When Talent Deficit becomes a curse!

Well the last time we discussed about leadership, but the fact remains that to lead “someone or something” it needs to have intrinsic talent within itself to begin with! This article takes a look at a few shades and manifestations of talent deficit and how it impacts all of us- in one way or the other- whether we realise it or not!

I firmly believe in the principle of something what I call as “Where’s your river?” If you closely analyse about “human intelligence dysfunction” it has a lot to do with the crucial touch points during the formative years of one’s life (the place of birth, how many cities changed, in case of a country like India- what kind of regional nuances have been picked up and have been let go off etc.). Everything that everyone becomes is nothing more but a function of distillation of the experiences that one has been able to hold on to during their formative years– if you argue that you are still forming- well- no issues- keep going- you are a masterpiece in the works! ( Well I guess each one of us- that may be the reason why we are unique!) Now coming back to the fundamental aspect of all this- “The River”- well needless to say- every society will draw it’s best and worst from the very foundations that it stands upon!

Once you have observed enough and understood this simple engaging truth- you will begin to relate to all types of dysfunctions that you see around with greater ease, pace and more importantly learn to make peace with what the world (your world) offers you and you are left with only one choice- to do whatever best you can do- with what you have- improvise upon what you have- or keep sulking and cursing your fate for the time that you exist- it’s all about the choices that you are ready to make- whether to look up into the dark skies and seek stars for navigation or search for pits and dirt in the bright daylight that shines around you as you keep apace with the cycle of clarity and ambiguity as you seek to move ahead!

Now think about a school where teachers’ are complaining about brat students’- change the lens and see the parents’ complaining about dumb teachers’, dive a bit deeper and see the disconnect increase further as you reach college and universities- wherein the growing disconnect manifests into dangerous things- below average research, below average development of research values, below average future for able minds and stunted future for a society as research is stifled and truncated briskly- all of this because of the intrinsic challenges that arise from being part of a system that is constantly depleted of its ability to rejuvenate or innovate!

As these dysfunctions transcend into more serious areas of the society- jobs in firms, power positions in government, politics- nothing but chaos is unleashed and the depletion and complete destruction of the fragile fabric that enables a society to be proactive and intuition driven is simply ripped away!

Talent deficit is an end-product of a very complex societal dysfunction (some of which we touched in the paras above- albeit in a slightly different way) and the effects are far reaching- that is how regions, states, nations get labelled in the circles of business and politics- largely defined by the crispness or the blatant absence of meaningful minds that know when to solve an issue and when to avoid it and when to ignore it!

The greatest myth that people tend to pursue with talent development (based on it’s perceived absence or presence) is that it can be developed beyond the limits of the immediate societal contexts (socio- eco-political). Talent at any level- whether that’s a kindergarten kid that you are evaluating or a CEO level hire- is always a function of the society that it is coming from- values, beliefs, attitudes, aspirations, opportunities and all that goes into creating that individualistic identity. No one ever fished out a whale out of a bucket of water and no one ever landed on the moon by wishful thinking- that is the essence and underlying fundamental problem of not experiencing talent enough as we would want to.

The ways and means to resolve this and solve this- well that would be an apt topic for another write up- but until then spend some time and do reflect to see how you have experienced talent deficit around you- are you also one with it or are you the one who has suffered because of it!

Finally, before I leave you a little unsettled to figure out your thoughts- if you still are wondering what this write up was all about- try trusting your doctor or engineer who does not want to show you their academic credentials- and then think about someone like that to run or ruin nation!

Will be back soon with another piece- and possibly with some solutions to manage your nightmarish talent deficit!

Effective Leadership- Creating more empowered leaders

At a time when the world seems to be all over the place even as it spins around in space; the singular fundamental fact that has been overlooked across levels and across all nooks and corners of the societal fabric remains that we are undergoing a major deficit on “Effective Leadership” and this is one of the many fundamental flaws which is eventually taking its toll on individuals and societies!

