Focus as Competitive Advantage

I read it and found it extremely valuable..

Inspired and Happy Living...

I spent my Saturday (15th March’14) in sea world, San Diego & got to feel some of the world’s best ocean experience. Apart from learning lot about ocean life, I came across powerful line “If things are not working, Shift your Focus”

I found extremely relevant during the time when we all suffer from information overload, anxiety and stress, fragmented & scattered mind. As a result, we tend to think why don’t we get the desired result .May we are not focusing on right things, May be our focus is scattered, May be our focus is not inline with our priorities etc..As I write about it , I am also re-reading Steve Jobs’s biography by Walter Isaacson.

In summary , Steve Jobs’s life has been around 2 fundamental philosophies –Focus & Simplicity. He has been an iconic leader in terms of leveraging “FOCUS” as a competitive advantage when…

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Inspire Confidence & not Fear…

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“Fear: False Evidence Appearing Real.”Unknown

Someone asked me in my blog about my opinion of getting WORK done through an element of creating Fear in your TEAM. I thought Its a THOUGHT worth pondering. My 1 liner perspective was : It depends how you want to be viewed in your “Eulogy” – A leader with a Stick or a Great leader who always inspired & build hope within his team. Choice is “Yours”.

“Nobody can give you wiser advice than yourself.” ~Cicero

If I get deeper into it , I have had few leaders who created undue urgency or Fear of a customer to get things done. Under such circumstances , I focused more on my survival or protecting my self vs TRULY creating value for my Organization & people.

To share a personal story with you , I was flying on Airlines from US to India & we smelled “short circuit” & after a while , Pilot came out & mentioned that we may have to land on sea. I didn’t hear anything further because of screaming & anxiety inside a plane. Everyone was gripped with FEAR & I saw few people getting fainted with whole series of Chaos being created. As I was travelling alone , I just closed my eyes  & though “What has to happen will happen?” and there is no use of panic. Later, we all heard that smell of short circuit disappeared after internal power was switched off ( we were not able to watch TV or slide our chair through Remote”).

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So a simple real life example where an “Undue FEAR” was created that fainted few & created anxiety in others .Like many fears , it didn’t come true. (95% of our Fear is self created that never exist beyond our mind).

So instead of instilling a confidence in “Hope”/”Confidence” , Pilot instilled a sense of “FEAR” hence paralyzed people with massive amount of Anxiety. Instead , as a positive leader ,Pliot should have created confidence among people by instilling a sense of self –belief among passengers.

If we go little deep , our well intentioned parents or we ,as a parents, say “Don’t run, don’t fall, don’t do this , don’t embarrass me”.So we have been programmed to be fearful from an early age.

“Fears are educated into us, and can, if we wish, be educated out.” – Karl Augustus Menninger

Now a days , I am reading a lot around Neuro science. One of the interesting statistics states that 70 % of our thoughts unconsciously focused on “What we don’t want?”.So what happens in our brain is that brain releases Cortisol; that’s a fearful thing. When Cortisol is released ,its difficult to be resourceful & creative. So it’s critical that we come from a place of curiosity rather than that unconscious focus of fear, because that’s been around for a long time.

What is a result of creating FEAR?

  • Creates stress ,anxiety in you
  • It paralyzes you
  • Inhibits Performance
  • Comparison disease

Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering. — Yoda

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We all have same set of resources (billions of neurons) within ourselves. We can use them in being fearful or being creative. Your Choice!!

Many of my ex-colleagues often used to tell me that they held a dead end jobs , toxic relationship with their bosses, worked on draining projects because they thought if they quit their friends would call them “quitter”. People doubt themselves to the point that they make decision based on what others want of them ,and not what they want for themselves.

How about forgetting about what everyone else is thinking of you? Actually no one has a time to THINK of anyone. Why not just make a decisions ,and then correct them as you go along…?

 “You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” – A.A. Milne

Ignore false fear created by your leaders and do whats right for your Organization & your customers.

“Others can stop you temporarily – you are the only one who can do it permanently.” – Zig Ziglar

 What are your thoughts? How do you lead your Organization or your team? Or how do you manage your Fear?

Stay Great & Fearless….

Pratyush Singh

https://twitter.com/Pratyush_Singh1

To think confidently, act confidently. — from The Magic of Thinking Big by David J. Schwartz

 

 

Posted in Belief, Great day, Inspiration, Joyful Living, Leadership, Life, Motivation, Simplify Living | Tagged | 1 Comment

If I were 22 year Old….

