The 7 Principles of Giving + July Giving Challenge

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive away hate, only love can do that.”

After the amazing response to the June gratitude challenge, CLR is back with its July Challenge. The Challenge this time is to inculcate a feeling of giving in our everyday life. It is aptly named “Get going with Giving” Challenge.

Join our challenge

Join our challenge

 

We live the best expression of ourselves when we give in greater proportion than what we receive. When we give we not just help the other person but we also make ourselves happy.

I have often seen people want to give. But they struggle to do so because of the way they approach the concept of giving. There are many lies associated with it which prevent us from doing the task. See if any of them has ever put your efforts to a stop?

1) Giving takes a lot of time. And I am genuinely busy.

You must always strive to give what you have. For example if you are a doctor you can give away some free consultations to poor children every month. It won’t be a burden on your time and it will immensely benefit the people you help. Giving doesn’t necessarily have to include clothes and books. It just needs small things given or services delivered with love. We will discuss more on this on Day 1 of our challenge.

2) I must always give to poor people.

This is what we mostly think about giving. Although it is really nice to help the disadvantaged sections of the society, some giving to normal people around you won’t hurt either. In fact, it will make you stronger and a better person. We will discuss more on this on Day 2 of our challenge.

3) Giving only includes old clothes and broken cookies.

Once upon a time, a couple decided to bake cookies. The cookies turned out nice. There was just one problem. Some of them were broken. So the boy told the girl that they must give the broken cookies to homeless people they see on the street every day. “That is okay”, the girl replied, “but don’t you think we must give them a cookie along with the crumbs? They are the ones who most need hope in their life.”

The above story sums it up. Giving includes the old books, the worn out clothes but also things that signify hope.

4) I will give after I have plenty.

This is hands down the most common lie that holds people back from giving. If you think that you can give only after you have a lot of money, forget about giving altogether. Because you never ever will have enough money. Instead find out how you can help people? It may be without giving away money. You can volunteer to teach people for a whole year just like I did. But the fact remains that you must give beginning now, not wait for some miraculous day when you start earning enough to give.

5) Giving has to be materialistic in nature. And I am not rich.

People appreciate it when you give them money, clothes and gifts but that doesn’t mean they are the only things they want. Sometimes all a person needs is a friendly ear and a cup of tea. Sometimes you can make a stranger’s day just by passing a smile. Sometimes you can take some children out to play and notice how pleased they are by your gesture.

“Give away what a person needs not what you think he wants. “ – CLR

We will discuss more on this on Day 5 of our challenge.

6) I will give only to others.

Giving is an art. It includes not just the help you can do to others but also all the help you could do to yourself. You need to be a champion as much for yourself as for others. This acts as a fairly awesome self-esteem builder. We will discuss more on this on Day 6 of our challenge.

7) Receiving the kindness is for others, not for me.

You can never really know about the power of giving until you receive something from someone and are able to heartily accept it. Sometimes, we become so comfortable in helping others but cringe at the mere thought of receiving help. This is unhealthy behavior. You never go out and demand help from someone but you won’t be a needy or a weak person of you accept someone’s kindness a day or two. The experience will motivate you to move forward and be more perceptive towards life. We will discuss more on this on Day 7 of our challenge.

 

The seven principles of giving are as follows:

1. Give what you have.
2. Give to everyone.
3. Give as if your life depends on it.
4. Give before you receive.
5. Give them a smile.
6. Give to yourself.
7. Be okay with receiving too.

Answered below are some questions related to the challenge.

When does the challenge start? When does it end?

The challenge starts this Thursday i.e. July 17, 2014. It is a 7 day challenge and ends on Wednesday July 23, 2014.

Why should I join the challenge?

You should join the challenge because you are awesome and so is giving and helping people.

How can I join the challenge?

Joining the challenge is easy. You just have to fill this form and you are ready to go. You will receive email updates for each day’s task and a Facebook accountability group to support you in the journey further.(The link will be emailed to the address you provide a day before the event starts.)

What do you think about the challenge? Any thing in particular you want us to incorporate in the challenge? Share your views in the comments section.

Connect with me on Facebook and Twitter.

You Owe It To Yourself To Try

I have written a small 10 lines poem on taking the first step to achieve a dream. I have also made a poster to go along with it. You can download the poster and put it as a desktop wallpaper or place it somewhere where you can see it to get a quick but lasting dose of inspiration.

Hope you enjoy it!

Try

Well you owe it to yourself to try.

Poetry Text

Even if you feel like you can’t do it,
you owe it to yourself to try.

Even if you think it is difficult,
you owe it to yourself to try.

Even if you think that other people are better at it,
you owe it to yourself to try.

Even if you think that you’ll fail,
you owe it to yourself to try.

Even if you think that you are inadequate,
you owe it to yourself to try.

