Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Six Rules on How to Be Successful by Arnold Schwarzenegger

Six Rules on How to Be Successful
1. Trust yourself
2. Break some rules
3. Don't be afraid to fail
4. Ignore the naysayers
5. Work like hell
6. Give something back.
Well, thank you very much. (Applause) Hello, everybody. What a great introduction, what a wonderful thing. What a great, great welcome I'm getting here, so thank you very much. I mean, I haven't heard applause like that since I announced that I was going to stop acting. (Applause)
But anyway, it is really terrific to see here so many graduate students and undergraduate students graduating here today. I heard that there are 4,500 graduating here today, undergraduate students, so this is fantastic. There are 2,200 men, 2,300 women and five have listed yourselves as undecided. (Applause)
So this is really a great, great bunch of people here, I love it. But seriously, President Sample, trustees, faculty, family, friends and graduates, it is a tremendous privilege to stand before you this morning. There's nothing that I enjoy more than celebrating great achievements. And I don't just mean your parents celebrating never having to pay another tuition bill, that's not what I'm talking about.
I'm talking about just celebrating the great accomplishment. So let me congratulate the Trojan class of 2009 on your graduation from one of the finest universities in the world. Let's give our graduates a tremendous round of applause. What a special day, what a great accomplishment. (Applause)
Now, this an equally special day, of course, for the parents, for the grandparents, siblings and other family members whose support made all of this today possible. And let's not forget, of course, the professors, those dedicated individuals who taught you, who came up with exciting ways to share their vast wisdom, knowledge and experience with you.
And I must also say thank you to President Sample for honoring me with this fantastic degree. Thank you very much. Wow, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Doctor of Humane Letters. I love it. (Applause) But, of course, I noticed that it wasn't a doctorate in film or in cinema or in acting. I wonder why?
But anyway, that's OK. I take whatever I can get. But maybe now since I'm the doctor, I can go back up to Sacramento and maybe now the Legislature will finally listen to me. (Applause) But anyway, I stand before you today not just as Dr. Schwarzenegger or as Governor Schwarzenegger, or as The Terminator, or as Conan the Barbarian, but also as a proud new member of this Trojan family.

"Just remember, you can't climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets." 

Now, some of you may know that my daughter just completed her freshman year right here. One of the most exciting things for me has been to learn about the great traditions that make this university so wonderful and so special.
My daughter told me all about, for instance, the Victory Bell. She sat me down and she told me it weighs 295 pounds and how the winner of the annual football game between USC and UCLA takes this bell and gets to paint it in the school colors. And I stopped her in the middle of talking, I said, "Wait a minute, Katherine, back up a little bit. UCLA has a football team?" (Applause)
Now, of course, my daughter's journey here at USC is just beginning, and yours is ending. I know that you're a little bit stressed out right now as you start this exciting new chapter in your lives. Some people say it is scary to leave the comfort of the university and to go out into the cold, hard world.
But I have to tell you something; I think this is a bunch of nonsense because after all, this is America. This is the greatest country on earth, with the greatest opportunities. (Applause) It is one thing if you were born in Afghanistan or in Swat Valley in Pakistan where you'd be forced to join the Taliban or be killed. Now, then I would say yes, that is a little bit scary.
But this, this is going to be a piece of cake for you, trust me. You live in America and you're prepared for the future with this tremendous education you have gotten here at one of the greatest universities in the world. This is going to be exciting, it's a great adventure and this is a new phase in your life. This is going to be awesome. (Applause)
Now, of course, this journey is not going to be without any setbacks, failures or disappointments. That's just the way life is. But you're ready and you are able, and you would not be here today with your degrees and with your honors if you wouldn't be ready.
So now, of course, to help you along the way, I thought that the best Schwarzenegger gift I could give you today is to give you a few of my own personal ideas on how to be successful. And parents, I just want you to know, maybe you should close your ears, you should plug your ears, because maybe there a few things that you maybe won't like in what I have to say.
But anyway, I can explain how I became successful and who I am today by going through what I call Dr. Schwarzenegger's Six Rules of Success. (Applause)
Now, of course, people ask me all the time, they say to me, "What is the secret to success?" And I give them always the short version. I say, "Number one, come to America. Number two, work your butt off. And number three, marry a Kennedy." (Applause)
But anyway, those are the short rules. Now today, I'm going to give you the six rules of success. But before I start, I just wanted to say these are my rules. I think that they can apply to anyone, but that is for you to decide, because not everyone is the same. There are some people that just like to kick back and coast through life and others want to be very intense and want to be number one and want to be successful. And that's like me.
I always wanted to be very intense, I always wanted to be number one. I took it very seriously, my career. So this was the same when I started with bodybuilding. I didn't want to just be a bodybuilding champion, I wanted to be the best bodybuilder of all time. The same was in the movies. I didn't want to just be a movie star; I wanted to be a great movie star that is the highest paid movie star and have above-the-title billing.
And so this intensity always paid off for me, this commitment always paid off for me. So here are some of the rules.

