The essence of Calm: Before, through & after a storm

At a time when I write this, we have a hurricane creating widespread damage along the South East coast of USA, this after having ripped through the nation of Cuba. Somewhere else in the world, there are massive protests and agitations owing to mishaps, political oversights, societal assertion of heir rights, at times with an overwhelming note that says, “enough is enough”! If you thought this was enough for a day on the planet Earth! Well, try to dig a bit deeper and you will find many unfolding events- seemingly isolated at the start- but as you begin to see the emerging pattern all these seemingly isolated incidents soon enough begin to throw up an interconnected and intertwined pattern that weaves the fate and future of the planet and humanity at large! Join me here as we try to decipher a way around the seemingly fluid conditions that arrive to greet us every morning- whether that’s the co-worker who has decided to move out, the business that wants to shut down or grow fast or a nation that wants to re-write it’s perception- the singular answer that humanity seeks is “How do we stay calm- anchored” with all or any of these playing out around us! So here we go!

To begin with, the reality is, storms are ever present and everywhere- at times visible, at times hidden in lain sight, at times expressed and yet at some other times subtly parked away- only to be sensed by those attuned with the contexts around! Whether it’a massive natural calamity that’s heading your way, a society (of which you are a part of) or perhaps a witness to the unfolding’s around, the only real way to grasp and act or decide not to, will all be achieved and remain effective only as long as you have a quick thinking, flexible, fluid and calm mind at work- a mind that knows too well, that no time is ever right for an emotive response- no matter what the situation is- what really makes sense and matters is a rational and collected calm mind which can open up locked challenges with or without a key- but for sure will always ensure that you as an individual will embrace the least damage in whatever you choose to engage with!

The Calm mind before the storm: A calm mind is able to foresee and anticipate the storm as it begins to gather pace- you may want to argue- why can’t it stop it- that’s where a lot of pre-emptive follies take place- when emotive anxiety overtakes rational and wise observations, many a times we need to act in a rush to solve a problem (which we think is arriving), we actually end up creating more grave and more intense problems which are far more real and damaging and pale in comparison to what would have actually come your way! You see, a calm mind is not about inaction or inertial resistance- it’s more about being able to stay collected, observant and pragmatically thinking to estimate two relevant parameters- how much of what is being gauged- is real and what is the probability of that reality coming to life! It’s only when a correct assessment of a perceived problem is done through this lens, that you will be able to hold a steady hand as you ride through choppy waters of a fierce storm! Like every chef knows too well, great food becomes possible only when ingredients are well picked and uncertainties are dealt with through the process of cooking- all of these requiring a focussed and calm mind!

The Calm through the storm: Whether or not you were able to prep your mind, before storm that came your way, you still have a decent amount of hope on your side if you are able to improvise and stay calm as the storm dawns upon you! Whether it is that tough deadline at work, those spreadsheets and presentations taking a toll, or it’s that number crunching that’s driving you insane or that eternal worry about a perspective client- will they or won’t they sign the dotted line! All of these and many other instances can actually arrive with little or no warning, throwing your minds straight into the proverbial boiling water! When this happens, and it will some or the other time- through your long and illustrious life- you will be gladly surprised that at times, doing nothing at all can be a wonderful thing to do! A calm mind has the potency and power to discern with laser sharp focus and no matter how cluttered the subject on hand- or how ambiguous things may seem to be- as longa s you have a calm and focussed mind- you will be able to firstly decide whether you need to act or not and if you need to, you will be able to calibrate the intensity, force and direction of your action- ensuring you are acting in the right way and the right direction to realize the right results! There’s never anything achieved by burning down your house to kill a rat! Right force- to the right space at the right time, is what translates into great results- don’t believe- talk to the paramedic or the fire fighter in your neighbourhood- they are the finest artists who have mastery on this art of staying calm through a crisis- always and each time!

The Calm after the storm: Now that the worst has passed by (for the moment), a clam mind helps assess the damage/benefit more accurately. Getting emotive, hyper reactive will end up damaging all and any benefit or lessons learnt through the journey, a calm mind will help you assess, articulate and formulate with finesse what works and what doesn’t, so that the next time you face a challenge you have a storm- you know what you should certainly not do! Sure enough not all storms are the same, neither in intensity, nor in their form, but the fact is, as long as you have learnt to harness the power of your mind by staying calm, chances are you will ensure that your damages are lessened with every passing storm, making you more prompt, wise and strong with each passing milestone of your life! Ins’t this the simple and foundational story and fact of our lives- no matter who we are, what we do and the different definition of success that we pursue- as long as we have a great ability of refined discernment- you will almost always be able to wriggle out of complex situations with as minimal damage as possible- the essence also lies in the fact, that to begin with try and avoid getting into those odd spaces (the area where the storms take birth!). This works well when it comes to deal with linear storms, that are unidirectional, but when individuals are confronted with multidimensional storms that have the potency to take down and impact one more more aspects of life definitions, that is when the real test of being “calm” is realized and if you ever happen to get into this space and walk out- perhaps even bruised and battered- but not bitter- trust me you will be completely newer version of yourself – as they say version upgrade2.0 or 3.0 whatever you may think fits well!

I leave you here with these thoughts for now, take some time to connect with that calm within and see the difference it makes for you- to choose your battles, check the storms and then ride ahead with more control and more resilience to emerge on the other side better, even though you may be a bit battered!

Ciao for now, will be back soon with another one, until then the key word- “Calm”- realize, practise and cultivate it!

Tricked by your brain.

We live in an era, which is just that our brains need! Whether you struggle to take simple decisions or end up taking complex decisions on an impulse, whether it is signing up for the wrong vocation or whether it is taking the wrong bus- you can simply put the blame on your seemingly innocent brain- seemingly, because, no matter what your IQ is when the brain decides to call the shots, even the best of minds can go haywire! Join me here we take a sneak peek into this space and try to unravel what perhaps is happening here! So here we go!

There are many wise books out there, written by eminent neuro-scientists, psychologists, medical professionals, psychiatrists, behavioural experts; more or less all of them agree to one simple truth that the human brain is one fascinating machine that can throw all your theories and scientific analysis out of the mind and present situations that one has never thought of! Sure enough, through the last 100 years, as technological advancements have made it possible to assess and experiment the working of the brain- it has simultaneously thrown up more new questions than answers that it has found! Perhaps that explains why more and more medical professionals have started to agree that they don’t have answers to all questions and there is a point where even the best of scientific enquiry will fail and falter!

We dwell in times where instant gratification has got hard wired into us. One primary reason for that is essentially how we have kept evolving as collective societies- some places this aspect has played out more than elsewhere. The reason why instant gratification is so empowering is that, your brain’s love for inertia begins to blossom! Whether it is that communication about a remedy for looking fit, a chocolate that you can binge without worrying about sugar, or that air purifier which promises air as clean as whatever, fruits, apartments, job offers too? well our brains are always seeking to optimize the energy balance of our physical bodies- that implies effort / benefit analysis! So wherever and whenever your brain is able to decipher a decent trade off over effort and benefit- you are tricked! So what’s it’s about eating away that chocolate in the dead of the night, or finishing off those finger crisps while no one is watching, it’s all the part of the game! yes, sure enough office delegation techniques- both upward and downward too are a factor of this albeit with the compounding effect of the ever diminishing intelligence! So what’s the deal here? (another gratification question, I must agree!)

Simply put, our brain’s ability to decipher accurately the effort/ benefit space is what makes us as a species so unique and successful, no doubt around that. The problems start when the brain begins to deploy this while being influenced by inaccurate/misleading/ half-baked content that it receives! This is perhaps what throws even our poor brain off-guard- for beyond a point analysis will give into intermittent analytical paralysis and which will eventually grow into chronic indifference and apathy and end up changing your brain- from being an active -active discerning tool into a passive-passive reactive tool! You’ve heard about that phrase right, “Listen to Act, not to react” well, something like that, but sadly with more long lasting and damaging consequences!

An easy way to guard our brain, from reaching such a seemingly painful and unwarranted stage is to begin to filter what comes it’s way- the old adage “The company you keep!” Well, it works , whether you like it or not, be surrounded by people who are inspiring, more driven to specific causes, pursuing thoughts and ideas those are empowering and aimed for the larger good, looking outwards and upwards through sunshine and storm- this one simple trick will bring in a refreshing change and begin to re-wire and correct the lethargy and inertia over time as these more meaningful impressions begin to over-ride the cobwebs of the less serving and closed loop instances of the bygone time! As with people so with everything else, your choice of residence, it’s upkeep, the hobbies that you pursue, the vocation you choose (importantly the people you choose to work alongside or work for or have them work for you!), the books you read, the information that you soak in- what you allow to assimilate and what is that you filter and delete immediately- all this matters- even as much of this happens in an ongoing manner subconsciously, once you try to apply a focussed and directed effort to fine tune with some effort the results can be far more rewarding and enriching!

More often than not, you will also see that when it’s a fatigued brain, your ability to discern on a topic or task at hand, will seem to sway more towards an emotional response rather then being a calibrated rational discernment which is more logic and facts driven! This is another fall out a tired brain as it tries to strive a balance between the effort/ benefit space, the only undoing being that it’s perhaps not in the best of it’s health to do so! Something similar to wanting to lead when you are not ready for it, or trying to hit the asphalt when you are kind of a little tipsy, if not all sloshed! A tired brain, is in a simple mode- “If this doesn’t kill me, whatever action follows I am good!” so whether it is that meaningless shopping, only to come back and find out you have the same dress back home, or eating to realise, you actually have to rush to the washroom- because you lost track on the amount you binged! or many other such instances, which are almost always followed up with statements like “I should have, could have or would have” acted, done things differently!”

The trick to ensure that the brain is all wired right and is able to discern (and not emote) on the effort/benefit space is to keep it nourished and alert- as you may have guessed it a lot of that depends on what you consume and what is consuming you! Whether it is the food, the ambience, the people, the books, the social fabric around you- as long as you are able to soak in that adds value and empowers you to create lasting value- you will find your brain is as alert as that of a baby and is ready to usher in an eternal bounty of creativity/art and scientific enquiry based on the fundamental trait of a healthy brain- Inquisitiveness! A healthy brain, is always seeking, learning, un-learning, re-learning, adapting, adopting and building on what is meaningful and beneficial on the basis of rational and pragmatic discernment rather than an impulsive emotional response! I am no way suggesting that emoting is of secondary importance, rather when your brain is nourished you will find a greater degree of alignment between your rational discernment and your emotional responses and that’s when you hear the statements like “I love this life as I get to follow my passion and be successful through that!”

I leave you with these thoughts here, urging you to nourish your brain, as you must so that when you have a geared up brain, the tricks that it plays, empower and surprise you in a more welcoming and pleasant way, ensuring you follow a path of empowered thinking, creating more empowered actions for an empowered life!

Ciao for now, will be back soon with another topic, until then stay wise, stay nourished and consume what empowers you, not what consumes you!

Taming ambiguity.

If the bygone years and months have brought to us any worthwhile learning, it is about a singular fact- uncertainty and ambiguity are on the rise and whether we have signed up for it or not, they will come vising us, every now and then! Ironically what makes ambiguity, what it seems to be is, how we receive it, why we do so and what we do about it! Join me here as we try to explore how we can remain sane in an ever increasing insane world around us! So here we go!

To begin with ambiguity manifests in all it’s entirety, when it chooses an individual, organization or a society at large! You may often find islands of peace and control when evaluating ambiguity on a social or collective plane, however that fine line (which is so very important) seems to blur or get lost when it comes to dealing with ambiguity at an individual level!

Unlike conventional thought, ambiguity, chaos, uncertainty are not necessarily regressive or negative- need not be- it’s almost always how we react and prevail over them is what makes them seem to what they eventually end up becoming! Case in point, nations across the world face issues with regards to natural disasters, every now and then, at times with cyclical and predictable accuracy of occurrence,even as the intensity varies- floods, hurricanes, land slides, forest fires, ponder about the region 200 kms around you and I am sure, there is an element of uncertainty that lingers out there from nature’s perspective- but rarely does any of that scare or bother us- because through the evolution and development of the collective society, ways and means have been thought through to deal and engage with these events and instances- at times the methodology is evasive and that of avoidance and at times it is about deploying modern technology and pushing for a calibrated co-existence with its usual trade-offs!

When ambiguity visits us at an individual level, the stakes are often much higher for they leave us fortified or scarred for life or at least for a longer duration of our seemingly shorter life! The reason why this happens is that, in the rush of the life that we have embraced and lead, we often get that moment of isolation (the fabled “me” time) which is the foundation needed for effectively engaging and dealing with ambiguity! In the endless hurry of wanting to deal and deliver with everything that comes our way- we end up using the same yard-stick for every unique event that comes our way! To begin with rarely do we even bother to think, if we even need to respond to what is knocking at our door! You see, for making that choice to act/react or ignore one needs enough space and time (proportional) to what the ambiguity seems like to begin with! Act in a hurry, chances are you will end up complicating further a seemingly simple scout knot, decide not to act and chances are you may allow a simple problem amplify with time to assume a monster like proportion, causing you to lead a war which could have been completely avoidable! So what’s the way around this?

The foremost step, for effectively dealing with ambiguity/chaos is to take a step back and hover above and over what seems to be arriving at you! A bird’s eye-view- should Is ay an Eagle’s Eye-view is what is needed when dealing with pressing uncertain issues cropping up and racing at you! Whether it’s about you, an organization that you lead or a society that you are a guardian for- as long as you are able to rise and hover above what seems to be coming your way- chances are you will be able to take decisive steps and actions to quell and tame the seemingly ambiguous situation and make it more meaningful and actionable and ensure that a repeat of those same instances are avoided going further! Once this has been done, the next steps all boil down to the contextual realities and the least damaging option that one has at hand!

A lot unwarranted sweat and blood gets lost while dealing with ambiguity also because we tend to act/ react on an emotional note rather then applying the power of a discerning mind! There’s nothing right or wrong about this- because the story of human lives and societies has always been about the follies and failures of emotional overreach when what was required was a simple rational approach based on “I think” rather then “I feel”!

