“The more you know yourself, the more patience you have for what you see in others”—Erik Erikson
I often wonder why people find faults with others when their every action is flawed. I realized over a period of time that these people have long forgotten to live their life consciously or they had never lived consciously. These are those people who never have found themselves and discovered their true potential, because if they did they wouldn’t have time to condemn others. The moment I came across this bitter truth, I started to discover more of myself rather than thinking about those people whose words or actions have hurt me. I realized the hard way that true journey or true discovery is self-discovery. Now, I have stopped thinking about my detractors or fault finders rather I take their feedback seriously or learn a lesson or two from them and move on. They have not changed, but my view of them have changed drastically. Sometimes, life teaches small lessons in an unpredictable manner and the wisdom comes to you when you are trying to teach others. I discovered myself and the true purpose of my life when I was thinking about changing the behavior of others. After discovering myself, I became more patient with my detractors.
“Know yourself to improve yourself”—Auguste Comte
“Positive anything is better than negative nothing”— Elbert Hubbard
We all are surrounded by some negative thoughts or people with negative attitude at some point in life. The more you hang out with these negative people, the more negative thoughts you are going to nurture. In fact, negative thoughts are so powerful that they drain out the entire energy from your mind and body. The result is no good either. You are not at peace with yourself and neither with others around you. The only thing that you can do to change this situation is constantly force yourself to think positive thoughts or say some kind words so that your mind is totally free from any kind of pollution caused by negative thoughts. Then and only then, you can expect to see a change or a shift in the attitude. Negative thoughts grow faster, while it takes time to nurture positive thoughts. To kill negative thoughts, I just take a walk while enjoying the beauty of nature or sometimes I spend time alone to get to know real me beneath this worldly mask. All negative thoughts vanish, when you find your true self and you become one with nature.
“Positive thinking will let you do everything better than negative thinking will”—Zig Ziglar
“Calm mind brings inner strength and self-confidence, so that’s very important for good health”— Dalai Lama
With the endless responsibilities and hectic lifestyle, the mind of an average person has become restless and full of so many thoughts, that it is almost impossible to get anything worthwhile accomplished. Most of us have cluttered our minds with so many thoughts and ideas that we do not get the results we want. In other words, we are living our lives in a fast lane and do not know when to stop. Therefore, our main aim should be to focus on few goals and take them to finishing line before we start to set new goals. In order to do that, we need to calm down and let few thoughts enter our mind. The mind that is calm and has few powerful thoughts is like a clean mirror in which you can see your reflection clearly. Clear focus and calm mind is a true manifestation of spirituality and wisdom.
“The pursuit, even of the best things, ought to be calm and tranquil”—Marcus Tullius Cicero
“You can’t live someone else’s expectations in life. It’s a recipe for disaster”—Bear Grylls
It is easier to set expectations for others whether they are your children or colleagues. But, the most important lesson that I have learnt in my life is that I feel happy truly blessed when I set high expectations from myself. The reason is that you feel defeated when your expectations are not met by others. In fact, we all fail to enjoy the true pleasures of life because someone or the other has not fulfilled our wishes. But the truth is otherwise. The source of happiness lies within you and no one can make you unhappy, if you do not want to. Similarly, trying to meet the expectations set by others is equally disastrous. Hence, you should be setting expectations for yourself before others do. All too often, we try to please others and somewhere sacrifice our own dreams in order to fulfill their dreams and wishes. Sometimes, we are trapped by guilt when we fail to meet others expectations. Therefore, the thumb rule of a happy and fulfilled life is to set high expectations from self and strive for fulfilling those expectations.
“I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations and you’re not in this world to live up to mine”—Bruce Lee
“To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you”—Lewis B. Smedes
All too often, we brood over our past and harbor some bitter feelings. In that we forget to savor the beauty of present moment which comes and goes quietly. I have been in that situation in the past, where I had failed to live the magical moments, just because I was hurt by actions or words of someone. I should say, I believed that their words and actions had hurt me and I have been holding it against them. The main reason for that was I was weak and felt victimized at that point. I did not realize back then that I have to emerge strong and forgive them and move on. Finally, I got enlightened while sitting quietly with myself. Now, I have forgiven each and every one and I have learnt to enjoy the present and take pleasure in even small things that my life has for me. I try not to focus on the wrongdoings of others and strive to become a better person with each passing day. At the end, what counts is what I am giving to the world and if I am happy and fulfilled and choose not to get hurt by the words and actions of others, I can help make this world a better place.