No matter which part of the world you live or what your belief’s are (I mean, the faith you choose, don’t choose, whether you believe in humanity or not- irrespective of anything at all) your suffering will be directly proportional to the lack of effective leadership in the society immediately around you!

Can you recall or relate to the facts like – co-workers around you seem to be dumber by the day, casual approach is the new cool and people endlessly wait for instructions without even batting an eye-lid (just because that is what has been told to them!) Well these are all forms of micro-manifestations of lack of “effective leadership”. When leadership fails to deliver what it must and what is can- the symptoms are all around you and you alone will suffer (the leaders are always at a point and space beyond being impacted by this out-of-the-world-dumb acts (even though the very reason for their manifestation is the lack of sensible and directed leadership skills!). This was something bothering around your immediate work place and immediate area of comfort. There is another dimension to this which is more damaging and more dangerous then being funny!

When dumb people occupy critical and important positions (whether be it in private jobs or government assignments (read people who are meant to understand and suggest policy changes that impact not only your nation but also possibly play a role impacting the world- depending on how big or small the nuisance value of your nation is!) the situation goes from being funny and dumb to outright dangerous and also can lead to meltdown of nations and societies with grave consequences! You may ask- but what has this to do with “leadership failure”, well, it has everything to do with it! The very fact that dumb people go on to occupy important positions that impact lives of millions directly or indirectly is an evidence of myopic leadership which went on to choose something that should have kept aside for the larger good of the society and nation!

Ineffective leadership not only has the potential to harm the “Today” of a society or a nation but certainly has the potency to damage the societal fabric for the coming times ahead- this impact is directly proportional to the extent of damage done (across how may areas of the society and how deep this impact has been across the socio-economic class of the society!) So what is the solution or answer to reduce this , if not altogether eliminate this!

Well the solution is to ensure we have a Leadership that thrives on creating more leaders rather then myopic “yes men”. Unless Leadership is directed to harness human potential for succeeding generations with a view to keep up sustained growth and a vision that reflects and adapts to changing dynamics of the society in sync with the aspirations of the majority- anything and everything attempted to do for a society will end up being a wasted effort!

Effective Leadership- can be practiced and encouraged at all levels– whether it is allowing your kid to make choices and then relating the reasons for the choice made or it could be giving a youngster the first go-ahead for the first para-jump based on his/her assessment of his/her abilities and once they qualify the criterion wherein the damages are not completely fatal- then from thereon it is just successive steps for creating leaders! Within the confines of office spaces it is about – taking a step back and allow your team to lead and demonstrate what they can– so you know very well that- when you are long gone and wasted to time- you were indeed able to contribute to an organisation to create and system and process which goes on to harness the value of human potential and “effective leadership” is the fine tool which stays hidden among the many other interventions that go on to build long lasting organisations!

No matter who you are and what you do- there is always an opportunity to demonstrate “effective leadership” and trust me- all of that investment will come back to you in a way or the other and ensure the challenges of your life are simplified when you need them. Just ask a maths teacher, how he feels when he finds out that his student is a CEO of a financial corporation- (knowing very well he always earned a C in Maths and Economics! ) and his life’s saving were locked away in that bank!- Hope you got the picture!

Do a favor to yourself and others around you, start with what you can while you can and create spaces and opportunities for yourself and everyone around to practice and cherish “Effective Leadership” that alone is a tool to reduce dumbness around the world- Dumbness that seems funny and which can be outright catastrophic!

Leaving you with these thoughts, as you rush through your week- stay wise, stay safe and do what you can to reduce dumbness!

Wasted lives and the quest for immortality-the story of our times!

Yes, a completely different and refreshing take on what drives us, binds us and at the end of all blinds us to believe what we normally do and how these beliefs help and destroy us even as we strive to shape our lives in a quest to stay alive forever (read immortality) and end up doing more often then not what we are not designed to (read wasted lives!)

