Being in the zone!

The Universe is always giving us signs. However, we are for the most part oblivious of these signs.

As your awareness grows, you notice these signs more. Rumi the Sufi mystic says: “What You Seek is Seeking You”.  Rumi exhorts us to never give up on our dreams because hidden in those dreams is our roadmap for growth and evolution.

According to Sufi mystics, we are a part of existence and hence all the dreams we seek are already a part of our existential consciousness. In short, the universe endorses our dreams. You would not have had the desire if the universe did not will it.

When you are attracting the right people in your life and are aware of it; it is a sign that you are in the zone. Capitalize on the privilege!

Alignment!

You can set any goals that you like. However, you will need the support of others to realize your dreams. They constitute your power squad! If you fail to engage them, they will be passive staff waiting for instructions before they commit to anything.

One of the things you notice across the world in different corporations is the lack of alignment between top management, middle management, and the “floor staff.” For example, after a two full-day session with the top management of a reputable bank, it felt great as they were enthusiastic, energetic, and buoyant. However, at the end of the two days, I had a dinner meeting with another client from a different business. The client shared with me an incident involving poor customer service that had happened to her that day in the same bank. I was surprised that the negative encounter had taken place with a teller, but as I reflected on the previous two days’ sessions, it was clear to me that while the bank’s top management was doing great, morale on the floor was low. This was costing the client in terms of reputation, credibility, and brand damage. Alignment of all levels is crucial for achieving success.

Just as aligning at all levels of your team at work is important so is aligning your own personal, family, and corporate values because it creates congruence and sustains your success.

Finally, as you engage your power squad be grounded in principles. Without a compass for truth, external success is short-lived!

Positive Change

In stable times, habitual patterns work for you. They become your preferred patterns of reacting. It gives you a sense of control.

A customer delays payment. You then send in the standard follow-up letter. You take the same route to work every day. You don’t have to map it out in your mind every morning. It’s almost as if every turn were programmed into your car’s steering. Taking that route is an involuntary choice.

Your life seems to be on auto-pilot and your story seems uneventful enough. The plot thickens when certain things around you begin to change.

A new thoroughfare opens up and makes it easier and more convenient to take another route. But you still find yourself habitually going the old way until you consciously establish a new pattern. For a while, you have to map out the new route mentally and force yourself to take it instead of the old route.

Change stops the process of involuntary actions and forces us to reconsider. It disrupts the pattern and demands that we respond appropriately. So our focus is invariably on adjusting to the change or fighting it. But change is not always about adaptation, it can also signal an opportunity for creating something better. Uber did not disrupt the average taxi service because it used technology for online booking. It succeeded because it created a better experience for the customer.

Next time, instead of fighting change or surrendering to it, find out how it can help you to create a better outcome for yourself and others.

Authentic!

Have you ever seen a bird struggle to fly, a flower struggle to bloom or a star struggle to shine? Why then are humans struggling so much?

There are primarily three reasons for this:

• You have been conditioned since childhood—by parents, teachers, and peers—so you have learned to comply instead of being yourself

• You are fearful—you feel within that you are not good enough; therefore, if you become true, people will see your faults

• You have a scarcity mentality—you feel that if you are true, people will know everything about you and take advantage of you.

If you let go of all these unnecessary inhibitions, you begin to fly like a bird, bloom like a flower, and shine like a star – so natural and effortless!

Being authentic means being genuine and original. In other words, being the real you! This should be a piece of cake yet so difficult for most people.

One Idea!

Some of the world’s greatest musicians, surgeons, writers, CEOs, athletes use this approach – it’s called internalizing success; making your success or the outcomes you want a daily part of your active imagination.

This art works on a simple but fundamental premise that what you focus on, you attract in your life. The greatest inventions of today began as an idea in somebody’s mind.

And now there is scientific data to support this premise. Scientists believe that our mind experiences real and imaginary actions in similar ways. So every time your brain learns something new, the neurons inside of it create a pathway. The more you use this pathway the more it becomes a habit.

Let’s explore some tools to create the success we want in our lives by internalizing the results we want.

1. Visualization – As soon as you wake up, spend the next three minutes imagining and feeling your best day ever.

2. Vision board – Visuals communicate ideas and stories instantly with impact and emotion. Kate Perry in an interview with MTV described how as a nine-year-old, she had created her vision board by pasting a picture of her favorite star, Selena, (who had then just won a Grammy Award), holding her golden statuette. Fifteen years later, Kate was nominated for her first Grammy Award.

3. Affirmations – An affirmation like a mantra is a powerful statement that describes the outcome or the goal that you are aiming for. It functions on the simple premise that you become what you think. Reiterating an affirmation several times a day not only keeps your mind focused on the goal, but also strengthens your resolve. Once you repeat your affirmations daily, they become a part of your subconscious mind and subliminally prime your whole being for that state of energy. Using clarity, length of time, frequency, and intensity in affirmations add power to your results.

Make the outcome of your one idea the daily part of your active imagination!

Let Go!

We all harbor a tendency to be sentimental about our past. A certain touch of regret, nostalgia, hurt, or romanticism lingers on, depending upon what we are thinking about, lending an ethereal sublime touch to our life. But this lingering feeling is based on an illusion because the past does not exist anymore, only its consequences. That does not mean you should not value the past. Before you bid goodbye, take a moment to acknowledge it, understand it, and savor each strand before you surrender it to the sea of yesterdays.

Every interlude building on our story, layering it with different hues and colors to create a kaleidoscope of life that we take with us, wherever we may go next.

Yet for many, the past is a painful place. It is not easy to forget or forgive, or easy to let go, and its shadow lingers on in their present subduing every new experience and interaction.

So how do we deal with a painful past?

1. Realize that the past is no more – Come to think of it, everything you do, you feel, or think about is in the present moment. Even if you are thinking about the past, you are doing it in the present.

2. Don’t let your past cloud who you are – We inherit many qualities and traits from our past. We have to discover who we are as individuals first, and only carry what agrees with our experience and reasoning.

3. You can pick and choose your memories – A memory is like a thought. A thought has no power to affect us unless we give attention to it. Yes, certain memories are life-changing or very painful, and hence difficult to let go of. But if you focus on watching them instead of going along with them, your very watching can create that shift and release you from their hold.

4. Assume full responsibility for your life – You are the captain of your ship. And while you cannot change circumstances, you have the power to choose your response to them.

5. Let go of the drama – Many of us have a set of special victimhood stories. Instead of building on the drama and repeating the cycle, be the change maker, the catalyst that will snip the process midway and create joy instead.

Effective Meetings

Here are eight keys for organizing an effective meeting:

1. Define the objective – Visualize the end result in graphic detail right down to the emotions. This will help you to clarify the big picture and your role in it.

2. Once you visualize your desired outcome right down to its bare essentials, it becomes easy to release the stronghold of any negative emotions.

3. Distribute the meeting memo and share the agenda a few days in advance to give adequate time for preparation. 

4. Clarify the outcome where all parties come back satisfied or at least with a certain measure of acceptable gain.

5. Start the meeting on time and end it on time (or even early if possible).

6. Step away from a boxed-in ‘either-or approach’ to evaluating several new chains of thoughts and ideas.

7. Do not allow anyone or two people to dominate the meeting.

8. A positive ending always wraps up the meeting with everyone feeling motivated to carry on the next steps with enthusiasm and confidence. 

9. Close the meeting with a clear outline of the next steps as well as what kind of a review mechanism will be adopted. Address who will do the review, when, and how.

Finally, the key to a successful interaction or exchange, or any business for that matter is rooted in a quote by late Zig Ziglar: “You will get all you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.”