Living life to the fullest

LiveMy father in law was simple straight forward honest man, full of life, happy and content.  Always enthusiastic and he was the one who knew how to live life to the fullest.  For him living life to the fullest was not about partying or drinking all night rather it meant enjoying doing things what he loved and finding little things that gave him joy. Even if it was just watching television with the family or taking a walk in a park with his friends for two hours every day.  Unfortunately, due to sudden heart attack he left for his heavenly abode earlier this month, leaving all of us in a state of shock and grief.

Since the time I attended his funeral, I have been thinking about his life, and how he lived     a life of significance. I learned how by doing random acts of kindness every single day he  made big impact into lives of others. He was a forward looking person with very strong values. His positive outlook, simplicity and no whining nature taught me invaluable life lessons and challenged me to think, how to live a life of significance, helping others and what is that I must do to attain contentment and happiness.  I recall him saying that you cannot be happy if you do not appreciate the things the way they are. He was always grateful and content with what he had. No regrets whatsoever. However, that does not mean that he was not ambitious, he had a fulfilling career at Nestle in India. He took good care of his family, provided rock solid foundation, values and best possible education to his children, made sure that his own parents were well attended to in their old age.

So the question is what is it like to be someone who lives life to the fullest? Here are the five lessons that I learned from his life:-

Money can’t buy you happiness

You need to live a life with meaning, and you do not need money in order to bring that meaning. Life is truly beautiful, if you just keep money aside for one moment and focus on giving more that acquiring in your life.

Find joy in everything you do

When you are able to appreciate minor things, you can achieve greater levels of happiness and satisfaction. It is never too difficult to be thankful for a little smile, small gift, or minor compliment. Being grateful instills positive thoughts and you can have an entirely different perspective of your life only if you learn to count your blessings, notice minute joys, and acknowledge everything that you have.   

Find Good in All Circumstances:

Circumstances are neither bad nor good, it is your response to those circumstances. If you have a positive approach, you can manage to obtain some benefit even from the most terrible situations.

Train your mind that all is well

Learn to develop the right mindset, you can be happy now, without changing anything else. You don’t need to wait until you’ve changed everything and made your life perfect before you’re happy. Do not waste your time and energy complaining or criticizing other. It will lead to unwanted stress that affects your health, allow others to live their life, leave them alone. Don’t try to please everyone. Instead of criticizing person, ask yourself, what is good about this person?

Empathy is good, action is better 

Having an empathic nature, and to act upon, allows you to cultivate better relationships around us, and in the process enjoy life a bit more. Since it is a selfless act, it also has the power to transform your life as well as the life of other people around you. This simple act can change the way you think and behave, and will encourage you to step outside of your own thoughts and feelings to be able to have a larger perspective on life.

Contributed by Rakesh Malhotra, Founder of Five Global Values (www.fiveglobalvalues.com)

Be Socially Responsible to Change Your World

Compassion is one of the most important values that enable people to create a better environment.

Be Socially Responsible to Change Your World

Human morals and values serve as the driving agent in the act of giving the world a better shape. The importance of values in social responsibility or environmental sustainability cannot be undermined. Strong and deep-rooted values encourage people or organizations to come to the fore and be responsible enough to modify the world and make it a peaceful and prosperous place to live.

Compassion is one of the most important values that enable people to create a better environment. It motivates you to acknowledge others for who they are rather than focusing on minor differences. The feeling of mutual respect makes you human and distinguishes you from other species that exist on the earth. Organizations, while working on the principles of mutual respect, can formulate a newer, better, and more responsible society.

An easily ignored value that binds individuals or the entire society together is loyalty. It gives you enough strength to stand up against exploitation, injustice, and other evils present in your society. Above all, make sure to be honest to yourself. While being honest, people and organizations are able to accept their flaws, improve themselves, and consequently focus on improving their surroundings.

The most significant fact that should not be overlooked is that only a responsible citizen can create a responsible society. Execution of social responsibility is vital for every organization or individual in order to create an atmosphere which is supportive, generous, and where communal interests are preferred.

Examples of Individual Social Responsibility

Individual Social Responsibility enables an individual to introduce minor or major changes in his or her social environment. It makes a person more responsible in his or her actions that are believed to impact communities that may or may not be related to his or her immediate surroundings.