I leave you with these thoughts for now, giving you that intentional moment to reflect and plan on what you think your next approach will be like to engage and deal with ambiguity that either has already on your hand or perhaps just around the corner! Last but not the least, no ambiguity or chaos is bad as long as you learn to tame it! It’s not about what comes your way, it’s always how you deal with what’s coming you way! The human brain has infinite tricks tucked within to make monsters appear when there are none and also provide a false sense of security even as the ground beneath is sinking! About that- some other time! Until then, stay safe, stay sane and yes, “Practise the Pause” before you hit the button on your device to embrace or ignore what’s staring at you!

Ciao for now! Will be back soon with another piece- Some facet about The Human Brain seems an interesting aspect to write next about!

Lost in Transit!

2022 has been what it seems to be! Exhilarating, Stagnant, Challenging, Uncertain, Ambiguous and certainly much more then all of this, perhaps even something else to many of us! As I keep saying, Truth may be absolute, but realities of life are always contextual! Join me here (after a long hiatus!) to decipher this space were individuals and organizations alike seem to loose their way even as they dwell on the perception of being in control and are racing full speed ahead to reach a place- the only challenge being, the vectors to the direction are all over the place! What unfolds from these journeys, needless to say is a space of further dis-ease and chaos which only continues to fuel people ,societies and nations into the never ending downward spiral of misplaced priorities and lost battles (which are nothing more but grave miscalculations based on perceptions, more then anything else!) So here we go!

Sure enough the last few years, through the global slow down owing to the pandemic, upheavals in political priorities and social realignments the world over, pockets of fluidity have crept up all over the world with varying intensities making those areas that much sensitive or should I say Insensitive to what is really that matters and what is being perceived as important! This in turn has ended up creating the apt context wherein it is much more easier for individuals and societies as a whole to loose their way and end up arriving at a point in the future which they had never planned to be or opted-in for! This is the real essence of getting “Lost in Transit” and this is (whether you agree or think differently) what resides beneath every failed or failing decision that we act upon either as individuals or collectively as societies in general. At a societal level, at times inaction is gravely detrimental and more unforgiving then action with errors! But why do we land up this way, what really is happening here and what is that we can do about it, is there anything really that can be done?

No one, absolutely no one (irrespective of access to opulence) would choose a complex way of life where every moment seems to be a test of survival! Each one of us, all of us each day, begin with a healthy spoonful of hope and direction but by the time the day has gone by, we at times find the day was controlling and directing us more, even as we then thought we are the ones’ who were in control! Let me break this down for you! Let’s take this scenario which is so familiar and simple, you decide to be on time, reach the office, deliver that assignment (which you have already re-read a dozen times) and win that appreciation and put a check on your to-do-list for the day! Now the chances are either it plays out exactly as you scripted it should in your eager and anxious mind (even as you have a ton of confidence) or the chances are that among all the other elements that are passive to this event- the people, the place and the technology- either one or few or all of them could fail and sabotage the whole thing! It is not about your intention or effort going amiss, it is about the readiness of the context around to embrace and implement what you script!

If this could cause so much of angst for a simple office presentation for an individual, imagine the chaos and ambiguity that multiple events and varying scenarios can beget collectively for societies and nations and it is these compounding set of endless individual events that shape the large macrocosm of a society which eventually end up short serving the wider collective- which could be an establishment providing livelihood to a few thousand, a society of a few million or even a nation of a billion people! This lack of synergy between the ability to provide/ act and assimilation of it within the relevant spaces of a society is what derails and throws off track the whole direction and soon enough misplaced priorities begin to over ride and whatever little sanity is remaining for a meaningful voice shouting out right directions is silenced in the ever increasing noise and chaos of ambiguity all around! So how do we go abut this?

Answers to complex issues are never easy, and when it comes to ensuring that what is relevant overrides all that isn’t , the resistance to change and progress (which is inbuilt within individuals and societies) does all that it can to derail and lead astray even the most noblest of intentions! Perhaps one way of looking at this is, simply devise a plan or strategy to act to the contexts around and build answers to what the wider challenge seems to be (whether or not that is relevant and then seed in the real solution within it and deploy!) A kind of Trojan approach where the recipients get to witness the arriving solution as what they want/desire it to be and as they are drowned in the excitement that they have been victorious, allow the real intent to play it’s part and complete what it is meant to- even before the excitement of victory is settled, the job would be done and the society or the collective cohort would have been left with no choice but to align as they only had welcomed what came their way with all pomp and gaiety! Seems unfair, but in a world that is ready to tear down every shred of fairness, nothing gets more equal then this approach! Sure enough, this is what is used all the time by governments and businesses all the time, offering lip service of discounts, amnesties, rebates and then hiking taxation so what you got is eventually taken away!

On a more smaller scale- the space of personal and individual interactions, it becomes far more easier to avoid being lost in transit- for you have control to stay or move away as soon as you notice things are not aligned to what they should be and begin to assume forms for which you never signed in! To gauge this though, moment to moment awareness and alertness is absolutely required. Often people are too drowned into an emotional twilight zone where the only hue is different and varying shades of ambiguity and grey! Constant ignorance and disregard to what doesn’t fit so well by filtering everything through the lens of emotions, is more often then not what leads to individuals being missing the real direction, journey and eventually the destination and end up arriving at places and with people that they never signed up for! Whether its is about your personal space or the work area- this inability to think and discern on a rational and pragmatic scale often leads people short changing their approach and eventually the story of their lives often begins with, “I could have, should have…but!”

Sure enough, there is no standard operating life-manual for each one of us is wired differently inside out, but guess that’s what makes the world a wonderful place to be in, it’s only when these amazing wonderful and intelligent beings wire with each other in less meaningful and dumber ways that regression overtakes progress and we end up creating a future that no one signed up for! This is the real story of being Lost in Transit! To avoid, stay authentic and know when to move away from what doesn’t seem to be what it is meant to be or says it is!

I leave you with these thoughts to ponder over, as you arrive at your much earned weekend! Ciao for now and will be back soon with another piece and yes, let’s stay wired in the right earnest to empower and uplift all those whom we can as much as we can and as many times as we can!

Bye!

Making sense through shifting narratives.

What a year it has been! A lot of us would be glad that the year is drawing to a close, albeit even as each one of us pauses for a few moments to check our losses and come to terms with the collateral damage that we have all got into; even as we do so, we are staring with confidence and doubt, anxiety and hope into the new year that seems to be a few days ahead, yet seems to be so far away! Join me here for a short trip, to know, why I went silent for over a month, what is it with the shifting narratives and finally, what is that you and I can do, to stay sane, even as we race full speed ahead another seemingly fogged out welcome to yet another new year! So let’s roll…

If 2020 was about all the crying, wailing and screaming about a new virus- accidental or intentional, 2021 was all about allowing “Vulturism” to take centre stage! 2021 was dotted with ample instances of shifting narratives- be it the pandemic itself, the conflicting stories about the vaccines, their efficacy, politics, business corrections and what not! Every few weeks, our online screens have been successful in diverting our attention from one “so called matter of life and death” to another, every few weeks, you and I were told, “If we didn’t get it right and if we missed what was been told, we won’t live to see the end of the year” Sadly for these folks, you and I are still here and the bad news around this is, so are they and their factories that churn out these dumb shifting narratives! So you may, by now want to understand, what is that you and I can do about it and is there anything that we can really implement- even at a personal level to regain our lost sanity and basic attributes of humanity- well yes, we can do a lot, bit by bit, even as the mad circus on town gets played over and over again even through 2022, simply by choosing not to walk into that lane leading to the circus! So how do we do it? Well here we go!

To begin with, create your personal sovereign space- both physical and intellectual- this is like drawing lines which are non-negotiable and defined to ensure your physical and mental well-being is never compromised.To do this effectively, you need to come up with clear plans about knowing who your sources are and how credible they are- whether they ask you to take the next jab, the next pill or even about moving your house or exploring a new job, only once you have secured the first line of Influence that can alter or modify your decisions sufficiently and weighed them practically for their accuracy and neutrality- will you be able to have access to quality knowledge/ information and it is only when you have authentic and neutral information that you will always be able to come up with empowering decisions! May seem difficult to do, sure it is, good things and great events are never easy, only disasters and accidents happen fast and quick!

Once you begin to treat yourself like a sovereign nation and take the onus of a protecting your well being, trust me you will see a lot of unwanted noise getting filtered away in no time! The next thing is about knowing what you want to do with the information that you have! The world is constantly shifting- that is one side of the story, the other more not so visible side of the story is- what part and how much of meaningful change is brought to your notice or is available for your to decipher and what is really important and hidden away (either intentionally or otherwise!). This is another important aspect that adds fuel to the fire of shifting narratives! You go to bed, happy about your investment portfolio only to wake up the next day morning to realise you have lost 30% of value simply because some shit hit the roof in some Asian market- which you probably have never even heard about! Have your ever noticed, no matter how high or low markets hit- the companies listed always are safer then the retail investors who almost always have their wealth eroded after a finite time, in one way or the other! Sure, people do make gains, make profits and also earn millions- but, for that to manifest there’s always more then meets the eye playing out right in your blind spot! It is imperative that one needs to have or rather develop a great skill to sieve through meaningful context to decipher what’s missing rather then what’s available- for the missing links almost always set the tome for the next unexpected hair-pin bend on the road to your success!

Know the distraction, demonstrate acceptance to deviate and deflect! You see, whether it is the politicians, the screens that keep blaring information/ content at you, all of them are doing so with an intent and purpose and as long as you keep visibly defying them by word or action, they will just keep coming at you with all the power that they have or have grabbed and keep hammering away what they want you to accept/agree (at least until they are sure you have done so!) So, if you want to stop that unending onslaught, go back to your childhood days and deploy that ace trick- say yes and do nothing and keep repeating that in a loop, and that’s something for which there’s no answer!

As the world moves ahead to change calendar years, the upcoming years are going to be anything but ordinary or reassuring! What 2020 has shown is that nations will go to any extent to alter the course of human progress and that they will take any risk to alter the global power equations! No one will accept, neither will anyone be ever able to conclusively decipher whether the whole act of the setting off the pandemic was accidental or intentional- but one thing that has certainly emerged from this episode is that, nations can get away with mass murder- if they plan and deploy those strategies with finesse and a soft art of fluid diplomacy which swings between extremes of softness and borders on the edge of war mongering! No, this is not about fear mongering or about selling a possible doomsday story, but it is about encouraging you to think on the pivot of your intelligence and common-sense to decipher what;s hidden in your plain sight on an ongoing basis- for that alone is the only hope and way to stay clear of shifting narratives which show no signs of abetting in then near future as humanity keeps it’s onward march in pursuits of progress (or is it something else disguised within the definition of the word progress- think! you will know!)

I leave you with these thoughts for now, will be back with another one soon and yes a promise to keep, you will see more frequent and more varied topics coming up as we journey through 2022!

Stay safe, stay wise and decipher what’s hidden in plain sight!

PS: Beginning 2022, one-on-one coaching/counseling calls will be available through zoom! For more details please feel free to write to me at parimal.aluri@simplifylives.com

A mutating virus, a changing climate and stuck-on habits!

It has been a long hiatus since the last article, and has been for a good reason! No, nothing to worry, have been spared from the virus (as yet!), neither have I been been caught in the changing lines of raging forest fires or drowning streets or vanishing ocean coasts, what I was busy with was actually a deep observation and note taking of what’s unfolding on a macro scale all around us, whether its unfolding in the USA, some Latin American nation or some location within Asia, there are common threads that bind us in moments of triumph and despair and this short piece is all about navigating through these areas and try to realize the coded meaning that resides therein! So here we go!

It now seems like another life to even think and remember what normal social behaviour was and how it was to be “human” and to engage with fellow humans! Sure enough the virus did what it was meant to do (and continues to do so even as of now), sure enough there have been meaningless loss of lives all over the world and even more damaging has been the economic mayhem that has ensued- lost livelihoods, altered futures and what not, but within all of this chaos and ambiguity resides a singular fact and that is “We alone allow to be impacted by what comes our way, not because of what comes our way, but because of how we choose to respond or react to what is coming our way”!

The virus is a classic case, no one is taking away the potency and threat that it brought along with it, but what is equally important is the regard or should I say dis-regard that we as a society chose to offer it, which went on to empower the virus and allow it do what it did and continues to do! Stay on with this thought as I open the next unfolding challenge that plagues us on a routine basis- Climate Change!

I have written earlier on as well, to blame the Earth or to blame a changing climate is perhaps the dumbest thing to do! What we need to do and accept is that, we make choices which are in direct conflict with what nature wants to play out and if you build your home on a rail track, sooner or later you are going to be run over- you build it over a hundred times, you will be hit a hundred times! Like with the Virus, the problem with climate or rather the changing space around climate has more to do with what we have accepted and decided to pursue- call it development, greed or pursuit of the unknown- based on what suits the local narrative – stories are spun and sold day in and day out- the Earth really doesn’t care, when the next storm comes calling or the Earth begins to move and give away- it will not make a difference based on which political party is in rule over a given region- it will come down heavily as it desires to and will be indifferent on what side of the “argument on climate change” you decide to be on- as long as you stay in company of societies that violate basic and fundamental respect of nature- you too will be hit- more or less depending on how close or far away form the epicentre you happen to be!

Whether it is the story of virus or climate change, the common thread here is more to with the choices that we exercise and how they go on to shape our today and the oncoming tomorrow! The virus can and could have been halted by a simple act of “distance”, the issues of climate change could have been simply allowed to play out by providing nature the space that it needs and halting the senseless encroachment into nature especially in pockets where it has held it’s sway through eons.

Easier said, then done right, well sure that’s what it seems like, but that is the fact. The most complex problems almost always have simple and fundamental solutions; it is the unfounded belief and bias that we have developed as societies to come up with complex solutions to big issues, that leads us to create more complexity, rather then resolving the existing ones’ . This is perhaps the greatest paradox of the times that we live in! So you may now ask, so what next!

