Here’s what my doctor told me about flu vaccines

Parenting always comes with a major responsibility of keeping children safe. As a parent we are not only responsible for bringing them up as good human beings but also responsible for raising a healthy child. This cannot be seen as duty, rather it comes out of parental love and impulse to keep the kids safe from physical harm and diseases.

In the growing years, it is necessary to keep an eye on the child’s growth. Also important is strong immunity. That’s why doctors ask about any kind of symptoms and other health conditions during regular visits.

Immunity in children is another area of concern. Children easily contract infections from elders and can pass on the infection to senior citizens. Since we are already battling a pandemic for which we have the vaccination drive ongoing, here’s what my doctor told me about flu vaccines.

Influenza can lead to dangerous complications and children in the age group of 6 months to 8 years are especially vulnerable. The elderly too are at a risk. Keeping them all safe is a priority and the best way to be protected is to get the flu shot.

The flu has symptoms similar to common cold. Battling flu along with covid-19 is a disastrous situation, which is why the doctors, on flu vaccines in India stress that the flu shot should be taken during the monsoons as India falls in the SH region.

When the pandemic hit us, it took some time before a vaccine was available. However, that is not the case with flu since we already have the vaccine handy. It is just that people need to be made aware of the importance of administering the shots, as well as educated about the right vaccine and the time when they should take it. The flu shot is crucial for 360° protection.

Best time to get your flu shot

The WHO has recommended that the Southern Hemisphere (SH) vaccine is the ideal vaccine for India. Influenza vaccination is most effective when local circulating viruses are well-matched with vaccine antigens for SH. Since the peak season of flu in the larger part of the country starts between mid-summer to monsoons, now is the right time to vaccinate against flu for effective protection.

Flu vaccine should be taken annually. However, getting vaccinated early for subsequent seasons is likely to be associated with reduced protection against flu infection later in the flu season, particularly among older adults says CDC. Protection fades over time, so not getting vaccinated with the vaccine containing the right seasonal strains may leave one more vulnerable. Vaccination can be done throughout the SH flu season, into September or later.

We did see a lot of pediatric cases during the second wave of covid-19, so it is much needed for us as parents to keep ourselves updated on the vaccine schedules for the kids. For diseases like influenza, it is very much a necessity that the entire family is vaccinated. The responsibility lies with us parents to make all the members of the family aware of the consequences and therefore as a proactive measure it is a must to take the flu shot.

Do remember if the adults in the family have recently taken the covid vaccine, there can be a gap of 14 days before they take the flu shot.

Though maintaining good hygiene is a great way to keep away from flu, getting vaccinated gives you an upper hand to prevent getting infected.

CDC recommends getting the flu vaccine, which will help in reducing the additional burden to the healthcare services who strive to keep our population safe.

AS per CDC, below are the benefits of the flu vaccine:

  • Flu vaccination helps you to keep away from becoming sick due to flu.
  • Flu-associated hospitalization is greatly reduced for kids and adults when the flu vaccine is administered.
  • The flu vaccination could be an important preventive tool for adults with chronic illnesses.
  • Women during and after pregnancy are protected if the flu vaccine is taken.
  • Reduction in severity of illnesses is proved by various studies wherein people who got infected in spite of taking the flu vaccine.
  • When you get vaccinated you are not only protecting yourself but also people around you.

Let us not skip or postpone vaccinations just because we are all grounded in our homes. Talk to your doctor, get the flu shot and stay healthy!

We must #PreventWhatCanBePrevented because flu is preventable with vaccination.

References

https://www.cdc.gov/flu/prevent/vaccine-benefits.htm
https://www.who.int/news-room/spotlight/influenza-are-we-ready/5-myths-about-the-flu-vaccine
https://www.hindustantimes.com/brand-stories/three-steps-to-fight-flu-this-monsoon-101631877277522.html
https://www.hindustantimes.com/brand-stories/have-you-got-your-flu-shot-find-out-the-right-time-for-india-101632831201860.html
https://www.hindustantimes.com/brand-post/how-to-safeguard-your-family-from-seasonal-infections-in-the-pandemic-101626856896522.html

Beginners guide to niacinamide #MyFriendAlexa

Lately, you could see the whole skincare world talking a lot about active ingredients. The most commonly talked about is Niacinamide.



Niacinamide also known as nicotinamide is a form of vitamin B3. An essential nutrient whose deficiency could lead to disorders of skin,kidney and brain. Taking niacinamide can prevent the deficiency.


The ingredient has much more to offer when it is used in the general skin department. Applying niacinamide topically is proven to help in treating skin conditions like eczema and acne.



Benefits of niacinamide


Niacinamide is mainly recommended for people who have puffy skin and rosacea. The anti-inflammatory properties aid in reducing the redness.
Skin immunity can be boosted as niacinamide helps in building keratin, the protein that keeps skin firm and healthy.

The lipid barrier that niacinamide helps in building aids in retaining moisture of the skin. This is much beneficial for people who have eczema or mature skin.

When you skin is smooth and moisturized due to topical application of niacinamide it helps in minimizing the pores.

Retention of moisture isn’t beneficial only when the skin is dry. Regulation of the amount of oil that the sebaceous glands produce is one of the most important benefits of using niacinamide.