Opening Picture1

Some of my lovely relatives graduating kids and few friends younger brother have been asking me about Career advice. I really find very challenging to advice anyone on Career when I don’t know enough about them. It’s an interesting time as approx 132 million students would be graduating ( China -19% , US -14% , India -11%) across the globe in coming months of 2014.Note # I am not able to trace the source of statistics however I do remember reading it in one of the leading business Magazine.

I don’t know if I would do same things that I am penning down as I feel that it is painful truth that one never does 100% of what one advises however I have learnt few valuable lessons in life that if I had applied when I was 22,my life would be on different trajectory,

I will pen down some of my own life’s lessons that I would have loved to execute #IfIWere22 .

1) Realize that what you do now, who you spend your time with, and what you study now ALL contribute to who you become. Study what you are passionate about because it can become a career that feeds your mind and your soul and GIVE you life’s greatest Fulfillment.

2) I would find what I love to do & do that as much of that as possible. I would have let my passion lead my career choice. Instead of taking established career PATH , I would have evaluated career based on my PASSION.

3) Do unknown & embrace uncertainty. Make key decision based on your inner guide/or compass & not based on what the world around you would think..

4) Life is Product of your decisions & not your conditions, and that your ability to make good decisions are ruled by your own thinking and believes about yourself and the world.Make right choices thinking “Long Term =5 or 10 years” vs instant satisfaction.

5) You shouldn’t worry about money beyond point. At least not pick up Job based on “How much?”.

6) Make Longer term Life and Career Plan. Think about 5 years, 10 year & 20 year life Plan. Visualize your death bed statement.We always overestimate how much we can achieve in 1 year & underestimate how much we can achieve in 5 or 10 years from now.

7) Shatter your Ego.Meet all kinds of people in as many places as possible.

8) Get out of comparison disease. Better to compete with one self vs competing with others that will not help you with your longer term vision & mission.

9) Write a Journal & Take time to reflect . It is hard to see where you are going if you don’t stop and take the long view every once and a while. Get comfortable with being alone. It is a sign of knowing and loving yourself. Journaling or blogging is a great way to do this

10) Don’t worry about not doing “Cool stuff” or not looking “cool”.It Just doesnt serve you.

11) Stay longer with your Goal. Remember Anders Ericsson–the father of “The 10,000 Hour Rule” that to become genius or operate at Genius level , you have to stay & Practice long enough with your Goal..

12) Learn from Challenges , Pain & disappointment. They are great teacher & can become your great story.

13) Dream 10X more & start now as “You will never be ready ”.I have postponed many things in life because I THOUGHT I was not ready.

Great pic 5th

14) Practice Happiness.World needs more happy leaders than smart /or sharp leaders.

15) Its either “YES” or “NO”. “May be “ has created lot of stress in my Head -:)

16) Be BOLD & make BOLD decisions. #IfIWere22

Hope you had fun reading some of my learning.

THANK you so very much for reading & hopefully I have been of service to you..

With lot Happiness & love

Pratyush

https://twitter.com/Pratyush_Singh1

 

Posted in #IfIWere22, Inspiration, Joyful Living, Leadership, Motivation, Purpose, Simplify Living | 4 Comments

Is having difference of Opinion Good?

Recently , One of my ex-colleague mentioned that he wants to leave his Organization as he is having massive difference of opinion with his boss. His boss is MOST stressful part of his Job and its taking toll on his health.

Not a New discussion or a New problem as 3 out every 4 people report that their boss is the most stressful part of their Job.

“Seventy-five percent of working adults say the worst aspect of their job — the most stressful aspect of their job — is their immediate boss,” As per USA Today.

“Stressful Bosses “ have been researched, analyzed & written in detail so I am not going to put another thought around it.

What caught my attention is that– we term our Bosses “Bad Boss” because of “Difference of Opinion”? If I understand from my ex-colleague issue , it was primarily due to difference of opinion so is in most other cases.

Now Is having Difference of Opinion Good?

If we THINK deeply & consciously, Its obvious that Since the beginning of human civilization, people have thought differently, acted differently & fared differently from each other. We have difference of opinion with our children, our spouse & our Parents. Do we prefix them with “Bad”? The view that we adopt for ourselves profoundly affects the way we lead life. Believing that our opinions or qualities are carved in stone – the fixed mindset creates an urgency to prove ourselves again and again.

Is it our “FIXED MINDSET” that is causing stress or “Our Boss”?

