Posted in Being Someone, Questions

“And so, I’ve got nothing to do”

So, what happened is, that mankind kept inventing to a point when ploughs were replaced by desktops, horses were replaced by automobiles, cattle was replaced by the milkman and story-telling was replaced by WWF boxing. But that wasn’t enough for man, so he settled with the stakes a notch higher. Today, everything is smart. We have automatic cars, a smart phones, IPad is ‘smart’ for a desktop, then we have dry milk which has altogether replaced the institution of a ‘milkman’. Whereas, boxing, has been replaced by facebook.
In all these very smart times, I wonder if man has outsmarted himself? Especially, when all a man does in a day is; coaxing buttons of remote-controls, keyboards, phones, ATMs, etc. and turning the steering wheel. Texting, heating the food in microwave, facebooking, watching ‘Two and a Half Men’ on Starworld- life should be easier for mankind. Man should have nothing to complain about. Still, everyone complains about how everything is ‘complicated’. About all the stress, the depressions, the insane outbursts of frustration. I again wonder, if man has outsmarted himself?
With a life that is termed to be ‘easier’ than that of our predecessors, we have so much of time in our hands. Man did, outsmart himself. He created so many luxuries, that he is left with little to do. With all the time that is saved, what is man doing today to kill his free time. So man, once again, did it again. To kill the time that he spent centuries saving, he invented facebook and Hollywood. Mobile phones, that as they put it, ‘carries the whole world’ within them. Everything invented today, which is smarter than it was before, helps man to while away the time, which should never have been whiled away.
My brother, who is thirteen, has a habit of coming to me on weekends and asking me, “what should I do?” As a child, I never remember asking my mother that. I had so much to do. When twenty years ago, were also smarter times, I had ways of spending my free time. Playing outside, reading, journaling, sketching, or listening to my grandmother’s bed-time stories. I remember moments from long ago, when I used to just sit in our garden, and did nothing. When I do that today, my folks get worried, because I’m not busy. They think something is terribly wrong. I don’t blame them, their generation was also taught to be super busy all the time.
What I’m trying to say here is, is it important to do something all the time? Is that the purpose of mankind? Never be at rest, so that after we’re dead, the epitaph on our headstones reads, ‘rest in peace’. Why can’t mankind learn the basic requirement to be human is to ‘be’? And that too during our life, not after we’re done with it. We needn’t be doing something or trying to be somebody all the time. If that was the case, man of today wouldn’t be so confused to an extent that he thought it best to go back to basics. Praying, meditation, ‘blogging’ (smart form for journaling), organic food versus lab food, anonymous group discussions where strangers tell each other personal stories, healing clubs, and therapists.
Man has indeed, outsmarted himself, for today he goes around saying, “and so, I’ve got nothing to do.”

Posted in Being Someone

Sleeping stones

Have you ever thought of how much time one wastes sleeping? Out of twenty four hours in a day, a person spends 8 hours sleeping. Meaning by that that one third of our lives is spent dreaming away into nothingness.

Once, a very wise man confided a big secret in me. He said that in a day we spend eight hours sleeping, the other eight hours working, the remaining eight hours determine our merit; what is to become of us in our lives. I have something to add to this logic. I believe that, if we could somehow control our sleeping patterns and sleep less, and instead use that time doing something else more useful and productive, we could easily achieve ‘success’ early in life.

If I was to ask you, as to what you did in the eight hours when you were not working nor were you sleeping, what would your answer be? For most, the rushed on answer would be, ‘television’. But then again, one can watch just so much of television. Eating could be another answer. That I won’t forfeit, as I am too a great fan of keeping the tummy wealthy and fine. For ladies, it could be household chores, for men it could be outdoor chores. Still, one has to wonder, do we really do all that in the twenty-four hours that we get?

Supposing if we do all that in the time slot we get, do we really do what is more important and not urgent? I would say taking up extra hobbies is a good option. Reading, or writing or researching would be a good beginner for the lazy amongst us. At least, if we could cut down on our sleep, we could do a lot more in a day than we could ever imagine. After all, night is a time when everyone sleeps, that means you could do all that you want to, easily without disturbance. Painting or the arts is a good choice too here.

The thing is that when we take up a hobby which we might pursue in the middle of the night, we are putting our extra bit in it. There is a pure effort and sweating hard work put into it, and as the saying goes, nothing equals hard work. And this is where our matter and metal is tested. This is how we come to know what stuff we are made of. And thus we learn, that how could we possibly be put to use. That is how we learn that we are made of important and durable matter. And thus, our quality and strength is tested, when you know that you can sleep less and work more.