Well, real trick and the perhaps the only way is to shun away with the habits and behaviours that have “stuck-on” to us as individuals and as societies. It is these prejudiced dispositions which end up leading us to our own accelerated demise, as individuals, as failing thoughts or as failing societies and faltering governments’! Unless we resolve to bring about a fundamental and lasting change in what we seek, how we re-define success and failures, as Individuals and collectively as societies we will end up experiencing hits every now and then, each time our pursuits cross the delicate line between need and greed!

It is easy to blame a raging fire, a torrential downpour, those endless nervous landslides and earthquakes on climate change, flip channels and thank the heavens that your family and you are safe, but unless you do not adopt a behavioural change in consumption and way of living, you will continue to contribute to the effects of climate change and will only end up being a mute spectator to the ever increasing events. So what is that you can change as an Individual or a Society?

Well as an Individual, small choices, could be expensive, may not be can bring in a lot of change! Simple acts of prolonging the life of your clothes in the wardrobe, limiting your travel to meaningful pursuits, calibrating your consumption to what is necessary rather than what all that you can have an access to (simply because of who you are) can go a long way to make things a shade easier. Sure enough no one is asking you not to enjoy or live your life to the fullest, the only modification is to make that quest a bit more responsible and aligned to the right side of the line which nature wants you to abide by!

As societies, collective choices done with greater intent, focus and purpose can have a rapid and amplifying impact to bring about visible changes in a few years, doesn’t’ matter which is the next pandemic that wants to pay you a visit, or which weather condition is about to throw up a surprise at you, as long as you have built a robust social framework of value adhered existence for the holistic wealth of all the constituents and you have ensured you are well clear off the nature’s highways’ of change (the fire valleys and flood plains) you will be spared and more importantly the progress that you go on to make will be more sustained and more robust- simply because you will not have to walk into the trap of walking ten paces ahead every year, just to be pushed back by 100 paces every decade!

This fundamental acceptance to believe in meaningful and sustainable change at an Individual and societal level is the key and foundation on which resilience can be built to overcome the next challenges that may come our way either by the intriguing organism or by the splendid display of nature in all it’s glory!

I leave you here with these thoughts for you to reflect and decide on what singular change you would like to embrace to contribute and make the world around you and for you a shade better then what it was yesterday! Remember, it doesn’t have to be complex could be as simple as choosing your next cup of coffee with a little more responsibility!

Ciao for now, will be back soon with another one, until then stay safe, stay wise and stay connected!

Your fail-proof plan to a fragile future.

The ongoing pandemic has united the world like never before- united in similarities and through sharp contrasts; it’s a pity that it took so many lives and a pandemic to realise what we have collectively as a society have, nevertheless this is the time to sharpen and ensure that you empower yourself through a plan- a plan which is as fail proof as the contexts that it is going to meet head on and as fail proof as it can be in the face of the next challenge that comes its way! Join me here, as we take a walk around this space and try to make sense of what it is to be really fail proof- and why that really matters! So here we go!

There have been innumerable best sellers, articles and scientific papers elucidating the value and importance of being able to plan. Whether its a plan needed for a nation, a society, an organization or simply a plan for self-improvement, we need them and our choice of acceptance and walking through one, eventually decides how great or how dumb that plan was! You see, like an aeroplane pilot, once you cross the take off threshold velocity, you have no choice but to stay committed to the decision and you alone are the one who has the ability to keep choosing more meaningful choices as they keep coming up every few seconds to ensure that you stay in flight and even if you face a problem, you are able to deal with them , by deploying the most potent solutions and choices that you can make in that context of time!

Sans the unwanted and unwarranted jargons and overly complicated suggested methods that tend to crowd the fashionable space of solutions for problems; in reality, the choices that we need to make as individuals can very often be very simple and it is their simplicity that makes them so empowering and meaningful! Whether the choices are about simple mundane things related to what we consume or if those are related to one-off important decisions pertaining to life- choices, as long as they are kept simple, rational & aligned they will almost always be effective and potent and good enough to keep you on your flight path to arrive at the destination of your choice.

The real trick to make these simple and effective choices fail proof and future proof is by allowing them to be intrinsic and aligned to who you are and what you are, rather then what you can do and what you cannot do! The reason why choices turn out to be bad in the long run and often tend to create more challenges then solutions, is not because you would have intentionally raced ahead to make a bad choice, but it has more to do with the dependability of the choices that you make on factors that are beyond your control and external. The more your choices are dependent on external factors, greater are the chances that at some or the other time in the future they will fail or falter, sooner or later they will! irrespective of how good that choice would have been in the context of time when it was made!

Once you have made this fundamental change to your planning approach by making your plans more intrinsic to you, the next equally important aspect is about putting your plan to test and see if stands true to the contextual settings in which it is supposed to operate. Many great ideas have failed even before they could be carefully considered simply because they cam in at the wrong contextual setting.

You may want to argue that how can we have plans those are intrinsic, contextually mapped and aligned, well the answer to that is, if you fail to do this and embark on following the popular methods and approaches, when the odd reset hit, you will also have to take the hit and whether you are responsible for that or not, will really not matter, because you made a choice to be on a wrong ride even after knowing the odds! If you are wondering about a good example for this, well if you are employed, you know what I am talking about here- remember the last time you did not get the raise that you wanted, even after all you did was right and simply because the management said, the company was not doing well, so you could not be given more! Or worse still, even when you did everything right, one fine day the business is sold off and with that your future! Even when it is about business and entrepreneurial pursuits, as long as you stay dependent on that vendor, supplier, market, you will one fine day, sooner or later stall and falter, irrespective of how right or wrong you have been! This is simply because the choices and the whole approach to your planning in all these scenarios is dependent on others, external attributes with absolutely no space for you to leverage on your strength that you may have at an intrinsic level!

The only and really sustainable way to have or devise a fail proof plan for your life, is by leveraging that around what you as an individual can do- irrespective of the external factors and the next important step is to ensure that you get placed in a context or environment where the surroundings begin to favour you or at best remain neutral to what you propose to achieve so that you have minimum resistance and you can accelerate at a speed that you are comfortable with none of the unwanted obstacles and road blocks that people normally face as they begin their business pursuits. Sure enough, business and wealth creation doesn’t happen in isolation or in vacuum, but there is no need to always climb a mountain, you always have a choice to navigate around it, if not totally avoid it!

A fail-proof plan has to essentially be your story, your unique approach to a solutions or a challenge which can be driven only by you and be controlled as much as possible by you! Something like being a chef, you knows how to craft that perfect signature recipe, the only requirement being- being available and in an environment where one is allowed to exercise that intrinsic skill! As long as you use your skill to be your pivot, no matter how choppy the future gets, you will still stand a good chance to ride the storm and reach a harbour safe enough to re-boot your life, but if you embark on a voyage, strapped in all kind of popular belief’s and biases, if a storm hits and the ship sinks, you will go down with it as well, simply because you are too invested in the ship rather then yourself!

I have intentionally avoided a typical management approach to this pieces, because when we speak about simplicity, the essence of driving that point resides in using as simple and as few as words as possible to install that faith and confidence in you that, life doesn’t have to be complex or complicated and yes, simplified living and simplicity is a choice which you can make and rest assured, even if you don’t hit the jackpot every now and them, you will never keep running in circles, trying to achieve the same elusive goals year on year!

I leave you with these thoughts for now, grab your coffee and think around, what is that singular intrinsic pivot upon which you can lead, create and sustain all that you want to plan and manifest in the times ahead and just to be sure, how insular it can be from what can get thrown at it- by the contexts that you move around in!

Ciao for now, will be back soon with another one, until then stay safe, stay wise and stay connected within!

Fucked up nations and a screwed up world.

If you have woken up each day to tune into the news and discover that not much has changed (which empowers you or your life) and if you have gone to that much cherished office desk of yours’ whether based out of your home or at your real office and always thought about the meaningless banter that you end up through the enslaved long hours (for tasks which you too know could have been done in a few hours, sans the melodrama of the “socially accepted way of working” , that insatiable addiction to meetings, gossip and throwing up meaningless words and ideas which go on to serve very little at the end of the day, leaving you more sapped and disempowered rather then uplifting you; well this is all in a day’s work scenario for the millions of us and the best part is, we don’t even relate this to the wider menace of, how misplaced ideations, policies at national level ends up screwing up the communities within the nation and furthermore rubs off all that it should not to the global space! Join me here as we try to decipher this space and perhaps think around why and what it is, that has led us- as humanity to a point where we are happy to accept what comes our way even without an intelligent or focussed discussion or deliberation. So here we go!

The world seems to be a kind of aggregation of dumb places and over countless cups of tea and coffee ! The world over, every person has a point of view on what the people managing the affairs of their nation should be doing, but the real problem are not the leaders or their ability to manage- the real problem that the nations and the world in general has reached a dismal bend in terms of what could have been better, has more to do with the more innocent and inconspicuous looking elements within the society- which by design or accident end up creating a social conformation of mediocre standards and when societies thrive and propagate on this foundation, needless to say, nations are messed up and the world in general!

Someone rightly said, it is not about decisions, being taken or not- it is about the quality of decisions being taken or not that are the real game changers! The world needs stoic silence as much as it needs vibrance and noise! The real trick is about knowing when to pump up the noise and when to embrace quiet and unless this essence is understood and held on to by the majority, the few that run or ruin the nations and the world will continue to thrive and progress at the expense of directed ambiguity and chaos unleashed towards the majority!

We live in times where societies are more and more closing and folding unto themselves for one or the other reason and all the righteous space of enquiry, deliberation and progressive ideation is being short changed to drive home the narratives of a a few- increasingly our societies are turning into reality show labs playing out to the scripts directed by the few who can do so! As original thinking and genuine enquiry is lost in the race to serve fast food solutions to an ever restless society, we are managing the chaos of today, with no idea on how to engage and deal with the future that is just around the corner! The more humanity keeps digging into its’ heels and obeying the Law of Inertia- it will do nothing else but get further complicated and paralysed to create any meaningful social frameworks that empower individuals to progress and influence! By now, you may want to ask, why this banter? How does this even start? Well read on!

Like with everything good or bad, societal deterioration and the ensuing mess emerging from it always starts small; how small? Well at the very foundational levels in a society- at the level of families- irrespective of whatever the serious and challenging situations that a family may have- whether being affluent or not, more often then not it is within these microscopic spaces on a societal context that we end up promoting disempowerment, myopic outlooks and narrowed down narratives- whether it is about feeding in ways of life or the holy grail of the supposed to be modern education systems that are rampant around us- what each family more often then not ends up doing is destroying the core value of human curiosity and power to enquire and once this is done and the drill to accept what is being preached is set in then we end up having generations and generations that thrive on accumulated information mistaken as knowledge and needless to say- every now and then as that pile of informative garbage fails us- societies across the world are left to fend for themselves as they can- because that is when all the so called experts begin to fail and each one has a point of view which is contradictory and undeserving to find a real meaningful solution to a problem at hand- sounds familiar- well the present pandemic right? yes- well thats how it has been even before the pandemic and will always be!

Disempowerment at an individual level when multiplied and amplified many times over, is what sets back societies and when that is done at a societal level, you end up having a messed up nation! It is from these confines of restricted and challenged spaces that the world leadership emerges and when they too are a byproduct of such beginnings, needless to say hardly anything substantial for the greater good is ever realized! The problems that we see around us and leave us wondering why they don’t get ever solved is not the real issue;the real issue is about trying to solve a problem a hundred times in an exactly same way, which never worked in the first place!

The whole journey of messing up societies and nations begins with placing embarrassing, stupid and dumb goals and targets for the lives of young kids and as they begin to grow and explore the world around, all the innate curiosity and originality is rapidly destroyed and what we end up creating instead is a generation of think alike, feel alike and sink alike people! Everything from parenting to schooling to the way jobs are offered, business is conducted speaks volumes about the intrinsic orientation of the societal fabric and the individual constituents within. Unless this space is altered, you will witness, politicians and policy makers playing out the same narrative year after year, without really achieving anything worthwhile and even when something is achieved, it looses its essence and meaning for the time has already flown by! Unless people stop the intentional deliberate attempt to label human life based on “job”, “relation”, “perception”, or “skewed success definitions”, humanity is all but a hopeless case, racing ahead on the edge of a circle to come back to bygone milestones and fated to repeat mistakes of the past!

Perhaps the only way to untangle, stall or mitigate this seemingly unsolvable mess of humanity, is by going back to the basics and learn not to mend what is not broken- that is what it is all about! No complicated solutions, complex strategies, it is just about being rational, discerning and giving common-sense and human ingenuity and curiosity space and time to breather, thrive and execute. The moment this is done ground up, you will witness transformation unfolding which increasingly comes up solutions and innovation to serve the greater good of humanity. Sure enough, not everything can be charity and there has to be a price to be paid for research and scalability of solutions, but that can’t be an excuse to make the spirit of being human redundant! Senseless automation is a classic example where humans ended up being redundant! technology and automation sure enough are great enablers and game changers, but unless that every moving dynamic balance between people and process is not made, things will end up, with one trying to annihilate the other! Unless people realise this and pledge to build social framework that serve human rather then the other way around, the ever faltering and failing world around us will go on the way it does, banking on the pivot of generous dumbness and sparing intelligence!

Take the step today and make a pledge to yourself to try and connect with the intrinsic and innate human quality that you have within, sans what society says, what your business card says and so on and so forth, once people begin to practise this simple act of self-empowerment and mindful approach to their pwn life and begin to believe that their own lives are much beyond the business cards and the relationships that they build and destroy on an ongoing basis! It is only when empowered and anchored individuals begin to direct and associate at community and societal levels that change will be experienced as it should be and it is then that un-serving and nonsensical rhetoric of the so called leaders and policy makers will begin to get calibrated- for they too would have evolved from the same space of empowered thinking and staying curious for the greater good!

No matter who says what, unless humans are empowered and liberated in their approach to think and stay curious, we are destined to deal with the garbage that gets played out on the screens all day long and we end up trying to define ourselves to what best suits us- from what gets thrown at us! The saddest part of our times is about many people living and dying away not ever realizing what they were capable of and perhaps could have done amazingly well- all because of the overbearing rhetoric of fucked up nations and a screwed up world!

