Tag Archives: Inertia

Change under crisis or constraint is compelling; but it is costly n chaotic!

abc“Change” is the most celebrated term in corporate life, leadership circles, professional and personal lives and even in country governance across the globe. Most people take pride in speaking for change, but fall short is imbibing and implementing it. Many talk about it but don’t know what to do with it.

An aspirant gets a new job of his choice and hence he loves it and puts in hard work. Years pass by and his conviction gets consolidated that he would never like to leave such a job. His management starts to perceive him as a liability; but he believes in his loyalty and one fateful day, he faces termination.

You develop a taste for sugar coated donuts and get hooked to eating couple of them every morning. You believe you are young with no family history of blood sugar problem; so, why not enjoy it. In time to come, you discover alarmingly high level of blood sugar and then you start spending time and money on medical experts and medicines; at the same time, you find it painful to miss taste of donuts.

Look at the iconic companies like General Motors, Ford, Siemens, BlackBerry and many more. These organizations did not change in or with time and hence faced blow to their businesses or serious crisis, resulting into painful restructuring, sell offs or even closure of several of their units.

Rise of right wing voices or parties in USA, Europe and Brexit are clear indications of ruling parties giving a cold shoulder to changing their policies in time and now their people are forcing them to change albeit in wrong direction.

Is it not a clear indication that waiting for crisis to come and then change is very costly and complex? Very often, changing under constraints may not be a blessing but a bane.

Why “Change” receives more of lip service than living examples

It has become a fashion to talk about change; but hardly anyone is willing to walk for a change. Celebrities proudly pronounce “Change is the only constant in Universe”, not knowing what exactly it means. Change is a continuum; not a constant. Universe actually has no constant.

Then, we are ever ready to pass our sermons how and why others should change, forgetting that if we want to change others, that change has to first originate from us. A step ahead, people talk about grand changes in systems at company, community or country level; but most prefer to be spectators and fight shy of becoming part of system. Unless you become part of change, bringing change is only a pipe dream.

In more than 90% of cases, it is a decorative word in speeches and essays, until crisis descends.

Biggest confusion is “Why and what change”

Homilies aside, herds hardly understand correct definition of change!

Nothing is static around us. We and our environments are continuously changing. So, change is nothing but adjusting to changes happening internally and externally to us with time, so that we can accomplish our short and long term goals in least time and resistance.

So first of all, to talk of change without your goals in mind is foolhardy. Then comes, identifying what incremental changes have happened in and around you, followed by planned steps to effect the change.

Crisis comes out, when accumulated changes crash the system

By and large, people like to be inert to changes, because of inertia that they develop from their comfort zones.

Changes not made but accumulated over time burst out in form of crisis or even conflicts. You or people at large than have no choice or time but brace or face changes thrust upon you. You like it or not, such forced changes are bound to be painful; some of these may be right but a lot would not be. You would react against such forced changes; but would have no recourse left and hence, these become chaotic.

Changing by choice is indeed chaste

Very fact that change is continuum tells us that we must live side by side of changes that are arising and align with them in time. This alone can make us very efficient, ebullient and agile.

Changing by choice makes the Change a pleasure and not pain; it can be a nice asset but never liability.

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Baggage that you carry at the back of your mind is your biggest bottleneck!

Baggage at back of mind! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

One fine morning you get up with bad feelings and start to wonder what has happened to you today! You feel tired or lazy; things look hopeless and you witness lot of things going wrong. You are unable to figure out what has really gone wrong. Your health, blood pressure and everything around you are otherwise as good as previous days.

Some leaders are great communicators. However, you would notice that on some occasions, they are extra-ordinarily effective and inspiring; but there are instances when they do a lousy job. Why? Females are known to have mood swings. Medical sciences surmise that it is because of hormonal changes. Do the swings of what is at the back of their mind swing their hormone levels or hormones swing what is going on in their mind is really not known to science.

There are several star sportsmen like Roger Federer in tennis, Lionel Messi in soccer etc. Sometimes, they are in the best form and other times, they can’t keep with their track records. Why?

The reason behind each of above examples is “What is at the back of his/her mind”, which holds concerned person back; impairs his/her performance; does not allow to do what one attempts to do!

