Sunday, September 16, 2007

Employees are Responsible for Themselves

First we need to move away from the concept of organization taking responsibility for the emplpoyee. Taking responsibility for the employee is a stupid, nonsensensical concept. We are not able to carry out this reponsibility (not that it is possible) and make a pretense of trying hard to fulfill this responsibility, then fail and then feel inadequate and also make the employee feel let down.

Fundamental theme has to be that employee is responsible for his life, what he is and what he wants to be. Organizations are only a context. Like family is a context. What is the context? Like families fulfill a certain need of the human being which is emotional need, feeling of completeness, organizations too fulfill a certain context for the employee. The context provides the employee to learn, to grow, to fulfill need to make money, to express his potential.

Seen in this context, the employee - organization relationship moves beyond the relationship that can come from a contract. A contract is where something is given and something taken. Here the relationship is between the human being and the context, where the goal is the expression of the individual. It is the same as that of a nation-citizen. A human being-family. They are not complete, they are not perfect; simlilary organizations should also be able to take such a position, and only such a position. Anything else will make them feel inadequate and imbalanced.

Strengths will enable a person know what he can do well. So what should one do when one finds that he is in a role which requires some other kind of strength. He then has two options. Either he gets out of the situation and finds a place where he can exercise his strengths or learns to manage the situation. The best way to manage the situation is to acknowledge the strengths and the lacuna as well. Let us assume that I am not good at people management but am a brilliant tecnical guy. But my role demands that I involve myself with people. Then maybe I should bring in a person who will help me fill this gap. This is not something new. Even CEOs take help. What are boards for. They bring together different kinds of strenghts and fill something which he may need, but is by himself not capable of producing. Things fail when we make a pretense that this can be met. Typical problems confronts the managers. They are into the position and then they are left high and dry expected to fill all that is required for the role.

Why Positive Thinking is key to Success at Work

Think Positive, Do Positive.

Yes, if you can think that a challenge at work or home can be done, you are most likely to achieve the same. At the same time, if one has doubts it can be achieved, then success is unlikely. Because when the mind sets about the task in a positive framework, then it’s easy to cross any hurdle that we may face.

All successful folks began with positive thoughts and dreams. Bill Gates, Pete Sampras, Muhammad Ali, Steve Jobs, etc. each one of them had a goal, believed they could get there, put in efforts and never lost hope at any point in time.

Think of the small things you achieved at school, home or workplace. Did you not start with the thought that you could do it? Did you not have the faith in yourself to succeed in the task? Yes, you can recall that you didn’t have any pressure on you at that point in time. You knew that if you’re focused, you could certainly complete the job at hand.

Starting with a clear mind, goals and thoughts is like beginning a formula one race with a fabulous vehicle filled with gas. Hence you start so positively, the confidence builds up to get you nearer the dream.

“Champions aren’t made in the gym. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them – a desire, a dream, a vision. They have to have the skill and the will. But the will must be stronger than the skill,” said the boxing legend Muhammad Ali.

Positive thinking is like a tonic, like fuel that can drive you to success. Make it a habit to start with an advantage and you will get ahead in life. Success is all yours.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The Burst of Collective Individualism

We live in an era where we are seeing collectivism as well individualism propogate and become stronger and stronger. Collective individualism is a Zen like paradox. Nonetheless, very true when we look at any sphere of life or world, from a micro or a macro perspective.

By collectivism I mean bring into the open, for more people to share, participate in, contribute to a common cause; or sometimes not so common a cause. Individualism, on the other hand, means a greater expression of an individual's character, profile, potential.

If we take the web and some of the most commonly used applications or utilities in the web which include Wikipedia and Google, I find that without the collective thought process or contribution they will not hold any meaning or possibility. The simple truth here is the willingness to share ones abilities and knowledge to a common purpose - enhancement of knowledge. At the same time what does the web or even these utilities encourage. Expression of the individual self. By having access to vast expanse of knowledge in terms of breadth and depth one is able to go deeper into his/her pursuit of chosen sphere of knowledge, and therefore express his or her self in a more concrete manner. One is able delve deeper into his her interest, multiply the expression further.

Without the individual contribution, collectivism would not be possible. Without the collective knowledge or spirit, individualism may not flourish. They are linked to each other. They propogate each other. They strengthen each other.

What has made collective individualism possible and strong. Technology.

It is not about information technology alone. It is technology in every area. Some of which come to my mind include - supply chain management, entertainment elctronics, bio-technology etc. Take the example of the impact of supply chain management. What is the objecitve of the advancement in SCM - making it possible for the individual preferences to be brought closer to the individual. This will be possible only if we are able to aggregate bits of individual needs into economically viable units, and then be able to disperse them economically closest to the individual.

Technology has enabled and made this possible. Individual is able to exercise a greater choice when he or she goes to nearest super market. Choices in entertainment electronics has made it possible to economically create diversity of entertainment; and also bringing it closest to the individual and that too through various media. Earlier there was one channel in black white shown in the evening for a fixed number of hours. Contrast this to access to entertainment today.

Undelying this collective indivudalism is the ever prevailing nature of human being. Which is to expand his self - externally and also internally.

Primordial needs are getting expressed in many by taking diverse forms and names. Strengthening of the individual expression. Strengthening of the colelctive expression too.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Are you Loyal to Your EMI

Handcuffed by EMIs

There was a time when company's bound employees through golden handcuffs to retain them in the company. The forms included deferred bonus, esops, loans etc. These do exist in many companies even today, but employees are not very receptive to these ideas and would prefer not to enter into these handcuffs voluntarily.

There is one other kind of handcuff which most corporate professionals have locked themselves into. Voluntarily. They cannot get away with it for years. That is the handcuff of the EMI. Today most professionals have taken loans of huge amounts mostly for purchase of house. The EMIs form anywhere between 60% to 80% of the monthly salary. Earlier nett take home, to decide to move from one company to another, was calculated as monthly fixed cash minus tax payable. Now the nett take home is calculated as monthly fixed cash minus tax minus EMI.

The EMI handcuff has lot of significance. EMI assumes a steady outflow month on month. This means a steady income is needed to service the EMI. If one does not like ones job and wants to move to a job where the pay may not be great but the experience of work is great, one cannot take it. One cannot take a break from work or corporate life to pursue other interests for a while, maybe study, travel etc. One cannot afford to consider entrepreneurship as an option because entrepreneurship means a risk and thus a possibility of unsteady cash flow. One may decide that he could live with lesser money but the banks will not allow you to exercise this option. People crib about their job, the meaninglessness in it, the stress it creates, the imbalance in work-life because of it. Nevertheless they have to be there in the office at 9 the next morning otherwise the EMI cheque will bounce at the beginning of the next month.

We hear of loyalty of people to companies coming down. However, there is another form of loyalty which has got strengthened. People are more loyal to the banks which have given them the loans than to the companies. People can change companies. Can they change banks so easily? One friend of mine has shifted four companies in the last five years. He has been servicing the same bank in the that period. They get more communication from the banks than they get from the company in which they work.

Btw, we also seem to get addicted to the EMIs. When one comes to an end we need to add a new one. When salaries increase and the ratio of the salary to EMI comes down, we will take one more loan and ensure the ratio comes back to its normalcy. Maybe we will buy one more house or one more facier car.

Earlier, spouses particularly the wives were frustrated having to go to work, manage the kids, prepare food, take care of in laws. Now EMIs have been added to the list. A neighbour of mine working in one of the big IT companies had the same complaint. She is tired of doing all that is expected of her in the role of a wife. Now she has to also contribute to the EMI though she would otherwise like to stop working in the corporate. Contribution to EMI is included in the criteria for shortlisting the partner for life.

Life decisions seem to revolve around EMIs.

Height of Infinite

Height of knowledge is ignorance
Height of everything is nothing
Height of nothing is everything
Height of insanity is commedy
Height of oneness is infinite
Height of infinite is oneness

Friday, September 7, 2007

First Evaluate the People in Business Plan

First evaluate the people in the business plan

Business plans carry lots of information starting with the idea, followed by whole lot of things on money, technology, methodology, timelines et al. People are not given the prominence and are treated as one more aspect to be covered. However, in my view the foremost need in a business and thus the business plan is the people who are going to own the business from planning to execution. Mind you not parts of it like sales.

In order to assess a business plan one should evaluate the people who are going to manage the business. Show me the people who are going to running a business plan first and then the business plan. The people who are going to run or execute a business plan are more important and the the deciding factor compared to the others i.e. those numbers, excel sheets and ppts.

