Archives for Apr,2016

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Opportunity To Be A Child By Being With A Child

I’ve just had the wonderful opportunity to be a new mother. By undergoing this experience, I’ve realised that everything about me has changed. I am not just talking about the physical changes – no- they are bound to occur. What I want to talk about are the changes I’ve gone through mentally.

I’ve come to realise that I’ve lost all of the limitations that I used to have before. I was extremely conscious about singing earlier but now I don’t care if I sound bad or how people perceive my bad voice. I just look at my daughter and sing songs or nursery rhymes for her. Only for her.

I’ve also noticed a great increase in my awareness levels. I observe all her tiny movements just the way she observes each and every move that I or anybody around her makes. I’m now more open to doings things spontaneously – without having a plan – since my daughter is also very unpredictable and does things as they come to her. I catch myself smiling just at the thought of her smiling. I imitate all the noises and sounds she makes without being anxious about being overheard or laughed at.

All of the things that I was so uncomfortable doing earlier seem easier as a mother. I have lost all my old inhibitions. Only by being with my daughter, I have got such a great opportunity to be like a child myself – uncaring of what the world thinks of me. I’ve become more creative as I need to create my own stories to entertain her. She has been a great opportunity for me to realize that if one way is not possible to do something (like distracting her while she is hurt) there is another choice available. I don’t get disheartened if one way does not work out. I’ve learnt from her to always find alternatives. For example, when I stop her from pulling my hair, she grabs an opportunity to pull it some other time. She doesn’t get upset when stopped. Being with her, I feel like a child myself because I’ve learnt that I don’t need reasons to be happy. I just am happy.

It is true when they say that children are the best source of learning. I’m glad I have the opportunity to be with my source and inspiration all throughout the day and learn new things while rediscovering myself. I think anybody who also needs an experience like this should just meet a child or spend some time really observing them and how they face life with a different perspective.
Believe me, it is an amazing opportunity to be a child by being with a child.

Kiahra Punjabi

Learning Strategist

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One Rule!

I have been in touch with a person who has been attending different training and personal development programs for quiet a few years now and we just had a conversation about how it has helped him in networking and has helped him polish his public speaking skills. However, he was wondering about how all of the other people who attended the same programs were able to use all of their learning and improve every aspect of their personal & professional life be it their relationships with their family, their friends, their colleagues or even their pets. This included their belief in themselves and their dreams and actions. But this man that I am talking about was not really able to work on all of these things. All he could use his learning on was to speak better better on stage and it
never went further than that. After hours of talking we came to a conclusion that this man never really attended a program to learn tools that would improve the quality of his life. He only attended training programs to show people that he was using his time in learning something great and focus on what words or techniques the speaker used to sound good or great on stage. Now, I am not saying that this is not important… it is. But, it is not enough. This should not be the only reason that you attend a personal development program for.

So this person here admitted to me that he actually wanted to learn tools that would improve the quality of his personal life. He asked me how should his mindset be when he attends his next program. We started speaking about how its important to learn from the ones that always focus on having great relationships and make use of all the resources to have a great and the best possible personal life and we came to a conclusion that there are only two beings who do this – “Children and Pets”

Yes, this is true. Then we also spoke about what do they do that we should do when we want to make the best out of our lives. So here is the thing, there is one thing that children and pets do that we should start doing when we attend any personal development programs. “Surrender Yourself”

Yes, this is what they do. Think about a child. How do they start growing and learning things so fast in the 1st few years of their life ? It is because they surrender themselves to their parents. Why do pets always find a way to make you happy or even be happy ? It is because they always completely surrender themselves to the ones they love. When you are in a place where you know you can get resources that would help you in every aspect of your life, Surrender yourself to the person you have come to learn from. It is good to come into a program with a specific goal but that also limits the learning you receive. So surrender yourself completely and come in with the attitude of I will take everything that this program will give me to improve the quality of my life. Read the words very carefully, I’m not saying “I will take everything that this program will give me” what I’m saying is “I will take everything that this program will give me that will improve the quality of my life.”

