Dec 31, 2020

Did I make the most in 2020?

 


When 2020 started, I had put up a status on WhatsApp as “Make the most in 2020”. 

Corona struck the world and made the most of it than anybody else. It is going good even at the end of the year.

Virus instigated the overhauling of our complete lifestyle and day-to-day routine. My family and I brought several changes , which we thought could never happen. From that comfortable routine of office, we were thrown in the black box where nothing was certain. At a time, we were unsure if the grocery would remain available for us.

When the lockdown was announced, I rushed to the nearby vegetable shop and cursed myself at the very moment I entered inside. There was no breathing space, and people were brushing each other in the cash-counter queue. After that eventful visit, I took steam inhalations for 3-4 days to avoid any kind of infection. Uncertainty of everything was killing us. But we held our ground. And we are now entering in 2021. Congratulations to everyone.

 Did I make the most in 2020? Not in every dimension, but I made the most in my writing journey. For a while, the raw manuscript of my novel waited for my action in a folder that slipped down in the list and was not even visible in the ‘Recent Actions’ tab of my cloud. I didn’t open it for long. But WFH gave me that push. I sped up the editing process and launched my first fiction book: Lifeline.

Publishing a book was an ethereal and an unforgettable experience. I have now started thinking to write another one. With my first book, I always had the doubt if I could complete it. Now, I know I can do it and that underlying fear no more exists in my thoughts. It was no less than an adventure to peek inside the publishing industry and to see how things move, and to understand what it takes to be successful. This year marked the tiny step of that success for me. Now my next fear is if I’d be keen to overcome the writer’s block for my next ones, and if lack of monetary gains can demotivate me to publish further. Today, I can say, no, it will not because indirect benefits outweigh any other direct benefits. 

My gratitude to all those who supported me, read my book and visited this blog. It was a dark road, but you supported and enlightened it.

Another milestone I achieved along with my book is I was actively blogging, which was something new after 2011. A bigger accomplishment, and I assure, upcoming years will see more of the activity here. 

Now it is the time for resolution, and why I think it is important. Resolution creates a vision for you. It is like the listing of day’s or weekly office tasks. One can not grow without a vision. Sharing is not necessary, but it clears your though process. Think over this and make a vision, a resolution.

Here are mine:

1) I will appreciate people more than  I did previously.

2) I will be a good listener this year, apart from being a good speaker.  

3) I will invest wisely in the time to come.

4) I will follow my passion


Think over if you made the most in 2020? 

Do take your resolutions. Share it or not is your wish. Be happy and take care of your loved ones.


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Dec 24, 2020

The Social Dilemma

 


No, this is not a review of the Netflix documentary- The Social Dilemma.

This Netflix documentary gives you chills in the spine and wakes you up to the ill-effects of social media on individuals and society. The message from the documentary is loud and clear that some day it will break you and will have much adverse impact on teenagers of this urban world. The intensity with which the effects, on teenagers, are shown is impressive. It is also enlightening to see how a Facebook engine only throws that type of similar data/information which one wants to see. It in-fact is the tool of Persuasion. This documentary thus exposes us to the realities and things that go on behind the scenes of social-networking portals. 

Social Media creates perception about anything and everything. The distorted information appears several times in front of the user and he slowly starts believing it to be true. Further, word of mouth, likes and share buttons affirms its authenticity and thus creates perception of a product, movie, book, person, political party, hotel, place, from somebody who might have never experienced it, or may not have that sense of judgement to give a review for it. This is the power of social media. Today actual power does not lie with the King or the Queen, as was the case in the earlier centuries, but lies with the digital influencers. The power of autocracy which existed in the previous centuries  is taking a back seat, and the power of persuasion is shaping our society and driving us to do certain things specifically.

No doubts, artificial intelligence is the present and future of the world. These algorithms are powerful enough to cause behavioral changes not only of an individual but of the entire society or a nation. People are loosing their judgement of right or wrong, as they constantly rely on validation from their virtual friends who don't know them, who have not seen their struggles and successes, who are not aware what has been done in the backyard. These things, as it stands today, are not in our control, and reducing the screen time is not at all a solution. We all need this digital world and networking portals, don't we?

It has its boons, and we all need those boons to achieve our goals in life. 

In this situation, neutrality is the need of the hour, we need balance to counter the persuasive effects of social media. We need people to have a self-confidence, and a fine sense of judgement of right or wrong. Remember that right or wrong is relative. We need to understand this, and it should be clear to everybody that what these social portals want. Earning money is their only requirement, and they earn when you spend countless hours on their portals. We log in to have connection with friends, to build our network, to grow our business but most of the times the platform wins as they function through algorithms, and we function through our individual brains, a single brain does not stand against such strong ever-evolving algorithms developed by the best minds of the world.

What should we do?

Evolution of our mind, body and overall conscious is the need to control this phenomenon. Strong focus on our goal and purpose can help us achieve it. Below are some actions that will help you and me to have that balance in our life:

1) Self-confidence. Do not rely on virtual validation.

2) Fine sense of judgement of Right or Wrong.

3) Focus on personal goals and development, more than the likes and hits on social media.

4) Remember the purpose of your login today and validate if you have achieved it during log off.

5) Yoga and Meditation will keep you sane and will help you control your urge of social validation.

