September 21, 2020

11 C’s for success during Covid times of uncertainty

Covid has caused uncertainties in income, health, wellbeing and relationships. Uncertainties can take you into negative spirals of thoughts and emotions specially when there is discomforting news.  Remember these 11 C’s of success while navigating through Covid times of uncertainty. If you sow these 11 seeds now, they will help you live the life of your dreams and at the same time help you to contribute to the betterment of the world. 
  1. Compassion – This is the highest intelligence which is why it comes first. Unless you are doing something for the betterment of humankind in some way you will not have lasting success. Compassion is also the parent of most leadership qualities. Empathy at the workplace and at home keeps everyone motivated and well, which is specially needed during Covid times. 

August 23, 2020

Getting out of negative spirals during Covid

Getting caught in a whirlpool of negative thoughts especially during Covid times is a high possibility for many. Uncertainties cause worry and during Covid times there are many, some of them being:


  1. Your job
  2. Your income
  3. Your health

So how do you stay positive in the face of these dark clouds hovering above you?

Well for starters remember that no cloud is chained to the sky and the adverse situation you may be facing too shall pass.

Do not hesitate to ask for help when you need it. People during Covid times are especially collaborative and will go out of their way to give assistance.

Use positive words instead of negative ones. For example if you are taking an anti-depression drug you can say, “I’m having a mood elevator”. If you are unemployed you may want to say, “I’m looking for a new job that is more fulfilling”. If you have lost some income, say, “I’m bracing for something that will give me a windfall”.

There is a fine line between fear and caution. The one who is cautious can still be courageous. Courageous to live a long life. But the one who is fearful is not at all courageous. So, during Covid times if you are mingling with people please do take precautions of physical distancing and wearing a mask. But don’t go into a fear of Covid and confine yourself into a room, because if you do, your life will come to a grinding halt.

Be courageous to go out into the open with caution appropriate for your individual condition of course. If you get a small load of antigens in the bargain it will only make you and your immune system stronger. The verdict is out by many scientists that life will come back to normal once we as a people develop herd-immunity and herd-immunity happens when a large proportion of a population develops immunity to a disease. So contribute to herd-immunity by going about your work and you will also contribute to moving the economy if you do so. A vaccine when discovered will protect you only for a limited period because of new strains of the Covid virus emerging but a strong immune system will take you through dark clouds whenever they appear.

Don't wait for the storm to pass, learn to dance in the rain

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger

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July 12, 2020

Leadership during Covid times

Covid times require a leader to start with empathy because each one of us including you are equally vulnerable to the following.

  1. Contracting the Covid-19 virus
  2. A drop in income
  3. Restriction of movement

So how do we tackle the above mentioned three aspects with empathetic leadership at home and at the work place?


Preventive measures for Covid-19 (Needs diligence)

Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) - You don’t have to invent the wheel again for implementing preventive measures for contracting the spread of Covid-19 at your home or workplace. The WHO and large manufacturing companies such as Toyota have already come up with SOPs during Covid times. All you need to do is get someone to take responsibility for implementing these measures in your home or workplace and conduct regular monitoring of them. The Covid in-charge actually has to be like a monitor in a classroom calling out persons not adhering to the SOPs. You could even setup or use existing CCTVs for monitors to do their job.

Work From Home (WFH) - Deciding strategically who works from home and when, is an exercise that must be done with focus and understanding. Regular feedback from employees on the pros and cons of working from home on particular jobs must be taken to get a better understanding on what’s working for your organisation.


Tackling drops in income (A hard task that needs gentleness)

Dropping Costs - Dropping costs can offset drops in incomes in a business so that the bottom line doesn’t go into the red. Negotiations with your supply chain will yield results because right now everybody is looking for movement in business so that their revenues pick up even if it is at a discount.

Reduction of Emoluments - Reduction of emoluments of employees have to be handled in small groups and should be need based. You cannot reduce these emoluments to a level where monthly bills and rents cannot be paid by employees. A talk with each level of employee to know their needs and then come to a collective decision will keep the motivations in your organisation charged.

Deep Discounts - Deep discounts on the goods and services you offer will drive your dropping revenues from almost nil to at least 50-60% of what they were pre-Covid. Don’t be penny wise and pound foolish when deciding your discount plans.

Innovation - Innovation is positive and positively the winner of all of the above, for tackling drops in income. Digital platforms have proved their worth during Covid times and are the favoured route for delivery of goods and services during these times. You have to lead the digital transformation of your business whichever way you can and there is no way out for this. Innovation happens with innovative people. Identify the innovative people in your organisation and together with them develop a new product or service strategy. It may not be exactly what the market needs so do a pilot of a Minimum Viable Product to test its performance in the market place. The best designs are those designed with empathy.

