Saturday, October 06, 2007

How to Deal with People Who Hurt You

There are number of instances in life when people hurt us, either with their actions or with their words. There may be times when they did not really mean it, but it just happened that you perceived them in a different way.

However, there are certain people who seem to be out there with a mission to make your life miserable. They will do everything possible to make you feel bad, they will criticize you, humiliate you, abuse you and what not. You are a nice person and you are unable to figure out why these particular people are behaving in this odd fashion.

Ultimately, you start to ignore them, and hate them, and try to escape. But the bad taste in the mouth remains. You do not even want to confront as you are afraid that it will lead the unpleasantness. And many times confrontation may make the situation worse, as your tormentor realizes that he/has succeeded in making you feel bad. So, what will you do? How will you react? Crying in frustration is definitely not going to help.

Lot of people may advice you to “Be positive”. But how can you be positive when you actually feeling negative? How can you love, forgive and forget when inside the core of your heart you are feeling loath and revenge?

How? How? How?

Yes, you can, if you know this secret that I am going to share with you. But before that I will like to tell you a story.

In a class a professor, drew a small dot on the white board, and asked his students what they see. Everyone, shouted in unison “A dot”

The professor asked them to look carefully and answer. But their answer was the same. Then he asked his students, that can not they see the white board, the wall on which it is hung, the professor and the table in front of him.

The students were amazed at their own answer, because, they in fact could see much more than the dot. But then previously why they could not see it all?

The reason as the professor explained was “Focus”. What we are focusing in life? Because, he drew a dot everyone saw the dot. When he brought their attention to other things they could see it as well, but not before that.

In our lives we focus at the problem, and keep on harping about it. But in fact, the solution is situated not inside but outside the problem. All we need to learn is to look at the white board and not at the dot.

Now, there is this person bothering you, abusing, you, making you feel miserable, though you want to be friends with him or her. And you are feeling bad, exactly as this person wanted. But there is an escape to this. Now next time something like this happens, and you are feeling negative try “praying.”

“Praying”, you must be saying, “But I do pray”

Let me ask you....” For whom do you pray?”

It’s possible that your answer is “I pray to God to give me strength and tolerance”

That is what we should do. Right!

Right, but where is your focus? When you pray to God and ask for strength and tolerance you actually believe that you lack it. Your focus automatically is on your misery and it gets reinforced in your mind and you eventually feel more miserable.

So, next time rather than praying for yourself, pray for your tormentor. Jesus when he was on cross was not praying for himself, but for people who were crucifying him. He said “Father, forgive them, they do not know what they are doing.”

Prey, for the person who has done you wrong. He is the person who should be pitied and not you. Think, how much he or she has lost, by behaving the way he/she did. He/she has lost the pleasure of a beautiful relationship with a nice person like you. He/she has become lonelier, more secluded, and all by himself/herself. Don't you think such a person needs your help? You can help by preying for him/her.

And hey presto! What happens? Your negativity melts and you start feeling positive. Your misery will disappear, since, now your anger will turn into pity. Your focus will shift from you to the other person. You will feel that the other person is actually more of a victim of his or her own action than you are. Since you are preying for someone else, you are the giver. You can not feel negative when you are giving. You will do something very positive. You can not do positive and feel negative at the same time. You will feel good; in fact you will start feeling “GREAT”.

Please remember
“God grants us our wishes when we are praying for other” and
“No one has the right to hurt you against your wish.”

Have faith and do well. You are not alone. God is always there with you!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

How I Became a Positive Person

Everybody has a story to share. So, have I. If reading my story inspires just one person in this world, I think my purpose will be solved. I was not always a positive person. I suffered from a griping sense of discontent. I was unable to derive satisfaction from my relationships. Though I had a number of acquaintances, I had very few friends. I was unable to use my talents and skills optimally. A non-believer, I never used to pray and had no faith. Of course I was spiritually bankrupt. To top it all, I had suffered heavy losses in a business venture, and now I was financially bankrupt as well. I felt so depressed and gloomy that I could light up a room simply by leaving it. I had lost my self-image, confidence, and hope. In other words I was negativity personified.

Playing the blame game was my favorite pastime. I blamed my circumstances, my parents, my school, my wife, even my year old daughter (as if an infant could have caused my failure). Actually, I blamed everyone, other than myself, the person who was really to be blamed.

