Some from my professional diary, some from my heart, some from my perspective, some from good reads, some from observation, some from life's stories, some from imagination, some from sweet nothings of life...
At a very young age, when I failed to achieve one of my childhood dreams, my grandfather told me these golden words to me: "You can and you will." He told me these words to motivate me at a time when I was very upset at my failure. He told me to speak aloud these words just with a slight change. He told me to replace the 'You' with 'I' which makes it, "I can and I will." He told me to believe in these words and keep saying it till it gets into my system. At that time, my young mind couldn't really perceive what he exactly meant by that. But, because I believed in him, because he was one of my role models, I trusted him & told these words to myself. I am not sure though I really believed in these words or not myself. I just said it because he told me so. I wish I realized then the power of affirmations. I wish I knew then that the words that we choose to say ourselves create our realities & shape our future. There is a complete science behind this which in broader scope & terminology is known as NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming).
Here is a small diagram that depicts what NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) is all about in simplest terms.
NEURO is your thought process, LINGUISTIC is your words/language & PROGRAMMING is your behaviour which eventually leads to action/inaction, results; the creation of your life. It's like you are painting your world with these three basic things. The masterpiece that comes out of this is where you are now. A stroke of your thoughts, coloured with your words & manifested with your behaviour creates the masterpiece of your life. So, again it affirms the fact that we are the creators of our destiny, our world. And because there is no one like us, we have the power to create something unique. Our originality is our power.
Louise Hay says, "Every word you speak is an affirmation. The sub-conscious is always listening." What you say within is reflected outside. Sometimes you don't even realize it. The more often we repeat the words, it slowly starts becoming our reality. We keep practicing it and become so good at that, that we don't even realize that we are getting used to it. I was asked by my grandfather to say affirmative words as a child, yet again today I was reminded by a co-Coach to be cautious of the words & language that I have been using for myself. I wasn't even aware of the limiting words that I had been using for myself. Words that are self-defeating, self-limiting & unproductive should be shed away & replaced with words that boosts our confidence, our belief in self & words that reminds us of our potential. Words are indeed powerful. I choose positive affirmations for myself & pledge to be careful & conscious of the words that I use.
Affirmation is a word or phrase repeated to oneself to declare a certain belief or feeling. It helps the person to change the mindset & become the person you truly wish to be. How does affirmation look like? Check below. You can make your own by filling in the blank : I AM ______________________.
Last but not the least, affirmations need to be said with conviction, concentrated focus, attention & faith that you CAN & WILL achieve what you want.
Remind yourself of these words by Paul Coelho, "When you want something, the entire Universe conspires in helping you to achieve it."
"The energy of the mind is the very essence of life." - Aristotle
Have you ever wondered what is our true essence? Why is it even important to understand our essence? Because, only if you understand the essence of your existence, you will be able to live in the expression of your highest self. Now the next question is, which emotion lies at the core of our essence? There are only two primary emotions: Fear & Love. So, is the essence then fear or love? Love is the ultimate expression of your highest self. Fear is an adaptive emotion which resulted from our default coping mechanism to protect us from natural disasters & predators. Had there not been fear, we would have probably not survived. But, fear is a negative emotion. It cannot take us to the heights of our truest manifestation. It holds us back because it wants us to be in certainty, be protected, unharmed, unchallenged and unleashed. Love transcends everything. It propels you to move forward, grow & embrace all the positive emotions such as enthusiasm, empathy, curiosity, calmness, serenity, happiness, joy, passion, gratitude, kindness etc.
As you embrace love over fear, you drop every negative emotion such as depression, blame, regret, resentment, shame, insecurity, panic, jealousy, pain etc. Fear shadows us, love enables us to shine. Fear shuts us down, love helps us to open up to ourselves & to the world. When we fear, we pull back from life. But, when we are guided by the positive emotion i.e. love, we open up to all that life has to offer. This profound embracement can come only when we shift ourselves from different phases of evolution. When we love ourselves, we then move to the phase of gratitude, then to creating space for others to experience us, then to creating the space for others to love themselves & then to the mastery level of creating the space for others to move this path.
Dr. Richard Bandler, the co-developer of NLP says," You are born with only two fears:fear of falling & fear of loud noise. All the rest is learned. And it's a lot of work." We are all born with love as the essence, but over the period of our evolution & progress in life, we somehow chose fear as the most powerful guiding force. This shuts our creativity, ability to make the right decision & live life to the fullest. Here's a table that shows the different emotions that are an extension of the two forces: Fear & Love.
The choice lies with you. You want to live in fear or in love?! Both are emotions and you will feel these. But, the choice to choose one over the other lies in your hand. It is natural to be fearful, but the path of mastery lies in choosing to acknowledge the fear, be grateful for its existence because that reminds us of the choice to move towards the other side of fear i.e. love & live an exponential life.