So my advice to you is, test your matter and learn what stuff you are made of. Don’t be a sleeping stone, be a durable metal, that you may know your strength and thus be able to hit things in life instead of them hitting you.

Posted in Being Someone

Coelho’s Personal Legend

“The closer you get to your dream, the more your Personal Legend becomes your real reason for living.” The Alchemist

“When you want something, the whole Universe conspires to help you realise your desire.” The Alchemist

“Only one thing makes a dream impossible: the fear of failure.” The Alchemist

“Love will never separate a man from his Personal Legend.” The Alchemist

“It is precisely the possibility of realising a dream that makes life interesting.” The Alchemist

“The first indication that we are killing our dreams is lack of time. The second indication that our dreams are dead is certainty. The third indication that our dreams are dead is peace.” The Pilgrimage    

We have all been pre-schooled to think that legends are only to be found in books and fairy tales. Rustum and Sohrab, King Arthur, Robin Hood are all examples of legends found in print. What should be new to us is that every man has a personal legend.

Personal legend is like taking oneself as a creator and then outlining our own dreams and finally culminating them to a reality. Realising a dream into a reality, or otherwise, simply put, chasing them (dreams) is the truth of a personal legend. When man understands himself, and has one of those ‘eureka’ moments where all infinity dawns on him; that is the point when he learns that he has a path to unfold and follow.

Making a legend out of oneself is not unlike being a protagonist in a tale. It is like being in a reverie and then taking control. There comes a time in life when you put life on hold, and let it wait on you. You take the time to pause and wonder. Is this what you really want out of your life? Is where you are right now take you to conquering your dreams?

When you start having thoughts like that, then that is the time when you take the first step in satisfying your urge to live your personal legend.

Paulo Coelho, a Brazilian writer talks of personal legend in his book ‘The Alchemist’ and then later trails that nerve down in several of his other books. Coelho writes fiction books that hint on the considerable path of philosophy.

According to Coelho, people tend not to pursue their dreams of fear that they don’t deserve them or that they would suffer utter doom if they did. They anticipate that if they follow their dream path, people around them would be hurt or be unforgiving. According to Coelho, realising your personal legend means living your life just the way you want to without being afraid to exist and breathe. It is the path of stones and flowers that would lead you ultimately to profound happiness.

The Brazilian writer goes on to believe that as children each one of us knows what our personal legend is. But as we grow up, the atypical, mindless and logical thinking makes us believe that we no longer can attain what we wanted as kids. Children in their innocence are not accustomed to thinking like adults do. They are free souls in search of the impossible. In fact, adolescents don’t have have the word, ‘never’ in their dictionaries. They ‘believe’ and then they ‘do’. As for adults, they ‘think’ and then ‘quit’ before even taking a start to destiny.

An individual’s personal legend is him working towards achieving his dream. It goes without saying that the path that leads to realising the ultimate dream is not an easy one to take. One will suffer constantly, but it’s the enthusiasm that will drive one to his goal. It’s this enthusiasm that will make him overlook the obstacles and reach out to his objective.

If you want to live your personal legend, you need to let go of shackles of logical pre-schooling, and fear, and fly.

Posted in Being Someone

Not Forgiven, Never Forgotten

Bad things happen to us all the time. People turn on us, friends leave us, there are bitter arguments, a theft of a smile, a broken heart, a catastrophe. With shattered hopes, some genius always pips in to tell us, “hey, just forgive and forget”.  These three words are like a log in our dictionaries. The way people do not frequently hesitate to reveal these words of wisdom to us, we never fail to do the opposite with them. The question however is, do we really move on? Or are these words just a solace for a hurting heart?

Going deep into the half told truth of forgive and forget, we underestimate the amount of energy required to do the same; moving on. When we are hurting, the last thing we want to do is forgive the culprit and then to top it all forget about the whole episode. It’s easy said than done. And that too is an understatement.

Forgiving means we let go of the grudge we have for the antagonist. We tell ourselves lies like ‘it was never meant to be’, ‘it was for the best’, ‘I was the fool’, etc. To forgive means that we in the real sense move on with our lives, and tell ourselves that ‘what happened, happened’ and ‘there is nothing we could have done about it’. It’s almost like having a change of the heart and finally letting go of the bitter memories. The point here is, is it that simple? Or are we just fooling ourselves?

