THE ART OF LIVING
Three varieties of education are : knowing, learning and realizing. In school: knowing, in college: learning, and in research: realizing.
The Chinese saint Confucius says - "Man should not only wander in search of knowledge, but should try to utilise the same in life."
Mahatma Gandhi has written - "Whatever portion of knowledge, filled in the minds of men, is utilised has its value; the rest is nothing but useless burden.”
Manu Maharaj writes in his famous book Manu-Smriti:The more persistently, perseveringly and regularly a person studies a subject, the more he will be ale to understand its basic concepts, and that which appeared to be tough to follow in the beginning will become quite interesting. Some Hindi poet has also written:
With constant practice, even a dull-witted person becomes an expert. Practice makes a man perfect. Hence if a student works hard and continues to do so regularly without break, he is bound to succeed in his mission. There can be no two opinions on this point. If you learn the hard way and overcome the difficulties with courage, you will relish your work all the more and are not likely to forget easily what you have learnt.
The surest way to succeed is to determine not to fail.
There are other factors way to succeed is to determine not to fail.
Success will remain a stranger to you if you play host to worries. You will never be able to concentrate on the job in hand. Worry will consume a lot of energy. You will give only crumbs of your energy to your main task - of achieving success in life.
Do away with the habit of 'thinking' too much or brooding. Make up your mind and then act. Action is the greatest antidote to worry, which is nothing but a sort of pessimistic inaction.
Learn to control your thoughts. Never lose sight of the vital fact that worse seldom comes to worst. If you adopt these as your mottos, you will have taken a significant step towards success.
Improve the quality of your work. The secret of success lies in first-rate performance. Slipshod and slovenly work brings failure.
The way you perform your job reveals the inner man in you.
Great men of the world who have achieved pinnacles of success were not freaks of nature. Success did not fall into their lap for heavens. They sweated for it.
Tolstoy's name is often mentioned as a great writer. But few know that he wrote his manuscripts six times before sending them to the publisher. Samual Johnson was willing to turn over half a library in search of a single word. Nietzsche sometimes wrote his text fifteen times. Spencer remodeled his System of Philosophy five times. Little wonder they enjoyed success which all envy but few achieve. Hard work is the price of success.
Bear in mind two basic points which cover most others: never speak ill of another if you can do without it. Always be generous in praise.
If you have the habit of backbiting, try to curtail it by reminding yourself, "How shall I feel if someone were to speak of me like this?" If you have to criticize, use fine, cautious words. You have to criticize, not damage the reputation of the person. Be discreet and employ restraint.
Simple virtues of tenacity willingness, readiness, alertness, courtesy and hard work will carry you further than mere smartness.
A successful business man was asked by a group of students the secret of his success.
"I jump at opportunity."
"And how do you know of opportunity?"
"I keep jumping."
There is no such thing in life as standing still. We are on the way up or the way down. We all possess a spark which can life us on to achievement, but this spark must be nourished into a flame by resolution to achieve your goal.
A lazy boy did not discover
A lazy person did not learn how to control waters.
A lazy person does not reach the moon as they are attempting now.
Success is a matter of talent and opportunity but, much more, of concentration and perseverance.
When you have set the real goal before you, next step is to make adequate preparations for its achievements. Until and unless you acquire the necessary education, training or experience to give you the know-how you cannot achieve your goal. One who wants to be a doctor has to undergo training in a medical college, and one who wants to become an advocate has to study law.
Education does not mean simply book learning but also the development of personality, leadership, sociability and a sensitivity to discriminate between the true and false values of life and the ability to imbibe those which lead to harmony and happiness.
Not only an all-out effort is necessary for success, it is also vital that you should be able to maintain the tempo, keep the drive intact till the goal is achieved.
There is the story of the gold prospector who bought a promising piece of rocky land and continuously for five years he mined the land. Everyday he would go down to deepen the tunnel he had made. But there was no sign of gold in sight. One day his patience gave in; his desire for gold became dead. He threw away his mining tools and sold his land to another prospector for a song. The new prospector enlarged the mine only a few inches more and there he found a large seam of gold running through the rock!
Had the first prospector persevered a little more, held on for a few inches more he would have surely found what he was after. "The majority of people is ready to throw their aims and purposes over-board and give up at the first sign of opposition or misfortune. A few carry on despite all opposition, until they attain their goal," says Napoleon Hill.
