Whom to listen and follow – your heart or head?

Follow head or heart? Source: http://www.flickr.com/

Your spontaneous response probably would be – I should follow my heart! This is what you have heard, read or been told time and again by your role models, mentors, teachers or gurus, well known authors or leaders!! But, can you exactly pin point – this is the voice or thought from my heart and that one is from my head? Everyone agrees that head speaks to you all the time; but does heart also do so or it speaks selectively?

Let us take examples of goons, gurus and gods. Do goons have heart as well as head? Off course they do! If you read real stories of goons or gangsters, they do have compassion, albeit for certain class of people – their dear ones or those for whose cause they have become trouble makers or cruel. So, when they show compassion, our conventional wisdom would say they are driven by their heart. But, what happens when they demonstrate cruelty or terror? It may be convenient for most of us to think that it’s because of their head! What happens to their heart at that time? Does it go sleeping; it does not prevent them to perpetrate pains to others? There seems to be a contradiction! Can heart or head switch off and on, depending upon one’s comfort or convenience?

Now, take example of gurus or even successful corporate leaders. A good guru or leader is supposed to be highly balanced and treat all of his followers or fellows on equal footing. He or she would reject any advance by his/her follower/s to come closer; otherwise, he/she runs the risk of falling from grace like it happened with Bill Clinton former US President, Tiger Woods famous golfer or David Petraeus former CIA Director in US. So, a successful guru or leader would never be drawn into emotions! Does that mean gurus or leaders don’t have heart? If no, then from where come their kind and congenial behavior? Yet; most believe that gurus and leaders work through only their heads; that is why they are dispassionate and even desert their comforts and families for their pursuits.

Now for god; in all religions, Gods have been projected to operate through their meta-physical powers or enlightened mind like Buddha. There is nothing like separate voices of their heads or hearts!

How do we differentiate what comes from heart and one from head?

What we tend to relate to heart!

Most consider following feelings and functions belong only to heart:

  1. Love
    We connect every form of love to our heart; but not respect!
  2. Kindness and compassion
    We believe an act of kindness can only come from heart. Only heart is capable of being compassionate; but being considerate, inconsiderate or impersonate is handiwork of our head.
  3. Empathy and sympathy
    Same as in point 2 above; supposed to ooze out of our heart!
  4. Passion and devotion
    We don’t believe that passion for a person or profession, devotion for god, nature, nation or duties can come from head; it is heart!
  5. Positive emotions
    All positive emotions as above and others like happiness, fun, fervor or excitement have been perceived by us as regime of heart!

So, coming from heart, everything is considered right! Heart can’t commit any crime or mistake!!

The rest goes to head!

That seems to be a blatant truth!!

  1. Rationale and reasoning
    Only our head has competence to rationalize and understand the realities – this is what all believe!
  2. Judgement and justice
    That is the job reserved for our head.
  3. Anticipation and analysis
    We believe these functions exclusively belong to our head!
  4. Knowledge and niches
    Our head or brain is the repository of our knowledge, specialties, talents, traits, information, intelligence and habits!
  5. Duties and discipline
    All ideas about our duties and discipline are comprehended by our head.
  6. Convictions
    All of our beliefs, faith and principles get developed and executed by our head.
  7. Negative emotions
    Our brain (head) also takes the brunt of every negative feelings and/or actions – reactions, obsession, anger, anxiety, greed, gaffe and more!

Does our heart function independent of our head?
Remember that we are not talking of our biological heart here! So, what do we mean when we say our heart talking and we listening? 

Factually speaking, we experience the functions of head and heart only through our mind. Then, how a line gets drawn between voices of heart and head?

If you carefully look at above points, you would soon discover that:

  • We relate all of our positive emotions to heart; but negative emotions to head!
  • We perceive that all “spontaneous but right” thoughts emanate from heart; however, “systematic but right” thoughts and “spontaneous or systematic but wrong” thoughts come from head! 
  • Our heart has only virtues; but head can have both virtues and vices!
  • Our heart operates randomly; but head works on rationale, reasoning or realities!
  • Our heart receives only compliments and credits; but head receives both credit and discredit!

Secret of how heart differs from head!

Whatever you want to call it – scientific, material or spiritual fact is both heart (emotional not biological) and head resides in one and same mind!

There is only one and singular situation, when your thoughts are very appealing to you; those are positive and right and that situation comes “When you are thinking purely in present time forgetting the past”. 

When you think in present but keeping reference to past memory however old or fresh (like a second before), then you can go either right or wrong! This is what all of us do all the time and that is actually our head speaking. But thinking is just present, when our mind merge with current moment, is what we have accidentally come to understand – “That’s my heart speaking”! 