If we can assess the people on their business acumen, commitment to the business or the alignment to the project, approach to the augmentation and deployment of knowledge and skills, ability to take a long term view, result orientation, attitudinal alignment of the people with that required for the business everything else will fall in place and things will happen.

Business plans are only that - plans. They are drawn on assumptions of the future context. The future contexts will change. Only thing which keep the idea going will be the people who run or own the project. The right people will appreciate changes and keeping in view the long term goals, make changes to the plans and make the desired results happen.

I used to see in the companies I worked that guys will go and sell to the customers projects with their ppts and other information. Then when the order comes there is chaos. No talent will be available. Extreme pressures will come up. Some projects die. Customers feel let down. All because we did not put people in the front. I myself have learnt this from running an enterprise. I have come up with couple of ideas in the past. The ideas which, of course I felt were excellent, but were also acknowledged by others as being excellent. But then when it came to a point of take off I had to shelve the project because I did not have the people to make it happen.

Business plans should start with the people who are going to run the business. It should begin with saying A, B and C are going to run this business. Give details of A, B and C. They should be allow to express themselves on the business plan.

If we have the right people even if the plan is wrong the business will make it.
If we have the wrong people even if the plan is right the business will not make it.

Lets put people first in the business plans.

Manpower for India is Like Oil for the Gulf

I keep saying is that India is at a point as the Gulf was at the time of discovery of oil. Manpower will do to India what oil did to the Gulf.

Gulf prospered with the discovery of oil in the regions. Suddenly coutries there became rich. Propserity zoomed.

Lets consider some facts:
1. Indian population makes up for one sixth of the gloabl population. Our population is one billion in the world's population of six billion.
2. I quote here exhaustively from the article "The battle for brainpower" in the Economist, Oct 5th, 2006. Ageing population will have dramtic effect in Europe and Japan. By 2025 the number of people aged 15 - 64 is projected to fall by 7% in Germany, 9% in Italy and 14% in Japan. Im America retitrement of the baby-boomers which has just started will mean companies will lose large numbers of experienced workers over a short period of time. Biggest companies will lose half their senior managers in the next 5 years or so.

Economics will require manpower in the countries which will face large scale shortfall of manpower. This will mean that Indian manpower will be sought after. This may not be just in the area of IT, but even at the lower level jobs. Legislation will be the biggest restricting factor. But economics will govern. Politics will follow economics. Legislation will follow politics. Economics will mean that people will find ways of getting the necessary labour where they need to keep the economic engine going. Maybe illegally too.

But population itself is only a raw material like crude oil. Unless crude is refined it is of no use. So also with the manpower. Unless it is educated, skilled and employable the numbers itself mean nothing.

But the good thing is that the awareness of Indian talent has been increasing over the years and will increase over the coming years. Fifteen to twenty years later those who are good at refining the raw material into meaningful skilled talent, like the large Indian IT companies, will tend to benefit. MNCs or anyone ouside will have to give up the view of being able to get trained resources off the shelf. If they want talent in large numbers they will have to be able to invest in the refining process.

Govt will not be in a position to create adequate infrastructure to provide the right kind of education. Private investment has been happening in the post schooling education, but the primary education is still a big domain of the government and this is not going to move fast enough to keep pace with the need. Economics will find its own path for fulfilling its course.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Outsourcing has Actually been Practiced for Ages

Outsourcing has been a commonly used word over the last few years. India is capital of ousourcing. The world has suddenly become flat and all roads in this flat world lead to Bengaluru.

Is outsourcing something new?

To look at this we need to define outsourcing first. Outsourcing is a way of gettings done which will help in doing things which you want to do. I want to create customer delight for which I need to do many things - create quality products, ensure my employees deliver, ensure customer service and all that. So in order to do that I do some things internally and then get somethings from outside. Things which I am not either good at or do not have the scale to do it effectively and efficiently. In effect there is a contirbution by people within and outside of my organisation boundaries. So if outsourcing is bringing in contribution of people outside my organisation into the fold of delivering the goods and services, then along the history such contributions have been happening.

Lets try and trace the route of the final food prepared by my mother - rice. To cook the rice she needed the raw rice, water, LPG, gas stove. The rice came from the retail vendor near our house. He got the rice from the wholesale seller of rice in Chennai who in turn bought it from a "mandi" in Andhra Pradesh, who bought from different farmers in the nearby areas. In order to grow the crop the farmer needed good fertlizer. Where did it come from? Maybe a plant in Gujarat? What all went into the fertiliser - potassium, calcium, soda etc. Apart from that they needed gas or other form of fuel. Where did these come from. Some came from Bihar. Some from came from West Africa. The gas came from the gas fields in the Middle East. Who operated these gas fields? Some of the engineers from Britain? How did they get the knowledge for doing the drilling? They were educated in a college in London? Where did the paper for the books they studied from come? They came from trees in the Indonesia?.........................

The rice which I eat has had a contribution of so many nationals and geographies. So what's new with the current buzz of outsourcing?

Everyone and everything has been contributing to the existence of every other being and thing right through. They all contribute to each other. They are all connected. Only we are seeing it in a more explicit manner, maybe closer to our eyes now.

Compensation levels in IT industry will come down

What is so sanctimonious of the high salary levels in India of people working in IT companies? When we say higher it is in comparison with that in other industries - new old economy and new new economy. Should companies in IT industry have to always compensate higher than that by other industries.

In response to appreciation of the rupee against the dollar, I have read/heard that companies are looking at alternate models for the business, need to accept lower profitability levels, increasing of billing rates, increasing the work hours of employees etc. Why is that we do not hear of talks about decreasing of the salaries?

Salaries in IT industry is by far the highest compared to that in any other industry in India. Why is the salary level in IT companies high in the first place. Companies which were running the IT companies started paying much higher than counterparts in other industries. That is to say someone in IT industry was paid much higher in IT company than his colleague who also had made his mark in the company or industry. This was primarily because the earnings in IT industry were in dollars. Lots of dollars poured in. The employees were paid high because it made sense to share this large gain from the dollar revenue by the companies with the employees. The salary was factored on the revenue, there was no other reason other than this.

To take an example and then are real examples for this. If a company had two divisions, lets say one in IT export and the other in manufacturing, then the employees in the first division were paid significantly higher than the employees in the second division, simply because the first division earned revenue in dollars and the second in rupees.

The traditional demand-supply rule for determining the salaries did not apply then. i.e. post 1995 when IT in India started booming and every company was trying to retain and attract talent mostly from other companies. Times were also good on the billing front. So profitability remained high and growth was taken for granted. Post 2002, the scenario on compensation re-emerged but with with one very critical additional factor - entry of MNCs, captive units, start-ups, all of which made it a cut throat competition. Nevertheless, growth was sustainably high. Revenues crossed the billion dollar mark.

But my own judgment is that compensation for one sector cannot remain significantly higher than that for other industries if the basic qualities in the manpower are not different. To me a civil engineer with 6 years of experience and working in a hydro project in Assam is as critical as a mechanical engineer working in tool & die shop in Jalandhar or a chemical engineer working on an oil platform off the Mumbai basin. To me their contributions are as important as that of a software engineer in Banagluru. It is accepted that differences based on the industry will be there. There will also be other factors like whether it is a sunrise industry, demand and supply, growth of the industry as such etc. But it is difficult to fathom the very significant difference in the salary levels between IT industry and others.

Somewhere along there has to be a balance. It cannot be that one sector alone gets paid considerably higher than other sector. The same demand and supply will even this out at some time. If sector A generates lot of foreign exchange and pays its employees high, at some time the foreign exchange reserve will increase and will thus will see the local currency level appreciate, which then lower the local revenue value of the foreign revenue which will then mean a lower capacity to pay the employees which means that the local salary levels have to come down.

I do not see how this trend can be countered. It has to happen. Its happening will also be for the good. Because it will narrow the differential between that for one segment vis a vis the other segment which is healthy from a social and economic point of view. People will not run behind education in one particular stream and thereby reducing the availability of manpower for other sectors. One segment of the population will alone not be the reason for pushing up costs right from the auto fares to real estates. Slow and steady increase in income levels will bring in a better appreciation of the value of money.

Maybe the employee will be able to realise things which his seniors in the industry enjoyed at the early stages of his employment and will have to wait for a longer period of time now. Which is good because it will bring parity with his counterparts in other industries.

Why then companies are hesitating to relook at the salaries of their employees? Why cannot we go ahead and say that we are going to decease your salary now. Earlier the exchange rate helped us pay your high salaries. Now that they are unfavourable we have to pay you lower. Maybe it is because of the fear of losing out employees. Maybe such a thought itself is blasphemous. Actually money alone does not matter either for attrition or retention.