“When you forgive, you in no way change the past – but you sure do change the future”—Bernard Meltzer
“Success does not consist in never making mistakes but in never making the same one a second time”—George Bernard Shaw
Since childhood, I was advised to steer clear from mistakes, because the entire society loves perfect people. So, I realize that I am so imperfect for the societal standards. In due course, I concluded that nobody is perfect. Apparently, there is no clear definition of perfection. As such, there are no perfect beings and the idea of perfection is flawed. We change each and every day and evolve as a new being and with each mistake that we make, we strive for excellence not for perfection. We are human beings and it is common for us to make mistakes, but we should not make the same mistake again. Try to make new mistakes in order to grow financially, physically, emotionally or spiritually. Learn from your past failures and mistakes and venture out rather than brooding over those failures and being dreadful of blunders. Remember if you will try new things, you will fail more often than those people who never dare to try and watch the game from the edges.
“If you’re not making mistakes, then you’re not doing anything. I’m positive that a doer makes mistakes”—John Wooden
“It is easier for a father to have children than for children to have a real father”–Pope John XXIII
Father’s day is here. Happy father’s day is the only message all over the internet. But, I would like to salute all single mothers who have raised their children or are raising them alone and are playing the dual role of a doting father and a loving mother. We all are lucky who have a caring and dedicated father, but there are some people who hardly have any memories of their father. I realize that I need to care for my father and express my gratitude and love not only on Father’s Day, but every day.
“Appreciation is the highest form of prayer, for it acknowledges the presence of good wherever you shine the light of your thankful thoughts”—Alan Cohen
Once my daughter asked me “why do we pray?” I started thinking that we pray to god to thank him for everything that we have got and express our gratitude. Though, I was able to convince my daughter, but I was disturbed by that question. So, I sat in a quiet place and after an hour of deep thinking, I could only think that we really don’t need words or rituals to offer our prayers. Our true feelings can convey our message to the Almighty. There are many ways to do that. By smelling the roses and savoring the beautiful trees around us and appreciating God for such a wonderful creation, we can pray. By celebrating life and living in each moment, we can express our gratitude. By being happy and spreading happiness and making someone happy with our words and deeds we can pray.
“It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart”—Mahatma Gandhi
“Keep love in your heart. A life without it is like a sunless garden when the flowers are dead”—Oscar Wilde.
It is simple to say that you love someone, but to truly love a person is really not that easy. Loving is showing true affection without expecting anything in return. As a mother, when I extend my tender loving care to my children, I expect them to respect me and understand my true feelings. Most of the parents feel that way and want their children to behave in a certain manner and pay heed to their advice. Some of them, do not even trust their children. But, then the meaning of love is lost, because true love is not expecting others to do something for you whether it is taking your advice or loving you back. I feel true love signifies freedom. So, love your children and trust them without questioning their instincts.
“The first duty of love is to listen”—Paul Tillich.
“A ship in port is safe, but that’s not what ships are built for”—Grace Hopper.
Oftentimes, we look for soft options in our life and choose comfort over rigors of life. We do face challenges at times, but we try to limit our challenges and create a boundary wall around our capabilities. In other words, we take solace in our comfort zone and do not take any risk at all. But the comfort zone is the dangerous place to be in. On the other hand, taking risks may involve some troubles in the beginning, but it surely brings out the very best in a person. Therefore, every once in a while, we all need to get out of our comfort zone and fight our battles both within and outside. I am not saying, one should not enjoy his or her life, but getting stuck in the comfort zone is very dangerous especially in the uncertain times. So, go out and challenge your limits and discover your true potential.
“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy”—Martin Luther King, Jr.