So, it is correct to follow your heart. But, you now have a new perspective – what exactly it means when your heart speaks. It can speak as often as you try! Remember, it is very subtle but gives you superlative power for correct decision making and revolutionizing your life/career!

 

Nature demands balancing; else we end up paying through our nose!

Would you ever like to mess up with Mother Nature? Source: http://www.flickr.com/

US was recently hit by one of the severest snow storms, affecting 80 Million people across 20 states and causing serious disruptions and damages. On 26-December- 2004, world was shaken by great Indian Ocean tsunami, which had released energy equivalent of 23,000 Hiroshima type atomic bombs, as per U.S. geological Survey and killing more than 150,000 people! Giant forces, which had been building up deep in the earth apparently for years suddenly got busted on that day, unleashing killer water waves in Indian Ocean at the speed of a jet airliner!!

Are such catastrophes actually retaliations by nature against excessive tempering by man?

Nature has gifted enormous energy reservoirs of oil and gas in extreme terrains and environments in Middle East, Russia and elsewhere, as if hardships are being rewarded with high returns. It seems often common that right things are found at the wrong places and wrong things are found at the right places. Boom in oil and gas production led to unprecedented economic and industrial growth in last 2 decades and its price peaked at US $ 145 per barrel in July, 2008. On one hand, it led to lot of innovations in explorations and extractions like oil/gas from sea using floating platforms, sand containing bitumen and shale gas and stimulated huge investments to build additional production capacities. On other hand, easy money generated by oil and gas business found its conduit to political rivalries, unrests, wars and terror, which has slowly sucked world economies into turmoil and tumbled oil prices to around US $ 30, as of now. No one knows how much of ecological and geological imbalances that we are witnessing are on account of extraction of this commodity in huge quantity from underground and sea!

Look at countries or regions, which have population in excess of available resources. When we look at their history of calamities, it seems to support economic ideas advanced by noted Thomas Robert Malthus in 1798 that unchecked population growth would be countered and compensated by deaths, diseases, wars etc.

Is it that nature refuses to entertain the extremes for too long and endeavors to balance?

Answer is yes; it appears not only true at global or macro level but also at personal or micro level! Look at following examples:

  1. If we hold any item in excess, we tend to consume more and also waste more.
  2. When quantity of anything goes up, quality comes down and invariably, there are more rejections.
  3. When you have wealth in excess of what you can manage, you are more likely to deploy it for wrong or loss making use or it would lie dormant, losing its value significantly over time.
  4. If you have too much knowledge, you develop lot of differences with others, make bad experiences and eventually, it becomes your liability.
  5. If you are too beautiful, you would get too exposed; get into wrong acts only to make beauty your bane.

Nature seems to be overly against overindulgence of any kind!

Excess of anything is bad; but excess of no-thing is also bad!

We all know that anything in excess is bad; but what is very interesting is to know that excess of not doing anything is worse.

If you communicate with people too less, you would be isolated; deprived of opportunities; get in depression inviting clinical advice to mix with people.

If you spend too sedentary a life, you would be sucked into health issues forcing you to change your life style.

So, message of nature is – do little (moderate) of everything that it has provided to you or else face its fury!

Why nature brings down “excess” to “enough”!

There are 2 main reasons –

  1. Nature excels and allow you to excel under state of equilibrium.
    Whenever nature’s equilibrium is disturbed, it would react to restore it. Depending upon type and extent of such disturbance in short or long term, nature’s corrective action can be mild or massive.
    Corporate gurus go gaga over disruptive technologies; but they seem to fall short on their vision of nature’s balancing act!
  2. Law of least chaos demands that each object or area be charge neutral.
    Whether we take atom or universe, it is charge neutral and that is what gives it stability. If any object or part/whole area becomes polarized – positive or negative, it would become chaotic until it gets neutralized again.
    Anger or anxiety, ferocity or fundamentalism of an individual comes, when he becomes net negative; likewise, ecstasy comes when one is highly positive. What is war on terror? It is a struggle between highly negative and positive minds or people! It is not divine driven!!
    Eventually, everyone has to come to normal (neutralized) state, if he/she has to survive!

Drawing a line between what is excess and what is enough!

Common perception is that it is difficult! Difficulty is really with our unwillingness to draw the line itself! Most people like to keep it vague; not realizing that brings serious problems. Then, they derive consolation by blaming their fate or consider it fait-accompli!

“Enough” is always efficient; but “Excess” is invariably extraneous and waste of energy and money!
World leaders and thinkers have so far failed to define importance of such distinction – excess vs enough – and create correct understanding of nature’s demand for balancing or moderation. They are clueless on how crises and conflicts develop, when no thoughts are given to balancing population vs resources, technological advancements vs moral advancements, industrial development vs nature’s development, quantity vs quality.

It is a very simple mantra: 

Line between enough and excess is best drawn, when you differentiate your needs from wants or desires; distinguish your goals from your greed! 