Even if you think you are ill prepared,
you owe it to yourself to try.

Even if you think you’ll be ridiculed,
you owe it to yourself to try.

Even if you think you’ll lose it all,
you owe it to yourself to try.

Even if you think you are 3 years too late,
you owe it to yourself to try.

In fact it is precisely due to these reasons that
you owe it to yourself to try.

What are your thoughts on giving life a chance? Is it important to try and take the first step?

P.S. – Do not leave before downloading the poster.

Poster Credits

How Life Is – My Favorite Poems

Life has dealt a rough hand to someone really close to me. Although there has been no change in my life but the differences are all too apparent.

I am in no condition to write but did not want to miss this week. So, I decided to share 3 of my favorite poems with you.

BELIEVE IN YOURSELF- Thinking by Walter Wintle

Believe in yourself Image Credits

Believe in yourself
Image Credits

If you think you are beaten, you are,
If you think you dare not, you don’t.
If you like to win, but you think you can’t,
It is almost certain you won’t.

If you think you’ll lose, you’re lost,
For out in the world we find,
Success begins with a fellow’s will.
It’s all in the state of mind.

If you think you are outclassed, you are,
You’ve got to think high to rise,
You’ve got to be sure of yourself before
You can ever win a prize.

Life’s battles don’t always go
To the stronger or faster man.
But soon or late the man who wins,
Is the man who thinks he can.

Lesson: The importance of self-belief is evident in life’s small and big successes. Fake it till you make it. True for a smile and self-confidence.

DON’T SETTLE – The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost

Don't settle Image Credits

Don’t settle
Image Credits

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I marked the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Lesson: Never ever be afraid to do what you want to even if it’s not a popular path.

NEVER GIVE UP – Don’t Quit by Anonymous

Never give up Image Credits

Never give up
Image Credits

When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill;
When the funds are low and the debts are high-
When you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit:
Rest if you must, but don’t you quit!

Don’t you quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns,
As everyone of us sometimes learns.
And many a failure turns about
When he might have won had he stuck it out!
Don’t give up though the pace seems slow-
You may succeed with another blow!

Success is failure turned inside out-
The silver tints of the clouds of doubt;
And you can never tell how close you are-
It may be near when it seems so far.
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit:
It’s when things seem worst that you mustn’t quit!

Lesson: It is in the times of deep worry that success seems so elusive. But don’t give up even though you want to. Success is just near the corner. Go for it and live it up.

 What are your favorite poems? Share with me in comments. I really need some good recommendations.

P.S. – Our June Gratitude Challenge is going on full force. Participants have already started noticing the benefits. You can know more about our FREE challenge here. :D

100 Small Ideas for a Majestic Life

1. Get up at 5 am.
2. Meditate.
3. Learn from everything.
4. Learn from everyone.
5. Read “The 4 hour workweek”.
6. Help others.
7. Talk to your friends.
8. Give someone a surprise gift.
9. Exercise.
10. Write.
11. Take risks.
12. Sell something.
13. Be comfortable with not being comfortable.
14. Be assertive.
15. Agree to disagree.
16. Limit distractions.
17. Learn to speed read.
18. Learn investing.
19. Save first, spend later.
20. Give before you spend.
21. Learn to manage money.
22. Do something for your country.
23. Do something for poor.
24. Do something for yourself.
25. Think positive thoughts.26. Embrace non-perfectionism.
27. Learn to accept an apology.
28. Say sorry.
29. Say thank you.
30. Say Congratulations.
31. Make 3 very very very very good friends.
32. Talk to God.
33. Listen to Him.
34. Make time to learn.
35. Create rather than consume.
36. Take a walk.
37. Learn about your partner.
38. Make a happy life.
39. Learn swimming.
40. Read “The 7 habits of highly effective people”.
41. Meet like-minded people.
42. Meet people who are different from you.
43. Seek a mentor.
44. Make 2 more friends.
45. Start a journal.
46. Plan your day.
47. Plan your week.
48. Plan your year.
49. Keep space for surprises.
50. Read about minimalism.

