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!
Let’s examine four possible combinations of speaking & listening. This will enable us to understand what communication can do to our lives and to our organizations.
Possibility 1. Effective speaking but poor listening. If this is the leader’s characteristics the results could be as under:
It will increase your focus. You may have generated good followers & good soldiers. But the potential leaders will leave. There will be practically no innovation. Stress level will increase.
Possibility 2. Effective speaking and active listening. That is the perfect combination for the leader. The focus of the leader and of the organization will remain in the forefront. Things will happen fast. Loyalty of employees will increase. Appreciation of mind and ability to enjoy the work will bring in more breakthroughs, more innovations. People will collaborate with each other and also compete with each other. The best will blossom with the leader’s effective speech and active listening. An atmosphere of sustainable leadership will prevail.
Possibility 3: Poor speaking but active listening. It will amount to lack of focus. Also, waste of time & money. There will be thrust on management by committees. People might get an impression that anything goes.
Meanwhile active listening will also result in the positives. The employees will become more self-expressed. Application of mind by them will increase. There would be greater innovation.
Possibility 4: Poor speaking and poor listening. It will be nothing but a slow death of the enterprise. The death of textile mills in Mumbai & Ahmadabad can be attributed to this syndrome. Misunderstanding and conflicts will rule. Opportunities will be missed. There would be high rate of attrition. Isolation will result in fragmentation, and finally extinction.
Just perusing the above possibilities would shake our slumber. Importance of communication will then be fully realized. So, I will deal with both aspect of communication- good speaking and good listening.
First of all it is necessary to have strong content. Content is the king. Effective communications take this into account more than any other aspect of management or even life. Content means domain knowledge. You can’t fool people with shallow thoughts. Much less you can impress them. Lot of hard work goes into acquiring knowledge. The biggest problem is seen when you have worthwhile knowledge but you can’t use into your advantage due to lack of effective speech. Your expression remains impaired. People would barely know that you are a storehouse of useful information.
Then what should you do? Become a good speaker. Practice the art and science of speaking clearly, confidently and convincingly.
How do you speak clearly? You must understand that speech in the result of decision to communicate. First thinking clarifies the idea you want to project to the listener or a group of listeners. Then brain sends a signal to the lungs and some breath is released. Breath strikes the vocal cord to produce sound. But the words are created by the speech organs. So in order to speak clearly, think clearly. Cultivate habit of deep breathing. It enables to have sufficient breath to support strength of your voice. This will also enable you to speak longer sentence without breathing in between. The flow of speech will enable ideas to flow smoothly.
Communication does not mean only effective speaking. In fact, it is the beginning point. But even more important is active listening. Active listening will bring about the results that you are looking for. You communicate with someone or a group of listeners with an objective. How can you influence others? By listening to them actively or with your speech. How do you find whether you are a good listener or not? I give below a checklist which is self- expletory.
- Don’t think of what you are going to say next when another person is speaking. Just focus on understanding and assimilating what he/she has to say.
- You must listen with an open mind. Don’t try to relate with your own experience, similar experience. When someone is relating a story in support of his argument, your tendency to evaluate should be given a pause. Never be judgmental, as they say.
- When you are listening, try to recreate mentally what the other person is saying objectively.
- Try to see things from the speaker’s point of view. Empathize and be compassionate while listening.
- Try to uncover the intent of the speaker. All speakers may not be terse. Their verbosity may require a little extra effort on your part to understand the intent. Make this extra effort.
- Think what results you can produce through listening rather than speaking. If you want to influence people, you will be amazed to observe how listening comes in handy and helpful.
- Listen a minute longer than it is comfortable. That extra minute will give you extra input. In any case, you are having a dialogue for understanding the other’s point of view.
- Last but not the least; you must remember that your words of advice will be seen as unwanted noise. Never give an advice unless asked for. If you are not convinced and the solution demands that you must express your views, do that and say we agree to disagree!
Thanks for reading.