Restriction of movement (Try the many options to overcome this challenge)

Video Calls - Depression has to be handled by augmenting your life-satisfaction by having video calls with loved ones regularly and daily calls are recommended.

Exotic Meals - Not being able to go out for exotic meals has to be handled by either learning to cook great meals from the many recipe websites and video channels now available free or ordering in a meal from any of the home delivery Mobile apps operational in your city.

Movies - Not being able to go out for movies has to be handled either by subscribing to movie Apps or channels and watching your choice of films from the comfort of your home.

Shopping - Not being able to shop has to be handled by shopping online from the array of online shopping websites and Mobile apps. Don’t forget to buy your favourite book too and curl up in a cozy corner of your home to read it. This will take care of a lot of Covid-19 adverse conditions.

It seems, all you need is the will to love yourself, love others and love your work to reach a work-life balance to thrive in a Covid world.

We are all in it together

If it’s not empathetic, it’s pathetic - Corona Days

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May 9, 2020

If it’s not empathetic, it’s pathetic - Corona Days



As I wake up I hear the music of birds chirping
The cool air and pure oxygen draw me into deep breathing

There are few deadlines to meet
And I no longer have a beat

Time has become a river flowing
And I don’t know where I'm going

Life is a song I now sing with no end
Targets have little meaning as I can’t control a graphs bend

I have realized that going against the flow becomes a fight
Compassion is the only thing that seems right

If I don’t make a pivot
I will rust along with an old rivet

Video calls with friends make me light
I have started enjoying an extended night..

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May 4, 2020

Covid-19 Paradoxes



Never have I seen such paradoxes that have made thoughts look like boxes.

The air is pure but wearing a mask you have to ensure.

Roads are clear but going on a long drive is unclear.

You have clean hands but there is a ban on shaking hands.

Friends have time to sit together but you can’t get together.

The cook inside you is crazy, but you cannot share your skills as attending parties is hazy.

On every Monday, the hearts of some long for the office buzz but the weekend doesn’t seem to have an end.

Those who have money have few ways to spend it. Those who don't have money have few ways to earn it.

You have enough time but can’t fulfill your desires that are prime.

People are coming into the world without celebrations and going away with few at their last rite ministrations.

The culprit is everywhere but you cannot see where.

For a while you have to stay in this world and find bliss in your inner-world.

When the change happens deep within, only then will a renewed world begin..

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April 26, 2020

Overcoming Pain - Q & A

I went onto a forum that's been created for emotional and spiritual support and was moved to see the painful circumstances some people were going through. I felt very empathetic towards them and delved deep inside myself to give them some answers that I thought may help them, and help others with similar circumstances too. So here are the questions of four people put out on this forum who reached out for help to overcome their pain and each question is followed by my answer for guidance.

Question 1: I started this spiritual journey to awakening about 2 years ago and it seems the further into my journey I get, the more disconnected I feel. I get these feelings like I don’t want to be part of this world anymore. I see more and more the greed, selfishness, meanness, and madness going on and it's so disappointing and disheartening. It's at a level I wouldn’t even be able to describe, but I’m constantly feeling like I want to leave this place and go “home”. Not in a suicidal way but rather in a tired and just need rest kind of way. Like to retire to a familiar, peaceful, comforting place. Is this normal? Is it something I should be working on to “fix”?

Answer 1: A great life skill to have along your spiritual path is to accept others as they are and not have any expectations of them. Expectations reduce joy!

However, for yourself you need to have expectations, otherwise you may not improve and become better!
Life is not about retiring to a familiar, peaceful and comforting space! A ship was not meant to remain at the harbour, but journey through the waves and the weather which are sometimes rough and other times smooth. We are all in this journey in different parts of the ocean and meditation helps the ship to remain in balance as you encounter tough and painful circumstances.
_________________________________________________________________________________

Question 2: I have been in a relationship for about 13 years. We’ve been married for 10.
I have had a tough past and I have been working on releasing trauma, recovering from addictions, working on emotional and spiritual growth. My husband understands my interest but is not involved in any of these topics himself. He is quite closed off emotionally and while he tries his best, he is not able to interact in any other way than strictly rational. As a highly sensitive, intuitive and empathetic person myself, this is very difficult.
As I have been growing over the last few years, I have started to notice patterns and behaviors in our relationship that are not healthy. We never discuss our relationship or emotions. Whenever I try this, he turns the conversation to focus on me and it’s always my issues and problems being discussed. I do not feel emotionally connected to him.
In the past, I think I was happy with this because I didn’t have to look into my traumatic past. But since I chose to work on that, I am struggling with his stonewalling. I do not feel seen emotionally. As a result, I feel I am closing off from him as well.
I have started to realize he is very controlling and anxious, although he will never admit this. He never shares how he feels.
But he does a lot of practical things to help me out in daily life. Seemingly, we have a great life. Lovely home, steady income. No kids (by choice). But I am so unhappy. I am not creating anymore, I used to be a cheerful person, now I’m just sad and negative all the time.
In short, I feel trapped. I feel imprisoned and while I want to get out and claim my own space, I can’t seem to do it. It might be fear because I have no family and I would be alone. On the other hand, I crave finally having freedom and being able to breathe.
I have been looking within, working with the imprisoned feeling, working on inner peace and empowerment. I am trying to hold faith, trust the process and knowing that the time will come, but at the same time I am afraid I am being too passive and I am seeing my life passing by.