This way you will still filter things that are dis-empowering. So lets read this once more “SURRENDER YOURSELF” and only then will you be open to receiving and learning new life skills that will help you improve the quality of your life. And if you need any reaffirmation on this, Just look at your Children & Pets.

Amit Punjabi
Founder & Life Coach

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5 Things I Have Learnt From Trekking

From my childhood, my father has pushed me to take part in outdoor activities. I am really thankful to him for having pushed me to take part in outdoor activities. I have realised how important adventure and outdoor activities are to develop and grow not only as a person but also as a leader.

Most people take part in adventure sports and outdoor activities as a break from regular routine. But very few realise what powerful and impactful learnings one can achieve from adventure into their lives. These are some of the things that I’ve picked up over the years:

1. Plan Specifically

By planning I mean by starting with something as simple as blocking the dates first. Once the dates are fixed decide where to go, how to go and with whom to go. The more specific the better. The same way, plan your life’s goals and be specific on the time frame and various other factors. For Eg., A man says that he plans on having a farm in the future. And another man says he plans on having a farm beyond the airport with apple trees by the time he turns 40.

Now, which one seems more likely to achieve his goal? Of course the second. And why? Because he was more specific.

2. Pack Light

When you’re on a trek, always pack light. That’s a very basic rule. The lighter you back, the longer you can go. Same rule applies for life. Approach every situation with a light bag, in other words an open mind. Having an open mind really helps one take back a lot more from every situation. There is a learning in every situation of life. Having an open mind not only helps us learn, but also helps us in dealing with the situation better.

3. Explore!

I remember this one time when I was trekking
and I went off the set path and explored a whole new route by myself and came across the most beautiful stream. It was one of the best experiences of my life. And the reason this was possible was

Life The Adventure Called Life !
Image : Google
because I dared to explore. A lot of times in life, people get stuck in the rut of jobs they don’t even like which causes a lot of stress. The first step to finding the perfect job is to first find it. Which can only be done if one explores and really goes out looking for it.

4. Take Breaks

Sometimes trekking in the heat can really get tiring. It’s important to take good quality breaks by sitting down and sipping water. Hydrating keeps the body able and mind sharp which is very important in the wild. Same way, it’s important to take breaks in life. Breaks can be very simple. By either having just a fun day out with one’s family or even going on weekend getaways. Breaks keeps one’s mind sane and makes life worthwhile. It’s also healthy and gives us time to think about our next step or stage in life.

5. Share ! Share ! Share!

Once I get back from a trek, the first thing I do is to share my pictures and experiences on my social network platforms before I meet my friends and share the amazing experience in person. This not only puts you on the map but it’s a great platform to get great feedback or views. Also you unconsciously empower others to do what you’re doing. Social networking and sharing insights is completely vital for businessmen, especially entrepreneurs. You become an inspiration.

Just like my mentor, Amit Punjabi says, “If you want your life to be an adventure, you’ve got to first start learning through adventure.”

Maanav Kapai

Adventure Coach

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What is AGE?

I have noticed a lot of people say different things about age. Some say that with age comes experience, some say that with age comes maturity and you will hear many more like these. Well, I just realized that there are only 3 things that you get with age.

Let’s think about it.. You cannot say that experience comes with age because everybody experiences different things differently. There are people who start a company at 40 and there are some who start it at 20. Neither does maturity come with age, because some people choose to grow up much earlier in life and some choose to be childish even till they are 50.

Now coming to the point, the 3 things that grow in us as we grow are…Attitude, Gratitude and Ego. May be that’s why we call it AGE.

Attitude + Gratitude + Ego = AGE

1. Attitude – Show it the right way…you are considered smart. Show it the wrong way… You are considered arrogant.

2. Gratitude – Show it to the people who deserve it…portrays greatness. Show it to the people who don’t…portrays utter stupidity.

3. Ego – Use it to for growing …you will earn respect. Use it to put people down…you will earn humiliation & distrust.

Amit Punjabi
Founder

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Innovation – not always about ‘big’ ideas!

