Friday, July 22, 2011

Best Investment!

To become wealthy, you must save and invest. Government of India gives you tax rebate if you save and invest money. Today, there are numerous opportunities to invest your money. I was pondering over few which I am seriously considering; few of them are really good. We are over-serious for investing money in property & share markets. What about the most valuable assets like body/health, intellect, mind and soul? I believe you are truly wealthy if you are physically fit, successful in channeling your talent properly, have ignited minds and awakened soul.

I spent some time in self-reflection and explored my beliefs on making investments. The best investment we can make is the one we make in self development. Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Pablo Picasso, Leonardo Da Vinci, Gautam Buddha, Socrates, Mohammed & Swami Vivekananda were the wisest investors in my opinion. They made investments in themselves. Don’t get me wrong, Warren Buffet is still the best financial investment tycoon today. But the point I want to make is: the time, energy & money you invest on your own self-development pays the best dividends. 

Self development is simply undertaking techniques to help you unlock your potential – to be the best that you can be.  You learn to stop letting negative thoughts and emotions hold you back in your life and you become free to live a life where you can go beyond the boundaries. Personal development is all about defining & executing personal development plans for improving self-awareness, building /renewing identity, developing your talents & soul, identifying & improving your potential, enhancing lifestyle or quality of life, improving health and fulfilling aspirations. It is initiating a life enterprise.

You make changes in order to become happier and more fulfilled. One of my friends developed a habit of reading 20 pages before breakfast everyday and he ends up reading 3 books every month. Shyamendra, a software engineer in a networking company started meditating few minutes in the morning & evening and increased his level of concentration to great extent.  Over a cup of coffee, Sr Vice President of Hindalco shared his health secret – ‘30 minutes of brisk walking every day and a little extra care in what I eat helped me to stay away from doctors for last 30 years’.  Small, tiny changes made over a period of time become gigantic forces which work for you. 

Here is the list of 5 things you can do to make big deposits in your account of personal development:
  1. Pay yourself first; every month, set aside 10% of your income for investment in your own development. Buy books, attend trainings, go for a movie, buy great gifts to yourself.
  2. Spend quality time with yourself; Take out two holy hours every day for self-reflection, meditation, reading, writing & planning your day, month, year and life.
  3. Give back to society; We make living by what we get but we make life by what we give. Dr Suresh Singh (Medical Surgeon) just got admitted his servant to a school and spends 5 hours a week teaching her.  My wife & me, recently adopted six kids to sponsor their school education. I feel more confident and capable after that. I bet, you are richer than you think. Start giving back to society in whatever ways you can.
  4.  Do more good; Pledge to do more good to yourself and to the world. Put your knowledge & ideas to execution and make difference.
  5. Love your work; Your work is going to fill a big part of your life. You can’t really develop without developing skills which get you success there. Plan your own growth. Develop your skills which you think will take you places. 
Share your own ways of personal development on this blog by writing a comment.

Friday, July 8, 2011

14 Ways to multiply your productivity in just 14 days

 1.       Turn off the TV: This idiot box is #1 killer of time and it drains all the energy left after a tiring day or week. This actually makes people lazy and less productive. Avoid.   

2.        Read David Allen’s best-selling book ‘Getting Things Done’: This is one of the most important productivity books you will ever read.

3.       Become an early bird: You get 45 additional working days (45 x 8 = 360 Hrs) in a year by getting up one hour earlier every morning. Get up early before anyone else. Nothing beats a quiet house.

4.       Drink plenty of water: Drink a liter of water early every morning. We wake up dehydrated. Your most precious asset isn’t really time; it’s energy. Water restores it. While working during the day keep on sipping water frequently. It supplies more oxygen to your mind and makes it efficient.

5.       Find your own Pareto buckets: The Pareto principle is the 80-20 rule, which states that 80% of the result in life comes from 20% of the effort.  Find out these 20% activities for yourself and focus your energy on the same. 

6.       Observe technology fast: Turn all your electronic notifications off. Shut down your laptop. Put your phone on silent mode. Take your holy hour or two for meditating, reading & thinking. Observe silence for an hour every day.

7.       Love what you do: This will improve your concentration on work at hand which is actually the secret behind every great act in the history.

8.      Drink a cup of green tea: It strengthens your immunity, fights the cause of allergies, slows aging process, prevents wrinkles & acne and stabilized your cholesterol levels. It really reduces stress and bolsters productivity.

9.      Auto pay your bills: Enable auto payment on a fixed date for all your EMI and automate the utility payments from your account. Save energy and time for doing things which take you closer to your dreams.

10.   Shop online: whenever possible, avoid going to the store. is one of my favorite sites. Or you can just buzz the neighborhood store and ask for home delivery.

11.    Take care: Your body is not a machine. Take proper diet & rest. Stop all the work and rejuvenate it for one day in a week. Pamper your senses by taking great care of them.

12.   Find a mentor: Right guidance is the rarest thing in this world. I owe a lot to my best friend, sister and mentor Dr Suman. She is a wonderful lady and is always there to guide and support in professional and personal life. Who is your mentor?

13.    Outsource as much as possible: No job is menial. But think how much extra time and energy you will save by outsourcing cooking, laundry, car wash, house cleaning and other such chore activities. In this time, do something else which adds more value to you.  

14.   Be happy: Happiness at work is the #1 productivity booster.  With a happy mood, you make better team, stronger relationships, higher sales and delighted customers. Research has proved that happy people are more creative, have more energy, learn faster and make better decisions.  

Remember, productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort. So, persevere.