 “It were not best that we should all think alike; it is difference of opinion that makes horse races.”-Mark Twain

There are three musts that hold us back: I must do well. You must treat me well. And the world must be easy. Albert Ellis

 As my ex-colleague puts it that there is daily battle of constant criticism & negativity, no matter what we achieved, the focus is always on “What went wrong?” or “What we needed to do better?”

How about changing our “OWN” mindset vs “fixing our Boss” or “Changing Company”?

a)  One has a Choice – Someone rightly mentioned that we are Product of our choices.It depends on you how you interpret your challenges, setbacks & criticism? You can interpret them in a growth mindset that you have to stretch , expand your capabilities and change your strategy vs accumulating stress.. …Someone Rightly said “if you don’t want to be criticized ; say nothing ,do nothing & be nothing”.. Its up to you what choices you make during your interaction with your Boss.

Variety is the spice of life.

b)  Use Question to manage your Mindset -If your Boss makes a thoughtless comment, Think about 1st question that you ask your self. If you ask “Why is he talking like this?”Now your mind is looking for reason why is he talking like this & that creates stress because even if you get it , u cant change it. Now if you change your question to ” What can i do to help me feel better in such situation? or what can i do to make him or her feel better or how can i do more of what i love ?”. As your mind searches for answers , you are likely to FEEL better as you are focused on positive things. You are either looking to help yourself or help someone. Helping anyone is an awesome feeling.

History has demonstrated that the most notable winners usually encountered heart-breaking obstacles before they triumphed. They won because they refused to become discouraged by their defeats. B.C. Forbes

 c)  Be Encouraged – If you operate with high Energy, growth mindset, ignore negativity & focus on your mountain Top , you are likely to carry an “Encouraging Energy” with you that will help you manage your stress.

& one of my Best for today :The worst bankrupt in the world is the man who has lost his enthusiasm. Let a man lose everything else in the world but his enthusiasm and he will come through again to success. H.W. Arnold

 “Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” – Samuel Beckett

Imagine making a right choice ,Asking right question & remaining encouraged throughout tough interaction with your Boss ; you can gracefully get rid of your “stress”

I have my own struggle, my own set of challenges, my own share of Bad bosses however  reflection through journaling help me manage my situation well.I get super excited & elated when many learns my from my experience.

 Do let me know your thoughts about above & how you manage your similar challenges.

Stay Great,

Pratyush

www.pratyushsinghblog.wordpress.com

https://twitter.com/Pratyush_Singh1

We have become not a melting pot but a beautiful mosaic. Different people, different beliefs, different yearnings, different hopes, different dreams.”

~Jimmy Carter

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The Power or Value of “WHY”

The Value of “WHY” > The combined value of “What” & “How”.

I was re-reading some of the marked portion of Steve Jobs’s biography by Walter Isaacson. One of the fun part of re-reading some of my favorite books is that I get different thoughts or perspective depending on my “Flow” in life. Of late , I have started to THINK deeply about  – “WHY” I am doing what I am doing?

As I go deep with my past professional journey, I can easily relate that every single Organization, or every single person know with 100% certainty of what they so. Most of the highly competent would know how they do it, whether they call its core competency or Value Proposition. But  very ,very few people or Organization (that I have worked with or have read about them) know why they do what they do.

It’s a fairly strong statement and I don’t intent to downplay anyone however you can go ahead ask your CXO or some of the leaders you worked for or some of the executive in your Organization as to “WHY you do what you do?” or “Why they do what they do?”.

I have asked some of my business leaders & some of my managers or mentors, I usually have got response such as “We are working to get to $ X billion” or “To make money for our stakeholders” or “To server our customers” or “To make Profit” or “Because our customers are asking us to do?” or “To meet my Manager’s Goals & Objective” etc..

Most of the above is “Result”. Indeed ,it’s always a result. By “why” , I mean; What’s your Cause? Whats your Purpose? Why does your Organization exist?

Reason I named my “Inspired and Happy Living” because I strongly believe that the inspired leaders and the inspired Organizations – all think, act & deliver inside out or their inside out is in line with Outside in (Thought Borrowed from our own legendry Mahatma Gandhi).

As I was reading Steve Job’s biography by Walter Isaacson , I think Apple focused strongly on “WHY” & its “belief” system.The way Apple communicated its belief is awesome – “Everything we do , we believe in challenging the status quo.We believe in thinking differently.The way we challenge the status quo is by making our Product beautifully designed,simple to use & user friendly.We just happen to make great computers.Want to buy one?”