Concurrent rebuilding of healthy skin cells and also protecting skin from harmful ultraviolet radiation is a benefit of niacinamide as well.



5% concentration of niacinamide in application can help in treating pigmentation and also fight against signs of ageing like fine lines and wrinkles. The application also helped in fading dark spots. The results cannot be visible instantaneously but over a period of four weeks.



Niacinamide helps in treating aggressive acne conditions like pustules. The application over a period of time helps in improving skin texture and lesser number of lesions on the skin.



Niacinamide helps protect skin against environmental stresses like dust, pollution and sun damage. It also offers protection to regenerate the healthy skin cells.




FOOD over supplements



Instead of directly taking a supplement to lessen the deficiency it is always best to try improving intake of vitamins through food. Some sources of vitamin B3 are eggs,fish , milk and green vegetables. So next time don’t reject when your offered an extra portion of any of these over the table.


Ingredients that you can include in skincare routine along with niacinamide



Vitamin C, Kojic acid and hyaluronic acid are ingredients that can be paired with niacinamide in your skincare routine for clear skin.



How to use ?



Niacinamide can work wonders on your skin post cleansing, cause that is when your skin is free of impurities and oil.

Post that you can apply moisturizer and sunscreen before heading out.

The ingredient niacinamide can be included in your AM and PM skincare routine.



Here are some of my tried and tested niacinamide products


NYKAA SKINRX 10% niacinamide



This is mainly used for spot correction. The serum is composed of 10% niacinamide, 1% zinc and 1% alpha arbutin for spot correction of dark spots, blemishes and pigmentation.

The serum can be used in AM and PM routine.

Price: 799 quantity: 30 ml

Click here to buy



Minimalist 10% NIACINAMIDE serum



The serum is oil free and also has aloe vera juice as one of its ingredients for additional benefits. This serum is comparatively light weight and does not leave an oily residue post application.

Price: 599 quantity: 30 ml

Click here to buy :



Dot and key 10 % niacinamide spot corrector skin clearing serum



This formulation has 10% niacinamide, 1 % zinc and 1% hyaluronic acid. The serum also has sunflower seed extracts, pomegranate extracts and wheatgerm oil for additional benefits.

Price: 565 quantity : 15 ml

Click here to buy:



Few other popular niacinamide serums are listed below. I haven’t personally tried them out.



Mamaearth skin correct face serum with niacinamide and ginger extract

Click here to buy



The derma co 10 % niacinamide serum for acne marks

Click here to buy



Plum 10% niacinamide face serum with rice water.

Click here to buy

I’m taking my blog to the next level with Blogchatter’s My Friend Alexa.

Nature’s role in healing mental health

Nature can play a major role to leave a profound effect or impact on our brain. This in turn influences our behaviour helping us to alleviate stress and anxiety. Increase in attention , creative thinking and social connections are also being observed as nature’s touch to leeaad a good mental health. We’re still in the beginning stage to find more and more evidences to prove the above.

Nature helps to heal

Spending time in a greener and nature dense environment had its effects on improving self-esteem and alleviating depressive symptoms on those suffering from mental health issues.

Not only improvisation of mental health but also significant progres in physical well-being, reduction in muscle tension, heart rate and blood pressure is also observed to be some of the benefits to indulge in nature therapy.

The multiple incoming sensory signals is caused by soothing effect of nature. Lush greenery, mild natural sounds and nice fragrance also have their place in contributing to good mental health. The sight of flowers or even the scent of roses can leave a relaxed effect.

There are numerous ways to enjoy nature right from the comfort of your home. Tending a garden, working from the outdoors, meditation outdoors than doing them inside is a great change. Working or doing your daily tasks with natural light from the sun and sky is also a great way to enjoy nature indoors.

The sight of an unpleasant environment on the other hand can reverse the healing effect. Regardless of age people find nature to be soothing and pleasing. ‘ Healing Gardens ‘ is a book that cites over two-thirds of people choose natural sights to resort to when being stressed.

A recent research also proves that having a small plant indoors in offices, hospitals and at work or school can have an lessening effect on stress and anxiety.

Nature’s help in soothing

In addition to above effects of nature to heal we often resort to nature when experiencing pain and discomfort.

Our bodies are genetically engineered to look out for trees, water and natural elements and when we absorb the natural scenes we get distracted from pain and discomfort.

This was evidently seen when two sets of people post surgery where made to stay in rooms facing trees and the other group facing wall. It was fascinating to know people who see natural scenary showed better pain management than people who were made to see the wall.

Nature helps in restoring

Nature also helps to aid better general wellbeing. Almost 95% of people would assure that they felt relieved from being depressed or stressed after spending time outdoors. It also helps calm anxious mind keeping it more balanced.When you’re in a positive mood and good psychological well-being it in turn improves vitality and meaningfulness.
The ability to stay more focused or pay attention also improves when we spend time looking at nature. Nature is inherently interesting to us humans that we tend to focus naturally on what we are currently experiencing. So this serves to calm down the overactive mind and keep it refreshed for the upcoming tasks.

Research also shows that children with ADHD shower improved attention span after spending time in nature.