6) Meet frequently with your friends. (I understand it is difficult today but even zoom calls are ok. Speak with them and share your successes and challenges. You will like it more than the number of likes and shares on social media post.

7) Read books. Do I need to say that, huh?

Be aware that what is at stake if you get manipulated by somebody else. Don’t let that happen to you. Remember the purpose of your life.


Can I ask you one last thing? Can you make somebody smile today?



Also, Read this



Dec 21, 2020

The Blue Phoenix-Book Review




Any woman is only as strong as she chooses to be“, this quote from the book pretty much sums up the entire theme of The Blue Phoenix by Chethana Ramesh. It is the story of many middle-class girls, and talks about their inhibitions, insecurities, and fears of their day-to-day life. It can also be considered a story for all, any gender,  who find themselves too simple in the sophisticated group of people or society.

This is one such story of a plumpy, simple, and confident girl, Neela, who is brought up in a  South-Indian family, and is therefore mired in those traditional values. She works with a marketing agency as a sales executive, but her world changes when this handsome hunk Ashwin, her boss, falls for her. Her happiness knew no bounds as she secretly admired him; like most of us do in our actual lives for such people, but may or may not be fortunate enough to interact with them.

Ashwin, however, is narcissist, and is capable to get any girl on her feet with his good looks, money and influential position in the professional world. For him, it is not more than a proof of his charisma and worth, when Neela increases one more count of his flings. 

The story is set in Bangalore, and progresses with subtle and vivid descriptions of its places; if you have lived in Bangalore, then you should relate to the mentioned places, roadways, parks, temples, markets and what not.  The beauty of this book lies in these vivid descriptions of anything and everything, be it the thoughts of characters, or the surrounding places.  Author has presented Neela’s inner conscious as Devil, which is unique, humorous and intelligent. I also appreciate author’s efforts to think and decide such correlated names of its major characters, Neela and Ashwin, with its theme. You would get it when you read it. 

However, these descriptions up to a certain extent have overshadowed the central plot.  Coming to that, whether Neela, being a middle-class girl, will unite with the narcissist, rich, unempathetic Ashwin, or is there something else in store for her? This book deals with such struggles of an urban middle-class girl, and her traditional south-Indian family. 

On the whole, read the book for its vivid descriptions and elegant narration. 




Dec 14, 2020

How to overcome FEAR?



"Fear stays as long as you let it stay"


Everybody has their own share of fear. It doesn't spare anyone-poor and rich, educated and ignorant, wise and foolish, young and old, all are engulfed with fear in their lives. 

Does it come with birth? 

Do you know how a baby feels when she is born? She feels nothing, looks to other people and takes a cue from them. Happiness and Fear both are elusive to her. She does not wink even in front of an animal; fear of animals is unknown to her. Even a knife doesn’t attract a fearful reaction from her? Then how this fear induces as she grows older? Her parents make her fear of certain things; they want to control her life and avoid her tantrums, in return they make things easy for themselves. Barking of the dog, howling of wolf, meow of cat, of a stranger-uncle, are some instilled fears in the baby. 

Parents think that as kids grow up, become mature, these fears will go away. They are right, they go away only to be replaced by the bigger fears of life. Fear of not getting good grades, of public humiliation, of not looking good, of not winning with friends, of losing best friends, of a punishment in school replaces these fears. They struggle and only struggle with these fears, sometimes win over them and sometimes swept away by them. 

As they grow further, Public humiliation, fewer likes on a social media post, not getting enough importance, not getting a good job, not getting a boyfriend, find their place in people’s lives and stay with them for a long time. Fear only increases with failure and depresses them, consequentially they find a way of life where fear doesn't come face to face with them. They live in their own room of people, don’t come out and remain happy in the life within these borders.

They grow old and the fear of losing money, of succumbing to bad health, of losing their kids, of dying a lonely death take place in their heart. They do everything to avoid this and slowly die and go away with the emotion of fear. 

Some people never experience the emotion of freedom.

This is the life of people who fear, and very few are those who know how to fight with fear. 

Never have they allowed to let it take place in their thoughts and heart, and have always faced it with open arms. They realize the only way to fight these fears is to face them. They do these things again and again till they get the confidence and self belief to fight it. Once obtained, nothing in the world can stop them. It is only a matter of winning over 3-4 fears in their lives, and after that they do not look to fear as fear but something they need to work on and find answers to resolve it. This thinking and self belief is enough for them to fight fears, sorry challenge because they do not see them as fears. 

How can a feared person adopt this way of living? FOLLOW below 4 steps to fight with your fears

1) Face it. If you fear water, then learn swimming, if you fear height, then do parasailing, if you fear public humiliation then let it happen once or twice and it will stop affecting you. 

2) Develop self-belief: Trust your actions, and not anoybody else’s. You can only control your actions and thoughts. Leave other people’s thought to them. Do not fuss over your assumptions. Do not underestimate yourself

3) Know your people: ‘Your People’ are those who love you, and want you to be happy. Know them and only talk with them. Share your fear with them. They will make you overcome them. Everyone in their childhood had faced this prank of being pushed in a tank or a swimming pool by their friends. You need this kind of prank to fight with your fears. Be in touch with such friends; for them it may be a prank, but with that you overcome your fear.