The first rule is: Trust yourself

And what I mean by that is, so many young people are getting so much advice from their parents and from their teachers and from everyone. But what is most important is that you have to dig deep down, dig deep down and ask yourselves, who do you want to be? Not what, but who.
And I'm talking about not what your parents and teachers want you to be, but you. I’m talking about figuring out for yourselves what makes you happy, no matter how crazy it may sound to other people.
I was lucky growing up because I did not have television or didn't have telephones, I didn't have the computers and the iPods. And, of course, Twitter was then something that birds did outside the window. I didn't have all these distractions and all this.
I spent a lot of time by myself, so I could figure out and listen to what is inside my heart and inside my head.
And I recognized very quickly that inside my head and heart were a burning desire to leave my small village in Austria -- not that there was something wrong with Austria, it's a beautiful country. But I wanted to leave that little place and I wanted to be part of something big, the United States of America, a powerful nation, the place where dreams can come true.
I knew when I came over here I could realize my dreams. And I decided that the best way for me to come to America was to become a bodybuilding champion, because I knew that was ticket the instant that I saw a magazine cover of my idol, Reg Park. He was Mr. Universe, he was starring in Hercules movies, he looked strong and powerful, he was so confident.
So when I found out how he got that way I became obsessed, and I went home and I said to my family, "I want to be a bodybuilding champion."
Now, you can imagine how that went over in my home in Austria. My parents, they couldn't believe it. They would have been just happy if I would have become a police officer like my father, or married someone like Heidi, had a bunch of kids and ran around like the von Trapp family in Sound of Music.
That's what my family had in mind for me, but something else burned inside me. Something burned inside me. I wanted to be different; I was determined to be unique. I was driven to think big and to dream big. Everyone else thought that I was crazy. My friends said, "If you want to be a champion in a sport, why don't you go and become a bicycle champion or a skiing champion or a soccer champion? Those are the Austrian sports."
But I didn't care. I wanted to be a bodybuilding champion and use that to come to America, and use that to go into the movies and make millions of dollars. So, of course, for extra motivation I read books on strongmen and on bodybuilding and looked at magazines. And one of the things I did was, I decorated my bedroom wall.
Right next to my bed there was this big wall that I decorated all with pictures. I hung up pictures of strongmen and bodybuilders and wrestlers and boxers and so on. And I was so excited about this great decoration that I took my mother to the bedroom and I showed her. And she shook her head. She was absolutely in shock and tears started running down her eyes.
And she called the doctor, she called our house doctor and she brought him in and she explained to him, "There's something wrong here." She looked at the wall with the doctor and she said, "Where did I go wrong? I mean, all of Arnold's friends have pictures on the wall of girls, and Arnold has all these men.
But it's not just men, they're half naked and they're oiled up with baby oil. What is going on here? Where did I go wrong?" So you can imagine, the doctor shook his head and he said, "There's nothing wrong. At this age you have idols and you go and have those -- this is just quite normal."
So this is rule number one. I wanted to become a champion; I was on a mission. So rule number one is, of course, trust yourself, no matter how and what anyone else thinks.

Rule number two is: Break the rules

. We have so many rules in life about everything. I say break the rules. Not the law, but break the rules. My wife has a t-shirt that says, "Well-behaved women rarely make history." Well, you know, I don't want to burst her bubble, but the same is true with men.
It is impossible to be a maverick or a true original if you're too well behaved and don't want to break the rules. You have to think outside the box. That's what I believe. After all, what is the point of being on this earth if all you want to do is be liked by everyone and avoid trouble?
The only way that I ever got anyplace was by breaking some of the rules. After all, I remember that after I was finished with my bodybuilding career I wanted to get into acting and I wanted to be a star in films. You can imagine what the agents said when I went to meet all those agents. Everyone had the same line, that it can't be done, the rules are different here. They said, "Look at your body. You have this huge monstrous body, overly developed. That doesn't fit into the movies. You don't understand.
This was 20 years ago, the Hercules movies. Now the little guys are in, Dustin Hoffman, Woody Allen, Jack Nicholson." Before he gained weight, of course, that is. But anyway, those are the guys that were in. And the agents also complained about my accent. They said, "No one ever became a star with an accent like that, especially not with a German accent.
And yes, I can imagine with your name, Arnold Schwartzenschnitzel, or whatever the name, is, on a billboard. Yeah, that's going to draw a lot of tickets and sell a lot of tickets. Yeah, right." So this is the kind of negative attitude they had.
But I didn't listen to those rules, even though they were very nice and they said, "Look, we can get you some bit parts. We can get you to be playing a wrestler or a bouncer. Oh, maybe with your German accent we can get you to be a Nazi officer in Hogan's Heroes or something like that."
But I didn't listen to all this. Those were their rules, not my rules. I was convinced I could do it if I worked as hard as I did in bodybuilding, five hours a day. And I started getting to work, I started taking acting classes. I took English classes, took speech classes, dialogue classes. Accent removal classes I even took.
I remember running around saying, "A fine wine grows on the vine." You see, because Germans have difficulties with the F and the W and V, so, "A fine wine grows on the vine." I know what some of you are now saying, is I hope that Arnold got his money back.
But let me tell you something, I had a good time doing those things and it really helped me. And finally I broke through. I broke through and I started getting the first parts in TV; Streets of San Francisco, Lucille Ball hired me, I made Pumping Iron, Stay Hungry. And then I got the big break in Conan the Barbarian. (Applause)
And there the director said, "If we wouldn't have Schwarzenegger, we would have to build one." Now, think about that. And then, when I did Terminator, "I'll be back," became one of the most famous lines in movie history, all because of my crazy accent.
Now, think about it. The things that the agents said would be totally a detriment and would make it impossible for me to get a job, all of a sudden became an asset for me, all of those things, my accent, my body and everything.
So it just shows to you, never listen to that you can't do something. And, "You have to work your way up, of course, run for something else first." I mean, it was the same when I ran for governor, the same lines, that you have to work your way up, it can't be done. And then, of course, I ran for governor and the rest, of course, is history.
They said you have to start with a small job as mayor and then as assemblyman and then as lieutenant governor and then as governor. And they said that's the way it works in a political career. I said, "I'm not interested in a political career. I want to be a public servant. I want to fix California's problems and bring people together and bring the parties together.
So, like I said, I decided to run, I didn't pay attention to the rules. And I made it and the rest is history. Which, of course, brings me to

