My new year’s message last year was ‘I wish you a new year and new decade overflowing with abundance & purposefulness’. Having gone through perhaps the most ‘interesting’ year of our life, I wonder if this wish had an impact or not. I suppose it depends on how we look at 2020. While many of us had challenges in our jobs, businesses, finances, relationships and health, it is important to reflect on and find the hidden gifts.Continue reading “If you want God to laugh, tell her your plans.”
Daffodils – William Wordsworth
As you listen to this poem, reflect on the wonders of nature and let it heal your pensive mood or broken heart.
I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud
I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.
The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed—and gazed—but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:
For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.
About the poet — William Wordsworth (1770 — 1850) was a major English Romantic poet who helped to launch the Romantic Age in English literature. He was born in Cockermouth, England. His poetry was mainly focused on the nature, children, the poor, common people. Wordsworth was Britain’s Poet Laureate from 1843 until his death in 1850.
For Neil deGrasse Tyson, its increasing knowledge and reducing suffering daily, that drives hime? Reflect on what drives you everyday.
In the last 8 blog posts in the ‘purpose quest series’, we explored how the pandemic impacted eight important pillars for purposeful living; spiritual, mental, emotional, relational, physical (health), financial, environmental and societal. Let’s explore the ninth pillar, the ‘temporal’ aspect in this blog post. As in the past eight blog posts let me attempt to describe my personal experience during the pandemic.
The word ‘Temporal’ has two broad applications; relating to worldly as opposed to spiritual affairs (secular) and relating to time. I use the word in relation to the use of time. The temporal aspect of purposeful relates to the use of limited time. The purposeful person attempts to utilise most of the time for purposeful activity, which requires letting go of non-purposeful activity.
The last eight weekly blog posts in the ‘purposeful quest’ series illustrated how my time was allocated to purposeful activity in spiritual, mental, emotional, relational, physical (health), financial, ecological and temporal areas. These activities took most of my waking time and there was rarely any time remaining for non-purposeful activity during the approximately 16 hours of waking time.
The sense I make from this reflection is that the pandemic gave me so much opportunities to be purposeful, that it left me with almost no time for non-purposeful activities. This way of life has kept me occupied in meaningful and energising activity, giving me inner success, happiness and peace. My purpose is to inspire others to live a purposeful life and I hope this series of blog posts will inspire you too to live a purposeful life and find Success happiness and peace.
Robin Sharma – on the dangers of your devise and other non-value adding addictions on your success and how to gain monomaniacal focus, using practical and neurological information.
As you listen to this powerful speech by Robin Sharma, reflect on steps you can take to kill the distractions of your life, build purposeful habits and give life and energy to your special talent … to achieve mastery purposefully.
Can empathy be developed or Liberated? As you watch this video, reflect on this questions. Consider how important empathy is for leadership success. Is there an ideal amount of empathy? Could empathy be too much or two little? What steps would you take to liberate the ideal amount of empathy from within you for your leadership success.
The following process can be used to create a learning experience for your team using this video.
Step 1 – A moderator (an expert from your company) to open the session, explaining the importance of the session.
Step 2 – Show the video – let participants absorb, take notes and write down questions to ask later
Step 3 – Have a Q&A session and a discussion
Step 4 – Agree on actions to be taken based on the video
Step 5 – Participants to say how the session was useful.
In the last 7 blog posts in the ‘purpose quest series’, we explored how the pandemic impacted six important pillars for purposeful living; spiritual, mental, emotional, relational, physical (health), financial and environmental. Let’s explore the eight pillar, the societal aspect in this blog post. As in the past seven blog posts let me attempt to describe my personal experience during the pandemic.
With lockdowns being imposed, offices closed, and people starting to work from home, my clients either took the assigned transformational work online or postponed them. This gave me the illusion that there will be a lot of free time. Since I was in Dhaka, while engaging with the foreign ministry and the high commission to arrange repatriation flights, I joined my friend I was staying with to distribute dry rations to people who were financially affected due to lockdowns. In addition I arranged some help for some relatives and friends who were looking for financial assistance and guidance.
To help with the psychological challenges faced by many, my team in Dhaka helped me to produce some videos with mental tips to deal with challenges and anxiety releasing meditation. While using social media to get these to people who needed it we started conducting free webinars to help people deal with the present and gear up for the future. After returning to Sri Lanka I had the opportunity to join my team to conduct psychological first aid for the medical staff of the Infectious Diseases Hospital (IDH), the command center fighting the pandemic in Sri Lanka.
I believe most of the above opportunities were provided to me to help be purposeful during the pandemic. My purpose to inspire others to live a purposeful life and these opportunities helped me share the idea of ‘purposefulness’ and show how it can help to make sense of the pandemic, deal with anxiety & stress and adjust their way of life to respond positively. While all these were related to giving, my time without any financial benefit, I enjoyed the happiness of giving, learning & building relationships in the process. I feel purposeful.
