Organizations – Wonderland?

Something to think about…

Organizations are artificial structures which provide you a fantastic opportunity to associate with people you would never, ever associate with under normal situations. Organizations provide us with an unparalleled opportunity to grow, to become more, to express the best part of ourselves in a setting which claims to be about tasks, goals, targets, missions and all that… but is really about who you choose to be with respect to all of these and the people around you.

Probably if not for organizations, our experience would be severely limited in terms of the number and the kind of people we would associate ourselves with.

If you think about it, every single day – surrounded by a milieu of people whom you don’t know, probably are not like and probably do not like – it’s literally a rabbit hole down there waiting to be explored by you.

New Web Site Coming Up

A big overhaul of www.abhishekkumar.com – my web site is underway. Some very key elements to make the web site successful are yet to be figured out. I have been spending the past two days learning about Keywords, Meta Tags, and Frames etc. I went to college with computer science as a major, so I cannot claim complete ignorance of the technologies that work behind the scenes to make a web site come alive on our computer screens. I do believe, though, that the process of creating a search-engine friendly, well organized, logical web site can have a steep learning curve. Well, I am climbing.

I am also planning a series of articles on the most common personal development issues we face.

So, coming…
All this and more.
Stay tuned. (

Thank you Firaq Saab!

Almost ten years back, I read a verse by Firaq Gorakhpuri that touched me deeply –

Ae mere ahbab kya kare numayan kar gaye…
B.A kiya M.A kiya, naukar hue, pension mili aur mar gaye…

(Oh my friend, You have indeed achieved a remarkable feat…
You did your schooling, you went to College, you worked in a job, you got your pension and you died…)

The moment I read this verse (Called a ‘Sher’ in Urdu), something resonated deeply inside me. The fact that I remember the verse almost by letter ten years after I read it first holds testimony to that.

This verse was a moment of insight for me and the ‘wow, I get it’ feeling that I had changed my life for the better.

It taught me to look beyond the path that was laid out for me by my family and the society in which I was born.

It taught me – that life is about more than what seems to be the most obvious and the easiest path to follow.

It drove me to look deeper, inside myself for purpose and fulfillment.

Thank you, Firaq Gorakhpuri.

Time Management in the Moment

The field of time management has been explored like never before in the past 60 years.

We have graduated from talking about better planners and increased efficiency to living our purpose and being effective.

We have evolved from talking about doing a lot of things in a day to doing a few things that really matter in the day. (The urgent vs. important principle)

All of these ideas are important and deserve some serious thought.

However, one of the key observations anyone with a slightly evolved consciousness would make is

“Life is always lived in just one moment”

That single unit of time in which you read this article and slide into the next moment is where life is – that is the only place you will ever live.

Every single moment – literally zillions of possibilities exist in front of us. Every single moment we choose one of these possibilities and make up our life as we go along.

Right now, you could close this window and start working on a project that really matters to you but you have not had the courage to start, you could write a letter to your mother, you could browse irrelevant sites, you could get up and scream a profanity, you could quit your job, you could go for a run…. The possibilities are endless.

And the only thing that prevents them from coming true – is that you don’t choose them.
But right now, couldn’t you choose to express yourself in any which way you want?

How can we ever be bored or stuck or be in a ‘rut’ if this is true?

The answer to that is complicated, but based on two pillars.

  1. Conditioning
  2. Fear

1. We believe certain things about ourselves. Generalizations we assume to be true. And then we feel we have to live by those generalizations. We literally, belief by belief, thread by thread create a structure that imprisons us in it. We trap ourselves into a corner and create the illusion that we do not have choice.

Choice is the ultimate and the only weapon we have to create any reality we desire.

You can choose a different belief, a different action, a different thought, a different idea, a different word, a different emotion, a different system, a different way.

What happens sometimes is – we make a bad choice and then we suffer. But instead of choosing again and choosing differently, we believe that we are the choice we have made. We use the consequences of that choice to define ourselves and then use this self-definition to create a limited reality – with limited experience, limited joy, limited fulfillment, limited satisfaction, limited happiness.