Rule number three: Don't be afraid to fail.

Anything I've ever attempted, I was always willing to fail. In the movie business, I remember, that you pick scripts. Many times you think this is a wining script, but then, of course, you find out later on, when you do the movie, that it didn't work and the movie goes in the toilet.
Now, we have seen my movies; I mean, Red Sonja, Hercules in New York, Last Action Hero. Those movies went in the toilet. But that's OK, because at the same time I made movies like Terminator and Conan and True Lies and Predator and Twins that went through the roof.
So you can't always win, but don't afraid of making decisions.
You can't be paralyzed by fear of failure or you will never push yourself. You keep pushing because you believe in yourself and in your vision and you know that it is the right thing to do, and success will come. So don't be afraid to fail.

Rule number four: Don’t listen to the naysayers.

How many times have you heard that you can't do this and you can't do that and it's never been done before? Just imagine if Bill Gates had quit when people said it can't be done.
I hear this all the time. As a matter of fact, I love it when someone says that no one has ever done this before, because then when I do it that means that I'm the first one that has done it. So pay no attention to the people that say it can't be done.
I remember my mother-in-law, Eunice Kennedy Shriver, when she started Special Olympics in 1968 people said that it would not work. The experts, the doctors that specialized in mental disabilities and mental retardation said, "It can't be done. You can't bring people out of their institutions. You can't make them participate in sports, in jumping and swimming and in running. They will hurt themselves, they will hurt each other, they will drown in the pool."
Well, let me tell you something. Now, 40 years later, Special Olympics is one of the greatest organizations, in 164 countries, dedicated to people with mental disabilities and that are intellectually challenged. (Applause)
And she did not take no for an answer. And the same is when you look at Barack Obama. I mean, imagine, if he would have listened. (Applause) If he would have listened to the naysayers he would have never run for president. People said it couldn't be done, that he couldn't get elected, that he couldn’t beat Hillary Clinton, that he would never win the general election.
But he followed his own heart, he didn’t listen to the "You can't," and he changed the course of American history.
So over and over you see that. If I would have listened to the naysayers I would still be in the Austrian Alps yodeling. (Laughter) I would never have come to America. I would have never met my wonderful wife Maria Shriver, I would have never had the wonderful four kids, I would have never done Terminator, and I wouldn't be standing here in front of you today as governor of the greatest state of the greatest country in the world.
So I never listen that, "You can't." (Applause) I always listen to myself and say, "Yes, you can."
And that brings me to rule number five, which is the most important rule of all: Work your butt off. You never want to fail because you didn't work hard enough. I never wanted to lose a competition or lose an election because I didn't work hard enough. I always believed leaving no stone unturned.
Mohammed Ali, one of my great heroes, had a great line in the '70s when he was asked, "How many sit-ups do you do?" He said, "I don't count my sit-ups. I only start counting when it starts hurting. When I feel pain, that's when I start counting, because that's when it really counts."
That's what makes you a champion. Arnold Scvhwarzenegger in Kindergarten CopAnd that's the way it is with everything. No pain, no gain. So many of those lessons that I apply in life I have learned from sports, let me tell you, and especially that one. And let me tell you, it is important to have fun in life, of course.
But when you're out there partying, horsing around, someone out there at the same time is working hard.
Someone is getting smarter and someone is winning. Just remember that. Now, if you want to coast through life, don't pay attention to any of those rules.
But if you want to win, there is absolutely no way around hard, hard work.
None of my rules, by the way, of success, will work unless you do. I've always figured out that there 24 hours a day. You sleep six hours and have 18 hours left. Now, I know there are some of you out there that say well, wait a minute, I sleep eight hours or nine hours. Well, then, just sleep faster, I would recommend. (Laughter)
Because you only need to sleep six hours and then you have 18 hours left, and there are a lot of things you can accomplish. As a matter of fact, Ed Turner used to say always, "Early to bed, early to rise, work like hell and advertise."
And, of course, all of you know already those things, because otherwise you wouldn't be sitting here today. Just remember, you can't climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets.
And that takes me to rule number six, which is a very important rule: it's about giving back. Whatever path that you take in your lives, you must always find time to give something back, something back to your community, give something back to your state or to your country.
My father-in-law, Sargent Shriver -- who is a great American, a truly great American who started the Peace Corps, the Job Corps, Legal Aid to the Poor -- he said at Yale University to the students at a commencement speech, "Tear down that mirror. Tear down that mirror that makes you always look at yourself, and you will be able to look beyond that mirror and you will see the millions of people that need your help."
And let me tell you something, reaching out and helping people will bring you more satisfaction than anything else you have ever done. As a matter of fact today, after having worked for Special Olympics and having started After School Programs, I've promoted fitness, and now with my job as governor, I can tell you, playing a game of chess with an eight-year-old kid in an inner city school is far more exciting for me than walking down another red carpet or a movie premiere.
So let me tell you, as you prepare to go off into the world, remember those six rules:
Trust yourself, Break some rules, Don't be afraid to fail, Ignore the naysayers, Work like hell, and Give something back.
And now let me leave you with one final thought, and I will be brief, I promise. This university was conceived in 1880, back when Los Angeles was just a small frontier town. One hundred and twenty-five classes of Trojans have gone before you. They have sat there, exactly where you sit today, in good times and in bad, in times of war and in times of peace, in times of great promise and in times of great uncertainty.
Through it all, this great country, this great state, this great university, have stood tall and persevered. We are in tough times now and there's a lot of uncertainty in the world. But there is one thing certain; we'll be back. (Applause)
And we will back stronger and more prosperous than ever before, because that is what California and America have always done. The ancient Trojans were known for their fighting spirit, their refusal to give up, their ability to overcome great odds.
So as you graduate today, never lose that optimism and that fighting spirit. Never lose the spirit of Troy. Because remember, this is America and you are USC Trojans, proud, strong and ready to soar. Congratulations and God bless all of you. Thank you very much. Thank you. (Applause)