Thank God, I always loved reading. And it was through printed words that I saw light. I read a story about a small child who was disturbing his father who was trying to work. The father tears up a world map and gives to the child to put it together, thinking that it will keep him occupied for a long time. Now, there was a picture of a man behind the map. The child could put the man together in just a few minutes. But the map behind was right too. I realized that if I put the man I am right, my world will become right as well. And that my dear friend, was the turning point.

The first thing that I changed was my reading habit. Earlier I was reading a lot of fiction. I changed that to reading Positive Mental Attitude books. I started associating with Zig Ziglar, Dale Carnegie, Dr. Shad Hamstead, Dr. Steve Price and so many other positive people through their wonderful books. I read about dreams, faith, goals, positive attitude, relationships, and self- image. I was also listening to recording by powerful speakers. And I realized that everyone has problems and challenges in life. But it is the way we respond to it that all matters. It is either, we react to a situation (negatively) or respond (positively) to it and that makes the difference in the result we produce.

This very powerful association has already started changing something inside me. I had started seeing things in a different perspective. Now I knew that the situation I am in was bad, but not hopeless. A wonderful book “All things are possible through prayer,” by Charles L. Allen changed my life for ever. I learned how to pray, and I prayed for the first time in my life. And you know what; it was answered in just ten minutes. That was the beginning of a new chapter in my life, one that was filled with faith. I had begun appreciating this beautiful creation that we so often take for guaranteed. I could now feel the hand of God working in my life. Everything around me now inspired me. It is not that things had changed for me, but what had changed was the way I looked at them.

One more thing that I changed was that I started choosing my association more carefully. I started visiting inspirational seminars and made friends with positive people. I purposely started keeping away from people who could have negative effect in my life. I became selective with the programs I saw on television or the movies I saw. If I see negativity being glamorized in any of the programs, I would simply leave the room. I was protecting my mind from negatives.

It was as if my mind was getting reprogrammed. As my spiritual account filled up, my self-image improved. I started taking responsibility of my self. Now when I spoke the words that came out were positive. I was feeling happy. Not because the circumstances were happy one, but because I felt more in peace with myself. Since, now I was accepting myself more, I could accept people more naturally. Obviously, the relationships improved. Now, I liked people and people liked me. It was as if I was living in a brand new world.

As I kept on growing from inside, I saw the situations outside changing. Since I was taking responsibility of my actions and was moving in faith, I started doing better in my career. I won’t say that it was always a smooth journey ever since. There were a lot of things that did not went well, or the way I had them planed. But, with my new positive outlook and a faith that was stronger than steel, I could see opportunity in every setback. Today, I have got back much more than what I had lost earlier in material things as well as the things that money can not buy.

Today, I thank God for giving all the challenges in past. It was the extremely unbearable situation of being financially bankrupt that got me changing. Today, I know that if God gives me more challenges it will be to strengthen my shoulder to bear the burden of greater responsibilities and blessings.

Thank you God for blessing me and my family! God, please work in the life of this reader the way you worked in my life…..

Friday, July 06, 2007

Keys to Happiness

Most people honestly believe that they will be happy when they are able to get a job they want, but when they get it, they won’t be. They feel that they will be happy once they have a nice house- but they won’t be. Then they will be happy when they have put in everything neatly so that they can call the house their home – but they won’t be. Then a fancy car, an exotic vacation, etc. etc. but happiness seems to be eluding them. Is it really possible to have permanent happiness?

Search of happiness is one of the basic purposes of human life. However, it is also the source of greatest frustration. Many successful people who had been super-achiever feel the futility of their efforts that has gone in the pursuit of happiness. Unfortunately many of them actually feel more depressed and unhappy even if they win the rat race of the material world. There are some others who seek happiness in drugs, alcohol, illicit relationships, gambling and immoral conduct. But it all ultimately destroys the person rather than giving what the person seeks for.

The main reason for this frustrating situation is that most people fail to differentiate between joy or pleasure and real happiness. All the material things in life can actually give joy and pleasure, and that is momentary. It lasts for a while and then extinguishes, like a lamp that gives light till the oil lasts. A new house, a fancy car or an exotic vacation will give joy for a while. But then as the novelty wears of, it will no longer be a source of pleasure. Bhagwat Gita points out that everything in this material world is temporary and that every human being is living in illusion. And this is the cause of all miseries.

