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Once upon a time in a kingdom far away lived a barber named Pandu. Now Pandu had a simple life that is grooming the king. One day while he was going to the neighboring village through the forest he heard a voice from the tree “Would you like to become rich?”. He did not heed to the disturbance and kept walking. He heard the voice again. This time he turned around to see a Yakshini(sorceress) on the tree. She asked him again until he answered – “How?” The Yakshini said, all he had to do was turn back home and he would find pots of gold in his house.He fell for it now and quickly went home to find seven pots, six of them were filled with gold and the seventh one was empty and had a note in it. The note said – “Fill this one pot with gold and all the pots are your”. Pandu was in a dilemma for a moment but greed got the best of him.

He took all the gold in the house and put it in the pot, he sold all expensive things he had in his house and got gold coins and placed them in the pot as well. The pot was not even quarter full. He then decided to cut down his expenses by eating less and taking extra work outside the king’s palace. Whatever he would save he converted them to gold and placed them in the pot.

The king had been noticing Pandu for a while and one day asked him – “Pandu, you don’t look very well. Did you by any chance meet the Yakshini in the forest?” Pandu was surprised and told the king the whole story.

Pandu: ” How did you know I met the Yakshini? ”

King: ” You were a jolly good fellow and now look at you, you are tired and not focused on your work. And in the past I also had a similar experience.”

Pandu: ” Oh Great King, guide me. Tell me what you did.”

King: ” After reading the note, I realized it was a mistake so I went to the Yakshini and asked her nicely to take back all the pots and so she did. What a relief it was!!”

On hearing this Pandu went straight to the Yakshini and pleaded her to take the pots and so SHE DID!!!

On reaching home Pandu saw that along with her 6 pots of gold he had lost the pot which he had filled going through so much pain.

Moral: There are no shortcuts in life, if you have to take the stairs of hard-work. Do It. Have some patience and faith.

Presence of mind

Recently I saw the movie SULLY in which Tom Hanks character show how you can turn a situation around and not panic if you have a good presence of mind. This reminds me of a story which I would like to share.

In a small Italian town, hundreds of years ago, a small business owner owed a large sum of money to a loan-shark. The loan-shark was a very old, unattractive looking guy who happened to fancy the business owner’s daughter.

He decided to offer the businessman a deal that would completely wipe out the debt he owed him. However, the catch was that he would only wipe out the debt if he could marry the businessman’s daughter. Needless to say, this proposal was met with a look of disgust.

The loan-shark said that he would place two pebbles into a bag, one white and one black.

The daughter would then have to reach into the bag and pick out a pebble. If it was black, the debt would be wiped, but the loan-shark would then marry her. If it was white, the debt would also be wiped, but the daughter wouldn’t have to marry the loan-shark.

Standing on a pebble strewn path in the businessman’s garden, the loan-shark bent over and picked up two pebbles. Whilst he was picking them up, the daughter noticed that he’d picked up two black pebbles and placed them both into the bag. He then asked the daughter to reach into the bag and pick one.

The daughter naturally had three choices as to what she could have done:
1.Refuse to pick a pebble from the bag.
2.Take both pebbles out of the bag and expose the loan-shark for cheating.
3.Pick a pebble from the bag fully well knowing it was black and sacrifice herself for her father’s freedom.

She drew out a pebble from the bag, and before looking at it ‘accidentally’ dropped it into the midst of the other pebbles. She said to the loan-shark;

“Oh, how clumsy of me. Never mind, if you look into the bag for the one that is left, you will be able to tell which pebble I picked.”

The pebble left in the bag is obviously black, and seeing as the loan-shark didn’t want to be exposed, he had to play along as if the pebble the daughter dropped was white, and clear her father’s debt.

Moral of the story: It’s always possible to overcome a tough situation through out of the box thinking, and not give in to the only options you think you have to pick from. No matter what the situation, only by being conscious we can overcome any situation

Positive Thinking

positive thinking

Many years ago two salesmen were sent by a British shoe manufacturer to Africa to investigate and report back on market potential.

The first salesman reported back, “There is no potential here – nobody wears shoes.”

The second salesman reported back, “There is massive potential here – nobody wears shoes.”

This simple short story provides one of the best examples of how a single situation may be viewed in two quite different ways – negatively or positively.

We could explain this also in terms of seeing a situation’s problems and disadvantages, instead of its opportunities and benefits.

When telling this story its impact is increased by using exactly the same form of words (e.g., “nobody wears shoes”) in each salesman’s report. This emphasizes that two quite different interpretations can be made of a single situation.