A significant contribution is made to social responsibility by the kind of choices and decisions that people make. Even their code of conduct, their way of treating others, and the products, services, and resources they prefer are related to the domain of social responsibility. Individual social responsibility is majorly about treating others in the same way as you want yourself to be treated. You are considered to be socially responsible if you consider yourself accountable for your particular actions and dealings. Your constant attempts to have a positive influence on your fellows and to improve your environment make you socially responsible as well as appreciable.

Contributed by Rakesh Malhotra, Founder of Five Global Values (www.fiveglobalvalues.com) and Author of “Adventures of Tornado Kid, Whirling Back Home Towards Timeless Values” .Passionately determined to uncover the mystery of human behavior. His fascination with the influence of core values on human behavior stems from a career which has seen rise from an entry-level sales job to that of a seasoned CEO. Having worked, lived, or traveled to more than 40 countries, he has been able to study performance and human behavior across all cultures.

 

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“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” – Mother Teresa

 

A nation's culture resides in the hearts and in the soul of its people.

A nation’s culture resides in the hearts and in the soul of its people.

Peace signs and peace demonstrations. Peace in the heart, peace in the home. Peace of mind and peace of spirit. Peace, a state of harmony and calm that is characterized by a lack of violence, can be found in many shapes and forms.  The English word was derived more than 700 years ago from the Hebrew word “shalom,” which means safety, prosperity and friendship. Since that time, the word “peace” has been used to connote lack of war, goodwill among others and a calm internal state, among others.

Peace is a universal value, which, like love, compassion, integrity, respect and responsibility, can be found on every continent, every country, every state, city, town and neighborhood. Peace is diverse and knows no nationality, geography, culture or race. As a general rule, the more widespread peace is, the more unity, happiness and accord will exist among tribes, cultures, governments, families and friends.

Inner peace is a particularly prized state, since someone who experiences inner peace is better prepared to deal with personal and global challenges and discord, can enjoy true happiness regardless of what is going on around him or her, and experiences a genuine state of calm, joy and understanding.

In addition, there are a variety of peace prizes awarded to leaders in the peace community. The most remarkable of these are the Nobel Peace Prize, given annually by the Nobel committee to a person or persons who actively work for peace, and the International Gandhi Peace Prize, which was named after Mahatma Gandhi, the former leader of India, and is awarded to people and institutions that contribute to political, social and economic peace through their non-violent methods. Notably, these distinguished awards can be earned by anyone, regardless of race, creed, sex, age or nationality.

Likewise, the United States Institute of Peace is an independent, nonpartisan conflict management group created by Congress “to prevent and mitigate international conflict without resorting to violence.” The center works to save lives and increase the government’s ability to manage conflicts. Peace is a powerful concept that pervades government institutions all the way down to individual lives.

In addition, the idea of peace has spread to schools (Peace College in Raleigh, North Carolina), institutions (the Peace Corps), drinks (Peace Coffee), songs (“Imagine” by John Lennon) and more. There are even Twitter and Facebook groups dedicated exclusively to peace. While peace protestors wearing tie-dye t-shirts and waving peace signs were more prominent in the 1960s, symbols of peace continue to proliferate today, in homage to the idea that peace is important, no matter what the year, location or world circumstances.

Parents, caregivers, leaders and individuals who are seeking to create more peace can start with the concept of inner peace.

Ask yourself: How can I create more peace in my life? Where can I be more peaceful and less angry? How can I show others that I am committed to peace? What do I need to let go of or invite into my life? Examining your own life history is a great place to start identifying and spreading peace.

Then, you can share written and verbal stories and songs with children that espouse peace over violence, discuss current world events (both peaceful and violent ones) and their impact on others, and remind your children and family members of the value of peace in the world. When you see acts of  anger or violence, be willing to point them out and discuss them. Likewise, when you see acts of peace, be willing to celebrate them.

Further, you can get involved in peaceful activities in your community, whether it is a march for peace or a peaceful cause, a meditation group focused on cultivating inner peace or a nonprofit organization that helps victims of violence get back on their feet. There are a variety of small and large actions you can take to make your household, neighborhood, community and world at large a more peaceful place.

Unfortunately, acts of violence among children – shootings at Columbine High School in Colorado and Virginia Tech University, among others, as well as the fact that more than 13 million school kids will be bullied this year – sometimes seem to be more prominent than acts of peace. While these horrific incidents serve to spread an environment of mistrust, hatred and confusion, peace, love, compassion, integrity, respect and responsibility can counteract the weight of anger in the world. Applying a peaceful attitude and peaceful actions when dealing with children can help to foster more love and less hate in the world.