Thus for success it is not enough that you should have drive and stamina but persistence too. Persistence is the main force which sustains your drive and makes you go on working for your goal through thick and thin. The quality of persistence "is to the character of man what carbon is to steel.'
In this world, everything perishes and will perish, but, ideas, ideals and dreams do not.
From the point of view of civilization, we must be polite and humble as well as tolerant about other peoples' views and opinions. We should not forget the fact that if you care for others, they are likely to care for you. But if we become indifferent towards others' interests, how can you expect that others will look after your interests. Love begets love and hatred begets hatred. Selfless service is the best means of your love to the people and certainly it is bound to be responded. Having recognized the good qualities in others, you must appreciate it from heart and soul. But never try to flatter, as such a measure will soon be known and your respect is bound to diminish accordingly. One important point is that we may as far as possible try not to indulge in arguments, as such invites bad feeling, though you may be able to defeat the other party because of your strong points, but you are likely to get an adversary or even an enemy only by your behaviour. How can you win friends by hurting the feeling of others? It is only your politeness and humility that may be able to earn your friendship of most of the people.
In case of any error or mistake on our part, we must readily agree and seek others forgiveness, instead of being adamant. Because such a course will earn you respect and reverence - this is a fact which we must realise and always act in a friendly manner. You have to attract and remember one drop of honey attracts more files than a bottle of oil. When you feel that somehow antagonistic feelings are being aroused, it is much better to withdraw with apology if the circumstances demand.
Always try to place yourself in your opponent's shoes and then think as to what you would have done in similar circumstances. Even if you consider that you would not have acted the way he did, you should forgive him in your own generosity and continue your friendship or at least ordinary relations. In case you want to be sweet. You must learn to forgive and forget. Worries and fears of any kind are the most evil enemies of self-confidence. These have to be won over not only for the betterment of your individual success.
During the Second World War when Hitler had let loose all the destruction and fury over England, the Prime Minister, Mr.Winston Churchill, was surrounded from all sides with problems, he had to work eighteen hours day underground, he was asked by someone as to how he was able to discharge his immense responsibilities that must have kept him worried, Churchill's reply was - "I have very little time already; where is the time for worries?" Hence the simple rule is that we must always keep our mind busy on good and constructive ideas, ever thinking of today. Nanak says - Remain small like the tiny grass; all great ones have fallen, but the small grass remains happily when a storm rages on the earth. Even remain polite and you will be loved and respected. Besides that which cannot be cured, must be endured happily with cheer. Compromise with what is true and bow down like the tiny grass, otherwise if you show erectness like a tree when the wind blows with fury, you are going to break down.
Intelligence is the computational part of the ability to achieve goals in the world. Varying kinds and degrees of intelligence occur in people. Successfully intelligent people discern their strengths and weaknesses, and then figure out how to capitalize on their strengths, and to compensate for or remediate their weaknesses. Successfully intelligent individuals succeed in part because they achieve a functional balance among a "triarchy" of abilities:
· Analytical Abilities, which are used to analyze, evaluate, judge, compare and contrast;
· Creative Abilities, which are used to create, invent, discover, imagine;
What do you think about happiness? A philosophical approach to life; an intellectual activity or an academical pursuit. No, not at all, nothing of the sort.
Happy living is nothing more than living a normal life free from undue pressures, problems and tensions. The Art of Happy Living is not a complicated kind of art difficult to learn rather a simple art of living well, eating well, thinking well and feeling well. Just tune up your mind to enjoy every moment of life and let the happiness follow you.
Happiness is purely an internal matter. It has nothing to do with your external circumstances. Most people do the fatal mistake of looking outwards for happiness rather than looking inwards. Only fools worry about the circumstances on which they have no control. Why worry if you cannot change the weather, rather enjoy it whether its hot, humid, cold, cloudy, foggy or snowy. Keep your internal weather pleasant all the time. Don’t allow external matters to take your smiles away.
The feeling of happiness is within you. There is something positive within you which keeps you happy and there is something negative within you which keeps you unhappy. That something needs to be looked into thoroughly. If you want to live a happy life then get rid of the negative thinking which makes you unhappy. Negative approach always complicates the problems and increases unhappiness.