Happiness therefore is not in material things, but in certain things that money can not buy. These are the keys or principles that can open door to happiness, irrespective of the situation or circumstances one is in. This is evident from the fact that many families with limited means seem more happy than those who are financially blessed. So, what are these secret keys of happiness?

Physical Health: You have surely heard that health is wealth. We experience everything through our body. It is our body through which we make the efforts that brings results. Therefore it is important to keep healthy physically to experience happiness. In today’s world that is full of rat race, people often neglect their health. Lack of physical exercise, unbalanced diet, pollution, stress, all takes toll on our health. To top it, we try to gratify ourselves by involving into drugs, alcohol, tobacco etc, in the process spoiling our physical well being. Of course there is no happiness in indulging in pleasures all night and then getting up sick in the morning. Therefore, a healthy body is the first key to happiness.

Keeping Healthy Mind: Like physical health, it is important to keep a healthy mind. I believe that it is more important, as healthy body often follows healthy mind. Happiness is more in the mind of an individual than anywhere else.

Mental health comprises of a high self-image, positive mental attitude and strong value systems. Like we eat and exercise to keep our body healthy we must also feed our mind on a regular basis with strong positive thoughts, otherwise the mental health may fall victim to the countless negativities that exist in the world. Reading good books, listening to powerful recording and associating with positive and progressive people are the best ways to keep a healthy mind.

Spiritual Well-being: Man is a spiritual being and happiness is a spiritual feeling. Many religions in the world advocates that the only way to eternal happiness and bliss is in service of God, the ultimate spiritual authority. This however, does not mean that we renounce the world and become a hermit. In fact, serving other people in this world is the best way to serve God. That is why we feel internal happiness when we do something for others without any selfish motive. Having faith, praying for others and helping others through our action are often enough for our spiritual well-being. On the contrary, harming others, seeking revenge, victimizing, using dishonest means lowers our worth of self and leads to spiritual bankruptcy, and robs us our peace of mind.

Hard Work: Man is engineered to produce abundance with his efforts. Laziness is one of the greatest reasons for sorrow in this world. People who believe in honest hard work are the one who are far happier than the one who tries to profit by dishonest and seemingly easy means. Hard work is required for good health: physical, mental and spiritual, as well as for maintaining good relationships, and material success. A person, who believes in hard work, has high self image and creates security that gives peace of mind that is essential for happiness.

Hope: Nothing is possible without hope. Hope is one thing that keeps the person going on even in worst situations. You can never be happy if you have no hope. ‘Hope’ is the belief that the thing will get better, than what they are now. A person who has lost hope will loose his health, spiritual connection and will take no action to improve his situation. Since everything that we do is with a hope for better tomorrow, hope remains an important key to happiness.

Since, success is not a destination but a journey and happiness is an important ingredient of success, we feel happy as we move on. Reaching a destination may give us joy, but it is the endeavor to reach and the belief that we can reach further is what gives us happiness. Happiness is in playing the game not in winning. So, make happiness a major goal in your life and test all your other goals against it to live a happy life.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

The Concept of Balanced Success

What is success? For different people success will mean different things. In this material world success is often equated with money one has and the kind of lifestyle one affords. Normally a person who lives in a big house or drives a fancy car or holds a good position in his office appears to be successful in the eyes of the world Success for most is achieving goals that gives them joy or pleasure. But unfortunately these achievements give short lived joy and this feeling of success is often a delusion. It is like a mirage after which the person runs and eventually forgets the very reason for which he is running.

In order to live a life of true success, it is vital that success is explained. Life has so many facets, and each of them is important to us. What will a person do with a lot of money, if he looses his peace of mind and health, gets away from his family and friend, feels in- secured, and ultimately unhappy? Of course, this can not be termed as success.

