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...
"I never worry about action, but only inaction." - Winston Churchill
We are intellectually so equipped, but we slip into doing things that don't serve us and then sit in guilt and shame for not doing what we are supposed to do or even for doing things that we didn't want to do. Internet is flooded with information, but yet we live in inaction and regret. Why?!
OUR SUBCONSCIOUS MIND SHOULD VISCERALLY ACCEPT, BELIEVE AND OWN OUR GOALS TO TRULY MANIFEST THEM
Before answering the question: "What to do when you have lot of clarity at conscious level but refrain from taking actions?"; I would like to give you some context around conscious mind and subconscious mind. Our conscious mind is the thinking mind/rational mind that has only 5% control over our brain. Rest 95% of our brain's control lies in our subconscious mind that is the powerhouse of all the memories, beliefs, perceptions, patterns that we have formed & stored over the period of time. Sigmund Freud, Father of Psychoanalysis said that our subconscious mind continues to influence our behaviours. So the crux is this, it is not sufficient to just have clarity at the conscious level but our subconscious mind should viscerally accept, belief and own our goals to truly manifest them. Tapping the subconscious mind is the key. NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) talks in detail about this aspect and I wouldn't dive deep into this in this blog. You may read my related blog on befriend-your-subconscious-mind-to-reach-your-highest-potential.html for more insights around this.
If you really want to find an answer, you have to go to the root of the problem and uncover the truth. You have to raise your awareness around why you are doing what you are doing. This will enable second order change and transformation. When you choose to increase your awareness, you have enabled the resolution of the problem because now you know the 'why' and then you can easily figure out 'what' to do and 'how' to do. Uncovering what the problem is, is paramount for a long lasting transformation! How to raise our awareness is the main question now? You can start by asking yourself these questions to find out why you are not taking actions even if you know that these are important & will support you to achieve your goals:
1. Do you really have a powerful intention? Is your why powerful enough to move you to actions? Be honest and answer this question. You may choose to articulate your intention, craft it and write it down in a piece of paper and ask why you want this. What will you see, hear and feel when you fulfill your intention? Do you feel viscerally connected to this? How does your body respond to this? You may use the visualization technique from NLP. More about this in another blog.
2. What are your beliefs about your own abilities? Is there a part inside you that feels that you are not worthy enough to achieve that goal or you don't deserve to attain that? Do you feel less equipped to fulfill that intention? What perfect system have you created for yourself to remain who you are? Do read this blog of mine to reflect on this aspect :what-perfect-system-have-you-created-for-yourself-to-remain-who-you-are.html.
3. What are your gains being in this current situation? To attain your goals, there has to be a change in your current state. How is your mind perceiving that change?
4. What are the pains of not attaining that goal? Does the pain of not having the goal outweigh the gains of being in the current state? If there is no pain, then the change will not happen because of the perceived gains in the present moment?
5. What can you do to retain the gains of current moment while you attain your goals?
6. You may choose to go deeper and look at your values, things that are important to you. Also, an assessment of your role models, who you are and what you uphold will give you a clear picture about the conflict in any area that is holding you back from moving ahead.
Do check out this related blog: why-our-intentions-dont-get-fulfilled.html.
ASSESSING YOUR HABITUAL PATTERNS
After all of these, you may now assess your habitual patterns. What are the habits you fall back on when you are stressed? These can be good as well as bad habits. Remember that every habit that we have formed over the years, fulfilled some intrinsic need in us that we wanted at some point. Over time, these became a part of our lives and we have hard times letting them go because we focus on removing the bad habit and not uncovering the need that is associated with it. As Tony Robbins says, there are six needs in human beings & in his words:
It is rightly said that our why drives us to start, but it is our habits that keep us going. Forming success habits, replacing old/not serving habits with new ones keeping in mind the need associated with it, will help. Research says that it takes 21 to 60 days to replace old habits with new ones. This is a consistent process and requires effort on our part.
Be mindful of the thoughts that you are feeding to your mind everyday. Our subconscious mind doesn't know what is right, wrong, true, real, unreal. What you feed it with deep believe is what it believes and manifests. So, if in the background there is a voice that is critical and doubting, you are eventually going to attract that.