Happy living is the reward of positive thinking. Remember, only the positive thinking can bring happiness in your life. If you cannot think positively, you cannot live happily. Be your own coach and adviser. Look everything with a positive angle. Find something good even in most critical moments of your life. Make positive thinking the basis of your happy living.
Happiness is all around. It’s not far away from you. If you do not want to live happy, its upto you. It’s your own choice. Don’t blame others. Don’t blame your fate or external circumstances.
How to Stop Worrying and Start Living
Fundamental facts you should know about worry
1. If you want to avoid worry, do what Sir William Osler did: Live in "day-tight compartments." Don't stew about the futures. Just live each day until bedtime.
2. The next time Trouble--with a Capital T--backs you up in a corner, try the magic formula of Willis H. Carrier:
a. Ask yourself, "What is the worst that can possibly happen if I can't solve my problem?
b. Prepare yourself mentally to accept the worst--if necessary.
c. Then calmly try to improve upon the worst--which you have already mentally agreed to accept.
3. Remind yourself of the exorbitant price you can pay for worry in terms of your health. "Those who do not know how to fight worry die young."
Basic techniques in analyzing worry
1. Get the facts. Remember that Dean Hawkes of Columbia University said that "half the worry in the world is caused by people trying to make decisions before they have sufficient knowledge on which to base a decision."
2. After carefully weighing all the facts, come to a decision.
3. Once a decision is carefully reached, act! Get busy carrying out your decision--and dismiss all anxiety about the outcome.
4. When you, or any of your associates, are tempted to worry about a problem, write out and answer the following questions:
a. What is the problem?
b. What is the cause of the problem?
c. What are all possible solutions?
d. What is the best solution?
How to break the worry habit before it breaks you
1. Crowd worry out of your mind by keeping busy. Plenty of action is one of the best therapies ever devised for curing "wibber gibbers."
2. Don't fuss about trifles. Don't permit little things--the mere termites of life--to ruin your happiness.
3. Use the law of averages to outlaw your worries. Ask yourself: "What are the odds against this thing's happening at all?"
4. Co-operate with the inevitable. If you know a circumstance is beyond your power to change or revise, say to yourself: "It is so; it cannot be otherwise."
5. Put a "stop-less" order on your worries. Decide just how much anxiety a thing may be worth--and refuse to give it anymore.
6. Let the past bury its dead. Don't saw sawdust.
Seven ways to cultivate a mental attitude that will bring you peace and happiness
1. Let's fill our minds with thoughts of peace, courage, health, and hope, for "our life is what our thoughts make it."
2. Let's never try to get even with our enemies, because if we do we will hurt ourselves far more than we hurt them. Let's do as General Eisenhower does: let's never waste a minute thinking about people we don't like.
A. Instead of worrying about ingratitude, let's expect it. Let's remember that Jesus healed ten lepers in one day--and only one thanked Him. Why should we expect more gratitude than Jesus got?
B. Let's remember that the only way to find happiness is not to expect gratitude--but to give for the joy of giving.
C. Let's remember that gratitude is a "cultivated" trait; so if we want our children to be grateful, we must train them to be grateful.
3. Count your blessings--not your troubles!
4. Let's not imitate others. Let's find ourselves and be ourselves, for "envy is ignorance" and "imitation is suicide."
5. When fate hands us a lemon, let's try to make a lemonade.
6. Let's forget our own unhappiness--by trying to create a little happiness for others. "When you are good to others, you are best to yourself."
The perfect way to conquer worry
How to keep from worrying about criticism
1. Unjust criticism is often a disguised compliment. It often means that you have aroused jealousy and envy. Remember that no one ever kicks a dead dog.
2. Do the very best you can; and then put up your old umbrella and keep the rain of criticism from running down the back of your neck.
3. Let's keep a record of the fool things we have done and criticize ourselves. Since we can't hope to be perfect, let's do what E.H. Little did: let's ask for unbiased, helpful, constructive criticism.
Six ways to prevent fatigue and worry and keep your energy and spirits high
1. Rest before you get tired.
2. Learn to relax at your work.
3. Learn to relax at home.
4. Apply these four good workings habits:
a. Clear your desk of all papers except those relating to the immediate problem at hand.
b. Do things in the order of their importance.
c. When you face a problem, solve it then and there if you have the facts to make a decision.
d. Learn to organize, deputize, and supervise.