A Belief that a lot of people have about Innovation is that it is something huge and a life changing thing! Over the last few months, I’ve grown more observant of Innovation and the ideas that emerge around me & have come to a realization that Innovation is not always about those life-changing and ground breaking ideas but more about the small little situations where creativity and fun ideas are involved.
The kind of people I’ve met and the situations that I’ve come across have made me see many such small situations where ideas, even though really simple and small, turn out to be way more impactful emotionally and psychologically.
Right from me noticing someone painting something so simple and being creative with the colours on his canvas to a photographer creating And capturing a picture perfect moment, right from an ant finding its way around a fallen twig to a mother finding a way to feed her baby or stop it from crying! All these are small instances where ideas that were generated were small yet turned out to be big in terms of results!
Research does say that Idea Generation is one of the most important skills anyone would require to lead a successful life; but what a lot of people lack is the ability to look at this skill at a smaller and more personal level; be it innovating in your personal life to make your relationship more fun and lively or to make your boss trust more in you by making a presentation that’s super creative and innovative. This even extends to taking all resources you have and making a smart business out of it, or taking something ordinary, like juice and making a successful brand out of it.

My only question to you is, are you really looking at generating small ideas that are equally important and equally impactful? Well, its time you start!

Sagar R Gangwani
Ideation Coach

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D-I-S-C-I-P-L-I-N-E

I recently met over several people who had a problem with the word DISCIPLINE. The problem was that people kept telling them that they lack DISCIPLINE at what ever they do and because of this feedback that they kept getting often their performance at their work kept falling down. After having a conversation with these people I realized that the reason this word kept pulling them down is because they did not have any clarity on this word DISCIPLINE. One of them even said “What the hell do they mean by Discipline ? Is this a military camp ? Do they expect me to work with my finger on my lips?” This is when I decided to design a new module on this word and broke down this word for these people so that this word now motivates them and shows them the simple steps towards having DISCIPLINE.

D – DEDICATION
No work can be your best if you are not DEDICATED to it. Take parents for example, the only thing that helps them create a great future for their child is their DEDICATION towards the child’s growth. Be it in sports, academics or any other thing. It is their DEDICATION that shows that they only want the best for their child. So if you want people to see your best at what ever you do first do it with DEDICATION.

I – INTEGRITY
People tend to follow only those leaders who’s character portray’s INTEGRITY. In other words people who value time (their own & others as well) and stick to their words. For example, when I set up an appointment with a client for 9 am in the morning, I just make sure that I am there by 8:55 am. This automatically shows my client my commitment towards their growth & my value for their time and therefore makes the client open to listening to my ideas. So if you want your ideas to be heard and given credibility… Develop INTEGRITY.

S – SUCCESS
Another thing that makes you a valuable person at any organization is your drive to SUCCEED. I have met people who have great ideas but the problem was that no one wants to use them. The reason was that these people used the phrase “This idea could work or help.” This phrase does not show your confidence or power in that idea. If you could just re-phrase this and say “This could get us the SUCCESS we want” people will automatically want to listen more about the idea. This is because SUCCESS is the word that grabs the attention of the most important people in the organization.

C – COURAGE
You may have all the right things in your resume and your character but if you do not portray COURAGE none of it will count. I remember meeting a person who on the second day of his job walked up to his boss and said “I have a few ideas that will help this team perform their best and get the organization brilliant results. It would help all of us grow if you would just give me a chance to share them.” Only 2 out of his 24 ideas were taken into consideration but the boss and everybody in the top management were always ready to listen to him because his character portrayed COURAGE. I like to call it the fuel for growth. So if you think you are great have the COURAGE to say it out loud.

I – INTEREST
Another key to show people your value is to develop INTEREST in their vision and growth. No matter who you talk to, everybody has one question in mind, “What is in it for me?”. The only way people would start being open to taking your support or feedback is when they know that you are also INTERESTED in their personal growth and vision. So take INTEREST in your team’s personal goals.

P – PEOPLE
You can never go further in any field without having support from PEOPLE. Once you have completed the previous step (INTEREST) it will become easy for you to get PEOPLE on board to work with you on your interests and vision. PEOPLE are the best source of stimulus when it comes to creativity and innovation at work. So brainstorm and come up with ideas when you are with your team.

