Friday, July 31, 2009

Be Happy – Revisit Yourself

If you are ready to begin living the life you always wanted? Ready to enjoy success, happiness and more? Ready to be more confident? If we don't change our thoughts and beliefs, everything stays the same. If we don't take control - nothing changes. We may have to learn how to regain control of our life. As we are aware, quitting a habit developed by us long ago, or achieving an important goal can be extremely difficult. You could go crazy trying to succeed at just one seemingly simple thing, only to fail again and again.

You may have already given up on yourself. But don't quit just yet - there is a way to begin living the life you want and more. How? It is just your determination, renewed determination to do so. You really truly have everything you need already inside you. You can achieve anything you want - and all you have to do is train your mind to work with your subconscious mind. It's like training for success. Before you can begin achieving your goals, you first have to know what you want - and that means you need to get focused.

Getting Focused.

If you want to achieve your goals, improve your life, enjoy life or discover your true calling - whatever it is, if you want to achieve you may first have to decide what is important and then come up with a plan. You don't have to come up with all the details but you have to come up with a list of what you want to achieve,and have a general idea of how you plan to get there.

Did you know that 80-percent of people who write down their goals achieve them.
Yet less than 5-percent of people in the world actually write down their goals and desires? Those are astounding figures - and think about it - just by simply writing down your goals, objectives and plans you increase your chance of success and achievement by 80-percent.

Did you also know that most successful people and the wealthiest people in the world write down their goals and come up with a solid plan of action - before they became successful? Now you know why they're successful.

Why does coming up with a plan and decision make such a difference?

Because when you make a decision, write it down, come up with a plan - you tell your subconscious mind, and you send out a message - that you're ready for success and that you will accept nothing less than success. It's a powerful message that supercharges your subconscious mind to get moving on achieving these goals.

Start by getting focused; learn to decide which goals you truly want to accomplish, then begin sending your subconscious mind the right instructions to help you achieve your goals.

Discovering What You Want

Some of you may say: "I don't know what I want to do. I can't decide what I want to do - how can I write down anything if I don't know what I want to do?" This is a typical response. But you know what? You do know. Deep inside you there is a passion that has been covered up by negative thoughts, negative thinking, and confusion from all those years of doubt and fear. How do you discover this?

First, you may have to start thinking. Just, start thinking about what you want to accomplish in life. Fast forward to five years from now - what does life look like?
What are you doing? Think of the ideal situation. If you start doing that you'll get your mind moving in a certain direction. Decide what you want then supercharge your subconscious mind by giving it the right instructions so that you begin attracting the situations and people that will help you achieve your goals.

The Power Of Your Mind

The mind is an incredibly powerful tool - yet we only use a small portion of it and when we do - and we use that portion poorly. Researchers have proven that our mental state has a direct impact on our body.

If you're stressed or worried for most of the active time available at your disposal- you stand a better chance of getting sick. You need to give up those worries or stresses, created by you due to indecision, and which occupy your mind. Free your mind for more productive work. The mind is an incredibly powerful tool - and when you use it correctly - you'll be able to get back on track, discover what you want and why and start creating wonderful opportunities in your life. Why? Because your subconscious will pick up the messages from your mind and act on it. We create what we think and what we think sends out a vibration that attracts similar thoughts and people who share similar thoughts. Think of thoughts as vibrations - that are picked up by the subconscious and the universe and manifested in reality.

Beliefs have powerful vibrations and will be manifested sooner.

So if you constantly say you don't know what you want to do, or you're not sure, or you can't figure it out - you're only going to create more confusion and you're only going to attract situations that will confuse you even more. Stop this never-ending cycle of confusion and begin thinking about what you want. Negative thoughts create negative beliefs, which are negative vibrations - in the end you attract negative situations, negative people and a negative lifestyle. Begin creating the right vibrations, and the right energy to attract the opportunities, people and situations to help you achieve your goals.

The Key To Success

If you want to be successful at anything you first have to believe that you can accomplish something. Your key to success is your belief system. If you have a negative belief system then your success will be limited. If you have a positive belief system, then, you will enjoy success after success and a rewarding life.

You know! How our beliefs are our vibrations sent to the subconscious mind and the universe. These vibrations are then manifested in reality. We're going to get into how your limited beliefs create a limited reality and what you can do to change that. Unfortunately most people don't believe that they can achieve their goals. They often wish they can - but they don't truly believe this. In the end, they have a negative belief system that limits them. Why? Because a lot of people have been conditioned to believe that things are difficult, that life is tough, that you have to fight to get to the top, etc. These are all limited belief patterns that will destroy your chances for success. Any negative thought pattern or belief will create a vibration that will ultimately limit or destroy your chances for success.

Where do these negative thought patterns and negative beliefs come from? For most of your life, your mind has been reacting to situations, listening to others, following what other people say and basically going in a negative direction.

Why? Because your mind has never been told what to do.

Look at it this way: There's your mind - which contains all of these negative thought patterns and negative beliefs - and then there's you - who wants to achieve all these wonderful goals. However, you have negative thought patterns that go against your ability to achieve your goals. For example, you want to be successful in your job. But your thought pattern is that you're no good that you can't even do your job well, no one likes you, they're going to make cuts and you're next. If you have such a negative thought pattern and negative beliefs about your abilities - no matter how much you may want to do better and no matter how much you may want to improve your performance at work - it won't happen.

Why not? Because you don't believe it will happen. Every belief you have is picked up by your subconscious mind and manifested in reality. Negative thought patterns lead to a negative belief about particular areas of your life.

We must understand that our subconscious mind doesn't distinguish between what is good or bad for us and what is for you. It doesn't say: "Hey, let's not do that - it won't be good for you." That moral clause is in your mind - your subconscious simply responds to the instructions from the mind. Those instructions are your thoughts, and beliefs.

That's why if you have a negative belief about something – your reality will represent that belief - and you continue to believe it - because you think it's true. It becomes a vicious cycle, which you created in the first place because of the negative thought pattern that you held on to for so long. The only way you can break it is to change your beliefs - then your reality will change. Start changing your beliefs today and begin taking control of your life right now.

How To Be successful

If you want to be successful, enjoy happiness and inner fulfillment, and become more confident - then start examining the areas that need improvement. Then, take the next step and make note of your thought patterns? Do they limit you? Are they getting in the way of what you want to achieve? Do they help you accomplish your goals? For example, you want to meet the right person - but you believe that there are no good men or women out there in the gathering you are going to attend. You believe that relationships are difficult and that you can't have
a long-term relationship with someone. You believe that all relationships come to an end due to some or other reason. No matter what you do, no matter what you try, you'll never meet the right person because your limiting belief system will stop you and sabotage every relationship and every opportunity for a long-term relationship.

If you have a negative belief system about money or success, if you worry, stress out, or get scared about the future - your subconscious will act on these beliefs and make them your reality. In many ways, you destroy your own life based on the negative thoughts that you constantly have. Negative beliefs and negative thought patterns will make your life miserable.

Where do these negative beliefs and negative thought patterns come from? They come from how you interpret your past experiences, they come from your upbringing, they come from your childhood experiences, they come from conversations you've had with friends, neighbors, and people you trust.

If you wish that these negative thoughts should not live with you for ever, they won’t have to live with you forever. They don't have to be a part of your life from now on.

You can change these negative thought patterns and negative beliefs - into powerful positive thoughts and beliefs so that you achieve your goals and live the life you want.

It is essential to revisit yourself to be happy. We may discuss about some more tools in our next post. In the meanwhile, we may begin our revisit of ourselves.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Be Happy – Give Up Your Confusion

Whenever we are put to decide on some issue, we need to decide one side – either yes or no. The most difficult thing, the almost impossible thing for the mind, is to remain in the middle, to remain balanced. And to move from one thing to its opposite is the easiest. To move from one polarity to another is the nature of the mind.

If we are balanced, mind disappears. It works when we do not decide an issue in the beginning. Mind is like a disease: when you are imbalanced it is there, when you are balanced, it is not there. That is why it is easy for a person who overeats, to go on a fast. It looks illogical, because we think that a person who is obsessed with food cannot go on a fast. But we are wrong. Only a person who is obsessed with food can fast, because fasting is the same obsession in the opposite direction. We are not really changing ourselves. You are still obsessed with food. Before you were overeating; now you are hungry – but the mind remains focused on food from the opposite extreme.

It is difficult for the mind to come to the right diet, difficult for the mind to stay in the middle. It is just like a clock’s pendulum. The pendulum goes to the right, then it moves to the left, then again to the right and again to the left; the clock’s working depends on this movement.If the pendulum stays in the middle, the clock stops. And when the pendulum moves to the right, you think it is only going to the right, but at the same time it is gathering momentum to go the left, the more energy it gathers to move to the left, and vice versa.

Thinking means momentum. The mind starts arranging for the opposite. When you love a person you are gathering momentum to hate him. That’s why only friends can become enemies. You cannot suddenly become an enemy unless you have first become a friend. Only lovers can quarrel and fight, because unless you love, how can you hate? Unless you have moved far to the extreme left, how can you move to the right?