Have a structure of success, an accountability partner that will support you in attaining your goals.
Reward yourself every time you take a tiny step forward, however tiny that may be. The initial push is little difficult. Once the moment is set, you just get going.
Being consistent is yet another important thing. Never skip taking actions. The moment when you feel like giving up, is the moment you need to stick around the most because powerful insight/learning is on its way.
Last but not the least, figure out a way unique to you to attain success. Once you are aware of everything, you know what needs your attention. You then carve out a plan that will support you.
Leaving you with this thought: What did you come up with after reading this blog? Do share your insights and breakthroughs.
Love, light & gratitude,
"Your life is a story of transition. You are always leaving one chapter behind while moving on to the next."
Transition simply means a change from one state to another desired state. We all fear transition because any change is uncertain in terms of the experience & the outcome. It requires one to move out from a comfort zone and play full out to experience something that is different and uncommon. Sometimes we choose transition and sometimes life gifts us certain circumstances and experiences that require us to transition to a different level. I see this as an opportunity for us to grow to our next level. Some transitions are unexpected and uncomfortable when we are not ready to accept that sudden change. In today's VUCA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous) world, change is certain and so we must be prepared for any kind of transition. The more prepared we are, the more easy the journey becomes & surety of an effective outcome. The moment we get stuck in rigidness and don't embrace flexibility, that's the moment we indirectly say NO to any change which might be really beneficial for our growth. I would like to categorize transition into two broad categories:
1. Involuntary transition
2. Voluntary transition
1. Involuntary transition: Any change in life which we voluntarily have not chosen but bestowed to us due to circumstantial changes or is situation based is involuntary transition. This is one of the most challenging transition because we have no prior acceptance to this but it's like a sudden jolt to us that is imposed and leaves us wondering what next to do and not to do. This phase has the probability of taking us to a victim mode if we aren't cautious. Many people break-down during this phase and becomes a victim. This requires one to go through a grieving process wherein you first just acknowledge what has happened, take charge of the emotions, let them out in creative ways; accept the reality and then chalk out the next moves to move forward. As an example, when an organization decides to downsize, many employees get affected during this involuntary transition. Although this has nothing to do with the employee personally, but due to the common human dynamics, one has the tendency to take this personally and hold grudges for putting one in an uncomfortable and undesirable situation. Hence, an employee goes through a turmoil and shows different reactions based on the personality type. Some withdraw, some run away from the reality and some become resentful and stuck. All these are natural reactions of the involuntary transition phase. More than the situation, the perception of the situation affects the overall morale and so the actions and the results.
2. Voluntary transition: Any change that is initiated by us and majorly taken to experience ourselves in new ways in any sphere of our lives is voluntary transition. This is something that is exciting and fearful but this comes with a lot of positive emotions because an individual chooses this unlike something that is imposed upon. This transition is more like wearing the creator's hat and the other one is like being victimized. Examples of this transition may be: starting a new role, a shift from an individual role to a leadership role; starting something which one is passionate about; starting on a new journey on self-discovery and possibilities of creating what's not there and what one never thought of and many more.
No matter what form the transition might be, it requires few common things for its success:
The potential of a person never fades, but we do loose the form based on what we have decided to perceive about what has happened. A positive frame of mind will enable positive actions and so will the results be positive. But a negative frame of mind will block us from having access to our creativity & our resourcefulness. And so the actions and results will match to the state of our mind. It is important that we keep challenging ourselves to do things that make us uncomfortable, make us realize that we have immense possibilities, and that the power lies not in the situation but in the way we take it. Any situation that breaks us is something that needs retrospection of ourselves because that's a direct message to us about our internal dialogue that we are having. More a person has self-awareness and a powerful intention, more he/she can lead oneself from a victim state to a creator state and that makes all the difference. A shift in the state of our mind is one of the most vital, critical, simple yet difficult thing to do. It's a choice, a habit, a practice and a mindset that needs nurturing, care and unfolding.
