of blame game.
Discipline after all is knowing what needs to be done and doing the same when you actually don’t want to do it!
3) Procrastination: “Procrastination is like a credit card- It is fun until you get the bill”
And the price of procrastination is quite huge. Don’t put it off to tomorrow what you can do it today. People who like to blame others and situations for their failure are the ones who procrastinate the most. The tendency to avoid difficult work is the one which leads to procrastination of work. One needs to apply mind to difficult tasks at hand. One needs to manage time well, by prioritizing the activities one has. “Project prioritization matrix- Eisenhower matrix “ is a tool which can help anyone keep the track of importance of any activity based on its urgency. Once an activity gets delayed one may get entangled with other routine activity or countering an urgent task.
These are some of the reasons why one takes the rescue of blame game. One needs to change oneself and inculcate power of good habits. Habits change when one continuously works on them. It takes time but the self esteem it builds is totally worth it.
Thanks for reading.

Introduction to the forthcoming Self-help Book: ‘PowerPacked Personality’

q1
Yes! Indeed, once you start working or even before that the race begins and you keep wondering “What made me lose and the other one win, the same race?” You question yourself amidst the darkest deep nights but get no answer. And finally you create one. You blame your destiny. This is the only way to find comfort.
One often becomes uncomfortable when one thinks about the failures one had. No one likes to own the responsibility especially of the failed endeavor. One tends to forget these unhappy monologues; thanks to the mundane activities of life.
But these monologues if dug deeper, have the power to take us closer to the real answers we seek. This book is aimed at giving you an insight into your life, its challenges and the answers you desperately want to find out. If the principles propounded are followed in true spirit, life will be no longer an irritating jigsaw puzzle but an enjoyable and successful journey.
Though comparison is odious, yet at a certain stage of life, one tends to compare oneself with others. It is indeed a natural tendency to measure one’s success, joy or happiness. And then the person confronts a battery of questions like: “Why am I not rich like him? Though we studied together and were best friends? Once close buddies, why am I shy of even reaching out to him? How come he/she has achieved what I could just not think of? What makes her so very desirable?
In short, one tends to become jealous of others’ success. Jealousy, certainly, is best avoided but if dealt properly could give us the desired drive that will take us to our desired destination, our sought after goals. Success, prosperity, peace of mind and happiness just follow.
This book will help you understand yourself, leverage all natural human emotions through simple step-by-step forward movement. Simplicity of understanding and ease to follow practices and procedures are the principal features of this book.
The book will work as a reference manual describing how to handle difficult situations. It could work as a catalyst to bring out of the shell and make your existence as lively and as colorful as that of a butterfly.
Further, the book addresses the other personality issues that keep you away from achieving the success you always dreamt. It shows the path towards improvement and elevates your self-confidence to an untapped level. The book throws light on most of the important skill set and behavioral traits which successful people possess as listed below:
1) Positive Attitude: “A negative attitude is like a flat tyre! If you don’t change it, you will never reach anywhere!” Attitude defines the major part of your personality. It makes you who you are. It is the way you respond to what you face in life. Thus, a positive person seeks opportunities in the challenges they encounter whereas a negative person finds faults with the situations or the people.
This book will help you identify your attitude and help you learn the ways to correct the flaws adopting certain simple procedures to be followed consistently.
2) Effective Communication: Today’s world is a shrunken world. Globalization has brought us closer. Good Communications has become more important than ever before. Both, verbal and written communication skills are critical to understand others and to express yourself effectively. This book is your guide to develop these skills. Simple exercises easy to follow offer you powerful technique to improve on these. There is no limit to improvement.
3) Interpersonal skills: We continuously interact with the family, colleagues, friends and society. We have to work with those around and maintain harmonious relations. Good interpersonal skills are, therefore, crucial to our success and happiness. Through this book we take you through the various methods which would help you imbibe the necessary interpersonal skills.
4) Continuous Improvement: Stagnation doesn’t breed success! Today’s fast changing world demands dynamic people who keep abreast of latest information and the changing advanced technology. Successful people have a quest to explore more, learn more and thereby, pursue excellence. But one can’t be directionless in exploration.
This book provides you a direction. It can act as a personal guide so that you know what are you heading towards.
5) Willpower: Willpower is the strongest virtue which successful people possess and which helps them achieve distinguished success. It is the ability to perform consistently under the testing times and the ability to withstand the difficulties. Willpower, alone, often defines one’s success. This book sheds light on the way to focus your physical, mental and intellectual energies and to build strong willpower. Success, then, is just a few steps away with strong willpower.
6) Habits: Power of good habits are vitals to success. The book intends to inculcate all the basic formal good habits like humility, understanding, empathy for others. It will also help you develop a sense of humor which is a rare trait these days. This book will enable you to be the best of yourself.
7) Time management:- Time and Tide wait for none. This might sound a cliche but it is the hardcore truth. One needs to effectively manage this very resource which is equally distributed to everyone on this planet. This book will hold your hands and guide you to use time in the best possible manner.
How does one use this book?
Well, before using this book one needs to have undergone a self analysis. An analysis helps in the long way to identify one’s strengths and weaknesses. One needs to retrospect about the successful times and identify what contributed to those magnanimous events. Was it your sheer talent, initiative or a group effort? Once you get answers to this question, ask yourself again whether you still use those elements in your endeavors? If you encounter a negative answer, ask yourself again “Why not?”After all history repeats itself.
It is equally important to ponder over the failures of life as it is to dwell over success. Failures are the major lessons to be learnt in life. Ask yourself, –
“When did I fail and Why?”
“Is it because of my shortcomings?”
If the answer is yes, note down the shortcomings and counter them with the methods in this book.
This book can be used as a reference material for developing a desirable and successful personality once you have done with the self questionnaire presented above. Happy personality development ahead!