4) Read books/ Watch movies: Watch movies and read books that talk about someone’s bravery. It gives motivation, rejuvenation and enthusiasm in your own life. You always feel good after watching or reading such movies and books.


Life gives you an opportunity to live it in your own terms. Don’t let fear take that freedom away from you. Fight with your FEAR.

 

Dec 1, 2020

The Riverside Man and Other Short Stories- Book Review



The Riverside Man and other short stories is a collection of the author’s experiences of life in the form of eleven heart touching short stories. Each of the story forces you to reflect on society, human behavior and emotions.

About Author

Let us first know our author- Murthy KVVS before we deep dive into the book. Born in Bhadrachalam,Telangana, he is a poet, story-writer, a blogger and a translator. His first book of poem collection “Sparsha” was published in 1990, and his essays and poems were also published in many publications .  He is the one who translated one of my favorite books :The Godfather by Mario Puzo in Telugu, which had a great response from Telugu readers. He is an active blogger, and you can read more about him here

About Book

Good writing or story-telling is an art to entertain the reader as well as convey the message that they will take away with them. I am not that a fan of reading short stories because it is difficult for a writer to go to that detail in the most simplistic way, and then as a reader I end up not relating with it,   but this one is truly amazing and touches the right chord of the reader’s conscious; overall it can be a torch-bearer for the society. 

For me, the prominent message or the powerful story is more important than any other thing in the book, and this one perfectly fits in that space.

The book sheds light on several topics varying from  The Guest Obssessed which teaches us how to deal with monkeys (or animals),  to Dantewada which talks about existence of ghosts or spirits who want to convey something. The story leaves the reader to decide whether it was a ghost or the spirit.   Then,  Polling  Duty which deals with the management of ever-contemporary topic of elections but also talks about the real happiness of people who have a great self-respect. The last one is The Riverside Man that forces you to empathize with Sadhus or Saints who travel for their religion and live an abstained life.

My favorite story: It is hard to say the best one but what kept me thinking for the longest was A boulder in the stream that talks about life’s ups and downs and its impact to the people around that situation. This was very aptly conveyed through a student-teacher relationship.

 

Author takes his inspiration from the works of R. K. Narayan.  I remember reading Malgudi Days many years back and we all know how magically and effortlessly Mr Narayan portrayed his observations of human life. This book also deals with the topic in a similar way, it touches and stays in reader’s heart for a long time.

Do checkout this book  here.


"A penny spent on a good book has an immeasurable worth."


Happy Reading

Nov 28, 2020

What makes your day?



 Last Tuesday, the traffic was not that irritating, and the people were not that insensible as they generally are on my way to home. I was surprised and happy that the drive from office was smooth with no need for sudden brakes, and enjoyed a short drive with my favorite songs. Infact, the entire evening went well.

Later, I reflected about the day and realized that it was not the good  traffic  but my heart was on a rejuvenation mode. I subconsciously ignored the ruckus of the road as I was happy and satisfied at the end of the productive but a hectic day. I didn't have time for lunch but never felt that pang of hunger. It makes you happy when your efforsts yield that desired output. The results of my efforts made that day.

This reflection originated the idea for the post that what are those six things that can make one's day so much so that he or she would do anything on that day if asked for....(ofcourse upto certain limits :) 


Productive work-I have already talked about it. This one tops the list.

Good Book: I should not say the end of the book but a well written section of the book can make your day. Most of the books have that chapter that you connect with and feel happy as you find similarities with your thoughts or life, or if you find something new that you didn't know before. You may not be able to explain that feeling but from inside you becone very happy.

Sporting Activity: If you win something in any competion or in any sport, that feeling of winning gives a new energy in thoughts. It gives the self confidence that you can do anything in this world, and nothing can beat you.

Good Food: Perhaps, sometimes it is true. if you getnto eat the delicious cuisine, you become happy  , no matter how much diet conscious you would be, but it dies fill yp your belly and heart.

Family/Friends time: Yes , if everybody is meeting after a long time. I think this one is due for most of the people because of the COVID time. Spending time with people you like gives you happy moments and makes your day.

Appreciation: If somebody appreciates your work then also  it does give you good moments to cherish and your entire day goes well. If you plan to appreciate someone do that favor in the morning.


Nov 21, 2020

Feeling Low!! Read these books

 We at some point in our lives feel low, demotivated or clueless and try to find out ways to overcome that feeling. 

Below five books can cheer you up.Grab them as per their theme. 


Read 'P.S I Love You' if you are feeling low for the loss of your loved one
It will cheer you up and will let you accept the loss of your loved one. At the same time, it will make you realize the true power of love.

Available in both Paperback and Ebook.



Read 'The Power of Habit' if an addiction is taking control of your life
 “The Power of Habit" by Charles Duhigg would help you to be free from that life- long addiction. It will give you easy ways to practice and you can be free from your addiction if you follow them.

Available in both Paperback and Ebook.



Read "The Secret" if you don't know what to do in your life
 “The Secret" by Rhonda Byrne would give you a sense of strength in your belief. I can't promote this book enough and have read it number of times.

Available in both Paperback and Ebook.



Read "The Design of Everyday Things to feel confident about your perspective of the world
If you feel inferiority complex in the sophisticated world, then this book will help you clear out that clutter of thoughts from your mind and heart. 