So again, what is success? Success is actually a balance of a number of factors in life that makes our life worth living. A person having a lot of wealth and creating more of it, but destroys his relationships and happiness in the process has only a unidirectional success. A person who is financially well off and enjoys good relationship, but still feels unhappy has bi-directional success, but lacks balanced success. In my opinion one can be said to have a balanced success if he/she has:

- Happiness
- Reasonable wealth, prosperity and security
- Meaningful relationships &
- Hope

Most people usually mistake things like achievements, entertainment, possessions for happiness. These things give joy but not happiness. Joy is momentary pleasure that we derive when our senses are gratified in this material world. Happiness is a permanent state of mind that is not dependent on the circumstances and situations. A person with lots of achievements, possessing all worldly possessions may still be unhappy, whereas a person who is struggling hard to make his ends meet may be happy.

Joy and pleasure are material, but happiness is spiritual. Happiness is a result of good health (physical, mental and spiritual) and having peace of mind. Good health is a result of discipline, faith, love, commitment, persistence and honesty. A healthy body and mind that is full of faith helps a person to do what is to be done, while running his life on values. This provides peace of mind and protects his spiritual wellbeing. On the contrary, a person who is not healthy physically can not enjoy life, and a person with unhealthy mind will sacrifice his values to acquire things that give him temporary joy and pleasure. Such a person will be spiritually bankrupt and have no peace of mind and therefore can never experience happiness.

Money is an important parameter of success. However, it does not mean that everyone needs to become a billionaire. But money is important for us to provide us with what we require. Reasonable wealth means having enough money that can take care of all our needs. Of course, needs will vary from individual to individual, and so will the meaning of reasonably wealthy. Some people say that money is the root of all evil. It is untrue. It is the greed for money that is the root of all evil. Money when accumulated immorally and for selfish interests destroys the person’s inner calm and in fact brings about insecurity Money when earned honestly can give peace of mind, comfort and a high level of security and be a source of immense joy. As a matter of fact prosperity can be a reward for the number of people you help to get what they want. And helping others is the finest source of happiness.

One of the most important aspects of balanced success is the relationship that one earns. Good relationships are the most important wealth that a person can accumulate in the life time. Relationships within the family and that with the friends are a constant source of joy and happiness as well as security. People most unfortunately in pursuit of material success, often neglect their relationships and in the end they find themselves lonely and unhappy. Such people in-spite of achieving so much remains unsuccessful in the end.

‘Hope’, I believe is the key to success. Hope that things will improve and become better is what makes a person go on in face of all challenges. If the hope is lost all is lost. We exercise and eat well with a hope of remaining physically healthy. We work hard with a hope to become prosperous. In fact you are reading this article with some hope. The word H.O.P.E. means Honest Optimism with Personal Efforts. When you are optimistic because of your honest faith and there fore makes personal efforts, it produces a result that helps you to become a success.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Be Content, Not Satisfied

Success is not permanent. The achievement, you are feeling happy about will not mean a thing to you tomorrow. You must have taken some journeys when you were young. You must have felt good when a milestone passed as you looked out of the window, and a moment later you were looking forward to next. But were you still excited about the journey you had just taken when you reached the destination?

In fact we are excited for the destinations we want to reach but have not reached as yet. Success is the journey you take towards these un-reached destinations. We feel happy when we reach, but the joy is short lived. Next day, we need something else to feel excited about.

A mother when asked by her child that why they are not as prosperous as their neighbor, advises that she should be satisfied with what she had. The child snapped back that she is very satisfied with the grades she got in her exams. The mother was at loss of words because the grades were not flattering by any means. And if she is satisfied with them, she will never do anything to improve them.

Unfortunately too many people have learned it too well to be satisfied with what they have. They will hate the job that they are doing, but will not do anything to change it, as they have learned to be satisfied. They will struggle hard to make their ends meet, and deny every material pleasure to themselves and their family. But they will not do anything to improve their incomes because they are satisfied with whatever they have got. They will curse God for not answering their prayers, but they won’t do anything to raise themselves spiritually. They will live in darkness of ignorance but do nothing to gain knowledge. After all they are supposed to be satisfied with what they have. Too many people spend a life of mediocrity and under-achievement because they carry with them a superficial air of so called satisfaction.

Dissatisfaction is the one of the greatest motivation for achievement. You have not done enough today if you are still happy with what you did yesterday. This is why the most successful people in this world never say that they have it made. They do not accept to have arrived. They take a never ending journey towards new destinations and higher achievements. In return they create abundance that all of us are supposed to create with our action.