So, for all levels – individual to international – message of Mother Nature is clear – moderation; balancing; stay in center; don’t lean on left or right. You would then surely secure your future and that of future generations!

Simple but unique n universal rules no one can escape or evade!

When you don't resist the rules! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

Our day to day life is governed by very simple but strong rules, which apply to the most powerful – US President – to the poorest person on this planet! Very few have noticed these rules. These are as if framed by the creator of universe; but one thing is certain – these rules are apparently iron cut and do not alter a bit in any situation! If you ever conclude it otherwise, it is nothing but your illusion!!

Often you observe that despite your smart and sincere efforts, you don’t get desired results; you struggle to get peace of mind despite sustained prayers; you are doing what others have done – they got it but not you! What is behind these? The reason for more than 90% of time is that you are violating these rules, while still expecting that things would work out for you.

There seems to be no document, where such rules have been documented for benefit of all. Here below are top ten rules:

  1. You get what you give
    It is all pervading rule! You give respect, you would get respect; you hurt someone verbally or physically, you would be hurt. You give smile to someone, she/he would smile back. Someone is always smiling and hence you may wonder this rule does not work; no, it does! Your smile is bound to bring corresponding incremental smile on that smiling face; that incremental is what matters and is real!
  2. You become what you believe
    You can’t be other than what you choose to be! If you believe in dynamism, you would become a dynamic person; but if you don’t believe that you can be dynamic, you would then be docile. Note the key point – by not choosing one attribute, you automatically opt for its opposite or you can also choose the opposite consciously e.g. you want to be docile and you would then be so!
  3. What you share swells
    If you share love, it would soar; if you share grief, it would spread! Likewise, if your share wealth, it would multiply; if you share wisdom, you would master more!!
  4. Bad karmas can’t be offset by good karmas and vice versa
    We often think that having done something good, we can go easy and do what is not good. But we can’t escape paying a price. Good and bad karmas are like 2 separate accounts – there is no cross debit or credit – you get prize or penalty for each account respectively. 
  5. Very thought that you have reached a climax is onset of your climb down
    This is true from bed room to board room or community to country!
    Corollary of this rule is what we often say what goes up has to come down. Being up and down have relative positions; crucial is the thought where am I. Once you become conscious of your high position, you lose your hold on same. Try not to think sincerely how high you have reached, then height would never matter for you and you can keep going higher! 
  6. You are always be bitten and beaten by your own biases
    You develop your biases for a person to beat him/her through your dislike/s; but the fact is those biases would not bite him/her but you!
    You have no clue how much energy and time you lose courtesy your biases!!
  7. Sanctity of an act starts to fracture, when masses start following it
    We always feel comfortable being in a crowd and blindly put our belief in what masses do, forgetting that masses mostly make mistakes.
    Just take one burning example – mass hysteria worldwide against terror; can it be tackled like that? Instead, it has only helped it to mushroom!
  8. Regardless of how well you organize, things would go out of order
    This does not mean you should not organize yourself or your things. It means get your expectations right and take corrective measures in time!
    Nature does not allow sustained state of equilibrium. This is consistent with famous 2nd law of thermodynamics and hence also scientific.
  9. Cluttered space or schedule clutters your mind
    This is a key to your efficiency and elegance!
    Cluttered work place, home or your routine is what gives birth to lot of banes. You lose clarity and hence confidence.
  10. Realities are meant to be accepted, else you get rejected and dejected
    We expend too much of extraneous efforts in resisting or contesting the realities. Eventually, everyone comes to term; but lost time and opportunities don’t return!

So, how about flowing with above rules to make your life and career ever flourishing and frolic?

Wish to make 2016 awe-inspiring? Make reverse resolutions!

Momentous moments to usher in a new era! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

When “what we are going through” approaches the end, we feel relieved and look forward to the turning point! Suddenly, we feel nostalgic, euphoric with burning desires and renewed hopes!! We like to bundle up the past and begin a new journey in the New Year. Casually or seriously, we resolve to do something that we could not do earlier.

It has become a ritual to make new or renewed resolution/s on New Year. With that comes a challenge – what we are able or like to do, we would have started doing it earlier; hence, our resolution/s invariably come for what we were unable to do, hoping that we would be able to do it this time, even though we don’t bring any change to make it happen!

Therefore, history repeats – we fail to make our resolutions real again, since nothing usually changes except for our excitement over digits of year increasing by 1! 

So, why not look at 2016 through a different lens?

What you have not been able to do in past, you would not be able to do it in present, unless you change your approach and increase will-power. But then, it is not easy for everyone. However, what you have been doing, it is conceivable that you can resolve not to do it! This is what I call “Reverse resolution/s”.