5 habits which don’t allow you gain financial freedom

habits
Everyone wants to gain financial freedom- free from worry of providing finance resource when you stop earning. This is particularly so if you are a working professional. Today, we have examples of financial wizards who have grown to riches starting at the bottom of the ladder. But here we talk about much lesser achievement- just to gain financial freedom. So what is holding you back? There are five major reasons. These are:

  1. Fear
  2. Cynicism
  3. Laziness
  4. Poor habits
  5. Arrogance

1. Fear: What is fear? Why does it come? What are the problems that it may create? These are a few of many questions one may ask to understand the affliction and its implications. These may differ from person to person. But the ultimate problem the fear causes is the same. Fear doesn’t allow you to grow. In fact, it makes your life miserable.
2. The second in my list is Cynicism. A cynic is always skeptical of things other than mathematics. The doubtful nature of the cynic doesn’t allow to trust anyone. What if is the perennial problem the cynic faces? With negative, jaundiced view, a cynic becomes a pessimist. She/he is unable to see the brighter side of things. They become color blind and cannot differentiate the various colors of human life. They say that there is light at the end of the tunnel. But for the cynic the tunnel becomes endless. In these circumstances who can progress in any field. They hold back and blame everyone around for this failure.
3. The third the list is When you don’t feel like working, when your indolence doesn’t allow you to get out of the bed, you are too lazy to think solution of even a minor problem. You know what is to be done. You know how it is to be done. But your sluggishness holds you back. You tend to procrastinate. It is often observed that if you delay action, the significance of the action is lost. Who lose out? You. And why? Only because of laziness. The remedy is discipline. Discipline beats laziness. Simple definition of discipline is doing something which needs to be done even when you don’t like.
4. Next point on my list of reasons of failure is “Poor habits”. Good habits are hard to cultivate, but poor habits come uninvited. And then, like the undesirable guests, they occupy the most of your mind. What are these poor habits? You don’t live up to the need of the situation; when you remain deficient in any action that you take. You do nothing about your inadequacies. You get to know that your performance is below average, yet you do nothing about it. You accept below par action as enough. These don’t provoke you to do any better in spite of the rebuff of your superiors; lack of respect of your time and that of others is another unpardonable habit.
5. And finally, it is Arrogance. Arrogance is equal to Ego plus Ignorance. When you think you know all, you feel, that to know what you don’t know is not important, therefore, can be ignored. Arrogance doesn’t allow you to listen. God has endowed every human with two ears, but only one mouth. I would say that we should listen twice as much as we speak. But arrogance will not allow you to listen and understand others. Therefore, you don’t allow others to speak. Your high headedness breeds more enemies than friends. And you stand to lose everywhere. The aforesaid five problems need to be addressed by everyone who wants to progress.
Your success depends on the following three activities:

  1. Your eye on cash flow
  2. How you manage people
  3. And, how you manage your time

But the above 5 snares will not allow you to perform anyone of above three activities even satisfactorily, much less effectively.
Thanks for reading.

Habits Die Hard

Habits die hard is commonly known. But forming new habits is equally hard. In the fast changing world that we are in today, we need ‘change’ more than anything else. Change in attitude and change in habits need to be priorities. Someone told me that if you do something at the same time daily, it becomes your habit. I have motivated some of my students, but the results are far from satisfactory. To form a new habit or to ward of the old one needs the following:

                                i.            Develop a strong desire to bring in the change.

                              ii.            Set a valid reminder system.

                            iii.            Define the milestones and the timeline.