Salary decreases are inevitable. If economics kept the salary levels high, then it is the economics which bring them down. companies will have to succumb to this at some point. Someone has to bell the cat. Some leader will emerge who will lead the way and as usual there will be others who will follow.

Web Unifies Us, but helps Express Individualism

The world constantly divides and unifies at the same time. A paradox indeed. But sensible and real.

The web is a great example for this. What does the web do? It brings everything in the public domain under one signle umbrella. Everything gets connected. No barriers of time or space. Maybe everyone is a netizen - a citizen of the networked world. The actual citizenship linked to the nations does not matter. The web breaks down the barriers of nations, age, religion, caste, creed, time zones, language and brings them all to the same platform. None of these matter for one to become a netizen. We are all of the same ciitizenship. How marvellous!!!

The same web also is helping in individualization. Individualization by way of creating opporutnities to individuals to pursue ones own interest and uniqueness, and strengthen the uniqueness. Earlier maybe I did not know how to express my idea, where to go to express them, how to get feedback on them, how to improve my thought process. Today I can use the web to do all these. In the process, I strengthen my individualization. Businesses get created because I know avenues to express ideas and find the means to execute them.

The paradox of division and one is not new. It is all along been studied, accepted and expressed in the Hindu philosophy. The atman or Brahman is one. It is infinite and eternal. The world is divided epxpression of the one.

The web is only an example for us to appreciate the truth of divided yet one. Oneness in the many. Many in the oneness.

Specialization or Generalization? The Classic Dilemma

In the middle of every professional's career comes this dilemma of genralization versus specialization. Should I specialise in a particular field, technology, domain, function or sub-function, line of activity or should I get into a general function, most offen a subset of general management.

This in fact came up in my discussion with a friend of mine who is working in one of the top five Indian IT companies. He is a HR professional. He was facing exactly the same dilemma. Last two years he spent in a particular sub function within HR rather than do a generalist HR role. He was wondering whether he should move into another sub function of HR, get a few years experience specializing in that sub function and eventually move into a generalist role. Or should he move to generalist HR role rightaway.

In my own assessment of business history world over, career profiles of achievers, countries which developed or did not develop, I feel that there are no two ways about this dilemma. One needs to specialise. Period.

Now, one clarification is warranted here. Even generalization needs specialization. For one to shine in a generalist (management) function, one needs to specialize in that space. We will discus this further later.

If we look at achievers the world over and over time, we see that each of the achievers specialized in some field or the other. Muscians, painters, writers, scientists, biologists, technlogists, teachers, gurus, business leaders chose some area and went deep into it to gain mastery over it. We do not have musicians who will dabble with different instruments. Scientists do not move from one field of research to another and then yet another. Companies to have specialised in some area/product/service to grow and become soemthing there.

This is a natural process. How can anyone gain mastery over something if we do not go deeper and deeper into it. Mastery requires continuous learning, experimentation, innovation, research, application of knowledge, sharpening of skills. All these will come only with focused effort over long time. Dilution of the focus will only lead to diffusion of energy and thus blurring of the image of the output.

Maybe we can question whether this applicable to a field like management where the main theme is engagement of resources in an effective manner, to achieve a desired output. Here again unless we specialize in this field of effective engagement of resources, by applying knowledge, skills in different contexts of time and space, learning from them to refine the ability to deploy the resources, one cannot gain mastery over the field.

To me USA is a great nation which could be an example of this. It is a nation which has encouraged and continues to ecourage specalists in every field; from science to humanities. No wonder maximum number of nobel laureates are from the USA. So also technology, engineering and scientific innovations. They have also specilized in business. Many of the world class businesses are managed, funded, invested in by the financial aggregrators who have specialised in spotting, and nurturing, taking risks, making financial judgements, financial solutions. One is to do with the depth and the other is to do width. Either way only if one expands these with clear focus will one be able to gain mastery over the field.

So what should one choose - specialization or generalization? On what basis should the choice be made? It should be made on an inner calling. Only an inner calling willl give the necessary passion to focus the energies and gain mastery. The reason cannot be external. The external focus will lead to mediocrity by way of being hung between the specialization and generlaisation. Listen to the inner voice which tells one what he or she is good at doing or would like to do. Once we listen to it we need to pursue the same.

Maybe for econmonic, social or historic reasons we did not have the luxury of following the inner calling. But at least those who are above the two levels of Maslow's heirarchy need to look inward and start pursing the specialization. That is what human freedom is all about. Pursuing one's freedom.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Nano to Create Social Chaos in India

The 1 lac rupees car will be a revolution indeed. maybe there is no such precedence in industrial era. The car will make it affordable for middle class and maybe those at the lower end of this class. It would be a great way of improving the image of India as an innovator from that of a follower. Tatas are showing way to the Indians of what is possible if we set our sight on what we want and pursue the same relentlessly.

My concern, however, is that this car is going to cause social chaos in India.

The issue is whether the already highly stretched infrastrucuture will be able to take an steep increase in the number of cars. As it is the infrastructure is cracking and is creating enormous discomfort to the citizens.

Here are some numbers I am quoting from a site:

The total number of motor vehicles in Chennai Metropolitan Area has increased from 144,282 in 1984 to 1,674,185 in 2005.

The vehicle population has grown at the rate of 50% per annum during this period.

The number of two-wheelers has grown enormously from 87,000 in 1984 to 1,266, 114 in 2005, at the rate of about 65% per annum.

If I assume that the number of two wheelers are increasing at the rate of 20% annually.

And that 10% of those who intend to purchase two wheeler go for the car instead. This is an assumption from an article published on this car in a leading business weekly).

This would mean an addition of around 20000 cars. Of course in the initial few years of the introduction of the car this kind of addition will not be possible because of the production capacity.

Will our road be able to take on this kind of additional car traffic? This is not going to be possible. What then would be the consequence?

- Flats which were purchased by the middle and lower middle class do not facility to park cars. They did not assume that they will be purchasing cars so early in their life or career. Now they will not have space to park the car they purchase. Some will try to squeeze in the car into the apartment complex. But most will have to park their cars on the public roads. This will narrow the width of the roads further and reduce the space available for moving vehicles on the roads leading to further congestion.

- Traffic will choke at most roads. even without the 1 lac rupee car traffic during the peak hours are very high.

- Higher level of pollution and thus health problems caused by them

- People will race against time. They will get delayed. They will spend a greater amount of time in jams and signals. Tempers will fly. Stress will increase. This will show on their health, their relationships with office colleagues and family members.

Some positive actions may emerge:

- shifting of population to the outskirts, de-congesting the metropolis areas

- greater pressure on the Govt to improve the infrastructure, to come up with newer projects including in areas like public transport, to complete projects with greater urgency

- of course, improvement in employment by way of ancillary industries and services

On the whole I fear there will severe social impplications coming from the coming of the 1 lac rupee car.

Tips to Enhance Relationships at Workplace

Relationships are key to a healthy atmosphere at work. But, unfortunately not many know how to work up healthy relationships with colleagues and bosses.

Communicate with Colleagues
Whether you like it or not, you have to communicate to co-workers. It doesn’t mean you have to be nice at all times to people you don’t like. It only means one must recognize co-workers with a hello or smile. Or else you may face criticism or gossip during the breaks. Starting with a positive attitude to be good to people around will make your life at work peaceful. This will make life at office happy and you’ll feel great coming over every morning.

Don’t say Negative Things
Refrain from talking ill of colleagues. This will save you a lot of trouble. I mean even if you don’t like the turn of someone’s nose, keep it to yourself. Or share it with someone you trust. Never say something negative in a group. It reflects badly on your personality. It’s tough to be like this but thing of the tremendous benefits. There’s always positive energy around you at work. Bosses can easily get a feel of whether co-workers are looking forward to your leadership. This will become critical when you are in line for a bigger responsibility.

Bosses want you to be Professional
Be professional with regard to bosses. Showing overt eagerness to be in bosses’ good books is seen by many as unprofessional and also assesses as a sign of incompetence. So it’s best to carry out the challenges assigned and maintain cordial relationship with bosses. Remember to show initiative and take reasonable risks at work. Keep bosses posted about critical developments, even when the work has not been completed.

Resolve Misunderstandings Quickly
Have you run into trouble with someone? Connect and resolve the misunderstanding as soon as possible. Speak to the person concerned and be frank. Everyone makes mistakes, but the world loves folks who admit the same. Make up rightaway.

