Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Compliments

Why do we start a question with a compliment?

I attended a talk this afternoon and noticed that a few of the people asking questions in the Q&A session started with a compliment. I do believe they were genuine, and therefore nice, gestures, but am curious as to how does one reacts to such comments.

I'm not good at receiving compliments so am biased towards them. If my speech is good, don't flatter me. Simply ask your question as the real compliment is in the quality of the debate or answer the question brings forth (remember, there are no stupid questions, expect of the unasked one.)

Compliments are good, they deserve their place in a society but they would be better if separated from the question. A speaker needs feedback and the true compliment is in you asking a question : )

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Judging

It's amazing how easy it is to judge someone without realising how little we know about that person or even the context of the situation.

Why?

Why do we spend our time judging others, thinking we know better how they should live their lives? Don't we have enough activities, issues and challenges ourselves that we wander the realms of another?

Bizarre, weird, odd even.

Is it because we were told not to judge that we do so? If so, the brain does work in funny ways. This argument seems to implies that we don't understand the concept of 'don't' and retain the 'judge' part. Utter rubbish if I may judge...

Do we judge because we care? After all, why not share our experiences with someone who could benefit from it? This is altruistic, we are somehow wired to help others and one of the best way we know how is to share what we've been through. I've been through such experiences and am happy someone did take the time to do so. I'm also guilty of doing it to others and not always sure if it had the same effect (though I know at times it completely backfired : )

Sharing is good. Giving an opinion is good. Judging...not so much.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Good intention

Should we be rewarded for our good intentions?

If the intentions were truly good, they should require no reward : )

We live in reward based world. If I do this, I expect that. No action is done for the pure pleasure or to simply help someone else, without hidden agenda. You could almost argue that charity is a selfish act that is done to satisfy the doer's ego. In most cases, it is. And there is little wrong with it. After all, if we are defined by what we think, by what we do, we might as well be doing good to make us feel good.

Good intentions are the start to doing the right thing. They're not the end however. Good intentions, if based on a dogmatic view of the world, you could as easily lead to do evil as not. So you can't stop at good intentions, you need to have good actions, good rewards, good measurement, etc. In a way, it's just the beginning of being good. That's why so many lose their way, such intention is often hard to keep-up and entropy will drag you down, constantly.

Good intentions are just the beginning. To have them is a gift. All you need now is to implement them everyday, forever.



Sunday, August 30, 2009

The knowledge of old hasn't dissapeared

I've always felt that with the disappearance of civilisations, library, geniuses and their work, dogmatism, etc. a huge amount of knowledge that would be beneficial today had been lost.

That is until recently.

I realised a couple of months ago during a small epiphany that such knowledge was not lost but existed in myth, stories, behaviour, etc. waiting to be rediscovered. The reason it seems to have disappeared is that it is hard work to discover it. Harder than trying to think anew.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Can you question faith?

Technically you cant...that's the magic of faith

But what's the value of faith if you can't use your free will and question it?

None? All?

Faith is a beautiful thing and we should admire those who possess it. Especially when it's received rather than built. But for faith to be real, we should question it all the time. If it doesn't resist your questioning, then it's not faith. It was simply a belief which can be destroyed by the smallest idea.

True faith resists any question.

Which brings about another question (ironically.) If true faith survives any questions, then what is the value of free will?

None?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Quiet

How is it that the brain can switch off the noise around it and allow us to focus?

It's puzzling that we can be both creative and focused while in the middle of the noisiest surroundings and let our mind wander away when we're in total silence. The noise around us seem to force the brain to work no matter what. That activity, and the fact that we need to fight it to do a task, enhances our thinking. 

Though if the noise is too loud, it could destroy it completely. 

Interestingly, it's the change that allows us to focus. 

After a period in silence working away we switch off and seek to rest. By moving to a coffee place, we somehow recharge and can take the task at hand one step further. 