Answer 2: I fully understand what you are going through and every circumstance is there to prod you into making a choice to either “wake up” further or remain where you are!
I noticed that in your path of spiritual growth, friendships are missing or maybe you didn’t mention them. Warmth of friendships leads to life-satisfaction. I gently urge you to either join a community of like minded people, develop further your existing friendships by sharing more time with friends or develop a new friendship with the 7 steps of friendship – know, trust, love, embrace, use, help and thank.
_________________________________________________________________________________

Question 3: There isn’t a short way to describe how I got where I  am today or what help I think others could possibly give me but I’m willing to try and think about things in a different perspective.
I left Germany when I was 21 leaving behind all my family for a new life in New Zealand. I had 2 beautiful children to my first husband there, leaving him after 10 years of domestic violence.
I found my soulmate there and he raised my children for 14 years. I lost him in 2011 to cancer. I was devastated and completely lost it for a while.
I met some one new who everyone else hated and two years into our relationship he was arrested. I listened to his story and stood by him, went into witness protection. We came back to Germany to be safe. At first I was working in Germany but then my mother was diagnosed with dementia and I moved in with her so I could help take care of my parents.
He left for New Zealand for his court case two years ago and never returned.
I have been back to New Zealand twice to see my kids who are adults now but my heart is torn. My mother has gone into a home for respite care during the Corona virus outbreak due to aggressive behaviour of my father having put him in hospital.
It's just awful. I’m trying hard to pull myself together and be there for my parents and I know now I can’t go home to New Zealand for the time being. I never thought I would have to face this alone and feel very abandoned by the person I stood by. Despite his past I believed him to be good at heart.
I have thought many times that I wasn’t in a good place when we met and maybe my judgement was off. I have tried to forget the whole episode but he does contact me occasionally and it completely sends me off the rails again.
I believe my biggest problem is that I never thought I would be back in my home town. I left for a reason - a better life. To find myself back here, and worse, alone, is soul destroying.
Two weeks to pull my self together for when my mother comes back home and I will be looking after her and my father 24x7.  I have been caring for them now two years with my sister and we are both worn out. It sounds so callous and I love my parents but should I be giving up making a life for myself in order to care of them?
I’ve made a mess of it all so far and am at a loss. I can pull my girl socks up and get on with it but how do I get back some control in my own life?

Answer 3: You have been through a lot and that makes one stronger and not weaker!
I fully understand that some of the circumstances you have been through can throw you off balance physically, emotionally and mentally and then, it is only the overarching calmness of spirit that can bring you back to balance.
I would recommend daily meditation, prayer and exercise for the moment and the Corona lock-down is a great opportunity to get onto an online learning platform for knowing more about them.
It’s good to be self-sufficient materially and I recommend that you ask yourself 3 questions:
1. What do I love doing?
2. What do my friends think I am great at?
3. What does the world need?
The common points of your answers will give you a way forward to prosper.
_________________________________________________________________________________