Show genuine interest in people regardless of tags. Managers always love folks who are people-oriented. We are full of emotions and keeping relationships well oiled means we are on the road to peace and success.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Understanding Rituals and Spirituality

Tomorrow is Ammniyavatam, when the many Brahmins will put on a new sacred thread and throw away the old one. To me this day will bring to fore one more day of clash of thoughts and beliefs and thus actions within the family. Those who believe in the ritual will try to force those who do not believe in the ritual and practice. Emotions will fly. People will be upset with one another.

During my reading of discourses of the Bhagavad Gita, I cam across a concept which was propounded therein. The concept is of sruti and smriti. Sruti, I understand is a temporal law. Wheras, Smriti is an eternal truth. What it means, in my undertanding but definite belief, is that the truth does not change and is applicable to all and all at times. Wheras relgious practices and rituals change in accordance with change in time and place. They are not permanent or applicable to all, always and everywhere. They are contextual.

Whether my understanding is right or wrong, I believe in the above. The relevance of It. The governance by It. The connection of everyone to It. The behaviour of It and our own relationship with It are all true and ever prevailing.

Let me deivate a bit and try to empahsise on the need for every individual to experiment with It. If a rule, law, theorem is true. No matter who or how we experiment with it, it will prove to be true. if Newton's lawas of physics are true. It will proven true in any context. There is nothing to fear in allowing anyone to experiment with the laws. Because whatever the epxeriment it will prove to be true. Thus it will build a conviction even the intial doubters of the law or truth. Why should be this be different in spirituality. If It is true, then people should be allowed to experiement it. It should be argued against, qaurelled about, negated, tested in different contexts, questioned with regard to the day to day life. If It is true then no matter what it will prevail. The truth will conquer. It will remove all doubts in the doubters. Human being will evolve a developed and stroner person by having been convinced by experimentation.

Unfortunately, we force rituals on the individuals, who then find flaws in the rituals and the practices posing questions from ones experience and perspectives of self and the world. When there is nothing scientific to be posited agains these arguments, we resort to age old practice of putting fear into the human being to control him/her. We tend to the argument that we will be punished because we do not follow the ritual. This will only weaken the human being, make him revolt, make him doubt things more than ever.

Lets allow for experimentation of the individual with It without any fear. Satyamevajayate. If It is true, he or she will see the truth and accept it.

Rituals and practices are transitory, temporal. Instead of emphasis on following of the rituals and practices we will better of if we guide and be guided towards the pursuit of the truth and It. Why should someone be forced to play football when he or she like to play cricket. why should one be forced to learn music when one likes to draw. We cannot force rituals and practices which are agains the nature of the person in particular and human being in general. We need to allow the natural behaviour of the individual to prevail. We teach sscience to all from childhood as it is eternal and universal. Spirituality is eternal and universal and thus it can be something which is taught and will be accepted. Rituals and practices are neither eternal nor universal. Thus for it be accepted will be difficult for a person unless it comes from within. Need for physical fitness is an universal and eternal. The form of it i.e. whether football or cricket is contextual, contextual to the person's nature and environmental circumstances. You cannot force one to play football when his nature pushes him to cricket. We need to realise the distintion between religion and spirituality. Spirituality is universal and eternal. Religion is contextual to space and time.

Why the World needs a Positive Newspaper

We need to have a new kind of newspaper. A newspaper which evokes and propogates positive energy in individuals and society. Imagine a newspaper where we read the following:

- the project of creating a new highway between City A and City B was completed today. This project was completed 3 months ahead of schedule and within the budget. Interview the various people who were involved with the project. (Contrast this with the aplenty news of new projects being announced with great fanfare and which are often forgotten afterwards. Either they do not get completed or overrun their time and cost schedules)

- the co-operative society in village A which was formed around twenty years back with the aim of bringing together the farmers of the village to educate them on the new practices, and improve productivity celebrated its 20th anniversary. The highlight of the function was a presentation by one of the children of the village member who went to the US to do higher studies and now has patents in biological sciences. In the presentation the scientist brought to the forum the new developments in biological sciences which can be practised by farmers across the world to improve the productivity.

- Village C was given an award by the United Nations for its effort to conserve water through water harvesting. This was a totally domestic efforts with participation of members from the village with no monetary support of the government or agencies from outside.

- story of a mother and daughter who are working as conductor and driver for the state transport corporation. Both are educated upto graduation. Mother got the job on copassionate grounds after the death of her husband who was an employee of the corporation. The duagther chose to pick up the job of a driver in the corporation. She was selected to the job going through the normal process of selection.

The idea is simple - present stories which are positive and thus build positive energy. These are not fictious stories. There are many many true stories of this nature. It is just that the media does not focus on these. they do not investigate them - it takes much more time and effort. Bombing, corruption, stalling of parliaments, verbal deul between politicians, stock market crash etc. gain precendence.

We need to bring out the positives in the society in order to create positive energy and thereby overcome the negative energies. Just highlighting negative events will not help us overcome the negative energies.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Building Relationship with the Divine

There is a big problem with God. When we mention God immediately the association is to God prescribed by our religion. I have a problem with people being asked and told what their religion is.

People become something only when they demonstrate, inculcate or believe in something. For example a Doctor is a doctor because he is qualified, trained and is practising medicine. One spends time or effort in watching or playing football because he realises an interest within him for football. He has chosen, mostly unconciosuly, football to other games. One may believe he is rightist politically because he thinks he understands the ideology of the right and believes in them. One is an Indian because he starts associating himself with the cultures and norms of an Indian. In fact people tend to start understanding why they are told they are Indian. Initially it is only a geographical or demographic meaning.

None of these are true in the case of when one calls himself a Christian, Hindu or a Muslim. One is stamped in one of these categories. This also to an extent is fine like in the case of a citizenship. However, the problem is that they are forced into the rituals of these categories, they are told to discriminate themselves and others in terms of the categorisation.

This is unfair. No one should be christened into a particular category. It should be ones own choice. A choice which one makes at whatever time one chooses in ones life.

Now coming to "It". I read somewhere that we need to do away with the term God. Whenever we say God it is immediately connoted to my God, your God. Whereas God is one. Also by giving it some form of human form to the God we start relating to qualities of a human being into the God.

What matters is not a God but It. It is the Divine. The Divine which is common to all. Irrespective of the religion. It is common to all forms of energy - organic, inorganic. It is applicable to all form of energy expression - space, love, hatred etc. Somewhere along by God we are unable to relate Him to everything and anything. Thus starts the discrimination for the application of the God. If there is one It which is universal to anyone and everyone, anything and everything, it can be so much better. After all It is Divine, universal and eternal.

What is the meaning of befriending It? We need to build a love for It in people from the early stages. Like we guide a child to start loving its family members starting with the mother and father. we need to include It as a friend of the child at the early stages. Today we introduce a child to God as someone who will punish or give. But in the process we have distanced him so far away from the child. We need to bring It closer to the child. when the child realises a friend in It and builds this friendship over the years as it grows and develops it will be a much more healthier human being.

What would be one great desire of a human being. It is that they wish they had someone who will solve all the problems for them. Fulfill all the wishes of theirs. Which will guide them through their life. Which remove all the miseries for them. Such a thing they are not able to find in any of the human beings they relate to - mother, father, husband, wife, children, teacher, friend - any one. Finally they come to Him and think he will solve all of them for him. Then they get into ritualistic contracts and transactions. Then when they do not get what they have desired they doubt him or change the ritual (instead of one Guru go to another Guru, add a new temple to go to from now on, introduce a new prayer...). Such contracts do not work and thus he is disillusioned.

Now if they were told that there is It relating to whom all problems will get solved, how nice and blissful will it be. There cannot be a better friend than the It which is supreme, universal, eternal, all knowing, all guiding. But the realisation of the presence of It needs practice like anything else - like learning to play football, football being a game of interest to me; becoming a Doctor, getting educated, trained and practising medicine; becoming a good son, learning the whats and what-nots from parents; becoming a good lover, expressing ones feelings truly and sincerely. The connection to It is there in everything and anything. We need to guide the connection into the human being right from the birth of the child so that it builds a healthy relationship with It from the very beginning. Not in the form of God who is to be feared or kept in the skies but It is to be like a teddy bear to the child close to it which it relates to, cuddles, and finds succor in.

It is a big relief. It just needs us to go beyond or maybe shun the Gods in the way they have been described to us and are made to relate to. An education where the characteristics of It are explained. At some time we are allowed to experiment the relationship with It. Like any friendship it will get strengthened by going through the motions of the relationships dictated by the emotions, thoughts, feelings expressed, accepted or unaccepted. When one is allowed to experiment with It he or she will discover the true friendship with It. He or she will find oneself in a much better mental, emotional state because that is what a good friendship does. One becomes a better person and develops to become a better human being. After all he or she has a superb friend who rids of all the problems, shows possibilities, strengthens possibilities, gives hope, and makes life blissful.