51. Be vulnerable.
52. Read “ZenHabits”.
53. Be insane (sometimes)
54. Eat less food.
55. Smile.
56. Be grateful.
57. Watch less TV.
58. Spend 5 minutes with yourself daily.
59. Cook something.
60. Read “The Road Less Travelled”.
61. Say “I love you” to your parents.
62. Find people who inspire you.
63. Find your purpose.
64. Volunteer for a NGO.
65. Spread goodness.
66. Stop engaging in mindless gossip.
67. Know your strengths.
68. Work on them each day.
69. Read “Live Your Legend”
70. Forgive.
71. Ask.
72. Say no.
73. Make a life not a living.
74. Be a leader.
75. Be a mentor.
76. Mess things up.
77. DO all you want to.
78. Make a bucket list.
79. Get coached.
80. Be kind.
81. Talent is overrated. Believe in practice.
82. Read something you don’t like.
83. Read “Sophie’s world”.
84. Run a marathon.
85. Spend a few minutes every day with someone below 6 or above 60 years of age.
86. Don’t hate anyone.
87. Focus on the small things. They make up 99% of your life.
88. Don’t do anything just because you have to. Find something you love.
89. Travel alone once.
90. Get out of your comfort zone.
91. Believe in yourself.
92. Dance. Sing. Even if you are not good at it.
93. Believe in your ideas.
94. Build your willpower.
95. Meet people smarter than you.
96. Accept help and love.
97. Let people learn. Don’t try to give someone else’s exam.
98. Make people laugh.
99. Be spiritual.
100. Live 100%.

What are some of the small ideas that can spark a revolution? Share in the comments below.

P.S. – Our June Gratitude Challenge is going on full force. Participants have already started noticing the benefits. You can know more about our FREE challenge here. :D

CLR Challenges + June Gratitude Challenge

A very warm welcome to a fantastic June!

Beginning this month, we will have a special challenge each month for our readers that can help us grow together. Something that facilitates my desire of learning something from everyone I encounter. And something that facilitates my readers to go through a process of personality development too.

The challenges will work through Facebook. We will provide you with weekly worksheets, daily reminders on Facebook, support if you are progressing inadequately or slowly (there is no such thing by the way) and accountability.

The June Gratitude Challenge

This month we will focus on the power of gratitude to change our lives. We have all heard about the importance of gratitude and how if practiced daily it can cause “immense happiness” side effect.

WHY GRATITUDE?

Take the time every day to be thankful for everything that you have. You can always have more, but you could also have less. — Mohd Uved

  • There are 2 types of people in this world. The ones that are always grateful and happy in their lives and the other ones, who are dissatisfied, constantly snap and worry insanely. The trick to a happy life is to be in the former set. Why? Because as {} observed, “Worrying does not empty tomorrow of its struggles, it empties today of its strength.” Worrying never decreases anything except the state of your life. The only option left is to approach life with a sense of gratitude.
  • Gratitude improves our health, relationships, emotions, personality, and career. Having material possessions is important but we get used to it pretty fast and it no longer serves the same purpose it did before.
  • Gratitude makes you a better decision maker, increases your productivity and obviously speeds up your progress.
  • Gratitude dissipates the feeling of guilt, jealousy and envy and helps us get a better control on our emotions.
  • Gratitude makes us less self-centered and helps us enjoy life.
  • Gratitude improves your sleep, increases your energy levels and helps you live longer.
  • Gratitude has the power to immediately change our mood from snappy to calm and makes us a more balanced person in the long run.

Are you convinced?

If the above benefits have convinced you, then please come and be a part of the challenge here. If you think that the post is incomplete, it was intended to be this way. Join us in June and get to experience all this in real time. And yes, you will get weekly assignments, new discoveries on gratitude, the science behind gratitude and various other resources. You will also have daily reminders on Facebook, support if you are progressing inadequately or slowly and accountability within the group.

Let us count blessings this once instead of counting our burdens. Join us here.

P.S. – Do not miss this chance. Just give it a try; if you are not satisfied with the group, you are welcome to leave it anytime.

 

How to Never Miss a Blog Post Again

I publish my posts on Tuesdays. But last Tuesday, I did not publish my post. All this despite the fact that I absolutely adore writing.

So why did this happen?

I could not write because of 2 reasons:

I was craving perfection in writing.

I wanted my blog post to be perfect. I wanted to write something that can be appreciated by my readers and friends. I wanted to write a gem that shines. All this actually prevented me from writing in the first place, let alone editing and fine-polishing it later.

I did not want to stop doing the activity I was already doing.

I was reading a thriller. In the midst of all the suspense, I just didn’t feel like switching my laptop on, writing a post, searching for an appropriate image, putting links and then publishing it. After all, having a blog is more about than just writing. So, it became all the more easier to skip a post in favor of finishing the important chapter of the book.

After feeling guilty for some days, I learnt my lessons (after I finished my thriller :P) The lessons I learnt are the ones that are applicable to you too. I sincerely hope this helps as consistency is very important for us authors.

#1: Write a shitty first draft

Everyone who has wanted to write has often come across this term by Anne Lamott. Although this is a common saying but nothing truer could be said. It is very important to write a shitty first draft. I am not asking you to purposely write a bad draft, just reminding you that keep on writing even if you feel you are writing shit.

“Almost all good writing begins with terrible first efforts. You need to start somewhere.”~ Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

Embrace the non-perfect writing. There will be time later to edit it and make it presentable but at this moment all you have to do is to get the thoughts on paper.