Available in both Paperback, Ebook and Audio Book.


Read "Don't Lose Out, Work Out!" if you want to lose weight and live a healthy life.
If you are depressed with your ever increasing weight and nothing is working out for you, then read this book by Rujuta Diwekar. It will change your perspective of a good and a healthy diet. The tips are actually workable for anybody if it is followed sincerely.

Available in both Paperback, Ebook and also available in Kindle Unlimited.


Read How to win friends and influence people by Dale Carnegie, and if you are facing a challenge in relationship management

If you don't know how to convince a client or people do not listen to you in official meetings, or nobody takes you seriously then read this book.


Books only give you ideas and motivate you but it will be only you who have to do the job. So read these books ,get on the job and kill that laziness, frustration and demotivation out of your life. 

Happy Reading.


Nov 13, 2020

Book Review Program

 


I would like to introduce this book review program with my fellow authors. The concept is simple

1)Let me know through the contact form in the side-bar if you would like me to review your book on my blog and social platforms?

2) In return I'd appreciate that you review my published book on your social platforms and your blog. 

3) I will give my honest opinion, and will expect the same from you.

4) I also read non-fiction books.

5) It will be ok if you do not want to review my book, but will be happy if you just promote it in your own ways.



Nov 1, 2020

Book Review: Mythological Monologues


Mythological monologues is one of those eclectic books which can be in your bookshelves for a very long time. The readers, from any generation, who would have an interest in mythological characters would find it fascinating to read this one by the Author: Purba Chakraborty. This book is a collection of poetry based on reverend characters of the Mahabharatha and the Ramayana.

One thing I liked about this book is that it not only depicts the celebrated and famous characters of the Mahabharata and the Ramayana but also illustrates the emotions and journey of the unsung heroes of these epics. Ahalya from Ramayana, Chitrangada and Satyavati from Mahabaratha are such examples. 

Although I was aware of most of those characters but it was really fascinating to know about them in the form of a monologue. It depicted the hard work and the research that the author had done to portray these characters in the book. An  apt usage of metaphors and similies helped me understand the true emotion of the characters. In some places, I became happy as sometimes it felt that I was again watching the Netflix series: Dharmakshetra, but that series was only based on Mahabharata characters, and this had from Ramayana as well.

Some of my favourite lines from the book:

In the darkness of absence

The night jasmine silently blooms


And then this one


Leaving behind my Shyam in Vrindavan, 

The melody of His flute in my heart,

 His Divine Name entwined with mine 

Together we will be called 

Radhe Shyam till the end of time.

This is the first poetry book that I have read, and I am happy to realize that the thought in each poem can be the central theme of an independent novel in itself. It shows the deep clarity of thoughts that the author had about the topic.

I recommend this book to all the readers who love mythological tales or want to know more about the respected and not-so-famous characters of these epics.

Oct 26, 2020

My Published Book: Lifeline- Will they ever succeed?

 Here I am with my first novel : Lifeline- Will they ever succeed?


Initial Reviews:

Blurb:

Teesha, an ambitious marketing workaholic, who is still battling the scars of her previous relationship, and Akhil, a consultant and an ace at his job, go through an internal battle, trying to defeat the demons of office politics and boost their respective careers. Will they be able to overcome the challenges that destiny has thrown at them in return for their hard work? Pulled into the drudgery of the brutal corporate world, will they be able to lead happy and content lives? Will love find a way into their lives?

Rati, a single mother and a freelancer, decides to launch a mobile application. Will she be successful in her startup venture and get the social identity she craved for? Will she gain acceptance as a single mother?

Lifeline is a story of love, friendship, money, office politics and startups. It is a story of survival and portrays love, care and respect revolving around myriad relationships and situations that we encounter in our lives.

And a Video Teaser as well:

Available on Amazon.in, Amazon.com and Flipkart.

Let me know if you would like to review this book. I am sure it will entertain you and will introduce you to the interesting relatable characters that you can easily find in your social circle. These three characters, with their quirks and eccentricities are unique in themselves, and you would laugh and cry with them in their good and not-so-good moments.

Happy Reading:)



Oct 16, 2020

Lifeline

 Let me start by asking the question-

What is your lifeline?

That gives you life

That keeps you going

No matter how rough the road is

But you smile 

With the company of your lifeline.

I wonder,

What is lifeline for me

My family, my friends, my first book

Come to my mind,

But is it true, do I really know myself,

Do i really know my lifeline?

I sometimes long for solitude

Do not want to think about anyone, not even me

Then how can they be my lifeline

Or does it change with time 

Am i the lifeline of myself?

What is there inside me that I can not see

That is keeping me on the toe

What is there inside me that I can only feel

That never lets me falter.

Science and mythology says 

You belong to nothingness.

As I write this I realize

And now I say, I belong to an emotion

The emotion that is always alive

Inside me, you and everybody

That is my lifeline

My emotion for everything....


Do you want to feel that emotion, then read Lifeline...



It is a story of 3 professionals and their struggles in their personal and professional life. It is written under the backdrop of a cutelovestory, deals with topics like office politics, start up and a social cause for women.


Here is the book teaser as well. Do watch it with some volume.