Just look around you- among your friends, colleagues, family members, just across to any random stranger- what seems striking is more then ever in the history of humankind, people in general are living and going about their lives as if they are going to live forever! and when the die (which they technically require to-until you have cyborgs roaming around that is!) it is often the case of misplaced priorities, lost opportunities and a lifetimes’s realization coming in just around the final turn- that what a waste it has been! Well, don’t panic and don’t jump to conclusions as yet, I am not suggesting anyway that all of us are wasted and wasting away- but this is an important anchor point of thought that one must be aware of to be absolutely sure that this is not how you want the last 10 minutes of your existence to be! So what is that we need to do about it and is there anything that we can really do about it!

People go around their lives impacting every other person that they engage with- these engagements and interactions are either sustained (in case of families and friends who cannot escape you) or are those fleeting flashes of encounters which either make to break things for the interacting individuals and at times build psyche that subsequently goes on to impact and alter subsequent engagements and interactions- long term and short term both! The challenge here is to ensure that quality of these engagements and interactions is really high and something that creates a new or a refreshing way of dealing and engaging. Think about this for a few minutes before you race ahead- How wonderful it would be if you are able to spread warmth every day and radiance like the warm winter sun and just brush that off to others around you to encourage them to the same- well sounds poetic and utopian- well it is indeed and this is also one of the reasons why our lives don’t end up being water color portraits is the contexts around us and how we decide to manage and navigate around them. While doing so however what happens is that we tend to become mediocre and start believing more about the context around us rather then reposing that faith into ourselves to prevail and overcome the contextual settings around us!

The net result of having more faith and belief in our contextual settings (read society and everything that is external to you) is that you end up using valuable time pursuing aspects and things that in the end will really not matter and no one will even remember of them having occurred in the next 100 years once the plug is pulled off your physical existence! Somewhere going about this- one experiences flashes of realization like- “This must be stopped”, “This is not what I want to do”, “What am I doing with my life”, but unless there is a sincere and focused effort to take a pause, reflect and seek what really life means for you and how you propose to ensure your idea on one aspect that you have experience can be altered in a way that you remain long after your physical experience is ceased- is the essence of the never ending quest for immortality!

As long as people continue to do things to manage and alter their immediate contextual environments with a myopic vision, they will eventually land up in the dreaded space of realizing towards the end- What a waste it has been!

A possible approach is to lead a mindful way of life- being mindful is all about being aware of what is going on in the moment and within the context of the time in the moment! It has to do a lot with dealing with everything and everyone around you within a set context of time without switching ahead into the future or slipping back into the past and trying to develop weighted perceptions based on the events already occurred or anticipating they may develop. Well this seems all easier said then done- but then nothing worthwhile in our lives has ever come easily – even to evolve to the biochemical machine that we are today- nature has taken millions of years!

There is a reason why we do not see more examples from our times- which we can confidently say will continue to impact and alter the way societies will function three hundreds years from now! Go back to history and stick around the 16th, 17th and earlier part of the 18th century- many of the things that were created, invented then have been the foundation which has enabled us live the lives that we live today- that is the point here! A closer look into the minds and lives of the people who made these things possible has a common thread (no matter which field they belonged to and what contribution they did) of being able to offer something that will stand the test of time and is built on simplicity and effectiveness and with an utilitarian value that reaches out to all sections of the society! This way and this approach is the essence of realizing immortality in a real sense. Immortality through ideas and solutions that go on to serve human kind for centuries after you physically cease to exist!

Pick up that coffee cup and spend some time today and give it a thought- “What is that you are doing with your life and what is that you want to be remembered for ever after – once you are physically taken away by time!

Do keep writing in with your suggestions/requests on what other topics/articles that you would like to share your time on. For coaching, talks, seminars and training programs offered by me towards empowerment and for customized solutions reach me at parimal.aluri@simplifylives.com.

Thriving through chaos!

As mythical it may seem, this is the fact, many a great discoveries, inventions and examples of unparalleled creativity have originated during moments and times that we now a days normally refer to as “chaos”.

