Live and Express

Live and Express


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The Key To Running Successful Businesses

I always like to do things – by hand, by thought. I have been denied opportunities to do things quoting several excuses – ‘Oh you are too young to do that’, ‘Oh, you don’t know how to do that’, ‘Oh, we have all the connections in the town, so we will get it done quickly than you’, etc. But these denials turned out to be great motivators for me to build myself to actually DO things, to learn, and get the satisfaction that I can accomplish things.

Today, business leaders are quoting that keeping the tabs on every first-line aspect of a business is the key to succeed in a business. What does that mean? Caring to the things that you actually do as a business – making sure that the threads are sorted properly in an yarn business, making sure that the ingredients are cleaned and kitchen is disinfected in a food business, making sure that items are sorted and ready to ship in a trading business.

If you delegate, making sure that the person is doing it has all the right tools, methodology, and ingredients to do it correctly.  Keeping tabs on what’s going on and keeping the ears to the ground, I would say, is THE most important thing on anything that you aspire to do.

Starting from taking care of yourself to running the most complicated large businesses in the world, and to being spiritual – one thing is key – and I am giving it to you right here:

ATTENTION

If you pay enormous attention to your field or area, success is imminent. It can’t evade you.  With undivided attention comes the awareness and knowledge, and the action follows.

Practice it, and let me know what you find out in the comments! All the best!

Love always!

Photo by Emma Louise Comerford on Unsplash

 

 

 


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Who am I or What is this?

Several self-inquiry schools towards self-realization seem to encourage the seeker to ask the question ‘Who am I?’

‘Who am I?’ is a question that would evoke an answer relating or associating the person to something. For example, ‘Who is Venkat’ could invoke the following answers:

  • A techie
  • A son
  • Lives in Bangalore
  • Likes Tea
  • Tall

and so on…

You will note that in all these, the person ‘Venkat’ is associated with something or someone to identify himself – Technology, Parents, Place, Food/Drink, Physical characteristic.

The whole self-inquiry process is to break the chains with something or someone and to exist as a free spirit.

If I sit with my eyes closed, I should be void of anything. If you keep your body in great shape, it won’t complain or make noise! Likewise, mind could become silent through meditation. In that state, I exist, not associated with even my body and my mind.

In such a state, the question ‘Who am I’ does not makes sense, because I am not related to anything!

Then the question ‘What is this’ would make sense.

Also, questions like: what is this that exists here? where did it come from? where will it go? when the body dies, what will happen to this? when I don’t have any thoughts, what is the use of mind? etc.

Give it a try, and let me know what you experience, in the comments!

Love always!

Photo by Carlos Domínguez on Unsplash

 

 


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On Writing

They say that writing is therapeutic.

To me, it has become the way of life these days. Do I like something, write a blog about it. Do I have to put out great content to develop my business? Write a blog. Do I have to improve my professional chances? Write a blog. Do I have to rant about my city’s and my country’s state? Write a blog.

This is the reality.  Often, with the topics that I deal with on a day-to-day basis, it looks like I have to write a blog daily. I am not that much of a writing person, although I like to share stories. I am a storyteller. So, I feel like starting my blog as ‘So, what happened was…’!

Be it blog, a tweet, or a Facebook post, I realized that writing and letting others know has become imminent.  Sharing builds communities. In today’s interconnected world, we make contacts and friends whom we have not even met.  Although the ‘windows’ through which we engage them are limited to the context and scope, I found that it’s still valuable and nurtures connections.

Putting out something in public is not easy for everyone. There could be concerns relating to privacy and security. And then there is this “If you write something in Internet, it stays for ever!”  There was this meeting in one of my previous companies, where a very zealous ‘manager’ declared the above statement while talking about sharing something in the company intranet. We all humored him by saying, “Before the company takes action, I (the writer) will be dead!” So, one has to overcome this “out there in the Internet” fear too.

In spite of all these, one still has to write, speak, and be visible to be successful, to build contacts, connections and get opportunities. I used to be a lab-rat for many years. I didn’t build my connections based on my skill-sets. But, no regrets, I am here now. And writing.

Cheers to success!

Photo by Kevin Erdvig on Unsplash


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The undistracted time!

Recently I was having concentration problems. Unable to focus, unable to get anything done, too much to crunch…I was questioning myself ‘What’s going on! Where’s the guy who focuses on one thing at a time and does a great job?’