Do check it out on Amazon.in and Amazon.com


Let me know if you would like to read it and review it on your blog or social platform.

Oct 2, 2020

Change is inevitable

 



Accepting change will always be the challenge for people. It pushes them to come out of their comfort zone and exposes their weakness. The man or woman who stands tall and shows persistent efforts  attain success in life. 

In today’s scenario, it is of utmost importance for professionals and entrepreneurs. With the dynamic demand and supply pattern, consumer market tests the business model time and again. Entrepreneurs with a progressive thought process envision this change and adapts their business to suit the customer’s needs. This is one differentiator for the successful startups. The startups which adopted became successful and the ones which could not adapt were swept away by the consumer tide. 

Same applies to professionals, and those who adopted and up-skilled themselves have seen an exponential growth in their career 

One such story about adapting to change is Lifeline-Will they ever succeed. The novel talks about how adaptability and accepting change plays the important role in the life of professionals and entrepreneurs. It is written under the backdrop of a cute love story of the protagonist. 



It will be launched in mid-October, here is the Pre-Order Link


Blurb:

Teesha, an ambitious marketing workaholic, who is still battling the scars of her previous relationship, and Akhil, a consultant and an ace at his job, go through an internal battle, trying to defeat the demons of office politics and boost their respective careers. Will they be able to overcome the challenges that destiny has thrown at them in return for their hard work? Pulled into the drudgery of the brutal corporate world, will they be able to lead happy and content lives? Will love find a way into their lives?

Rati, a single mother and a freelancer, decides to launch a mobile application. Will she be successful in her startup venture and get the social identity she craved for? Will she gain acceptance as a single mother?

Lifeline is a story of love, friendship, money, office politics and startups. It is a story of survival and portrays love, care and respect revolving around myriad relationships and situations that we encounter in our lives.


And here is a video teaser



I am sure you will like the book. Here is the Pre-Order Link.



Sep 20, 2020

My journey from Blogger to Author

The book that changed my thought process was The Secret. I read it in 2008, and at that time I had a dream that one day I’d become an author and write my own novels. Around that time an article came in “Life” supplement of “Times of India” which had a title as “Want to become a writer”. Following principles of The Secret, I hanged that newspaper clipping in my cabinet so it would remind me repeatedly to become a writer. 

I belong to the family of non-writers and so I took some time to break that mental rut and in this process I started this blog in 2009. I wrote several posts and later struggled to maintain the continuity as I juggled between my professional commitments and personal aspirations.  However, I kept that tiny little flame alive and in 2017, I started writing my story. Although I was very busy in those years as I changed my job and we had a newborn in the family, and all these changes took my energy and engagement for some time. Some of my close friends kept on asking me about the book and even read a portion. They motivated me to finish it. So finally, I finished writing the raw version in Feb-2020, oblivious to the fact that finding a publisher followed by editing and marketing is equally tough as writing a book at the first place.

However, I got a publisher  who promoted debut authors.  After the painstaking editing work, the book is now ready to launch in October. It is a fiction and is a story about professionals who face hardships in corporate and personal life. It i written under the backdrop of a lovestory.

Here is the book cover and the blurb.


Blurb:

Teesha, an ambitious marketing workaholic, who is still battling the scars of her previous relationship, and Akhil, a consultant and an ace at his job, go through an internal battle, trying to defeat the demons of office politics and boost their respective careers. Will they be able to overcome the challenges that destiny has thrown at them in return for their hard work? Pulled into the drudgery of the brutal corporate world, will they be able to lead happy and content lives? Will love find a way into their lives?

Rati, a single mother and a freelancer, decides to launch a mobile application. Will she be successful in her startup venture and get the social identity she craved for? Will she gain acceptance as a single mother?

Lifeline is a story of love, friendship, money, office politics and startups. It is a story of survival and portrays love, care and respect revolving around myriad relationships and situations that we encounter in our lives.


Hope you all will like the book, it will be launched in October.

Here is the preorder link:

Preorder Link


Sep 12, 2020

Two magical ways to manage tough people

Have you ever had troubles in managing tough people?

 Is there a colleague who would give you a hard time to share that report, or a neighbor who would not speak a respectful sentence to you, or a real estate agent who knows that you are on his mercy? How do you deal with such people? I sometimes have had a hard time dealing with such personalities. 

Recently, I attended an open session of Toastmasters- a club of people to hone their leadership, communication and many life-skills, where a speaker gave these two wonderful ways to deal with such people.

1) The Bheem Way

2) The Hanuman Way

This sounds funny but is interesting and should be helpful for all of us.


The Bheem Way



This technique tells us to bluntly challenge the person for a task. Challenge his ego that he could not do a particular task, and after some time you will find that he will do the task.

The Hanuman Way



This technique tells us to give utmost importance to the person. Tell him you are the only one who can do this task, and he will do the task may be more than what you would think.

You may ask me, “ how to decide which technique to use?”

I would say," Well, interesting question but before applying the technique you understand that person’s character. The Bheem way should work with people who have proven themselves repeatedly infront of the world and have gained some fame in their known circle. 

The Hanuman way should work with people who are very talented but don’t believe in showing off their talent. There can be other ways also, but I think these two approaches can be helpful."