There is so much of “emotional WHY” in the message. People don’t buy computers or iPhones because Apple is making them, they are buying because they know “WHY” apple is making iPhones or computers. People’s “WHY” or “Belief” is so very much in line with the “belief” or “Why”of Apple…

Imagine the world of business where we start connecting “Why” of business and consumers and Employees.

“Why” or “belief” drives behavior where as “What” doesn’t. I was reading an article where it mentioned level of productivity of an organization will go up 10 fold if Organizations were to start hiring ONLY 10% of people who believe in the organization’s believe system.

What are your thoughts? Do you think about your “Why”? Do let me know your opinion.

Deep Respect & Gratitude for reading my articles or following my Blog.

Quote # Paulo Coelho puts it interestingly that ” when you want something & you know the why you want , whole universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.” 

Stay Great & Humble

Pratyush

https://twitter.com/Pratyush_Singh1

http://www.pratyushsinghblog.wordpress.com

With Slight modification # Waiting is painful. Forgetting is painful. But not knowing which to do and why to do are the worst kind of suffering.” 

― Paulo Coelho 

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Treat setbacks with kindness

Quote # Someone rightly said that Negativity dominates our life 70% of the time & has a stronger impact on human body & mind than the positive.

I have been travelling & meeting different people not only of my profession but also from many different & diversified professions. On 4th April, as I finished my run of 14 km ( one of my personal best for 10 km) at a very beautiful Miles square park in Fountain Valley-CA, I came across a gentleman who was hitting trees with his legs. Out of curiosity, I happened to ask him “what’s troubling you?”.He mentioned “his setback” and was possibly looking for helping hand. I asked him “how about having conversation about your setback?” He eagerly agreed to it & asked me “do I have setbacks? & if yes, how do I handle it”

We ended up having 90 min conversation; I will put down my own learning & experience of coaching someone who is going through deep rooted setback.

We started with some deep breathing & walking in the nature. We took our conversation to whole new different level. I asked him how about doing exactly opposite to what he was doing? I.e. Treat Setback with Kindness & Respect vs cribbing about it.

We agreed to think together to have a business model or Life model for handling “Setbacks”.

Setbacks are part of our experience and growth. I have not seen any successful human being with zero setbacks. Instead Size of your success is proportional to Size of your Setbacks. Do we ever observe how we deal our setbacks. I have always hated myself for every setback until I realize that “setbacks” have contributed most to my growth than anything else. How can you hate something that is helping you grow? I started to embrace, love my setback.I have meditated & journal over my setback..

Quote # In order to heal your setback, you need to feel your setback.

We discussed about an interesting statistics that negative impact of setback in our work is three times as powerful in affecting motivation than positive Progress. It’s just easier to remember the bad stuff that has happened to you during the day than the good.

Our discussion shifted to WHY our brains have such a negativity bias? As we took a deep breath & reflected on it , it seems brains are wired to pay more attention to negative experience. Our mind is constantly scanning for setbacks, threat, fear & catching people doing things wrong. This causes spiral of thoughts & negative feedback loop that doesn’t reflect reality.

Next ,we looked at the nature of setbacks, and what we can do to make them a positive part of our life.If we believe enough, we can find a simple model to manage our setbacks.

He mentioned that everytime he gets setback , it puts him into vicious cycle of shame. I respectfully mentioned that I have a different opinion I.e what you resist persists so why not embrace your setback & treat them with Respect.Atleast ,lets make an attempt..

We agreed that lets figure out some simple steps together to manage our Setbacks. How would you manage your setbacks? I would do following below to address my Setbacks..

  • Expect setbacks – Lets accept that growth & change take time, and often frequent tries. So instead of avoiding or running away from your setbacks , why not welcome them with respect & learn from it?
  • Design your self-care Model – I run , meditate, do yoga, journal or listen or read inspirational books.These Blissiplines help me lot & can certainly help him & others..
  • Shift in Perspective – By reacting negative to our setback , we make our setback stronger. Moment we take responsibility and embrace our Setback , We become more powerful, stronger and begin to see dramatic growth in our self.
  • Practice Kindness & Gratitude – Someone right said that any day above the ground is a great day. So why focus about our setback vs focus on all great things that we have.
  • Identify warning sign of your setback & start acting on it immediately. The sooner you can catch yourself in a setback, the sooner you can get yourself back on track.
  • Remind my self of my Big 5 & life goal.The moment I re-look at my values & life goal , I get happier..
  • Realize you’re human. We’re all imperfect; it’s part of being human. Remind yourself that setbacks happen to everyone.  It’s okay to make mistakes. You’re not alone.
  • Seek out support – If you’re feeling badly about yourself for “screwing up,” your first instinct may be to hide in a hole. But this is exactly the time when you need to reach out to your support system. Go to your inner circle , mastermind group , coach or mentor..I often remind myself that life is not linear. Don’t think you have to progress in a perfectly linear fashion.
  • Have a positive affirmation for different occasions. For Setback , lets remind our self that “Be not afraid of going slowly, be afraid only of standing still.”So move on.