What we mean by “What is at the back of mind”

Though it is a very common term, people seldom know its complete meaning and colossal effect.

Thoughts, information and/or images from your past memory, which are passively present in your mind constitute what is at the back of your mind. Your mind might be actively witnessing an action or making you to perform an action; but these Thoughts, Information and/or Images (TII) constantly influence or rather get mixed up with what you are actively engage with – thoughts or tasks. Sometimes you are aware about it and sometimes you don’t even realize this!

Your beliefs, faith, habits, biases, ego, obsession, fear, anger, anxiety liking or disliking are always part of TII!

Now is the key information hitherto little known – what is at the back of our mind (passively present) has been termed for centuries as “Subconscious mind”! On other hand, what is being witnessed now (actively present) is our “Conscious mind”!!

“What is at the back of mind” is more a bane than blessing!

If you believe that having things at the back of your mind i.e. in subconscious mind do good to you, then start to rethink.

Things that can reside at the back of your mind are countless. Some of the significant ones are:

  1. Love or respect for someone
    If it is balanced, it is bound show up for a right reason and at a right time. Then, it works well. But if you are overwhelmed, then it resides at the back of your mind. You would tend to overdo and in that process, mess it up.
  2. Past performance or incidences
    When you are able to pull from your memory only lessons learnt, it would help. Instead, if you keep images of past incidences at the back of your mind, it would lead to over or under confidence and that would impair your performance, rather than improving it!
  3. Anger, anxiety, fear or stress
    These rampantly reside at the back of mind of everyone, cause most issues and mood swings. These lead to pessimism and hopelessness.
  4. Attention deficit and absent mindedness
    These are the prime causes of mistakes and mishaps.
  5. Prejudices and ego
    These are foundation stones for arrogance, split personality, irritation and tendency to blame or pass on buck to others!
  6. Multitasking
    Only when you keep several tasks or items at the back of your mind that you would multitask. Although most people defend merits of multitasking, it actually messes up their efficiency.
  7. Feeling pain in the body
    When feeling of body pain remains at back of your mind, it is frustrating and nagging. If you divert your mind i.e. take it away from back of your mind, then pain decreases or disappears. 
  8. Feeling lethargic or inertia
    There are days, when you feel withdrawn or lackluster; enthusiasm in you is missing and initiative lacking. You are at loss to understand, what has happened to you. These symptoms are because you are passively struggling with your thoughts at the back of your mind, leading to confusion and reaction and that alters levels of mainly 3 hormones in your body – Adrenaline, Cortisol and Norepinephrine.

What is at the back of mind is a burden, you must get rid of!

Right from childhood, mind gets so used to keeping thoughts, images and information (TII) at the back of mind that we start to believe that it is a necessity and we can’t live without same. This belief has been further reinforced by innumerable books and articles on importance of subconscious mind, which as a matter of fact promotes keeping things at the back of mind, albeit only positive ones. What one forgets – if you keep positive things at the back of mind, it is impossible to prevent negative things to also creep in! 

My research for years has revealed that whatever is at the back of your mind – good or bad – it does not do anything good to you! It is a burden worth dumping it away!! Some of you may then start to wonder what would happen to your knowledge, notions, traits or beliefs. 

It is too simple to believe what can work wonders:

  • Practice to keep knowledge/information, ideas and images in your memory but not at the back of your mind.
    Let it not be passively present in your mind; allow it to sleep in your memory. 
  • Do your things unmindful of your past; don’t prejudge or predefine; just witness whatever is happening.
  • Allow your conscious mind to take control and respond to what you witness.
    You would be amazed to see how your mind would automatically fetch knowledge or information from your memory right at nick of time or as needed.
    Most innovations, creativity, breakthroughs and successes have come to people, when their mind was functioning like this!!!

So, a mind without any baggage at its back is amazingly powerful, peaceful and progressive! Any elaboration further would only belittle its phenomenal effects; you need to experience it by doing it!!

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Why history repeats by itself at professional and personal levels!

Reminiscent of history! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

A survey shows that about two third people around the world believe that history always repeats by itself; but one third not!

Fact is history does repeat time and again at micro and macro levels, albeit it does not replicate exactly. Its tendencies and trends, types and turn of events are similar in nature.