While in college we had a very old gentleman as one of our visiting professor. This retired top government official had a plush bungalow, and he owned four cars (still an extravaganza in India). He had no reason to work. But he would go from college to college in public transport. We thought he is greedy and a miser. We were surprised when we discovered him giving liberal charity. He told us that he feels excited to teach youngsters, and he prefers to be among people so he uses public transport. He was a voracious reader, good listener and full of excitement and enthusiasm for new things. He was dissatisfaction personified. He gave more, so he received more. And the more he received, more he gave. But he never got it made.
This does not mean that one must turn greedy and run only after material things in life. Greed is an obsession with wanting more than the honest efforts that you are willing to put. Greed will make you restless. You will loose peace of mind. In other words you will not be content. What is the feeling of content? You will be content if you are in peace with your self. When you know that you are doing what is required to be done. You are content when you are taking the journey in faith towards more fulfillments.

When you are dissatisfied, you look forward. You will look for new milestones to achieve. They could be financial, career, relationships or spiritual. You come to one milestone, rest, celebrate and then again pack your luggage for yet another exciting journey. And you feel content as you grow towards your potential and move towards fulfilling bigger purpose of your life.

It is the ‘dissatisfied’ people who rule the world. Gandhi was not satisfied with autonomy in British Rule, but he wanted complete independence for India. Mother Teresa was not satisfied helping a few hundreds or thousands of poor destitute and sick, but she wanted to take care of more and more. Buddha was not satisfied with being a king. He searched for supreme knowledge and he still was not satisfied when he got it, because he wanted to spread it around the world. Jesus was not satisfied getting on the cross just one time for our sins. He rose again and continues living in order to save more of us. God is not satisfied with this universe. It is still expanding as the God is still creating. If he is not satisfied how can we be…..?

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Life is a Lemon

Squeeze a lemon, and it will produce a juice, too harsh to be palatable. But it forms the basis for lemonade, the world’s oldest refreshing drink. Like a lemon, life is full of sour things. It is full of challenges, hardships, pain and suffering. But in all this is hidden the seeds of greatest achievements, happiness and success. Life at times can even be cruel, but that is what makes it worth living.We become happy as we fight sorrow.
We become wealthy as we struggle to remove poverty. We develop intimate relationships as we overcome loneliness. We produce light as we fight the darkness. In other words we produce positive in our endeavors to remove negative.
Life will hand you a lemon. Bigger it is; more sour it is, tastier and more of lemonade you can make with it. Bigger the suffering, bigger is the blessing; bigger the challenge, bigger is the reward. Big people made it big because they had bigger lemon in their lives. If they didn’t have theirs, they take others. Mahatma Gandhi, was a lawyer, and could have made a great career at it. But his sensitivity towards inequality and injustice made him what he was. Life handed him his lemon the day he was thrown out of the first class compartment of the train for having the wrong skin color. Would Gandhi be Gandhi we know if there was no injustice and India would not have been a ruled by exploitative British imperialists. What Mother Teresa would have done, if there was no illness and pain on the streets? Would Helen Keller rise to the heights she did, if she was not blind? The list can go on and on.
Your life is full of big problems? It has sorrows too hard to describe? You are facing hardships that you do not even want your enemies to face? Congratulations….. You have the lemon to make the lemonade. God has given you these not without reason. It is in these hard times that we grow towards our potential. So thank God for it. It is during these trying moments when you rise and keep rising, till you achieve greatness. No one is born great, but it is his challenges, pain and misery that force him to become great.
You may rightly argue that if pain and hardships are required for success, then why there are so many who are still homeless and poor. Why so many people are castigated to a life of loneliness. Why people live an entire life in misery and ultimately die a miserable and obscure death. It is simple; this is the way they want to be. They accept that lemon is a sour fruit and nothing can be done about it. The pain and misery in their life though apparent to others does not seem to hurt them. You are not suffering if you are not feeling the hurt. It is only when you feel the hurt, that you do something to remove it. And in the process you become a hero.
A lemon does not turn into lemonade all by its own. Someone has to press it to squeeze out the juice, and then add water and stir in sugar. It requires the thirst and the desire that prompts you to take action. It needs faith, that it can be done. To get the perfect lemonade, it requires careful planning and execution. And it requires patience perseverance till the sugar dissolves. And the important part, you have to make it your self. You open a bottle of readymade lemonade; it is the manufacturer who earns the money (pun intended).
So, are you ready to make your lemonade……..?