I don't know how it works and wonder if I need to. It works. That's what matters.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Sloth is not what I thought it was

I've always thought of sloth as being lazy but it's been redefined for me.

Sloth is not using your talents or gifts...and that's a true sin.

Not using your talents is self-punishment and it punishes us all.

We're all born with one talent, maybe more. But there is one that defines us, defines our role in society and life in general. The issue is that we're not educated to identify or even harness this talent. We're not shown the way. Some are luckier than others and their talent shines so brightly, so strongly, that it comes out, sometimes even against their wills.

This is not the case for everyone.

Most of us need to identify that talent, develop it, nurture it and expand it to its extreme (though not too far ; ) Having a gift is truly not enough. You need to think and work at it all the time. It will never end. And that for most people is scary.

Identifying your talent will take you in areas that you're not comfortable with. It will challenge your thinking and redefine your entire life and the lives of those around you. 

Sound like fun?

Maybe, but not always. 

The alternative, not fulfilling your talent, is worse. That's the true sin.



Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Do you see yourself as a brand?

Let me help you...you are a brand.

If you don't see, that's your problem cause the world sees (and judges you) as a brand.

Your name, famous or not, your lifestyle, your choices, your actions, your vision, your mission, everything you do, say or think cry "this is my brand," 'this is who I am."

Now that we've established that you're a brand. Let's see how you can develop it into something you want (rather than let others define it.)

The first step is fairly easy. You have to decide who you're targeting your brand at. It could be your family, your boss, your friends, a boy, a girl, consumers, etc. You probably won't have just one target or, depending at which stage in your life you are, you might. 

Either way, you'll need to define precisely who your target is and then define your message. 

The second step, the message, is important as it represents who you are for life, or at least for a long time till you reach your goal. It has to be congruent with your personal beliefs whether material or spiritual. Creating a fake brand will fail cause you won't have the stamina to carry it through. You need to be honest with yourself (not always easy) and define it in relations to the world you're aiming at. If you can summarise your brand into a tagline, even better. 

These two steps are the most crucial.

Once done, you'll need to define your strategy, tactics, develop a schedule and measurements (maybe even a budget : )

Let everyone know who you are, what your brand is and work on it everyday.

The journey is worth it. 



Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Staying in touch is hard

Staying in touch is hard. It's a discipline, an art, a science. We can't assume that friends will stay friends forever. We need to keep at it. We need to talk about nothing, remember a birthday and introduce others. It's true technology has made us more connected than ever before, even turning introverts into social butterflies, but it can only go so far. 

Face to face is still the strongest form to connect with others. Nothing's better than to meet someone and discussing things. The subject matters not, as long as we connect, we're alive. For some odd reason, we need to see someone to talk with  them (not 'to' them.) Their facial expression, their eye, their smile make all the difference. Not that we need to be with friends all the time, being alone has its value, but give me a good conversation with people who like each other anytime : )



Thursday, February 26, 2009

Brain, brainy, brainless

The brain is a terrible thing to waste...though once you waste it, you won't know the difference.

We spend our entire childhood learning even though we don't really know what our learning style is. We then learn some more to practice a trade, profession or simply run around naked for a few years (a learning of its own.) 

Then we face two choices: Stop learning or learn forever.

Frankly, the most interesting of the two is the latter. No doubt. 

What scares me most are people who stop learning as they become dogmatic, sure of themselves (often beyond reason) and simply stubborn. Let's face it, it's much more fun to be stubborn while you keep on learning.

The good news is that if you've chosen point one, you won't be reading this. 

For those who keep on learning I say keep on challenging yourself. Never stop. Read, talk, write, question, ask, challenge, agree, disagree, push the envelope, fight, give-in, try, do, etc.

It never ends. And the more we know, the more you'll realise how little we actually know. The more we push our brains, the more they expend. 

What other mission should one have in life?

Well, to put such wisdom and mental capabilities to the benefit of others but that's another post : )

Never go to be the same person you were in the morning.