Personal Development

Why does Self-development Doesn’t Deliver results for Most of Us

The honeymoon period of self-development doesn’t last much long and most of us get over dreams of seven rainbows very early. One basic fact here is that the most important ingredient of self-development is changing ourselves. This is the most frightening hoop that we have to jump through.

Human beings resist change. Changing oneself is the most difficult, tedious and procrastinated work in the world.

We are not able to get dividends out of self-development because change is hard. It is the hardest thing in the world. We must know and accept this. It is like sculpting oneself with chisels and hammers. The sculptor and sculpture are the same person here.

Personal Development

Make Hard Choices Today To Make Life Easier Tomorrow

We all remember what our elders used to say. “Work hard now to enjoy your life later.” They used to say this with respect to career and making a living. Adding to it, I must say this advice can be applied to every area of our lives.

If we constantly dread taking the hard way of struggle, hard work, keeping our promises and become better at making right promises, then life is not going to smile on us later.

Whenever I gulp a fizzy drink, I remind me a warning. Whatever junk is going inside my stomach is going to show its fruits by bulging me at the seams. Whenever we eat or drink junk, once it reaches inside, it is going to do harm. Our wishful thinking is not going to save our health.

Similarly, in life if we don’t learn to listen others properly, not work hard on our studies, not take care of our health, not make judicious use of our time, we are not going to survive later the hard realities of life. Stephen R. Covey writes eloquently in his masterpiece – “The Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People” – “When we pick one end of a stick, we pick its other end also.” Such a simple observation describes beautifully the truth of life.

Take hard choices now to make life beautiful and a pleasant experience later. Easy becomes easy when its hard and sharp edges had been filed up to give it a smooth experience.

Personal Development

Beware of What You Focus on

Life is a simple game. If we master this simple rule which we will discuss below, we can change our lives. Enough said, we know simple doesn’t translate to easy. Simple adages are most difficult to practice. “Work hard.” A simple adage but one of the most difficult to practice.

Nevertheless, the rule I am discussing here is different. The rule is – “Whatever we focus on, we will improve in our lives.”

If we see ourselves solving our financial problems, we will be able to solve it. If we consistently focus on the financial problems and how they have made our lives miserable, we will get more financial problems.

Say it “Law of Attraction” or whatever you may. May be it is just a logical thing as mind starts working on the command that it needs to solve the financial problem. When one focuses on problems, mind is not been made to work on the problem at hand. It is actually just told that one is in a mess.

Our brain and its abstract equivalent – mind, are strangely complex and powerful instruments given to us. They are much more powerful than supercomputers on this planet. All the billionaires and leaders have been inspired by this fact. They realised the power they have up there at the topmost floor of their body architecture.

This power is with us as it is with these movers and shakers of the globe. Only we have to give these instruments their due credit. It is as simple as that. With due practice, we will be able to realise the tremendous power we hold.

Personal Development

Just Start Doing it

We have to do a work. We have to shave our beard and our moustache with it. We want to call a friend and have some nice chitchat.

What do we so? We wait. We wait for some seconds, then some minutes, then a hour or two passes.

Our lives have become so stuck that even calling a lovely friend looks like a task that we don’t do instantaneously. We know talking with that friend is not a chore, it will actually be a fascinating thing for the day. What do we actually do? We procrastinate even in things that is surely going to bring happiness at both ends of the waves.

Actually, the panacea for this is to make a habit of starting the task at once. If there is nothing to be thought about or plan for that particular task, we must start doing it at once. These things should not wait just for the sake of waiting.

We will find that the call we were dilly-delaying on came out to be a wonderful experience. The blog post we were fearing to start, gave us immense satisfaction on its completion. The office work we started working without delay provided us a pat on our back, from ourselves every time and may be from our bosses.

This practice will build a real strength in our character. The starting few seconds are the crucial one. It is not as if we cannot start if we lose this early period but starting at once gives a sense of control. It nourishes the soul. Waiting for no reason actually feeds the ego.

Personal Development

It’s Really Important to Know One’s Strength.

Elephant has more strength than a lion. Nevertheless, lion is considered the king of jungle. Most people admire an elephant more than a lion. Lion is a beast, literally even, while elephant is a peaceful herbivore. Elephant also has more strength than a lion.

The thing I am talking about may be only figurative but still it brings home an important point.