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Lamp Gives Light, Tree Gives Shade

The greatness of an individual lies not in what he accumulates but what he gives. Jesus is great because he suffered on the cross so that we are saved. Gandhi was great as he fought for freedom and equality. Mother Teresa was great as she spent her life serving poor, sick and destitute.

You need not be someone of great means to give. A lamp burns its own existence till the last moment to fight darkness and give light. Tree never asks anything for itself, but give flowers, fruits and shades to all who needs it. This kind of sacrifice is only possible for those, whose heart his filled with love and compassion for others. Their spirit has a passion for serving and an ability to feel pain of others in their own soul. It requires a go-give attitude more than a go-get attitude.

Dashrath Manjhi, a poor, illiterate, landless laborer, who lives in a backward village called Gahlore situated in the sate of Bihar in Eastern India. What a person like him could give to others?

Dashrath worked on a field near the hill that rose near the village. This hill stood between his village and civilization with only a treacherous pass between it. Since most of the cultivable land and shops were on other side of the hill, the poor villagers had to brave the dangerous pass number of times in a day. The authorities kept turning a blind eye towards the problems for decades.

One day, his wife slipped and got injured while crossing the pass on the hill, while bringing lunch for him. The incident disturbed Dashrath so much that he decided to do something about it. He sold his goat, to purchase a chisel, hammer and a rope. And with these simple equipments he set of to dig a tunnel through the mountain, all by himself. He dug for 22 years to create a passage that is 360 ft. long, 25 feet high and 16 ft wide, enough for a vehicle to pass.

People called him mad, but he was a man with a purpose. Today, because of him the life of his fellow villagers has become easier. He has thrown the doors open for the development of his village as the passage reduced the distance between two districts from 50 km to just 8 km. The state government rewarded his achievement by giving him five acres of land.

But his story does not end here. Unfortunately, his wife did not survive to witness the miracle her husband has created. She died of an illness without treatment because of lack of proper medical facilities. So, now he wants to build a hospital on the land he got as reward. After unsuccessful attempts to get assistance from the local government in this regard, he decided to meet the President of India. Since he did not have enough money to buy a railway ticket he walked on foot a distance of nearly thousand kilometers. Somebody rightly said that when dreams are big enough facts don’t count.

This poor, illiterate gentleman, belonging to the most unprivileged class of Indian society is a perfect example of success. His go-give attitude, his compassion, dream, courage, faith in himself, determination and perseverance raises him to level of greatness.

In our mundane life full of rat race for accumulation of wealth and worldly pleasure, let us take out some time to give a bit of ourselves. Let us become a slightly better human being than what we already are. After all the supreme purpose of our lives is to spread happiness and help others and that is the greatest gift of all.

God Bless You!!

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Are You A Real Positive Thinker

“No positive thinking can get you anything,
But it can get everything better than negative thinking can” - Zig Ziglar

Positive thinking is a favorite topic of most self help books and inspirational speakers. So, much has been written and said about it that I had started feeling that I can get anything simply my thinking positively about it. In fact, many life coaches (including myself in past) advocated positive thinking as a quick fix for all. I plead guilty of telling people that their failure can be attributed to their not being positive enough.

Over years I realized that simply thinking positively will not accomplish anything. The kind of positive thinking that a lot of people talk about is in a way denial of reality. It is great to think positive and speak positive. But what it can accomplish if it is not supported by the ability and skill. I am 34, and have never played football in my life. It does not matter how positive I think or speak, I can not become a professional footballer at this age. Simply because, to become a professional footballer, one has to start young and then acquire skill and ability over number of years.

This kind of unrealistic and impractical positive thinking actually can do more harm than good over the long run. This makes a person to shut his eyes from the problems and make them live in a fantasy world. In the end the person gets depressed and then proclaims that positive thinking is actually non-sense and yields no results.

As Zig Ziglar the great inspirational speaker and author says that, positive thinking can not get you any thing, but it can get you everything better than negative thinking can. There is a school student who is not good with numbers. Now, if is prone to negative thinking, he will have no hope and he will make no efforts to improve his ability. As a result he will surely fail in arithmetic. However he takes a positive decision, he will work on it and at least pass, even if not making it to the top grade. Any day, just passing is definitely better than failing.