Golden rule: The only rule on becoming a writer is to write and keep writing shitty first drafts. The golden rule here is to write when you feel like writing and write more when you don’t feel like writing.

#2: Edit

I have seen many authors publish  a badly edited post. If it is important to write a pathetic first draft, it is mandatory to edit and fine-polish it till you strike gold- a piece of writing that makes sense.

Each post you write is your introduction to the world. Make it a good one.

A writer friend once confessed to me that he had made 14 revisions to the post that is now among his “best posts ever.” I usually go with 4-5 revisions while fine polishing my writing. I have found that usually 60-70% of the content is re-written while editing and re-editing.

Golden rule: While editing do away with all those words, sentences and paragraphs that do not add to the text at all. Ask yourself this simple question,”If I remove this word(or sentence or paragraph), would there be some deterioration in writing?” If the answer is no, chop it right away.

#3: Be consistent

It is important to edit but don’t be stuck in the process craving perfection( like I did last Tuesday) Go through a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 15 edits and then take a decision on it, whether you are going to publish it or trash it. Do not save it for later.

“It’s not what we do once in a while that shapes our lives. It’s what we do consistently.” ~ Anthony Robbins

CONSISTENCY is the most important thing that a writer has to learn. If you have a choice between writing not-that-great-a-post on schedule and writing a great post but missing the schedule, I would recommend choosing the former.

Golden rule: Decide on a schedule before hand and stick to that schedule no matter what. The schedule must be specific enough like “publishing  a post each Wednesday” not something vague like “writing whenever I get time.”

#4: Prepare a backlog of posts

You begin with your journey. You are very excited and swear that you would never miss a post. After all, you are not like the others, you are actually serious about this stuff. But then, life happens. You not only find out that have missed writing for 2 weeks straight but also that you are uncomfortable in writing itself now. It is then that this helps. When life takes its twists and turns, be prepared with a backlog of at least 25% of your total posts in an year. If you write once a week, ideally you must have 13 posts already written ready to be used in case you are not able to write as usual. Another way this helps is by providing you clarity relating to your message. If you write 13 posts about a single topic, you will obviously find out whether it is the right pick for you or not.

Golden rule: Before you decide to start your blog, write 25% of your posts already. It will not only give you something to fall back upon if life happens but also provide you with much needed clarity about your topic and writing in itself.

#5: Write well in advance

This is the most important practice. I write  the first draft of my posts at least 3 days before it has to be published. This helps with two things.

  • I get enough time to edit and re-edit.
  • I am well prepared with my writing even if some problem occurs at the last moment.

Ideally, there must be a month’s gap between writing and editing the first draft. But I make do with at least a day’s gap. A day’s gap is required so that you give some time for your writing to settle in, to ensure that you do not fall in love with your first draft. Plus taking a look at it after some time will bring fresh perspective to it. The simple errors that you weren’t able to point out earlier will be clearer.

Golden rule: If you publish Tuesday, make it a point to finish first draft on Friday. After all, you only want your best to go out.

#6: Make it short but make it

This is the crunch of everything. First of all, don’t get caught in the process of publishing. Make it a point to devote time to hone your skills. Do not write unnecessary words to make it a long article. Write only what is necessary. Hack away at the unessential. And do not avoid writing, make it even if it is just 4 lines.

“Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor, the enemy of the people. It will keep you cramped and insane your whole life, and it is the main obstacle between you and a shitty first draft. I think perfectionism is based on the obsessive belief that if you run carefully enough, hitting each stepping-stone just right, you won’t have to die. The truth is that you will die anyway and that a lot of people who aren’t even looking at their feet are going to do a whole lot better than you, and have a lot more fun while they’re doing it.”~ Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

Golden rule: Do not avoid consistency at any cost. It is so important that I wrote about it twice. Make it short but make it.

Now a quote to get you by:

“You are lucky to be one of those people who wishes to build sand castles with words, who is willing to create a place where your imagination can wander. We build this place with the sand of memories; these castles are our memories and inventiveness made tangible. So part of us believes that when the tide starts coming in, we won’t really have lost anything, because actually only a symbol of it was there in the sand. Another part of us thinks we’ll figure out a way to divert the ocean. This is what separates artists from ordinary people: the belief, deep in our hearts, that if we build our castles well enough, somehow the ocean won’t wash them away. I think this is a wonderful kind of person to be.” ~ Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

What are your tips and techniques to never miss a blog post again?

101 Most Inspiring Quotes of All Time

Quotes often pack up so much of mind boggling information in one sentence that reading them gives most of us some “aha” moments, an opportunity to smile hard, dream big and live life once again.

This is what I needed today. Something to cheer me up. Some wise words ringing so loud in my head that I forget everything else.

So I came up with a list of my own, something I could refer to afterwards also. For easy referral, they are classified into different categories.