Think over – can you move forward, unless you control or crush what takes you backward? Can you hope to become dynamic, without dropping what makes you dull or docile? So, secret of life is in scrapping the showstoppers for show to start and succeed!

How about considering reverse resolution/s for one or more of the following:

  1. I shall not live in the past!
    This resolution can be the most significant and rewarding.
    Our past comprises of knowledge and emotions. When we say living in the past, it essentially means living by past emotions, which is a single source of all of our banes, limitations or weaknesses! Contrary to popular beliefs, past emotions always bring pains, although we perceive these give pleasure!
    Get rid of your past emotions; it would rekindle and revolutionize your life!
  2. I shall not give up what I choose to do!
    Choose consciously what you want to do; but once you decide, giving up is a worst idea, unless it turns out to be a wrong choice. Your determination to not to give up opens numerous doors of new opportunities.
  3. I shall not expect others to be what I can’t be!
    When above is not done, conflict unleashes for supervisors and subordinates, politicians and public, friends in relationship or spouses in marriage!!
  4. I shall not live in doubts!
    Living in doubts is like living in dark cell; leading a double standard life!! When you entertain doubts, you can never be genuine and truthful. You can never qualify to be a leader!
  5. I shall never neglect my health and happiness!
    Maintaining good health and happiness is primary duty of all; but most consider it secondary, which is a shame!!
  6. I shall not live in my comfort zones!
    Humans have natural tendency to build and live in comfort zones, which actually make them laggards and impede progress.
  7. I shall not move with crowd!
    If you want to make a difference and come in lime light, you must do things differently than what the crowd does.
  8. I shall not put down anyone nor please everyone!
    We have strange liking for 2 extremes e.g. either we want to put down or please others! We can create a much better work place or a world to live, if we give space and respect to everyone. None other than we are the chief beneficiary from same!!
  9. I shall not allow my ego and biases to overwhelm me!
    Most people feel high on their ego and biases; whereas these actually create lows for their character and charisma!!
  10. I shall not pass on the buck for my troubles to others but own up!
    If you take responsibility for what you are and what you face, you would become supremely confident and courageous to attain new heights!

So, how about adopting some of above to make 2016 a game changer for you?

9 unique but simple steps to build/boost your confidence!

Confidence and charisma go hand in hand! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

Confidence is one quality, which you need universally at all times and spaces. You need it in board room or bed room; whether you are an interviewer or being interviewed; you are addressing an audience or asking a question; whether you are a supervisor or subordinate; you want to build a relationship or break it; whether you are joking or juggling around!

Confidence brings you dynamism as well as optimism. It improves your body language, as also spoken language!

What exactly is confidence!

Surf the internet and you would find host of articles/information on what is confidence; but it does not hit the right chord and leaves you confused.

Correct definition of confidence is “Alignment of mind and body, with no thoughts that drag you in the past”!

So, when you feel confident, you would observe that your mind and body work in full synchronism. You feel good, when you are confident. Therefore, your body releases happy hormones – endorphins, dopamine and serotonin.

9 steps to secure and soar up your confidence

There are lot of material and advisories available on subject; none other than following steps can drive you towards the very definition of confidence:

  1. Do only what you believe
    Do not venture into any talk or task for which you don’t have conviction. You would always be better off by not doing anything when you lack belief.
  2. Believe in self
    If you can feel your thoughts and breaths, it proves that you have all powers as anyone else on this planet. Rope this in your mind as your top belief!
  3. Listen and learn
    Talking is least important but listening cum learning is most. Read and learn the subject, you want to deal keeping no pressure on mind.
  4. Make and take notes
    Very important is to write down key points when you listen, read or mull. Supplement those by your own explanations.
  5. Be optimistic
    What has to go wrong would go wrong; but what has to go right would also go right! So, shade away your anxieties, fear and pessimism.
  6. Be enthusiastic
    Whatever you do, do it by your heart; love it; take pride in it whether big or small. That makes your mind positive!
  7. Keep it simple and straight
    Surprised that simplicity brings confidence? It certainly does!
    When you keep it simple, your mind will not get cluttered with too many thoughts. It would keep only relevant thoughts and that it key to bring clarity and confidence in you.
    If simplicity is gold; keeping it straight adds to its glitter. You would hit the point directly and avoid getting digressed.
  8. Be respectful
    You can be truly respectful only when you raise your self-esteem and reduce your ego. When you give respect – be it your boss, customer or audience – you get it back and that is a sure shot to swell your confidence.
  9. Keep fit
    Staying fit is one of our top duties. Put your faith in balanced diet and exercises. Yoga and focusing on your breathing with eyes closed (extremely simple and effective form of meditation) help you to align your body and mind.

So, how about taking above steps forward to bring/boost confidence? Return gift that you would get is charisma!