Ciao for now, will be back with anther one, until then stay safe, stay wise and unshackle yourself to embrace empowerment and nourish your curiosity- that is where the magic happens and that is where you find yourself and your purpose; rest all is as simple as a rocket engine!

The problem with “equality”.

Before you even want to jump the gun and try to start racing ahead with suppositions, presumptions and prejudiced thoughts about what this piece is likely to be about, I would simply say that none of that will help or is even required, because the fact of our times is that, no matter how much “equality” is showered from the roof tops and through the societal touch points, we endure only one thing at the end of it all- an equally unequal world in whatever way you choose to study and decipher it! Join me here as we try to unravel why equality is perhaps not what it seems or should be and why the obsessive fallacy of promoting “equality” has led humanity to a point where we are now! So here we go!

You don’t need to study advanced rocket science to learn or observe that the story of humanity is all about societies dotted with individuals and these individuals who go on to make the framework and all working, thriving, not so thriving elements of the social construct are never equal- no matter what measure or metric you choose to compare! You may have two individuals doing the same thing and getting rewarded in exactly the same manner for the work they do- whether in cash or kind- but that in no way is any real authentic or sensible reflection to use the term of “equality”! Simply because individuals, each one us are different and as unique as the last extinct plant or animal! We may have similarities in terms of feeling, thinking and approach on a few fundamental spaces that govern our survival, universally, but that is where the common ground ends and beyond that it is almost always about who we are as an individual and all the blown up garbage around “equality” is nothing more but a glorified publicised rant to drive some or other unequal agenda!

We all studied the grand equality sign (=) as students of elementary maths and we all know and agree that only when the variables or numbers across that sign are the same is when this sign or equality carries any meaning! Likewise when it is about our lives, two sides of the equality sign that are vital are the ones’ that signify who we are as an intrinsic construct and the what are the contextual settings that go on to influence us, as we evolve and go on to engage with the society and the world around us! Needless to say, even the same contextual settings will influence differently individuals as they have different intrinsic construct and, yes, even if you wanted to argue about identical twins and all that space, well, do tell me how much percentage do these gifted identical twins make up of the global human population! So this much for now, as far as the foundation of the concept of equality goes- as humans each one of us are unique, in one way or the other and no matter who says what- equality doesn’t travel beyond the definition about us as a species! So, if this is true, why the global hue and cry about this concept?

Well, the human mind has this habit of wanting to be incentivised and urge to feel good first before thinking good or thinking right- so when you have these utopian concepts thrown at it- it acts like an ice cream given on a hot summers day and soon enough all rational guards of the thinking mind are lowered and the emoting mind takes over- not realizing what it ends up signing up for! This is why most of the time everything related to equality, more or less ends up in a grand public spectacle of office access, conferences, workshops or high tea conversations and that’s where they get buried as well! The real and perhaps the only meaningful attribution to equality only comes from ability have a definite metric which is independent of the person performing a given operation! You see, all apples are sure sweet and the way they ought to be, but they are not equal! They may be similar, but similar never means equal! So what’s the point you may ask? What is this raking up the hay all about…

Well, it is all about grounding your intelligence, wisdom and common-sense to one fundamental aspect of life that, it is our uniqueness which brings in vibrance and variety to the world that we have created and if at all there has to be any meaningful measure or discussion around equality- it has to be not only about equality of access or employment or gender neutrality or any of these (you may still want to root for them), but rather it has to be about equality in terms of human expression based on skills and competence whether that be a field of arts or science or any of their applied fields! Blue blood innovation doesn’t happen in incubation labs and confined corridors and sealed windows, it happens where liberated minds are able to breather, and express freely whether that space is a pent house or a garage and that is the whole essence of human progress and development! The ability to provide a fair and just platform for human expression irrespective of who they are and from where they are, is what is the real essence of equality- It has to be only about equality of expression and the ability to share and improvise on those fleeting expressions and breakthroughs which alone can go on to add meaningful and enriching experiences to the lives of people all around!

If you understand this core aspect and are able to further the same, your immediate community, society, nation and the world will be forever much indebted to you- simply because you allowed the human spirit to remain equal in the real essence of it, by allowing it to flower and flourish on the pivot of human expression rather then any other modern day banter- which is nothing else but an agenda driven narrative-almost always!

I leave you with these thoughts here, urging you to take a pause and reflect; what is the equality narrative that you ever got sold to and what is the real essence of equality mean to you! Can there ever be anything greater and further then equality of human expression? Think around it!

Ciao for now, will be back soon with another one, until then stay wise, stay safe and yes, don’t get sold into all the crap that comes your way, some is fine!

Colors through the Prism.

We live in times, where the war of narratives simply refuses to die down and no sooner that one fire of warring narratives is doused we have some other narrative rising up some where else, given the connected global collective future that we all share as humanity, what more can be more important then to take a pause and try to understand how did and why did we arrive where we have today, and why have narratives become so driven, compelling and sacrosanct, that without a daily does of “breaking news” we simply refuse to recognize that a new day has arrived and there can be a day without a “breaking news”! Join me here as we explore this space and try to make sense of the gross nonsense floating around us and take a moment to think what is that we can do to stay on the right side- or should I say, the sane side, as much as we can! So here we go!

Never before have societies across the world, found themselves to be dodged and challenged each day on some or the other issue, whether that is a social problem confined to a limited area, society or a nation, or whether it is a global challenge which touches areas of international trade, commerce, public policy, diplomacy or the so-called space of the new-age climate change fanatics! All these arenas have one thing in common and that is the compelling urge for the whole of humanity to take a position on each and every issue that comes their way- either you are for something or against something, even when you think that you would like to stay neutral and not join the fools’ bandwagon for meaningless pursuits, you are soon labelled by both ends as being a coward, incompetent or still worse a human wreck!

Humanity, as it evolved always had to battle and put forth one new age thought over the other and that is what the essence of progress and development has always been and will always be, but never before was anyone compelled to take a position like each one of us are required to do so- call it social conformation bias, societal pressures or simply a social model, if you don’t belong to something or someone, you belong to no one, that is what the human race has sadly come to be! But how did we reach this place? Why has it become so necessary and qualifying to take stands and demonstrate ones’ likes’ dislikes’ ideological affiliations such a pronounced way? What is really unfolding in all this space? Read on!

Our disconnected world, was perhaps more unifying and collaborative in the sense of being able to bring together the finest of human minds across varying fields- arts, sciences, innovation and that is what has been the hallmark of the modern age renaissance across the world through the 16th century onwards! Unique thinking was debated, discussed and either adopted or left alone, but never was the beholder of that thought vilified and neither were the people who rallied around exponents of different thoughts were made to pledge their allegiance and choose one of the many or the choices that lay in front of them! This is what empowered the free spirited and unabashed, care free thinking and experimentation!- A foundation on which all human development and progress- even until this day stands on! The fact remains that, the fabric of stretched space and time and space between developments gave enough time for people to think through a much required calibrated pause and that further went on to enrich the original ideas and made them stick like nothing else ever has! In fact many of the modern day marvels of engineering, appliances, gadgetry are nothing but an example of in depth pursuit of an original idea, followed up by continuing improvisation as the changing times would have called for!

Paradoxically enough as this boom of ideas began to get more and more predictable and routine, through the 18th century and the earlier part of the 19th century and as humanity began to exhaust, the meaningful pursuit of ideation breakthrough’s for “need to have” aspects of our lives and began to move towards “good to have” spaces, things soon began to get complicated! This complication stemmed from “the rewards that were being offered to come up with a new way at looking towards old things!” Well, needless to say in no time, narratives, competing statements and ambiguity began to replace- simplicity and clarity and once this approach starts to take a strangle hold on the ways of working of societies, all your intellectual ammunition thrown at it to bring in some much needed sanity, is almost always misused and thrown back at you, further aggravating an already worsening problem and in no time- the ground is set to create two powerful sections and segments within a society “With” or “Against”. This is the very moment which gave birth to what we see manifest around us, every now and then with an ever increasing instance, this compelling greed of wanting to control, wanting to belong to “x’ or “y” or “z” and wanting to just rant off “it’s only mu way” all the time is what sets the tone to further drive the divide even more further and at times make it wide enough, so that no meaningful bridges can ever be built, even if someone later would want to!

It is this modern day, madness that urges people to see things in the binary, or of either being black or white, for or against them, and situations like these is what makes humanity really color blind in the real essence of the definition of being color blind! It is this modern day approach of wanting to push through a specific narrative, direction, way of life, way of existence, way of belief, way of going about is what really ends up creating a sharp divide among humans- within families, friends, societies and nations- add to this a layer of “intelligence gone berserk” and on a trajectory of “wanting to control” and you have a recipe for disaster- which is what our modern world is more or less all about!

This menace of wanting people to see the world around them in a “black or white”, “my way or your way” kind of binary set up is perhaps the most un serving aspect of humanity as it stands today! If the digital age has done something to this space, it ahs gone further to add to the chaos and ensured that the dumb become more dumber and the wise become more sly- enough to ensure that the ambiguity and confusion is spread and sustained more rapidly and with more driven intentions, to further shirt serve people, societies and humanity at large! The digital age has indeed become one potent weapon of mass destruction- which if harnessed meaningfully can add colors and vibrancy to the lives of millions around the world, but as the few strive to retain control over the many- needless to say- this magical digital world- often ends up being an extension of compelling narratives and a larger then life intellectual graveyard in its own sense! So what is the way forward, is there something that you and I can do about this? If yes, what is that we can do? Read on!

Sure enough, there is no one size fits all solution to this overhanging menace of our modern times, simply because all situations and contextual realities are almost always different even though they seem to be similar enough, they are never the same. Having said that, the only meaningful way to deal with this compelling pressure of living in a binary world is by allowing yourself to see your life through a prism! Just like the prism splits white light and leaves us awestruck with the array of the rainbow colors, we too can arrive at meaningful inferences, rejecting the compelling binaries that are thrown our way! There certainly will be times when binaries may be true and correct, but unless things around you are made to pass the test of the prism, you can never be certain about what colors are hidden in the plain light that is shining your way! Now you may be wondering, what is this magical prism all about!

Well that magical prism is the prism of your intelligence which is anchored on the pivots of wisdom, rationality and humanistic realities! You see, no matter who says what, unless science develops to a very advanced level, this third rock from the Sun is all that we have got and if you think escaping a situation was a great act, you will be gravely mistaken, for some other contextual settings may soon entrap you and compel you to solve some problem which is not even yours’ to begin with! This is the truth of our connected world, problems come from some odd pocket, created by few actors residing some where else and the consequences being faced by yet another society!

Unless you and I don’t make that extra effort to behold the sights and sounds of our fleeting world through the prism of discernment anchored on values and attributes that serve the greater good of the society that we are in, everything that you and I try to do will always be seen to be either “for” or “against” and we risk being entrapped into the binary world and end up being the unwitting contributors furthering a meaningless pursuit!

I leave you with these thoughts for now, urging you to bring in your prism to behold the life around you so that you see the colors hidden away in the ordinary looking light that comes your way! Life is certainly beyond binaries and the competing narratives that we are always left to play around with! The real essence of life and meaningful narratives only thrive once you are able to see beyond the binaries and are able to take a stand which does not necessarily mean a choice between “for” or “against”!

Ciao for now, will be back soon with another one! Until then stay safe and stay wise!

The real miracle.

If you have been wondering what the world has ended up becoming and if you have been wondering if miracles do exist and how does one embrace them; join me here we we take a quick trip down this space and decipher the real essence of miracles and what is that we can do, to harness them and have them within and around us! So here we go!

Each one of us wake up every morning seeking, hoping or praying for a miracle, whether the definition of that miracle is wining that odd lottery, that lucky hand at poker or just being able to survive a day at a crazy workplace or perhaps even plain simple staying alive- whatever that means to you, the fact remains that human lives are an expression of this mad obsession to seek and hold the miracle that one pursues!

Humanity has always been a story of hope and within that space resides the compelling belief for a miracle to break free and manifest to address some pressing challenges, whether they are for an individual or for a collective society. But what are thee miracles really? Why are they so rare and infrequent? Why do they seem to favour a few and disregard the many? Why do they manifest when they do and why do they stay elusive at some other times? Well if you too have been plagued by these questions and others as well, read on as we take a step to understand these “miracles” more aptly!

Based on what it means to you or a society, the miracle could be a factor of either of the two fundamental blocks- they can either be intrinsic or extrinsic and each one of these will almost always have a rational and scientific explanation- which more often than not is either hidden in plain sight or for some reasons (best known to the people who do so)- is just overlooked! Whether it is about that sudden spell of rain (or should I say rain when you were not expecting it – for your lack of knowledge of the weather around you!) or that winning of lottery or game of chance (as you came closer and higher in the probability space) everything that the human mind has attributed to being a “miracle” almost always has been a story of manifestation of efforts whose count has been lost! This is the space where so much of labour has gone in and for so long that when the seed begins to finally emerge from the shadows as a tree laden with fruits- very often in the daily hustle of life we have lost track of that seed and all the fruits coming our way seem to be simply magical and a miracle- the real essence here is that the seed may not have been planted by you- but by someone else- either intentionally or unwittingly- you just end up being there to enjoy the fruits of labour (perhaps connected or not to you!)

When it comes to the bounties of nature and the miracles that happen as we engage with nature- they follow the rule of nature! We expect pleasant weather- where none is possible and end up creating a template around what to expect and not- this even as we know that the whole of modern science of appreciating and deciphering nature has evolved only in the last 300 years and the planet has been here longer than that and as humans we too have evolved through the eons! So when storms dissipate, we are thankful, when we sense that earthquake – we are on the edge and as we get to tame the waves, note the rain and decipher the snow around us- we begin to read the cryptic messages of nature and in no time- miracles seem to dwindle away as regular occurrences and it is then left to only a handful rarest of the rare weather manifestations which are left to qualify for being a miracle and more often then not these are a direct impact of a localized geographical phenomenon which binds the elements of nature in a strange manner!