Quotes on life
Quotes on purpose
Quotes on passion
Quotes on courage
Quotes on happiness
Quotes on failure
Quotes on change

QUOTES ON LIFE

  1. If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten. – Tony Robbins
  2. The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person who is doing it. – Chinese Proverb
  3. You will find that it is necessary to let things go; simply for the reason that they are heavy. So let them go, let go of them. I tie no weights to my ankles. – C. JoyBell C.
  4. Success is a little like wrestling a gorilla. You don’t quit when you’re tired. You quit when the gorilla is tired. – Robert Strauss
  5. Don’t go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first. – Mark Twain
  6. One of the most important keys to Success is having the discipline to do what you know you should do, even when you don’t feel like doing it. – Unknown
  7. Good things come to those who wait… greater things come to those who get off their ass and do anything to make it happen.- Unknown
  8. My life is my message.- Gandhi
  9. We can’t be afraid of change. You may feel very secure in the pond that you are in, but if you never venture out of it, you will never know that there is such a thing as an ocean, a sea. Holding onto something that is good for you now, may be the very reason why you don’t have something better. – C. JoyBell C.
  10. People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing. That’s why we recommend it daily. – Zig Ziglar
  11. It is our choices, which show what we truly are, far more than our abilities. – J. K Rowling
  12. You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else. – Albert Einstein
  13. Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life – think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body, be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success. – Swami Vivekananda
  14. Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. – Mark Twain
  15. Man’s mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions. – Oliver Wendell Holmes
  16. Realize that now, in this moment of time, you are creating. You are creating your next moment. That is what’s real. – Sara Paddison
  17. Believe you can and you’re halfway there. – Theodore Roosevelt

  18. I am thankful for all of those who said NO to me. It’s because of them I’m doing it myself. – Albert Einstein
  19. Lose yourself in your hard work and determination to realize your true potential. – Life lessons from a rose
  20. We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience. – Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

QUOTES ON PURPOSE

  1. You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore. – Christopher Columbus
  2. Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever. – Mahatma Gandhi
  3. Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect. – Mark Twain
  4. I want to live my life in such a way that when I get out of bed in the morning, the devil says, “aw shit, he’s up! – Steve Maraboli
  5. Life is filled with unanswered questions, but it is the courage to seek those answers that continues to give meaning to life. You can spend your life wallowing in despair, wondering why you were the one who was led towards the road strewn with pain, or you can be grateful that you are strong enough to survive it. – J.D. Stroube
  6. I cannot believe that the purpose of life is to be happy. I think the purpose of life is to be useful, to be responsible, to be compassionate. It is, above all to matter, to count, to stand for something, to have made some difference that you lived at all. – Leo Rosten
  7. Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary. – Steve Jobs
  8. Here is the test to find whether your mission on earth is finished. If you’re alive, it isn’t. – Richard Bach
  9. Everyone has his own specific vocation or mission in life… Therein he cannot be re­placed, nor can his life be repeated. Thus, everyone’s task is as unique as is his specific opportunity to implement it. – Viktor Frankl
  10. “A man said to the universe: ‘Sir, I exist!’
    ‘However,’ replied the universe.
    ‘The fact has not created in me
    A sense of obligation.” – Stephen Crane
  11. Maybe you can afford to wait. Maybe for you there’s a tomorrow. Maybe for you there’s one thousand tomorrows, or three thousand, or ten, so much time you can bathe in it, roll around it, let it slide like coins through you fingers. So much time you can waste it.
    But for some of us there’s only today. And the truth is, you never really know. – Lauren Oliver

QUOTES ON PASSION

  1. I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious. – Albert Einstein
  2. If you can dream it, you can achieve it. – Zig Ziglar
  3. You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.- Steve Jobs
  4. There is only one way to succeed in anything and that is to give everything. – Vince Lombardi
  5. The saddest people I’ve ever met in life are the ones who don’t care deeply about anything at all. Passion and satisfaction go hand in hand, and without them, any happiness is only temporary, because there’s nothing to make it last. – Nicholas Sparks
  6. There are no traffic jams along the extra mile. – Roger Staubach
  7. You become what you believe. – Oprah Winfrey
  8. If you hear a voice within you say “you cannot paint,” then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced. – Vincent Van Gogh
  9. The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me. – Ayn Rand
  10. Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do. – Steve Jobs