Inviting you all to a joyous journey of transition from where you are to where you truly want to be.
Love & light,
"Jobs fill your pocket, but the way you look at your job, fills your soul."
In a recent podcast, one of the HR leaders gave a beautiful acronym for the future of work: M A P (Mastery, Purpose and Autonomy). Today I will focus on PURPOSE in my blog since this is something that is very important and many professionals I meet, come up with this statement now and then: "I don't find meaning & purpose in my role!" To that I say, welcome! I was in the same space and I didn't find meaning and purpose too in my role. To me it was mechanical, routine and purposeless. Yes, because I looked at it that way. My perspective was fixed and I saw only that side of the role. In fact the reality was that some rigidness had to shift inside of me; some aspects had to be embraced; some old thoughts had to be discarded and many more. But, I am glad that I went through that transition which eventually brought me closer to my purpose and gave meaning to my work. I have realized that there is no perfect role/career. It is entirely how you see it and how well you connect with what you see. Once you are in sync with that, you have found your purpose and meaning.
Almost a year back, there was a point when I wanted to give up what I was doing because I felt I couldn't add value and didn't find meaning & purpose in my role. But today, I am doing the same work and find deep meaning & purpose in what I am doing. And with that realization, the way I serve my customer community has shifted massively. With that realization, I have grown as a professional and my capacity to give has increased manifold; I don't get drained, I become rejuvenated after every session. How is this possible when I am doing the same work; everything remains the same except for the way I relate to it and the way I look at it?! Do note that this is absolutely different from a sense of not being able to connect yourself with the role. When you can connect with the role, when you get a sense of being able to make a difference; yet when challenges come; if you get a kick inside to give up; that's the time you need to sit in that discomfort and ask: Is meaning & purpose missing in my role or I am not being able to see and figure out meaning & purpose in my role due to my inability to break free from normal ways of doing things? Am I getting bored with the role or the way I am performing the role?
YOUR MEANING & PURPOSE IS HIDDEN IN THE WAY YOU PERCEIVE YOURSELF IN RELATION TO WHAT YOU ARE DOING
Today, as I was coaching one of my clients and I asked this question to him: What is that one thing that you are proud of from your career? The reply impressed me and reaffirmed my believe in my client. The reply was: "I am proud of the fact that I am contributing towards maintaining the security of our nation, I am serving & protecting my nation. My purpose is to ensure that every product that I scrutinize is 100% quality proof and efficient enough to enable our soldiers to protect us from external threats and invasion." Can you guess what my client's role is? He is a embedded testing professional. This is what gets him going and gives a sense of purpose which is: service to the nation, protecting the nation. Look at the beautiful interpretation of his job! Had he considered himself just as a testing professional, his drive would have been less. He would have looked at the same scenario as something very routine and boring. But, the fact that he looks at it from an absolutely new angle and new perspective is what makes him stand apart. No wonder that he is a high performer, a great leader in his field and making a dent in the Universe. Today, I learnt a beautiful lesson from my client. He has reaffirmed my belief in the fact that it is how you look at your role and your contribution towards that role that makes all the difference.
THE ORDER IS: WHY, WHAT AND HOW
This also reminded me of John F. Kennedy’s stories. It was the story about when he visited NASA and saw a janitor mopping up the floor. Kennedy asked him what his job was at NASA and the gentleman said, “I’m helping send a man to the moon.” Look at the difference and the way one perceives the thing. This is exactly the "WHY" that Simon Sinek, the renowned motivational speaker, organizational consultant & the best selling author of the book, "Start With Why" talks about. When your WHY is so profound, your results are bound to be extra-ordinary. It's never the other way around! The order isn't this: How, What and Why; but this: Why, What and How you do it matters & makes all the difference.
FIND MEANING AND PURPOSE IN YOUR ROLE
So, let's uncover how to find meaning & purpose in your role? Well, do you still need to uncover or you have already figured out by reading the script above?! You are the best person to uncover your answers. All you need is to reflect on the following questions:
Do feel free to write to me or comment with answers that came up for you. I invite you to challenge your thinking, the way you look at things and how you conclude it.