5. To prevent worry and fatigue, put enthusiasm into your work.
6. Remember, no one was ever killed by lack of sleep. It is worrying about insomnia that does the damage--not the insomnia.
1. Identify and live by your
When we know what our values are, and our goals and actions are in harmony with our values, we are seldom stressed or in conflict about what we are doing.
2. Complete the Past
Sometimes we hang on to voices or perceived injustices from the past, long after the person or situation is dead and gone. By bringing closure to these events, we are free to move forward.
3. Plan for the Future.
It is important to know where we want to go and to have a rough idea of how we plan to get there. While it is important to give up final control to God or the Universe, we need a sense of focus and direction to our lives. Planning for the future gives us that sense of direction.
4. Live in the Present.
This is key. Once we have completed the past and planned for the future, we need to stay focused in the here and now. There is very little that we cannot handle in the moment. (A clue: if you are feeling guilt, you are in the past. If you are feeling fear, you are in the future. The absence of those feelings generally means you are planted firmly in the present!) .
5. Understand that if you can dream it, you can
If we are -- truly -- not capable of something, then it is practically impossible for us to dream about it. Knowledge of what we are capable of is in each and every cell of our being. So no matter how wild and far-fetched your dream appears, the very existence of the dream means that you can achieve it if you are willing to commit to it.
6. Allow others to live their own lives.
Allowing others to be themselves and to live their own lives is the first step in being able to be yourself and living your own life. If you have any 'shoulds' or expectations of others, let them go. Shoulds kill relationships faster than any weapon I know of and fill our lives with unnecessary stress.
7. Recognize God in everyone.
Everyone (literally, everyone!) is a reflection of God. Sometimes we have to dig a little deep to see it as our perceptions, expectations and fears cloud our vision. But when we can recognize how God is mirrored in each person, our lives are calmer and freer!
8. Create reserves where you need them.
Stress is often created through lack, either right now or right around the corner. Create reserves of time, space, money, love, vitality and meaningful action, starting where you feel most stressed.
9. Focus on being and not doing or having.
When we are focused on who we are, what kind of person we are, we tend to be on a journey of spiritual evolution, which in itself tends to have less stress (or the stress is less stressful!). When we are focused on doing or having, we are not focused on our higher selves, but only on certain dimensions of who we are (and usually on what we think that means). Be a being, not a doing!
When you have a confidence crisis, don't despair, don't reach for the bottle of bourbon or the bon bons. Instead, start to use some of these confidence-boosting techniques. Begin with at least two, then add a third and a fourth. You will gain a lot more than confidence - you will learn to love, honor and appreciate yourself more and more.
Keep a Journal
Keeping a journal is a great way to process, and clarify your feelings. Forcing yourself to write everyday also forces you to take time for daily reflection. Daily reflection can help you solidify what you know, what you have learned, and what you still need to pay attention to.
Practice gratitude - be thankful for what you already have and put your attention on all the blessings you already possess. Keep a gratitude section in your journal. Everyday write down five things you are thankful for. This will help you feel richer and stronger in character and that translates into confidence.
Evaluate Your Relationships
Assess the relationships in your life. Do they support you or sabotage you? All relationships change with time; some get better, some get worse. If you have relationships in your life that are more of a burden then a joy, it may be time to sever your ties - or at least loosen the reins.
Start New Relationships
Identify people that have the qualities you admire - people you feel you could learn from and who could learn from you, as well. Look for people you can have fun with. Boosting your confidence can be really fun, if you want it to be.
Get into a Good Group
This may be time for a traditional support group. Chatting over a cup of carrot juice with your pals might be a remedy. Organize your own group of confidence boosters and support each other in making changes.
Change Your Behavior
What do you do that boosts your confidence and what do you do that brings it down. Exercise, getting enough sleep, speaking your mind and dressing well are behaviors that tend to boost confidence. Staying up late, spending all your time with Ben and Jerry, and saying "yes" too often to avoid confrontation when you really want to say "no" will bring your confidence down.
When we withhold communication because we are afraid of how we will be received, we chip away another bit of our confidence. Share your thoughts, opinions, and preferences. Speak up in all situations. The insignificant situations will be practice for the important occasions that are sure to follow.