Modern research says that so-called love is a relationship of intimate love is a relationship of intimate enmity. Your wife is your intimate enmity, your husband is you intimate enemy – both intimate and inimical, illogical, because we wonder how one who is intimate can be the enemy; one who is a friend, how can he also be the foe? You can feel the day light only when you have passed through the darkness of night. You must try to give up the confusion first and decide the issue either side otherwise that issue will remain pending drawing your attention again and again.

Be Happy – Give Up Your Confusion.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Be Happy - Be True To Yourself

Mahatma Gandhi said,“WHAT… is Truth? A difficult question; but I have solved it for myself by saying that it is what the voice within tells you. How then, you ask, [do] different people think of different and contrary truths? Well, seeing that the human mind works through innumerable media and that the evolution of the human mind is not the same for all, it follows that what may be truth for one may be untruth for another, and hence those who have made these experiments have come to the conclusion that there are certain conditions to be observed in making those experiments…”

He also said “It is because we have at the present moment everybody claiming the right of conscience without going through any discipline whatsoever, and there is so much untruth being delivered to a bewildered world. All that I can in true humility present to you is that Truth is not to be found by anybody who has not got an abundant sense of humility. If you would swim on the bosom of the ocean of Truth, you must reduce yourself to a zero.”

He enumerated Truth to be the sovereign principle. He said, “For me truth is the sovereign principle, which includes numerous other principles. This truth is not only truthfulness in word, but truthfulness in thought also, and not only the relative truth of our conception, but the Absolute Truth, the Eternal Principle, that is God. There are innumerable definitions of God, because His manifestations are innumerable. They overwhelm me with wonder and awe and for a moment stun me.

But I worship God as Truth only. I have not yet found Him, but I am seeking after Him. I am prepared to sacrifice the things dearest to me in pursuit of this quest. Even if the sacrifice demanded be my very life, I hope I may be prepared to give it. But as long as I have not realized this Absolute Truth, so long must I hold by the relative truth as I have conceived it. That relative truth must, meanwhile, be my beacon, my shield and buckler. Though this path is strait and narrow and sharp as the razor's edge, for me it has been the quickest and easiest. Even my Himalayan blunders have seemed trifling to me because I have kept strictly to this path. For the path has saved me from coming to grief, and I have gone forward according to my light. Often in my progress I have had faint glimpses of the Absolute Truth, God, and daily the conviction is growing upon me that He alone is real and all else is unreal.”

His opinion regarding truth includes the following statements as well,.”..The further conviction has been growing upon me that whatever is possible for me is possible even for a child, and I have found sound reasons for saying so. The instruments for the quest of Truth are as simple as they are difficult. They may appear quite impossible to an arrogant person, and quite possible to an innocent child…. The seeker after Truth should be humbler than the dust. The world crushes the dust under its feet, but the seeker after Truth should so humble himself that even the dust could crush him. Only then, and not till then, will he have a glimpse of Truth.”

“Truth is like a vast tree, which yields more and more fruit the more you nurture it. The deeper the search in the mine of truth the richer the discovery of the gems buried there, in the shape of openings for an even greater variety of service.” In the march towards Truth, anger selfishness, hatred, etc., naturally give way, for otherwise Truth would be impossible to attain. A man who is swayed by passions may have good enough intentions, may be truthful in word, but he will never find the Truth. A successful search for Truth means complete deliverance from the dual throng such as of love and hate, happiness and misery.

To see the universal and all-pervading spirit of Truth face to face one must be able to love the meanest of creation as oneself. And a man who aspires after that cannot afford to keep out of any field of life. Truth resides in every human heart, and one has to search for it there, and to be guided by truth as one sees it. But no one has a right to coerce others to act according to his own view of truth.

It is not given to man to know the whole Truth. His duty lies in living up to the truth as he sees it, and in doing so. We must only follow the truth as we see it. Such pursuit of truth cannot lead anyone astray.

Regarding experimenting, Mahatma Gandhi said, “I have in my life never been guilty of saying things I did not mean--my nature is to go straight to the heart and, if often I fail in doing so for the time being, I know that Truth will ultimately make itself heard and felt, as it has often done in my experience. Let hundreds like me perish, but let Truth prevail. Let us not reduce the standards of Truth even by a hair's breadth for judging erring mortals like myself.In judging myself I shall try to be as harsh as truth, as I want others also to be.”

You decide for yourself what you want. It is not for others to decide for you. Instead of always listening to others, listen to your own heart. We know the truth, not only by the reason, but also by the heart. Nothing is easier than self-deceit. For what each man wishes, that he also believes to be true. The truth which has made us free will in the end make us glad also.

All truths are easy to understand once they are discovered; the point is to discover them. In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act. When in doubt, tell the truth. How many legs does a dog have if you call the tail a leg? Four; calling a tail a leg doesn't make it a leg. It is said an Eastern monarch once charged his wise men to invent him a sentence to be ever in view, and which should be true and appropriate in all times and situations. They presented him the words: "And this, too, shall pass away."

The word "Truth" has a variety of meanings, from honesty, good faith, and sincerity in general, to agreement with fact or reality in particular. The term has no single definition about which a majority of professional philosophers and scholars agree, and various theories of truth continue to be debated. There are differing claims on such questions as what constitutes truth; what things are truth-bearers capable of being true or false; how to define and identify truth; the roles that revealed and acquired knowledge play; and whether truth is subjective, relative, objective, or absolute. 'truth' involves both the quality of "faithfulness, fidelity, loyalty, sincerity, veracity", and that of "agreement with fact or reality" The truth in a particular context - a statement that is known to be correct —ie. in accord with reality, as corroborated by evidence or related experience.

The anxiety regarding truth is: Have we been true to ourselves? Are we following our heart, believing in ourselves, trusting our very own belief? Or has this thought never even occurred to us before? Now that we are reading this give ourselves this chance and ask ourselves this question. Be true and answer, isn’t it? To answer it, say either ‘yes’ or ‘no’. it’s as simple as that! But very often, things are not that simple for many. We might be one of them.

Living as we do in a modernized, fast-changing, ever-developing time, it is indeed hard for things to be that simple. Every one of us is, in a way, forced to keep up with the pace, brain-washed to just believe in the system. We are taught to believe that in order to survive and to be successful, we have to follow what is laid down for us, follow what everyone else is doing; that we should be doing this and not doing that.

But are you not the one who is supposed to be telling yourself what you should do, rather than being told by others? The sad truth is, many of us unknowingly live our lives, only to be consumed by regret in our later years; when it is too late to do anything. It’s a scary thought, isn’t it?

Now, this is certainly not the way life should be. To begin with, life shouldn’t and outer self must complement one another. Remember this. You came into this world with a journey of your own to discover. This life journey is yours and yours alone and nobody else’s. you decide for yourself what you want. It is not for others to decide for you. If you have to please someone, please yourself, not somebody else.

For all that exists in this world, there is always the equal and the opposite side. But though they may be opposing, they are a all times interrelating. This is the natural way of life. When there is day there will be night. When there is a positive there will be a negative. When there are strengths, there will also be weaknesses. The list goes on.

Similarly within you, when you can be happy you can be unhappy too. Surely, happiness is what you seek in life? So, be true to yourself! It is only when you are true to yourself that you will find happiness. Instead of listening to others to allow them to tell you that you shouldn’t do this and that, you tell yourself that you must do this and you must do that! Instead of listening to others, listen to your heart.

What is right and what is wrong? There is never a definite right or wrong. You do what you think is right for yourself. Just picture this scenario. Right from the time that we are children, we have been taught over and over again that it is sin to lie. Now, let me ask you something. If you can actually save a person’s life by telling a kind lie, would you? Suppose telling a kind lie would result in him being spared and given another chance, while telling the truth would mean that the poor man would lose his life. Now, which is a sin, to tell a lie or to indirectly murder someone? The line between being a saint or a murderer is a thin one.

Similarly, there is a thin line between a happy an unhappy you. Which side of the line do you want to be? To be a truthfully happy person, your actions must complement your thoughts and belief. You have to understand this. Even the slightest decision can affect your life. Sometimes having just a few additional minutes of sleep can make a difference to your day. Those few minutes could decide whether you will have an efficient day or a bad one.

Seek the correct way of life. Be Happy - Be true to yourself and you are bound to find happiness.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Be Happy – Learn From Nature

As we embrace the gentle rain and the small sprinklings of life, we prepare ourselves by learning the lessons the nature gives us at the perfect time, and place. The rain our life brings opportunities for growth. Whenever it rains, I am reminded of what my father always said. “You should not get wet. Just, run in between the raindrops, and you will be just fine.” I also think of that saying when life rains down hard on me and I wonder how to dodge the drops, then, too. father’s gentle and humorous confidence that life always worked out for the best instilled in me the same optimism and joyful outlook on life. When we realize that the inevitable rain showers come and go in our lives no matter how much we try to avoid the dampness of the moment, we find comfort and a sense of content understanding when we look behind the clouds of circumstance and know the sunshine of possibility never left our world.