We need to get beyond God. We need to relate to It. It which is universal and eternal. It should be exposed to a child as someone one can befriend. We should allow the friendship to develop through the tests and tribulations of any relationship. We will realise we have a true friend who is there to make everyone of us better.

A Different kind of Punishment for Celebrities

We see that the jail terms announced as punishment to Salman Khan and Sanjay Dutt have attracted lot of attention.

Maybe we could use this attraction to make the society better not just by putting them in jail. Here are some ideas:
Salman could be asked to work with the forest authorities for the next one year to safegurad the forest resources. Or made to campaign to protect wildlife. This way he will be doing sort of penance (by keeping him out of things which he would otherwsie love doing). And also the activities which they will evoke people interest due to their celebrity status.

What about Sanjay Dutt? He could be made to campaign for non violence. Let him preach Gandhian philosophy.
We could leverage their clebrity status to make society a better place.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Why Is First Love Unforgettable?

First love is always unforgettable because of many happy reasons. The thrill of the first flush of romance feels like fresh dewdrops falling on an untouched leaf. It makes hearts beat faster, the birds sing sweeter and the world feel happier!

First love comes unbidden and hits you like a ton of bricks. This happy surprise is the most enjoyable thing about it. Before you realize it, the object of your affection become the most important thing in your life. You adore, praise and wax eloquent over your beloved, you also find moments when you turn an impromptu poet or break into a jig!

The magic of first love can sweep you off your feet. First love has also been the inspiration for many poets, movie makers, artists and creative people whose expressions frequently draw into their earth-shattering experience of first love.

The funny thing about first love is that in many cases it's a strong crush and the target could be anyone ranging from a favorite teacher, painter, preacher or the good-looking neighbor next door.

The first time your beloved expresses love is something very special. It can be as subtle as a soft 'I Love You' whispered in your years or as flamboyant as hiring a hoarding to declare love! Love expressed as a cute little love poem, a mushy card or with a heart-warming teddy-bear are some of the popular means of expressing this emotion. Love mugs, love flowers, heart-shaped chocolates, heart stationery and love song CDS are just a few of the ideal gifts to gift someone you love when you want them to know you love him or her.

First love takes the young lovers to another world oblivious to what happens around them. A world where just the two of them exist, moonlit walks, romantic dinners, long drives, dance and such couple activities feature high on the agenda. Friends might find that they begin to take a back-seat but most good-naturedly understand.

First love is a mix of both a physical and emotional rush of feelings with both running high. With both partners being young, the stirrings of desire awaken and both feel the throbbing physical need. The period is marked by lots of kissing, petting and making out.

First love packs in fine memories of the first experience with the opposite sex. If you are in the throes of it, enjoy every moment, for it's to be cherished for a lifetime.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Famous Britney Spears Quotes

Don't treat me like a little girl.

I think the whole problem was letting too many people into my life. You never know another person's intentions or what another person wants.

Britney Spears, after a brief rehabitation this year.

It’s very simple. Women complicate everything. He’s so simple. His simplicity and just he’s like a boy. He just, you know, and he cares. He cares so much and his heart is awesome. He has a really big heart and I love that.

To NBC’s Matt Lauer on why she loved Kevin

I'm attracted to guys who are really confident and make conversation.

When you're comfortable with someone you love, the silence is the best. And, that's how me and J. are. When we're in a room together, we don't have to say anything. It's for real.

I don't allow anybody to change me. I still walk outta my house in rollers and I take walks. I do not care what people think.

Britney Spears

I didn't know it was going to be that long and everything.

After kissing the Material Girl at MTV's Music Video Awards 2003

I don't like big things. A guy doesn't have to do all that for me as long as I can be with the person that I love and be intimate with him and have a good conversation - I find that romantic.

On what is romance to the iconic pop singer.

With love, you should go ahead and take the risk of getting hurt... because love is an amazing feeling.

I want to wait to have sex until I'm married.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Short Love Songs

A few sweet short love songs I liked.

I want you to want me

I need you to need me

I'd love you to love me

I'm beggin' you to beg me

Cheap Trick

your soft breathing

as I drift into sleep,

your soft breathing

as I wake to birdsong

and our rhythm of love

Amelia Fielden

Love, you're such a sweet thing,

Good enough to eat thing

And that's just a-what I'm gonna do.

Ohio Express

IN the spring I asked the daisies

If his words were true,

And the clever, clear-eyed daisies

Always knew.

Now the fields are brown and barren,

Bitter autumn blows,

And of all the stupid asters

Not one knows.


Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Famous quotes about India

As India completes 60 years of independence, just wanted to share with you some famous quotes on India - from famous westerners. Ought to make Indians proud about their history and culture.

We owe a lot to the Indians, who taught us how to count, without which no worthwhile scientific discovery could have been made!
Albert Einstein

India is the cradle of the human race, the birthplace of human speech, the mother of history, the grandmother of legend, and the great grand mother of tradition. Our most valuable and most astrictive materials in the history of man are treasured up in India only!
Mark Twain

If there is one place on the face of earth where all the dreams of living men have found a home from the very earliest days when man began the dream of existence, it is India.
Romain Rolland

We're living in a time when the world has suddenly discovered India because it's run out of raw material for its imagination. The raw materials for imagination are inexhaustible here.
Deepak Chopra

The surgery of the ancient Indian physicians was bold and skilful. A special branch of surgery was dedicated to rhinoplasty or operations for improving deformed ears, noses and forming new ones, which European surgeons have now borrowed.
Sir W. Hunter (British Surgeon, 1718-1783)

If I were asked under what sky the human mind has most fully developed some of its choicest gifts, has most deeply pondered on the greatest problems of life, and has found solutions, I should point to India.
Max Mueller

India was the motherland of our race, and Sanskrit the mother of Europe's languages: she was the mother of our philosophy; mother, through the Arabs, of much of our mathematics; mother, through the Buddha, of the ideals embodied in Christianity; mother, through the village community, of self-government and democracy. Mother India is in many ways the mother of us all.
Will Durant, American historian who wrote the best-seller "The Story of Philosophy."

There are some parts of the world that, once visited, get into your heart and won’t go. For me, India is such a place. When I first visited, I was stunned by the richness of the land, by its lush beauty and exotic architecture, by its ability to overload the senses with the pure, concentrated intensity of its colors, smells, tastes, and sounds. It was as if all my life I had been seeing the world in black and white and, when brought face-to-face with India, experienced everything re-rendered in brilliant technicolor.
Keith Bellows

India profoundly changed my outlook on life because you see how people can be content and very happy with little or even no possessions. It's the reverse of the West.
Gary Wright

When I die India will be found engraved on my heart.
Queen Mary

It is already becoming clear that a chapter which had a Western beginning will have to have an Indian ending if it is not to end in the self-destruction of the human race. At this supremely dangerous moment in history, the only way of salvation for mankind is the Indian Way.
Dr Arnold Toynbee (British Historian, 1889-1975

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Love Quotes from the Bible

"Love is patient, love is kind, it does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices in truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres."
Corinthians 13:4-7

Prioritize your giving; give to Him first
God will often bless people materially who give first to him
3:10; 13:21

Those who are stingy often end up with nothing
11:24b;11:26b; 28:22

Sunday, July 8, 2007

How to change your Attitude Positively?

A nice tip on why changing your attitude is a surefire way to win in Life. From Mike Moore of Motivational Plus.

Attitudinal transformation takes time, effort and determination but it can be done. Don't expect perfection, just progress. It took a long time to develop negative attitudes and it will take time to transform them. It is also important not to concentrate on more than one or two negative attitudes at once. If you overload your agenda for change you run the risk of becoming discouraged and giving up.

Once you have identified the negative attitude you wish to transform, commit yourself to the process of becoming conscious of that attitude cropping up throughout the day. You will be surprised at how quickly you will become aware of your target attitude. When you are focussed on the attitude, visualize it leaving your body and flying off into the great beyond. Now replace it with a positive attitude and give yourself the suggestion that from now on this will be your dominant thought pattern.
  • Mike Moore
  • Thursday, July 5, 2007

    Monday Morning Quotes

    Develop an attitude of gratitude, and give thanks for everything that happens to you, knowing that every step forward is a step toward achieving something bigger and better than your current situation.
    Brian Tracy

    When you know what you want,and you want it badly enough,you'll find a way to get it .
    Jim Rohn

    May you live all the days of your life.
    Jonathan Swift

    Keep your heart open to dreams. For as long as there's a dream, there is hope, and as long as there is hope, there is joy in living.