Nature helps in making connections


When people spend time in nature it helps them connect to one another and also to the world outside.It is also said that people who surrounded their houses with trees and greenery ended up knowing more people,have more concern with helping out each other and have strong sense of belonging than tenants who do not have trees around. They also have increased feelings unity towards their neighbours.


These people show better capacity to deal with life demands ,less violence and aggression between domestic partners.

When brain activity during nature exposure is studied it was evident that the parts of brain that are associated with empathy and love lit up and it ignited the fear and anxiety in urban scenaries.

Deadly screen time

Too much of time spent before screens lacking time to enjoy nature is said to increase depressive symptoms and isolation. In the worst case it can also lead to loss of empathy and altruism.

Nurture children with nature

So it is advisable if we bring up the younger generation to spend very less time in front of the screen and to engage with nature. They could take a walk around the block, read by the window or play outdoor games.

This post is part of blogchatter’s #causeachatter.

Lessons from the seven habits of highly effective people

The book released in 1987 since then its been one of the best sellers in Personal Development. The book helped transform people around the world in terms of their life and work.



All of us want to reach our destination and achieve our goals. As the title suggests why wouldn’t one want to learn the habits of effective people. Since we all want to achieve the goals one way to success would be to take note of habits that would help you through the journey.So putting more in terms of productivity and efficiency will help us reach there.



But hands down the book does end up teaching you a lot more than the seven habits. Called the treasure trove of productivity and the wisdom that helps you reach achievement if you still haven’t found the treasure box, its just right there waiting for you to open the chest.



There are three constants in life… change, choice and principles.
– Stephen Covey



Covey’s belief is that the way we see the entire world is through our perception. SO if we want to bring about a change in any situation we would first need to bring in the change in us. And when we say the change in us it would also mean the change in the way we perceive things.



Long long ago the success foundation was laid on character ethic which would be courage , justice, patience, integrity, modesty. But as time passed around in 1920s success moved to personality ethic which included public image, behavior and attitude.


Now all people want is faster solutions and way up the ladder. The moment they see someone or team or an organization succeed they jump with questions on how to and gaining knowledge on the techniques. But these short term solutions will not address the underlying solution but will manage to help you achieve success in short time.




Covey writes,”The way we see the problem is the problem,” We as humans must undergo what is called the paradigm shifts to go deep and change the fundamentals rather than just go about on changing the behavior and attitude on the outside just to achieve.


Now that is where Covey comes up with the seven habits that can help you out.


Habits 1,2,3 help to move from dependence to independent.Self-mastery
Habits 4,5,6 help move from independence to interdependence that’s where you focus on teamwork, collaborating and communicating.
Habit 7 helps on continuous growth and improvement and embodies the other habits.


Habit 1 Be proactive


Our ability to examine the character and decide how to view the self in situations and control our effectiveness is what makes us stand apart from the other beings. So to be effective one needs to be proactive.


Reactive people believe world is happening to them. They feel victimized and lose control. They think the problem is out which rightly points out that their thought is the actual problem.


However on the other hand the proactive people understand they responsibility which drills down to how you would respond to the situation.



Challenge yourself to test the principle of proactivity by doing the following:
1. Start replacing reactive language with proactive language.
Reactive = “He makes me so mad.”
Proactive = “I control my own feelings.”
2. Convert reactive tasks into proactive ones.



HAbit 2
Begin with the end in mind



Picture your destination in mind.Use your imaginative power to visualize what you want to see yourself become and use the conscience to plan what values will guide you.



We find it easy to make ourselves busy. Let it be working hard to achieve promotion, high pay. We don’t pause to evaluate if this is what we really want that keeps us busy.



So habit 2 will make sure we start with the end in mind so that we know the steps we take are in the right path leading to the clear destination.


Habit 3 Put First Things First



Effective management means we put first things first. The discipline that helps you prioritize what is more important than what is more urgent is what matters. Habit three helps you to go after the goals set by habit two and execute them on order of priority and moment basis.



So in a disciplined manner to stay focused on the journey we need to have the willpower do something when you actually don’t want to. We need to act according to the values rather than giving in to desires.





“Think effectiveness with people and efficiency with things.” -Stephen Covey



Habit 4 Think Win win


For effective interdependent relationship we must be sure to create win-win relationship which mutually benefit and satisfy the participants.


Covey explains that there are six paradigms of human interaction:
1. Win-Win: A situation where both people win wherein the solution and argument is beneficial and satisfactory.
2. Win-Lose: This is prone to use position,power and personality to get things done. Rather its  “If I win, you lose.”
3. Lose-Win:These people are quick to please and gain strength from popularity or acceptance something like “I lose, you win.”
4. Lose-Lose: This would be a combination of two people who are win -lose where they’re both ego invested, stubborn and end up losing. 
5. Win: These people get what they wish for and do not necessarily want the other to lose which would mean irrelevant to them.
6. Win-Win or No Deal: If you can’t reach an agreement that is mutually beneficial, there is no deal.


The safe and best option is to create a win-win situation. In win-lose and lose-win one person gets what they want, but thats only for the moment and will definitely make an impact in the relationship moving forward.
As a backup it is important we use win-win or no deal. The no deal leaves your mind free cause you needn’t manipulate people or make changes in your agenda.





