July 2009

Now is the time to talk about the busy and time broke people. They may be professionals or students, rich or poor, young, high tech or low tech. One commonality they all have is: They are all busy people. In fact very busy and have no time!

How many times have we heard someone saying this?

“I am too busy to do this.”

“I have no time right now for anything.”

This is the most common excuse heard around on a daily basis. Our friends, family members, colleagues and other acquaintances, they all use one of these statements to explain why they can’t do what they were supposed to do! Many use this excuse to just get by the situation, while others really feel like they are dying with the work load.

Let’s take an example to understand the lifestyle of busy professionals who spent almost all their day and most of night in office working hard and have no time for anything else.

We all know how important exercise for a good health is. Doctors recommend working out for at least 30 minutes a day for at least 3 days a week to keep a good health. But not many people really exercise even though we all know it’s important!

Reason?  No brainer! Same “no time” excuse most of the time! Also because it’s not critical if we already have a good health right now.

Let’s say the company they work for changes the policy that requires everybody to submit proof of doing exercise at least 3 times on a weekly basis and links this policy to their salary.

Guess what? Everybody suddenly will find time now to exercise regularly and also take extra time to get and submit the proof in timely manner!

So, where did the time come from now?

Here is the deal! With the change in company policy, working out is no more a matter of choice. It became a need, an urgent need and thus this activity got top priority and thus time was allocated to it!

Average people live by this approach. For them, important things in life don’t get attention in general until they become critical. Until body doesn’t complain, they keep ignoring health, until wife doesn’t ask for divorce, they keep ignoring family and running around in office, until they are not fired from job, they don’t think of diversifying their earnings. These people always have ready answer if you ask them to act,”I am too busy!”

David Schwartz writes in his famous book “The Magic of Thinking Big” about this same exact excuse. He calls it a disease by name “Exquisites” where he really explains that everybody, whether you are president of a big company or the paperboy, has exactly the same 24 hours in a day. Nobody has more, nobody has less. He says there is just no truth in this statement! Successful people don’t say “I don’t have time”.

The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that “extra”. Winners recognize that difference and take charge to put that extra efforts and differentiate themselves from average and ordinary crowd.

It is said that readers are the leaders. I would recommend reading and learning from some fabulous books to those serious about life and have some dreams and desires to make a difference in their lives and help others as well.

Some of my favorites are:

1. “The Magic of Thinking Big” by David Schwartz

2. “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” by Stephen R. Covey

3. “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to Yahoo BuzzAdd to Newsvine


How many times have we met somebody who we thought has some genius inside but they are not living up to their potential? Some of these people have brilliant academic history, some others have that extraordinary brain that probably can solve any mathematical or scientific problem before even we finish the problem statement itself!

Yet, they live an ordinary life… contribute nothing much to the society… do nothing that could make any significant difference in anybody’s life. But they seem satisfied with what they have accomplished and proudly justify why they are who they are!

Talking to them brings a thought as if all others who are working hard to make a difference in their lives and in society are crazy people running around! And these are the real intellectuals who actually are doing nothing much of significance…

As a matter of fact, these extraordinary people live an ordinary life and feel proud about it! What an irony!

Thinking of  it, I remember this profound statement from speech of a motivational speaker:

“In life, we will either make a footprints or butt prints in the sands of time”

Making footprints means you took charge, tried, made no excuses, did what you were best at and best of all made a positive impression in time with the gift of who you are.

Making butt prints means you sat your life out on your butt and did nothing.

The difference between these two prints is that, looking back in time, one has you saying “I’m glad I did that” and the other has you saying,”I wish I had done that”

Success and failure both are relative terms and they both depend on their understanding of the individual. Some people feel successful if they are doing okay or better as compared to others around them. These are self centric people.

For others success means much more than that. They feel successful if they touched lives of others and made a positive difference in their lives. These are the people who leave their footprints who others would follow. These are the people remembered long after they are gone…

In my opinion, we all want to make a difference. We all are valuable with incredible gifts ripe for making an impact if we want to. But we must step out of our comfort zone, use them and make a difference rather than sitting down and ride this life out!

I love this quote that is so simple yet so powerful and I would like to share here as my closing note:

If you want to touch the past… touch a rock

If you want to touch the present… touch a rose

If you want to touch the future… touch a life.

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to Yahoo BuzzAdd to Newsvine

We all have read little stories in childhood teaching some or the other morel lessons. Those lessons from little stories give us a way to lead a good, satisfying and successful life. However, the tragedy is that, while we still continue teaching those lessons to our younger generations, our children, we ourselves never try to understand and implement those in our lives.

One such story I read today and thought of putting it here. The story is about a father and his son who purchased a donkey from the nearby town and now, they were returning home.

On the way, they heard somebody saying,”Look at these fools, they have a donkey with them but both are walking with donkey”. So, they both started riding the donkey.

Later, on the way, someone said, “Look at these cruel men! Both are killing the donkey with their weight”. So, father decided to step down and let the son ride the donkey alone.

Soon they found a woman who commented, “How shameless is this son! Father is walking and this fellow is happily enjoying the ride on the donkey!” So, they now exchanged their positions again and thought this is the best deal now.