Famous US President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in a theater by a man, who fled to a warehouse. Another well-known US President John F. Kennedy was assassinated by a man from a warehouse, who then fled to a theater! Turn the pages of history of several battles fought; it repeatedly shows that one side in the battles was generally outmanned and outgunned, but it always managed to win the battle because it had better leadership! Every era of peace and prosperity has been followed by era of turmoil and troubles and vice versa. Countries, companies and individuals – leaders or preachers alike look invincible during their hay days; but become vulnerable and gullible soon thereafter. Inflation is followed by deflation in country economics and then inflation raises its head again. Cycles of historical highs and lows keep repeating unabated!

You feel hungry at 5 p.m. and treat yourself with junky food. Next morning, you read in newspaper how junk food junks your health and you decide not to eat it again. But again that afternoon, at 5 p.m., you end up eating junk food.

As per famous American author Mark Twain, no occurrence is sole and solitary, but a mere repetition of a thing which has happened before and perhaps more often!

Negative historical events seem to repeat more frequently than positive ones!

Have you notices that? Historical records point to same – wars, accidents, natural calamities, rebellions, deaths, setbacks and sicknesses!

My great grandfather died before my great grandmother. Someone had told my grandfather that history would repeat with him. It got stuck in his mind as worry for remainder of his life and he did die before my grandmother!

If a father became bankrupt in his business, one of his children in business would also become bankrupt in future!!

Reasons why history repeats!

Where do events, which occur, get stored? Are heavenly hands responsible to recall history? Astrology would dispose it is repeat positioning of planets that makes a given event to repeat!

Don’t be surprised to know – every day you repeat more than 90% of things that you did yesterday like getting up in the morning around the same time, brushing teeth and having breakfast in hurry, driving on the road with similar frame of mind – agitated or assuaged to your behavior at work. If this is the case, nearly 90% of things that happen to you would be a repeat of past.

Now, when large number of people do the similar things as above, then lot of events that are likely to happen at larger levels would also be same – simplest examples are cleanliness, traffic congestion, temperament or culture of public etc.!

Logically, repetition of history is not metaphysical or mysterious phenomena. History or past is not stored anywhere in nature or universe but in your own mind. It repeats, simply because consciously or unconsciously you repeat your thoughts and actions, regardless these are positive, negative or neutral, to the extent of 90%!

When you repeatedly think same, you are bound to attract similar events or environments that you have witnessed in past. Conversely, similar events would revive your memory or thoughts. That is why some scenes always tend to instill fear or some faces or faiths invoke prejudices in you!

Why we tend to repeat, more so what is negative or wrong!

  1. Inertia
    Like gravitational force, inertia is prevalent in every object, leave alone humans. So what we start, we tend to continue, unless we decidedly act against it.
  2. Comfort zones
    We have strong tendency to develop our comfort zones and then, feel cozy in same, since we start to like those and feel secured.
  3. Habits, traits and beliefs
    Above 2 points give birth to our habits, traits and beliefs. These 3 attributes have great influence on our repeat thinking and behavior.
  4. Falling prey to negatives
    We are more emotional than rational. Therefore, we are vulnerable to negativity and that makes us very conscious of same. Negativity at individual or mass level is the precise reason, why negative historical events occur more than positive ones, as mentioned above!
  5. Ego and biases
    All of above points promote ego and biases in us, which in turn prompt contradictions and conflicts.
  6. Ideas and images at the back of our mind
    This is a major revelation – you can’t estimate enormity of things at back of your mind! Call it back of your mind, memory storage or subconscious mind; what reside there regulate your moves. You decide to keep only positive memories and discard the rest; but you would realize soon that negative memories still reside and those become active, when you see anything negative. Your drive against what you don’t like keeps same very thing live and lingering.
    Mind knows only to store or ignore; would not differentiate good or bad, positive or negative, when it comes to storing! So, decision to keep only right things does not help; only ignoring does!! Is not amazing?
    What resides at back of your mind is single biggest factor behind your repeat behavior and stimulates history to repeat. 

This brings us to very striking conclusion – what you repeat is not a Change and hence Change is only one that can repel events, you don’t relish! And if you want to reverse the history, work on above 6 points relentlessly!!