What is chaos? Well the fact will always remain that chaos will always be different things for different people,this is not about choosing one definition over the other,but rather appreciating how these things and aspects are intertwined with us directly or indirectly and irrespective of your stand on this- all this shit will impact you on an ongoing basis- it is not a question of, “does it impact you?”, the question here is rather “how much does impact you?”

Well picking up a plain dictionary meaning of this five letter menace would provide us with straightforward interpretation of what it means and this is from where we can move ahead. For sake of simplicity and to ensure I complete this article crisply (before you decide to not read any further),I have approached chaos in a few major spheres of our lives- that impact us and shape us!

The first level is your personal zone and this provides you with replete examples of chaos around the two sub-spheres of your life- personal and professional. This in turn provides you with a templated approach on how you would like to go ahead managing this. Normally people would go in for a trade-off to balance and mitigate chaos across the two areas or spend considerable time and energy on an on-going basis to keep a shifting focus between the two sequentially. Neglecting chaos in any one of the fields will almost always lead to an irreversible damage which becomes all the more difficult to overcome as time progresses and eventually necessitates the individual to re-create a completely new identity in the sphere that has been wiped off from it’s foundations!

Next come an area of your immediate connections around the society space- as long as you have an access to a wise doctor, good education, water and air, entertainment you are alive and kicking- just imagine if one of these elements is touched adversely- now re-imagine the level of comfort you are likely to have- what happens if the medical charges suddenly increased by 200%? What would you do if educational expenses increased by 50%? Will that force you to rethink – “What are you doing with your life” and “Why you have landed up in a society, where you are” , well it almost always will and the interesting part is at this stage when chaos sets in- around your first level of contact with society- you are already unnerved and hopelessly, helplessly seeking out for leaders or someone to look up to, so that actions of the majority are emulated with a hope that things will change! This my friend is the first step of active action commonly known as “protest” when immediate aspects of societies that directly impact you go haywire for some or the other reasons. Again these reasons may or may not be completely in control of the ruling governments of the day- which in that context sets up another layer of chaos related to the resolution time-frame for the problems!

The final layer transcends over to the largest social unit that we experience on a daily basis – as a nation (unless you head the UN wherein you would experience all the 196 member states as one large society that looks as crazy as it is!) When we sense growing chaos or uncertainty (that’s how things start and run away into deeper chaotic shades unless checked in time) at a national level things suddenly change and trivial matters become sensitive and often dangerous issues which can be manipulated by multiple people or organisations and agendas get driven across- depending on who you are and each agenda tries to re-define the problem statement to suit a solution statement that is being manufactured. The competing narratives then get played out into the society at a national level and based on the number game (more often then not) the most loud, the most bloodiest or the most aggressive narrative gets to see the light of the day- from thereon it changes into a game of political strategy, bargaining and maneuvering on an ongoing basis!

So now , that we have seen how chaos manifests from the personal level to the level of a nation- the million dollar question- how do we navigate through it? Well the answers are simple at the individual level- often the strategy to trade-off between what can be and should be around professional and personal spaces manages to win the day in majority of the cases at that level and chaos can be bottled up tight and good for a long time! But as we start engaging and feeling chaos at larger levels of the society then decisions begin to emerge – which can start at the very basic level- like- “Why the hell am I here?” to “What did I do to deserve this from my society/ government?” It is in the answers to these fundamental questions around the growing level of engagement that one plays around with in the society that one is able to navigate and chart a course of least discomfort and relative harm- both physical and psychological so as to ensure that survival of the society continues. More the number of individuals make sane decisions- easier and quicker it becomes for societies to gain back traction and re-align to paths of agreed and new-found rejuvenation- and if you are wondering how societies do this, well democratic societies have something called as elections and elected representatives and in other societies that are controlled and managed you often see new change of guard to drive home the new doctrine that needs to be administered to the people of that society!

All in all chaos is good as long as you learn from it and apply enough to ensure that the next round of chaos is not a repeat of an earlier one or is not caused by the earlier one!

I will leave you with theses thoughts for now, go ahead have your coffee and think about the times when you faced chaos and overcame it- what was it?- Was it at your level or were you a witness to a nation being reborn!