Well, the trouble wasn’t over and soon they found someone else again suggesting,”Oh! Look at this selfish father! He is having fun here and letting the poor child walk like this poor donkey”.

Now, they both came up with an idea that they thought will solve all problems. They tied the donkey to a bamboo and started carrying the donkey on their shoulders. By this time, they almost had reached their village. When villagers saw them, they all started laughing at them!

They both confused and depressed reached the old man who was considered wisest in their village, stated the whole story and asked why they were criticized all the way and what was that their fault. And the old man said, “God has given you a powerful brain to use it wisely. You didn’t use it and just tried to please everybody on the way. That is why everybody is laughing at you today!”

The morel of the story was “You can’t make everybody happy. You got to use your own mind and decide what’s good for you in a given situation”

I think this story is more relevant to adults than for children. But we take these stories, read it for our kids and never really think if we really believe in these morels….

Probably these stories were designed for adults and it was expected that while teaching children, we adults will learn from these and implemented some changes in our life to make it better….

What a pity! Hardly any of us take these lessons and learn from them. I think these little stories are more for adults than children.

I think it’s time to look back in those stories, revisit those lessons and make some adjustments in our lives…

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to Yahoo BuzzAdd to Newsvine

I made a test case and started the experiment on free advise that people love to give.

I prepared a little project plan for going into business for myself. I made sure I choose a business that was small, simple and had not much to do with marketing and moving products. I prepared a document with systematic details of what it would cost, how long will I take before I start making profits, what kind of employees I would need, what would be monthly expected expenses and what revenues can I expect for couple of initial years.

Now, I took 15-20 of my close friends, colleagues and some relatives. One by one at different times I met them casually, showed them my plan seriously and told them I was very excited about this and planning to start this business. I made notes of what everyone said after seeing my plan.

At the end of the process, when I compared the responses, I was amused to find that almost all responses pointed towards only one direction! They all directly or indirectly wanted to let me know that my plan was good on paper, but it would not work! All of them cautioned that it was very difficult to succeed these days and explained me why!

I have seen similar cases with many other business owners and they had similar experience too. There are several business coaches and successful businessmen and women who had similar experiences.

With the evolution of internet, it has become easier for people to take opinions from everybody around and make their own opinion! Some people just sit, get the free opinions and do nothing about their dreams and goals because somebody who has no interest in their future gave a free opinion not to do what they are planning to do. These people find the free advises very useful as an excuse for not doing what they were supposed to do! And surprisingly, they start advising in their circle of influence free of cost too as experts!

Now, does it mean we shouldn’t take any advice from anybody and blindly do whatever we plan to do? Shouldn’t we seek expert advice?

Absolutely Yes! We should definitely take advice, but from the people who qualify for it!

So, how do we qualify?

Well! Here are two key questions we should ask to ourselves before taking advice about anything important about our life from somebody:

  1. Has this person already accomplished or on the way to accomplish what I want to accomplish in my life?
  2. Is this person capable of and willing to help me get where I want to get in my life?

If answer for any of the above questions is “No”, then RUN AWAY from this advisor… and…find the next person who can qualify.

There are so many dream stealers around who are there to tell you why you will fail in what you want to do, no matter what your plan is! They are all over and don’t mind giving free advise at the cost of your dreams and goals!

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to Yahoo BuzzAdd to Newsvine

Let’s think about a large and nice farming field. Farmer decides not to grow any crop this season. He does all the work on the ground. He cleans up the field, plows up the ground, but doesn’t put any seed onto it. He decides not to put any seed this season.

Guess what grows after few weeks on this nice land?

No brain storming required here, it will definitely grow WEEDS!

It does take a lot of effort in growing any crop on the farm. But weeds are automatic, they grow anyway. They grow with or without crops. Sometimes, a lot of efforts are required in the middle of the season in removing weeds from the crops.

Human mind is also like the farm land. We all know our brain is very powerful thing. It can process millions of things at once. It can register positive and negative both thoughts at very high rate. But more often, we don’t invest time and energy in putting positive thoughts. Result?

Negative being automatic like weeds, grows in our minds without we even realizing!

Our minds pick up negativity from the environment automatically on a daily basis. This is the exact reason why there is so much negativity in society; this is why most people fear doing anything new, exploring new opportunities, and exploring new possibilities.

Positive is not automatic. It needs conscious effort to put positive thoughts in the mind. Just like maintaining good health requires exercise, maintaining a good mental health requires conscious effort to keep mind on positive track. Our mind is the greatest asset we have… and we must give it the best food to keep it healthy just like we try to eat the best food for a healthy body. It requires work, but it’s worth the effort!

How does somebody do that?

Well, there have been so many great thinkers and philosophers speaking and writing on these very basic principles. Couple of books that I like to recommend to start with would be “Magic of thinking Big” by David Schwartz and “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill. These books helped me start the thinking in the direction of developing the mindset hungry for success and opportunities. These can be a good starting point for many who would like to give their life a direction.

Are books the only way to put mind on positive track?

Not really! There are other ways too. Disassociating from negative environment, refraining from getting into gossip, associating in a positive association regularly could of great help. In fact association combined with positive thinking books can work like magic to develop a healthy and powerful mind that can create magic in our lives!