The truth is, forgiving isn’t easy. Forgiving someone completely means overcoming the bigness of the small word, ‘ego’, and overlooking it so as to see the bigger picture.  It requires a lot of conscious effort on the part of the individual. And when I say effort, I really mean there is need of a great deal of hard work. Forgiving someone is like having to go through a cleansing act of the mind, body and the soul. It is to purge oneself of the bitterness and embrace virtuousness, and be the ‘bigger man’. If you have ever forgiven someone you would know what I am talking about here. If you haven’t, let it be a guideline.

The second step towards being an adult is to learn to forget. This too isn’t easy. In fact, for the record, it is even more a difficult task than the one that involves forgiving. To forget a bad is like visualizing something bitter never happened. It is like blotching a part of our memory lane and imagining all good is ‘out there’. It’s a self belief that bad things perhaps happen for a reason, and the only reason is for us to learn from it. And once we’ve learnt that we can move on, by forgetting the incident, and adding to our experience, we are then ready to take the next step in our lives.

‘Not forgiven, never forgotten’ is how most of us live our lives. You should know one thing though, that by working things this way, you are holding on to a lot of negative energy which is not only taxing but is also quite exhausting. It is a burden that you do not or are unwilling to let go off. Try this mantra for a change, ‘always forgive, forever forget’. By using this as a life time lesson, you will see how new avenues will open for you on the road to sovereignty and exaltedness. You will learn that carrying excess baggage of hate and forebodings is up to no good, and is never rewarding. Most importantly, how will you get on with life if you hold on to petty skirmishes? The road to happiness is not met by carrying grudges and hate.  It is only rewarding if you are willing to let go of the conscious, negative weights and are prepared to learn to forgive and forget.

Posted in Being Someone

Egoless Learning

I read a simple advice long time ago, it said “don’t use the small word, ‘ego’.”

In our lives, we are put before countless situations and phases when we need to learn something. It’s like life teaching us lessons through experiences. And for each one of us, this happens, as we tend to move ahead with each passing day. We trip and fall flat on our faces, we learn that we were wrong, we dust ourselves and tread again ahead in life.

This whole trial is God’s way to teach us things, so that one day we are ready to achieve our personal legend. However, for some of us, this becomes impossible. All that seems to be going on is, is us falling over and over again on our faces. Time and time again, this is repeated. Same kind of things seem to go wrong and we seem to be stuck in a loop hole in a dimension of the ghastly repeatable.

If this is how it is for you, you should know one thing. The only reason you are stuck in the dimension of the terrible repeatable is because you are not learning to skip the wire. The lesson to be learnt is not being learnt. When that happens, the Lord makes similar situations for us, so that we may learn.

One thing that I have noticed in my experience is, that when it comes to learning a life’s lesson, the only thing that hinders is, the very small word, ‘ego’.

Now looking at ego objectively, it is a tiny izaat of the ‘I’. It is the ‘me’ that is stopping the learning from taking place. Man refuses to learn from mistakes, when he finds the ‘I’ too big to be able to look beyond it. For then the only thing left standing between man and his personal legend is his ego. This means that man is the obstacle to his own success. And this he can put a stop to, provided he learns to grow out of his ego.

You might have noticed people around you who tend to float through their life as if they had done this all eternity. To them a problem is not a blanket of snakes but an opportunity to grow and learn from and grow in return to their way of greatness. These people, have little use of the tiny word, ego. For them nothing is too small for them. Everything is big enough and capable of giving value. For them the ‘I’ is too small and the energy that flows through life systems is too great. To them learning is a way of growing, and this they do to the last of their breath. These sorts of people tend to evolve continuously. They learn and grow, then they learn some more and then grow too.

The other category of people, have a lot of themselves to handle. They see so much of themselves that they have a hard time overcoming theirs and them. The bigger ego they have, the more susceptible they are to not learning from life. Because they think so highly of themselves they tend to overlook the learning and take a problem as just that, a problem. They see no opportunity to learn from. Hence at every rough turn in their lives, they fret and fumble and lose miserably at growing up.  They forget that while their bodies need nutrition to grow, their self needs the tight bends to mature. Hence they lose at all odds and never grow thanks to their ego-self centers.

So be a greater and a bigger person by losing the ego and learning, rather than being small and holding on to your big egos and hence not learning from the well of life.