"If you fall, stand tall & come back for more." - Tupac Shakur
Sometimes you get inspired by people & places you never expect at all. Sometimes you get positive vibes from people whom you least expect from. They teach you so many things that your entire perception changes about certain things. Today I had to address a group of people whose positions didn't exist in the organization that they had been working for so many years. These were those employees who had to transition to new roles, new jobs, new career because of the decision to downsize by their parent company. In plain words, they were laid-off. I had to address them & assist them in their transition. I expected natural reactions such as emotional outburst, anger, frustration & even venting out. But, to my surprise, they were such a matured bunch of people, that it left me pondering on the company's decision to even lay-off these employees. It's a loss for the organization & the employees for sure. I commend their leadership & how they have taken things in stride. Their acceptance, demeanour in such difficult situation, taught me many things as a professional & as a human being. It's the way we respond to situations that determines our future success & growth in life.
There's learning in every experience if you can really see through it & are open to receiving. No denying there was pain, tearful eyes; but their determination is stronger than their fears, their faith in themselves is bigger than their uncertainty & most of all, their patience is stronger than the challenge that they are thrown in. I earnestly wish them great success & hope that they all get placed in organizations wherein they can not only use their skills but grow as professionals & individuals. By looking at their energy levels, I can surely say that those organizations that would be hiring them, would be the lucky ones to have them on board. More than their skill sets, their ability to take stress, move on & attitude towards challenges is heart-warming & worth more than any other life-skills.
To me they are the peaceful warriors who accepted the challenge that came their way & chose to respond in a more creative way. They did have the other way of responding too, but they chose not to let this challenge break them but help them move forward; tiny step at a time. When you can't control what's happening, challenge yourself to control the way you respond to what's happening. That's where your power is. In this VUCA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex & Ambiguous) world, nothing is static. When you can build the agility & adaptability within you to deal with the challenge, no matter where you are, you will grow.
I dedicate today's post to these brave & courageous souls. Sending warmth, positivity & hope your way.
"Don't shut down your emotions. Embrace them. Your emotions are your internal compass telling you whether or not you are on track. Use them to help cultivate your passions or motivate you to change situations and circumstances that hold you back from achieving your goals."
The great philosopher Plato said, "Human behaviour flows from three major sources: desire, emotion & knowledge." We are sum total of what we think, feel and act. When you shut down expressing your painful side, you also loose the ability to express your joyous side. Many a times we are conditioned to not show our emotions. It is presumed as a sign of weakness. But, emotions need acknowledgment & expression. What is important is the creative expression of emotions. There are various ways to express one's emotions. Some may be in the form of journaling. I gave my emotions a creative outlet through expressive writing. Another form of expressing emotions that I recently realized is enactment of various emotions through living it in the moment & expressing it in physical form such as theatrical expression. I was so glad to have attended the workshop Ranga - Understanding Theatre by Arka Mukhopadhya. It enabled me to think and understand my ability to express my emotions in a creative way. It also connected me to varied forms of emotions that we can embody and live in the present moment to churn these emotions into creative manifestation of our essence.
There are usually 9 types of emotions called Navarasa, meaning Nine Emotions. The concept of Navarasa originates from Bharata’s Natyasastra. Look at the picture below to have an idea about the 9 emotions.
Why I brought this up is to point out one important aspect of being able to express emotions creatively. I won't go into the deeper aspects of this theatrical expression, but I want to delve deep into what we can do to express the emotions that we feel in a constructive & humanely possible way to help us grow holistically. What happens when we don't deal properly with our varied emotions. Either you break at some point or you are totally numbed which is again dangerous. Being in touch with your emotions help you to be authentic & real. It will release energy that will ground you & help you to be mindful. When you express how you really feel (in an appropriate manner), problems get solved, relationship issues get resolved, and life becomes better & easier. We hold back from expressing our emotions fearing many things. Holding back at the right moment is good; unnecessary projection may have negative implications. But, we need to release in constructive ways. We need to know how to release it, when to release it & what space do we release in.
I urge you to find creative outlets for releasing your emotions. It can be through writing, art, drama, music, talking and many more. The way you release it determines your well-being & future consequences. Some emotions are hard to articulate. When we merge our emotional & logical parts, we create something phenomenal. And that's what my invitation to you all is.
"Allow yourself to release the emotions you have struggled all your life to contain."
"Self-avoidance only grants us more of the same pain."- Anonymous
Unraveling the truth behind human behaviour fascinates me. Why people behave, act and do the way they do always intrigued me. There's something that makes sense to them, something which they can see from where they are standing but we can't.There resides something in them that makes them who they are. There's an untold story in each one of us that loses it's track; it remains as an untold script that we try to lose sight of as we grow. These get hidden under the carpet and simmers till it manifests itself in different aspects of our lives. We use mask after mask to conceal our essence.There's this need for projection to protect ourselves from harm. When you try to unmask it, you get defensive about your own self. When that wall breaks, or there is a slight crack in it, you get triggered.