“To go for Win-Win, you not only have to be nice, you have to be courageous.” -Stephen Covey



Habit 5. Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood


Much before offering advice or suggestions or to interact with the other person we must understand them in a deep manner and their perceptions through the way of empathic listening.
Seeking to understand and to be understood first requires learning to listen.
We all know the below split up suggested by communication experts.



10% of our communication is represented by our words
30% is represented by our sounds
60% is represented by our body language




The second part of Habit 5 is ” … then to be understood.” This is equally critical in achieving Win-Win solutions.


Habit 6. Synergize


We have an opportunity to create a synergy by not only understanding but also valuing the differences in the other perspective.Through being open and creative we would be able to uncover new possibilities by the synergy created.


The combination of the rest of the habits actually prepares you for habit 6.


There are 4 dimensions of nature that needs to be exercised and balanced on a regular basis.


PHYSICAL: Exercising the body to increase capacity to work and adapt. Eat well, exercise ,rest and relax. Focusing on this dimension helps develop muscles of being proactive.


SPIRITUAL: Reinforcing commitment to our value and to provide leadership to the life is the goal of spiritual dimension renewal. Meditation on a daily basis, immersing in music or literature, communicating with nature are ways to practice this renewal. This helps to practice habit 2 where we revise and commit ourselves to values on a continued basis so we begin with the end in mind.


Mental Dimension: Expanding mind is goal of renewing mental dimension.Reading a good book, recording the experiences in journal and watch programs which enrich mind and life.
This helps in practicing habit 3 to maximize the use of resource and time by effectively managing ourselves.


Social/Emotional Dimension:  Social or emotional dimension renewal is to have the goal of developing meaningful relationships. Deeply understanding people, making contributions which help in improving other lives, practice and maintain abundance mentality and help others find success helps renew this dimension.


Social and emotional dimension renewal helps to make us practice 4,5,6 and by recognizing existence of win-win solutions, understanding others and finding new alternatives through synergy.



Opening new possibilities and alternatives is possible through synergy.As a group you can collectively shunt the old scripts and write new ones.


For example, if you plant two plants close together, their roots will co-mingle and improve the quality of the soil, so that both plants will grow better than they would on their own.


Valuing the differences in terms of mental, psychological and emotional differences is the real essence of synergy.




Habit 7. Sharpen the Saw


Devoting time to renew ourselves physically, spiritually,mentally and socially will make us effective. Continuous renewal will increase the ability to practice habits on increase that is synergistic.


Taking the time for renewal and sharpening the saw is what habit 7 is focused on. It surrounds the other habits by making sure each of the one is possible by enhancing ourselves which is the greatest asset.




The real beauty of the 7 Habits is that improvement in one habit synergistically increases our ability to improve the rest.

This post is part of Blogchatter’s half marathon.

Lessons from Becoming

Michelle Obama, the name lit up the room and also inspiration to many of us. Whatever she is today is self-made and that’s something that everyone wants to become one day. She was not born with a silver spoon but she did come out with flying colors. She was never helped to go up the ladder, yet she was there before no one knew it. She had fought tooth and nail to reach and become whoever she is now and marrying the most powerful man or should I put it rightly to say the love of her life and becoming the FLOTUS.

YOUR ROLE AS A PARENT

Your role as the parent is not only to be their role model to shape them up and make them look up to you but also a good companion. From Michelle’s memoir that is so inspiring that right from when she was small she was taught “Not to let anyone walk over you and to stand up when someone tries to bully.” Well I must say that should be the most important lesson any parent must teach their little one. Standing up for themselves and not letting them be vulnerable for someone to hurt them.

Mom-Daughter bond

The bond between mom and daughter should be transparent and open. More than a parent they should be friends with each other which will help them make this relationship work. Young Michelle was always fascinated by coming up with creative solutions to common problems right from the time of preschool. She was equally encouraged by her mom , Marian Robinson to continue doing so. She would share all her adventures with her mom which made her mom well aware of what Michelle would think and do.

To me, there was magic in the learning.

But her enthusiasm dropped when she was in grade two. Noticed by her mom about her demotivation in school,she got to understand it was due to her teacher at school who was cruel to students. So instead of dealing like every other parent, she took up the matter to the Principal who with the other authorities agreed to promote her to the next grade since she had enough knowledge.

So as a parent, instead of treating the kids as an immature human being, if they’re mood swings are noticed by paying attention and try to understand the emotional let down they’re experiencing it can play a great part in evolving the childhood experiences of the kid.

My mother maintained the sort of parental mind-set that I now recognize as brilliant and nearly impossible to emulate — kind of unflappable Zen neutrality… She wasn’t quick to judge and she wasn’t quick to meddle. Instead, she monitored our moods and bore benevolent witness to whatever travails or triumphs a day might bring… When we’d done something great, we received just enough praise to know she was happy with us, but never so much that it became the reason we did what we did.