Love & light,
Recreating oneself is a tough process but not impossible. One must be prepared to go through a process that is rigorous and at times difficult to fully trust. It’s like growing up even when you think you are grown. And to grow up to that level, you must embrace the new you. When you shed your old skin and get into something new, it feels strange and weird. The physiological changes in the body are difficult to decipher. The first change occurs inside, creating a void/a space to embrace the “all new”. There is resistance from the conscious mind because it becomes uncertain about what is happening. You lose your grip and control! It’s made to traverse through a new process & so resists the change strongly because it becomes uncomfortable with what is happening inside. It gets lost, confused and doubts the process. It feels like you are not you anymore. The way you used to be; is evolving, changing; your reactions are getting different, your responses are becoming different. There’s a tug of war happening inside between your evolving self and your old self. You know that you need to change and accept the newness, but our rational mind always pitches in to make us aware of the uncertainty and the unknown that we are jumping to. This mind is there to protect us from any pain, oblivious of the fact that the real liberation lies in growth and not in comfort zone that we very dearly hold on to.
I am going through a process where I am embracing a new me inside of me. A new person is evolving, and I can see so much resistance in me to embrace this that I have chosen to shut myself up. But, as I do this, I am very aware that my resistance is futile and temporary. It’s my old way of showing my disapproval of something that I know is good for me but don’t want to embrace because it is challenging and will take me to a different trajectory that I have no idea about. May be someday I will look back and have a good laugh at my stupidity. Every growth is beautiful and very much required. Without growth, there’s no life and with no life, it is equivalent to dying internally and just carrying a soulless body.
When you commit yourself to living in the zone of genius, you have no other option but to trust the process. And as I sat down to trust the process of evolution completely, that’s when I came across the emotions running within me. There’s anger, there’s sadness and beneath that, there is fear of losing my old self, my old identity that I had projected and wore for so long. I am sad to shed it, yet I am happy to embrace a more authentic me. There is mixed emotion.
When things become uncomfortable, that’s when we know that we are connecting to our real self, our essence and evolving as a person. There are many aspects within us which we find it hard to acknowledge and accept. Many a times we don’t even know the truth because we aren’t aware to that extent to be able to crack the puzzle of pain that lay in front of us. The easiest and comfortable way to get rid of all of this, is to run away from the pain and mask it with layers of lies, pacify it with distraction, to the point of numbing it, so that we pretend not knowing what is happening. But, to take the cut to our next level, we must bear the pain, we must force ourselves through the process; we have to take that leap and jump in the abysmal of the unknown; let ourselves be there sitting in that transformation without distracting and running away.
Many a times, we fear in life about things that may not be true. Hence, life is but a journey of not changing others, blaming situations, pointing fingers externally but discovering ourselves; the known and the unknown, the good and the ugly, the weaknesses and the strengths and many more; yet having the courage to love ourselves even after knowing the truth. Life is a beautiful journey that we must embark to find ourselves and the potential hidden in us, to leave behind a mark as powerful as our discovery. I have been resisting myself from this discovery; but I finally give in to the unknown and jump into the dark pit of the unknown because I have the trust in the Universe’s ways. After all, we are noting but a drop from the vast ocean; we are nothing but a powerful force that will anyways one day merge with the Supreme. What’s there to fear, hide and be worried about?! Everything is taken care of. The greatest demon is the demon inside us that doesn’t allow us to experience this infinity of love dwelling inside us. The day you can overcome this fear, that day you can say that you are the victorious person on earth. Shading one layer after layer requires commitment and trust. And I finally embrace shading one more layer. Thank you, life!