Monday, December 7, 2015

A poem for a city under fire!!!!!

On my 13th day of winter vacation,
Thought to write something that came in my notion.
My mind is hot and eyes are cold,
And continued to write about story repeatedly told.
Circuits are dead and corpses are alive,
And that’s the truth, I’m not telling you the lie.
Winter is on and summer has gone,
Showering in the sunlight, I’m sitting here alone.
Alone in the sun, I’m taking the bath,
And pondering on, what will happen aftermath?
Nothing is goanna happen because this city has become dead.
Decisions were not taken and rules not made,
City is in dark and there is a situation of black out.
Still there is silence and nobody is out,
Optimism has grabbed everybody’s soul.
And that’s why non-blinded person not seeing the loop hole.
Dissent lies in everybody’s heart,
And eventually someone has to take the start.
Call of the hour is to light up that dissent,
And come down to the street and have the protest.
I’ve see the journey of best getting worst,
And time has come to develop that thirst.
It is the same country having a golden history,
But what went wrong, still remains a mystery.
And now lies a possibility of dark future ahead,
It’s time to make amends before its too late…..

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Engineering your life

Go to google.com.

Type ‘define: engineering’ and hit the enter button.
The branch of science and technology concerned with the design, building, and use of engines, machines, and structures. The action of working artfully to bring something about.

That’s what Google says. But in India, engineering means different. Engineering means respect. Engineering means regard. Engineering means that you have made your father proud. Engineering means that you have made your clique proud. Engineering means that you have subsequently increased your dowry by few lakhs. Engineering means that some of your relatives have become jealous of you. Engineering means that you have done something fruitful. And so if engineering means more and then it demands much more.
But what if you aren’t an engineer. According to some hypocrite people, it means that you have just been deprived of power that is vested to you by the constitution of India via Article 21. The freedom of living. You don’t have ‘right to live’. And so it’s better that you commit suicide. And every year many guys do so.
The result times are some of the toughest ones. It just takes a few seconds to access the result, but many days to accept the same. The result that sometimes surprises you. The result that sometimes disappoints you. The result for which it takes months of preparation. The result for which you have to load tons of frustration.
During result time, no one talks much. Neither you nor your parents. Verbal communication ceases and non-verbal communication finds its new importance. Eyes talk a lot and you too reply with your eyes. Eyes express yours feeling better than your patois.
And as soon as the result is declared, you become numb for a time frame. It doesn’t matter whether you have succeeded or not. In either condition, you are going to lose your friends.

The worst part of success is trying to find someone who is happy for you. – Bette Midler

Those few black inked characters on the screen convey a lot. Your phone begins to ring. Your friends begin to call up. They begin to show up. If you have made it, you just want to say it to everyone. But if you haven’t, you just switch off your mobile. You just want to stay in your home coiling up by yourself.  You think and then you repent. The whole world seems to be asking you about the result. You want to escape this competitive world and search your solace. You want to be surrounded by someone who is true, someone who could pat your back and say ‘Hey, it’s OK’. But the reality is the far distant cousin of fantasy.