Most of the times, we choose unconsciously – we repeat patterns of past choices (often bad choices) even though they have not served us in the past.

The first step then is to become conscious of what you are choosing. Awareness is the first step to change. An evolved consciousness is a result of accurate witnessing or observing.

If you do not like what you are creating in an area of you life – choose again, choose wisely, choose differently.

Let me repeat that.

If you do not like what you are creating in an area of your life – choose again, choose wisely, choose differently.

If you want to create a result in your life, your new choices must be aligned with it.

Choosing wisely, choosing differently, choosing again in the moment is what the urgent/important theory is all about.

2. I talked about Fear. The question you might be asking right now is “How do I choose wisely?” or “How do I know which is the right choice?”
A choice born out of Fear is the choice that will limit your experience. A choice born out of love is the higher choice. If we must err, let us err on the side of love.

An enhanced awareness will let you answer this question “In this moment, am I expressing myself through fear or through love?”

A choice born out of Love will always be the higher choice.

Time Management, from a spiritual perspective boils down to two To-Dos

  1. Don’t like what you are manifesting? Choose differently, choose wisely. Choose a different emotion, a different action, a different word, a different state of being, a different belief. It is impossible to live without choosing – just choose what serves your highest vision of yourself.
  2. How do we know we are making the higher choice? Choose Love over Fear.

Summary

  1. Choose consciously
  2. Choose Love

Role Playing

When I walk into a restaurant or a coffee-shop – I assume the role of a customer.
And the person serving me assumes the role of a waiter.

I play my role – some characterisics of which are to expect , demand some things, even if they mean inconveniencing the other human who plays the role of a waiter.

The waiter plays his role – some characteristics of which are to fulfill my desires, even if it means inconveniencing himself.

Busy playing our roles, both of us fail to notice the inherent humanity glowing within the other.

If I am a boss, and you are my subordinate. We are not two human beings sharing humanity.
If I am a father, and you are my child, here is the rulebook for that. Please fit in. We are not two human beings growing together.
If I am an expert, and you are not – I cannot say “I don’t know” because that is not acceptable to the game we are playing.

If we stop acting our roles out and start acting human, how will our experience change.

‘Topics’ under Blog

Posts are now sorted into topics.

Most of today was spent trying to learn how to sort the posts in this Blog topic wise, instead of by months – as is the default provided by Blogger.

After hours of browsing and learning and looking at scripts that seemed more hostile than Chinese…finally I got it working.

On you right, you would see the topics under which the posts are divided. When you click on a topic, the page re-loads and all the posts under that topic get displayed just below the heading “Topics”

Hope this makes accessing posts for you easier.

Conversations R Us!!

Conversations are reflections of who we are being in that moment.

Think about it, how does a deep, honest, intense, touching, passionate, incredible conversation leave you feeling – energized, recharged…. Your personal energy increased and the world a little bit brighter than it was earlier, isn’t it?

And how does a shallow, superficial, pretentious conversation leave you feeling… drained out, tired?

In a conversation when we express the deepest and the best parts of ourselves (invariably, the deepest part of us is usually the best part of us), we express or manifest our true selves.

In fact, life is expression, isn’t it?

In fact, we cannot not express.

Right now, as you read these words, infinite potentialities and possibilities exist within you. The very next moment, what you think, decide, do or say is an expression of one of these infinite potentialities.

When we express a potentiality or a possibility, we bring a latent or a hidden part of ourselves into existence. As we bring it into existence, we experience it and it becomes, our experience.

If we habitually express a part of ourselves again and again – it becomes a pattern of experience in our lives and we start ‘believing’ that we are ‘it’.

But, at that point – every other potentiality and possibility also exists – latent, hidden, unexpressed.

If you want to assess the quality of your experience and the quality of your life – take a closer look at the quality of your conversations.

Conversation is a tool we use everyday, regularly to express ourselves.

The quality of your conversations would probably reveal a great deal about what you are bringing forth from the world of infinite possible expressions called – you!!

To improve the quality of your experience, improve the quality of your conversations.

If your conversations are happy, intense, passionate, happy, contended, joyful, cheerful and ‘soul’ful… then so are you!