Miracles are nothing more or nothing less, but the last remaining frontiers of time and space for which the rational thought and explanation is yet to arrive! However when it comes to the intrinsic space, the real miracle has been very accurately identified and deciphered- that space of the miracle is really who you are! The real miracle is you! Each one of us are a living example and an unfailing citation of being a miracle- by simply being who we are and what we are- whether that helps us to pursue what we strive for is a different story- but the fact remains that each one of us is a miracle unto ourselves and that is the real essence of humanity! This is what makes the world what it is- a diverse, complex and yet unifying mix of pursuits and passion which help us propel human societies a step ahead from where they were earlier! Then why is it that there is so much strife and struggle?

Well, the strife and struggle emerges as we begin to pursue and seek what is not meant for us – not because we can’t or we shouldn’t, simply because that is not what is meant for us to seek! Ships look grand in the harbour and aeroplanes look beautiful by the hangars, but that is not where they are meant to be! This is what is applicable to us as well, we may be good perhaps, too good being what we are, doing what we do, but the million dollar question is, whether that is what we are supposed to be doing? If you have ever wondered, why nothing miraculous has ever come your way, perhaps the answer resides in this space, your pursuits are in the wrong direction and perhaps for the wrong intent! Miracles will emerge only once you align yourself, your life and pursuits to do what you are meant to do and for you or me to understand and decipher that code- could be a day’s job or at times a lifelong pursuit that comes calling only when we have perhaps few extra months or hours to spare! This is the essence of relation that humanity has with miracles and perhaps that is what makes them seemingly so rare and elusive- as a large chunk of humanity keeps pursuing what is not meant for them, they simply keep moving farther and farther away from realizing their true potential to touch and experience the miracle that they are entitled to and this is what makes miracles seem so unrealistic and elusive!

The miracles are as real as your efforts, intent and pursuits are in the right direction and if there is any real meaningful miracle- that is about being able to find that right direction, at the right time and in a right way- for unless this happens- everything that is about to manifest- gets either vibrant and enduring or tends to get complicated and ambiguous- however in either of those scenarios- there will be a strong prevailing case for the onset of the miracle with a different timeline as far as the enduring value that it will bring along with it!

Miracles are only as real as your ability to decipher and behold them, timing is of essential value and alongside that unless the miracle doesn’t serve the greater good- rest assured it will lie buried or at it’s very best manifest as some half-done job by a great master!

Do take some time off and do ponder around the miracle that has come your way- if nothing has ever come your way- chances are- you- yourself perhaps are the miracle manifesting in the lives of the people around you- simply by doing what you do!

Ciao for now, will be back soon, until then stay safe and stay wise- yes miracles are real- as real as your ability to dream, behold and manifest them!

Transformation through Change.

Change becomes empowering when you agree to transform as it ushers in and each time you try to hold on to a status quo- whatever that may be- you will almost always struggle with change and subsequently with the compelled transformation! Join me as we take a look through this space and understand what really is unfolding here!

Even as we know for sure that change is the only certainty and it is an ongoing basis, the mind tricks us enough to view it from a point of disbelief, insecurity or fear- which at times is nothing more than the hallucinatory powerplay played upon you by your overthinking mind! Sure enough, there are times and episodes when these fears and anxieties may turn out to be true, but going about your life fearing what is perceived and exhibiting disregard to what really persists, is a grave miscalculation! Most of us end up living a life that we behold simply because we see the process of transformation induced by change as two separate things and that is where the real essence of our pivot to success resides!

Leaders, Humanists and masters of the science of human behaviour have written, spoken, discussed and debated about the aspect of change and its ramifications on humans- both as Individuals and collectively as societies many a times. They have done so by applying different contexts and viewing lenses- if you may say so- but a singular fact across all studies and all scientific and value based deciphering of the concept of change is the fact that change is inevitable! It will happen- sooner or later- whether you like it or not- it will and the path too is pre-determines- the only thing that you and I can control or determine is the intensity with which it embraces us or we embrace it- whatever way you want to take that and this only is possible when you are ready to be transformed and ride the crest of the wave that change ushers in!

You would have heard the phrase very often, “Being in the right time, at the right place and with the right people”, now think around this sentence as the crest of the wave of the oncoming change! Makes sense? Well, this is why leaders who lead and set course for societies- either as politicians or the business tycoons- are almost always ready and prepared for what’s heading their way- at times it seems too real to believe- but we have seen and observed that all around us all the time! Remember- how property rates alongside a forgotten country side suddenly began to rise and by the time you woke up to make a decision all was sold out and some “known firms” have already captured all the golden assets!, do you recall people investing in a particular way, simply to be benefitted by a federal policy a few months down the line! Likewise there could be hundreds of examples around you, which seem stranger then fiction, but are present in front of you in the form of great successful business or public icons! This is how transformation manifests when it aligns it to change in the real world in real time- whether that is about businesses, political dexterity or about Individual smartness- all of these fall in this same confined space of being alert, agile and prepared for what’s heading their way!

You see, unless you aren’t ready to transform as a response to the change coming your way- you will be a furniture! Whether you transform to benefit and propel yourself ahead pivoting on the changing contexts and truths around you or whether you decide to take up an endless battle with what’s coming your way, only to defeat yourself and tire yourself fighting nothing, is a choice that every Individual and every society has to make. there is nothing right and wrong about change, simply because it depends on what the contexts mean to whom- a boom in financial markets may be a great asset to the white collared community, but what happens on the Wall street, may mean nothing to someone managing a ranch in Texas! Contextual reality is equally important and hence even for the transformation to begin- whatever way you plan to deal with change- you first need to have a fundamental and basic understanding and awareness of what is that you stand for, what your story is and will be al about and what is that you are going to do about it!

It all begins from the space of Intrinsic and Unique attributes, values and dreams that an Individual has and when empowered Individuals come together, you have a society which is fluid and empowered to embrace whatever change comes it’s way and take it in its stride- Observe around and you will notice, societies which have had a stronger and higher record of resilience to hardships, strife and struggle have faced the pandemic of the bygone year with more relative success then those who have almost always believed to be organized, clinical and measured! Well sure enough, there could be more reasons too, but, humanity through evolution has had one trick up its sleeve all the time, that trick is about- being able to stay in a state of alert especially when life has not been an easy one and this is why societies which have been edgy, have shown more promptness and did what they weer told, simply following the need for human survival! In this space of stressed and fragile societies, there is no space for television debates and intellectual arguments for or against any development of oncoming change- there is only one response to do what it takes to survive!

Change becomes unforgiving and punishing once you decide not to transform! It doesn’t matter whether you want to align along it or against it or take some other position, but you will need to take a call, you simply can’t not do anything and stay inert or passive! You simply don’t have the choice to freeze in time and rescue yourself- you will have to do something and that something whatever you choose is almost always a process of transformation- simply because you are doing it as a response to the stimulus and triggers being sent to you by the oncoming change!

However an important aspect about transforming through change remains to be the intrinsic foundations on which you stand as an Individual or collectively as a society. More often than not, how you will respond to change is encoded in your genetic fingerprint! You will either have a natural affinity for it or a natural dislike and based on this attribute, each time you will either be eagerly waiting for it or praying for it not to occur- the real magic happens somewhere between those extremes, because only when change takes you by surprise is that it will put your intellectual competence to test and thereby based on your approach to change, either you will scale high and fast or retreat and defend with a proportional intensity and the reason for the first case will be to transform and make good of an opportunity and the second case will be about surviving for now and living another day to make the right amends! Our lives are actually a mix of these two in different proportions, the more enabling and empowering change we get to live through, our lives are enriched that better, the more stalling change that we come across, our lives end up becoming that much more challenging and inspiring should I say!

The only real and meaningful way to embrace change is to have a fundamental willingness to transform and transform through change in a way aligned to your Intrinsic ethos of who you are, what you stand for, what your journey is and where you want to reach! Whether you are a society or an Individual, as long as you embrace change as an instrument to transform, you will be rewarded with or without strife and struggle- depending on what the other elements of your story are!

Always remember, change is the only real currency for your future, and it all depends on how well you spend it by starting your transformation journey today!

Ciao for now, stay safe, stay wise, will be back soon with another one!

Vaccinated Minds and a Vaccinated Future.

If there was one defining statement that 2020 made about humanity, then it had to be the pandemic- not the pandemic itself but very importantly how humanity responded to it and eventually ended up making the solutions to deal with it even more complicated and hard! Sure enough, no one is arguing whether the pandemic was real or not and there is no reason to take away or doubt the selfless service provided by a few to save the many, but one fact can never be overlooked and that is – collectively, as human societies the world over we had our windows to course correct and stall the nightmare- which we missed – at times owing to irrational thoughts and at times owing to brazen oversight- whatever that was- all of these incidents have now pushed humanity is a tight corner- where we are now making the next blunder of trying to live a vaccinated future through the dis-empowered thoughts originating from vaccinated minds! Join me here as we take a look around this space and try to decipher why, perhaps the pandemic was the least of all the problems and how dealing with it, has ended up complicating our today and the future, and is there anything that we can really do about it- today for a better and meaningful tomorrow. So here we go!

Even as the pandemic began to make it’s presence felt, even those initial weeks (what now in hindsight seem to be the most critical) were squandered by a misplaced bravado- coming from the decision makers for nations and societies across the world- the best part- the world was waiting for decisions from people who were never ever qualified to make a sane, scientific and a rational assessment of what was unfolding- so no surprise when the decisions came- they were late, all over the place and completely irrational! You see, the virus does not really make any sense between a night curfew or a day curfew or a lockdown or whatever you call- the only thing that it is bothered about is infecting a host and moving on to the next one- if it gets lucky enough to find one! So if even the most basic thought around propagating physical distance at all places (this is important- all the places) would have been implemented in a scientific way- things would have been much better, then what they eventually unfolded to be!

The problem, was the whole concept of requiring to promote physical distance went on to become a BIG TECH agenda and a corporate agendas to make good of what could perhaps never been corrected the world over- the new ushering in of the Work From Home (pandemic) – saving corporate dollars at the expense of health and domestic peace of employees! As all of this unwanted drama began to fast take over the real issue, the virus got to do what it was always good to do, so whether you wore a mask or not, if you were stupid enough to get into a close encounter with strangers for no reasons- you were all set to pay the price! Needless to say the conversion of requirement of “physical distancing” to “social distancing” has ushered in a new extent of human to human communication break down (which anyways was fast deteriorating and average) and rest assured the costs of this new illness is yet to be factored in- no matter which part of the world you live in!

You see, science and many of the wise things and people around, really don’t care- what your individual tastes, political preferences or ideological hallucinations are, all organisms and the earth in general follow the laws of science and wherever they are flouted, some shit is bound to hit the roof – somewhere or everywhere! Sure enough, I am not suggesting, humanity did not do anything, but the whole point is all of that would have not been required in the first place, had people given science a chance over unwanted bravado and hasty decisions which simply went on to complicate a problem, leaving humanity wondering- which of the prevailing ones’ are better over the other! If you ask me, the pandemic , was a screaming example highlighting why the world needs meaningful leaders and meaningful leadership! Leadership Pandemic by virtue of Leadership Incompetence is more fatal and dangerous then the virus we found in the year bygone! So now, the million dollar question, fair enough, we screwed up, so next is what? Well, read on!

Well, the clear and present danger going forward is not about the last pandemic or even about, what if that happens again, more importantly it is about, how fundamentally humanity has been altered and how that will unfold! You see, viruses are still predictable once you study them, humans, no matter how much you study them , almost always have the ability and potency to spring up a surprise! This is the real unfolding turbulence and what makes it so fluid, is the fact that humanity (with regards to the people who call the shots) will do so by applying their vaccinate minds- a vaccinated approach to thinking!

The challenge around this development, is that, as a case of once bitten twice shy, even the most routine decision making and calibrated risk (which is so vital and has been a hallmark of humanities progress) is severely compromised and embracing inaction over action tends to become the new normal! You will begin to see decisions unfold which aim to fix what the apparent problem seems to be rather than fixing the real root of the issues cropping up! This is similar to building a bridge with no roads at either ends! The reason why this will develop is that, when you begin to limit human thinking to confines of comfortable and predictable templated outcomes- you end up creating a status quo for humanity and the playground for creative and scientific experimentation begins to shrink! Vaccinated thinking may be very good, perhaps excellent to provide a sterile, isolated social construct to alter a narrative and drive the society in a pre meditated direction, the real issue will start once people reach the destination and realize there is nothing worthwhile to cherish about and the whole journey was a wild trek with no real essence of discovery – internal or external!

The real issue of living a vaccinate future empowered through vaccinated minds is not only about limiting or constricting human expression and discovery, it is also about creating new rules, regulations and norms- written and unwritten that suit a few, drive the agenda of a few and the majority are left with no choice but to comply simply because every small breath of expressive freedom that humans will want to portray will come at a cost- either directly or indirectly and that will go on unless some next big humanist approach sets in to correct the balance! You may ask, but why should this happen, why would people and societies allow this? Well, simply because the nightmare that was created and allowed to manifest was too much too handle for many constituents of the societies world over- so like the small school kid in you, when you mess up with your home assignment and your teacher begins to set a new way of working for you to put you ion a course correction- you listen to all this is said- this is very much like that- and even as that is done- the teacher is completely indemnified and discounted from any element of doubt or incompetence- from the context of “how well was the teacher able to teach to begin with ti reprimand the student!”

Having said this, let me tell you there is still hope, no we will not end up being biometric zombies anytime sooner, but unless societies don’t begin to stand up to stupidity, dumbness and everything that defies science and common-sense, things will keep getting worse and worse! The only way to deal around with the space of vaccinated minds and ensuring our future doesn’t end up being sterile and clinically disconnected or disengaged- is by overpowering meaningless narrative by sensible and meaningful- human centric approaches and anchor on a singular pivot- that all human social progress and development has only been a story of people coming together and collaborating or working together with inspired, meaningful and sane leaders and leadership! You see, you may have a great leader, but if the leader has gone nuts and is aiming to jump down a high cliff, it’s upto you to either stop that leader or at least stop your jump!