I guess everybody these days are going through this because of (1) options, (2) exposure, (3) information and (4) social media. In one of my earlier blogs, I wrote about how to handle information overload from social media by using streams facility offered by social media management tools.

This is really a very ‘disruptive’ society (no pun intended) that we live in, with loads to learn, and keep ourselves updated. One thing I figured is that there are multiple players in the same product space trying to compete to get your attention and get you to buy their product, and in that process, confuse you totally that you become numb and won’t take any action.

This trend has psychological effects too. I wrote about the effect of endless browsing in the social media platforms before. These kind of browsing makes you just depressed. Now researchers are asking not to just browse, and more specifically NOT to multitask, and focus on a single task at a time! I am just reminded about the number of browser tags that have open in my browser!

The issue has become so serious that there have been books written of late on how to stay focused! One of such books, whose Amazon summary I really liked is ‘Deep work’ by Cal Newport. I think this book nails the issue, and probably provides the apt solutions for handling the issue.  I just came across the book, when I was looking for books for success!

Well, that’s it for now. I hope the information is helpful to you. Let’s look forward for productive times and lots of success!

 


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On social media and channelizing the minds

Why social media for me :

It was one of those strenuous days in 2017. I had too much to do in 3 or 4 activities spread across the day.  I like focus, and that’s the way I have been for the past many years. I like channelizing my mind, body and my energies in a task. But then, there are some boring moments when you would like to just get off for a minute or two, wander your body and your mind, and then get back to the task.

Social media (Facebook, Twitter, et al) have been a cure (or a curse on how you see it).  That one of two minutes of wandering of the mind away from the task using social media extended to 10 minutes, 20 minutes, and before you know, it had consumed a full 43 minutes!

“Well, that’s not good”, I told myself. I decided to take a mental inventory of HOW the time is spent on social media. I sat down and wrote a diary of all the posts I read, I liked and shared, and just “browsing”.  Though it was just my break time that I spend on social media, I wanted to justify myself on how the time is spent, because it’s my precious breath and life after all, moment after moment, before I die!

My findings!

The notes I saw alarmed me. 89% of the time was just browsing post after post in Facebook and Twitter, without any focus, learning or practicing a skill.  A typical “browse” Facebook session contained a book advertisement from a book club, an advertisement on how to “opt-in” more customers to your blog site, a post in a school group asking whether this school is better or that, a post in a music group with a picture of a guy with a violin, a group post about the latest trend in western cinema, a post in a railway group about that fantastic engine….You get the drift.

A rattling mind and the consequences

If your mind travels this fast with no focus on a specific subject or related thinking, you know where you will get to – nowhere.  It not only puts your brain in an ever-shifting mode, it will strain your brain to no-end resulting in nervousness, a sense of loss, depression, anger and a deprived feeling!  Many studies have also shown the same.

Social media tools for streamlining

Social media tools that help you segregate topics as streams based on hashtags or keywords are helpful. It helps browse through the social media posts and organize your thoughts on one direction, learning a thing or two about a topic and participating in a discussion.  But many of us do not use those tools on a native basis, but login to the social media sites directly.   In this year, I have reminded myself to use these tools instead of logging into social media sites directly, and save myself of the mental stress!  If I ever wanted to take a 2-minute break, that should not be and won’t be on the social media sites, but a short walk, a visit to the restroom, a cup of water and then back to work again.

Not just the break time!

We all know the three things that are required to excel – Learn, Practice, Network.  A typical successful person’s time management has these components.  For all of these, accessing the Internet has become a necessity.  For learning and networking, social media has become important.  We just need be careful that our learning and networking time is used productively, not just during the break time, but during our work time also, and be conscious that our precious time is not wasted in endless, mindless browsing.

So…

I thought I would just share my thoughts on this, which I had been postponing for a while now. I wrote a Facebook post (there you go!) on this sometime back, but not sure how many people it reached, so here I am, writing a blog.  Hopefully it’s useful for you!
Thanks for listening!


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The value of family and life – #India #Population

I write about India Population. And it’s a very unpopular topic.

Sometimes you need the steel heart to read the personal attacks that emanate from people who think that their rights are being violated when asked to consider not to give birth to children.