Love & light, Priyanka
"Problems can become opportunities when the right people come together." - Robert Redford
How do I find the right person for my team? This is a question that haunts many entrepreneurs, in particularly the ones that are all set to build their team for the first time. After having spend almost a decade in hiring people and understanding their patterns, after having even analysed my own patterns of leaving jobs after some point & after coaching corporate professionals transitioning to entrepreneurial roles, I did ask myself these questions, "What does it take to build a great team? Why some people stay and some don't? Even if they stay, why do they not stay for long? What drives them? What are their needs? Are they aligned?" etc. It's very easy to put a tag on a person as job hoppers, low performers, put them under PIP (Performance Improvement Plan) etc. We must take responsibility for this judgment and stereotyping. Somewhere our inability to understand things in-depth plays a big role. The fact is, just because they aren't meeting your aspirations, fulfilling your criteria of performance, success and creativity; doesn't make them failures, low performers or whatever you may call it. If you are to really select the right person for your team, you have to understand what's deep down there that comes into play. You have to master the art of hiring the right person! You fail here and everything falls apart!
It's very important for entrepreneurs (transitioning from corporate to entrepreneurial role) to actually have a team aligned with them because high amount of risk is involved if you don't have the right team to take you forward towards your vision. Opposites do attract, but similarities bond well in the long run. So let's try and understand what do you need to uncover and find answers to to hire the right person in your team. These tips can be applied to any relationship that you would like to form. It doesn't limit to just professional one but personal too.
1. See for their abilities: Are they capable enough to do the job that you intend to hire them for? At the beginning, everyone performs well. In fact, when you are interviewing, the interviewee will sell you pretty well. So, here you have to use your wisdom, acumen and intuition to uncover the depth of the person. What he/she is sharing? The truth and the untruth; the missing link, the cutting down of the real stories, the portrayal, the projection, their gifts, their shadows, their strengths, their blind-spots.
2. Will they do the job in the long-term? This isn't about blind loyalty but about inner intention/commitment of the person concerned. Many a times people would stick to you just like the parasite. But, what matters is, are they going to do the job in the long run with same passion and dedication which they showed earlier? What's their pattern? It cannot be gauged by just their past records but by understanding their "WHY" for doing the job. Are they doing it for some short-term goal that they have set for themselves or are they doing it for some bigger inner commitment/their bigger WHY? Because once the goal is achieved, there is high probability that they would leave to fulfill their bigger goal.
3. Are their goals aligned with your vision for your Organization? It's an art to allow people to be vulnerable and share their truth with you. When does this happen? Only when you are honest, truthful and vulnerable yourself. When you can create that space for them to open up to you, you will understand what their deepest desires are and what their lofty aspirations are. Once there is a match, you will see alignment of purpose for both.
4. Understanding their basic nature: Everybody has a basic nature. Some are introverts, some extroverts, some are creative, some are silo workers, some love privacy, some love openness, some reserved, some talkative etc. It's important that the job reinforces their basic nature. Or else, things will fall apart. You can't make a Doberman a Labrador! Some basic natures can't be played around with. You nurture their basic nature, they grow, you grow. You tame them, it'll explode at some point.
5. Do they fit well with the team? Team fitment is not just about team-work, team dynamics and the like but about the intrinsic needs that drives the team members. More aligned the intrinsic needs of every team member, higher the team performance. To understand more on this, check the info-graphics below:
Selecting the right team is very important for you to succeed. It saves much of your energy and time. A misfit will rob you off your peace of mind and put you off track. So, be mindful of whom you are hiring. Also, be mindful of your judgments and own limitations while selecting the right team. Judgments and conditioning blocks our ability to think well, decide well and bond well. Sometimes our own blind-spots stand in our way and holds us from making the right decision. Before you hire, be sure of yourself and what you seek. Need help, ask for it. Don't shy away.
Do share your hiring stories with me. What other ways you found effective? What worked well and what didn't? I would be happy to know.