L – LEARN
I have seen a lot of people loose their influence among their subordinates because of their attitude towards LEARNING. You must have heard a lot of people on top positions say “I already know”. Leaders work from the paradigm of “LEARN AND GROW”. It does not matter weather the person talking to you is a junior at work or a cousin who is 20 years younger to you, if you want to keep growing, it is important for you to keep yourself open to LEARNING from everyone who is willing to share their thoughts with you.

I – INVESTIGATE
As mentioned in the Last step, its important for you to LEARN from everyone who is willing to share their thoughts with you. But its not necessary for you to use the LEARNING the way you got it. As you already know, the dictionary meaning of INVESTIGATE – inquire in detail. This is a very important step for a person towards taking smart decisions. Before you implement anything you have learned, its important for you to get into details and understand the different ways to implement and develop the same learning even further.

N – NURTURE
This step becomes automatic once you have taken actions on the previous steps. NURTURING is nothing but bringing up your skills with all the learning you receive. NURTURING helps you transform the environment you work and live in. I had a subject in college “Business Studies” and many of my friends and relatives in other colleges found this subject really tough but every student in my class was able to get brilliant grades in this subject. The reason being our lecturer Mrs. Suman Nayak. Her way of teaching was to get ideas from us (Her Students) on what would be an effective way for us to learn. By subconsciously following all the previous steps she had automatically and naturally NURTURED our growth in the subject and also our growth as LEADERS.

E – EXCITEMENT
This is the one step where most people have a problem. I’m sure you already know that it is a scientifically proven fact that children learn and act faster than the adults. The reason is that children are always excited while they are doing almost anything. If you want to be your best at work or what ever you do you have got to be EXCITED about the results you want to get, The process, the environment and the people you are working with. Also you have got to show and express your excitement as well. This could be a simple smile, a corny joke, an excited hop or a full on jump high in the air with a crazy move !. So JUST BE EXCITED.

Combine all the above and put it in practice and then you will understand the full potential of ‘Discipline.’

Amit Punjabi
Founder & Life Coach

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You’re 20? Good. Now Give up!

What? Did you just read that title right? Now aren’t we supposed to be a Coaching organisation pushing you towards achieving results? And here we are speaking about giving up?

Yes, that’s precisely what we’re going to talk about. In my years of experience as a Coach, if there is one thing that I have seen people struggle with the most, it is Giving Up. However, it is just this one thing that can make major shifts come into your life, if you could just take that small step of giving up! Here are few things that you should look at giving up to lead not only a powerful life but also a content and successful one.

1) Give up Procrastination : Remember that show about Food trucks you saw as a teenager – the one in which you could drive around town and serve people amazing food? Yes, well, now there are at least a dozen well established food trucks in town and all the charm about being the first ever food truck is down the drain. I know so many people who wanted to start something groundbreaking but for some reason, they delayed. Needless to say, they’re still nowhere close to being there and even though they might someday, someone already has started off on their idea. Do not wait for the right time or the right mood to start something, now is as good a time as any.

2) Give up that Piece of Cake : Yes, we’re going there! Chocolate mousse cake topped with heavy cream and everything wonderful you can imagine or that bowl full of yum pasta in white sauce – you need to let that go! Someone I immensely respect once told me , “Everything you dump inside of you in your 20s would come back to haunt you when you’re climbing up that flight of stairs in your 50s.” In that case, what about dreams of skydiving at 90? Give that amazing bowl of food up sometimes so you can chase your dreams no matter how old you get and that bucket list never stops growing!

3) Give up your Friends : This is by far the most repetitive thing you would ever listen to! However, the more I meet people and understand their setbacks, the more true it seems! Friends ditched you last minute on that vacation plan? None of them thought a start-up was a good idea? Did they tell you that that seminar was less important than having chaat outside college? Give them up and go do your thing! You would always reconnect and find your way back to your friends, but not on opportunities that you let go.

4) Give up on that Excuse : I cannot stress on this enough. If you are not where you want to be, if you do not have what you want to have, if everybody seems to be happier than you are – it is only because you are not giving it your all. You either have what you want or you have excuses for why you do not have it. Give that up otherwise you would always find comfort in being surrounded by excuses that you have created in your mind than actually pushing yourself towards being anywhere near to achieving that goal, asking that person out or even finding happiness.