It was a great conversation, a great learning & my 1st experience of coaching a complete stranger. In the end, I did feel great that I could impact someone’s life positively.

I got a great satisfaction, fulfillment & learning from the interaction. Imagine if we all begin to help each other with our positive attitude, a world will be far better place.

Someone rightly said that we need more Positive leader than Smart leader.

Thank you Thank you & Thank you for reading.

Have an Awesome life ahead.

Pratyush

https://twitter.com/Pratyush_Singh1

Awesome Quote #  “The larger the monetary reward, the poorer the performance. – money doesn’t motivate us, at all, instead emotions do.”

 

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How do u convert your bad day to a GREAT day?

I am extremely positive, enthusiastic & energetic human being. Few days are not as great as rest of the other days. Sometime , I am surprised why my brain give more focus to “few bad or average days”  vs many “Great days”. One of my approach to tackle my own issues is to journal and blog so that I can continue to deepen my own values of living every moment with positivity.

Quote #  “If you’re in a bad situation, don’t worry it’ll change. If you’re in a good situation, don’t worry it’ll change.” – John A Simone

 While meditating, I thought about how to convert “any average day” to “an awesome day” or how to minimize the effect of your average day?Following are some of the thoughts that came to my mind. Please feel free to add “Your Thoughts” so that we have system or tools to fill our life with more awesome days.

  • Whenever you get a slight trigger of Negative thought, Remind and tell yourself  “This is a negative thought, how can I change it into a positive one?”. At times catching your negative thoughts early in the cycle reduces its impact.
  • Run or Meditate – Yesterday (4th April), running was not part of my schedule however I ended up running 90 min just to get over my average day & possibly convert to an awesome day. It did help me to a great deal after 90 min of my running plus 15 min of meditation.
  • Deep breathing – When things aren’t going well with me , I just take a few very deep breaths. It helps my mind to calm down & reduces effect of negative thoughts.
  • Gratitude Journal – Journal or blogging is a great way to release stress and anxiety since it helps you focus on whats going well in your life vs focus on “tiny negative” thoughts that is occupying significant part of your head. Write it even if no one is going to read it, the fact that you wrote it down will convert your “average day” to a “better day”.
  • Positive Thoughts – Reading positive thoughts can reverse your negative thinking to more powerful positive thinking.”Positive Thoughts “ have great power. I have been posting “Positive /powerful thoughts” on my facebook or twitter account from last 3 years. It not only help me remain positive but also motivate my lovely friends.
  • Think of one of your friend who is very inspiring & call him/her. Extremely powerful technique.
  • Help someone.
  • Get into solitude & start laughing
  • Ask some of the VERY fundamental question to your self.
        • Will it matter 5 years from now?
        • Has anyone died here?
        • What is the Opportunity here?
        • What is one single, small step that can turn around your situation?
  • Learned Optimism – Napoleon Hill mentioned it very powerfully that “Thoughts become things or reality”. If we continue to think negative thoughts, they are likely to become reality.
  • Visualization – Visualize your future 2-5 years from now depending on your Life Goal. It activates your creative subconscious which will start generating creative ideas to achieve your goal. Athletes call this visualization process “mental rehearsal,” and they have been using it since the 1960s when they learned about it from the Russians.

I am going to Practice above more diligently and repeat my own “affirmation” whenever I come across an average thought to strengthen my motivation, and program my subconscious mind by sending an order deep within to convert my THOUGHT to an AWESOME Thought.

How are you planning to manage your bad day or your average thought?Many Thanks for reading & responding.

With Great Respect & Gratitude

Pratyush

Quote #  “Peace begins with a smile.” ~Mother Theresa…Lets continue to smile & spread it to as many soul as we can.

Posted in Belief, Great day, Inspiration, Joyful Living, Leadership, Life, Motivation, Simplify Living | 1 Comment