Here's a video where Dan Millman, the author of the best selling novel: Ways of the Peaceful Warrior talks about - What is a Peaceful Warrior? in his own words. www.youtube.com/watch?v=C9Q3lfnUuWo
"A warrior doesn't give up what he loves, he finds the love in what he does." - Dan Millman
A major portion of my life was spent being a victim. Victim of circumstances, my thoughts, my habits, life's challenges, societal norms....the list is endless. I found joy in being a victim because that saved me from doing & acting in the moment but gave me the liberty to play the blame game as long as I wanted to. But, did I gain anything from that?! Well, not really. Today as I march ahead from being a victim, to a fighter to a peaceful warrior, I clearly see that there's much joy in being a peaceful warrior than in being a victim or a fighter. I have a fierce fighter spirit. Like a phoenix I have risen time & again after every failure, after every set-back that life threw at me. But, there was grudge, there was hidden anger for the system, towards people, towards what had happened. I regretted my past, I was worried about the future. But, I never enjoyed the journey, neither was grateful for the journey which is uniquely mine & beautiful. No story is exactly like yours. You are unique, your story is unique. In fact, we all are stories in the making. What do we all strive for ultimately? We all strive to have a peaceful life. But sadly, we spent most of the time being sad, worried, upset, critical, we long, we regret, we don't live in the moment. Peaceful warrior's way of living is the way to living with peaceful heart. A peaceful warrior is someone who has the warrior spirit, are willing to fight, but are also willing to do it with peace & love. There is a sense of balance in doing this.
There are two fundamental approaches to living:
1. Quiet your mind to create empowering beliefs, increase self-esteem to form commitment.
2. Just do it. What will you do now in response to the situation?
And Dan Millman uses the second approach which is just doing it. Peaceful warriors believe in here & now, in the moment. Life comes with ups & downs, tides of changes; we can learn how to sail through it. We can't stop the storm, but learn to sail through it. We can't stop the rain, but learn to dance in it. Yes, finding love in what we do is the peaceful warriors way.
In his book, Dan notes three basic rules of life:
1. Paradox: Life is a mystery. If you try to figure it, you will waste your time.
2. Humour: Keep a sense of humour.
3. Change: Nothing stays the same.
Here are the ways to becoming a peaceful warrior as mentioned in the book by Dan:
1. A warrior acts and only a fool reacts. I learnt this lesson the hard way. I was a fool majority of the time!!! Now I can make fun of this side of me!
2. You are not your thoughts and emotions. They come & go. You are more than that.
3. Be your own voice. Trust your intuition, your heart. No one can understand you better than you. And I am so happy to know this!
4. Be like a kid again.
5. Past is the shadow of the mind. Let go of your limitations.
6. Stop the paralysis analysis game.
7. Don't be afraid to make mistakes.
8. There's a purpose for everything. It's up to us to find it.
9. You are a piece of the entire Universe. This is so empowering!
10. We know nothing at all. Had we known, we would have always lived in the moment & be grateful for what we are, who we are & what we do.
I am a peaceful warrior. My journey from a victim to a fighter to a peaceful warrior is my story that I own & rejoice. I invite you to own your story & live the life of the peaceful warrior at your own right time.
Many a times, we spend our lives operating from the zone of competence or zone of excellence. We never make the cut to our zone of genius, we never cut past the ceiling that holds us from experiencing what we may call bliss internally & in all areas of our lives. We assume that we have reached our zone of genius when we start striving in our zone of excellence. That's our comfort zone. We feel good about ourselves, our work, what we are doing and we are valued for that. But, operating in the zone of genius is altogether a different experience. In that zone, we love what we do and we do because it is gives us deep internal peace and a sense of peace. Energy flows through our being effortlessly. We feel good all the time and this feeling expands to all our being. That is our best state which radiates to all the aspects of our life. In this stage, we use our unique abilities and derive enormous value from what we do and thus have the potential of making more difference than what we do while being in the other zones.
But the big question is, how do we transition to our zone of genius?! And before answering this, we need to first understand, why we don't transition to our zone of genius? Recently, I read a book by Gay Hendricks. There he talks about many things that stand as a barrier to making the move to our next level of excellence i.e. our Zone of Genius. The book had profound impact on me and threw some lights on my upper limit syndrome. Upper limit syndrome is nothing but the limit that we set to ourselves, the point beyond which we feel we cannot grow in life; as if that is the ceiling and we are supposed to be confined to it. However, the fact is, we can break-free from our upper limit problems if we give ourselves the access to understanding what are our behaviours that hold us back from becoming our truest self. As Gay Hendricks says, "Life is fullest when we are most true to ourselves." Just today, I was coaching a transitioning professional, he had reached his glass ceiling and now was wondering what next?! I told him the same thing, to own his story so far, see past the real issue and start embracing the new story by letting the light of awareness shine brightly on his fears, thereby challenging his limiting beliefs about situations, himself, people & life.