Also, you should not use the same technique again with the same person or else he will beat your guts out if he turns out to be a Bheem or a Hanuman. 

Sep 2, 2020

A life-lesson from a Speed Breaker

 Last week I was driving  slowly at 12km/hr in the parking lot of my society. It had metallic speed breakers installed at every 100 metres. Bumps that have a higher tangential angle, meaning a bit steep at the end and less flat at the top. At that time, a phone call from my friend made me stop in between and later I realized that the front tyres were right at the brink of one of those speed breakers.

I put first gear, slowly releasing clutch and accelerating at the same time but car stopped with a slight jerk. I tried again this time putting up more acceleration in half clutch and it took over and I was off to my destination.

The first attempt did not have the momentum  that a moving car has. The momentum help the car to overtake the breakers with minimum power.  Similarly these breakers or obstacles are like problems in our daily life and if we want to overcome them easily then we should always have something new going on, ready to learn new things. The new knowledge exercises our brain and keeps the momentum in our body and soul. If you adopt complacency then the effort required to break any obstacle multiplies in geometric progression or sometimes has a scary exponential increment.

This momentum of learning is the key to success for anything as it breaks the big effort into small steps of daily discipline and dedication. We may not realize it instantly but the habit of simple easy things actually add up to a bigger effort to overcome these speed breakers. It sets the foundation for ourself.

So keep learning, keep innovating and not even for a second let the complacency take hold of you. But if you feel low and dejected then- first, talk to people who are energetic everytime , read good books, and then look into your life mirror. You will find a solution for yourself.


Keep smiling :)

Aug 21, 2020

#Nepotism


Above is an English translation of the Hindi dialogue "Raja ka beta raja hota hai" from Super-30, a Bollywood movie based on a true story of an individual who trained thousands of students free of cost to crack the toughest exam of the country -IIT JEE. He gave the right to education to the poor and turned their life around.  In a way, it tried to follow the right to education to prepare for IIT.  (I have my own journey of appearing for IIT but saving that story for future )

Although I think the dialogue does not completely relate to the true story that producers attempted to portray, but it appropriately relates to the open debate on #nepotism. Triggered by the death of Sushant Singh rajput- SSR, the debate on #nepotism is not looking to end too soon and is becoming a movement greater than #Metoo. 

I was very sad after the death of SSR. He was the rank holder  (AIEEE Rank 7) and studied in DCE ( Delhi College of Engineering). Such rank holders have got immense mental strength and are fighters, the challenges of life do not bog them down but they face it with unparalleled courage.

Can #Nepotism cause his death? Well, it is not sure whether we may come to know the truth, or will it be buried under history as a death in mysterious circumstances? But the theory of depression doesn’t suit SSR personality.

Talking about nepotism, it is not only in Bollywood but exist in every sphere of life. Has it affected me?, the answer is Yes. Has it affected the entire human race? the answer is yes. 


"Everybody is the product of #nepotism"

Remember Mahabharata, the entire epic is based on #nepotism. A blind person, Dhritrasthra is made a king of the clan, and then he wanted Duryodhana, his unworthy son, to be the king which triggered the biggest war of human history. 

Why was there a rule that “The king’s son can only be the king” because the forefathers of the clan acquired the region with their struggle and created their own kingdom.  Now that they have created the kingdom, then why would they not want their children and future generations to take advantage of their struggle. So in a way, it is right and anybody is free to have a war to put their claim to the throne

Talking about contemporary time, in most of the cases, a family-owned business always has a successor from the same family. Capability is never the ideology behind the selection. But the ideology is that the person who started the company will want his family to continue and not want them to struggle the same way as he did but take it ahead to new heights never attained before. So this kind of nepotism is ok and everybody does that at their level.

In the current debate in Bollywood, no actor shall like to see his children struggle but shall want them to use his network and contacts to start a career. And there is nothing wrong in that. Why would he want his kids to struggle the same way as he did?  Out of kindness, and real capability of other people, a person can support others but it can never be the obligation.  Now, talking about outsiders and their expectation to get work in big production houses: My question to them why don’t you do the same work  what your father did at  young age, you will get the benefit of your father’s experience, #Nepotism so to say. If you are doing something new that nobody in your family has done it then you are bound to struggle, it has to happen but your kids, if they follow your path will take benefit of your struggle and move ahead. This is how life works. If you have so much problem with nepotism, then follow your father’s path and take the advantage that you can get out of nepotism. 

I also some times crib that my first job is not as some department head or a strategist but merely an employee of a company. But that’s the choice that I made and the struggle I chose, so there is nothing to crib but to work hard and become that much able that your future generation can take some advantage of your struggle and move ahead in life #Nepotsim.

The Ugly Truth

But it does not sometimes end here. Big people with power take advantage of outsiders and desperate people.  They do not give them due credit. Female and male wannabes need to compromise to get work. This no doubt is wrong and should be stopped.  

What should people do?

You should build on your emotional strength and explore the true meaning of happiness for you. Your desperation and want of social acceptance and respect can make you do crazy things but you have to balance your mind, look into your Life Mirror and find out your true long-term ambition and vision of life. 

May be rough, but there will be an alternate route available.


Aug 9, 2020

Canvass of a Mind- Book Review

Engrossing...Was the first reaction as I finished this book. After a long time I grabbed a love story, and was ecstatic that I chose this one. The riveting story coupled with a nail-biting twist and intriguing narration is the USP of the book. 