So, if he makes sufficient effort in arithmetic and devotes maximum time to the subjects that uses his ability, he may barely pass in arithmetic but do extremely well in other subjects, making his overall grade as one of the top in the class. Now, that is Positive thinking and positive attitude.

It is therefore time to explain when and how we can use positive thinking to maximize the blessings that life has to offer. It is time to define what exactly positive thinking is. So, you are a positive thinker if you:

1. Believe in yourself and see yourself in positive light: It is important to have a healthy self image. A healthy self-image means a healthy acceptance of ones own self. All of us have different abilities and attributes that make us different and unique. If you do not have a particular ability that does not mean that you are inferior to others. Accepting your natural abilities and believing that they can help you to achieve success in life is the first step towards positive thinking.

2. Accept that problems exist and find solutions: Situations and circumstances are not always favorable, but they must not affect your thinking or attitude. Accepting the fact that situations will be difficult and there always will be problems is essential to keep a positive attitude towards them. Many pseudo positive thinkers often will not allow themselves or others to talk about problems. How can you solve problems and find alternatives if you do not discuss them. Pondering over them to find solutions is not negative thinking. Making them an excuse for not trying, or shutting your eyes to them as if they do not exist is definitely negative response to negative situations.

3. Take up challenges and grow: I advocate that positive thinking will help you to make best use of your existing abilities to achieve great heights in your life. At the same time it requires positive thinking to accept challenges to acquire new skills and abilities. Don’t get stuck with what you have. Accept challenges, and be ready to fail and learn from it. Failure is not a failure if you have learned something that makes you a better person. On the contrary any failure when taken positively will take you a bit towards success. Learn from your mistakes and grow.

4. Learn to say next: It requires lots of positive thinking to be able to say next. The ‘Next’ denotes forward motion; it denotes hope and therefore is positive. If you want to dig a well what you are supposed to do? The answer is simple dig. But what will you do, if you strike a big rock. You start digging in other place (unless you have the equipments that can dig past the rock). Same way, learn to accept rejection and move forward. Wishing that the rock will disappear by its own is negative thinking as it will not produce desired results.

5. Be ready to make changes: Is there a point in digging a well, when you can simply buy a bottle of mineral water. Know when to quit and change your plans. If repetition of same action is giving you same results, look back at them. It is positive thinking to have belief in yourself; but there is no point in feeling positive for plans that are not giving desired results. May be the course that you had chosen was not the right one for you. There is no point at sticking with a job or a career that is not giving you satisfaction either financially or spiritually. Learn to differentiate between the vehicle and the destination. Keep your eyes on your dreams and goals and be ready to change the vehicles to reach them.

6. Keep hope and faith in trying situations: It so happened that I lost everything in a venture what my wife and I had earned over a period of six years. Things looked pretty bad as we had no money left. I was thoroughly depressed and was feeling hopeless. (At that time I was not bitten by the positive thinking bug). Thankfully, my wife (who perhaps has more wisdom then I have) said, “If we are the rock bottom, there is only one place to go, and that is Up.” Now, that is a bit of positive attitude. We might have been bankrupt financially, but we still had our ability and skill. All it needed was the right attitude to make best use of them and come back. And that is what we did. In next five years we managed to become financially better off then before. It is all right to loose everything that is material, but if you have lost hope, you have lost everything. Most of the skilled people who are unemployed never find a job as they have been sold on to the idea that there are no jobs. So, they never make an effort to find one. Hope makes us to move forward, it helps us to say next, it helps us to make changes.

7. Do your best but submit to the will of God: This I believe is the mother of all positive thinking, the supreme faith. Bhagwat Gita the hindu scripture says “Perform your karma (action), do not worry about result.” Similarly Bible says “nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done. (Luke 22:42). Both mean the same thing. Do what is to be done, put your best foot forward, but in the end leave the result in hands of the God. Have faith that God has a plan for us, and if our efforts are not producing desired results, it simply means that God has better plans for us. So as a positive thinker, you thank God for not only what you have, but also for what you have been denied as there are bigger blessings in store for you.