The reason why we don't transition to our zone of genius is because we don't pay attention to our behaviours, patterns and thoughts that hold us from going to the next level.Sadly, many a times we don't even realize that a greener pasture awaits us where we can make the best use of our unique ability. Our mind gets fogged, we buy to our old stories, our repeated patterns believing that what got us here would take us afar. One interesting thing that came up for me was that, there's one barrier called the crime of outshining. This is a fear which many gifted individuals have. They fear that if they excel, they would upset people around them and that would take away lot of things from their lives in terms of love, sense of belonging, inclusion etc. Hence, they play low with the belief that if they fly to their zone of genius, they will lose out on the precious relationships & be all alone. Our mind is amazing! It has the capacity to either break us or make us. And then we wonder why we feel unfulfilled! A powerful question to ask yourself is, where is it that we are doing something that makes us feel incomplete and not whole? Now I know what it means to me.
How to transition to your zone of genius?! First and foremost, by making a commitment to living in the zone of genius no matter what. If you choose to enjoy doing what you do, if you choose to let positive energy flow through you, if you choose inner peace over anything else, you have already made your first step towards your zone of genius. The only thing that you need to do now is to sit in deep curiosity and observe where this faith and curiosity takes you to. Undoubtedly, it will land you in your zone of genius where you will enjoy what you do and use your gifts to the fullest.
Leaving you with this anonymous quote: "Blaze a path of your own brilliance."
"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.
"Overcome every limitation and soar as high as you can." This has been my mantra for life. Doesn't matter how old I am or at what stage of my life I am. I love to soar like the eagle & will overcome every limitation that comes my way...
One day after a hectic day at work, I sat down for an honest talk with myself. I asked myself, “What is it that I really wanted to do? Do I want to spend the rest of my life doing what I was doing? Am I really doing justice to the gifts that I possessed? Have I explored my zone of genius? Have I unleashed my truest potential?”. All these questions fogged my mind and I was so confused. A little voice inside me said, “You haven’t explored yet. You are living in your comfort zone. You are living a default life that just happened.” And I just got blank. I was filled with vacuum when I realized the truth. In this humdrum existence, I had long back shunned my power to create, my power to go beyond, lean on the edge & create miracles. “You can live an exponential life, what’s stopping you?!”, screamed my inner self.
I tried to analyse and find answers to all these questions. A part of me always knew what I wanted, but many things held me back. Many a times I externalised the reasons for my current state of affair. Sometimes I blamed myself too. Sometimes fear of the unknown held me back. Sometimes fear of losing out on other aspects haunted me. Other times it was my lack of awareness & inaction which held me back. But, after having an honest scrutiny of myself without camouflaging any aspects, I realised that it was nothing but my lack of real commitment to anything that held me back. And the reason for not being committed fully to anything was because I wasn’t aware what I wanted to really commit to. As I pen down my vulnerable side, let me also confess that at that time, I was seemingly having a decent career as an HR professional, a good family life and overall living a happy normal life like everyone does, in fact to the outer world it was like the greener pasture that they secretly longed for. But, here I am talking about GOING BEYOND; a life of deep self-awareness, infinite possibilities & unraveling of my innate gifts; thereby creating an exponential life for myself & others too.
So, here I was soaking & basking with glory at the same time, with this awareness. Finally I could see the limiting belief that was holding me back. “If I fulfill my deepest desires, secret dreams; I will not have time for my loved ones, for my family & for the people whom I cared.” So, what I did was I compromised on my intrinsic desires thinking that I am doing a great sacrifice. But, alas I wasn’t doing good either to myself or to any roles that I was donning. When I come from a place of scarcity in expression of my own gifts, genius; how can I even function effectively in my other roles?! Unknowingly, I was transferring this limiting belief to my son too. It is rightly said that children don’t do what they are told, but what they feel & see for themselves. I was scared when I realized what role model I was setting for my child.