Question 4: After a lifetime of unhappiness in an emotionally dysfunctional family, and after my parents died, having that continue with my only 2 siblings (twins) who were constantly judgmental, critical and unsupportive, I have finally “had it”.  And though walking away from the only remaining blood family I had on earth was not what I would have ever chosen, I have finally, with great difficulty, walked away at the age of 65.  Throughout my life, I never had the courage to confront the sibling who was most cruel emotionally (he can be very abrasive, & also, in one instance in our teens, was physically & verbally abusive to our mother).  But recently I wrote a respectful but very honest, open letter, explaining my reasons, and assuring him that I wasn’t angry, still loved him & would be there if he ever needed my help.  And that there was never anything I wanted worse in life than for us to not get along.  It’s been a month now, & no reply or other communication from him since.  The other sibling has now also ceased communication, and barely responds when I attempt the same.  In one way, walking away has been massively freeing & healing.  Yet sometimes I still have feelings of “did I handle this in the best way” and “is there more that I can do”.  And the sadness of having no real blood family now is very difficult at times.  What makes it especially complicated is that in spite of the brother’s verbal abuse, he was often helpful to me with home improvement tasks, etc., also taking me to Emergency Room (ER) twice in recent years, and even staying with me all night there once.  Yet (aside from the ER trips) my time with him was always at a heavy emotional price.  Any time he was helping me with a project, he was also being very critical, condescending & disrespectful – and never had a positive word for me, EVER.
I was constantly bewildered as to where I stood with him.  Still, since I never confronted him, I can’t help wonder if maybe he just didn’t realize what he was doing.  I’m feeling very unsure at this point, as to whether it’s worth trying to have any further conversation with him.
So lately I have pondered 3 questions:
1) Should I visit my brother & ask if he has anything to say to me, and/or if he has any interest in my being in his life.
2) Should I try to explain things to my sister, who has no clue of the kind of things he has said/done, & refuses to believe her twin could be capable of such.  After one brief attempt on my part, she basically accused me of “overreacting to sibling rivalry” (far from true; it wasn’t about disagreements, it was about put-downs.  And for the record, I never once put him down or treated him with disrespect).  She has also quite adamantly in the past stated, “don’t write me any more letters, I can’t deal with them” (although to my knowledge I only wrote one letter about family issues, which was as kind and respectful as I could possibly make it).  Instead of seeing my letter as an attempt at open honesty & a cry for help, she accused me of “drama and bad attitude”.
3) Should I send my sister a short note just saying I’m sorry for the misunderstandings, sorry I could never quite ‘measure up’, that I love her & am there for her if she ever needs my help.
I sincerely appreciate any insight into this matter, as this has been the most difficult cross I have had to bear in my life.

Answer 4: I sympathize with what you have been going through with your siblings and so far you have acted in the best possible way to have an amicable relationship.
Since it hasn’t worked out, perhaps you are being forced by God to go within and find your sibling and mate there. So turn towards daily meditation.

Meditation also has mysterious ways of connecting you back with people who have been estranged. But you just have to let go about when it will happen.
_________________________________________________________________________________

After reading these painful circumstances the least you can do is pray for these souls to overcome their pain with God's grace.

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April 25, 2020

Covid-19 Framework for Leaders and Policy Makers

A. WHY do you need a Covid-19 Framework for Leaders and Policy Makers ?
To reduce deaths due to Covid-19 and yet keep the economy rolling.


B. HOW do you reduce deaths due to Covid-19 and yet keep the economy rolling?

For Public:
  1. Distancing SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures) to be used
  2. Digital Contact Tracing to be used to identify and guide those who came in contact with a Covid-19 positive patient
  3. Sanitisers to be used as per SOP
  4. Masks to be used as per SOP
  5. Personal Protective Equipment to be used as per SOP
  6. Behaviour training and monitoring with video cameras and re-training those who are making mistakes
  7. Immunity building tips
  8. Goods to be received at a premise as per SOP
  9. Persons to enter a premise as per SOP

For Workplace:
  • SOPs
  • Enabling work form home
  • Enabling learn from home

Link - Toyota Restart Manual for Covid-19

For Public Transport:
  • SOPs

For Hospitals and Quarantine Centres:
  • SOPs


C. WHAT do you do for making the public safe especially at workplaces, on public transport, hospitals and quarantine centres and at the same time keep the economy rolling?

  1. Building manufacture and supply chain for Covid prevention and Covid healing items
  2. Building manufacture and supply chain for essential items
  3. Building manufacture and supply chain for economically crucial items
  4. Building an easy to use digital pass system for essential movement of goods and persons
  5. Beat policing and check posts for security and checking unauthorized movement
  6. Digital contact tracing on mobile phone to be developed and promoted
  7. Preparing SOPs with brainstorming of experts and publishing them
  8. R&D and innovation to be encouraged
  9. Building Covid-19 quarantine centres and speciality hospital capacity
  10. Building Covid-19 Testing capacity
  11. Data Collection and Analytics for decision making
  12. Building a Covid-19 knowledge sharing digital platform for sharing and discussion of new methods tried and tested by experts in wellness, engineering, economy and environmental sustainability
D. A HUMANE APPROACH
  1. Encourage systems for distributing food to the needy
  2. Create donation funds for Covid-19 social responsibility projects
  3. Create campaigns for removing stigmas attached to Covid-19 positive people
  4. Do "Direct Bank Transfers" to people in view of loss of income
  5. Provide low interest rate loans and loan moratoriums to people and organisations to tide over the loss of income caused by Covid-19
  6. Talk to your employees to come to an amicable way forward during Covid-19

To all the leaders out there, here are 7 Cs for you during the Corona pandemic - 


Be calm, confident, communicative, collaborative, compassionate, curious and cautious.

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For a deeper understanding of life I recommend the books pictured below

For a deeper understanding of life I recommend the books pictured below
You can get copies of these Bestsellers from your nearest store or amazon.com