Parents begin to doubt your hardship. And you lose your confidence. You begin to think about your teachers who somewhere in your past had assured you of your success. You begin to think about all those friends who had praised you for your talent. They were so damn wrong. You were so damn wrong that you got flattered by those comments. Your neighbors begin to show up. They begin to judge you.If you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing it is stupid.

They want to know about your result. And they end up the conversation talking about the result of their distant relative. And in each case their relatives override you. You don’t want to talk with them, but your father has to. You remain in your room and you ignore the conversation. You don’t want to listen to them, but you can’t help yourself from hearing them. You finally sense the soreness that your father’s voice is laden with. You coil yourself even more than a snake. You do keep staring anything that comes in your line of sight. Your mother approaches you with her silence and tries to break yours but in vain. She assures you that everything is goanna be alright. But it’s you and only you who know that nothing is going to happen alright. You begin to tame a ghost in your heart. And that ghost reminds you about your failure whenever you try to be smart. That ghost is going to chase you for the rest of your life. All your life.
Everyone seems to be a stranger to you. And you too want the same. Each guy approaching you for the first time seems to make you uncomfortable. He might ask you about your result. The conversation ends up very quickly. And all the time, it ends up with the suggestion. The guy who doesn’t knows even the Newton’s second law of motion or secant of 30-degree passes by giving you an advice. One of those many things that you already have in abundance.
But life is not about how bad you fall after it hits you. It’s all about how you dare to stand up and hit it back with more intensity.

Nights are longer for those who dream. Days are longer for those who work hard to realize those dream.

You work hard and harder. You run the race. It doesn’t happen easily. If it would have been easy, anybody could have hit the bull’s eye. But life tests hard. And accepts only those who are tougher than the toughest. Finally, you have become someone, but not an engineer. You have created your identity but not as an engineer. You have found your niche and that’s too without being an engineer. Life is what you make it. And life is not about being an engineer. It was never about being an engineer and it will never be. You are more than that and you deserve more. One day you will have your footprint on the pages of history and sands of time. You have to believe in something because you have no other choices. In fact, you never had any. It’s time to Run.

This article is an excerpt from my book  'The Cut-Off List' 

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Bullying in School

I don’t exactly remember the year but it was during my 7th or 8th grade. There was a guy in my class who always used to take the last seat of class. He used to wear very thick specs that rested very difficultly over his big nose. He had a slender body which any nutrition company could look up to for its newspaper advertisement. And the students of my class referred him as a loser. One day he finally opened up to me and gave me all the reasons for being irregular in the class. He told me that students make mockery out of him. They laughed for no specific reason. He didn’t like that. He chose to remain silent. And he was right. He remained silent for the next many months. In the following year he didn’t enrolled himself in the same school and I don’t exactly remember where he headed to?

This sight is common in every class of every school present across the length and breadth of our nation. That is what bullying refers to. But I just gave you an example at a very miniature level. There are over 8, 97, 00,000 search results on Google when you Google the same. This is something that we don’t remember. Or the other social problems of our society like eve-teasing, inequality, rape and others have an edge over this issue. But the essence of all these malpractices halt to a basic intuition and that is dominating nature; master- slave concept.

If you don’t want to be a slave then you have none of any right to be a master at all. You don’t have to be of dominating nature and influence your power for the same. This is something that world needs to know and we must campaign for it. What’s the point of bullying? To feel better? You will never feel better if the only thing you know is to make others suffer.

The most shocking fact about bullying is the etymology of word itself. The word "bully" was first used in the 1530s meaning "sweetheart", applied to either sex, from the Dutch boel "lover, brother", probably diminutive of Middle High German buole "brother", of uncertain origin (compare with the German buhle "lover"). The meaning deteriorated through the 17th century through "fine fellow", "blusterer", to "harasser of the weak". And it continued for next many centuries.

Various attempts have been made and various organizations all over the world are trying their best to tackle this menace. US Govt. even has special twitter account that goes by the name @StopBullying.Govt to confront these type of situations. But still hundreds of such cases crop out every day and even at this very moment when you are reading this, someone somewhere in the world must be getting bullied. We live in a democratic world and voices can’t be suppressed. In fact it shouldn’t be suppressed to any micro extent.

“I am not a joke, so stop laughing at me.”