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Why terrific thoughts and quotes go for a toss in implementation!

Absence of execution means presence of illusion! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

All of us know what is good or great for us; but when it comes to doing it, we lose grip on same! We love motivational thoughts, positive thinking and inspirational quotes; but when it comes to implementation, these seem to lose impact and we hardly practice the same seriously!!

Many times, some of our own thoughts are so overwhelming, powerful and life changing; but we fail to bring any change. Often the fact is that we might have even determined that this is how we want to be; but our deeds are hardly matching to our own decision and determination.

Look at this – “Life is about making an impact, not making an income – by Kevin Kruse”! Don’t you love this quote? Perhaps you do, since this is one of the most popular quotes! If you love this, are you working incessantly to make an impact? No, you don’t; you do the opposite – being busy in making income. You put those making millions of dollars on high pedestal and make them your role models! Many of us believe that we make impact by selling or buying followers or friends in XX dollars on social media!! We crave for the quote; but wrongly comprehend its very essence.

See another one – “Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve – by Napoleon Hill”. Nobody would disagree with power of mind. But, then how many of us realize the enormous energy that resides in us? Should it not make each one of us supremely confident and courageous? On an average, we only make less than 7% productive use of our mind!

All of us want to be successful and are perhaps aware that “If you are focused, you can’t fail!” Only thing that stands between success and setback is focus. We would spend lot of time and energy in attending learning programs, leadership courses and undergo mentorship; but the success is seldom in sight for many. Reason – most don’t seriously put their sight on “Focus”!

It is incredibly ironical that we are so near to our own thinking, which is terrific; but we throw or tow ourselves away from practicing it! What bugs us?

Why we love terrific thoughts and quotes!

Various people do it for a variety of reasons:

  1. These have become a fancy and fashion for all, especially elite and celebrities!
  2. Most take pride in citing good quotes in their conversation or communication.
    These no doubt make content of your communication rich!
  3. People like to be known in public that they side with positives and not negatives.
    Reality may be often reverse!
  4. Quotes are usually phonetically very appealing and concise. These have subtle humor or rhetoric. Therefore, a good quote can be very catchy.
  5. These invariably relate to real life examples and have profound meaning.
    Therefore, these are striking to us.
  6. Good thoughts and quotes evoke emotions and euphoria! These release Endorphins in our body, which is a “feel good” hormone!!

Why we lag in executing our lucid thoughts and quotes!
If 10% of population would have believed in employing their positive thoughts and quotes, our planet would have been dramatically different! Is not is amusing that things, which are mind boggling, becomes meaningless to us when it comes to imbibing or implementing! The most probable reasons are:

  1. Our inertia
    Many of us believe that we are dynamic and dashing; but reality often is we are docile to change! We are perennially infested by our inertia.
  2. Fractured conviction
    You believe that you have conviction in a good idea or great quote; but you are actually in “Yes & No” state!
    In absence of firm convictions, your terrific thoughts go for a toss:
    – When you face crisis or criticism
    – When your role model/s, nears and dears carry different ideas than you
    – When your friends mock at you
  3. Fragile patience
    To pursue anything positive, patience is a must. Everything that is right or good has a systematic and structured method to evolve. One cannot bypass this.
    Most of us are impatient; like quick results and when that does not happen, we give up. We go on the wrong side, which would show quick result albeit wrong one.
  4. Tendency to follow masses
    Even though masses mostly commit mistakes, we feel out of place if we don’t follow them. We are shy of standing out of and away from crowd.
  5. Confusing emotions as inspiration
    You normally comprehend a thought or quote on its surface; look at its face value. This evokes your emotions and you confuse same as your inspiration. It is for this reason that you experience a short kick of excitement.
    You need to go deeper and focus on its larger implications. This is when emotions give way to your inspiration. If you are inspired, you feel compelled to implement! 
  6. Lot of reactions but little of actions
    Out of total efforts and energy that we spend in our life, actions are as little as less than 10% and more that 90% emanate from our reactions. This is one important reason why we are high of intents and low on implementation.

So, would you not like to dump above 6 tendencies as much as you can, to allow terrific thoughts or quotes to shape a terrific life for you?