  11. I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination. – Jimmy Dean
  12. At first dreams seem impossible, then improbable, then inevitable.- Christopher Reeve
  13. Remembering you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.- Steve Jobs.
  14. Don’t ask yourself what the world needs, ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who are alive.- Howard Thurman
  15. All our dreams can come true – if we have the courage to pursue them. – Walt Disney
  16. If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put foundations under them.- Henry David Thoreau
  17. No matter where you are in life right now, no matter who you are, no matter how old you are – it is never too late to be who you are meant to be. – Esther & Jerry Hicks
  18. I challenge you to make your life a masterpiece. I challenge you to join the ranks of those people who live what they teach, who walk their talk.- Tony Robbins
  19. I believe you are your work. Don’t trade the stuff of your life, time, for nothing more than dollars. That’s a rotten bargain. – Rita Mae Brown
  20. Make no small plans for they have no power to stir the soul. – Niccolo Machiavelli
  21. History shows us that the people who end up changing the world – the great political, social, scientific, technological, artistic, even sports revolutionaries – are always nuts, until they are right, and then they are geniuses. – John Eliot

QUOTES ON COURAGE AND DETERMINATION

  1. Fall seven times and stand up eight. -Japanese Proverb
  2. There are no shortcuts to any place worth going. – Beverly Sills
  3. A year from now you may wish you had started today. – Karen Lamb
  4. Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by,
    And that has made all the difference. – Robert Frost
  5. You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don’t try. – Beverly Sills
  6. I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed. – Michael Jordan
  7. I attribute my success to this: I never gave or took any excuse. – Florence Nightingale
  8. Eighty percent of success is showing up. – Woody Allen
  9. I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.- Thomas A. Edison
  10. Do one thing every day that scares you.- Eleanor Roosevelt
  11. It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.- Leonardo da Vinci
  12. Let it be a lesson in determination and how not “giving in” and “giving up” in life will eventually take you to great heights. – Life lessons from a rose
  13. Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in, except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force. Never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy. – Winston Churchill
  14. It is never too late to be what you might have been. – George Eliot
  15. You cannot swim for new horizons until you have courage to lose sight of the shore. – William Faulkner

QUOTES ON HAPPINESS

  1. When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life. – John Lennon
  2. What’s money? A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and goes to bed at night and in between does what he wants to do. – Bob Dylan
  3. It isn’t what you have, or who you are, or where you are, or what you are doing that makes you happy or unhappy. It is what you think about. – Dale Carnegie
  4. Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy. – Thich Nhat Hanh
  5. There are more things to alarm us than to harm us, and we suffer more often in apprehension than reality. – Seneca
  6. Happiness is acceptance. – Unknown
  7. Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened. – Dr. Seuss
  8. Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own. – Robert A. Heinlein
  9. Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know.- Ernest Hemingway
  10. There’s nothing like deep breaths after laughing that hard. Nothing in the world like a sore stomach for the right reasons.- Stephen Chbosky

QUOTES ON FAILURE

  1. Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.- Winston Churchill
  2. Pain is temporary. Quitting lasts forever. – Lance Armstrong
  3. Most great people have attained their greatest success just one step beyond their greatest failure. – Napolean Hill
  4. If you fell down yesterday, stand up today. – H.G. Wells
  5. Nothing in the world is ever completely wrong. Even a stopped clock is right twice a day. – Paulo Coelho
  6. When defeat comes, accept it as a signal that your plans are not sound, rebuild those plans, and set sail once more toward your coveted goal. Napoleon Hill
  7. Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right.- Henry Ford
  8. Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people.- Eleanor Roosevelt
  9. Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat.- F. Scott Fitzgerald
  10. Don’t spend time beating on a wall, hoping to transform it into a door. – Coco Chanel
  11. You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it. – Maya Angelou

  12. I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed. –Michael Jordan
  13. There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.- Paulo Coelho
  14. Don’t worry about failures, worry about the chances you miss when you don’t even try.- Jack Canfield
  15. Win as you are used to it, lose as you like it.

QUOTES ON NEW BEGINNINGS/CHANGES

  1. Be the change that you wish to see in the world.- Mahatma Gandhi
  2. All great changes are preceded by chaos. – Deepak Chopra
  3. They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself. – Andy Warhol
  4. Learn the lesson to always be in touch with the flower inside you. Let it guide you through all your difficulties and take you on the path to make a difference. – Life lessons from a rose
  5. Change is not pleasant, but change is constant. Only when we change and grow, we’ll see a world we never know. – From Wisdom of The Orange Woodpecker
  6. For last year’s words belong to last year’s language
    And next year’s words await another voice.
    And to make an end is to make a beginning. – T.S. Eliot
  7. You cannot control what happens to you, but you can control your attitude toward what happens to you, and in that, you will be mastering change rather than allowing it to master you. – Sri Ram
  8. Change will not come if we wait for some other person, or if we wait for some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek. – Barack Obama
  9. Your life does not get better by chance, it gets better by change. – Jim Rohn

 

What are some of your favorite quotes?

Rest: A Forgotten Life Necessity

“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.”
― John Lubbock, The Use Of Life

It is time to stop. Take a deep breath. Now, take another one.
Life has two central themes: activity and rest. And both of them are equally significant. Rest is as important to us as is action and all the activity around us.