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

International Literacy Day

Apart from birth date of famous persona like Asha Boshle and Wiz Khalif and apart from being celebrated as victory day in Pakistan, this day has its own meaning. It is also celebrated as literacy day. It will not come as a surprise if this reminder may have slipped out of your mind. September 8 is a special day. In fact it has been a special day since 1966 when it was first celebrated. The moment was November 17, 1965 when finally September 8 was decided to be celebrated as International Literacy day by UNESCO. The memories may have faded, but the power of that magical moment must never be forgotten. And from then we have never looked back. The world’s illiteracy halved between 1970 and 2005.
“Literacy is a key driver for sustainable development” This is what unesco.org states apart from ‘Literacy and Sustainable Societies’ being the theme of this year’s literacy day. But why education and literacy? That is one of the basic question that may dart across your lobes.  There are other factors that have the capabilities and possibilities to be the key driver for sustainability. But the world insists on eradicating illiteracy; It has an edge over other world’s problem like poverty, gender inequality etc. Gandhiji believed that mass illiteracy is India’s sin and shame and must be liquidated. “Literacy could be ladder out of poverty and Literacy is a bridge from misery to hope” The former statement was said by Morgan Freeman while Kofi Anan concluded the latter one.  However the essence and instinct of both sayings halt to a basic intuition and that is the importance of the literacy and education.
India is a young nation and will be younger by 2020. Let me support mine argument with facts and figure. By 2020, the average age in Japan is going to be 47; China will be heading well past 40; Europe 46; United States will also pass 40 and India's average age is going to be 29. So we are potentially the people who are youthful, productive, dynamic, young population, ready to work, and transform the world, the kinds of role that, say, China played in the last generation could be ours in the next. But do we have the ability to equip the people to take advantage of this, to be the workforce of the work engine for the world? We have come a long way. The Britishers had left us in 1947 with 12% literacy rate and today we have moved to 75% (2011 data).  And the leaders of our nation must be applauded for the same but it’s not the time to relax.  We have to go miles. Eradicating illiteracy is not only ‘sarkari netas’ problem. It’s our fundamental duty too to contribute to our society. Our society is the mirror of our contemporary era. You may love your people and you may hate too. You may criticize your people and you may praise them. But you can never ignore them. We need to step out and scream our voice loud for the same. Help the local NGOs which are already fighting for the same cause. Help your society. This society has always matters to you a lot. Its time when you could matter to them.

Gift a book. After all a book is a gift that you can open again and again.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

The man who has no inner life is a slave to his surroundings

When I heard about the topic, the first thing that came in my mind was to Google it. I hadn’t heard about the same in years. And then after googling it I finally came to know that this is a quote from the Swiss philosopher Henri-Frédéric Amiel. So does this quote matters? Can you relate yourself with the topic? Are you living your life with passion? I don’t know myself. And do I have enough credentials to talk on a certain topic about which I, myself don’t know where do I stand.
When people grow, the basic and the most inevitable thing that they begin to do is to think. They begin to think about their surroundings. They begin to think about their parents. They begin to think about the people who care for them and somehow and somewhere they begin to think about themselves.  They begin to mould their dreams and then they begin to choose their role models. They begin to search for someone to whom they could relate to and someone to whom they could look up to. But somehow down the line they stop being themselves. They begin to supress their inner voice for someone else’s voice. They begin to compromise and finally they don’t realise themselves when they become a slave of their surroundings.
The most basic question that haunts anybody from his/her very tender age is the question about his ambition. ‘What you want to become in your life?’ And whatever may be your answer, the essence of each and every answer halts to a very basic intuition and that is success. I want to be successful and you too want to be successful. In fact every other guy in this world wants to be successful; even those guys who don’t know the proper pronunciation and enunciation of the word ‘success’ wants and quests for the same. But still few guys make it to the greener side. Why? In fact I don’t know myself. Have you ever searched ‘success’ on Google. Believe me; they have 1,07,00,00,000 search results for the same. And now search for ‘hard work’. And guess what? They do have 55, 80, 00,000 results for that. The numbers have not been manipulated or exaggerated. Do you see the difference?  Hard work is the first step of the ladder of success. Hard work is tough.  It’s not easy. It if had been easy every guy would have been done it. But still we couldn’t make it. The real problem is that, we live in a world where fishes are taught to climb the tree. And the amusing part is that we have begun to enjoy the same. We too have joined the same league. We don’t allow ourselves to hear our heart. When you have a dream, it doesn’t often come out screaming in your face. Dreams always come behind you and doesn’t come in the middle of our eyes. Dreams do whisper and never shouts. It’s very hard to hear. And you have to act for that thing that merely whispers in your ears and rarely shouts. You have to make a declaration and you have to go all out for the same. You don’t need to survive. You need to live. You must choose a profession that satisfies you. The only way to do that is to do what you believe is a great work and the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking and don’t settle. But in reality, guys do give up their dreams. They begin to fake themselves and mostly they fail down their journey. They start looking for someone to blame, so that they could pile up all the bitter and wrong-doings on someone else’s back. Life ain’t sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and it will hit you straight in the middle of your mouth. It’s going to paralyse you and will beat it to your knees, if you let it. But in spite of all those beatings, we need to keep moving and doing things that are considered out of the box. The moment you say ‘no’ to your inner voice, you push you dream for further weeks, for further months and even for years. The last chapter of your life hasn’t been written yet. And it doesn’t matter what happened yesterday. What matters is what you are going to do about that. You could both fall back and join the league or either stand back and throw a hell of a jab. Your time is limited. So don’t waste it living others life. Do you remember what you did on 15th August, 2015? The moment when you were enjoying the independence of our nation, millions of guys out there were working hard for the reliability and sustainability of our nation. The Sensex surged 3.05 % and the companies became million more valuable. For you it was a day to enjoy but for others it was just another day. They all were working hard. They all were listening to their inner voice. They all were doing what they love and believe is a great work. And somehow at the same time you and I were gossiping, were talking ill about others and were doing unfruitful work.