The human story, always has and will ever remain to be of creative expression- through individuals, collectively through societies by choosing different mediums of arts and sciences- this is the fundamental bed rock on which human civilizations have thrived, survived and made meaningful progress. As long as you and I know this, assimilate this and act empowered by this thought, we will be able to deal with the dumb vaccinated minds, their un-serving thoughts and disempowering actions and will be able to change and alter the human narrative once again to stories of human empowerment- individual and collective! All that is needed is human centric leader and their humanistic leadership with a generous serving of rationality and common-sense!

I leave you with these thoughts for now, urging you to keep believing in the wisdom of science, rationality and common sense and no matter who says what, no human greatness was ever achieved by limiting human thoughts or expression and the proponents and followers of the vaccinated thinking- will stall sooner than later!

Ciao for now, will be back soon with another one, until then stay safe, stay wise and yes give common-sense a chance, always!

Are you lost in your wonderland?

As you go about your busy lives, what is that you are actually engaged in? Are you by any chance a victim of being lost in your own wonderland? Join me here as we take a short walk in this interesting space and try to understand why a major part of humanity almost always ends up living a life entrapped in their own perceptions and hallucinations and what is that we can do about this to break free of these limiting shackles and propel ahead! So here we go!

No matter where you have grown up, all of us have some or the other time read about, “Alice in Wonderland”- that sublime story of adventures of a young girl – something that even to this day brings a smile to any face- just by thinking about it- perhaps one of the most potent examples of great writing and story telling! Coming back to the real world, each one of us too, are entrapped into this “wonderland concept”. You see, you and I included all of us end up living our lives in our small or big wonderland- ever checking into something new, getting excited with something that goes as we plan and getting sad when things don’t measure up as we expect them to- well nothing to complaint about this, because this how human life is supposed to be- the regular journey between achievements and near misses! But the important aspect that we tend to miss is that, we almost always end up limiting our lives within our own found wonderlands!

Now if you have started to wonder about, what kind of wonderlands I am speaking about here, well yes, these are made up of all the perceptions, hallucinations and unfound realities that you tend to stay engaged with on an ongoing basis! What’s more funny is that, often people end up living their full lives running after their limited pursuits confined within their wonderland. So what is really happening here? Well, people are more often then not tricked by their minds and sold into believing what they think with regards to their view and approach is just fine and this is where the “wonderland effect” commences! You see, unless the mind has a ceaseless ability to question, enquire and re-validate whats around and what is being observed on an ongoing basis, people end up calibrating themselves to some metric or standard, which may or may not be relevant and thereby begin to set all their pursuits against this flawed calibration of their own abilities and competencies!

The wonderland effect is operational all around us, all the time, it goes by how we define our life, our approach and what we set out to achieve, the only problem here is that as we succumb to this effect and we tend to forego what we can be really capable of and end up short serving ourselves and others around! You see when you begin to get comfortable with all that is around you- whether it be that job or business you are engaged in, that apartment that you stay in or any other facet for the matter- you are actually ending up short serving yourself- if you tend to say quite often , “I would do this, if only…” for all that is around you! You see the wonderland effect, is all about getting lost into the maze that you have created around you by accumulating unwarranted clutter of people and things- which don’t serve you in any manner and on the contrary tend to drain you to the last drop of sanity that you are left with!

Your wonderland, rather each of our’s wonderland is a reflection of the horizon of our minds where it limits ourselves! This is the zone wherein we become comfortable about who we are, what we can achieve and how we are set on the path of our journey, the reality, sure enough is something altogether different, the reality is all about, going beyond and further then what is apparent and this is exactly why the wonderful effect is so dangerous and damaging- it holds your mind captive to its own imagination! Human minds, are almost always limited by their ability to think and that thinking is limited by the wonderland that we end up gifting ourselves, which, of course again is a product of our thinking, with a touch of our life’s learnings and experiences! If you have observed, I have not said, what is the right way, or the wrong way around this space, simply because there is none and that is what is so wonderful about humanity! It is only when people begin to accept the realities of their wonderland over the truth of their existence and ability, is that problems begin to manifest!

These wonderlands can be a thousand different things to a thousand people and more often then not the hallmark of the wonderlands stems from the foundation of insecurity, missed opportunities and mediocre acceptance before giving a worthy enough fight and attempt! You see, if you take a step back and try to rethink just around who you are, what you could have or can be and what you are currently doing, you will know the essence of what I am saying here! Sure enough there is nothing to sulk, complain or stay pessimistic about whatever life you have chosen or what has come your way- in the case where life ends up choosing you; the million dollar question is, whether you have the realization of the fact that, the life that you have given unto yourself is a sliver of what it actually could be and can be, simply because you are entrapped within your wonderland! So what’s the real story?

Well, as you stay locked into your own self-propagated wonderland, you will run a risk of not achieving what your true potential is, because that always will reside beyond the confines of your wonderland! This is the reason why you find so many people lost and confused each time whether they don’t get that promotion that they desired or when their business does not proceed the way they thought it would! People often end up living a confused life confined by their wonderland, never ever realizing what their real potential is or could have been and only if, they would have taken that one step to move beyond that comfort and predictable zones of their lives- which gives them an enduring sense of surety and safety- both of which are an enduring illusion which melt away as soon as the first major crisis emerges!

How big or small that entrapping wonderland is well largely depends on who and what you are, but more often than not it is proportional to the fears, anxiety and self-doubt and inversely proportional to the intrinsic wisdom and courage that a person may hold! So what’s the ahead?

Well, the only and perhaps the only meaningful way ahead is all about being able to know your wonderland, live through it and while doing so, stay ever aware about the greater world that resides beyond it’s entrapment! It is about developing enough intrinsic courage and leading yourself when the time is apt to move beyond and away form your wonderland to create a new reality for yourself and those around you! Enduring success becomes a lifestyle when you begin to make your wonderland a place of recreation and ensure that you come to visit it once in a while and don’t get trapped within it’s convenient and appealing comforts! The real essence of creating a meaningful life almost always resides beyond your wonderland , unless you are Alice!

I leave you with these thoughts for now, will be back soon with another one, until then stay safe, stay wise and get going for your real life beyond your wonderland!

Ciao, take care!

Thinking-Default, Design or Unique.

Human societies the world over are a reflection of the potency and efficacy of their collective thinking which again is a factor of how empowered Individual thinking is! Join me here as we take a walk down the path of the very essence of thinking and try to understand what makes us think the way we do and what is that we can do to sustain and walk the path of empowered thinking! So here we go!

Needless to say the human mind has been at the centre of all medical research and even till this day, we learn new things about it on an ongoing basis. Not going into the space of the clinical aspects of the brain, but staying aligned to the other aspect of it- that is the Thinking Mind- is what seduces Psychologists and Psychiatrists the world over! It is the sheer number of approaches that a Thinking Mind can take to events and triggers that baffles the professionals and even for someone like me who has been engaged in observation and study through behaviour, it is really an engaging discovery!

Through evolution, humanity has been able to harness the power that the brain has been equipped to first secure the “need to have” and then move further to secure and pursue “the good to have”. The essence of human development is the ability to Think! It is when this thinking begins to serve or stall that we experience progress or regress even for Individual, which ultimately ends up becoming the story of the society, simply because thinking too is infectious and contagious! No matter who you are, what you do and how well off you are or not, Thinking typically, if you ask me is either by Default, Design or Unique and based on the extent of mix that an Individual embraces around these three attributes, the space around original Individualistic Thinking is born!

Thinking by Default is pretty simple as it sounds, within this realm, Individual thinking approaches are reined in by set “acceptable” and “conformation” norms (which may or may not be relevant) and furthermore as time progresses, reinforcement of this approach creates compelling patterns- which are picked up by others (as they require) and what we are left with is a society that Thinks in a methodical and directed way (even as the reasons may or may not be valid!). This is the space where emphasis is given more to the process rather then experimentation. When genius stumbles across this space, they have only two options, be a rebel- create a great disruption and alter the narrative of the social construct or simply move away and out and pursue what their Thinking Mind calls for at another place, another society where their thinking is adequately rewarded and not bound to the chains of templated and default thinking!

Default thinking is a great equalizer, that is- it gives everyone a chance to trim at a level and as long as Individuals are ok to accept their trim they will seem to be ultra comfortable at the place where they are. The only risk with Default Thinking is that, it is predictable and can be read with great ease to a greater detail! So when you have Individuals and societies practising this method and approach, all it takes for the other person or a society to create an imbalance is to seed in a conflicting narrative or disruption (big or small- doesn’t matter!). When there are continuing small disruptions, that makes the journey of Default Thinking, tiring and testing. When disruptions are larger, it only makes the approach of Default Thinking that much more difficult pushing it back to a limited Defensive Thinking- simply because the Mind has never been conditioned to deal with what it has come face to face!

When you walk into the space of Thinking by Design or Design Lead Thinking, the whole narrative and approach towards Thinking changes and this is the birth place of Empowered Thinking- Thinking that is empowered by the elements of Design and ushers in a new dimension and potency to Human Thinking- both at Individual and Collective levels! When you begin to think by virtue of the design around you and the one that you behold within, you are directing your thinking in a powerful way to manifest what the design aims for! This is not to be mistaken for “Design Thinking” this is the space where Human mind begins to think and accelerate owing to a trigger from an omnipresent design space- which nudges the brain that can decipher it to work upon it and create new solutions for perplexing problems at macro as well as micro levels! Great innovations and discoveries are indeed a result of the human mind nudged by some compelling contextual design in the space around it! It is confluence of a fertile mind and a contextually empowering design around it, that great marvels of humanity come to see the light of the day! However there is one more higher stage wherein the human mind stays empowered and vibrant like nowhere else and that power emerges from the depths of original or unique thinking- that power is harnessed by diving deep within and coming up with solutions and answers to perplexing questions that plague humanity and when the answers are found, they have the power to alter the course of human history on a massive scale!

You see, original or unique thinking and the ability to do so is deep rooted into the very fabric and essence of the Individual and carries a vibrant stamp of Individual brilliance! This brilliance then waits for no one and has the power to create complimenting contexts and at times even change or alter conflicting settings to become helping or neutral so that the manifestation of the idea (which is held within the empowered original thought) lives to see the light of day! This is the space where iconic business tycoons are born, award wining researchers, scientists, technologists, bureaucrats and politicians all of them are to be found!

In fact if you were to turn back to any page of human history and see narrative altering spaces along that history, you will almost always stumble upon the empowering and original thought or an idea of one individual which had the potency to align everything around itself and set a new path for the society at large! This is where seeds of great revolution are set and this is the path where humanity begins to rally each time it seems to hit a wall or ends up loosing traction for some or the other reason! Hence you see, when nations seem to fail, the population almost always rallies behind a powerful leader who think different and are original and not one among the many templated solutions available and when societies elect templated leaders who are predictable- be assured that society will have a predictable future for both growth and regress- simply because everyone knows when what is coming and how to encash that time and space!

Another way of looking at this space, is that as a fact, each one of us are a combination of all these three approaches and whenever we apply our unique and original approach to what we are dealing with, you will almost always notice that you surge ahead- whether that is a positive or a negative aspect largely depends on what you end up doing with your originality- when you deploy your strengths to serve only you alone- the world is likely to take that as a negative trait, when you display an intent to serve many (that’s what normal societal norms are all about!) automatically what you choose to do, sounds humanistic and is taken as a great deed or idea! Have doubts? Well, just observe the business landscape around you right now and the political leaders of your choice, you will know what I meant here!

There is a good reason why Thinking is so vital (all of which is visible around us as it begins to get manifested!) and the path that you choose to take- rather the segment that you allow to dominate as your natural approach to think and manifest, is what will bring to life- what you manifest for yourselves and those around you!

I leave you with these thoughts for now, keep thinking and think as you must and as you can and as often you may! Ciao for now, will be back soon with another one soon!

Stay safe, stay wise and yes Think!

The “C” check approach.

The “C” check is perhaps one of the greatest learning points that we can borrow from the aviation industry! Typically in a “C” check the aeroplane is take out piece by piece, section by section, to have a through inspection, fault rectification and retrofitting of latest technology updates, hardware and software and so on and so forth- all with a singular purpose of making them as safe as ever, create that feel of newness and importantly to do away with accumulated clutter- through wear and tear and perhaps juts by being there! By the time you complete the comprehensive “C” check on the aeroplane it is as good as it gets- perhaps a shade short of being a totally new piece! Join me here to understand how this “C” check coming from the aviation industry is so relevant to who we are as Individuals and what is that we can learn from this space and apply to make our lives a shade better and brighter so that we feel empowered enough to keep soaring higher and flying further as we pursue the goals of our life!

Given the kind of complexity, that we have given to ourselves through the modern lives that we live and lead, we too are a complex piece of bio-engineering with a fleeting, thinking mind all empowered through our available sensory and extra-sensory perceptions! Like any other machine, we too fail, at times that element of failure is manageable and yet some other times that can end up being a disaster- as you have with aeroplanes- sometimes they have minor incidents and at times big disasters unfold! So what does the “C” check really do?

Well, sure enough I am no aeronautical engineer, but in plain speak- the “C”check is when the aeroplane is completely dismantled piece by piece and section by section and experts for relevant areas are put to work to check what’s working, fix what’s not and make better what can in the areas that they have expertise! What this ends up doing is, that by the end of the “C” check, the aeroplane is almost as new as it can get! The “C” check is where, the obsolete hardware and wear and tear is taken out- what doesn’t seem to be the right thing to stay on the aeroplane is done away with, what needs to get updated- does get updated and while doing so, all the relevant flight deck logs are checked for the aeroplane in concern- comments by pilots, observations by flight engineers, dispatch notes, cabin crew remarks- anything and everything that can be accessed is accessed with a sole purpose for getting as much as details as one can get so that the teams can fix all that is essential and all that is possible, so that the need to have is done right- first always and all the time and the good to have is too cared for as much as they can! When there are issues and things aren’t seemingly going anywhere, adequate safety guidelines and measures are updated and communicated to those for whom it matters and that’s how after a “C” check you have a completely rejuvenated and re-calibrated aeroplane- ready once again to touch the skies and travel the world!