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Creativity and Innovativeness come, when we kill fear and create freedom!

An Innovative idea! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

All of us need to be a good manager, supervisor or go getter; but that alone is not be good enough to keep us going. After a certain point, we experience a level of saturation, things appear to have come to a plateau or we face a knot. What was motivating becomes monotonous; excitement ebbs and our performance becomes poorer for what we were otherwise good at!

Everyone encounters above phase or phenomenon consciously or unconsciously. Only exceptions are those who are creative or innovative! Creativity and innovativeness are 2 qualities, which you need to keep your interest and initiative alive and drive in the fast lane. Common perception is that one can run her/his life without these 2 qualities. Yes, one can but then, it would lack luster, liveliness and charm. It would be mired in inertia and comfort zones!

Further, the most talked about word is “Change”. But, most of us are ignorant that very important constituents of “Change” are creativity and innovativeness. Then, there is a misconception that creativity and innovativeness are gifts of God or it comes through genes and it is difficult to develop the same. Such ideas need to be dumped; if you make an efforts, you can become creative and innovative at any stage of life. Only obstacle is the wall built by you in your mind! Key to become creative and innovative is to overcome fear and own freedom!!

Look at some of the top creative and innovative people, who have changed the world and lives of billions – Einstein, Thomas Edison, Benjamin Franklin, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Leonardo Da Vinci, Jeff Bezos of Amazon and Larry Page of Google. They have discovered path breaking ideas to usher dramatic change/s. Most common characteristics with all of these people are or were fearlessness and freedom to think!

Fear and freedom are nothing but opposite states of our mind! So, how to drive fear away and derive freedom?

Overcoming fear!

Fear is essentially a negative emotion, which emerges out of past negative experience or memories. Challenge is that there are host of negative emotions arising from your past – anger, anxiety, arrogance, greed, obsession ad like. You can’t pick and choose one negative emotion i.e. fear and believe that you can drop same. Doing that would only have temporary effect and then it would resurface, because you are still holding on to other negative emotions! As a matter of fact, you would be surprised to know that you should not be passionate about positive emotions like pleasure, thrill, ecstasy or even consolation arising out of your past experience or memories. Reason is that when you recall such positive emotions from past, you would not be able to help prevent negative emotions also from past to surface. This is one of the main reasons, why most people are not able to overcome their fears!

The best bet is to use past memories as a source of knowledge but never a source of emotions! It is the emotions that evolve out of present, which alone can give you excellent feelings and make you frolic!! 

So, to drop fear:

  1. Do not give importance to emotions, which are connected with your past memories. Ignore!
  2. Minimize your preconceived notions.
  3. Believe in putting trust on people and banish doubts.
  4. Focus on efforts but not on results.
  5. Practice to drop hesitation or inhibitions.

Owning freedom!

There is lot of ill-conceived notions about freedom. Freedom does mean right to express oneself through any medium and working at one’s own will. But, many consider getting bound by duties and discipline is loss of freedom, which is bunk. Freedom does not mean exercising no control or restrain and be able to do freely what you desire.

You can own freedom, only when you accept that others have a right to own their own (freedom)! Freedom has more to do with absence of mental barriers or restrictions than physical barriers/restrictions; no doubt the latter is integral to freedom but it loses meaning without the former!!

Now, to own freedom:

  1. First and foremost is to overcome fear, as mentioned above.
  2. Be prepared to break conventions and customs, if need be.
  3. Be an optimist and open minded.
  4. Drop hard notions and prejudices.
  5. Traits, habits and ego could be show stoppers for your freedom.
  6. Believe that nature offers infinite possibilities and mankind has so far discovered only a small portion of the same.
  7. Biggest challenge to your freedom or free thinking comes surprisingly from your faith, culture, traditions, rituals, gurus, mentors and role models. You generally need them for a guided and balanced life; but at the same time, they inculcate in you predetermined ideas and perceptions, and hence limit your ability to go beyond, explore and experience something entirely new.
    So, you need a very careful tradeoff between traditional beliefs/practices and true freedom!

To conclude, it is a glorious idea to get rid of fear and ride on freedom, which would bring creativity and innovativeness well within your reach and you would be able to reap rich fruits!!

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