    One of the things I keep learning is that the secret of being happy is doing things for other people.
    Dick Gregory

    I just want to do God's will. And He's allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I've looked over, and I've seen the Promised Land.
    Martin Luther King Jr

    Related Motivational Quotes
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    Famous Motivational Quotes

    Wednesday, July 4, 2007

    Thoughts from Bhagavad Gita

    No knowledge is to be found without seeking, no tranquility without travail, no happiness
    except through tribulation. Every seeker has, at one time or another, to pass through a
    conflict of duties, a heart-churning.

    Knowledge is hidden by selfish desire - hidden by this unquenchable fire for

    I (God) am easily attained by the person who always remembers me and is attached to nothing

    Content with getting what arrives of itself. Passed beyond the pairs, free from envy, not
    attached to success or failure. Even acting, he is not bound. He is recognized as eternally
    free, who neither loathes nor craves; For he that is freed from the pairs, is easily freed
    from conflict.

    To action alone hast thou a right and never at all to its fruits; let not the fruits of
    action be thy motive; neither let there be in thee any attachment to inaction.

    Delusion arises from anger. The mind is bewildered by delusion. Reasoning is destroyed when
    the mind is bewildered. One falls down when reasoning is destroyed.

    Fixed in yoga, do thy work, O Winner of wealth (Arjuna), abandoning attachment, with an even
    mind in success and failure, for evenness of mind is called yoga.

    With the body, with the mind, with the intellect, even merely with the senses, the Yogis
    perform action toward self-purification, having abandoned attachment. He who is disciplined
    in Yoga, having abandoned the fruit of action, attains steady peace.

    The Bright one may be taken to mean the path of knowledge and the dark one that of

    He who has achieved even-mindedness by dint of devotion, knowledge and service not only
    obtains the fruit of all his good actions, but also wins salvation.

    One gradually attains tranquillity of mind by keeping the mind fully absorbed in the Self by
    means of a well-trained intellect, and thinking of nothing else.

    Thursday, June 21, 2007

    What women find attractive in men?

    Men have always been intrigued trying to decipher the workings of a female mind. The question of what women find attractive in men is quite interesting to decode.

    The first thing that strikes one is that good looks feature high. A handsome man with looks that can make woman swoon will no doubt have many women trying to get his attention. A well-built and toned body is physically very attractive, so a spot at the gym could improve your prospects. Tall men have always fascinated women and the typical Mills & Boon hero has always been tall and handsome, if you are tall you’re lucky.

    Whether you like it or not, money is a big draw for women. It represents security and the promise of a luxurious life. The idea of exotic holidays, expensive jewelry and clothes that a rich man can lavish on them excites most women.

    If you are not rich or physically attractive don’t get disheartened. Romantic men can sweep the most hard-hearted damsel over. You don’t need to have loads of money to be romantic, write her a cute love poem, dedicate a song to her on her favorite radio channel or take her out to a romantic movie finishing with a dinner where you surprise her with a special cake. There are numerous ways to get romantic, this is one thing that can be developed.

    A good sense of humor is one of the biggest assets a man can possess, it draws women in droves. A man who has a personality that exudes confidence can make a woman feel secure and this is very attractive.

    Tender and caring men figure high on the female wish list. Caring and thoughtful gestures like remembering their favorite dish and ordering it or taking care of her when she is sick will win her over. Offer to babysit a friend’s baby for a while, women love men who like kids.

    Women hate being taken for granted. If you want to woo a woman, take the effort to appreciate the care they have taken to dress or cook a meal and compliment them. So be generous with compliments, but don’t go overboard or you’ll look insincere.

    Men who appear trustworthy and stable will always be in demand. Faithfulness is important to every woman and she will look for those signs in a man. Also it’s important that a man has a steady job or business.

    So if you are a man, use these tips to enhance yourself and then go ahead and find the woman of your dreams.

    Read more interesting stuff on Romance and Love

    Wednesday, June 20, 2007

    Inspirational Bible Quotes

    The Bible has been a fountainhead of wisdom for ages. Drawing inspiration from the famous quotes in God's book can change your life.

    I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, "Move from here to there" and it will move.
    Matthew 17:20

    Ask, and it shall be given you; seek; and you shall find; knock and it shall be opened unto you. For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
    Matthew 7:7-8

    Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.
    Psalm 27:14

    As you think in your heart, so are you.
    Proverbs 23:7

    The truth shall make you free.
    John 8:32

    Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.
    James 1:12

    Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned, forgive, and ye shall be forgiven.
    Luke 6:37

    Let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth and action.
    1 John 3:18 NRSV

    It is more blessed to give than to receive.
    Acts xx. 35

    Let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.
    Galatians 6:9

    Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man
    is being renewed day by day.
    2 Corinthians 4:16

    There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ.
    Galations 3:28

    Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.
    Matthew 7:12

    For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
    1 Timothy 6:10

    Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.
    Revelation 2:10

    They that sow in tears shall reap joy.
    Psalms 126:5

    If God is for us, who can be against us.
    Romans 8:31

    There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear.
    1 John iv. 18.

    Study to be quiet, and to do your own business.
    1 Thessalonians 4:11

    The sleep of a laboring man is sweet.
    Ecclesiastes v. 12

    But you be strong and do not lose courage, for there is reward for your work.
    Chronicles 15:7

    Tuesday, June 19, 2007

    Romantic Gift Ideas for Her each Zodiac Sign

    Looking for Romantic Gift Ideas for Her who belongs to Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, Pisces. Read on for interesting gift ideas by Sun Signs.

    Libran women are the true connoisseurs of beauty so look to buy some charming artifacts for the home – silver cutlery, designer crockery or beautiful personal accessories like pretty jewelry or lingerie.

    Appeal to the passionate side of your Scorpio woman, buy her some fine and expensive lingerie or appeal to her intellect by picking up some books or videos.

    Sagittarian horoscope women love traveling to exotic places and are also quite passionate about sport, so travel accessories or sporting accessories or exercise equipment are a good idea.

    Capricorn women have a deep attachment towards history and tradition. An antique lamp, antique artifact, traditional jewelry, traditional jewel boxes and similar gifts would delight your woman.

    Aquarian women love unusual gifts so designer wear and accessories are hot, also most of them are into astronomy, so a telescope would be a unique gifting idea.

    Pisces women are the soft and dreamy types, perfumes, heart-shaped gift boxes, red roses or anything romantic and sentimental will have a great deal of appeal.

    Now that you have the right cues, go ahead and buy her a gift according to her sun sign.

    More Interesting gift ideas for Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo

  • pick the perfect Sun Sign Romantic gifts for Her, Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo....
  • Wednesday, June 6, 2007

    Sayings about caring for People

    Too often we under estimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.

    Leo Buscaglia

    I'm not supposed to love you, I'm not supposed to care, I'm not supposed to live my life wishing you were there. I'm not supposed to wonder where you are or what you do...I'm sorry I can't help myself, I'm in love with you. Sometimes we feel something slightly unpleasant, but because it's so subtle, we just accept it; we don't do anything about it. Overcare is a good example. We rarely notice when we cross that line from genuine concern into a draining, counterproductive state of overcare. Intellectually, it's a tricky distinction that varies from person to person. But from the heart's perspective, it's not so hard to figure out: overcare doesn't feel good.

    Doc Childre and Howard Martin, The HeartMath Solution

    Underlying the application of care in your workplace is sincerity. Without sincerity caring acts ring hollow. Sincere care is required to achieve a true service attitude with people. When care is mechanical or insincere, it causes resistance and reaction in others, undermining adaptability. Coworkers, family, clients, and superiors can tell the difference between required courtesy and sincere care.

    Doc Childre and Bruce Cryer, From Chaos to Coherence

    Whatever words we utter should be chosen with care for people will hear them and be influenced by them for good or ill.

    Lord Buddha

    Collection of Humility Quotes

    Humility is a virtue practiced by great souls with a display of humbleness enough to shame mortals. Here's a collection of such humility quotes.
    Do you wish to be great? Then begin by being. Do you desire to construct a vast and lofty fabric? Think first about the foundations of humility. The higher your structure is to be, the deeper must be its foundation.
    Saint Augustine

    Humility does not mean thinking less of yourself than of other people, nor does it mean having a low opinion of your own gifts. It means freedom from thinking about yourself at all.
    William Temple

    The only humility that is really ours is not that which we try to show before God in prayer, but that which we carry with us in our daily conduct.
    Andrew Murray

    Blushing is the color of virtue.

    Swallow your pride occasionally, it's non-fattening!