The story of dissent.

What better time then now, to discuss this! Dissent- the very essence of democratic societies the world over- wherein each individual has the the given right to lawfully express his/her opinion without fear and without any unwarranted angst being directed towards them for having expressed what they have! Well of course if you do not live in a democratic society, this may not make sense at all- because even the thought of dissent in those clamped down absurd places is enough to put you into existential crisis and in grave danger.

To begin with, why does dissent happen- why do people go against an idea- reasons could be many- some right- some not so right. But when the majority (who can influence, direct or dictate) the way of living of a society go ahead with something important (irrespective whether it is a wise decision or not) not inclusion of all constituents of the society is the first step where the seeds for dissent get sown! Irrespective of what the constituents of a society are- from the point of view of their economic status or religious beliefs, non-inclusion never helped anyone and all societies that have played across this line have eventually found that out sooner or later either through easy ways or difficult times!

The next thing that shapes dissent post non-inclusion is the method of communication adopted to drive the idea- the way it is done- seems so innocent at the first impression- but this aspect when not dealt appropriately can look a great idea absolutely stupid and a very dangerous step look divine! Governments/Rulers across the world have known this for long and have used it to their calculated advantage or unforeseen disadvantage with equal measure to stir up societies and nations to go with an idea that the rulers of the day thought was wise- when the society they governed thought otherwise!

The earlier two paragraphs have told you how dissent stems- irrespective what the idea is- now is the real thing- there are and always will be different manifestations of dissent as a direct response to the idea- the more an idea deviates from core foundation values of a human society- liberty and equal opportunity irrespective of economic and religious disposition- the more direct and stronger will be the reaction! It is an these junctions which I term as “Inflection Points” that the fate of nations and societies gets decided.

As long as there is hope form the core pillars of the society (whether they be media, judiciary, thinkers, luminaries from creative fields) these protests and dissents are able to largely confirm to the universal principles of lawful and peaceful dissent and protest. More interestingly, the more apolitical these protests are , the more powerful they seem to get- they simply do not allow the shades of grey- that come in with political affiliations to snatch away the focus from the core areas of concern to some other political point (which is a very likely event and that is what the state would like to see happen- deflection and implosion of the dissent on it’s own!)

Now the question what happens- beyond this- well friends- to be honest- no one wants things to go beyond the holy “Point of Inflection” for every time that a society or a nation has traversed ahead, it has jeopardized the very fabric of the society under consideration and put it under grave threats both intrinsic and external. That’s a place where none of us must venture or even dream of to be in! Societies where youth are a major force to be reckoned with- are fragile and sensitive- they are “baby adults”- who want to be heard to- explained to and listened to- when they have something to contribute for the larger good of the society.

It’s about time that the world awakens and makes way and mends it’s business in the larger interest of the society, nation and world order in general. People in power can and will always cloak a problem to suit their objectives- there is nothing right and wrong in this- this is politics. But it gets dangerous once it starts to rip off the fabric of societies and begins to take away unique identities that represent these societies and nations by their coercive and arrogant approaches. So what do we do?

The answer to this is being honest- being honest on all sides of a square table (I have mentioned a square table for a reason- because circular tables do not yield anything in these set ups and in fact end up making matters worse!). Societies need to make peace with learnings to tread along a path that is just under the point of inflection- but keep asserting lawfully as allowed to make their voice heard- there will be eventuality be respite-sooner or later and history is replete with multiple examples wherein the deadly cocktail of power and ego has finished off political personalities, parties and ideologies right from their very foundation, as they say Time is the greatest master of us all, as along as we allow Time to take it’s time!

A dissent that’s true is like coal burning underground stays alive for ages- until the objective is achieved- only if it assures the larger good of the society. Oppression like a sledge hammer keeps hitting as long as it is given an external political environment- the day pillars of democracy stand up for what is right for the society- the sledge hammer of oppression will cease to operate!