That’s few things that I’ve noticed people in their 20’s need to give up. Let me know if there is something you think that really needs to be given up!

– Shiksha K Sharma
Communication Strategist

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How to put together a good marketing plan for start ups

– Tarunjeet Rattan, Founder, Nucleus PR

When you enter the world of ‘start ups’ you are either about to step into the making of a dream production or a dream life. It’s your call. However both of them require certain common and certain defining elements for it to be a success. But what is that one BIG factor that will single handedly make it an overnight success? What’s that I hear? Good marketing? Hoo boy! So not true. Agreed, that a good marketing plan can drive a start up towards success and rapid growth or completely decimate it. But how do you cull out a good marketing plan for your start up? What you say, how you say it and when you say it can make all the difference between failure and success. What are the elements that need to be defined to make a good and smart marketing plan that will propel your startup towards success? Budget? Reach? Medium? Soooo… not true. Yes, it is a contributing factor but not the core of your plan. Here are the five elements that you need to define to define the core of your marketing plan.

Idea: What’s the idea of the startup? Is it filling a unique need gap or are you just a different version to an existing idea? What is the USP of the venture? How relevant is it in this day and age and for how long? Good sustainable startups that will last and become legendary brands are those that fill a unique market need gap and solve a pressing issue with a kick ass idea. Today. And yet has the potential to expand and adapt to changing times.

Execution: Having an idea is great but unless it is planned and executed well there is not much it can do towards the contribution of your success. The market is abound with ‘good’ ideas that flop and ‘borrowed’ ideas that are super successful. The key being the execution of the idea.
Team: So you have a great idea and a good plan towards seamless execution to it as well. But how do you do it? As entrepreneurs we all seem to assume that we have some hidden super powers and burn the midnight oil…and ourselves with it … to get things done. This is a fact based on the assumption that ‘If it has to be done…then I have to do it myself.’ Not only is this time consuming but also inefficient. If you are trudging along with an oxygen mask by the time you launch the idea because of the time or the effort it took you to launch it… you are going to end up spending all that monetary success in your hospital bills. Having a good team in your start up is crucial to the success of your venture.

Intention: This will differentiate your start up from being just a dream production or a dream life. What drove you to start the venture? What is the motivation and intention of it? Once you gain clarity on this it will define your company and will influence every decision that you take for the company. Once the intention is defined it will always be the driving force for the growth of your company. And no, this is not something you can push off to deal with later. If you want your company to succeed then define this and put it into words as quickly as possible.

Commitment: Another important factor to the differentiation mix. Your commitment to your idea will define its success. Are you in it for the short term or longer? Whatever it is…define it and stick to it. This will again influence a lot of your decisions for your start up.

Bandwidth: Can you handle the attention marketing will get you? Do you have the bandwidth to quickly move to full capacity and more? This often becomes the key to initial success. The first series of customer experience is crucial to the very credible and essential word-of-mouth recommendation routine. If this is amazing then you are on your way to success else it has a cataclysmic domino effect on the whole marketing efforts which is very difficult to come back from. Once a customer moves on from your service or product s/he has lots of other options to choose from. Before you start any kind of marketing efforts ensure that you have the capability to handle more. Think of a number that you can handle and double it. Do a dry run before dipping your toes into marketing.

Only after you have defined all the above do you come to marketing. Yes, this will also be a huge differentiation factor that will set you apart from the rest. A smart marketing plan will have you be the talk-of-the-town in no time. You can either choose to create a huge buzz about nothing with a huge budget or use it to connect with your potential and existing customers and inculcate strong brand loyalty. It is the core of your marketing plan that will define this leading to failure or life-long success. The above six factors are crucial to it. It will make all the difference between your customer scratching their heads trying to recall and figure out what you offer to rooting for your success and become vested in it. Once that is set the marketing decisions compliment, refine and magnify the same and are driven by these parameters. Medium, budget, methodology are all defined by it. Remember, a marketing plan will amplify your core values and messaging so make sure that the core of it is in place.

You can connect with the author on twitter (@mindtweak123) and LinkedIn.

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