We often blame the outer world for what happens within us. We think that because someone did this to us, we are hurt; because someone said something to us, we are in pain. The pain is often perceived as an emotion which is triggered by something outside of us. But, the truth is, we are triggered because there's a part inside us that gets nudged; something that we dislike about our own self or something that needs to be dealt with in the first place that creates this feeling of restlessness in us. This will only make sense to you if you are open for an authentic self-inquiry. That something can be any of these: deep seeded self-esteem issues, fear of not being worthy, not being valued, shame, guilt, not being important, self-critic....The list is endless. That's the untold story inside you; a story that you have hid from yourself & the world. The truth that you find hard to accept & acknowledge. Hence, it gets manifested in the form of pain. Every time you feel it, you brush it off. You either run away from it, ignore or completely shut down. But remember, "Pain is weakness leaving your body." If we don't feel the pain, we cannot be strong. Only when we allow pain to surface, acknowledge it; we give ourselves an empowering space to fill it with strength.
The cup has to be emptied first. Without emptying, you cannot rewrite your story. Acknowledge your untold story. Set it free for you to embrace new realities; to drop the fear & accept love for yourself & everyone. There are few steps towards breaking free from your own trap. How do you feel the pain and make it powerful enough to build you?
1. Love yourself unconditionally. Acknowledge the person you are without guilt, shame or critic. Let yourself feel the pain if any and thank yourself for bearing it all the way. There is love and only love at the core. Love that core and drop all fears.
2. Be grateful for this life and the experiences. It has made you who you are.
3. Don't judge yourself or others. Be in the profound space of acceptance.
4. Journal how you feel. Feel the pain. Let it come out. Write you untold story, partner with self and tell it.
Unexpressed emotions will manifest in other forms. You may not even realize how emotions affect us and our well being. It is important to let it loose and break free from it's shackles.
"Once we get the pain's message & follow its advice, the pain goes away." I invite you to ponder upon the untold story inside you.
I was playing this 90 day money game with Master Coach Rich Litvin & his team of professional Coaches. This was a part of the intensive that I attended this year in April at Santa Monica. What we were supposed to do was to define our financial targets for the 90 days; our target income and the amount of proposals that we would be making to our clients to attain our target. I started and as I progressed, I realized so many things. Great coaches just transform you for better. They never advise, nor instruct but in their own ways, they lead you towards your path of growth & development. They make you realize things that you are unable to see & articulate for yourself. They help you find yourself. I am citing few insights from this game that I played so that you too can learn and grow. We call this a game to bring the fun quotient in it.
1. Don't chase money. Chase purpose and let money chase.
2. Money is the fuel for sure, but not the purpose. If you focus on money, then you will get no where. You cannot have enough of anything that you really don't need.
3. Your relationship to money is wedded to your soul purpose. Consider any successful and thriving organization. They are there for their purpose and bigger commitment. Money is the by product of their service.
4. Your purpose may not pay you money instantly. But it will pay you an abundance of fulfillment, joy & love.
5. Develop an abundance mindset and drop the scarcity mentality which most people hold. An abundance mentality can help you improve your performance since with it, you're creating a lot less pressure and anxieties within your own mind.
6. Give more value than what you earn. Always focus on your service. Create something so beautiful and valuable that even money falls short to buy it.
7. Something valuable can only be perceived and experienced.
8. Service is the only & only ingredient that will determine your worth & value. More than anybody else, you will figure out your own worth by the service that you offer. You can only achieve your targets when you serve well.
9. To serve well you must connect well. To connect well, you need to first do the deep work of self-transformation. Self-transformation doesn’t happen overnight, it takes time. It is built with focus, commitment & determination. Self-transformation happens with self-realization of one’s own gifts, blind spots and thereby working in these areas. You can connect well only when you connect well to your inner core. This space is so empowering, effortless and fulfilling.
10. Without leadership depth & craftmastery, you cannot go any further.
Look at these quotes by very successful people:
Warren Buffet said,"Making money isn't the backbone of our guiding purpose; making money is the by-product of our guiding purpose. If you are doing something you love, you are more likely to put your all into it, and that generally equates to making money."
"Money is a function of value creation.The more value you create for other people, the higher the sales of your organization."- Robin Sharma
In the initial years of your career, every young professional should focus in building the knowledge base, the craftsmanship and expertise required to master that domain. For that, it is good to trade with money even. You must chose a platform for your growth & learning over money. I never worked for money. Always what mattered to me was the profile. If the profile was something that excited me and helped me to learn, I would jump into it. Many a times, I heard this from people who focused on money that I have been making the wrong choices by considering profile over money. But, today I know that I was right. I have no regret. Money starts following you when you do the work required to build yourself & master what you love. Drive for purpose and not for money. Create value and not run after money accumulation. Money is a fuel, not the purpose. You need it to keep going to reach your purpose. It's not the other way around.
PS. This post doesn't demean the importance of money, but highlights the importance of service over money.
Life & Organizational Development Coach