Being a woman in a (male) dominated world

As a kid, Michelle was enriched and instilled with knowledge on the wonders that good education would bring her even in her later ages. She passed college in flying colors and being among underdogs but she paved her way through landing in a well-paid job is a story that inspires every reader who picks the book on how the magic of a hard working person can help destroy all the barriers be it color or birth.

Michelle does share her experience of being the only woman and in particular african-american woman in most of the rooms and still managing to succeed.

Women endure entire lifetimes of these indignities — in the form of catcalls, groping, assault, oppression. These things injure us. They sap our strength. Some of the cuts are so small they’re barely visible. Others are huge and gaping, leaving scars that never heal. Either way, they accumulate. We carry them everywhere, to and from school and work, at home while raising our children, at our places of worship, anytime we try to advance.

Love doesn’t define you and don’t let it

Michelle’s love story and the way she settled down is a fairy tale indeed. You need to have your hold when you are in a relationship. Happiness might give you an impression that it depends on the physical presence and emotional fallback to the availability of your partner, but in reality it isn’t.

It was possible that I was more in charge of my happiness than I was allowing myself to be.

Your partner’s vision and ambition shouldn’t be overshadowing on you. Instead it should be the one that would pave way for you to grow and bring out the best in you. This is exactly what Michelle talks about. She also includes qualities that help in making the marriage hold together, but also makes you understand that in addition to compatibility adjustment/flexibility is equally important to hold the family together.

The answer, I’m guessing, is probably the best and most sustaining answer to nearly every question arising inside a marriage, no matter who you are or what the issue is: You find ways to adapt. If you’re in it forever, there’s really no choice.

Our partners might not have the same vision as us and something that would seem different than what we thought,but that does not mean even in the literal sense that you do not love them and vice versa. The key is in the commitment that the partners take where in you make the relationship work helping you both achieve what you wanted not without your hearts beating for each other.

Just like everyone of us she wasn’t prepared motherhood because she also found it exhausting. The fact that her hubster could go to the gym and she had to struggle with kids made it even worse. She then realized that instead of cribbing on that she could find ways to make time for herself.

My favourite quotes

“So many of us go through life with our stories hidden, feeling ashamed or afraid when our whole truth doesn’t live up to some established ideal.”


“Now I think it’s one of the most useless questions an adult can ask a child—What do you want to be when you grow up? As if growing up is finite. As if at some point you become something and that’s the end.”


“Inspiration on its own was shallow; you had to back it up with hard work.”


“It was possible, I knew, to live on two planes at once—to have one’s feet planted in reality but pointed in the direction of progress.”


“For me, becoming isn’t about arriving somewhere or achieving a certain aim. I see it instead as forward motion, a means of evolving, a way to reach continuously toward a better self. The journey doesn’t end.”

This post is part of Blogchatter’s half marathon.

Lessons from Think and grow rich

A classic book that analyses the life of successful men . The secret to their success and these are men from all walks of life.

So if you’re looking to learn the secrets to wealth, this book is unquestionably the best choice.

The book was first published in 1937 and has sold over 70 million copies.

The first word in the title Think shows you that the main thing to focus on is the mindset.

The book gives in detail the thirteen steps to building wealth. These are the thirteen steps to riches.

““The starting point of all achievement is DESIRE. Keep this constantly in mind. Weak desire brings weak results, just as a small fire makes a small amount of heat.” – Napoleon Hill

Having a burning desire

The most critical word here to note is burning. A lukewarm or a normal temperature desire will not have an effect. As life goes on, notice what lights you up well enough that prepares you to commit accomplishing that no matter what.

A burning desire is the actually the one which ignites the beginning of your dream.

Organized plan and refining it

“A quitter never wins – and – a winner never quits.” – Napoleon Hill

When you dream of something which isn’t followed by a plan, it’s just a mere wish. It’s always good to think about the dream that gives you happy memories but keep in mind that getting to make it reality which actually putting up a plan will zero your chances.

A dream requires more than a desire. You need to take right actions. And to know the right times to take the right actions you need to have a recognised plan. The organized plan will become your roadmap to success.

Adapting and preparing for adversity

Problems crop up even with the best plans in hand. This is an inevitable part of human life but what you need to focus on is how to handle teh adversity.

The book highlights how all successful people handled adversity and the one important thing they all did. It is to see the good in every problem.

“Every adversity has within it the seed of an equal or greater opportunity.”

Finding the good in whatever situation it may be no matter how worse it is , was the one most successful people practiced. This is one crucial step for you to succeed.

Great team

You can never accumulate great wealth single handedly. You need the help of others. Just surround yourself with good people.

You as a person single handedly cannot assume and do everything on your own nor you are aware of all what you should be doing. You need a team to create your dream to reality.

Fear of criticism

As per Napoleon there are six fears which stop people attaining riches.

  • The fear of poverty
  • The fear of criticism
  • The fear of ill health
  • The fear of loss of love of someone
  • The fear of old age
  • The fear of death

The fear of criticism in the above is considered the most powerful and certainly one that affects us the most.

It makes you lose hope and feel dejected which is why most people feel very uncomfortable to receive it.

This post is part of Blogchatter’s half marathon.

Lessons from Lean In

If it’s one book that talks about women to work hard and claim their position, then Shery Sandberg’s Lean in is the one that you should be reaching out for.