Take a Risk A Day
A risk is something you would do in an instant if you knew you would be successful. It is the fact that you do not know how it will turn out that makes it a risk. The best way to bolster your confidence is to start doing things you are afraid to do. Make a list of risks for you and start to do them one by one.
Here are seven proven ways you can get a new handle on stress.
1. Control your REACTION with these 7 simple words.
The first step is to remain alert when people try to weigh you down with their nervous comments and attitudes.
The next step is to reply to the attempted attack: “I have nothing to say to that.” This cuts off the contagious effect of the stressful assault. It blocks the tendency to accept and imitate depressing words from others. Your nature does not fall down to the level of the anxious remark, but remains high above it.
Negative people WANT to get you involved with their defeat, and this is a major method they use to do it. Your reply: "I have nothing to say to that" prevents them from drawing you in as their victim.
Inner life author Vernon Howard writes, “An attitude of defeat in another person cannot touch you unless you carelessly accept it as yours. And there is no need at all for you to accept it. A quiet refusal to enter the battlefield is the perfect reply."
2. Let go of painful grudges by living in the present moment.
Hating someone is like drinking poison yourself and hoping the offender will die from it. We must grant to others the same opportunity for change or we shut the door on our own development. Therefore, it is our responsibility to release those who have caused harm to the providence of a higher power, while simultaneously realizing they will be held accountable for their actions.
The secret to success without stress is to realize your newness in the present moment many times each day. NOW is so alive and energetic, so tangible and real, that painful grudges cannot “live” here. Grudges can only stay around when fueled by unaware and unproductive mental visits to the past.
3. Observe negative thoughts with the aim of understanding them, instead of trying to suppress them.
Self-Observation is a master key to stress-free living. Instead of claiming stressful thoughts and feelings as our own, we can observe and understand them. This understanding sets us free!
Self-observation is practical spirituality at its best. Marcus Aurelius, the ancient Roman Emperor said, “Those who do not observe the movement of their own minds must of necessity be unhappy.” (Marcus Aurelius)
4. Pause often and enjoy a deep breath.
People are often so tense with stressful thinking they barely breathe!
We can do something highly beneficial and intelligent. We can take brief breaks many times a day, even if for only 30 seconds! We can pause, take a deep breathe, look around and relax.
Suppose you feel tempted to give in to someone when you know you should not. Instantly fall into internal relaxation. Breathe away your tensions. Your habitually anxious and resentful attitudes will fall away like leaves from a tree. They will be replaced by a clear mind that reveals what is best for you.
5. Realize you have far better things to think about!
The old way of thinking has its favorite grooves; for example, negative mental film clips that pull you away from the present moment. When you detect yourself involved in one of these internal movies, pause and say to yourself, "There are better things to think about." This instantly snaps the spell and moves you to higher ground.
You’ll feel much less stress and an abundance of new vitality as you reclaim the energy once consumed by these negative mental film clips. Suddenly wake up and come home to yourself by enthusiastically declaring, “There are better things to think about!”
6. Stay clear of negative zones of influence.
Our society is rampant with negative influences. They come from so many places, like frantic people, advertising and untruthful politics. Never forget: Unaware people want you to vibrate on their stressful level.
It is your duty, your noble mission in life, to live in harmony with your Heart -- YOUR AUTHENTIC AND INTELLIGENT SELF. Though physically you may be in a stressful place, once you connect with your Heart you have the spiritual power to stay free inwardly. No law says you must fall under stressful zones of influence.
7. Refuse to make stressful or angry comments.
Stress spills out into the world. It is like a snowball rolling down a hill that starts small then gathers size and momentum. Therefore, we must stop stress in its infancy, and the best place to do so is BEFORE it leaves the mouth.
Here’s a wonderful way to dissolve stress in your life:
This insight exercise is called SELF-SURPRISE. Here's how it works. You are about to say something angry or hurtful to another person. The statement has left the dock – it is traveling at the speed of light toward the mouth. Your AWARENESS steps in and a higher choice is made; a switch is thrown and you do not say what you were about to say. You say something helpful and cheerful instead!
You’ll instantly feel the trueness of practicing this exercise. Anger or stress did not succeed in dictating your speech. Your power of choice lifted you above its arrows. This is not the practice of phony niceness. It is the expression of true strength and authentic self-command It can only occur when your awareness is active, like the presence of a lighted lodge in the dark forest.