At first blush, peace might seem like more of an abstract concept than a tangible goal, but true peace, the kind that starts within, can spread like wildfire, changing ideas, lives and communities in the process.

Peaceful thoughts lead to peaceful words, which lead to peaceful actions. When you find peace in your mind, it’s easier to speak and communicate with peaceful intentions, leading to more peaceful interactions in your life.

Contributed by  Rakesh Malhotra, Founder of Five Global Values (www.fiveglobalvalues.com) and Author of “Adventures of Tornado Kid, Whirling Back Home towards Timeless Values”.  Passionately determined to uncover the mystery of human behavior, his fascination with the influence of core values on human behavior stems from a career which has seen rise from an entry-level sales job to that of a seasoned CEO. Having worked, lived, or traveled to more than 40 countries, he has been able to study performance and human behavior across all cultures.

 

 

 

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Formula for Success: Keep an Attitude of Gratitude

Staying Positive

Keep an attitude of gratitude; picture courtesy Joseph Clough website.

An attitude of gratitude is one of the most influential contributors to staying positive in life. It is the most powerful way to enhance success and happiness. Appreciating someone or something for positive qualities can have a tremendous impact on your daily life. By showing gratitude, you embrace positive elements of determination, enthusiasm, energy, and attentiveness.

Gratitude can help in developing your sense of self-respect and self-esteem. It motivates you to appreciate all the amazing facets of life and create a steady balance of peace, harmony, and happiness. Difficulties present opportunities to grow and develop as a person. You have potential to convert adversities to blessings by adopting a thankful behavior. Gratitude maintains and strengthens your relationship with God and other fellow beings.

Express your Gratitude

Some people are inherently more positive, hopeful, and optimistic than others. Even the most cynical and pessimistic people can develop a positive and satisfied attitude with constant practice. If you feel that someone has done something nice for you, you should never hesitate to instantly thank him/her. When you show the attitude of gratitude, you actually share your joy with people around you. It does not only make you feel good, but also gives a certain level of confidence to others.

Do not Take Things for Granted: You easily ignore a majority of positive things in your life only because you are used to them. You are able to realize their significance only when you lose them. Do not falter to appreciate something before it is too late.

Small Things Matter: Developing the attitude of gratitude requires you to observe little things. When you are able to appreciate minor blessings, you can achieve great levels of happiness and satisfaction. It is never too difficult to be thankful for a little smile, small gift, or minor compliment.

Find Good in All Circumstances: Circumstances are neither bad nor good. It is your response to those circumstances that determine their good or bad nature. If you have a positive approach, you can manage to obtain some benefit even from the most terrible situations.

Make Careful Comparisons: It is quite natural to compare yourself with others. While you compare yourself with those who are more affluent, you should also remember the people who are not as fortunate as you. You should make appropriate and encouraging comparisons as sentiments of jealousy can affect your contentment and self-esteem.

Life is already full of anxieties, tensions, and problems. A simple act of considering positive aspects of life can make a huge difference. You can have an entirely different perspective of your life only if you learn to count your blessings, notice minute joys, and acknowledge everything that you have. If you have an attitude of gratitude, you can treasure your life, family, profession, and relations.

Contributed by Rakesh Malhotra, Founder of Five Global Values (www.fiveglobalvalues.com) and Author of “Adventures of Tornado Kid, Whirling Back Home Towards Timeless Values” .Passionately determined to uncover the mystery of human behavior. His fascination with the influence of core values on human behavior stems from a career which has seen rise from an entry-level sales job to that of a seasoned CEO. Having worked, lived, or traveled to more than 40 countries, he has been able to study performance and human behavior across all cultures.

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Thanksgiving should be a daily affair -Gratitude must be part of your Attitude

Thanksgiving should be a daily affair

As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them – John F. Kennedy, 35th President of the United States.

Appreciating someone or feeling grateful to others can significantly improve your happiness in your daily life and transform your emotional outlook.  By showing gratitude, you embrace positive elements of determination, enthusiasm, energy, and attentiveness. An attitude of gratitude is one of the important contributors to a contented life and most powerful way to enhance satisfaction and inner happiness.

Be Gracious and Thankful

It is quite natural to be accepted and appreciated. Saying a little “thank you” to the people around you can give them an impression of recognition and acknowledgment. It makes them feel proud of their efforts. Attitude of gratitude is mostly about your ability to notice positive traits in others. You can build determination in others, improve their efficiency, encourage innovation, and promote positive relationships by emphasizing feelings of gratitude.