We need to believe in ourselves and we need to hear our inner voice. That’s pure probability. Either you win or lose. But the probability of failure is 100 % when you don’t even attempt. Make a choice. Just decide, who you goanna be, how are going to do it.  People are rewarded in public for what they do for years in private. Live your life with your passion. You need to step out of your comfortable zone and work like a hell. You need to act. 
And remember that you can’t climb the ladder of success with hands in your pocket. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Independence Day Special

It was 15th august 1947 and Pt. Nehru said, "Long years ago we made a tryst with destiny, and now the time comes when we shall redeem our pledge, not wholly or in full measure, but very substantially. At the stroke of the midnight hour, when the world sleeps, India will awake to life and freedom. A moment comes, which comes but rarely in history, when we step out from the old to the new, when an age ends, and when the soul of a nation, long suppressed, finds utterance......”  The memories of the 1st Independence Day may have faded, but the power of that magical moment must never be forgotten. India became independent and it was an effort of many nationalist leaders. Freedom gave us hope, independence gave us courage, democracy gave us rights and responsibilities; nation-building defined our charter.
India has always been great because of its diversity. You can be a good Keralite, a good Muslim and a good Indian, all at once. We are what we are because we have the right to be who we are. As Shashi tharoor says," If America is a melting pot, then to me India is a thali, a collection of sumptuous dishes in different bowls. Each may not mix with the next, but combine on your plate to produce a satisfying repast ". For a long time America  had its Latin motto ' E Pluribus unum ' - out of many one . If India had a similar Latin motto then it would be 'E Pluribus Pluribum' - out of many, many.
But still being so rich in ancient history and civilization there are some loop holes and we have to work collectively to make India a superpower of 21st century. India is not an underdeveloped country.
India is not as people keep calling it an underdeveloped country, but rather in the context of its history and cultural heritage, a highly developed one in an advanced state of decay. Our situation is just like half-filled glass of water. For an optimist it is half-full and for pessimist it is half empty .We can't pretend more that we don't have problems. We are having problems and we have to uproot them from very core level. There is an environment of dissent in our country and dissent is like Gurkha 'khukuri' ,once it emerges from its sheath it must draw blood before it can be put away again . I don’t want you to bombard the streets with placards. I don’t want you to do the dharna. I just want to tell you that doing such things doesn’t make you a good patriot. You are better one and you deserve best. Picking up a sweet wrapper and throwing it into dustbin, asking for a bill when you purchase any product: these are some basic things that you can do. These are the things that you should do.
India is a developing country and we Indians have to be optimist. Grass is always greener on the other side of the fence and now it’s time to make grasses greener on our side of the fence. It will take time. Rome was not built in a day. We will wait and so are waiting billions of Indian hearts full of wishes, desires and patience.

Freedom isn’t free at all. It comes with the highest of costs. The cost of blood. Blood of martyrs and fighters that were drained away. And now after years of independence, we take our democracy for granted. We often forget that it was leaders like Nehru and Patel who ensured that this newly formed state may not get into the hands of any dictator. Their respect for the democratic conventions and institutions ensured our democracy and we need to sustain that. I just want to tell you that next time when you post a page long article on social networking sites questioning about your fundamental rights, do ensure that you may give a thought to your fundamental duties too. I know that these things are not going to raise your CPI or SPI just like inflation. I know that these things are not going to save your broken relationship. But somehow it matters. I know it’s late. But you have heard the saying. ‘Better late than never’. India has always mattered to you, to us and to everyone. Its time when we could matter to her. 

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Five stages of grief. 'Never Heard. Never Told'

Well it is the word that I came across when I was watching ‘Million dollar baby’. After watching the movie I searched it on google and then I read its Wikipedia page. In the plot it was written that Eastwood experiences five stages of grief and then I came to know about this theory. I found it quite catching and worthy to share.
The Kübler-Ross model, or the five stages of grief, is a series of emotional stages experienced by survivors of an intimate's death, wherein the five stages are denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

The model was first introduced by Swiss psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross in her 1969 book, On Death and Dying, and was inspired by her work with terminally ill patients
Kübler-Ross noted that the stages are not a complete list of all possible emotions, and can occur in any order, and that not everyone who experiences a life-threatening or life-altering event feels all five of the responses.