Let me tell you, the first thing that I liked about this novel was the names of the main characters -Akashi and Ipsha. The story is of these two sisters who have lost their parent in childhood, and live by themselves in Kalimpong. Apart from dealing with their love interests, the story revolves around the bonding and relationship that the two sisters share in their life .

It takes pace when a stranger follows Ipsha and leaves down mysterious love notes for her. Wooed by these alluring love notes, she gets attracted to the stranger and falls in love with him. 

But will Ipsha be able to flourish her love with a stranger, and sustain her strong bond with Aakashi all together?

 
“Nothing further...This is no spoiler, you have got to read the book”


It is a very compelling book, and I finished it too soon. I prefer reading in gaps of time and sometimes I drag a book for weeks or a month, but this book didn’t let me do that and kept me off the hook with its gripping tale. Though, in between it looked to be a bit of a bollywood lovestory but then the ending will change your entire impression about the book. I like books which surprise me at the end and this is one of them.


Why I chose this book?

I recently started reading books from Indian authors (took a halt for some years), and indiblogger introduced me to the author-Purba Chakraborty. I liked her writing style, the title of the book was unique, and it already had nice reviews so I grabbed it.

Who should read this book?

It is a psychological thriller in the backdrop of a love-story, and can be a very good weekend-read or a travel-buddy. All those who like good narration, love-story and psychological thriller can pick this book with no second thoughts.



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Happy Reading :)

Aug 4, 2020

The five people you meet in heaven- Book Review


Enticed by the title and nice online reviews, I selected it and simply put I was amazed by this book, and the author’s thought process. Imagining heaven seemed next to impossible for me and even today I am clueless if I have to write about heaven but this book made me feel that how heaven could be. 


The story starts with the death of old and crippled Freddie in an accident. He worked as a maintenance person in the amusement park. It then takes Freddie to heaven where he gets to meet five people from his life on earth.  The people who had marked a significant life event in his life. He interacts with them and sets his mind free of all the prejudices and doubts that he had had while his time on earth.


 The story is very simple, but the USP of this book is the concept of heaven and a meticulous narration of the story. It is not a thriller, not a run down chase sequence, no mystery, but you would never want it to end. 

Why I rated this as four stars and not five?

I expected more description and context of Freddie's discussion with the fourth and fifth people. It was great but it did not match the way it was explained for the first three people. 


This book is not for people who only like fan-fiction, love-stories or run-down chase thrillers. This book is for readers who want to understand life, explore  people around them and ready to take inspiration from anybody and everybody. It will help you see your Life Mirror.

Happy Reading :)

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Jul 19, 2020

5 things to do after Lockdown

This post has been published by me as a part of Blog-a-Ton 59; the fifty-ninth edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. In association with ​IndiCreator. For Creators. By Creators.. Share Your #LockdownTales at indicreator.com

Lockdown and the corona pandemic has taken a toll on everybody. Rich or poor, nobody is spared by the corona, and this has turned out to be an equalizer as money can not ensure vaccine or early cure of the virus. In fact, if this crisis continued for a longer time, it can affect the entire human race. Today, the entire country and the world might not be in the lockdown but it continues to feel like till we return to normalcy. 

The Corona time is bringing many changes in our lifestyle ,and we could not do several things we used to do months back. After normalcy, our habits and lifestyle will also transform, we will adopt new habits and will drop older ones.  But then there are certain things that you and I should do first after the crisis is over.

Bear-hug your friend

Are you not missing that hug from your close friends? Nobody ever imagined a greeting without a handshake or a hug. The greeting which symbolizes the closeness of emotions with the person. This bear hug is very important to eliminate the emotional distancing that is accompanying the social one.


Drive to a hill station/beach

Would you like to drive to a hill station or to a beach with your family? Enroute, you will again, as earlier times, enjoy the desi Indian dhaba food. The delicious, finger-licking and mouthwatering food will pamper and rejuvenate you.

Hill stations and beaches will take away that feeling of confinement of your home, and you will enjoy the cleanest and purest nature that you may have never seen in the past. Why? Because one of the biggest positives of this epidemic is the cleansing of environment. 


Do Shopping in the mall

Would you like to do a window shopping in the mall? Yes maybe you should, even if you prefer online, at least feel that you belong to this place to this community. Nostalgia would be all over you the moment you enter the shops that always have those favorite collection of dresses and shoes. 


Visit your parents home

A lot of us work in different cities away from our parents and native place. It might be the best thing to do after a long gap. A meeting after a long time would make you relive those childhood memories with your parents. You could again feel that protectiveness as you would enter your home.


Adopt Minimalistic lifestyle

This lock-down has helped us to break that mental rut that we could not survive without household helps, and not only that, but we by ourselves can do many other things. If we reflect upon the lock-down, we would realize that we do not use so many things at our home. I think it would be the best time to rethink about your lifestyle and what all new habits you should take and the older ones to leave in the corona time. Minimalistic living thus should be the last one in this list to adopt right after the pandemic is over.



But, unfortunately, as per the current scenario- “Dilli is far far away”. We don’t know the end but the best way to utilize this time, apart from creating #Lockdowntales for future, is to reflect about yourself and decide what permanent changes you would bring during and after #lockdown.