God Bless You!!!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Why Don't You Get Your Own Dream

What is the number one pre-requisite for success? Yes! It is a Dream

But what is a dream. Is it something that you see when you are asleep? No! We are not talking about that kind of a dream. This is the one that you will have to see while you are awake. Think about it! Today’s airplanes can fly at a speed that is much more than the speed of sound. But still every plane, how so ever advanced it might be still is made on the basic principle that Wright brothers had used more than hundred years ago, when they made the first plane that really flew.

Do you think it was easy for the Wright brothers? People laughed at them. They were not qualified engineers. But they had something that was really very important and that is the Power to see a Dream.

In 1961 when John F. Kennedy became the president of USA, he gave a dream. America will be on the moon before the end of the decade. And what was the result? In 1969, Neil Armstrong of the United States of America was the first man to land on moon. When JFK made that historic declaration, USSR was much ahead of USA in space technology. But, it was the dream of a man that won.

India has always been a huge country with diverse languages, culture and religion. Though this made India rich, this was also the greatest weakness that the British colonial rulers exploited. They employed one of the most successful colonial strategy ever used in the world, “Divide and Rule.” But there was a man called Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, who united the entire country and shook the might of British Empire, with tools as simple as non-violence. Ultimately the empire where the ‘sun never used to set’ had to bow to a man with a dream.

Ok! Let us not talk about these great people. Let’s talk about the chair you are sitting on, the table your computer is kept on, or the computer itself, or the house you are living in. All this must have been somebody’s dream. Somebody must have thought how the chair will look like, what it will be made of, what will be the upholstery, what will be the color etc. This thought is nothing but a dream. And than, he must have started making it and would have given it the material shape, as you see it now and that is the realization of the dream.

You are working in an organization owned by someone else. Whose dream is it? Is it your dream or someone else’s? Of course! It is the dream of your top boss. That is why he earns more money than anyone else in the organization. That is why he lives in a better house, drives a better car, and takes his family to vacation in exotic places. The point is simple. The person with a dream has success. The person with a dream is the winner. You are working for someone else’s dream? There is nothing wrong with it. But why don’t you get your own dream?

Now, here no one is asking you to quit your job. What I am simply asking you is to get a dream. You already have it in you, to make it big. Believe me. You have been born with talents and gifts that make you unique. All you will need to do is use them and fire them with passion that comes from a dream. Even in jobs that you are doing, you can become more successful than others and reach the top. However, it is possible if uses your talents, gives you a sense of purpose and you feel passionately about the work that you are doing. Opportunities are not there in the job, but the person who is doing it.

Passion comes when you feel intensely and emotionally about something. It gives you positive energy, courage to overcome hurdles and motivation in face of failures. Look around you and you will find that people who are successful have a passion towards what they are doing and feel very emotionally towards it. This why the dream must be something that is emotionally backed up with a strong desire to achieve it, and that will translate itself into passion.

Obsession is different from passion. Obsession is born out of fear, greed, and insecurity. People who are obsessed are the people who become workaholic and suffer from stress, ignore relationships, and practically do not live a life. These people are not successful, even if they amass a lot of wealth. On the other hand the people with passion are positive. They do everything with an unselfish sense of purpose. Obviously, when they work, they do it with love and a go-give attitude. They enjoy good relationships, are open minded, enjoys good health and are truly successful.

Each one us has been gifted with the power to dream and visualize. But then why is it that only twenty percent of the people in this world are successful. Why is it that twenty percent of the people in the world control eighty percent of its wealth?

It is because most of them out there do not have the faith in their dreams. They are scared of their dreams not coming true and so they bury it deep inside. They do jobs that they do not like, are self-centered and are doomed to a life of mediocrity. They have never been taught the Principles of Success, or they have not learned them. Unfortunately, most of the schools that should be the place to learn these principles are simply a place for assimilation of hard facts and information.

The size of your success will depend on the size of your dream. In turn you will allow yourself to see a dream that is as big as your faith. It is dream coupled with your faith that will give you passion and motivation. Once you have these two, you will automatically attract the knowledge and wisdom that will catapult you to success. You are reading this article means that you already have the desire. Fortunately now a large part of the knowledge is available freely at

However, there is no free lunch. Even if the resource is available free, you will have to pay for your success with hard work, persistence, and sacrifice. But the price that you pay for success is far less than the price that you pay for failure. As Zig Ziglar, the great inspirational speaker and author say “You enjoy the price of success; you pay the price of failure.”