Until next time- keep speaking- wisely, softly and firmly and stay lawful whichever side of an idea you are, no matter what the provocation! Someone said this, “An Idea whose time has arrived cannot be stopped”, likewise ” A society that is awake can never be destroyed- Stay alive, keep speaking and stay lawful”.

Signing off, until next time- stay safe, stay calm and keep your voice- soft and firm!

Applying common-sense to solve complex problems!

Well, I did try to be a bit serious in the last two articles and try genuinely to drive a point on few things around us (especially the ones’ that do not make any sense at all), but then I thought this natural style and approach of speaking my mind and sharing my thoughts is more helpful and sensible and how did I realise that – well that’s what the title of this article and this article is all about- It is a short visit to the our very overlooked and critical competence of being able to apply and use “common sense”

A closer look at finding solutions to ever evolving complex problems is to take a pause and try to see what really is happening and what is allowing things to go the way they are! What is a problem really?- well one way of answering that question is that –“It is an unwelcome manifestation of events around oneself -wherein the experience is not what is anticipated” If you have got this bit then trust me you have solved and done away with almost every challenge that life would have thrown towards you!

The next question in this sequence has to be- Why do problems tend to live along and at times seem to have a mind of their own? Well the fact is – they do piggy back on the fears that we manifest within and secondly they never have a mind of their own (thankfully!), it is rather our fears and inability to comprehend them (the way we should be) what makes them seem like a bigger demon then they really are! A classic case of shadow being bigger and darker then the actual object! So, now you know- kind of- what a problem is and what makes it seem to be what it is- how do we really deal with it? what is the possibly right way ahead- well here is your answer…

Use the simple technique that common-sense provides you with , first have a closer look- decide whether what you are evaluating will kill you (now or later) if left unattended. If you have answered “no” then just move on and don’t waster another precious second of your life whining about whatever caught your attention! But in case you did answer “yes” well then the time has arrived to take a pause and check what’s happening around!

To resolve issues that do need your attention- there will be few, which need immediate action and attention (which will certainly harm you in a good and predictable measure) and then there are those which will harm you enough but will allow you to be there with an altered existence (altered in the sense of how you go about doing whatever you do!- seems good to ignore, does it? don’t be fooled,a majority of problems are situated here and these arise from different corners of society and are camouflaged into a different narrative always to meet their objectives and by the time you realize what has struck you – it is often too late to do anything about it!

For instance, consider this you are driving on a lonely stretch of the highway and you encounter a vehicle problem, what do you do? Most probably depending on the type of vehicle you own, depending on who you are and what your net worth is (perceived net worth) you will act and get a respond which will save you anywhere between few minutes to a couple of hours! Now zoom into another scenario- the current ongoing environmental disaster in Australia- the bush-fires. We can have books written and films made on what led to them and how they could have been prevented and all of that- but for now the problem is that at least a billion animals have been killed, people have been devastated, killed and an entire nation is staring at the orange glow in the skies above and wondering what the next day has to offer! So how do you solve this?- well the fact is- when we have environmental disasters at the scale that this has been unfolding – there is hardly anything that you can do- literally it is about making those difficult choices between saving oneself or the stranger 50 miles down the road in the thicket! This immediately drives society into that dangerous zone of “each one unto themselves” because as a collective effort there is nothing that is being achieved! (For the simple reason what could have been achieved in terms of prevention and caution through public policy and practice was never done!)

It is in spaces like these that common-sense (the presence or absence of it) and its use/abuse will resolve or further complicate the situations!

Well the example of driving the vehicle and solving the issue would be an easier one to comprehend with use of common sense and minimal intelligence at hand, it is in moments when societies struggle with grave and far deeper challenges that use of common sense and wisdom becomes all that more important and decisive to shape the future of the society in question! The Australian bush-fires area great example- with all the technology available and at disposal- there were enough indicators that weer saying something was amiss- a hotter then usual summer, scantier rain then the last time and so much of dried up vegetation – it was nothing less then a disaster in the waiting- and importantly this can happen everywhere in the world- this is nothing specific to Australia- when governments and agencies who have the power and responsibility to manage and mitigate risks and ensure safety of societies turn away and tend to ficus on something else at the cost of one issue- things will eventually go wrong!