Life lessons, like the rain in our lives, offer us both pleasant ad unpleasant experiences. We recognise that life’s challenges, much like precipitation, bring opportunities for growth, but only when the soil of our consciousness absorbs the lesson.

If we put up umbrellas of protection from the majesty of life falling down on us, we negate the possibility of receiving new information and therefore, deny progression towards our greater good. Yet, if we look up to the sky and willingly allow the inevitable rain to reach us, we may indeed get wet in the torrent of blessings disguised as a dark cloud teaching us valuable lessons. Only when we walk in the rain, with its glorious thunder and lighting and life-sustaining water, do we embrace the possibility of moving through it and accepting the blessings it brings. When it rains, it pours.

At times in our lives, we experience drought or downpour. We complacently go from day to day, enjoying our bliss. All the while, somewhere, the rain builds, but it avoids hitting us directly. We see the accumulation of problems and feel the residual effects the gathering storm, but we don’t experience the outburst directly. And then, when the skies open up and problems pour down on us, we use different methods, like prayer or coping mechanisms, to assist us in redirecting the conflict away from us, for a better use. Like weather, does God give us an all or nothing presentation of life’s challenges? Sometimes, it seems that way.

Unlike a waterfall, rain falls to earth in droplets. One little lesson at a time, we feel soaked in life’s education, yet we must remember what’s in between the drops themselves. My father’s gentle advice to run in between the drops meant that while we experience the downpour of life, the way to cross the street to a sunny side of positive outcome, is to take advantage of those brief moments and spaces in time – between the drops – and take a breath of air to assess the next challenge. He never claimed it wouldn’t rain, he just pointed out to mitigate the effects of the harshness of life, move deliberately and quickly from one challenge to the next.

I can’t learn the lesson if I avoid it, I must walk through it. If we repeatedly put up umbrellas to block the lessons from touching our lives, we never experience the purpose of the education and we must suffer repeated exposure to the challenge.

Like the weather, we control very little of what rains down on us. When we divert or ignore the problems in our lives, they return with fervour, like the microburst, and flood our consciousness with such powerful lessons, we can’t turn deny the issues swirling at our feet, threatening our demise.

As we embrace the gentle rain and the small sprinklings of life happening from time to time, we prepare ourselves by learning slowly and completely the lessons the heavens give us at the perfect time and place, and in the perfect order. Rain, life life’s ordeals, give us nourishment, and is necessary for growth. Without the existence of the dark clouds and humidity, the sunshine in our lives may be taken for granted. Celebrate your life between the dark clouds and wet air and know if you move with speed and deliberation and learn from the storms in your life, the clouds eventually move on. Everything in life is temporary. Difficulties really do evaporate with time. Your true power is found between the trickles of misfortune, in the awareness of your ability to move from one challenge to the next.

Be Happy – Learn From Nature

Monday, July 27, 2009

Be happy - Deal with stress successfully

People are capable of being stressed for just about anything. What can we do about it? We don’t need to do anything about stress; stress is like friction in a machine. There is friction in the machine because there is no proper movement of the parts, or there is not enough lubrication. The less friction you have, the more efficient the machine becomes. While stress, of any kind, is undeniably damaging, there are many things we can do to reduce its impact and cope with symptoms.

Now, we are not looking at how to manage stress, and how to keep it under the surface. We need to do how to avoid its creation. Actually, stress is our creation because we try to take up all the things, all the matters more seriously than they deserve individually. We can fix up the priorities.

How to manage stress

Sometime, we feel that the stress in our life is out of our control, but we can always control the way we respond. Managing stress is all about taking charge: taking charge of our thoughts, our emotions, our time management, our environment, and the way we deal with problems. Stress management involves changing the stressful situation when we can, changing our reaction when we can’t, taking care of ourselves, and making time for rest and relaxation. There are other tools also.

We can strengthen our relationships.

A strong support network is our greatest protection against stress. When we have trusted friends and family members we can count on, life’s pressures don’t seem as overwhelming. So, we must spend time with the people we love and don’t let our responsibilities keep us from having a social life. If we don’t have any close relationships, or our relationships are the source of your stress, we should make it a priority to build stronger and more satisfying connections. We can build up our relationships by helping someone else by volunteering, having lunch or coffee with a co-worker, calling or contacting an old friend, going for a walk with a workout buddy, scheduling a weekly dinner date and/or taking a class or joining a club.

We may try to relax.

We can’t completely eliminate stress from our life, but we can control how much it affects us. Relaxation techniques such as yoga, meditation, and deep breathing activate the body’s relaxation response, a state of restfulness that is the opposite of the stress response. When practiced regularly, these activities lead to a reduction in our everyday stress levels and a boost in our feelings of joy and serenity. They also increase our ability to stay calm and collected under pressure. We may find that solution within six weeks, there is a considerable drop in our pulse rate, heart-beat, in the way our system functions, because our whole system will start functioning at ease. When the very nature of our existence becomes easy, we would be restful all the time. Then, there would be no such thing as stress. Restfulness is the basis of all activity. We can be most effective in our life only when everything is at complete ease within. If our ability to act becomes effortless, naturally there is no such thing as stress.

We need to look at the fundamental mechanics of life, why are our body and mind not doing what we want them to do. If we do a process of yoga, it needs to be in its full depth and dimension, not just the physicality of it. It is neither physical nor mental; it has got something to do with the core of our life. If all of us is not involved in the yoga that we do, if it has not been transmitted to us, it has just been taught to us, it is a bundle of instructions, not an initiation – if that is so, we are misusing yoga – would we, for instance, use an airplane as we would a car?
Yoga is not a solution for our stress – there is no need for stress. Yoga is the removal of the problem. We don’t create stress anymore, that’s all. If we don’t create stress, then why do we need a solution for it? Stress is our making. So if we get a little deeper access to the experience of life within us, we will distinctly know this and we will drop it.

Yoga transforms and liberates human beings so that they can reach this unbounded state. Humans, unlike animals, do not merely exist. They are becoming. To evolve as a human being is to become aware of one’s limitations; to strive, with intense passion, towards the transcendence for which we all have the potential. The emphasis of yoga, therefore, is not on the external and perceivable areas of endeavour, which lead to bondage and limitation, but on the inner and intangible fields, which lead to freedom and perfection. It involves the transformation of a limited being into an unbounded one.

We must invest in our emotional health.

Most people ignore their emotional health until there’s a problem. But just as it requires time and energy to build or maintain our physical health, so it is with our emotional well-being. The more we put in to it, the stronger it will be. People with good emotional health have an ability to bounce back from stress and adversity. This ability is called resilience. They remain focused, flexible, and positive in bad times as well as good. The good news is that there are many steps we can take to build our resilience and our overall emotional health.

The people who are mentally and emotionally healthy have a sense of contentment, a zest for living and the ability to laugh and have fun, the ability to deal with stress and bounce back from adversity, a sense of meaning and purpose, in both their activities and their relationships, the flexibility to learn new things and adapt to change, a balance between work and play, rest and activity, etc., the ability to build and maintain fulfilling relationships, self-confidence and high self-esteem. These positive characteristics of mental and emotional health allow you to participate in life to the fullest extent possible through productive, meaningful activities and strong relationships. These positive characteristics also help you cope when faced with life's challenges and stresses.

Be Happy – We must deal with stress successfully.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Be Happy - Become Stress-free

Now-a-days, stress management has become a hot topic for discussions amongst friends, with doctors, in our social meetings and informal chats. We try to mange our families, our money, our property, our businesses – we manage whatever is valuable to us. But we are not able to manage our mental stress. Why would anybody manage stress? We understand that people have made stress part of life. Stress is not a part of life. It is not your lifestyle, it is not your work, it is not your family, it is not the situations in which you exist which cause stress to you; it is your inability to manage your system – your body, mind, emotions and your energy – your lack of understanding of how this system functions, your inability to use the system the way it should be used.

Modern life is full of hassles, deadlines, frustrations, and demands. For many people, stress is so commonplace that it has become a way of life. Stress isn’t always bad. In small doses, it can help you perform under pressure and motivate you to do your best. But when you’re constantly running in emergency mode, your mind and body may have to pay the price.

If you frequently find yourself feeling frazzled and overwhelmed, it’s time to take action to bring your nervous system back into balance. You can protect yourself by learning how to recognize the signs and symptoms of stress and taking steps to reduce its harmful effects.

When you perceive a threat, your nervous system responds by releasing a flood of stress hormones, including adrenaline and cortisol. These hormones rouse the body for emergency action. Your heart pounds faster, muscles tighten, blood pressure rises, breath quickens, and your senses become sharper. These physical changes increase your strength and stamina, speed your reaction time, and enhance your focus – preparing you to either fight or flee from the danger at hand.

Stress is a normal physical response to events that make you feel threatened or upset your balance in some way. It is what keeps you on your toes during a presentation at work, sharpens your concentration when you’re attempting the game-winning free throw, or drives you to study for an exam when you'd rather be watching TV. When you sense danger – whether it’s real or imagined – the body's defenses kick into high gear in a rapid, automatic process known as the “fight-or-flight” reaction, or the stress response.