Gratitude can help in developing your sense of self-respect and self-esteem. It motivates you to appreciate all the amazing facets of life and create a steady balance of peace, harmony, and happiness. Adverse situations and difficulties in life present opportunities to grow and develop you as a strong person. You have immense potential to convert adversities to blessings by adopting a positive attitude and thankful behavior.  Gratitude maintains and strengthens your relationship with God and other fellow beings.

Appreciate what you have and Celebrate Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is an occasion when everyone gathers with their family, relatives, and friends to celebrate with joy and express their appreciation and thankfulness. It brings people together, close to each other, and creates strong bonds among them.

Much like any other festival, Thanksgiving also has a related history. It is celebrated to appreciate all that you have. However, it appears as if the only purpose of Thanksgiving is to eat turkey, avail bargains for Christmas shopping, and relax. Thanksgiving has much more to offer. When celebrating Thanksgiving, you should adopt an attitude of gratitude for every little blessing that you usually take for granted. It is an opportunity to appreciate your family, personal life, work, health, and other relations. This festival provides you a chance to acquire a contented and gratifying lifestyle.

In today’s world, pessimism overpowers optimism. Amidst the celebrations of festivals, you forget all your tensions and worries. Festivals give you a break from your pessimistic feelings and create an emotional balance. In order to enjoy a contented and satisfied life, you should visualize every single day as a festival. Do not wait for Thanksgiving to appreciate your blessings and people around you.

Express your Gratitude and be Grateful

Some people are inherently more positive, hopeful, and optimistic than others. Even the most cynical and pessimistic people can develop a positive and satisfied attitude with constant practice. If you feel that someone has done something nice for you, you should never hesitate to instantly thank him/her. When you show the attitude of gratitude, you actually share your joy with people around you. It does not only make you feel good, but also gives a certain level of confidence to others.

Make gratitude as part of your attitude: Developing the attitude of gratitude requires you to observe little things. When you are able to appreciate minor blessings, you can achieve great levels of happiness and satisfaction. It is never too difficult to be thankful for a little smile, small gift, or minor compliment.

Always say Thank you, it Matters: You easily ignore a majority of positive things in your life only because you are used to them. You are able to realize their significance only when you lose them. Do not falter to appreciate something before it is too late.

Count your blessings: A simple act of considering positive aspects of life can make a huge difference. For example, you are blessed with human life and grateful for waking up every morning, having caring spouse, wonderful parents, adorable kids, and have shelter to live comfortably etc. If you start counting things that you are grateful, you will be amazed to learn that it is very big. You easily ignore a majority of positive things in your life only because you are used to them. You are able to realize their significance only when you lose them. Do not falter to appreciate something before it is too late.  Being grateful instills positive thoughts in the mind and you can have an entirely different perspective of your life only if you learn to count your blessings, notice minute joys, and acknowledge everything that you have.  If you have an attitude of gratitude, you can treasure your life, family, profession, and relations. Don’t compare yourself with others instead content with what you have got and thankful to God. Comparing yourself with others can affect your contentment and self-esteem.

Wishing you all a blessed Thanksgiving.

About the Author

Rakesh is Founder of Five Global Values www.fiveglobalvalues.com). Passionately determined to uncover the mystery of human behavior, Rakesh has created a peaceful world full of love and happiness through his work.
In his book “Adventures of the Tornado Kid”, Rakesh utilized his experiences and vast research on human behavior and values to create an intimate observation of the lives of two children with opposing upbringings. He shares crucial techniques to help all of us impart basic human values among today’s youth.

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Adventure of the Tornado Kid – Whirling Back Home toward Timeless Values

Adventures of the Tornado Kid is a beautiful and compelling story

I’m very excited to share that Adventures of Tornado Kid is finally out!  The book comes with a Free Parent Guide by Planet Fassa and Five Global Values.  If you want to purchase this book, please visit Amazon.