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Brain, Mind and Me

For more than a decade now, I have been fascinated by the human mind. And the more I have understood, the more baffled I have become.

Simple things – seemingly simple things like perception, decisions, awareness, emotions are such complex events and happen at so many levels (chemical, electrical, macroscopic- physiological, environmental, metaphysical, spiritual…) that with every passing moment, my awe and respect for the web of complexity in which we live has only increased.

While scientists have made some useful connections in terms of details, we are still struggling with some very basic questions –
“What is consciousness?”
“Who is the observer?”

Recently I have been reading a book called “How do brains make up their minds?” by Walter J. Freeman. In spite of the deceptively simple title, the book is a difficult read, but I am persisting and the result has been a rare insight into the workings of the brain (not the mind!).

Learning about the brain is fascinating, because unlike in the case of mind (which is intangible), in the case of brain – you actually have something to work with. The physical mass of gooey matter between our ears we call the brain. The neurons, the hypothalamus, the neuropeptides and the neural network are some of the labels we have given to an absolutely unexplainable miracle happening inside our heads all the time.

Every emotion has a chemical associated with it (called a peptide) and every time you choose to experience an emotion, the chemicals are produced in your hypothalamus. These chemicals are then released into the bloodstream. So, the happiness-chemical or the sadness-chemical literally explodes into your entire body through the blood-stream and finds its way to different cells. It then docks on a cell and then changes the very nature of the cell, sometimes even the nucleus.

We literally, with chemicals – poison ourselves with anger.
We literally, with chemicals – fill ourselves with fulfillment.

Fascinating, isn’t it?

How does this fit in with making real, measurable changes in our lives?

This is a good place to share another distinction I have made. In learning about the brain and creating real change in life (which is what I am committed to).

It is very interesting, it can give you amazing insights – but it is no more necessary to create changes in real life than it is to understand the intricate workings of the internal combustion engine to drive a car or even know how exactly a microprocessor works to use the computer more effectively.

Of course it would help, but it is not necessary.

While studying hardware is good for a deeper understanding and quenching our thirst for knowledge, it is surely more important to know your operating system and how it works.

Which is why for someone like me, who hopes to create effective results in life – better relationships, fulfillment, satisfaction and passion – study of the brain must remain secondary to the study of the mind.

If only it were not so damn fascinating!!

Choosing Habits – The 30 Day Trial

I discovered this fantastic site http://www.stevepavlina.com/index.htm

Steve Pavlina is a writer, speaker, entrepreneur, games-programmer. He is inspiring!

A lot of his posts are fantastic – addressing the most basic facets of self development, which are sometimes skirted by other authors for a more esoteric and less practical (not to mention preachy) approach.

His post on doing a trial for 30 days of a new habit that you might want to adopt motivated me to adopt it.

So, I will be trying these on for the next 30 days (from 3rd April to 3rd May) – On 3rd May I will decide whether I want to keep these.

Waking up at Seven : I wake up late. That is because I sleep really late. I somehow am most creative when the world goes to sleep and I can feel the eerie quietness beyond my window. However, I would like to be an early riser. I can do it really, I already do it in case there is some work that has to be done early in the morning. So, I will be waking up at seven everyday for the next 30 days – weekends included. I will be using this strategy, again suggested by Steve.

Vegetarianism: I have wanted to do this for a long time, but just didn’t get around to doing it, because I always thought of turning a vegetarian for life – and that seemed too big a commitment to make. However, I could easily turn a vegetarian for 30 days. Lets see if I feel like extending the commitment on 3rd May.

25 Minute Workout – I do take care of my body, going swimming is my favorite – but it has to be painstakingly decided in advance and followed through. So, a 25 minute workout everyday is in order – and should be easy if I am especially waking up early.

Blog Everyday – I created this Blog a looong time ago. However, I have posted only a handful number of times. I would like to post more. Hence – one post everyday for the next 30 days. That is probably a greater number of posts than already existing. Sounds cool.

Well, that is about it! I am excited about this new experiment and would share the results in the forthcoming posts!

May the best happen!