The stress response is the body’s way of protecting you. When working properly, it helps you stay focused, energetic, and alert. In emergency situations, stress can save your life – giving you extra strength to defend yourself, for example, or spurring you to slam on the brakes to avoid an accident. The stress response also helps you rise to meet challenges.

But beyond a certain point, stress stops being helpful and starts causing major damage to your health, your mood, your productivity, your relationships, and your quality of life as well.

How does stress affect you?

The body doesn’t distinguish between physical and psychological threats. When you’re stressed over a busy schedule, an argument with a friend, a traffic jam, or a mountain of bills, your body reacts just as strongly as if you were facing a life-or-death situation. If you have a lot of responsibilities and worries, your emergency stress response may be “on” most of the time. The more your body’s stress system is activated, the easier it is to trip and the harder it is to shut off.

Long-term exposure to stress can lead to serious health problems. Chronic stress disrupts nearly every system in your body. It can raise blood pressure, suppress the immune system, increase the risk of heart attack and stroke, contribute to infertility, and speed up the aging process. Long-term stress can even rewire the brain, leaving you more vulnerable to anxiety and depression.

Many health problems are caused by stress, including Pain of any kind, Heart disease, Digestive problems, Sleep problems, Depression, Obesity, Autoimmune diseases and Skin conditions, such as eczema etc.

How much stress can we tolerate?

Because of the widespread damage stress can cause, it’s important to know our own limit. But just how much stress is “too much” differs from person to person. Some people roll with the punches, while others crumble at the slightest obstacle or frustration. Some people even seem to thrive on the excitement and challenge of a high-stress lifestyle. Our ability to tolerate stress depends on many factors, including the quality of our relationships, our general outlook on life, our emotional intelligence and genetics.

What influences our stress tolerance level?

• Our support network –
A strong network of supportive friends and family members is an enormous buffer against life’s stressors. On the flip side, the more lonely and isolated we are, the greater our vulnerability to stress.

• Our sense of control –
If we have confidence in ourselves and our ability to influence events and persevere through challenges, it’s easier to take stress in stride. People who are vulnerable to stress tend to feel like things are out of their control.

• Our attitude and outlook –
Stress-hardy people have an optimistic attitude. They tend to embrace challenges, have a strong sense of humour, accept that change is a part of life, and believe in a higher power or purpose.

• Our ability to deal with our emotions. We are extremely vulnerable to stress if we don’t know how to calm and soothe ourselves when we are feeling sad, angry, or afraid. The ability to bring our emotions into balance helps us bounce back from adversity.

• Our knowledge and preparation – The more you know about a stressful situation, including how long it will last and what to expect, the easier it is to cope. For example, if we go into surgery with a realistic picture of what to expect post-op, a painful recovery will be less traumatic than if we were expecting to bounce back immediately.

Are we in control of stress or is stress controlling us?

• When we feel agitated, do we know how to quickly calm and soothe ourselves?
• Can we easily let go of our anger?
• Can we turn to others at work to help us calm down and feel better?
• When we come home at night, do we walk in the door feeling alert and relaxed?
• Are we seldom distracted or moody?
• Are we able to recognize upsets that others seem to be experiencing?
• Do we easily turn to friends or family members for a calming influence?
• When our energy is low, do we know how to boost it?

As many times we question ourselves on the above lines, so deeper we may know our own attitude towards stress.

Causes of stress

When we recount the reasons of our stress, we will find one or more of the following reasons can be responsible for our stress:

1. Spouse’s death
2. Divorce
3. Marriage separation
4. Jail term
5. Death of a close relative
6. Injury or illness of self or some one we love
7. Unpeaceful Marriage
8. Fired from job
9. Maladjustment with the spouse.
10. Retirement

The situations and pressures that cause stress are known as stressors. We usually think of stressors as being negative, such as an exhausting work schedule or a rocky relationship. However, anything that puts high demands on you or forces you to adjust can be stressful. This includes positive events such as getting married, buying a house, going to college, or receiving a promotion.

What causes stress depends, at least in part, on your perception of it. Something that's stressful to you may not faze someone else; they may even enjoy it. For example, your morning commute may make you anxious and tense because you worry that traffic will make you late. Others, however, may find the trip relaxing because they allow more than enough time and enjoy listening to music while they drive.

Some Eternal Causes of Stress

Not all stress is caused by external factors. Stress can also be self-generated due to Major life changes, change in Work, Relationship difficulties, Financial problems, Being too busy and due to Children and family etc.

Some Internal Causes of Stress
Not all stress is caused by external factors. Stress can also be self-generated on account of Inability to accept uncertainty, Pessimism, Negative self-talk Unrealistic expectations, Perfectionism and Lack of assertiveness etc.

What's Stressful For Us?

What's stressful for us may be quite different from what's stressful to our best friend, our spouse, or the person next door. For example:
Some people enjoy speaking in public; others are terrified.
• Some people are more productive under deadline pressure; others are miserably tense.
• Some people are eager to help family and friends through difficult times; others find it very stressful.
• Some people feel comfortable complaining about bad service in a restaurant; others find it so difficult to complain that they prefer to suffer in silence.
• Some people may feel that changes at work represent a welcome opportunity; others worry about whether they'll be able to cope.

Signs and symptoms of stress overload

It’s important to learn how to recognize when our stress levels are out of control. The most dangerous thing about stress is how easily it can creep up on us. We get used to it. It starts to feels familiar – even normal. We don’t notice how much it’s affecting us, even as it takes a heavy toll.

The signs and symptoms of stress overload can be almost anything. Stress affects the mind, body, and behavior in many ways, and everyone experiences stress differently.

How do we respond to stress?

The following can be the three most common ways people respond when they’re overwhelmed by stress:
• Foot on the gas – An angry or agitated stress response. You’re heated, keyed up, overly emotional, and unable to sit still.
• Foot on the brake – A withdrawn or depressed stress response. You shut down, space out, and show very little energy or emotion.
• Foot on both – A tense and frozen stress response. You “freeze” under pressure and can’t do anything. You look paralyzed, but under the surface you’re extremely agitated.

Some of the common warning signs and symptoms of stress

The more signs and symptoms you notice in yourself, the closer you may be to stress overload.
Stress Warning Signs and Symptoms
1. Cognitive Symptoms
Memory problems
• Inability to concentrate
• Poor judgment
• Seeing only the negative
• Anxious or racing thoughts
• Constant worrying

2. Emotional Symptoms

• Moodiness
• Irritability or short temper
• Agitation, inability to relax
• Feeling overwhelmed
• Sense of loneliness and isolation
• Depression or general unhappiness

3. Physical Symptoms

• Aches and pains
• Diarrhea or constipation
• Nausea, dizziness
• Chest pain, rapid heartbeat
• Loss of sex drive
• Frequent colds

4. Behavioral Symptoms

• Eating more or less
• Sleeping too much or too little
• Isolating yourself from others
• Procrastinating or neglecting responsibilities
• Using alcohol, cigarettes, or drugs to relax
• Nervous habits (e.g. nail biting, pacing)

Keep in mind that the signs and symptoms of stress can also be caused by other psychological and medical problems. If you’re experiencing any of the warning signs of stress, it’s important to see a doctor for a full evaluation. Your doctor can help you determine whether or not your symptoms are stress-related.

Be Happy – We may become stress free.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Be Happy –Charity is a bliss.

Have you ever noticed that those who are truly very wealthy and successful, are always involved in charities? Many of them are not just writing checks and giving out cash to the first charity that they notice worth. Actually, they are truly involved with charities and they do this by giving their time, money, energy, setting up trusts, and getting involved in events. They really go the distance for a charity they are involved with. It is very likely that some of us may say, "Well, if I had that kind of money - I'd be giving to charity too. I'd have the time to get involved in charities." But guess what - many of the most successful people got involved with charities long before they were rich and successful. And - just because you become rich and successful doesn't mean you have a lot of time on your hands. Instead - many of the most successful and wealthiest people - have to make time for the charity that they are involved with.

You know! There is tremendous power that comes with the act of giving – let’s see how this power is created and how it works. How giving can provide dividends you never thought possible - and why giving doesn't have to involve your wallet. How to achieve your goals and live the life you want by working with the power of your mind and subconscious mind is equally important. It is your will how to accomplish goals you never thought possible.

Understanding the will Of Giving

The will of giving comes from a selfless act - where you simply give from your heart. This act of giving is not tied to any special event, holiday or celebration - it is merely a time when you give from the heart because you want to share what you have, show your appreciation and give because you truly care. There should not be any other motive behind it.

When you give simply from the heart you are saying to the universe, your higher power is that you truly care and want to share what you have. You also intend to say that you don't care if you don't get anything in return, you don't care if no one notices or if no one thanks you. After all that's not why you are doing it. When you do this - the response that you get can be quite overwhelming. It will be as though a thousand hands came to help you even when you didn't ask for help. Things start to fall into place - because those who give from the heart - will get a thousand times the amount that they give.

When you give from the heart, you don't give with the expectation of getting something in return. You can give with the thought that you are sharing - that you are giving because you have so much. You are giving because you know and trust that you will always have what you want so you can afford to give something even before you receive what you seek.