It’s the one book that helped me shape my thoughts and think from the perspective of a woman. What the book constantly iterated was the you already have the skills that you need to achieve and don’t be afraid to reach for what you want.

Let me list down the takeaways.

The impostor syndrome and everyone has their dose

All the while there was at least one moment where the thought ‘ I can’t do it’ had cropped. But women in particular would have faced this a lot. You needn’t know everything right now to excel in your future roles. If you take an example a lot of many managers will not know the right answer to many questions. But all that you need to understand is that the empowerment you get when you learn from the situation and have a good team that helps you in giving an honest feedback.

Mentor

Finding a right mentor will definitely help you in reaching what you want a lot quicker. The reason is that they will be able to tell you in a straight forward manner what would work and what wouldn’t. So if you invest the time in sincerely finding out the right mentor you are sure to reap countless returns.

Finding goal and it’s path but not others

The best lesson from the book would actually be the part where it says don’t measure your success with other people’s ruler. There is no one fixed path that would right away take you towards success. And no person has the right to portray their opinion on how slow or how fast you take the steps in achieving success. The best way would be to put a map that portrays the next eighteen months of your life and few more years and from there discuss with your mentor for a doable plan that helps you out.

Define your limits at home – you can’t have it all

Do not fear to know your limits. Each one of us has a different set of priorities where the work can not always be the top. Together we should be supportive of ourselves and colleagues to find a work life balance.

The key to more success is owning success

We need to share each other’s success and help in promoting each other. Be comfortable in sharing personal successes. You are the best advocate of yourself so the next time don’t worry to share your success on social media. This is not shameful.

Sit at the table

Sit at the table would mean that you’d have to feel worthy of sitting with others on the table. The thought process that portrays you don’t deserve this, you aren’t good enough and your currently here because of others has to be terminated. Make sure to put value on yourself cause if you don’t believe that you are good enough who else will?

You don’t need to be loved by others

If you keep thinking what people would think of your job, family, decisions you can’t go farther from where you are.

If you take classic example of a male and female at work say Henry and Harkin. Both are respected but if there has to be a choice it will be Henry because he is more appealing and Harkin is selfish and not someone who should be hired.

Success and likeability are positively correlated for men and negatively correlated for women. Our stereotype of men holds that they are providers, decisive, and driven. Our stereotype of women holds that we are caregivers, sensitive, and communal.

Women who want to achieve and are ambitious are often seen to be arrogant, not being team player and someone difficult to work with.

If you want to change things, you can’t please everyone. If you do please everyone, you aren’t making enough progress.

Don’t leave before you leave

Don’t leave your job before you actually need to leave it. Don’t look for the entry with the exit in mind. So next time don’t hit the brakes. Take a deep breath and slow down. Only a challenging, and well rewarding job will begin to make that choice a fair contest.

Partner a real partner

If men and women in the house are working women do more of house work and childcare. But you can’t blame it on the men because both have their own things.

The belief that mothers are more committed to family than to work penalizes women because employers assume they won’t live up to expectations of

professional dedication. The reverse is true for men, who are expected to put their careers first. We judge men primarily by their professional success and send them a clear message that personal achievements are insufficient for them to be valued or feel fulfilled.

Women often reject help because they feel they can do it faster rather than let the partner try it out. Women need help and they need to accept.

Women must understand and agree to have their partner help and men must understand and help in supporting the woman’s career.

Work hard

Good job performance leads to good rewards. Most of us believe in this. This is called tiara syndrome wherein we wait for someone to appreciate our efforts. We needn’t wait for any miracle to happen.

We should take risks, challenges and not be ashamed to ask for promotion.

This post is part of Blogchatter’s half marathon.

Lessons from the Secret

Published in 2006, translated into 44 languages worldwide and sold over 20 million copies, the Secret by Rhonda Byrne should definitely be one of the books that you should read before turning 30.

The book garners the secret to achieve what you want. The book lets you know in detail what you need to wish for or how in order to achieve it.

The premises of the law of attraction is what the book clearly outlays. It goes like,

Basically, the law of attraction tells us whatever we will believe, we will manifest. If we believe we are deserving of great love, then we will manifest it. If we believe we are going to be poor, we’re going to stay poor. If we believe we don’t deserve something, it’s not going to come to us. Sounds pretty amazing, right?

Makes it very simple to understand that what you think becomes the reality . So the thoughts you have deep down will have a direct impact on what you manifest

Let me quickly take you through the lessons from this book.

The law of attraction

“The law of attraction is the greatest and most infallible law upon which the entire system of creation depends.”

What you think and what you focus attracts things that you want in life just similar to how gravity pulls things down.

Thinking is the starting point

Emotions, actions, habits, career, beliefs, speech, values whatever we give out is based on what we think.

What you see around yourself today was someone else’s thought in the past that was brought to reality.

Now that understanding that the way you think will be the starting point, if there is a change that you want you know where to start making it.

The present circumstance is a result of your past thoughts so the future you want to see will depend on what your thoughts are today.

You attract what you focus on

Whatever you focus on is what you will attract.

Say if you focus on promotion and vacation you get it. On the other hand if you focus on what you don’t want, ( debts) you get that too.