Definition of Rest: “Cease work or movement in order to relax, sleep, or recover strength.”

For me activity is all that is. I used to cringe at the thought of what all I would miss if I take a day off. But what I often overlooked is the fact that in order to give my best each day, I needed some time off once in a while, so that I could give my mind and body some space to renew and recuperate.

A well rested person can come back with renewed energy and a fresh perspective. This results in increased productivity, better relationships, lesser stress, healthier body and a more energetic you. Sometimes, we need to slow down and just enjoy life. I realized that we need to start accepting our own company, start spending some time with our own selves.

Although I still struggle with rest once in a while, here are some tips that I have found useful to integrate the practice of rest in everyday life.

1. Take time to rest

Schedule rest in your life. Schedule it for a few minutes each day or even a few minutes per week if daily practice is impossible. In those few minutes, do anything that calms you and renews you. I now schedule 15 minutes (usually more) each day to rest. Some ways I incorporate rest in my daily life are:

• Meditate for 5 minutes
• Take deep breaths
• Talk to a friend
• Listen to music
• Read
• Take a walk alone
• Take a nap
• Dance

Take a day off each week, take a weekend off every 2 months and take a vacation at least once a year.

“Take rest; a field that has rested gives a bountiful crop.” – Ovid

walk-3641

2. Stay away from the screens in your rest period

In order to let your body and mind relax and recuperate, try to limit your contact with the screens that control your life aka TV, mobile, PC, laptop etc. It may prove to be difficult. Don’t give in though. While you rest, start becoming aware of your urge to constantly stay in touch with the people around you, your dependence on the things that do not really matter in life.

“He that can take rest is greater than he that can take cities.” – Benjamin Franklin

3. Let go of unfinished tasks

It is impossible for me to let go of things unfinished. I feel a compulsion to first read my mails, make my bed, organize my room, check Facebook, study for test, finish an important paper etc before I take out time to rest. The problem with this is that once I am done with all this stuff (that is if I ever am); there is no time to rest. And life is uninterrupted flow of many such days. So, it is advisable to let yourself rest for a few minutes before starting these activities. Take time out to rest even if you are in middle of the most urgent work that day.

“What is without periods of rest will not endure.” – Ovid

4. Stop feeling guilty about taking a day off

STOP feeling guilty each time you schedule a day off in your life. STOP thinking if that day could be better utilized doing something else. STOP arguing with yourself. Rest.

After you rest, you will return rejuvenated. You will have more desire, capacity and effectiveness to do all tasks. And the returns will be better too.

“Every now and then go away, have a little relaxation, for when you come back to your work your judgment will be surer.” – Leonardo da Vinci

It is absolutely important to give yourself some rest and spend some time with yourself in the process. A person who knows himself can conquer the world.

“Silence

It has a sound, a fullness.
It’s heavy with sigh of tree,
and space between breaths.
It’s ripe with pause between birdsong
and crash of surf.
It’s golden they say.
But no one tells us it’s addictive.”
― Angela Long

7 Ways to Always Give Your Best

I still remember that day. As a part of my volunteership with a program that required us to teach people employability skills, I(along with my friends) had to go for a community mobilization session wherein we were required to convince people to join our program which would give them better employability skills for free. It was a sunny and humid October afternoon. The area that was given to us belonged to a poor neighborhood. People there did not have jobs. But, to join a program that would require as much commitment as this one was something they were not willing to go for. Just imagine, you are jobless AND poor. Someone comes along and offers you a program custom-made for you, offering you employability skills and a job fair also. You would be crazy not to take it right? That is what we thought.

 

Although we began with great enthusiasm but gradually it declined. Eventually, it dwindled to a point that most of us were tired and approached the task in a very bad mood. There was a girl Sonali with us who was still trying to educate people about the benefits of the program and that too with the same zeal we all started with. I was curious and also perplexed by the way she could maintain her enthusiasm even though most of us had quit well before the quitting time. So I asked her. Her answer was very simple yet very profound. She said, “As long as I am here and giving it one half of my entire day, I might as well do it with all the energy I have. At least I will impact some people.” She then told me to give my 100% in everything I do. Such a simple strategy helped her approach everything in a positive manner.

Wherever you are, be all there. ~ Jim Elliot

There are many scientifically proved reasons why giving 100% is significant.

1. It keeps you full of energy.

Whenever you give your best to something, you are always pumping with energy, energy to complete the task elegantly. Whenever you are full of energy, your productivity sky rockets. And so does your individual contribution to the task. You are able to give so much more than even your very best.

2. It keeps you happy and contented.

If you know you have given your best and probably could not have done any more than you actually did, it gives you a sense of contentment and satisfaction. You do not over think the thing. And you will probably do even much better the next time.