Micro expressions

Micro_expression

I was doing some research on non verbal communication and came across micro expressions. Micro expressions are very brief facial expressions, lasting only a fraction of a second. They occur when a person either deliberately or unconsciously conceals a feeling. Seven emotions have universal signals: anger, fear, sadness, disgust, contempt, surprise and happiness. We come across non verbal cues everyday at work and at home, only if we had the knowledge to decipher them, can we use it to our advantage. Learning to spot micro expression can help us to:

  1. Improve emotional intelligence.
  2. Develop your capacity for empathy.
  3. Spot concealed emotions
  4. Improve relationships.
  5. Understand others.
  6. Recognize and better manage your own emotions.
  7. Develop social skills.

You can take the test here to check how good you are at recognizing micro expressions.

Simplicity

simplicity

One of Japan’s biggest cosmetics company received a complaint that a consumer had bought a soap box that was empty.

Immediately the authorities isolated the problem to the assembly line, which transported all the packaged boxes of soap to the delivery department. For some reason, one soap box went through the assembly line empty.

Management asked its engineers to solve the problem. Post-haste, the engineers worked hard to devise an X-ray machine with high resolution monitors manned by two people to watch all the soap boxes that passed through the line to make sure they were not empty.

No doubt, they worked hard and they worked fast but they spent a whopping amount to do so.

But when a workman was posed with the same problem, he did not get into complications of X-rays, etc but instead came out with another solution.

He bought a strong industrial electric fan and pointed it at the assembly line. He switched the fan on, and as each soap box passed the fan, it simply blew the empty boxes out of the line.

Moral: Always look for simple solutions. Devise the simplest possible solution that solves the problem. So, learn to focus on solutions not on problems. “If you look at what you do not have in life, you don’t have anything; if you look at what you have in life, you have everything”

Try a power pose

power pose

Body language not only affects how others see us, but it may also change how we see ourselves. I was listening to this Ted talk by Amy Cuddy, where she mentions how our bodies govern how we think and feel about ourselves. Everyone talks about the importance of “body language,” but few people understand how much of an impact it actually has — not just in the way others perceive us, but in terms of how we actually perform. Certain “power poses” immediately change our body chemistry. And these changes affect the way we do our job and interact with other people. Our bodies do change our mind.

Take away from this session: Next time when you are going for an interview or a meeting where you will be evaluated, try a “power pose” for 2 mins before you start and see the difference for yourself.

When you pretend to be powerful, you are more likely to actually feel powerful.

Think about it!!!

Personality Type

Personality Type

Personality is the combination of traits that make a person who they are.

I came across this amazing free Quistic Personality test questionnaire which got me into thing about how being aware of our personality helps. So let me put down 3 reasons of how it’s helpful to know your personality.

You can learn to manage your energy

It helps in identifying your natural strengths. Everyone does best when they are working with their innate strengths.  Working in our strengths also gives us energy and enjoyment.

Self awareness

Knowing your personality type can help you in supporting your personal growth. achieving life balance, self awareness and creative endeavors.

Helps you find the right career  

Knowing your personality type helps you know your preferences better, avoid conflicts, appreciate diversity and improve decision making abilities.

Think about it !!!

Direction

cheshire-cat

I stumbled upon this conversation between Alice and the cat while I was researching about direction.

“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?” – Alice
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.
“I don’t much care where–” said Alice.
“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,” said the Cat.
“–so long as I get SOMEWHERE,” Alice added as an explanation.
“Oh, you’re sure to do that,” said the Cat, “if you only walk long enough.”

This seemed to me like a perfect example to understand why having a direction is so important. I know it’s practically impossible to know everything before hand. But if you wait until you have all the information, life will pass you by in the mean time. Do some research, ask some questions, gain some practical experience, then make a decision, then act on it. If you don’t have a direction, why have a rudder or a steering wheel. Without direction, you are adrift in the stream of life, subject to all the problems, and completely without recourse. If you have a direction, you can always change your mind and decide to portage around the rapids.

Think about it !!!

Truth

Infinite doubt

A boy ‘n a girl were playing together. The boy had a collection of marbles. The girl had some sweets with her. The boy told the girl that he will give her all his marbles in exchange for her sweets. The girl agreed. The boy kept the biggest ‘n the most beautiful marble aside ‘n gave the rest to the girl. The girl gave him all her sweets as she had promised. That night, the girl slept peacefully. But the boy couldn’t sleep as he kept wondering if the girl had hidden some sweets from him the way he had hidden his best marble.
If you don’t give your hundred percent in a relationship, you’ll always keep doubting if the other person has given his/her hundred percent.

Think about it !!!

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