Posted in Being Someone

Great Expectations

How many times in life do we have to adjust our expectations? I know for one, that I had to change my bar of adjustability several times before I got anywhere in life. The same, probably applies to you too.

What I don’t understand is, do we expect too much out of life? Or is it our life that seems to let us down all the time. Some can argue that it’s faith that runs its course the way it mysteriously does and thus neglects us to become a minor in every situation. Others can argue that it is just us who let ourselves be degraded each time life pokes its witty nose out of the blue.

I believe that it is neither. It’s not ‘fate’, nor is it ‘us’, and neither it is our ‘life’ that plays around the hocus pocus. But instead, it’s just the situation at hand that does the trick and makes us see the magic of smoke and mirrors. For instance, we invest in some great gig, and we expect to do the best and get the most out of that investment, but later we learn that things didn’t go as expected and instead of profit we had to pay up with loss. In this case, some might blame fate to do its bidding, but on the other hand, perhaps the investors involved didn’t do as good and thus the investment fell through. Thus, down came our hopes and our eagerness for success and once again we are left with great expectations ending into nothing least than a great disappointment.

If fate was to do its calling, everything would be pre-destined. Our lives, our futures and most importantly; our present. This way, we would never give a damn about what we did or wonder how things would turn out to be. We would at all times be mesmerized by the appalling nature of fate and therefore wouldn’t nudge just a wee bit to give ‘struggle’ a winning chance. All hard work would go out the window because we thought that as everything is pre-planned in the book of our Lord, hence we needn’t do much to change its course.

As for ‘us’, being humans we never like to take the blame for anything. Call it a second instinct. That was the way we were born. So when things spiral downward, we just tend to point the finger the other way and keep our eyes closed so that we wouldn’t have to see that the mess we created. I think that to some extent we are always to blame. Wether we like to believe it or not, but at some level of our proceedings, it is our hand that is doing the ‘doing’. So, to some extent, whatever expectations we have from others and those that we have for ourselves, are executed and monitored by us.

So we come down to the million dollar question. Why do our great expectations more than often tend to become some of the biggest disappointments of the era? Ruling out fate to begin with, I’d say that failures of our expectations into total redemption are because we on our own together with situational interference are the key to our dashed hoped and dreams. Not blaming fate, we tend to etch out our own future and the present, and it is not the hand of some foreign deity that does the work, but it is our own hand combined with logistics that does the ticking and the moulding.

Posted in Being Someone

Hard Times

Bad times are as certain to come as death and taxes. Each one of us goes through a spiraling experience of good and bad moments and phases in our lives. There are times when we are happy and when everything seems to be a cherry on a strawberry cream cake. These are times when we are at our best and the world appears to be far beneath us. We are on the zenith of our experience and all goes too well to be true. Everything favors us and it appears that we have digested a bit of the lucky potion that Harry Potter had. Then there are other times when one in at the nadir. All is bad. Everything tastes sour. Everything you touch is dust. When your most priciest possessions are lost, and you are left with very little hope for goodness. When all that ever happens is that things go wrong. And if life was not bad enough, it just gets worse.

When you are at such a road of haplessness, you feel that life, and the forces that be are not in your favor.  That is when most of us break up from within, and move to paths and make choices that are not very clear to begin with. We feel that we have zero control over life, and so we panic and start doing things that even our shadow would disown us for having done. These are bad times. And for once, I would like to say that no schooling or college teaches us to get past such a time. Literature is read and math problems solved, no one ever dared to teach a man how to get through bad patches in life. For this reason, we do what we think is a best course to take up.  Some of us opt for drugs, others for partying, the mellow drudge into depression, the loud have anger management issues, the kiddish involve in crime, while the humble, just give up.

The thing is that indulging in all of these mentioned malaises is not a positive way to deal with hard times. What is important is that the sight should keep in view the beacon while adrift on the sea. Tumults and waves are a part of life. Whether your daughter is getting married, or your son is to enroll in a foreign university and you do not have the sufficient funds nor management to handle the stress, whether you have an exam coming up or you have a crappy job, your boss gives you a hard time, or your child is being difficult; the important thing is to stay in focus. The best thing about time is that it never stays the same. Good moments bleed into sad ones, and unhappy hours bleed into blessed laughter. That is all a part of life. This is the way the arrangement has been from the beginning of time, and so this shall stay to pass.