Pl also read the post “The Covid Impact”  which talks about the probable impact of COVID-19 to the entire human race.


The fellow Blog-a-Tonics who took part in this Blog-a-Ton and links to their respective posts can be checked here. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton. Show your support for the hastags #BlogATon59 & #LockdownTales. Participation Count: XX.

Jul 15, 2020

Nex-Tep: Book Review



Nex-Tep is a book for all the young professionals and  aspiring managers. It will guide them to shape their career in the right direction, and will help them take a wise decision to sustain and grow in the professional world.

Although non-fiction, the book starts with this guy who leaves office with confused and edgy mind, and enters Nex-Tep, a cafe. He was a top performer at his company, but not getting a due promotion demotivated and shattered him to the core. In the cafe, he shares his table with another stranger, and also shares his mental condition with him. The stranger eventually guides him to follow the correct path,  shows him the mirror and makes him realize the next steps that he can take for his career.

The concept of conversation between the two people is a novel approach in a non- fiction book to apprise the reader with the intended message. Writing is simple, easy to read and would also entice readers to finish it.

The concepts explained in the book were not new for me but I liked the approach that author has used to describe the same in fresh light. You would get to read about Frequency Illusion and Personal Branding in professional environment and one of my favorite line from the book is “ A good leader always hears the unsaid”. The statement itself guides an aspiring leader to the correct path.

At the end, I would recommend  all  professional debutantes, irrespective of the industry, should read this book. The people in the later stage of their professional career can read this book to revisit the concepts with the fresh outlook.

Happy Reading :)

PS: Please click on the image above to purchase this book.
PPS: Please read other book reviews from this link.



Jul 11, 2020

The COVID Impact



The lock-down season brought many changes in our lifestyle. We never imagined that swarms of traffic would become a thing of the past, that we will not eat for months from restaurants. The companies, giant and tiny,  promoted work from home for survival of business. Even with such an availability of manpower, we would live without maids and the other daily help. Nobody could have imagined it in this lifetime, but it happened. We do not yet know the end. The greatest pundits of the world say that vaccine would bring an end to this. Every pharmaceutical company, big and small, has entered this rat race to find the vaccine. For them, they found a gold mine, but with a secret key. Even if they decode that secret key and create a vaccine, will this ever end what has begun in 2020? Can this fear ever be swept away from hearts and minds of you, me and everybody else? Will we not doubt the air that we breathe in the future? The fear of another airborne infection will forever lurk outside our homes. No great minds or genius has a solution today as everybody is on a recovery mode even when they don’t yet know the entire impact of the COVID.


What do you think is the biggest impact of COVID to the human race? 


There are several positive points of lock-down for some would have explored their hobbies, have completed their long pending tasks, some would have explored novel business opportunities, but the biggest impact of COVID is yet to be realized.
Some months back, before lock down, I read this amazing book  Sapiens- A brief History of Mankind  by Yuval Noah Harari. It left an indelible impression on my mind and it answered the most prominent questions of our past 

  • How Sapiens could rule this world?

  • How did they eradicate the entire Neanderthal species, and  why other powerful and large animals could not claim the supremacy on this earth?


The book says it is our inherent ability to make larger groups that no other species can do or had done  in this world. One reason we, The Sapiens, dominated the earth is because of this inherent ability. 


"Neanderthals usually hunted alone or in small groups. Sapiens on the other hand, developed techniques that relied on cooperation between many dozens of individual, and perhaps even between different bands. Neanderthals could have beaten Sapiens in a one-on-one brawl, but probably, in a conflict of hundreds, Neanderthals wouldn't stand a chance." 

"Even our earlier predecessor Chimpanzee could not make and communicate in a group of more than ten. There would be a pandemonium if thousands of chimpanzee were allowed to watch a cricket match together in a stadium, but Sapiens could do that with unimaginable harmony."


Today, the COVID Effect is reducing our inherent ability to make groups. People can not make groups from fear of contracting the infection.  Does this mean it is the beginning of the end of human supremacy in this world? Let us assume for a time being that there are other viruses and airborne infections in this world, pardon me for being pessimistic but this is the need of the hour, the armies will not exist, the entire concept of mass gatherings will fade away. Slowly our inherent nature will change to not make larger groups, and then we would be tested on our individual muscle power rather than a group power. The entire food chain can become upside down as the most extreme effect of The COVID. 


Reiterating that the problem does not end with vaccine, but it is just a premonition of bigger evil for the entire human race. Nature is telling to change our ways of living, otherwise it will take its own course and it will give the crown of supremacy to the other species. No wonder if this could evolve the homo sapiens into another specie like neanderthals evolved into homo sapiens. It will not happen in a day or years even if it has to happen.It will not happen in our lifetime or our grand children’s lifetime because the evolution is a slow process and it can take a century or hundreds of years but this could be the beginning of such evolution as it is alleviating our most basic ability to create groups.


What we can do now?


Following nature’s laws is the  best we can do. We have to create renewable resources and have to utilize natural elements. We, being the supreme species, have to create space for lesser species otherwise nature will evolve by itself and no wonder it will give birth to the new evolved Sapien.



Survival of the fittest




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