How do you fight complacency?

Every one of us gets complacent in one area of life or the other. Complacency can lead to failure and crisis.

Complacency is a function of seriousness and awareness.

Low seriousness and low awareness is the cause of many problems- I am not serious about my fitness and I am unaware of my weight, as I don't monitor it. I am also careless about the food I eat and I am unaware of the consequences of eating such food. I am in the Zone of the Complacent

Low seriousness and High awareness: As things deteriorate and I get overweight, I am aware of my condition, but I am still not serious about it. I let things happen to me and the result is, I am well on my way to obesity. I am in the Zone of the Paralyzed.

High seriousness and Low awareness: As people begin to make fun of me and I begin to feel the after effects of obesity, I decide to get serious and now want to reduce my weight. At this stage my awareness suddenly dips to a new low, as I do not know which exercise to choose from and how to exercise.
In the event, I choose to exercise after consulting a doctor, say going for a brisk walk, I may still fail to monitor my weight as weeks go by. I live in a Zone of Illusion, thinking that I am taking appropriate steps to reduce my weight, but actually I am not getting any results.

High seriousness and High awareness. I am now aware that I took exercise for granted and it is not yielding any results. I decide to continue exercising and begin to monitor my weight. I also begin to do some form of dieting. This brings me results! I am in the Zone of Results.

I am happy now but if I am not careful, I can go back to the complacency zone; I can feel content by my small progress and regain my weight back or as I continue to exercise, I suddenly realize that I am stagnating as no further weight reduction is happening. Now I need to get to the next level of seriousness and awareness, as I have to explore and learn new exercises and get more in depth knowledge of my diet options. The journey continues...

Once I reach my ideal weight, I need to get my seriousness and awareness to a whole new dimension in order to succeed to maintain that weight. I need to seriously consider changing my lifestyle for good.

The Complacency-Results Matrix* is a powerful matrix that can be applied to many areas of life.

Try it out and enjoy the great feeling of being in the results zone consistently.
*© Muralidharan jayaram

Is the world full of average people?

Last evening I went for a walk, as a part of my routine, to get some exercise. As I walked, I saw a group of people watching TV in an apartment. They were all glued to their TV set. This triggered a thought in me of how many people waste their time, in front of their television, watching meaningless programs.

As I thought more and more, my reflection bought me to a fundamental question: Is the world filled with average people?; I don't know, may be it is, but what I do know is what makes people average. Let me list for you some of the characteristics that could make you and I an average person:

"Average" portrait

You are average,
If you work only for your wage,

You are average,
If you don't get out of your cage,

You are average,
If you can't read beyond a page,

You are average,
If you pollute your mind with garbage,

You are average,
If you always fear the stage,

You are average,
If you can't control your rage,

You are average,
If you don't strive to be a sage,

You are average,
If you don't give life its due weight age,

You are average,
If you choose just to wait and age.*

I am sure we can add a lot more to the list. Being average is a choice many people make. Some people live their entire lives with that choice, a few others break out of the pack to reach the heights beyond their dreams.

It is important to be aware of this choice to be average, by examining our lives thoroughly. For most of us, the choice was made unconsciously. Examining this choice and changing it is an important internal work we need to do.

If we don't do this important internal work and change our choice, we will miss out on our opportunity to contribute meaningfully to this world we are living in.

Muralidharan Jayaram

Do you turn a prince into a frog?

We were shopping in a mall and I saw a couple, so lovingly, buying clothes for their children. The mall was filled with kids of different ages-infants to teenagers. Seeing all of them, I began to wonder what is in store for them, when they grow up.

I remember the time, when I left home at the age of 19 and went to another town for a job. In the first week itself, a customer behaved very rudely to me. I remember going back to my room, missing my home and parents and suddenly realizing how safe and filled with love my home was, in stark contrast with the crude and rude world outside.

All responsible parents raises their children with lots of love and care. Children are treated as princes and princesses and pampered with a balance of discipline. The result is they grow up with a lot of self-esteem and are ready to face the world.

However, there are parents who are irresponsible and raise their children as frogs, ill treating them. These children grow up with poor self-esteem and are poorly equipped to face the world.

When I meet people, I search for the prince or the frog hidden in them. Nowadays, I am more and more aware that the person in front of me is a result of the loving efforts of his parents. I am careful in my interactions with him because I don't want to turn this prince into a frog, by deriding him and lowering his self-esteem.

Similarly, I don't want to turn a frog into a tadpole, rather I would like to turn him into a prince, hopefully.

What about you? Do you turn princes into frogs often?

Think about it while you are interacting with the next person you meet after reading this post.

Look Ma no hands!

I was watching a kid go round and round on his cycle. Slowly, as he gained confidence, he screamed with joy, “Mummy, Mummy- Look!", for he had taken his hands off the handle of the cycle; He and the machine had become one. I am sure that this boy, like most of us, will continue to exhibit this behavior of trying to impress others for the rest of his life.

Right from childhood, we want to impress and gain approval of others who matter to us. As years go by, people get substituted or added while we pursue to meet our need for approval.

As you look back, you may be surprised, as I did, to observe that the list of people who you want to impress has changed over a period of time. Moreover, many of them are not there with you anymore, either they have moved away or you have.

However, there is one person who has always been with you and will always be with you; That person is no other than you. As I thought in these lines, I suddenly realized, how little effort I take, day in day out, to try to impress myself.

I decided to do the following:

Bring excellence in everything I do that will impress me first before anyone else is impressed

Dress in a manner that I look into the mirror and say Wow! before anyone else says WOW!

Put in every effort to contribute to others and say thank you before anyone else says thank you

What about you? When was the last time you did something in such a manner that you yourself were impressed, before anyone else was?

The more genuinely you try to impress yourself and succeed in wholesome areas of your life, the easier it will be for you to get others to say WOW! Even if they don’t appreciate what you have done, you still have the one person who will be at your side always that is you.

In this complex, high stress, multitasking world of today, you need first yourself by your side, more than anyone else; And impressing, gaining approval and confidence of this important person will be the primary determining factor for your success in all areas of your life.

How are you utilizing the resources you already possess?

How are you utilizing the resources you have? Have you explored them thouroughly?

I have a lot of gadgets which I am not utilizing to their fullest potential. My Palm Treo, I use it more as a phone and to store data, rather than as a full fledged digital assistant.

My Nikon D 80 SLR camera has many features I don't even understand, leave alone use. I have a TV and I find myself watching it at random, rather than exploring and watching meaningful programs. I have an Adobe photoshop software which I have still not used, not even once.

Recently, I asked my colleague to practice his presentation in front of his camcorder. He said, "Wow! that's a great idea and I wonder why it never occured to me" and I thought to myself that there are others too in the same "club" I am in and that made me feel slightly better.

If we really look around, we have a lot of resources which we can put to use, but we never do.

I have decided to examine each gadget, software, and any other resource I have and really ponder, as to, how I can utilize it to its fullest potential.

It is one thing to possess a resource, but totally another thing to utilize them to its fullest potential. Recently my daugther searched in her college library for hours for a Corporate Strategy book which we already had at home.

The decision to explore a resource, we possess fully and to utilize it to its fullest potential, in our defined context, can make a world of difference to our quality of life.

What about you? How well are you utilizing your resources?