Keeping your head in hard times is as essential as keeping your sanity and not getting lost into a maze of mental mayhem. Any situation should not overpower one into confusion and retaliation. Keeping your cool is imperative on all accords, for what will you do if you can not manage your mental capabilities? When coping becomes difficult and fleeing easier, you should know that now is the time that you need to hold on to dear endurance more than ever. The good news is that there are plenty of positive ways in which you can deal with stress and depression. In fact, our school teachers never taught us to live fighting demons, there are many thinkers who have advised on the same. My humble advise to you would be that if you are in that phase of your life when everything is overwhelming, sit back and do the following.

Posted in Being Someone

In Pursuit of Happiness

For most of us happiness is a state of achievement through luck or because of some great event. We feel that we can only be happy ‘if I had a BMW or a CK wrist watch.’ Consider this as a free piece of advice, that the thought ‘I will be happy if …’ is the biggest lie ever told to self.

Happiness, apart from being a noun is a state of being, more like a decision to be made. A person with no shelter and one meal a day can be happy as long as he decides to be so. A king can be unhappy with all his palaces and richness. The difference is that the poor man took a mental initiative, to stay happy, ‘no matter what’.

Most of our lives we wait for good things to happen to us that will make us happy momentarily. This again is another flaw in the frame of thought. Happiness is not momentary. It is a part of a person’s nature. So ‘no matter-‘ or our ”what ifs-‘ are the general blockages to our minds. These too are self created.

There is another thing to it too. You can only give happiness if you yourself are happy. It should be noted however that, happiness is not the same as contentment. Man after all was never given the gift of contentment. But he has the gift of free will, which can allow him to be happy.

You might be under going an open heart surgery but still you could be happy, not because you are sure you will live through it, although positive thinking has its advantages, but it is not the only thing contributing to happiness.

Having a positive attitude takes you as far as the road goes, meaning till the next mountain in your life. But happiness is addictive, it is like a parasite feeding off the main tree, but in this case the parasite and tree both depend on each other. These are foundations for one another.

In pursuit of our happiness we make our lives difficult. We chase dreams and complicated luxuries. We forget however, that the exuberances may add a trifle to our life, again momentarily, but it will not necessarily make us happy.

Happiness can be found in simple things too. For example, having a routinely family dinner can be a source of great pleasure, playing with your grandchildren could be fun, or simply reading a book could exercise your laughing lines.

Simplicity can be a root to happiness. Greed therefore would become its enemy. For if you are chasing paper money 24/7, it will make you very stressful and hardly bring you close to happiness, because a stressful life will never see the glimpse of happiness.

Indulging in simple pleasures can bring happiness to life. Eating golgappas, or chatting with an old friend too could bring up the bar of happiness.

Still, having said that happiness is not a momentary experience, it’s more of a way of life, a secondary developed personality trait. It is when you put down your foot to life and say, ‘I will be happy’. And having said thus, the spark of positive attitude will take us to this different country which knows no fear of the world.

So, in the end you could be bankrupt and not be too stressed about it, not because it isn’t a big deal, hell, you’ve lost everything you worked for, but then that is where the problems begin. We spend more time building a world of fake colours around us that we forget to work on our internal selves and enjoy those colours.

For that reason, my advice to you would be if you want to make the decision of staying happy, you need to learn to keep your internal equilibrium in check. That equilibrium becomes your happy weather which you carry along with you at all times. A drop of good humour also helps see the lighter side of life, and hence keep you happy.

I believe that the word ‘happiness’ is under described. Everyone talks about it. But you will hardly find anyone who might actually be it, or it should be said, someone who is living the ultimate dream.

Talking about dreams, the American dream of being rich and famous is an oldie. What this dream lacks, is a vision and a decision to be happy. People forget that the higher they rise in the world the more stress they will feel and the unhappier they will be.

The only ingredient in happiness is one thing and that is your mind set. Everywhere around there is so much of desolation that even the witty TV programs these days can not drop out the grave criticism in them.

We need to tune our minds to the happy-o-meter. And then daily we should measure it. If you can keep up the average 75% of happiness in your tread, you would have done a great job.

Once the decision is made you will notice that the bare necessities are enough to channel positive thinking and attitude. Also, do not mistake me. When making the decision to be happy becomes a reverting milestone in your life, it would not mean that you would be shirking off your responsibilities, nor does it mean that there will be zero worrying spells. In actuality what is important is not why you fell, but how you got up. Like in literature a line goes, ‘go mad as often as you feel, but never faint.’