Lion looks more aware of itself and its strength while elephant is more of a happy-go-lucky animal and unaware of its humongous strength. This self-knowledge gives a lion its assurance which is lacking in an elephant. This awareness about its strength make lion a more daring and intrepid animal and crowns it with the title of a king.

“Know thyself” – as they say. It should be added to this statement – “Know thy strengths first”.

Most people are grappling with their weaknesses. While it is important to know our weaknesses and remove them, it is more important to know our strengths. Knowing one’s strengths, a person becomes assured that he has something to fall back upon if things don’t work around. It also gives a sense of self-confidence and may also provide him with a livelihood where his strengths are the best-fit.

Personal Development

The World is changing for sure.

“The world is changing.”

I had this thought today.

There was a time when people who were immersed in self-help literature or blabbering the cliche – be positive, were considered stupid by most and downright lunatic by some.

Now, the situation has transformed. Since last few years, most people are themselves in some way or the other touched by motivational and inspirational gold nuggets. Now, people don’t disdain others if they find them reading a self-help book.

The cause of this tectonic shift has been the intrepidity of motivational speakers who despite huge discouragements from a cynical world kept on teaching the principles to others. The people who we know with the names of Robin Sharma, Eckhart Tolle, Jim Rohn, Anthony Robbins, Brian Tracy and others are reaping victories now.

The change in atmosphere has been more pronounced in India as Western countries had these teachers since long decades back.

The first Indian motivational speaker I came across was Shiv Khera. His book – You can Win, created a flutter at that time. I, suffering a burden of IIT-JEE preparation wanted a hand on it. I could not read it though at that time. Nevertheless, it surely burned an effigy in my mind making me reach for self-help materials and teachings everywhere.

The most motivational and inspirational figure in my life has always been Swami Vivekananda. His quotations sometimes shiver me up. These shivers are not just inspirations, they are electric convulsions to the core of my being. Motivational and inspirational sayings and teachings we find in modern books also exploded out in Vivekananda’s speeches. His works are replete with strength building utterances and writings. Though whole work is rather very deep, dense, spiritual and displays signs of a humongous personality.

French Nobel laureate Romain Rolland writes about Vivekananda’s sayings -“I cannot touch these sayings of his, scattered as they are through the pages of books at thirty years distance, without receiving a thrill through my body like electric shock. And what shocks, what transports must have been produced when in burning words they issued from the lips of the hero!”

Similarly, modern motivators are now not shy of delivering assertions that humongous success and happiness is within everyone’s reach. These things when verbalized few years ago carried a big risk of making a fool of oneself. Now, life changing shifts are being seen in many people. A sizeable percentage of humanity is evolving to an altogether new levels of consciousness. Having benefited from these principles and teachings, they are passing on the gifts to all who care to listen.

Personal Development

Every Situation in Life is a Present

Every situation in life is a present from God, Providence, Nature, Good Forces or whatever you believe in. Sometimes the gift is wrapped in a shiny glazed colourful cover, and we call this gift “good times”. Still, other times the gift is wrapped in an ugly and rough sheet. This we call bad times.

We must need to have courage, patience, trust and industry to peel off the cover and find the real gift inside.

Every problem and obstacle brings with it the opportunities of the same amount or to any degree higher than the challenge faced. The obstacles are actually the stepping stones which take us to real success. These are all there for us to learn from.

We must see all the problems, not as obstacles but as challenges. These challenges are not there to break us. They are there to reveal to us our real character and strengths. Let all the difficult challenges in our life come to know that we are difficult too. We are not here to back down but to deliver such a severe blow to shatter them to pieces.

Personal Development

Numbness, Pain and Pleasure

Mind is a tremendous tool. It can be our worthy ally but is a cruel master. It should help us rather than dictate us. There are three minds – conscious mind, subconscious mind and unconscious mind.

Conscious mind is like a gatekeeper that decides what should enter in our subconscious mind. The beliefs we have in our subconscious mind decide our fate in life.

Most of us have become unconscious about our thoughts. The reason for this is the pain we experience all through life. The remedy is to move towards happiness and pleasure. Pleasure is not wrong. Most of us have wrong conceptions about pleasure. Definitely, pleasure should not be our end goal in life. Nevertheless, it should not be shied away with. It should not be considered our enemy rather an ally in moving through life.