Two values went hand in hand for me: balance & fulfillment. I was unable to figure out a path that would provide me with both at the same time. Law of attraction says you attract what you think and belief. A shift in mindset enabled things to fall in place. I chose to travel the path of a coach. I still remember my introductory lines while in the coaching program: “I want to first experience deep transformative coaching myself. Thereafter, I will give this gift back to my clients & serve them powerfully.” The journey to transformation was a different experience altogether. Every little step that I took led me closure to my exploration & self-growth. It opened the gates to immense possibilities, abundance & miracles. And today, here I am amidst you all as a coach supporting people to align with their unexplored gifts, transform into their real being & live a life not of compromise but inspiration & fulfillment.
PS. This is about my own transition from an HR professional to a professional full-time Coach. This article of mine got published in Going Beyond ICW 2018, a newsletter published by ICF (International Coach Federation), Delhi NCR chapter.
"What next? I have reached the peak of my career and I don't see any further growth? I have been handling this profile for many years and I don't find the excitement in me to do the same repetitive work? At this level, I can't change jobs quickly. What do I do? I have huge debts to pay? My health doesn't permit me to travel a lot and this is taking a toll on me. I am stressed and don't see a way forward." Does this or even some parts sound familiar? I know that a specific segment of professionals who have reached a certain stage in their career will be able to relate to what I am saying. Leaving you to reflect upon this inquiry to yourself: What did you create inside & outside of you that you are feeling this way?
Many a times, we start our career with a particular intent. Achieving what we set out for propels us to achieve more of it. We keep running, till we reach this stage of realization & awareness. We never stopped at the pit stop to recharge ourselves or reflect if the direction we are heading to is the right one or something that we really want to walk the rest of our lives. Years later we figure out that we are doing something that we never thought of. How did the twist and turn happen? How things changed and became routine, remains a mystery! Finally you reach a stage where you are shrouded by fear, helplessness, uncertainty and hopelessness. That's when you stand at the cross road of your life to chose what you want to do about this situation. This is the stage when you need to get lost to find yourself yet again. Welcome to the Stagnation Blues!
This is a premium club for all the high-achievers who flew their way through many things in life and finally landed here. These are the times when you tend to forget everything. You forget your strengths, you also forget that this is a cycle that you must face, be prepared & deal with so that you come out not only successful, but attain exponential success beyond this point.
First & foremost, acknowledge yourself for the journey that you have traveled to reach this far. What an incredible bundle of experience resides inside you! While you were busy in your craft mastery, leading others, making ends meet, supporting the needs of the professional as well as the personal world, you lost yourself. Now is the time to remind yourself of that person who was in you, when you first embarked on this journey. Then reflect on this quote by Marshall Goldsmith,"What got you here won't get you there."
After the acknowledgement, now it is time for gratitude for self & every experience that you were a part of in your life. The big question to your apparent challenge: What do you do to enable yourself to have an exponential growth beyond this stagnation? How do you progress in your career? How do you smoothly transition into something that you have been longing for but many things were getting on your way?
Here are some useful tips for you to reflect, journal & accordingly take actions :
1. Find your Ikigai. It is a Japanese tool that will help you figure out that compass/center which includes answers to questions like: what do you love? What you are good at? What you can be paid for? What the world needs? This exercise will enable you to see through what brings meaning to your career & life.
2. Do a SWOT analysis. Then write down an action step for each.
3. Look for external support to help you see your blind spots, help you leverage your strengths and lead you to exponential growth.
4. Don't let fear crumble you. Take actions despite of fear.
5. Believe in your professional strengths and upscale it if needed.
6. Ask yourselves powerful questions and set on a mission to uncover the answers.
It's time that you stop in the pit stop and take an overall look at your being to make a fresh start towards your destination. The more you put the fears under the carpet, the more you run away from acknowledging this phase; the more you will find it hard to overcome. Take your stagnating career to an exponential growth & progression before it takes its toll on you. Let yourself bloom fully. See past the shadow.
Life & Leadership Coach