This mere act of giving from the heart and with the full knowledge that you have plenty and with the trust that you will always have more than enough - creates a bond between you and your higher power, spirit, universe, God or whatever you want to call that part of us that we feel is connected to a higher entity. That bond is a trust - in which you are saying: "I know I will always have more than I want so I am now giving something because I want to – fully trusting that I will always have more than what I want - and therefore I can share because I want to." When you do this the universe or the higher power responds by saying - "ah-ha - ___ believes they have so much that they are already willing to share - let's give him/her some more so that they can continue to share." It really does work that way.

But too often we get caught up in our wants and needs, we get selfish - only focusing on ourselves and our own little problems - which when looked at in terms of the bigger picture are really not that severe. Sure there are some of us who have some serious setbacks that we want to overcome - and I'm not trivializing that or any of your own personal concerns. However, we need to look at the needs of those of those around us as well - and then ask ourselves what we can do to help make things better. After all - it's our world - if we don't share how we can help each other and how we can overcome our own setbacks.

If you don't help your neighbor - and if we don't help our neighbor in the hour of his need - how would we ever expect him to help us at the time of our need? There would be no progress because we would all be consumed with our own little world and not take the time to help each other.

Giving is a part of human nature. That's why when we do it we enjoy the process so much. We enjoy seeing the other person smile; we enjoy helping someone else in some small way. It is also true that all of us are not in a position to give a great deal, or to buy the ideal present or to spend a lot of money. But you can give your time. You can give something small, you can make a small gesture to the universe and your higher power - that you believe you will always have what you want and more - you believe so much that you're willing to give and share that even before you receive it.

The Law Of Giving

You may have heard that if you give you will get in return. So you go out and you give and it seems like you get nothing. Then you say - this doesn't work so you stop giving because you're tired and it got you nowhere.

The law of giving exists - and it simply says that if you give you will receive in abundance. But the catch to it is that you have to give from your heart. Sure you've heard that phrase before - but here's what it means. When you give from your heart - you give with no expectations. You give only because you want to give - because you want to share what you have and because you want to help somebody. I know somebody out there is going to say: "Ah- ha! So I can give to help people and I'll get in return. Great - I'll start giving tomorrow." You can't give expecting something in return. Actually, we've been conditioned to give so that we get something in return. It's that old "What's in it for me?" approach - which just doesn't work with the Law of Giving.

Those who are successful - like Paul Newman, Bill Gates, Ted Turner, Warren Buffet - the list goes on and on - are all involved in charities - many of which they worked with before they were successful. Here, skeptics will say: "Yeah but for them it's a great tax write off." But their time isn't - and that they give from their heart - no strings attached because they get nothing in return - or at least they don't go in wanting to get something in return. Just so you know - Bill Gates so far has donated 800-million dollars to charities. Ted Turner is often remembered for billion dollars that he donated to the UN - but in 1994 he donated 200 million dollars to charities and he has his own non-profit organization fighting for endangered species. They all donate money and time - and they give from the heart. When you give – and give from the heart you send out a powerful message that says: You're willing to share what you have and thus the more you have the more you will share. This is what is picked up your subconscious mind, the universe and your higher self. You then are drawn to situations and circumstances that allow you to have more because you will share more. The key is to give from your heart and give before you receive.

How Giving Attracts More

I have an uncle who has done quite well for himself and at age 72 he still runs his company and factory. I remember talking to him recently and he told me about the tough times he endured. He said when he started out he didn't know how things would turn out. But he was always involved in charities and always trying to help those around him. He didn't have a lot of money to give - but he had some time - so he got involved with helping out people in need. Sometimes by getting old clothes from family members to donate, sometimes by collecting tins of food,anything he could do. As he started making some money he would donate a portion to his religious community - he never stopped donating and to this day is still involved in charities. His son who is a very successful doctor who visits Africa once or twice a year to perform free surgery on those who are need - you could say like father like son – but the act of giving simply from their heart has catapulted them to success.

Both my uncle and his son said they give because they believed they had so much - and they just wanted to share what they had. There was no other motive. They have been rewarded ten times over - they both live very comfortable lives. I have countless stories that I can share with you about how people who give always get more in return - but the key is that they give without expecting anything - they simply give - knowing and trusting that they will always have more than what they need.

Now we all can't perform surgery - but we can give a little of our time - since we all have they same amount - surely you can spare an hour or two on the weekends. If you go shopping - buy something small for someone - with the belief that you will always have more than you need. You can even buy something for yourself with that same belief. You can give a small amount to charity – with the complete belief that you will always have more than you need. You will enjoy buying and you will surely be happy by giving away the extra things which you bought with intention of giving away. It is all charity in disguise and charity is a bliss.

Be Happy – Charity is a bliss.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Be Happy – Improve Your Memory

THESE days, people are losing their memory power faster, especially students. Memory techniques are related to similar ways of understanding a difficult subject or a concept. With fierce competition amongst students to score higher and excel, schools have recognized the need for an in-built memory-training program, as a part of the regular curriculum. Memory training programs not only help the students perform well academically, but also assist them in all walks of life. Every student is a born genius. It’s not that they cannot perform well, it’s just that they are unaware of how to do it.

The art of recalling is more a product of self-belief than that of pain-staking rules and regulations. Students undergoing these courses have benefited in unlimited ways and have expanded their ability to remember things far better than they ever thought possible. “Social Science is no more a burden, and I am relaxed during my exams now because I know I can retain whatever I have read,” confesses a student of Class 11 at PS Senior Secondary School, who has undergone memory-building coaching.

Academies for sharpening one’s memory train students to become record-holders. Our brain has more than 100,000 million brain cells but it is estimated that an average individual uses only 5-10% of it. Even a genius like Einstein used only 15-18% of it. So it is really a skill that is developed and not something people are born with. Techniques for a sharp memory can be suggested as follow:

a) Natural Memory Technique:
It is a simple and effective practice. All you need to do is just recollect what you’ve done the entire day after every meal. Initially, it may not be as easy to recall, but gradually you will be able to recollect threadbare.

b) Mnemonics Technique:

Associating data with easy-to-remember concepts will help you remember it better. For instance, one can recollect the colours of the rainbow because of the acronym VIBGYOR associated with it. In a similar fashion of abbreviating, you can keep in mind all the topics of you text books.

c) Pegging technique:

This technique helps you remember a long list of things by linking the words to the numbers they rhyme with and by creating a vibrant image of the word. For instance the usual rhyming scheme is: 1 and bun, 2 and shoe, 3 and tree, 4 and paw, 5 and hive, 6 and bricks, 7 and heaven, 8 and gate, 9 and hen, 10 and den.
For example, you could remember the name of the Greek philosophers as:
1) Parmenides – a bun topped with grated yellow parmesan cheese.
2) Heraclitus – A shoe worn by Heracles (Greek Hercules) glowing with a bright light.
3) Empedocles – A tree from which the M-shaped Mcdonalds arches hang hooking up a bicle pedal.
d) Long Term Memory Technique:
In order to register whatever you have learnt till your annual exams. This is a necessary method. After you have finished studying for the day, review the same material:
o After 1 day
o After 1 week
o After 1 month
o After 3 months
o After 6 months
o Finally during your exams if you read about the secrets to having a great memory you will know, that we must take what we want to remember, make it outstanding using our imagination, associate it to something we already know and then condition its recall until we can’t get it wrong. “I realised that students in my class find it difficult to remember scientific terms, I applied the mnemonics technique and was surprised to see every student score better in the particular subject,” reveals Vice Principal of Convent Higher Education School.

e) Tips To Improve Your Memory Factor:

o Sip water during the course of studies to improve your concentration.
o Include vegetables like okra (lady finger) and Brahmi leaves in you diet.
o Enhance your memory capacity by including chess and puzzles in your fun activities.
o Take a ten-minute break every hour while studying for efficient retention.
o Switch subjects every two hours to prevent your mind from getting bored. This will also prevent you from over-burdening your memory with one subject.
o Sit straight with your feet on the floor (preferably a rough surface) and arms parallel.
o Pop in some potato chips and glucose to boost your energy.
o Register the notes in your subconscious while reading your lesson by scribbling the key points on a notepad

f) Don’t ever…

o Frequently change your study place. Stick to a particular room to help you mind be comfortable to a specific space.
o Avoid walking while studying to keep away from distraction.
o Listening to music, lying on the bed, chewing gum while studying will not help.
o Refrain from reading aloud as it results in energy loss. After you’re done with learning, review your notes. Don’t recall.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Be happy - Do Charity

Mother Teresa says to us, ‘Charity to be fruitful must cost us. love, it is necessary to give: to give it is necessary to be free from selfishness.’ When we hear the word "charity" we think of love towards those who are in need, love visible as in service. We hear the word everyday; we use it and we may also practise it in different forms. But what does charity really mean? According to the definition of charity as love towards the needy, we need to find out first what loving means to us at this very moment. The nature of love is always to reach beyond self. It is not satisfied with loving self, but it strives to love others and be united to others, and tries to meet the needs to the extent possible without any reciprocal interest.
Charity means the act of giving money, goods or time to the unfortunate, either directly or by means of a charitable trust or other worthy cause. Charitable giving as a religious act or duty is referred to as alms-giving or alms. The name stems from the most obvious expression of the virtue of charity is giving the objects of it the means they need to survive.