Most people are thinking about what they don’t want, and they’re wondering why it shows up over and over again.”

People predominantly focus on what they don’t want and without knowing since they focus a lot on it, they tend to attract it.

So if you want something, make it happen in your thoughts, think all the time about it and make sure you focus and also put in your energy into it.

Negative word attraction

The universe doesn’t understand negative words.

Say no, don’t, doesn’t and not. So when you put that in your thought your actually attracting it from the universe.

I don’t want to be poor= I want to be poor

I don’t want to fail = I want to fail

So make sure you think about only what you want. So instead of putting it as I don’t want to fail. Think of it as I will be successful or even better would be that I am successful.

Listen to your feelings

Paying close attention to feelings lets you understand your thoughts. This is what the Secret teaches you.

Let’s take an example of how we feel now?

Happy feeling= happy thoughts

Dejected feelings= dejected thoughts

Jealous feelings= jealous thoughts

The secret tells you to shift focus on what you want when you feel sad, angry or dejected. This will be the solution to your problem, shifting focus from what you don’t want to what you want.

The sooner you switch to positive focus, the more positive your thoughts will be and thereby will be attracting the same from universe.

Three step to success: ask, believe and receive

Ask : Whatever you desire or want to ask, make sure you go down to be specific.

Say instead of saying I want to be successful say I want to become successful in my new venture by two months.

And now if that doesn’t happen in two months you cannot exclaim this approach failed. Let’s look into step two.

Believe : you will attract only what you believe in.

Let’s consider the example from above where you mentioned you want to be successful in your new venture, but somewhere down inside you are still doubtful if you will make it, makes its clear that you don’t believe in what you want.

So first you need to believe that what you wish for is attainable. Only then the universe would be convinced.

So becoming successful in your new venture is something that you are doubtful of in two months, how can the universe be convinced? Sounds legit ?

Receive: So once you start believing pretend that you’ve attained it and start living with it.

This will tube you into the right frequency and also tune your energy completely to receive it.

So if you want to be a designer, keep telling yourself each that you’re a designer which will mould the behavior by creating your role and design with that mindset.

The behavior of having received it, will make you commit actions which help in achieving that goal.

Being grateful

“The power of gratitude stands above everything else. If you only do one thing with the knowledge of the Secret use gratitude until it becomes your way of life.”

The biggest secret is to be grateful for what you already have in life and to be thankful for what you want to receive in future.

This gives a good vibe and also a lot of positive thoughts. Being grateful helps in shifting focus from what you don’t have to what you have.

“Each morning before you get out of bed, make it a habit to feel the feelings of gratitude in advance for the great day ahead, as though it is done.”

I could continue to keep on writing about this book but I’d really love if you could grab a copy of this life changer and read the remaining secrets.

This post is part of Blogchatter’s half marathon.

This blog post is part of the blog challenge ‘Blogaberry Dazzle’ hosted by Cindy D’Silva and Noor Anand Chawla and sponsored by Bakez by Daizy.

Lessons from As a man thinketh

I’m still dumbstruck that books published long long ago still hold good when it comes to giving us life lessons. Published in a period where there was not much importance to trends and fads these books convey the lessons of leading life in a fulfilling manner.

As a man thinketh was published in 1902 by James Allen. Self-help books are usually deemed very long but on the contrary this book gives you the lessons in almost an hour.

Known as one of the self-help classics the books is centred predominantly on the theme that harnessing the power of thoughts helps you to master life. Did you know that James Allen was a pioneer in the self-help movement?

You become what you think

The person who you are now, us because of the thoughts that you previously had or having now. If you’d want to incorporate a change start changing the thoughts .

The hidden seeds of thoughts give rise to all actions of a person.

Good thoughts and results can never produce bad results; bad thoughts and actions can never produce good results.

Divine perfection is achieved with choosing and applying good thoughts. But on the other side, choosing and applying wrong thoughts can make him stoop below the level of beast.

If it is time to weed out bad thoughts it is today. Choose this day to not accept the negative thoughts and fight back. To take control of life, take control of your mind.

Mind is like a garden

The mind is a garden thay can be cultivated in a wise manner or if let loose can grow wild. It is upto you to sow the seeds of beautiful flowers, if not you will see useless weeds.

Think of you as the gardener who pulls out unnecessary weeds and chooses the right seed to sow, nurture and yield beautiful flowers. Choosing to showcase your mind with beautiful flowers or useless weeds depends upon your thoughts.

Life is beautiful when you make the right choices if not the mind is consumed by useless weeds.

“A man’s mind may be likened to a garden, which may be intelligently cultivated or allowed to run wild.”

The beautiful thoughts can be a skill, or a life changing decision so start making the right choices.

Thoughts can not only mentally affect you, it can physically too

Your thoughts which include the how and what can influence not only your mental health but also the body physically.

Being healthy is not only about the body, it also includes the mind. So people who constantly fear of contracting diseases are often the ones who suffer.

The body is the mind’s servant so it choses to obey the signals it receives.

Change of diet will not help a man who will not change his thoughts.

The way of thinking also affects the way people age. People in nineties are bright and always smiling but whereas the one’s in mid thirty to forties are still seen with inharmonious contours.