Eric Berne’s – Transactional Analysis presented.
As you read this quote by Sir Albert Einstein, reflect on a baby step you can take to go towards a simple and unassuming manner of life that has potential to have a positive impact on body and mind.
In the last 6 blog posts in the ‘purpose quest series’, we explored how the pandemic impacted six important pillars for purposeful living; spiritual, mental, emotional, relational, health and money. Let’s explore the seventh pillar, the ecological aspect in this blog post. As in the past six blog posts let me attempt to describe my personal experience during the pandemic.
With lockdowns being imposed, offices closed, and people starting to work from home vehicles movement reduced drastically. With airports restricting flights there were less flights in the sky. With demand for non-essential products reducing factories were operating at lower capacity reducing environmental damage. All this made the air cleaner, water cleaner, skies bluer and grass greener.
Unlike in the earlier six aspects, there was not much for me to do, the earth was healing itself. I had to only participate by using the freshness for my well being and helping others to use this Knowladge to make sensei of the positive aspects of the pandemic. Therefore I used the webinars I was conducting and conversations I was having with people to show these benefits and to use this opportunity to adjust lifestyles, so that even after the pandemic, we live in a manner that is beneficial to the environment.
With life coming back to normal in Sri Lanka, I am concerned to see that the amount vehicles on the road have gone back to pre-pandemic levels. Our airways are still clean as the flights are still restricted, but with the envisaged opening up of the skies end of this month, the air pollution levels are likely to start increasing again. Work from home is getting lesser, and in person activities are increasing. I am attempting to keep at least half of my learning experience delivered online even when things are back to normal. I need the other half to interact with people as we cant be totally devoid of human interactions to help them in their learning, growth and transformation.
So lets continue to communicate and role model to help people at least adjust to a mid-way level between total lockdowns and total free movement with their free will so that we can bring this planet to liveable conditions. If not nature will hit back with a bigger pandemic and will keep doing it more regularly to save the planet.
Image Credits: mdx.ac.uk
In the last 4 blog posts, we explored how the pandemic impacted four important pillars for purposeful living; spiritual, mental, emotional and relational. Let’s explore the fifth pillar, the ‘physical’ related to the health of people in this blog.The health pillar consist of three aspects exercise, nutrition and rest. As in the past four blog posts let me describe my experience during the pandemic.
After I got standard in dhaka, ehe time I spent converting delivery methods of our intellectual services online, engaging with the authorities about arranging passage home, conducting webinars, taking part in webinars organised by others, catching up on the covid updates, writing recommendations, and being in touch with my family took more time and energy than usual.
Let’s explore the ‘rest’ aspect first. While I used to sleep one our two hours before midnight before the pandemic, the new workload resulted in me sleeping after mid night and waking late most days. While I was conscious of how detrimental this was to my health, I was not able improve this. However after returning to Sri Lanka, this changed as my work load on getting back home was eliminated. I slept by 10 pm and was awake at 6 am the entire fortnight while undergoing quarantine at the Blue Waters Beach Resort. This trend continued after returning home for a while, but with the emerging demands the sleep timings became inconsistent. In addition to sleep timings it is important to take at least one free day a week and this was a big improvement area too, until I managed ot find the time to take the family down to a beach resort last weekend and take a proper free day.
The next aspect is exercises. I used to do yoga and meditation in the morning and exercises for at least 30 minutes a day before the pandemic. The length and quality of meditation and yoga varied based on the time I had in the morning before I headed off to work. After the pandemic began, my meditation and yoga sessions were longer and exercise were more intense. I ensured these practices every day even if I woke late when I was in Dhaka. It was easier and of better quality during quarantine and for a few weeks after returning home. However with my sleep patterns becoming inconsistent the quality of my morning meditation and yoga has also got adversely affected.
Nutrition is the aspect where I have been least consistent with, during the time in Dhaka and after returning home. Thankfully the quality and quantity of nutrition during quarantine was very good as we were provided well balanced meals planned by the medical experts.
The sense I make from this exploration is that the challenges of the pandemic has had an adverse effect on my health related practices although I am aware of what is required, have practiced such disciplines regularly in the past and have the intention get back to an ideal routine.
People I speak to lament about challenges in the various aspects. Many could not sleep on time or sleep well due to the information overload and the anxiety as as the lockdowns began in March. Many could not exercise as they were not allowed to leave home. However this should not be an excuses as I exercised indoors most of the days. Its only in the last 2 months that I started taking walks by the lake near my home in Sri Lanka. Some manage nutritious well, specially due to the compulsion of doing home gardening in the first two months with the fear of food shortages etc. This too is fading out and many find that managing the quality of food intake is also becoming challenging.
The quality of health related practices explored in this blog has a direct impact on our immunity, which has a direct impact on our ability to fight the virus. As such it is important for us to be very mindful about this aspect and I intend focusing on it more intensely and intently from now onwards.
I wish you purposeful living.