Happiness could have been a thought, but thoughts have a tendency to change. For that reason I believe to be happy and to stay happy, one needs a natural inkling of the brighter side of the moon. If happiness was achieved at the price of a summer yatch or a diamond ring, then all the famous and rich celebrities wouldn’t be having meltdowns every few weeks.

At the same time, being a decision making business, happiness is also a pursuit. It is a constant battle between stress and worries as enemies and this is a constant struggle. By struggle I mean happiness is not found as manosalwa in the form of a plate of fruit, but it needs to be fought for and won over.

It should be understood by those who wish to stay happy, that it is these constant battles between sorrows and malaise, that happiness is to be beseeched right from under the clawy paw of the malicious lion.

But above all, the most important thing that remains is that when the decision is made one should be ready to fight off any threat to the wellbeing. After all, your bucket of happiness will be glared at and envied. People will try to pry and will do their best to tip it over. But as long as you are armored in a knightly hue, no one can make you miserable without your own consent.

Struggles too will become as a second nature and you will shrug off any vileness that threatens your will to be happy. So, live, and survive to stay happy.

Posted in Being Someone

Learning and Unlearning

Learning is a difficult procedure. It involves not only embarking on new horizons but also testing ourselves at several fronts. What we fail to understand however, is that with learning comes the process of unlearning.

Learning we know of. It happens when we are trying to learn a new language, a new mood, a self control procedure, how to walk with a correct posture, how to deal with a certain cunning person, and how to be a diplomat and not give nor share information. Learning is a continuous process. It starts from cradle to grave. But what is important is that do we actually learn from our experiences or do we pass them by waving excitedly?

I once read in a book titled ‘If life is a game, these are the rules’ by Dr. Chérie Carter-Scott that said if we keep facing the problem over and over again in our lives that means we have not learnt from that experience. A problem does not reoccur or we do not need to face the same issue if it has been handled wisely and if we had the courage to learn from it. Yes, it’s true. Learning requires courage. For it is only after a learning experience that we understand how to deal with a situation or a person in an appropriate manner in the coming future.

However, learning has a double sided process that goes along with it. This is called ‘unlearning’. This too is very important. This process can be defined as a way to unlearn things that have already been programmed in us from childhood due to race, caste, sect or family. In ‘Your Sacred Self’ by Dr. Wyne W. Dyer, the author mentions this unlearning process in a great detail. According to Dyer, it is this unlearning process that helps us learn more about the world around us and even more importantly, about ourselves. For instance, if we have been conditioned by society to look down upon a certain caste, but we unlearn this through experience that it is incorrect to do so, is called unlearning.

On the fact sheet, it should be known though that as learning may be difficult, unlearning is even more so. I say this because, to un-condition what had been engraved for generations in the  minds of our people is even more difficult, as then again that unlearnt lesson will be passed on to the next generations as it is. Unlearning is a process that requires a lot of self motivation, and more importantly, it requires an insight along with quality self-awareness.

Both ways; learning or unlearning, are a grave matter. Throughout our lives we will be presented with situations where either we would have to unlearn something or learn something new. The question however is, do you have the courage to do what is needed at that time? Or will you succumb to natural flow and not be a moulded like a rigid stone?

Posted in Being Someone

Making Lemonade

No one teaches the one on one on stress, like Promod Batra in his book ‘Simple ways to Manage Stress’. One word on the buzz these days is ‘stress’. A lot of people we know are falling victims to it. The end result, diabetes, ulcers, heart conditions, psychiatric problems, depression, and the list goes on. What we do not hear is however, the cure for stress.

Batra in his book, says that stress is like embers. They can be controlled to be harmless embers, or we can convert them in to a huge fire. Life is like a series of choices and how we manage stress is one of the choices. One can attain the attitude that ‘I will do my best, and then to hell with it,’ or worry endlessly as our life unwounds daily.

Most stress is caused by the absence of ideas on how to manage them. One simple way is to think of ways to deal with the issue, then ask questions regarding it so that it is thought over, and finally once the solution is heeded, act on it! One formula to go with it is the MISER concept, where the key to the letters is; ‘Merging problems’, Improving solutions’, ‘Simplifying ways’, ‘Eliminating stressful ways’ and ‘Reducing stress’.