Answer this- given the power that you get access – if you lead a government- with so much past data and records at your disposal- do you really want me to believe that such an emergency was not anticipated? I mean really?

A lot of answers to problems big or small- lies hidden in plain sight even as allow the problems to grow big by either intentional or unintentional ignorance! the secret to answering a lot of big problems lies in not allowing them to be bigger then you can manage and ensuring you have a dynamic focus ongoing at matters and situations which demand and command the same- like an hawk eye!

Take your cup of coffee and think about it- loud and clear- slow and within- if every chat and scientific discussion leads to inferences and conclusion which seem sensible and sane- then what betrays people with access to power and resources from turning away form what must be attended to!

I will sign off here, leaving you with your cup and thoughts- until we catch up next time with some more interesting aspects about the times that we live in!

Do not burn the lighthouse down!

Every sailor and every captain who has sailed oceans- especially when the ocean have seemed to have a mind of their own; knows the value of a Lighthouse! This article takes a cue from these real life lighthouses that we are aware about and tries to connect with the lighthouses that are around us and within us! So here we go!

The lighthouse is the custodian of coasts/land which may or may not be welcome the way an ocean vessel needs it, but it certainly is the promise of land and a welcome change for the ocean warriors who seek refuge to gather strength- regroup and venture out again into the ocean to tame it the way the desire to do so!

Each of us, literally each one of us has a lighthouse within us. We normally refer to our lighthouse in many different ways- for some it is their soul, for few others it is their “my feeling” and for some others is is “my heart says” whichever manner you get that connect, believe me that is a true sign that you are connected and hardwired with your internal lighthouse!

Increasingly our world has become more complicated and decisions are rarely simple as they appear to be! A simple incoming call received by you for a product sale could end up a sales career for that tele-caller , you would have had the right and reason for your “no” but the same has it’s unwritten and invisible ramifications all over, this is how our times are intertwined with everyone else. Our lighthouse within, then needs to be more just and more fair in being able to guide us to ensure that we have a shoreline which is always pristine and does not end up a shore dotted with shipwrecks of myopic decisions!

Irrespective how severe the storm is or how inclement the weather is to the sailor, the lighthouse continues to beam a ray of hope and a promise of safety through the storm. Likewise no matter how sever and hopeless the societal strife may seem to be- do not doubt ever the spirit of human ingenuity and the hard wired survival instinct that is so deep within each one of us. Every time societies have been tried to be distorted by unwelcome narratives- something within- Our lighthouse within and our guiding values have ensured that we prevail over the circumstances and emerge as more aware and grounded individuals and societies. The world over- people residing in sever climatic conditions or areas seem to be always more humble and down to earth with a warm smile that radiates and welcomes one and all from their soul. This is what nature teaches us and this is what we can all learn- stay humble and stay grounded.As earth turns and zips across the Sun each day- we are moving ahead with no clock to turn back and correct our wrongs in the context of the bygone time!

My engagements with clients and friends who have discussed their challenges with me as they march ahead to achieve success has always highlighted one aspect- That they all believe in this source within themselves! It is the level of belief that borders on superstition and some unknown force that always keeps an invisible cloak over and around them to ensure they keep walking ahead- sometimes slowed down- sometime paced up- but what is important is that the journey continues! All this becomes possible because they turn inwards and are constantly listening to the voice within and are course correcting in the direction of the beam of their ever strong Lighthouse!

In these turbulent times, buckle up, take a break, hold that cup of coffee and tune into the frequency of the lighthouse within you and course correct the journey of your life! This is the only one that each one of us has, it’s never too late to re-boot and surge ahead!

I will leave you with these thoughts for now and will catch up soon with another thought, do keep those mails coming in with your views and ideas on what you would want me to discuss next here with you! Write in to me at parimal.aluri@simplifylives.com.

Until next time, take care and stay safe! Don’t get killed and don’t kill anyone!