The stages, popularly known by the acronym DADBA, include

a.       Denial — One of the first reactions is Denial, wherein the survivor imagines a false, preferable reality.
b.      Anger — when the individual recognizes that denial cannot continue, it becomes frustrated, especially at proximate individuals. Certain psychological responses of a person undergoing this phase would be: "Why me? It's not fair!"; "How can this happen to me?"; '"Who is to blame?"; "Why would God let this happen?".
c.       Depression — "I'm so sad, why bother with anything?"; "I'm going to die soon so what's the point?"; "I miss my loved one, why go on?"
d.      During the third stage, the individual becomes saddened by the certainty of death. In this state, the individual may become silent, refuse visitors and spend much of the time mournful and sullen.
e.      Bargaining — the fourth stage involves the hope that the individual can avoid a cause of grief. Usually, the negotiation for an extended life is made with a higher power in exchange for a reformed lifestyle. Other times, they will use anything valuable against another human agency to extend or prolong the life. People facing less serious trauma can bargain or seek compromise.
f.        Acceptance — "It's going to be okay."; "I can't fight it, I may as well prepare for it."
In this last stage, individuals embrace mortality or inevitable future, or that of a loved one, or other tragic event. People dying may precede the survivors in this state, which typically comes with a calm, retrospective view for the individual, and a stable condition of emotions.
Kübler-Ross later expanded her model to include any form of personal loss, such as the death of a loved one, the loss of a job or income, major rejection, the end of a relationship or divorce, drug addiction, incarceration, the onset of a disease or chronic illness, an infertility diagnosis, and even minor losses.

Both sufferers and therapists have reported the usefulness of the Kübler-Ross Model in a wide variety of situations. The subsections below give a few specific examples of how the model can be applied in different situations:

§    Children grieving in divorce
a.       Denial
Children feel the need to believe that their parents will get back together, or will change their mind about the divorce. Example: “Mom and Dad will stay together.”
b.      Anger
Children feel the need to blame someone for their sadness and loss. Example: “I hate Mom for leaving us.”
c.       Bargaining
In this stage, children feel as if they have some say in the situation if they bring a bargain to the table. This helps them keep focused on the positive that the situation might change, and less focused on the negative, the sadness they’ll experience after the divorce. Example: “If I do all of my chores maybe Mom won’t leave Dad.”
d.      Depression
This involves the child experiencing sadness when they know there is nothing else to be done, and they realize they cannot stop the divorce. The parents need to let the child experience this process of grieving because if they do not, it only shows their inability to cope with the situation. Example: “I’m sorry that I cannot fix this situation for you.”
e.      Acceptance
This does not necessarily mean that the child will be completely happy again. The acceptance is just moving past the depression and starting to accept the divorce. The sooner the parents start to move on from the situation, the sooner the children can begin to accept the reality of it.[3]
§    Grieving a lost amorous relationship
a.       Denial
The person left behind is unable to admit that the relationship is over. He/she may continue to seek the former partner's attention.
b.      Anger
The partner left behind may blame the departing partner, or him/herself.
c.       Bargaining
The partner left behind may plead with a departing partner that the stimulus that provoked the breakup shall not be repeated. Example: "I can change. Please give me a chance." Alternatively, he/she may attempt to renegotiate the terms of the relationship.
d.      Depression
The partner left behind might feel discouraged that his or her bargaining plea did not convince the former partner to stay.
e.      Acceptance
Lastly, the partner abandons all efforts toward renewal of the relationship.
§    Grieving in substance abuse
a.       Denial
People feel that they do not have a problem concerning alcohol or substances. Even if they do feel as if they might have a small problem they believe that they have complete control over the situation and can stop drinking or doing drugs whenever they want. Example: “I don’t have to drink all of the time. I can stop whenever I want.”
b.      Anger
The anger stage of abusers relates to how they get upset because they have an addiction or are angry that they can no longer use drugs. Some of these examples include “I don’t want to have this addiction anymore.” “This isn’t fair, I’m too young to have this problem.”
c.       Bargaining
This is the stage that drug and alcohol abusers go through when they are trying to convince themselves or someone else that they are going to stop abusing in order to get something out of it or get themselves out of trouble. Example: “God, I promise I’ll never use again if you just get me out of trouble.”
d.      Depression
Sadness and hopelessness are important parts of the depression stage when dealing with a drug abuser. Most abusers experience this when they are going through the withdrawal stage quitting their addiction. It is important to communicate these feelings as a process of the healing.
e.      Acceptance
With substance abusers, admitting the existence of a problem is different from accepting the problem. When a substance abuser admits that he/she has a problem, this is more likely to occur in the bargaining stage. Accepting that he/she has a problem is when you realize that you have a problem and start the process to resolve the issue.
As stated above, Kübler-Ross claimed these stages do not necessarily come in order, nor are all stages experienced by all patients. She stated, however, that a person always experiences at least two of the stages. Often, people experience several stages in a "roller coaster" effect—switching between two or more stages, returning to one or more several times before working through it.  Women are more likely than men to experience all five stages.

However, the Kübler-Ross hypothesis holds that there are individuals who struggle with death until the end. Some psychologists believe that the harder a person fights death, the more likely they will be to stay in the denial stage. If this is the case, it is possible the ill person will have more difficulty dying in a dignified way. Other psychologists state that not confronting death until the end is adaptive for some people.

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