Anxiety quickly demoralizes the whole body, and lays it open to the, entrance of disease.

What you think can have an impact on your sleep cycle, heart rate and chronic illness. You can think your way to wrinkly skin. Whereas happy and cheerful thoughts can make you beam with youthfulness.

You being shaped doesn’t rely on your circumstances

Just because you’re from a different background or an environment that is unsupportive doesn’t mean that you cannot get what you want. The outer world of circumstances shapes your inner world of thoughts so your circumstances don’t stand the chance to decide what you cannot achieve.

Men are anxious to improve their circumstances, but are unwilling to improve themselves; they, therefore, remain bound

You are free to choose the way to respond to any circumstance. And do you know what’s the best way? To focus the area where you have control. You win life if you choose to focus on areas which have your control and ways to improvise.

Thoughts and actions go hand in hand

Most self-help preachers say that you can achieve if you believe in something. Known as the law of attraction.

However, James on the other hand says that the thoughts on your mind will only be the starting point. If the thoughts are not supported by right actions, you can never achieve what you wished for.

Stepping out, taking action and achieving what you want gets you to your dream. Just sitting and waiting for it to come to you will do no good.

Not what he wishes and prays for does a man get, but what he justly earns. His wishes and prayers are only gratified and answered when they harmonize with his thoughts and actions.
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This post is part of Blogchatter’s half marathon.

Lessons from Ikigai

Does this word ring a bell? Yes its also one of the most popular google search terms.

Ikigai pronounced as ee-key-guy is a Japanese concept that combines the terms iki, meaning “life,” and gai, meaning “benefit” or “worth.”

When you combine both terms it means that which gives worth to your life or meaning to your life or the purpose of your life.

There is a similar French term that goes as ‘raison d’etre’ or the ‘reason for being’. Though the concept has been there for years, it is after the release of the book it garnered worldwide audience.



The concept ‘Ikigai’ evolved from the basic health and wellness principles of the Japanese traditional medicine. The basic principle of which is that the physical well-being is predominantly dependent on the mental-emotional health and sense of purpose in life.

The devotion or activities that one enjoys brings in a sense of well-being and fulfillment which is called ‘Ikigai’. Cognitive-Behavioral therapy stresses on pursuing or taking up activities that give enjoyment, a sense of mastery that helps in alleviating the disorder of depression. It is known that Ikigai resonates the same.



The Ikigai diagram well illustrates the concept as a purpose in life that has both personal and social dimensions. It has spheres which overlap the below which make it easier to understand and implement the concept in daily life.

  • What you love
  • What you are good at
  • What the world needs
  • What you can get paid for


 
Here I list down my takeaways from the book



Finding the Ikigai



Ikigai is the reason to jump out from bed every morning for the Japanese. As straight forward as it is, it is the very reason that you wake up for the new day ahead. Finding it out and finding the right one can make a lot of difference. Waking up with positive thoughts will definitely guarantee a good day. The people at Okinawa have their backyard gardens, community gatherings and little walk that they look forward to during each day. The reason you wake up needn’t be to change the world at one go.



Right amount of sleep



There are certain factors that help you age comparatively slower than normal. Sleep is one of the most important factors. As we age the functionalities of our body slow and complications pop up, it is inevitable. To slow the process down we take steps to reduce stress and eat healthy meals but not to forget the scientifically proven tool for anti-ageing is sleep itself. Melatonin that secrets when we sleep is one of the most powerful anti oxidant that has various benefits. Slowing down the risk factor for Alzheimer, prevention of cancer, osteoporosis, heart problems and improving immunity are some to name a few. So the secret to longevity is within us.



Wabi sabi



Love for the imperfect or wabi sabi as they call it can be explained with a classic example in the Japanese culture the level of attention given to making tea rather I’d put it as the art of making tea.

Handling with slowness and precision makes tea making a beautiful craft. Taking it at a slow pace and with complete focus on the task is the principle here. This can be applied to any task you do or you see someone to do.

Constant search for beauty in imperfection and the willingness to accept the life’s natural cycle is wabi-sabi. We as people and the life in itself is imperfect, incomplete and not permanent.




Never Retire



Find that something that never makes you to retire. Something that wants you to be kept living has to found. Ensure that your brain and your body is active.

“Only staying active will make you want to live a hundred years.”



Live in the present or Ichi-go ichi-e



Most of us are too engrossed thinking about the past or worried about the future. We need to slow down the pace and learn to enjoy the present. The present has the moments that matter and they need to be enjoyed.



We discover the meaning of life and we do not create it.



Work really hard but let that be your Ikigai. Hardworking doesn’t mean you have to be too serious and stressed. The effort that you put in has to matter and not the result. So enjoy the process.


80% rule or hara hachi bu



Easiest and the effective rule . As you are eating when you feel almost full, stop eating. So when you are two-thirds full . Eating this way limits the calorie intake thereby leading to less IGF-1 in body as it plays a huge role in ageing. If you are wondering what IGF-1 is its insulin like growth factor 1.

Click here to purchase your copy. https://amzn.to/3AEPap2

This post is part of Blogchatter’s half marathon.