Here are some of the feedback received from very well known members of the community:

‘You look like you have lived your life well. How can you ask us to not to have babies? I am an unmarried woman in my twenties, and I want to have my family’.

‘Have you ever given birth and raised children?’

The first comment is because they fear the system/government will prohibit having babies.

The second comment is tricky.  If I answer ‘Yes, I have had children’, then they will blast me ‘You advice something for the world, and you do things differently. Hypocrite!’  If I answer ‘No, I have not had children’, then they will blast me ‘See? How will you know the value of having a family? You should never advice!’

Let’s look at it objectively.

The moment your child gets out into the streets of India, they become one in the 2.72 billion people. And the family safety net that you provide is lost.  In the streets, today, people don’t even see each others faces and smile at strangers. They are all driven by their own missions of getting to office and coming back. So, the ‘value’ that you are talking about in your ‘own’ child just vanishes in the society.

More so with these huge numbers of people. As the numbers increase, tolerance to fellow human beings will naturally reduce. All the push-pulls that happen in the public transport, and the politics that happen at the work places will increase as there are more number of people, because, everyone has to take care of their survival.

If you are not objective, and take care of managing the no. of people that this nation can hold (by the way, we are 17.5% of world’s population in 2% of world’s land!), then nature will be cruel.  By nature, I don’t mean just the land, water, air, etc, but also all the life forms including human.

Our nation has been a very tolerant one in general. ‘Please adjust’ has been our mantra. But that will break with a population growth of 1.6% every year, as per the latest reports. People will start being cruel to each other. Like buying illegal software through an IRCTC official and booking 36 tickets at once illegally!

Just take a look around, and see if we really more children. How are we going to educate and give jobs to all these population? What about drinking water, food, space to live? For God’s sake, how about experiencing the pleasantness of life with some space instead of always being jam-packed?

If one really values life and family, they will understand it’s being cruel to everyone to add more. And probably adopt children who have no one to care for.

Someone said ‘There will come a time when the government will start asking to produce babies’. That would be a golden day to live when we are all joyful, and want to make copies of ourselves.

But right now, we are over-crowded and miserable. Let’s stop!


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The collective Karma! #India #Asia #Population

I was walking hurriedly near Jyothi Nivas bus stop in Bangalore, It was almost time for my appointment, and I did my usual fast stroll, which is faster than the average walking speed for a stroll! I was walking on the road, as several vehicles were parked against the footpath, and I was not able to navigate myself to walk in the footpath alone. And then, this gentleman comes along from the footpath, takes 5 steps, walks in front of me, and starts staring at something behind me. I could not stop myself at that speed, so I took his two hands, moved him out of my way, and kept walking. He started yelling at me, but I didn’t care. I kept walking.

Has this ever happened to you? People suddenly coming in your way without giving due thought and consideration that you might bump into them? To be precise ‘StumbleUpon’ into them?

This indeed set of a series of thoughts in me. I usually scan the area around which I walk or drive, and I make sure that I give space to people who are coming into my zone. I either stop, or move away, or do something such that there’s no crash. But sadly, I have observed that many in India do not do that. They stare somewhere, have their own thoughts going in their minds, and walk or drive right royally into me.

So, is this my karma ? I broke my head almost 10 years thinking about this since I moved to Bangalore. Someone close to me always makes fun of me that I attract such people to me unconsciously! But, today, I would and have definitely concluded that it is not MY karma, but the collective karma of India.

Before you start showering obscenities towards me for taking India’s name, let me explain myself!

I think it’s the collective karma of India, in terms of population.

Already absent-minded and the free-flow Indian who does not have the concept of queue or discipline in their blood – if the numbers of those multiply, the StumbleUpon crashes also multiply!

I sometimes wonder that if I had been in New Mexico state of the United States, where in some areas one can’t see human beings for miles together, or probably even in Arizona state of the United States, I would be able to do my fast straight stroll without a problem! And yes, I could have my own thought process going on and jay-walk along till that 24-wheeler truck comes and hits me or scares me off the road with that loud honk!

Yes, it’s the no. of heads, people. Nothing else. India has 17% of world’s population in 2% of world’s land, and what else can you expect from that Koramangala uncle ?

And being quiet, abstaining (ahem, ahem…) or may be adopting would be a good collective karma for India moving forward!

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