    Nobody stands taller than those willing to stand corrected.
    William Safire

    There is no room for God in him who is full of himself.
    Martin Buber

    I have learned that much of my spiritual progress does not come directly from God, but through my ability to humble myself and hear Him speak through imperfect people.
    Francis Frangipane

    A man can counterfeit love, he can counterfeit faith, he can counterfeit hope and all the other graces, but it is very difficult to counterfeit humility.
    D. L. Moody

    If I only had a little humility, I would be perfect.
    Ted Turner

    Do you wish to rise? Begin by descending. You plan a tower that will pierce the clouds? Lay first the foundation of humility.
    Saint Augustine

    He who sacrifices a whole offering shall be rewarded for a whole offering; he who offers a burnt-offering shall have the reward of a burnt-offering; but he who offers humility to God and man shall be rewarded with a reward as if he had offered all the sacrifices in the world.
    The Talmud

    Some persons are always ready to level those above them down to themselves, while they are never willing to level those below them up to their own position. But he that is under the influence of true humility will avoid both these extremes. On the the one hand, he will be willing that all should rise just so far as their diligence and worth of character entitle them to; and on the other hand, he will be willing that his superiors should be known and acknowledged in their place, and have rendered to them all the honors that are their due.
    Jonathan Edwards

    Humility is not thinking less of yourself but thinking of yourself less.

    After crosses and losses men grow humbler and wiser.
    Benjamin Franklin

    We'd like to be humble...but what if no one notices?
    John Ortberg

    By humility and the fear of the Lord, are riches, and honour, and life.
    The Bible

    Tuesday, May 29, 2007

    Funny Love Quotes

    If love is blind, why is lingerie so popular?

    Author Anonymous

    There is a place you can touch a woman that will drive her crazy. Her heart.

    Melanie Griffith

    Never go to bed mad -- stay up and fight.

    Phyllis Diller

    To be in love is merely to be in a state of perceptual anesthesia.

    HL Mencken

    Marriage is the triumph of imagination over intelligence. Second marriage is the triumph of hope over experience.

    Samuel Johnson

    A man is already halfway in love with any woman who listens to him.

    Brendan Francis

    The sincerest love is the love of food.

    Bernard Shaw

    Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute, and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour, and it seems like a minute. That's relativity.

    Albert Einstein

    Tuesday, May 15, 2007

    The Art of Listening

    One must listen with humility. Forget your own experiences. Stop evaluating as something is being said. Don’t assume things. Don’t let your predetermined image of the person distort what you are listening. As they say, to see a tree you must become the tree, meaning you should not see the tree through the image of a tree already formed in your mind. Each experience is fresh and has to be viewed new every time.

    Don’t interrupt the speaker’s flow of thought. Ask a question to confirm that you were indeed listening. Nod your head to encourage the speaker. If you’ve really missed something, ask him to repeat. Occasional interruptions help to keep in touch with the speaker.

    Listen for gaps between what you say and what you do. This helps to bridge the inadequacies in your personality. It helps you to keep up with your image. It gives you the feedback so vital to plugging the gaps in your character.

    Power of Glamour

    Glamour, that trans-human aura or power to attract imitation, is a kind of vessel into which dreams are poured, and some vessels are simply worthier than others... A beautiful woman can turn heads but real glamour has a deeper pull... Glamour [is] the power to rearrange people's emotions, which, in effect, is the power to control one's environment.

    Arthur Miller

    Friday, May 11, 2007

    Smiles and Love

    Smile at each other, smile at your wife, smile at your husband, smile at your children, smile at each other - it doesn't matter who it is - and that will help you to grow up in greater love for each other.
    Mother Teresa

    Inspirational Zen Story

    There's a classic Zen story about two celibate monks who are walking on a pilgrimage. They come across a girl who is very lovely and beautiful and sexual, and she wants to cross the river. The young monk is attracted to her, and he says, "I'll take you on my shoulders and carry you across the river and drop you off on the other side." He does that, and the two monks continue on their pilgrimage until after a while the old monk starts to have a frown on his face. He's upset. Six hours, seven hours go by, and finally he looks at the young one and says, "I can't believe you did that." "Did what?" the young monk asks. "You carried that woman on your shoulders." "I dropped her off six hours ago," the young monk says. And the old monk responds, "But you're still carrying her."
    Deepak Chopra

    Tuesday, May 8, 2007

    Sad Love Poems

    You are gone

    I used to love you.

    You are gone

    That's the plain truth.

    You are gone

    Never coming back.

    You are gone

    My new heart's black.

    But since you're gone

    I guess it's okay

    To find new love

    The same way.

    Is that alright?

    You won't get mad?

    'Cuz even though we used to be in love

    You've made me sad.

    So You'll repay

    Repay Today.

    For what you did.

    You're paying.

    You are Gone.

    Hollimer Saffron

    Test Your Worth In The Market

    Although even friends, in similar positions, are unlikely to reveal their true packages, they could throw useful light on salaries of peers in other companies. Probe on the fringe benefits. Gain insight into current enumeration trends. Access corporate salary information from the Net, business newspapers or magazine surveys. Drop into recruitment firms and check out for further information. This will tell you how high up you can peg your raise.

    Saturday, May 5, 2007

    Philosophical Quote

    Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forward.
    Soren Kierkegaard, Danish philosopher

    Friday, May 4, 2007

    Love Letter from Robert Browning

    I love your verses with all my heart, dear Miss Barrett, - and this is no off-hand complimentary letter that I shall write, - whatever else, no prompt matter-of-course recognition of your genius and there a graceful and natural end of the thing: since the day last week when I first read your poems, I quite laugh to remember how I have been turning and turning again in my mind what I should be able to tell you of their effect upon me - for in the first flush of delight I thought I would this once get out of my habit of purely passive enjoyment, when I do really enjoy, and thoroughly justify my admiration - perhaps even, as a loyal fellow craftsman should, try and find fault and do you some little good to be proud of hereafter! - but nothing comes of it all - so into me has it gone, and part of me has it become, this great living poetry of your, not a flower of which but took root and grew ... oh, how different that is from lying to be dried and pressed flat and prized highly and put in a book with a proper account at top and bottom, and shut up and put away... and the book called a 'Flora', besides!

    After all, I need not give up the thought of doing that, too, in time; because even now, talking with whoever is worthy, I can give a reason form my faith in one and another excellence, the fresh strange music, the affluent language, the exquisite pathos and true new brave thought - but in this addressing myself to you, your own self, and for the first time, my feeling rises altogether.

    I do, as I say, love these Books with all my heart - and I love you too; do you know I was once not very far from seeing - really seeing you? Mr. Kenyon said to me one morning "would you like to see Miss Barrett?" - then he went to announce me, - then he returned ... you were too unwell - and now it is years ago - and I feel as at some untoward passage in my travels - as if I had been close, so close, to some world's-wonder in chapel or crypt, ... only a screen to push and I might have entered - but there was some slight... so it now seems... slight and just-sufficient bar to admission, and the half-opened door shut, and I went home my thousands of miles, and the sight was never to be!

    Well, these Poems were to be - and this true thankful joy and pride with which I feel myself.

    Yours ever faithfully

    Robert Browning

    Wednesday, May 2, 2007

    Positive Advice on Fitness

    Physical activity helps you lose weight and avoid gaining it back. You don’t need to become a world class athlete, just 20 to 30 minutes of aerobic activity (walking, running, swimming anything that gets your heart pumping) three or more times a week will help you melt away the extra kilos and help you feel better overall. And physical activity has the added benefit of suppressing your appetite and improving your overall health.

    If you think you’re too busy to exercise, remember that you can accumulate those 30 minutes throughout the day (10 minutes in the morning, 10 minutes in the afternoon and another 10 minutes in the evening, for example). This works well if you don’t have time to exercise for 30 minutes all at once. Sedentary people shouldn’t leap into vigorous exercise right away. Start with 5 or 10 minutes of physical activity and gradually increase your time.
    Vandana Luthra

    Sunday, April 29, 2007

    I Love You Poem

    Till we meet,

    Time will just crawl,

    The days will be spent in day-dreaming,

    The nights in fantasy-land!

    My heart beats at a slower pace,

    Except when I hear your voice;

    At first I was a little frightened

    to share myself with you,

    But you soon laid all my fears to rest.

    Till we meet,

    I know that I’ll miss you every moment of the day,

    Minutes seem to be hours,

    Hours run into months

    Each month seems to stretch into eternity...

    Sacrifices and compromises are the order of the day,

    But hopefully one day, they too shall be gone.