The poor, particularly widows and orphans, and the sick and disabled, are generally regarded as the proper objects of charity. Some groups regard charity as being properly directed towards other members of their group. Although giving to those nearly connected to oneself is sometimes called charity -- as in the saying "Charity begins at home" -- normally charity denotes giving to those not related, with filial piety and like terms for supporting one's family and friends. Indeed, treating those related to the giver as if they were strangers in need of charity has led to the figure of speech "as cold as charity" -- providing for one's relatives as if they were strangers, without affection.

Most forms of charity are concerned with providing food, water, clothing, and shelter, and tending the ill, but other actions may be performed as charity: visiting the imprisoned or the home-bound, dowries for poor women, ransoming captives, educating orphans. Donations to causes that would benefit the unfortunate indirectly, as donations to cancer research hope to benefit cancer victims, are also charity.

The recipient of charity may offer to pray for the benefactor; indeed, in medieval Europe, it was customary to feast the poor at the funeral in return for their prayers for the deceased. Institutions may commemorate benefactors by displaying their names, up to naming buildings or even the institution itself after the benefactors. If the recipient makes material return of more than a token value, the transaction is normally not called charity.

Institutions evolved to carry out the labor of assisting the poor, and these institutions are called charities. These include orphanages, food banks, religious orders dedicated to care of the poor, hospitals, organizations that visit the home-bound and imprisoned, and many others. Such institutions allow those whose time or inclination does not lend themselves to directly care for the poor to enable others to do so, both by providing money for the work and supporting them while they do the work. Institutions can also attempt to more effectively sort out the actually needy from those who fraudulently claim charity. Early Christians particularly recommended the care of the unfortunate to the charge of the local bishop. In Islam this is called Zakat, and is one of the five pillars upon which the Muslim religion is based.

It is pure joy of giving, which includes much more than material things. This intention of giving can have many faces, like in a warm smile to strangers, a personal thank-you-letter, an encouraging hug, an unexpected phone call, a thoughtful word of appreciation, a bonding with a person in grief, a prayer for the healing of others, a heartfelt forgiving when you are wronged. All this is done not out of duty or responsibility but out of the abundance of warmth and love you feel welling up inside you. And the more you give out, the more flows back in; that is the joy of love in action, the manifestation of charity. As long as you feel compelled to do something because it is your duty or because you want something in return, there is no love.

When one truly loves there must be freedom, not only from the other person but from oneself. Charity can come into being only when there is total self-abandonment. It does not come as the result of any effort. Like a flower that spreads its perfume, it blooms for everybody. Whether one is near or far away, it is all the same to the flower because it is full of that fragrance and shares it with everybody. Likewise, fire heats every one without any discrimination. It is depending on us how we use it. We may ascertain that our life becomes a spark in the flame of charity, so that the warmth and light of this loving fire may shine ever more brightly and sustain hope in the hearts of mankind.

However, many lessons have to be learned before selfishness is transformed into the ability to truly love others. There is no greater mystery than the mystery of love itself. Mother Teresa said: "I do not think I have any special qualities. I don't claim anything for the work. It is His work. I am like a little pencil in His hand, that is all. He does the thinking. He does the writing. The pencil has nothing to do with it. The pencil has only to allow itself to be used."

True charity emanates from sound judgment of the intellect rather than a weak emotion of the mind. In its purest form, charity has the distinction of benefiting the receiver as well as the donor.

Victor Hugo in his novel ‘Less Miserables’ highlights the benefaction that charity brings to the receiver. A convict had escaped from prison and sought shelter for the night. The priest obliged, gave him supper and a bed to sleep. In the middle of the night he decamped with the silver plates of the house. The next morning the police who had caught him brought him in. the priest feigned surprise and asked the policeman; “Why did you harass him? I gifted the plates to him last night.” The policeman apologized and left. The convict was astounded. To crown it all, the priest picked up two solid silver candlestick stands from his desk and gave them to the convict with these words: remember, life is to give, not to take. The convict took them and departed. Thence, he was transformed, living a life of service and sacrifice. Such would be the outcome of true charity.

Likewise, the donor is blessed with the effect of charity. Charity is a synonym for prosperity. So is sacrifice for prosperity. So is sacrifice for success. The way to gain anything is to lose it. The more you run after wealth, the more it recedes. You crave for it, and it eludes you. Leave for it, and it eludes you. Leave it alone, and it follows you. Work earnestly, dispassionately; the reward of work shall court you.

The phenomenon of colors illustrates this law of life. Light is constituted of seven colors. When an object appears blue when it actually gives away blue and takes in the other six. It appears in the colour it parts with. An object gains the color it gives away! You gain what you give away, what you sacrifice. Not what you take. Develop the spirit of dispassion, renunciation in life. You turn pure, divine. And when you amass wealth you turn impure, demonic. Oliver Goldsmith wrote: where wealth accumulates, men decay.

Social service is indeed noble trait. But these scattered units can in no way solve the problem of poverty and misery in the world. Hence the world needs not just bouts of social service but education and dissemination of social consciousness among people. That one should empathize, share and live in harmony with fellow beings. The idea of social consciousness needs to be introduced at the level of primary schools for children to grow with that concept and gradually inculcated in families at home. With the dawn of social consciousness the mist of social service disappears and every individual becomes a social worker.

Just imagine a country devoid of literacy barring a group of literates. The residual literates have to choose one of two options: each of them starts teaching people individually. Or start schools for teachers’ training. And these teachers in turn produce more teachers. The former method can provide only a limited satisfaction for educating a few pockets in the country while the latter can gradually cover the entire country to solve the problem of illiteracy.

Similarly, social workers and their social work can only create pockets of relief while the perennial problem of poverty and misery persists. The problem can be solved only through mass education and dissemination of social consciousness. Vedanta, the ancient philosophy of India, educates and inculcates this spirit of social consciousness in human beings. If we help in spreading education amongst the mass, we do charity in right direction like we are donating something to some needy. It depends upon us how we do charity in our life. But it definitely brings happiness in our life as well as for those lives who are helped by us timely.

Be Happy – Do Charity.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Be Happy – Don’t Concentrate Too Much On Your Failures

It's true, "Slow and steady wins the race." But the tragedy is that most people never even get in the race, and many of those who do hope that success comes easily and swiftly.

When it doesn't, they're out of the race, before it really begins. What they don't realize is that the decision to be unstoppable is never made just once. It is made moment by moment, again and again. In our earthly lives, setbacks are inevitable. In fact, they're evidence that we're doing something. The more mistakes we make, the greater our chance of success. Failures indicate a willingness to experiment and take risks.

Unstoppable women and men have learned that each failure brings wisdom and insight that will take them one step closer to achieving their dreams. When we focus on one unstoppable moment at a time and stay the course, the end result will take care of itself.

It's important to remind ourselves that failure is an event, not a person. If you don't achieve your 30-day goal, does that make you a failure? If you don't get a promotion at work, does that make you a failure? If you get married and then divorced, does that make you a failure? Of course not!

Failure doesn't characterize who you are. It is simply an event that happens to you. And when you continue to move forward, despite difficult experiences, you have already won!

You need to find the gift in the setback. The next time the outcome you had hoped for doesn't
transpire, look for the gift. Ask yourself the following questions immediately:

1. What can I learn from what happened?
2. What am I grateful for about this experience?
3. What are the potential benefits of this experience?
4. What is the best way for me to move forward?

Commit to finding the gift in any setback. And in advance, tell yourself that you will never, never, never quit. If you don't give up, you simply cannot fail. Not only will you achieve your dreams, but the combination of your commitment, courage, and faith will rise as the greatest triumph of all.

Be sure, you will not concentrate upon failures too much – it is nice to examine why you failed and you may take corrective action not to repeat your mistakes so that you may succeed in your next attempts. If you continue to concentrate upon your past failures, they will take much of your time which can be productive for your fresh attempts. By concentrating too much, you will not be able to use the time and energies for future plans and they too will add to your failures. That is why it is necessary to rejuvenate yourself after every failure by thinking the strategy afresh.

Be Happy – Don’t Concentrate Too Much On Your Failures

Monday, July 20, 2009

Be Happy - Achieve Perfection With Yoga

Yoga of self-perfection synthesises the collective potential of traditional disciplines like Bhakti, Gyan and Karma yogas, to reorient human nature into bringing the highest octave of consciousness. Each of the other yogic systems develops a particular faculty.

In Bhakti yoga, for instance, one approaches God with unconditional love, devotion and veneration. It is a real, genuine search after the Lord, a search beginning, continuing, and ending in love. One single moment of the madness of extreme love of God brings us eternal freedom. Bhakti is intense love of God. When a man gets it, he loves all, hates none. He becomes satisfied forever. This love cannot be reduced to any earthly benefit because as worldly desires last, that kind of love does not come. Bhakti is greater than Karma, greater than Yoga because these are intended for an object in view, while Bhakti is its own fruition is own means and its own end.