Given the kind of complex machines that we humans are, it is just a matter of time before we begin to experience our kind of wear and tear- for some it is part emotional, intellectual and part physical, for few it is one of these three and for yet others, they experience varying degrees between the three at different points in time of their life and the fact remains that no matter how well you manage to pilot your life- you will hit turbulence some or the other time and you will have odd days while landing and taking off- so you too will end up having considerable wear and tear in areas where the exposure is the most!

Like with the aeroplanes, with humans too a complete resurrection is possible, but for that too happen, we must be ready to get ourselves grounded for some time! the societies we live in today are fast paced that even the compelling visit to the doctor often ends up getting optional – result- what was a simple problem, more often then not ends up getting more complicated and complex! Unknown to most of us, many of the problems that we end up facing are largely apparent and a result of the inadequate time that we are able to provide to decipher and appreciate what is unfolding around us as we tend to rush through the daily routine of our assumed lives! The first and most important compelling condition for getting a “C” check done is not when problems begin to become frequent or when a disaster unfolds, rather it is much before any of this can manifest- the time for the “C” check is every few months, years or perhaps a decade depending on who you are and what is your contextual reality of life! Your “C” check is directly hinged upon what you do and what you don’t, what you think and what you don’t, it is deeply intrinsic to who you are and the “C” check will only work for you as long as it is designed and deployed the way it addresses the challenges faced by you! So what is that really can be achieved and done through a “C” check for the human machine- that is what we have become!

Well, to begin with , always have all the checks , “scheduled”. There is no place in aviation for breakdown maintenance, the whole industry is all about preventive maintenance, we need to apply this space and ensure that, based on our intrinsic and unique requirements we are able to schedule our routine pit stops and checks and even the all important “C” check. Depending on who you are and what you do, this “C” check could be once a year, once every few years or perhaps once in a decade and it is also vital (for most of us) that we have a separate ‘C” check for our intellectual, emotional and physical health simply because, in the times we live in- we are very unlikely to have a sync or unity of gaol and purpose across all the three segments that go on to govern and define our health and well-being! But what will the human “C’ check be all about- rather what can it be about and how can it help?

Well, on each of the segments that go on to define our well being (the physical, emotional and intellectual) we need to choose our scheduled “C” check and as we do that, the more wear and tear we have in any one area, will begin to stand out and you will know with absolute clarity what is that hold you back in a given area and what is that you can do to resolve it! Whether it is the challenge of a career you have at hand, or the challenge of embracing a healthy life style- whatever that could be, once you schedule your “C” check and decide to take an adequately long pause- you will be able to come to terms with what is that really holds you back in a given area and disempowers you from realizing your fullest potential! Once you are able to do this and decipher the challenge , you will find that with each new “C” check up your problems and challenges will begin to get more unique new and something that progressively uplifts you to the next level of who you can be!

Your “C” check is a deliberate time that you are ready to invest in yourself so that once the creases are ironed out- you are a tad better then what you were earlier and are able to focus on what you intend to with a renewed approach and zeal! Just as in the case of the aeroplane, during the “C” check as every component is checked, double checked, calibrated and finetuned for the aeroplane’s performance, your “C” check too is meant to transform your life for the days ahead in a similar way- something that empowers you and aligns you to your chosen path of progress and pursuits that you may have!

I leave you here with these thoughts, urging you to take some time off and have your first “C” check scheduled in the area that troubles you the most, rest assured as you come on the other side of your scheduled down time, you will be more aligned, focussed and rejuvenated then ever before!

Ciao for now, will be back soon with another one, until then stay wise and stay safe!

Shaping the future of our Future!

We all know this too well, that the future of humanity is not in the workplaces or the offices as I type this, but rather it is across the different grades of lower school, middle school and high school across societies at this very moment! Join me here as we try to take a look into what is unfolding around that space and why we must be so concerned and what is that we can do to influence our future, just enough to nudge it in the right direction so that they have a wonderful future! So here we go!

If you are able to take that necessary pause and just observe around you, what you will see is that, unlike the earlier times (perhaps when you were a kid) there was a enough space and content for you to imagine, research and innovate. The current lifestyles that societies have embraced have simply ended up the free space and time for introspection, reflection and enquiry. No one is suggesting you to pursue philosophy, but the fact remains that unless the human mind is able to perform directed and focussed enquiry, nothing worthwhile or meaningful can ever be achieved or realized, individually or collectively as a society!

Societies around the world, even right upto the early 90’s were spaced out in the sense that, there was a choice that people could exercise, with regards to what they wanted to pursue and how they wanted to pursue it! Societies then had the space to accommodate and facilitate much of the diversity that society had to offer. If you have some doubt around this bit- just study the great organizations and icons who have made their names in the last 10-15 years, chances are they were a product of the societies of the bygone era and what they were able to create was a direct consequence of the society that they moved around in and that’s how magic and an enduring foundation for human progress has always been built!

Human imagination and creative pursuits require space and time, both of which have become a rarity- given the way societies have gone ahead and embraced the lifestyles in the last two decades. If global connectivity has been a great asset for accelerating progress and development of human societies, the same has robbed away societies of valuable space and stretched time which are so vital for ensuring that innovation and pace of progress is managed and furthered on an ongoing basis! This is why it becomes so important to understand what is unfolding around today, because all of that influences the young minds and since they are the future- the ability to create their future becomes easy or difficult depending upon what is happening in the now!

Our todays’ are invariably unforgivingly compressed and intense which leave little or not time for that much needed spaced out enquiry and that is the real danger that the current young minds face across societies all throughout the world! What this is invariably resulting into is a world where everyone is just thinking and solving apparent problems which they may have to face as long as they are and hence nothing enduring or worthwhile is ever made or come to life! Whether it is the arena of science, creative arts or even perhaps commerce- all equations and strategies are aimed to solve the problem of this year and perhaps the next few years or may be at the most of a decade but no one is really focussing enough for what resides beyond that horizon and this is what needs to be changed and that too pretty urgently- unless we want to end up handing over the world complete with myopic solutions to the future generations who in turn end up creating further such myopic visions and that eternal short changed world keeps moving on! So what needs to be done?

The first step to get humanity and the youngsters out of the rut of boxed and good-to-have thinking is all about ensuring that they have access to adequate time to think and observe what there is- rather than being asked to observe “few things around”. This small yet fundamental change can go a long way in empowering young minds to see beyond and observe aspects that surround their lives in a more holistic manner so that when the time comes to apply their thoughts, innovation or action, they are able to discern well enough and now how pulling the chord at one end of a social fabric can unleash cascading impacts not only within their society but also perhaps across societies around the globe! The only way that young minds today can insure and safeguard their future is by being able to direct their thinking and observation more towards what will be and what is that they want there to be, rather then focussing on what is and what can be- that is what happens as young minds take the first few steps of the corporate world!

Sure enough there are great organizations which allow their work force to innovate and possibly develop solutions that seem to be the promise of the future ahead, these manifestations only happen in organizations whose founders have appreciated the value of the human mind, its potency to seek solutions through stretched space and slowed time! What we can do today is that we can create that much needed stretch of time and space for the young minds around us. This can be the first and foundational step wherein we begin to encourage enquiry of all that is around us an prompt these young minds to seek advancements that outlast their lifetimes and go beyond! This change of approach to thinking wherein Individuals and collectively societies are urged to seek solutions and answers to what is around for a long hauls, is what will go on to make the big change and difference in the young minds and empower them enough to pursue a future that they will be proud to behold and pass on!

Humanity’s progress has been a testimony to the fact that great advancements have been made possible only when the most gifted human minds were free from oppressions, directed thinking and boxed-in settings! All great discovery and meaningful greatness which has lingered on for centuries and beyond was only possibly when the human mind was given that critical space and time to ponder, observe and infer in a way that serves the larger good for a longer time for everyone around!

I leave you with these thoughts for now, urging you to get that free space and slowed time for yourself to begin with to hold that meaningful enquiry which can set you on to the path of enquiry and once that happens you can go on to influence the young minds around you, so that they are able to emulate what is more potent, dynamic and answers the challenges of their tomorrow and not of our today!

Ciao for now, will be back soon with another one! Until then stay safe and keep pondering about what could be the great idea of your life!

The “Comparison pandemic”.

We all have been at the receiving end and also at the origin of this comparison fallacy and needless to say, no matter how you or try to do something about it, we almost always end up creating another case for comparisons and comparative approaches! Join me here as we take a quick look into this space of what I call as “the comparison pandemic” and decipher when it is ok and when does it begin to slip away from being helpful to being outright harmful! So here we go!

Right from childhood, what individuals normally experience is the ongoing onslaught of comparisons! Irrespective of the fact whether those are valid or not – that is not the primary concern (though a concern, for sure!), the more compelling issue is, why do we do it, encourage it or even allow this bit to propagate- even as each one of us who has lived the life of a child despised it so much. The other aspect around this “comparison pandemic” is that it doesn’t stop with our childhood and this runs deep- at times subtly and at times loudly through our college days, professional lives and even to the moment right upto our graves- because even in that fleeting moment (perhaps a little short of it)- as a human- if you are able to communicate- you still will strive to make that comment which just wants to reinforce the space that you lived a better life than “abc” or “pqr”! Even as comical and harmless it may seem. this “comparison pandemic” plays havoc and has caused perhaps the greatest damage to humanity by stiffing away young innovator’s and humanists even before they could embark on their journey to make humanity a shade better! But why has this been allowed, how did this space of comparing take on these pandemic proportions? Well read on!

Human societies since the bygone ages have been an effort to make the life experienced by the society member better- better in the sense of ease of life- starting right from the primitive goals of being alive (not getting eaten by other predators), then moving on to a life of shifting settlers and further on to eventually be permanent settlers and then go on to develop rapidly into settlements, villages, kingdoms, empires and in today’s contest the nations that we know them as today! Through this journey of the ages- every inflection point (where something meaningful and great would have been achieved) has always been when the normal ways and practises have been reset, improvised or changed completely- at times this has world and yet few other times this has been detrimental for humanity and it is from these spaces of compelling change and transformation and the creativity and destruction that goes along with these period that a vast majority of the social set- felt the urge and need to stick to what was momentarily comfortable rather then wanting to dwell into the risk prone attitude and approach (especially when things didn’t work in the societies favour!) This is the space and context from where the baby steps of the art of “comparing ” perhaps have emerged- as a survival guide more than anything else!

You see, I see you clap your hands, and you are unharmed, I too will want to do that bit and experiment, I see you cut the vegetables and accidentally cut one of your fingers a bit, well, I sure will venture ahead to chop them, but with some caution- it is these kind of everyday observed and indoctrinated ways of life that go a long way to reinforce the comparative approach and once you have become comfortable around this, you have automatically enrolled for a life of mediocre pursuits for yourself and all those who rally around you- simply because you will not move beyond a set range and the reality of life is that all great and iconic stuff happens much beyond the threshold of comfortable range! This is why when you promote the comparative approach- you end up creating intellectual clones who are as smart or as worse as the next one around and then add to this the intrinsic incompetence (which only grows with time) you set up the individual and societies with such individuals for a downward journey and a mediocre approach for eternity!

As Individuals get compared and kind of get calibrated to what is acceptable and what is not, people around often tend to overlook the intrinsic construct of the Individuality of the person and thereby anything of value that can be there is simply walked over and done away with- so once you have someone’s core intrinsic value taken away- by suggesting that what they behold is not needed in the world- instead “be like that person” who does “this or that and there and how” well, you just end up creating a templated robot who is cloned as much as possible to the so called role model! You see, being Inspired or Motivated by people who have been successful or icons is not the problem, it is when these people and their achievements are presented as the only way and approach that an Individual should pursue as their life path, is where problems begin to manifest, simply because, no matter what you do or not, this person can simply be the Master for a thousand reasons- the most fundamental among them being the “contextual settings and truth of the time in which the people lived and worked!

You may want to argue, whatever happens to the whole space around Being Inspired and Being an Inspiration for someone, well, no one is discounting that bit, but if you begin to sell Inspiration with an intent to change a crow into an eagle- you will most probably end up having a very dumb crow which just gets beaten up by the other crows! What the whole “comparison pandemic” ends up doing, is just this, creating asymmetric and unqualified ways of relativity and expectations and when these strike a cord at the fundamental beliefs of individuals- either they become more rebellious to go ahead and assert their Individuality more strongly – a kind of statement which says, “You know what, this is who I am, live with it! or at times they simply crumble and accept a life that is being thrust upon them – like a never ending role play- and with every passing moment- ending up being more fake and disconnected from within and from who they really are- could be and aspired to be!

Well, you may but what about being ambitious, what about trying to be innovative- how can we do that without comparison? Well, no one is asking you, to give up your innovative spark and neither is anyone asking you not to be inspired or learn or observe from what is unfolding around you- what is important is that you don’t end up fooling yourself, thinking that you are being innovative even as you possibly end up copying or cloning some original idea! You see, the whole premise that innovation or iconic stuff needs some comparison is absurd and wrong! If that was the case- we would have all cars similar in design and all what you see around in the world- would have ended up being just copies of some or the other things around and we would have embraced a templated world! That is not the case, isn’t it?

You see, as long as we are able to have clarity about inspiration, contextual truths of the examples around us and are fundamentally aware about who we ourselves are as Individuals, we will be able to keep in check this innocent looking yet dangerous pandemic of comparison! The Human mind is fickle by the very construct of it and what it appreciates at one point in time will be easily junked away as something better comes to it’s purview- this is- believe it or not- the evolutionary safety valve of human thinking- thousands of years back- who would not want to run into an orchard of apples or some wild fruits which could promise an abundant supply to the group, than having to risk every day in and day out their own lives as they went out for a hunting spree!