3. It keeps you in the now.

Whenever you fully concentrate on the task at hand, you will rarely find yourself drifting to the past or the future. You will actually be able to live in the now.

4. It inspires others to do their best.

When Sonali did her best to convince people to join our program, she inspired all of us others as well. The best part is that we inspired the other group to give their best as well. And who knows, they might have inspired yet another group of people.

If you give your best, you might just inspire hundreds of other people. Imagine the awesome ripple effects created to inspire the world.

If you do your best, there is no failure.

There are a lot of ways in which you can give your best in any situation.

1) Live in the moment.

If you are truly living in the now, you are not thinking about the past or future, not even about the thing you are going to do after reading this post. Only then, you will be able to give your best to the very thing you want to achieve.

2) Do what you love.

If you are pursuing your passion, you are motivated to do your best. It will automatically feed into your focus, concentration and will. If you are doing a task you do not necessarily like, ask yourself why you are doing it. Chances are that you will find a reason that will inspire you to give yourself over to the task.

3) Rest.

It is always a better idea to work for short periods without much interruption. Some people like to work for 50 minutes and then rest for 5 minutes. Others prefer working for 90 minutes and then resting for 10. Experiment and find out what works best for you. Also, take some rest time once a month and schedule some time off after each major task. It is important to rejuvenate yourself so that you can go to the next task without loss of energy or enthusiasm.

4) Don’t be scared of failure.

This is an important one. Most of the times we are so frightened of doing a task wrong that we don’t even start doing it, find a way to delay it or if we come along to doing it, we do it only half-heartedly. The next time you feel afraid to try, challenge yourself and give it your best shot. You will do much better than you anticipated.

5) Stay hungry. Stay foolish.

Always be eager to learn. Always be eager to achieve. If you don’t have goals already, start making goals and start the process of getting uncomfortable. Be sure to add on some goals that stretch you out of your comfort zone. If you don’t have something to achieve, then you don’t have anything to get excited about and you don’t have anything to give your best to.

6) Have a good attitude.

Always having a negative attitude about things prevents you from achieving them. A bad attitude single-handedly has the power to damage your entire world. Do not underestimate the power of a positive attitude towards life.

Expect the best. Prepare for the worst. Capitalize on what comes. ~ Zig Ziglar

Challenge yourself to find one positive about the worst thing that has happened to you each day.

7) Stop giving 100% to what you don’t want.

If you want to give your best to one task, you will have to say “NO” to many others. In order to achieve the highest you are capable of, you would have to say no to things that do not serve your best self. Get selective and focus on a few.

DO WHATEVER YOU WANT TO. BUT GIVE IT YOUR BEST.

Will you give your best today?

Life Lessons From a Rose

I am a rose. Today I invite you to witness a beautiful journey, a journey of my amazingly brilliant life.

Once, a seed was sown by some nice man. The seed after being immersed in soil for so long-lost its existence to the soil. It lost its identity and individuality. It lost hope to be a symbol of life tomorrow and forever.

Lose yourself in your hard work and determination to realize your true potential.

Then one fine day, roots emerged from the seed. It became the way I survived. It quickly claimed its position to be my survival mechanism. It stored water for me.

Similarly in life, always have a support system to encourage you when you are disheartened and to celebrate your many successes with you.

Gradually the shoot came out of the seed. Not because of its strength, but its persistence.

Let it be a lesson in determination and how not “giving in” and “giving up” in life will eventually take you to great heights.

Then my shoot sprouted into brilliant green leaves and adorable buds. And surrounded by all those thorns, I begin to shape my life.

I dance on thorns all my life and yet am called the king of flowers.

I want to teach you all not to forget to bloom and spread beauty all around even if life is just not fair.

I stay on the plant for a limited time and people love me, care for me. But as soon as I wither and get separated from the tree, my beauty diminishes for most people. I am no longer a thing of beauty.

Learn the lesson to always be in touch with the flower inside you. Let it guide you through all your difficulties and take you on the path to make a difference.

Summing up my life in a few words, I would like to quote George William Curtis, “The fragrance always stays in the hand that gives the rose.” Always give yourself to people who need you and mostly to your desires.

There is only one way to succeed in anything and that is to give everything. – Vince Lombardi

flower

A beautiful rose in my balcony

LIFE LESSONS FROM A ROSE

  1. Work hard and have faith in your abilities

  2. Have a group of people who act as your support system and do not let you fail.

  3. Don’t give up. Try it in different ways until it is done.

  4. Embrace failures and be a success in spite them. Never give hope. There’s always another chance.

  5. Be in touch with yourself. You lose that and you lose you. Game over.

  6. “There is only one way to succeed in anything and that is to give everything.” – Vince Lombardi
    Give it  your everything. Everything it takes to get the task done. Every. Damn. Thing.

What did you learn from a rose?