The best definition of Bhakti, however, is given by Prahlada; "That deathless love which the ignorant have for the fleeting objects of the senses-as I keep meditating on thee, may that love not slip: I am poor, I have nothing, So I take this body of mine and place it at your feet. Do not give me up, O Lord." such is the prayer proceeding out of the depths of the heart. To him who has experienced it, this eternal sacrifice of the self unto the Beloved Lord is higher by far than all wealth and power, than even all soaring thoughts of enjoyment.

The peace of the aspirant's calm resignation is a peace that passeth all understanding and is of all incomparable value. His self surrender is a state of the mind in which it has no interests and naturally knows nothing that is opposed to it. In this states of sublime resignation, everything in the shape of attachment goes away completely, except that one all-absorbing love for Him whom all things live and moves and have their being. This attachment of love for God is indeed one that does not bind the soul but effectively breaks all its bondages. As oil poured from one vessel to another falls in an unbroken line, so when the mind in an unbroken stream thinks of the mind and heart to the Lord, with an inseparable attachment, is indeed the highest manifestation of man's love for God.

It is in love that religion exists and not in ceremony. Unless a man is pure in body and mind, his coming into a temple, mosque or church and worshipping or praying is useless. The prayers of those who are pure in mind and body will be answered by God, and those who are impure and yet try to teach religion to others will fail in the end. External worship is only symbol of internal worship, but internal worship and purity are the real things. Without them, external worship would be of no avail. Therefore, you must all try to remember this.

This is the gist of all worship: to be pure and to do good to others. He who sees God in the poor, in the weak, and in the diseased, really worships God. And if he sees God only in the image, his worship is but preliminary. He who has served and helped one poor man seeing God in him, without thinking of his caste or creed or race or anything, with him God is more pleased than with the man who sees Him only in his respective religious places.

Gyan Yoga leads you to liberation of soul. Great is the tenacity with which man clings to the senses. Yet, however substantial he may think the external world in which he lives and moves, there comes a time in the lives of individuals and of races when involuntarily they ask "Is this real?" To the person who never finds moment to question the credentials and of his senses, whose every moment is occupied with some sort of sense enjoyment-even to him death comes, and he also is compelled to ask, "Is this real?" Religion begins with this question and ends with its answer. Even in the remote past, where recorded history cannot help us, in the mysterious light of mythology, back in the dim twilight of civilization, we find the same question was asked: "What becomes of this? What is real?"

One of the most poetical of the Upanishads the KATHA Upanishad, begins with the inquiry: "When a man dies, there is a dispute. One party declares that he has gone forever; the other insists that he is still living. Which is true?" Various answers have been given. The whole sphere of metaphysics philosophy, and religion is really filled with various answers to this question. At the same time, attempts have been made to suppress it, to put a stop to the unrest of the mind, which asks: "What is beyond? What is real?" But as long as death remains, all these attempts at suppression will prove to be unsuccessful. We may talk about seeing nothing beyond and keeping all our hopes and aspirations confined to the present moment, and struggle hard not to think of anything beyond the world of the senses. And perhaps everything outside helps to keep us limited within its narrow bounds. The whole world may combine to prevent us from broadening out beyond the present. Yet, as long as there is death, the question must come again and again: "Is death the end of all these things to which we are clinging, as if they were the most real of all realities, the most substantial of all substances?" The world vanishes in a moment and is gone. Standing on the brink of a precipice beyond which is the infinite, yawning chasm, every mind, however hardened, is bound to recoil and ask, "Is this real?" The hope of a lifetime built up little by little with all the energies of a great mind, vanish in a second. Are they real? This question must be answered. Time never listens its power; on the other hand, it adds strength to it.

On the one side, therefore, is the bold assertion that this is all nonsense. But along with it, there is the most hopeful assertions that there is some way out. On the other hand, practical men tell us: "Don't bother your heads about such nonsense religion and metaphysics. Live here. This is a very bad world indeed, but make best out of it." Go on applying patch after patch, until everything is lost and you are mass of patchwork. This is what is called practical life. Those who are satisfied with this patchwork will never come to religion. One curious fact, present in the midst of all our joys and sorrows, difficulties and struggles, is that we are surely journeying towards freedom. The question was practically this: "What is this universe? From what does it arise? Into what does it go?' And the answer was, "In freedom it raises, in freedom it resets, and into freedom it melts away."

Some inner voice tells us that we are free. But if we attempt to realize that freedom, to make it manifest, we find the difficulties almost insuperable. Yet, in spite of that, it insists on asserting itself inwardly: "I am Free, I am Free." And if you study all the various religion of the world you will find this idea expressed. Freedom is knowledge.

Karma yoga offers every activity to the Divine in spirit of selfless service, without any expectation. The grandest idea in the religion of the Vedanta is that we may reach the same goal by different paths; and these paths generalized into four--viz. those of work, love, psychology and knowledge. But you must, at the same time, remember that these divisions are not very marked and quite exclusive of each other. Each blends into the other. But according to the type which prevails, we name the divisions. It is not that you can find men who have no other faculty than that of work, nor that you can find men who are no more than devoted worshippers only, nor that there are men who have no more than mere knowledge. These divisions are made in accordance with the type or the tendency that may be seen to prevail in a man. We have found that, in the end, all these four paths converge and become one. All religions and all methods of work and worship lead us to one and the same goal.

Our goal is freedom. Everything that we perceive around us is struggling towards freedom, from the atom to the man, from the insentient, lifeless particle of matter to the highest existence on earth, the human soul. The whole universe is in fact the result of this struggle for freedom. In all combinations every particle is trying to go on its own way, to fly from the other particles; but the others are holding it in check. Our Earth is trying to fly away from the Sun, and the Moon from the Earth. Everything has a tendency to infinite dispersion. All that we see in the universe has for its basis this one struggle towards freedom; it is under the impulse of this tendency that the saint prays and the robber robs. When the line of action taken is not a proper one, we call it evil; and when the manifestation of it is proper and high, we call it good. But the impulse is the same, the struggle towards freedom. The saint is oppressed with the knowledge of his condition of bondage, and he wants to get rid of it; so he worships God. The thief is oppressed with the idea that he does not possess certain things, and he tries to get rid of that want, to obtain freedom from it; so he steals. Freedom is the one goal of all nature, sentient or insentient; and, consciously or unconsciously, everything is struggling towards that goal. The freedom which the saint seeks is very different from that which the robber seeks; the freedom loved by the saint leads him to the enjoyment of infinite, unspeakable bliss, while that on which the robber has set his heart only forges other bonds for his soul.

The manifestation of this struggle towards freedom is to be found in every religion. It is the groundwork of all morality, of unselfishness, which means getting rid of the idea that men are the same as their little body. When we see a man doing good work, helping others, it means that he cannot be confined within the limited circle of "me and mine." There is no limit to this getting out of selfishness. All the great systems of ethics preach absolute unselfishness as the goal. Supposing this absolute unselfishness can be reached by a man, what becomes of him? He is no more the little Mr. So-and-so; he has acquired infinite expansion. That little personality which he had before is now lost to him for ever; he has become infinite, and the attainment of this infinite expansion is indeed the goal of all religions and of all moral and philosophical teachings. It is the personalistic idea, when he hears this idea philosophically put, gets frightened. At the same time, if he preaches morality, he after all teaches the very same idea himself. He puts no limit to the unselfishness of man. Suppose a man becomes perfectly unselfish under the personalistic system, how are we to distinguish him from the perfected ones in other systems? He has become one with the universe and to become that is the goal of all; only the poor personalistic has not the courage to follow out his own reasoning to its right conclusion. Karma-Yoga is the attaining through unselfish work of that freedom which is the goal of all human nature. Every selfish action, therefore, retards our reaching the goal, and every unselfish action takes us towards the goal; that is why the only definition that can be given of morality is this: That which is selfish is immoral, and that which is unselfish is moral.

But if you come to details, the matter will not be seen to be quite so simple. For instance, environment often makes the details different. The same action under one set of circumstances may be unselfish, and under another set quite selfish. So we can give only a general definition, and leave the details to be worked out by taking into consideration the differences in time, place, and circumstances. In one country one kind of conduct is considered moral, and in another the very same is immoral, because the circumstances differ. The goal of all nature is freedom, and freedom is to be attained only by perfect unselfishness; every thought, word, or deed that is unselfish takes us towards the goal and, as such, is called moral. That definition, you will find, holds good in every religion and every system of ethics. In some systems of thought morality is derived from a Superior Being--God. If you ask why a man ought to do this and not that, their answer is: "Because such is the command of God." But whatever be the source from which it is derived, their code of ethics also has the same central idea--not to think of self but to give up self. And yet some persons, in spite of this high ethical idea, are frightened at the thought of having to give up their little personalities. We may ask the man who clings to the idea of little personalities to consider the case of a person who has become perfectly unselfish, who has no thought for himself, who does no deed for himself, who speaks no word for himself, and then say where his "himself" is. That "himself" is known to him only so long as he thinks, acts, or speaks for himself. If he is only conscious of others, of the universe, and of the all, where is his "himself?" It is gone for ever.