Comparisons, aren’t all bad, but how they are done, for what and the contexts more often than not make them a nuisance holistically! Not going too back into human history, the recent Covdi19 pandemic was and is a glaring example- how governments after governments went on to copy what the others did and how that ended up screwing up one nation after the another in their won unique ways simply because all similarity with human kind ends with the fact that we are humans and beyond that point each one of is differentiated or levelled to the society that we have got to live around in and as diverse societies try to strike a common line of similarity- almost always the outcome will be disastrous!

Meaningful comparisons stand true in the test of science. The big corporate world- though having its own set of challenges has fared a shade better when it comes to do meaningful comparisons- You see when the corporate world is able to make meaningful comparisons based not on the intrinsic individuality of the people, but rather on the Authority, Position, Span of Control and Sphere of Influence, that is when magic happens and you are able to find it much earlier when teams and people are performing or perishing and the possible why around it becomes easy- as long as the study is on the process and not on the Individuality and Personalities of the Individuals!

Well, to put it simply, comparisons to work, they need to be meaningful and they need identical (not similar) contexts of time and space- everything done without this fundamental attribute under the garb of comparison is plain stupid and is actually meant to drive some or the other human agenda based on what the content of study is and what is being compared and why!

I leave you with these thoughts for now, urging you to shun the space around the “comparison pandemic” in your lives and around you and embrace Individuality of people around you, as much you would like them to reciprocate the same! Just remember- there is a reason why nature is asymmetric and why each one of us is unique- even if you happen to be that Identical Twin- that is how far your similarity will go- rest all is about the matter that the mind beholds within! The next time someone tells you, “You are not like , B or C”, just tell them who you are and possibly reintroduce yourself! Their feeble minds should start working from that point!

Ciao for now, will be back soon with another one, until then stay safe, stay wise and yes- compare what is meaningful enough to compare; everything else, is best the way it is!

Welcome 2021 the 2020 way!

As ironical it may seem, the fact remains that what did not kill you probably nourishes you! Join me here as we take a quick look through this last blog on 31st December 2020 about what 2020 really signified, what were it’s whispers (which were heard and which went unheard) and what is that 2021 is already signalling even as you eagerly await for it’s embrace- which either could be a warm hug or a deathly embrace! So here we go!

Sure enough, each one of us would have had many small stories of personal victories and success and all of that went down the drain- literally in 2020 and pretty much rapidly everything and all that seemed to be humanistic and normal began to seem absurd and all things strange and stupid began to become the new bright thought of new age thinking! Remember those endless meetings in the office meeting rooms before the lock downs and then the ensuing disaster that followed for you to having to deal with the same ordeal with an added layer of technological complexity compounded by your technological incompetence and ignorance! Well this perhaps would have been one of the many such moments that 2020 brought to all of us where the singular message was , “If you think you know it All, Life always has a plan B and that plan B has the potency to uncomplicate what you complicate and complicate what you strive to simplify!”

Each one of us began 2020, the way we usually did all our lives and when the spanner was thrown it showed us the fragility and the momentous existence that all of us hang by! Needless to say, few of us have been humbled, few destroyed, yet few counting their lucky stars and yet others who did feel nothing much- but all in all humanity has been impacted and what we have seen unfold and what we will see unfold will all be but a testimony about what happened to us in 2020! People and their disposition in 2021 will all be but stories about what happened to them in 2020 and how they dealt with them! Furthermore it will be a test of human resilience and fortitude to keep battling what 2021 keeps throwing at you, day in and day out- sometimes as extensions of the prevailing pandemic and yet at other times nudging people into a tight corner- require them to re-calibrate and re-assess – promoting the new onslaught of innovation!

If there is something else too that helped people survive if not thrive, it was their ability to fall back on their intrinsic abilities- basically living their lives and finding a way through their lives- for one time- by being who they really were! You see, until the pandemic arrived, everyone always had the liberty to cloak their reality and move around the world pulling over suitable attire that could match an occasion and thereby successfully hiding away the real and creating more and more compelling illusions and camouflage around them, just like everyone else did! No sooner the virus came calling, these mansions built on created and apparent illusions and hallucinations owing to societal compulsions cam crashing down like a pack of cards and soon enough societies across the globe soon began to find their new definitions across the strata and these newly established definitions will linger on for a good time to come- because the new founded world order within the social strata has just begin to form and it will take some time to formalize the agreed ways of engagement once again and 2021 will be a story which will capture this essence of humanity in great detail! People will see societies simplifying, expanding, contracting and getting more wrapped in or vocal based on what is being played out on the home turf within those pockets across the world! People within societies who successfully align to these dynamics will be safe- those who choose to take a different route either will emerge as lighthouses or perish as unsung sand bars- depending on how well they choose, what they do and how they time what they choose to to!

Given the fact that 2021 will have lingering shadows of 2020 and haunting visits of the year bygone, intrinsic abilities will be tested like never before and individuals will have to bank upon them to begin re-connecting and re-engaging with fellow members of the society in a more meaningful and purpose driven manner. It is just a matter of time, in 2021 that so called “experts” will come to the foray and start writing articles and papers on the “horrors of work from home” and begin stressing for people to engage and communicate, well, I had actually talked about this much earlier! The ability of individuals to see and sieve through conflicting narratives (as they did in 2020) too will be of paramount importance to ensure that they don’t end up entrapping themselves in some illusionary challenge and end up fighting a war that no one cares about and nobody is watching!

Similarities for all the years begin and end with the societal set that will be influenced and that will influence it and this is why it becomes easy as well as difficult in the same breath to navigate changing calendars! You see, the rational part of the mind says, that same problems have similar approaches and solutions that would have previously worked, while in the same instant, the mind desperately seeking some “kick” want to experiment and try out and at times this unwanted and unnecessary indulgence ends up screwing up even the most noble of intentions and efforts!

Finally what will remain at the foundation of what you and I do, will be the humanistic construct that we behold within ourselves and how we plan to deploy that to serve others and take a persuasive stand to ensure it goes that way! 2020 was all about being in gratitude and being grateful for what we had, have and what we aspire to have and this practise is what must and will continue in 2021 as well. As long as this approach to life enshrined with gratitude and humility prevails even the challenges thrown by 2021 will seem to fade away rapidly then before and importantly will accelerate the pathways to create new approaches and solutions for a more meaningful interconnected cohesive human existence with shared experiences and values which go a long way to nourish the essence of being human!

I leave you here with these fleeting thoughts for this last day of 2020 and hold each one of you in my prayers and thoughts- for the journey together will certainly continue with a fresh promise, new hope and unfailing human resilience- that is the way which saw humanity through 2020 and that is what will also empower humanity to see through 2021 and enables you and I to come up with compelling stories and narratives of hope, success and humility in all that we achieve and also in things where we fall short to achieve! Always remember, there is a reason, what you and I have come this far and the onus is now upon us- each one of us to ensure that with the Life that we have, we make sure that the reason why we came this far- creates something meaningful and purposeful- something that serves not only us but to the many around us who reach out to us and perhaps even those – to whom we need to reach out to!

What worked to overpower 2020, sure enough will help you and me to prevail over 2021 as well, should the need arise, but that is where the similarities end and it is beyond this space, when we apply who we are to what we choose to do is that we will begin creating differentiating value and empower ourselves and others around us to surge ahead and stay ahead in the race to carve out meaningful existence in an ever changing dynamic and chaotic world that we own!

Before I sign off, Here’s Wishing Each One of You, A Very Happy New Year and hope you are able to weave your magic the way you aspire to do so in the year that promises to be both same and different in the same construct of time and space! Stay Wise and Stay Blessed! Ciao for now, will be back soon with another article- in the new year and our journey, goes on unveiling a new sunrise for a new pursuit!

Leadership nuggets for a new world order.

Well, sure enough you may be busy right now, packing your bags or navigating your travel for that much needed and required escape from the realities of the life that you have been blessed with; here’s a quick share with you on what is that the rejigged onset of leadership will possibly seem like as you arrive back to your workstations! So join me here and let’s take a quick sneak peek into what promise the corporate world holds and what is that you and I can do when it comes to leadership and deploying the same!

Well, if 2020 was what and how it turned out to be, it just goes on to stress the importance and relevance of leaders and leadership! Whether the space is about being a leader in the public domain, whether it is about leading a corporate house or whether it is just about leading yourself, irrespective of what is the mandate that you are accountable for, 2021 will be more of a benchmark timeline wherein new leaders will emerge and current leaders will have to reinvent themselves and their leadership styles to meet with the changing dynamics of the social construct around them and the evolving contextual realities! Importantly, whether you just choose to lead yourself or others as well, there will be few fundamental aspects that will have to be met with and which will go on to set up the narrative for leaders and their leadership in the times ahead! These fundamental spaces are what will go on to make leaders and leadership relevant or obsolete depending on how well these are either assimilated and deployed or ignored and forgotten! So what are these aspects? Well,read on!

Empathy: Empathy perhaps is the biggest pivot that will have to be deployed and leveraged upon in the times ahead! As humanity begins to take baby steps to re-connect and re-engage trying to establish the new normal or in-person connect, empathy will be the foundation on which everything else will reside. Leaders who are able to sense this aspect and demonstrate adequate amount of empathy will find it easier to collaborate, lead and inspire fellow members and thereby paving the way for an accelerated growth or that of a rapid pursuit of what has been set as an objective.

Intentional Listening: The times ahead will demand a new age of focussed and directed listening, what I call as “Intentional Listening” wherein the whole approach to listen is not to respond or react but to understand the contexts around what is being discussed and said and analyse the content with a holistic lens of what the matter is, who is delivering the message and sure enough, what the ecosystem is within which the impacts will be experienced and improvised. Leaders who invest more time in this space of “Intentional Listening” will be better equipped about the real over the apparent and thereby will be able to take empowered and decisive decisions based on a holistic detail that they will be be able to decipher through this space!

Simplified and Focussed objectives: The times ahead will demand leaders to provide ongoing clarity and demonstrate a continuing ability to uncomplicate complexities. With majority of humanity already tested to their limit of mental resilience in 2020 through the pandemic, before it and now after it, the last thing that co-workers, colleagues and members of the society want will be any remaining element of ambiguity or chaos – especially when it comes to areas of work and societal equity. Leaders who are able to uphold simplicity and clarity will be able to race ahead and make significant impact over others as they engage and work alongside teams to create magic like they did in the good old days!

Intrinsic Leadership: Sure enough effectiveness through leadership can be achieved by leaders emulating different styles and approaches, but the times ahead will demand a new way and that is the way of the “Intrinsic Leader”. You see, given the contexts from where societies are emerging and the challenges that they face, leaders who are able to share, display a strong intrinsic, unflinching and unwavering leadership approach in areas that they represent will see a surge of followers and leaders alike simply because “Intrinsic Leadership” is highly contagious and it is that super glue which empowers societies to move mountains, should the need arise. This enormous power comes from the fact that Intrinsic Leaders, lead from within and as they do so, they rely on their superpowers and their uniqueness to create unparalleled approaches which go a long way to address compelling challenges on hand!

Automating Human Intelligence: Leaders who will be smart enough to focus on the aspect of automating the available human intelligence within their teams and around them, will be the ones’ who will be able to make the most optimum use of any technological automation that happens around them to further their business objectives! You see, you may have the bets dashboards, the greatest MIS tool, or the simplest automated diagnostic tools at your disposal to propel your business or social experiment, but if the “people” who are entrusted with their management and design are handicapped in their ability to think the human way- well even the best automation will go waste and will end up being another piece of glorified digital garbage! Leaders who are able to fine tune their technological automation in line with the human intelligence at their disposal, will be able to take significant advantage and there by create an innovator’s edge to provide unique solutions and niche approaches to problems on hand! Global Leaders know this space too well and hence if there’s one thing that happens all the time behind the scenes with regards to artificial intelligence is the effective and resourceful deployment of human intelligence behind the scenes to ensure that what unfolds in services stays relevant, meaningful and viable! Leaders who are able to create an ongoing handshake between human kind and automated technological interfaces will be the ones’ who will be at a significant advantage and will also hold the key to create new bed rock for subsequent innovations!

The Humanistic approach: Leaders who embrace the humanistic approach will stand tall to reap the benefits of their approach, especially in the arena of public and societal leadership. If 2020, has done one thing, it has been a great leveller and a great teacher for humility! Leaders who continue with this belief will be able to see beyond the routine people engagement and will be able to carve out meaningful and directed interventions to serve humanity in the context of their span and reign of influence and control.

More the Leaders Greater the Influence: Leaders who recognize and are able to deploy their Leadership through others- by creating more leaders (as opposed to followers) too will define the Leadership style and success stories of the future! Humanity has learnt through 2020, that the same work can be done through different ways and even as that is been done- the efficiency or effectiveness would have more or less remained in the same broad range (else you would have either shut your shop or would have begin to hate the color pink- because of the slip provided!). This has created opportunities to devise new definitions of success for leaders and leadership alike and one such compelling metric involves the ability to influence so as to create more leaders and and thereby enhance influence through more leaders- rather than followers! Companies of the future that are able to identify and encourage more leaders will stand to gain as more leaders will go on to create a larger circle of influence overlapping among the leaders in an organization and externally create a more positive story for the services through their leaders and their leadership style!

Being Authentic: Finally this is one aspect that will matter in a big way, simply because the disruption of 2020 has brought home a vital lesson that templates don’t necessarily always work and that uncertain times call for unconventional solutions and answers! This can only be realized and delivered as long as Leaders and their leadership style empowers people to stay authentic and have their original ways of thinking working alongside the routine “work to order” set of thinking! It is the power of original thinking that has always empowered and rescued humanity from calamities time and again and history is replete with such miracle of human mind, especially when they were allowed to think independently, unconventionally and by being who they were, that is encouraging thinking in an authentic manner!

I leave you with these thoughts for now; sure enough this is not a limited list and you would want to expand it further and develop it in a more aligned matter to all that you pursue. Be the Leader that you always sought and deploy the Leadership that you always wished for and then you will be surprised to see the change and empowerment that you bring along for yourself and the ones’ around you!

Ciao for now, will be back soon with another one soon, until then get that much needed break and gear up to face another impressionable day!