Adventures of the Tornado Kid is a beautiful and compelling story about two young kids born into two families with very different values. A devastating tornado is the catalyst for the children’s journey to discovering five of the most powerful values in the world: Responsibility, Compassion, Integrity, Peace, and Love. These global values are applicable and universally acceptable in every society, religion, cast, community, and for any age or race.
Every day, every single one of us is guided by our values and beliefs. Adventures of the Tornado Kid teaches kids not just what these Five Values are, but how to live them every day. In addition, kids will learn how to improve the quality of their lives by applying these Five Success Principals: Passion, Vision, Perseverance, Courage, and Discipline. This story explores the vital roles these values play in helping us to raise strong, energetic, and determined individuals – individuals who are capable of controlling their emotions and achieving success in all facets of life including, education, career, and relationships. Learning the Five Global Values can help shape lives and achieve success. This book will inspire kids to connect with one another, connect families together, give teachers good material to share with their students, and provide hope for communities wanting to help families in need.

BONUS! The book comes with a Free Parent Guide, by Planet Fassa and Five Values, designed to help kids put into action the values learned throughout the book. Using the Parent Guide along with the book will deepen the reader’s ability to absorb the timeless values within Adventures of the Tornado Kid and will show the reader how to develop and harness positive attitude, sharing, contentment, humility and honesty.

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The Purpose of Life is to Help Others

If you want to be happy, practice compassion

“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.” - Dalai Lama

 

Derived from the Latin, compassion technically means “to suffer with,” but compassion goes far beyond suffering. Combining empathy, sympathy, care and concern, compassion involves feeling for another person and a willingness to express or share that virtue. Compassion involves looking beyond one’s own life and plight and seeing into another’s eyes, circumstances and soul. In other words, compassion is caring put into action.

Compassion in action can be as simple as standing up to let someone else have your seat on the bus or allowing another car into your lane in traffic. It can be donating holiday gifts to a local family in need, writing a hand-written letter or card to let someone know that you’re thinking of them, or talking to a friend about a struggle that he or she is having. Compassion can be a word, a hand, a look, a thought or a notion.

Compassion knows no gender, no age, no nationality, no culture, no race and no religion. It is a universal value. Likewise, compassion is integral to the global values of love, peace, integrity, respect and responsibility, all human values that provide evidence of caring, of noticing, of a willingness to reach out and make a difference, regardless of any perceived differences.

Further, compassion offers both short- and long-term benefits; scientific studies have shown that compassionate people produce more of a hormone that can slow down the aging process and less of a stress hormone that can speed the process up. Likewise, compassion can engender more appreciation, happiness and better relationships. If you are a parent or caregiver, a leader in your community or simply a concerned citizen or friend, you can make yourself a paragon of compassion.

Following are five helpful ideas for sharing and showing compassion in your community:

1)    Make compassion a part of every single day. When you wake up each morning, simply hold the word or the idea of compassion in your mind for a few minutes, determining how you can offer a little more compassion during that particular day.

2)    Focus on what you have in common with others, rather than your differences. Teach your children to do the same through discussion and modeling. Most suffering occurs when we believe that we’re separate, rather than connected. Recognize that others are going through the same things you are – maybe not at the same time or in the same way, but everyone wants to feel safe, happy, secure and loved.

3)    Practice random acts of kindness. Pay for a stranger’s coffee, leave a thoughtful, anonymous note for someone who could use a boost, smile more, say “thank you” a lot. Small acts of kindness and compassion can add up to a pretty big deal.

4)    Practice loving-kindness meditation. Set aside five minutes to find a comfortable, quiet space, close your eyes and sit up tall. Repeat the following phrases silently to yourself: May I be safe. May I be healthy. May I be happy. May I live with ease. (You can substitute other statements that resonate more with you, if you prefer.) After three to five rounds, move on to someone you care about, envision that person in your mind’s eye, and repeat the same statements silently to them: May you be safe. May you be healthy. May you be happy. May you live with ease. Then, do the same thing, without judgment, for someone who you struggle with. Lastly, send these thoughts of loving-kindness out on a global level. Notice a warm glow from within as you finish and sit silently for a few moments.

5)    While compassion in action is particularly powerful, don’t be afraid to talk about it and define it with your kids. Let them know that compassion is important.

In a recent study at Harvard Business School, social researcher Michael Norton gave undergraduates money to spend on themselves or on others. Interestingly, the ones who spent money on others – who gave money away – were happier than those who kept the money for themselves. Likewise, those who reported giving money to charity were happier than those who didn’t. The website DonorChoose.org helps people benefit others, and, in turn, themselves. Money can buy happiness – when you spend it on someone else. Indeed, compassion in action can have incredibly powerful internal and external applications and effects. Give, care, contribute – you’ll make your world better and contribute to more global happiness.

 

 

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