To change the system,be the system!

It always is a challenge as a writer, when you want to weigh carefully and share your thoughts/experiences for a new year- but viewing it from another angle- it is perhaps just another routine flip of a calendar and a change of date! So here we go again with some usual wit and humor – even as we go about destroying and rebuilding our only planet! 7 days into the new year, the first blog of 2020, well here we go!

No matter where you want to land on our planet right now, there is strife and chaos all around- much of this has been the result of the ever present web of greed- greed for power, greed for money, greed for opulence and finally the never ending greed for controlling societies! It is in times like these that it becomes all the more necessary to stand up individually and collectively in what you believe in and stand up for all that will serve the very essence of human foundation- love-empathy- compassion and care-unselfish care for fellow humans- never forget it is the only planet we have and if we decide to abuse it and get reckless with it- we do so at our own peril!

Taking cue from recent global developments- around the world- whether that be the political assassination carried out by the US of an Iranian General, the ongoing protests in India(with support flowing in across the universities and colleges from the world) or the seemingly unimaginable and unmanageable wildfires in Australia (still burning as I write this article) or the ongoing global plight of refugees and climate change (which the UN has been speaking about across multiple forums and with a strong coercive tone to ensure that as group of nations we act with greater care and empathy); All of these have a common thread- a thread that reads- that- All of these are issues are a result of a fast failing system which has faltered it’s way for long and lead astray a society and the global community from the real issues and real challenges which need to be addressed. So the next question- fine we have issues and we have problems so what can we do about them? Can we really do something in the first place? Well there is good news and bad news for these questions- The good news first- we can certainly manage a few things well and ensure they are dusted away for good and the bad news is- that no matter what you do- Mother Earth has a plan for herself and if you are sadly in her way- well you are toast!

A simple and effective manner to manage and deal with man-made and greed related issues and challenges is to practice and imbibe the maxim- “Be the system to change the system” easier said then done- but friends that’s the only way around- especially when you are up against a machinery that has gone wrong like a runaway train and seems to smash into everything that was ever created and existed! But seriously how do you go about this- one may say- to get into a system and then effect a change may take long and by then the problems would have mutated to something new altogether– well yes- that can be partly true- but there is a way around this too-“Extraordinary situations call for Extraordinary solutions”– yes and these steps are the very essence that ensure changes that occur are swift and impacting in equal measure or more then the perceived and experienced chaos that is being played around the society in the context of the time and place!

To change a system, you need to first- infiltrate the system at what I call as key points, next in a timed orchestra turn the levers so that system stops, reverses and works twice as fast in the opposite direction to correct what must be and to service the larger cause of human well being! There would be different ways how this could be achieved- a few of them could be with friends along from within and few could be a total takeover from the outside- but whatever route one chooses, unless there is a compelling and larger visible cause that demonstrates clear differences and benefits to the society – no story of change will ever be complete or effective!

When it comes to the different set of challenges as posed by our planet- read climate change- there are two sets of clear distinction- the question to ask is, “Whether an event that is unfolding would have occurred irrespective of human presence?”, now depending on what the answer to this question is- you really know whether this is an induced challenge or it’s just one of those aspects of being in the wrong place at a wrong time- read earthquakes and Tsunamis. As long as this distinction is clear solutions to address the challenges will be coming and they will arrive well in time to manage and mitigate most of the threats whether they are from human activities impacting nature or whether that the planet running away with a mind of it’s own!

Once you answer this, you have ways and paths to choose the next steps to bring about the change that you cherish as a society- To move ahead -towards something that is more amicable and more calming- because it is only in the organised and settled societies/groups that creativity flourishes.The entire essence of human existence through the ages has been the expression of human intelligence through creative pursuits- choose any subject you wish to – but this is the underlying foundation- the very essence of human existence!

Well, I will leave you with these thoughts for now- “Change is always evolving and always around”- It’s time to sit back and reflect upon the change that you want to bring around within yourself and the society around.Possibly delve into how you are going to go about it!

See you soon with another freshly baked idea!