    I look up at the stars in the sky,

    But I guess they’ll only sparkle brightly when I’m with you.

    Till we meet,

    Through the fog that envelops me,

    I stare, sightless at the horizon knowing that you are right there,

    The food I eat, tasteless,

    Till you are there by my side to share it with;

    I am tempted to drink myself into oblivion,

    Hoping that will send me spinning into orbit

    And maybe land in a place close to you...

    Where your waiting arms gather me close, never to let go...

    Till we meet,

    I will not feel whole, my world seems incomplete,

    Am waiting for that glorious day

    When our eyes first make contact across a room,

    And recognize each other instantly,

    Wide smiles on our faces, almost breaking into a run

    To cover the remaining distance and turn it into closeness.

    Our bodies and souls collide in blissful memories

    Of words oft-spoken virtually, but now translated into reality,

    ”I love you”....the words will take on another dimension,

    Au revoir till we meet again in the real world....


    Friday, April 27, 2007

    Love your Child

    Love your child unconditionally

    Children long for parental love. The more you express it, the deeper the bond. They derive emotional strength, feel safe and secure in this world and feel wanted when you shower affection. Learn to take the child with all its faults. A child who gets immense parental love will do anything for them. This makes it easy for you to set rules, change bad habits and influence his thoughts.

    Inspiring Plan for the Day

    Do you know what you’ll be doing each hour of the day today? If yes, then you’ve planned for the day. Before Tenzing and Hillary set foot on Mount Everest, they had to find out everything about the snowcapped mountains, terrain, weather, approximate time needed to reach, the distance to be covered and the right time for assault. If they didn’t plan things they’d have surely returned to base unsuccessfully. You need to prepare for any eventuality and not be caught by surprise.

    Thursday, April 26, 2007

    Is your relationship falling apart?

    1. There is a perceptible change in him these days… is it because

    a) He was recently promoted at office, and work keeps him away

    b) You had a fight with him the day before

    c) Hmm… can’t find a reason.

    2. Oflate you seem to be arguing too much:

    a) On just about everything under the sun

    b) About managing the house

    c) Only about the car for your mother-in-law

    3. On the physical side:

    a) Frequency is down by 75%

    b) Was never ever healthy

    c) Both snore at 9 pm even on weekends

    4. When both are at home, you

    a) Have a great time.

    b) Can’t find mutually interesting subjects to discuss.

    c) Invite friends to come over

    5. Dining at a restaurant, you generally

    a) Talk about the birds and butterflies

    b) Relish the food on the plate

    c) Discuss personal problems

    6. Is he/she

    a) Unusually late from office these days

    b) Not keen on cooking anymore

    c) Indifferent to suggestions for improving the quality of life

    7. Oflate

    a) He hates being questioned about anything

    b) He dresses up nicely for no occasion

    c) He is reluctant to accompany you.

    Guess, I don’t have to give the answers. You know the answers.

    Monday, April 16, 2007

    Romantic Love Letter

    ... but I hope my dear Eliza you will find the justice to believe me, when I assure you the love I have for you is founded on the sacred principles of virtue and honour, and in consequence so long as you continue to be processed of these amiable qualities which first inspired my passion for you, so long must I continue to love you.

    Believe me, my dear, it is love like this alone which can render the marriage state happy. People may talk of flames and raptures as long as they please, and a warm fancy, with a flow of youthful spirits, may make them feel something like what they describe; but sure I am the nobler feelings of the heart can only be the foundation of friendship, and it has always been my opinion that the married life was only a friendship, in a more exalted degree.

    Robert Burns

    Friday, April 13, 2007

    Epitaph of Love

    HERE lies a most beautiful lady,

    Light of step and heart was she;

    I think she was the most beautiful lady

    That ever was in the West Country.

    But beauty vanishes, beauty passes;

    However rare--rare it be;

    And when I crumble,who will remember

    This lady of the West Country.

    Walter De La Mare

    Wednesday, April 11, 2007

    Sweet Love Words

    Love one human being purely and warmly, and you will love all. The heart in this heaven, like the sun in its course, sees nothing, from the dewdrop to the ocean, but a mirror which it brightens, and warms, and fills.


    Affections, like the conscience, are rather to be led than drawn; and ‘tis to be feared, they that marry where they do not love, will love where they do not marry.


    Love is never lost. If not reciprocated it will flow back and soften and purify the heart.

    Washington Irving.

    Word of God

    The inspiration of the sacred Scriptures as the very word of God, is manifest by their majesty, their purity, the consent of all their parts, by their light and power to convince and convert sinners, to edify and comfort believers, and to build them up in the character, that prepares for full salvation.

    Wednesday, April 4, 2007

    How Kissing Began

    The kiss was a very ordinary form of salutation throughout ancient times. Plutarch recalls that the conspirators, before kiiiing Caesar, kissed his face, hand and breast. Tacitus says that when Agricola, his father-in-law, returned from Rome, Domitian received him with a cold kiss, said nothing to him, and left him confounded in the crowd. The inferior who could not succeed in greeting his Superior by kissing him, put his mouth to his own hand, and sent him a kiss that the other returned in the same way if he so wished.

    Monday, April 2, 2007

    Tolerance is Strength

    Being kind is 10,000 times more important than being right. That is a hard lesson to learn. When we feel that we are a pawn in a game of injustice, we want to attack. But consider the consequences: pressure (being right) creates more resistance. Tolerance, patience, and understanding (being kind) create reconciliation and acceptance. That is the nature of things: the nature of a university, the nature of a family, the nature of a marriage. The sooner we learn that, the sooner we will be at peace.
    Allen Johnson, Ph.D.

    Childrens Love Quote

    You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth. Let your bending in the archer's hand be for gladness; for even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable.

    Kahlil Gibran, Lebanese Poet

    Sunday, April 1, 2007

    Short Love Verse

    Love is but the discovery

    of ourselves in others,

    and the delight in the recognition.

    Alexander Smith

    Saturday, March 31, 2007

    Stress Management Advice

    Stress is inner biofeedback, signaling you that frequencies are fighting within your system. The purpose of stress isn't to hurt you, but to let you know it's time to go back to the heart and start loving.
    Sara Paddison, The Hidden Power of the Heart

    Passion and Intimacy in Love

    Passion is the quickest to develop, and the quickest to fade. Intimacy develops more slowly, and commitment more gradually still.
    Robert Sternberg

    Monday, March 26, 2007

    Inspirational Interview with God...!!!

    1> What do you think are man's silly mistakes?
    God: He complicates everything simple.

    2> Are women made to be difficult to understand?
    God: Ha ha ha! I expected that to be your first question, he said. They are the simplest
    of my creations, if you can understand them.

    3> I'm surprised: Is it really that simple?
    God: Make her feel secure. Earn her trust. Show commitment.
    Remember her birthdays. Find time for her.

    Ooooh! I realize that. Now.

    4> How to be Happy in Life?
    God: It's very easy. Expect nothing. Give all you have. Sport a Smile. Be like children.
    Speak the truth, Always. Then you don't have to remember Anything.

    5> Why is there misery on earth?
    God: Man's expectations grow faster than his ability to satisfy the same.

    6> When I can't decide on something, what should I do?
    God: Listen to your heart. Not to your Reason.
    God, what about depression after a failure.
    Remember, when you can no longer walk, you'll be a able to fly.

    7> My mind is noisy. How can I listen?
    Only the mind that listens can understand anything. Listening is not passive as most of you think. It means to let a message sink in, without being judgemental. Don't criticise. Don't comment. Let not your conditioning intefere with Understanding what you are hearing. Put off your filters. Let your intelligence take a break. Don't validate anything. Listen with a still, calm Mind. You'll hear the deeper meanings. You'll understand the Truth.

    8> Is it easy to Love people?
    Truth is the foundation on which True Love is built. Lies and falseness can crush a romantic relationship. Sooner or later, the person is going to find out the truth and then the love bonds are gone - disappearing into the thin air.

    When you're wrong or make a mistake, accept it. And the person will forgive you. Not just that. The bonds of Love grow stronger after that.

    9> Do we need conditions in Love?
    The whole world seems to be doing this wrong. As children grow up, we ask them to do certain things. If they do, we shower love on them. If they don't, we scold them. We deny them our love. The teacher does it. The boss is no different. And the partner is the same too. Rejection. Scorn. Cold shoulders. That's what people get when they don't follow the carrot and stick policy.

    Do what I say. Do what I like. And you'll be my best friend. You'll get my Love. But, conditional love works in the short term. Guess we can easily find the answer from our own experiences.

    Unconditional love to children, friends, partners and parents. That's the winning strategy. Try it and you won't regret.