Karma-Yoga, therefore, is a system of ethics and religion intended to attain freedom through unselfishness and by good works. The Karma-yogi need not believe in any doctrine whatever. He may not believe even in God, may not ask what his soul is, nor think of any metaphysical speculation. He has got his own special aim of realizing selflessness; and he has to work it out himself. Every moment of his life must be realization, because he has to solve by mere work, without the help of doctrine or theory, the very same problem to which the Jnâni applies his reason,inspiration and his love.

Now comes the next question: What is this work? What is this doing good to the world? Can we do good to the world? In an absolute sense, no; in a relative sense, yes. No permanent or everlasting good can be done to the world; if it could be done, the world would not be this world. We may satisfy the hunger of a man for five minutes, but he will be hungry again. Every pleasure with which we supply a man may be seen to be momentary. No one can permanently cure this ever-recurring fever of pleasure and pain. Can any permanent happiness be given to the world? In the ocean we cannot raise a wave without causing a hollow somewhere else. The sum total of the good things in the world has been the same throughout in its relation to man's need and greed. It cannot be increased or decreased. Take the history of the human race as we know today. Do we not find the same miseries and the same happiness, the same pleasures and pains, the same differences in position? Are not some rich, some poor, some high, some low, some healthy, some unhealthy? All this was just the same with the Egyptians, the Greeks, Indians and the Romans in ancient times as it is with the Americans today. So far as history is known, it has always been the same; yet at the same time we find that running along with all these incurable differences of pleasure and pain, there has ever been the struggle to alleviate them. Every period of history has given birth to thousands of men and women who have worked hard to smooth the passage of life for others. And how far have they succeeded? We can only play at driving the ball from one place to another. We take away pain from the physical plane, and it goes to the mental one. It is like that picture in Dante's hell where the misers were given a mass of gold to roll up a hill. Every time they rolled it up a little, it again rolled down. All our talks about the millennium are very nice as schoolboy's stories, but they are no better than that. All nations that dream of the millennium also think that, of all peoples in the world, they will have the best of it then for themselves. This is the wonderfully unselfish idea of the millennium!

We cannot add happiness to this world; similarly we cannot add pain to it either. The sum total of the energies of pleasure and pain displayed here on earth will be the same throughout. We just push it from this side to the other side, and from that side to this; but it will remain the same, because to remain so is its very nature. This ebb and flow, this rising and falling is in the world's very nature; it would be as logical to hold otherwise as to say that we may have life without death. This is complete nonsense, because the very idea of life implies death, and the very idea of pleasure implies pain. The lamp is constantly burning out, and that is its life. If you want to have life, you have to die every moment for it. Life and death are only different expressions of the same thing looked at from different standpoints; they are the falling and rising of the same wave, and the two form one whole. One looks at the "fall" side and becomes a pessimist, another looks at the "rise" side and becomes an optimist. When a boy is going to school and his father and mother are taking care of him, everything seems blessed to him; his wants are simple, he is a great optimist. But the old man, with his varied experience, becomes calmer and is sure to have his warmth considerably cooled down. So old nations, with signs of decay all around them, are apt to be less hopeful than new nations. There is a proverb in India, "A thousand years a city, and a thousand years a forest." This change of city into forest and vice versa is going on everywhere, and it makes people optimists or pessimists according to the side they see of it.

The next idea we take up is the idea of equality. These millennium ideas have been great motive powers to work. Those who preached the idea first were of course ignorant fanatics, but very sincere. In modern times this millennial aspiration takes the form of equality--of liberty, equality, and fraternity. This is also fanaticism. True equality has never been and never can be on earth. How can we all be equal here? This impossible kind of equality implies total death. What makes this world what it is? Lost balance. In the primal state, which is called chaos, there is perfect balance. How do all the formative forces of the universe come then? By struggling, competition, conflict. Suppose that all the particles of matter were held in equilibrium, would there be then any process of creation? We know from science that it is impossible. Disturb a sheet of water, and there you find every particle of the water trying to become calm again, one rushing against the other; and in the same way all the phenomena which we call the universe---all things therein--are struggling to get back to the state of perfect balance. Again a disturbance comes, and again we have combination and creation. Inequality is the very basis of creation. At the same time the forces struggling to obtain equality are as much a Necessity of creation as those which destroy it.

Absolute equality, that which means a perfect balance of all the struggling forces in all the planes, can never be in this world. Before you attain that state, the world will have become quite unfit for any kind of life, and no one will be there. We find, therefore, that all these ideas of the millennium and of absolute equality are not only impossible but also that, if we try to carry them out, they will lead us surely enough to the day of destruction. What makes the difference between man and man? It is largely the difference in the brain. Nowadays no one but a lunatic will say that we are all born with the same brain power. We come into the world with unequal endowments; we come as greater men or as lesser men, and there is no getting away from that pre-natally determined condition. Absolute non-differentiation is death. So long as this world lasts, differentiation there will and must be, and the millennium of perfect equality will come only when a cycle of creation comes to its end. Before that, equality cannot be. Yet this idea of realizing the millennium is a great motive power. Just as inequality is necessary for creation itself so the struggle to limit it is also necessary. If there were no struggle to become free and get back to God, there would be no creation either. It is the difference between these two forces that determines the nature of the motives of men. There will always be these motives to work, some tending towards bondage and others towards freedom.
This world's wheel within wheel is a terrible mechanism; if we put our hands in it, as soon as we are caught we are gone. We all think that when we have done a certain duty, we shall be at rest; but before we have done a part of that duty, another is already in waiting. We are all being dragged along by this mighty, complex world-machine. There are only two ways out of it; one is to give up all concern with the machine, to let it go and stand aside, to give up our desires. That is very easy to say, but is almost impossible to do. We do not know whether in twenty millions of men one can do that. The other way is to plunge into the world and learn the secret of work, and that is the way of Karma-Yoga. Do not fly away from the wheels of the world-machine, but stand inside it and learn the secret of work. Through proper work done inside, it is also possible to come out. Through this machinery itself is the way out.

We have now seen what work is. It is a part of nature's foundation and goes on always. Those that believe in God understand this better, because they know that God is not such an incapable being as will need our help. Although this universe will go on always, our goal is freedom, our goal is unselfishness; and according to Karma-Yoga, that goal is to be reached through work. All ideas of making the world perfectly happy may be good as motive powers for fanatics; but we must know that fanaticism brings forth as much evil as good. The Karma-Yogi asks why you require any motive to work other than the inborn love of freedom. Be beyond the common worldly motives. "To work you have the right, but not to the fruits thereof." Man can train himself to know and to practice that, says the Karma-Yogi. When the idea of doing good becomes a part of his very being, then he will not seek for any motive outside. Let us do good because it is good to do good; he who does good work even in order to get to heaven binds himself down, says the Karma-Yogi. Any work that is done with any the least selfish motive, instead of making us free, forges one more chain for our feet.

So the only way is to give up all the fruits of work, to be unattached to them. Know that this world is not we, nor are we this world; that we are really not the body; that we really do not work. We are the Self, eternally at rest and at peace. Why should we be bound by anything? It is very good to say that we should be perfectly non-attached, but what is the way to do it? Every good work we do without any ulterior motive, instead of forging a new chain, will break one of the links in the existing chains. Every good thought that we send to the world without thinking of any return, will be stored up there and break one link in the chain and make us purer and purer, until we become the purest of mortals. Yet all this may seem to be rather quixotic and too philosophical, more theoretical than practical.

Now we consider yoga as a whole. Yoga aims at the total perfection of not one but all parts of the being. It directs the flow of consciousness from soul to the lower levels – rather than begin from the bottom up – purifying as it descends. This can prove effective only by the instrumentality of like-minded souls, jointly engaged in the endeavour. The core group can act as catalyst in ‘Godward’ progress. It strips successive layers of the body and mind of every vestige of inertia, falsehood and lower nature, down to the very innards of its tiniest cell, in order to unclog channels for the descent of divine consciousness. Once empowered, it taps into and co-opts nature to help hasten its ongoing evolution of divinised beings.

Every voluntary or involuntary effort, activity or drive to better individual or community life, is yoga. It is the nature operating through human agency to materialise progress and growth. As sentient being, man is capable of cooperating with this inexorable evolutionary movement and brings about desired changes in a compressed time-frame, which, if left to it, would have taken eons.

The key is integral yoga with a three-fold approach: intense aspiration for the Divine, rejection of all that is inimical to the path and total surrender or opening oneself to the Divine. It perceives Godhead as the fundamental unity permeating every atom of diverse creation, or the centrality of the spirit underlying nature, growth, life, material and non-material phenomena. It aims at nothing less than the transmutation of matter, a tectonic shift from the earlier quest of sages to help man rise above his mundane limitations. It has been long realised that unless basic fault lines and destructive patterns ingrained in the human psyche were eradicated, the world would never be free of strife. That virtually implied recasting the flawed genetic script before human-kind was rid of its demons of base passions and impulses, lying at the root of global unrest today.

Be Happy – we can achieve perfection with yoga also.