Indulging in simple pleasures rather than choosing luxurious ways to keep one ‘happy’ is another tip coming from Batra. Watching the way one thinks is also a key factor here. Thinking positive thoughts rather than brooding over negative ones lessens stress by great degrees. Here the BIBO and the GIGO term is employed. Which stands for ‘Bad ideas In and Bad ideas Out’ and ‘Good ideas In and Good ideas Out’. Both should be used simultaneously.

A person should always be ready for being fired says Promod Batra. According to him, you should not fall in love with your company, remember, you can always fire it, and in case the opposite happens you should have a ready safety net ensured to help slacken the fall.

Before getting the thought of changing those around you, you should learn to change yourself according to people. After all, you can not change your father, your mother, your wife or kids, not even your boss, so it is best that in order to stay stress free, you should change yourself first.

Thinking and planning before hand of tasks and events decreases stress by mounds. Personal management is the goal here. Once the list is made, mental or proper, one should get down to it in no time. Time management also comes along in the kit. In order to find out how to manage your time well so that everything gets done by schedule you need to find out where the time is being wasted. Then you shift your minutes from the waste bin to your table and use them effectively.

Next in line is the churning comparison we do all the time. The secret to that is-, ‘don’t do it’. The only thing you should be comparing is yourself with your potential and learn to understand that this varies from man to man.

Anger management is another story. You should realize that every ten minutes you spend being angry, you lose 600 seconds of happiness. Wisdom lies in not reacting to impulse, and this is a great habit when it comes down to reducing stress.

Not all of us can be presidents of states or the director generals of multinational companies. So learn to do small small things greatly. You can make heroes and heroines out of your children. Next in line is the moral fruit. Tell the truth even if it tolls. At least you will be less stressed.

One should learn where to set the bar for themselves. This is because needs can be met but greeds never. For that reason, do not make best the enemy of better. Live with the second or even third best positions and options.

Learning to live with the criticism of those around you is another thing Batra talks about in his book. According to him, failure just means that you need to try harder, and the criticism you face should be dealt with intelligently, so that you learn from your mistakes.

One should learn to say ‘sorry’ and ‘thank you’. This helps in keeping the number of enemies down and the friends’ list going. But in both cases mean what you say. Learning to say ‘no’ and accept ‘no’ is also very important. Every time you skip a ‘no’, you become stressful.

Another rule for life is KFP and BFP. This is my personal favourite. These stand for kee farak painda and bahut farak painda. Between these two, the stressless ratio is 90:10. If one can maintain this and keep telling oneself, KFP, one can easily be stripped off stress altogether in daily life. 

Richess in the heart comes from the mind. Therefore in order to stay rich at heart learn to give. Usually people follow the give and take rule, but that puts an end to the transaction. In order to keep to the higher road of wisdom, you should use this formula instead; ‘give and take and give’.

According to Martin Luther King, ‘forgiveness is not an occasional act; it is a permanent attitude.’ Hence make forgiveness your attitude. Learn to forgive and forget and more importantly, ‘move on’ after forgiveness.

Good friends who can give good advice should be nurtured as they are natural witnesses to your life. Their advice should be heeded, hence make your house a gathering place of the wise. Staying busy is another way to stay relieved off stress. By ‘trying’ and ‘doing’ one can be stress free.

Goals are important. They help you to stay focused in life. After all, if you reach for the stars, you may not quite get one, but you won’t come up with a handful of mud either. Having said that Batra, goes on to dedicate a whole chapter on learning to accept some dust in your life. Best should not be the enemy of better. One should accept second and third best in B and C categories.

Learning to laugh is the next best thing when it comes to killing stress. Therefore, read funny books, meet funny people, watch funny films, and hear good jokes. Laughter is to stress what water is to fire.

According to Batra, if one wants to be happy for a lifetime, they should love what they do for a living. Everything else is like flowers on the wayside. Keeping a healthy reading habit keeps one from reinventing the wheel. Books contain wisdom learnt ages ago, passed down from generation to generation. So why spend six years to learn through mistakes that which can be learnt from a book within six minutes?

Last but not least, the parting words of Promod Batra are to maintain silence in face of hostility. He says, silence is golden, silence is stressproof, silence is nirvana. Self control for one minute saves a thousand stressful minutes.

So when life throws lemons at you and not candy floss nor ice-cream, learn to make lemonade out of the lemons and sell it like crazy. Be stressfree and stay happy.