Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell

My whole life I believed that focusing on your strengths and following your passion is all you needed to become successful. It wasn’t until I read Outliers, by Malcolm Gladwell, I realized how important seeking opportunities and understanding your background is, as well.

Malcolm studies the elites in athletics, academia, business, etc.. and discovers patterns in their lives that make them who they are today. What he discovers is that everything, in a way, is predefined. He discovers how the most talented and working individuals cannot solely rely on their skills to become successful. Your perception of society and your background plays a huge role in how you interact with others and who you meet. He births the idea of “10,000 hours to become a master at anything.” When looking at it from a macroscale, the elites are who they are because they hit those hours before anyone else. They were given the right opportunities at the right time.

I have mixed feelings about this book. I agree with Malcolm and believe that opportunities and your background play vital roles in determining success. However, I believe we have more control over our lives than we may realize. Talent and skill play a huge role and being able to seek opportunities are just as important. I agree that some opportunities are given to us. However, there are more opportunities that we must seek or earn. Just because you start somewhere different than where you want to end up, doesn’t mean you won’t end up where you want. Overall, I think this is a great read and helped me get a closer look into what it takes to be successful.

Thank you so much for reading this week’s post! I will be doing more book reviews like this. If you plan to read or have read this book, I would love to hear what you learned from it. Tune in next Sunday to read about Failures.

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Time Management

Time management can make or break our future. Knowing how to manage one of the most precious resources in the world, plays a vital role in our success. Being able to understand and learn how to properly use it, will give us a feeling of control and a sense of freedom.

I am by far no expert. I still struggle with managing my time properly. I have, however, improved and want to share what I have learned. Being able to manage my time has given me more freedom and control over my life. Here are three things that have made the greatest impact:

Preparing! I was so bad at preparing. I would spend little to no time actually going through the tasks that I had to do or when to do them. Everything would just pile up and I would have to pull some long nights to get everything done. Even if it’s only 10 mins, that is enough time for me to understand what tasks I need to do and when I could do them during the week or the next day. I use a calendar app on my phone or my planner to keep track of my tasks.

Understanding myself! I would see every task as the same. Work is work, right? I realized that I am better at doing certain types of tasks at specific times during the day. For example, I am more productive at doing creating work in the morning. This would be meditating, reading, writing, or listening to a podcast. Any type of work that requires little effort, I would save for when I am with others because I get distracted easily. This would be grading or writing/responding to emails. Finally, I save all of my technical stuff last. This would be my homework or doing work on my research. You have to be patient and try different things to find what works best for you.

Change is inevitable! Understand that everything changes. We can only accept and prepare for it. Every day is not going to be the same and that is okay. I would get really anxious every time things didn’t go as expected or I would spend too much time doing something else. This only makes the situation worse and you pile on some unneeded stress. I can get bored doing the same things again and again, so I have started to actively seek out change in my routines.

These are just a few things that work for me. It is not meant to be easy, nor is this a step-by-step guide on how to manage your time. I would like you to use this as inspiration to find techniques that work best for you. I would love to hear what you currently use to manage your time!

Thank you for reading this week’s post! Tune in next Sunday to read about my favorite book: Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell.

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Stress

Why do we get so intimated from this word? Why are we taught to believe stress is a bad thing?

Stress allows us to grow. It allows us to learn and realize our potential. It cannot be avoided. If you want to achieve anything in your life, at some point you will have to bear this feeling.

It’s not the amount of stress you carry that breaks you down. It’s how you carry it.

Jay Shetty

Throughout our lives, we will face numerous problems and situations. Each one may be completely different than the other. However, the feeling will always be the same. We will always have a sense of added weight onto our shoulders. How we carry this weight is what drags us down. We often blame the problems or complain about the situation we are put in. When in reality, it’s the solution we should be focusing on. I have learned that we have little to no control over the majority of the situations we are put in. In the end, we are defined by how we react.

When you change the way you carry that weight, you are changing your perception of stress. Instead of seeing it as a hurdle or hinderance; you start seeing it as an opportunity. Shifting my perspective has changed the way I deal with problems and make decisions.

Another issue I dealt with was being involved with too many different things. I was involved with 6 different clubs and taking over 17 hours of classes. It was rare for me to have any time for just myself. I was involved in things that would have little to no benefit in the career I wanted to pursue. I realized this once I took the time to define who I wanted to be. Understanding myself allowed me to understand what types of loads I needed to be carrying.

I am a victim of overthinking. There have been countless times where I overthink a situation and often perceive it worse than it actually is. This causes me to be stressful and clouds my decision making. Distracting myself by doing things I like usually helps me avoid this issue. Over the summer I had no idea where I would be in August due to immigration. I had just graduated from the University of Kansas having no idea what my future holds. My whole life was dependent on a piece of paper from the government. My family came to visit me for my graduation in May. It wasn’t until after they left, I realized all the stress and anxiety I had of my future. There were numerous sleepless nights and stressful moments. I eventually realized, how little control I had over the situation. Wasting my time thinking about or worrying about what was to happen would only add onto the stress. So, I started reading, working out, cooking different dishes, selling stuff online, watching movies etc.. Anything that would distract me. I had done everything right and trusted that whatever would happen will happen for the best. When we start overthinking, we start adding weight that was never meant to be there.

Every time I face a difficult situation or have a lot of pressure on me, I start reflecting. I reflect on past situations where I had the same feeling and how I overcame it. I use my past accomplishments as a way to inspire and motivate me to get through my present. More often than, we give little to no credit for our past. We have to take the time to appreciate the things we have accomplished to have the ability to appreciate the things we will.

I am constantly trying to improve and trying to learn new ways o dealing with stress. I believe it is important to know that dealing with stress isn’t. It is something that can’t be avoided and it is perfectly okay to have a breakdown. In the end, we are human and we aren’t perfect.

Thank you so much for reading this week’s post! I would love to hear your moethods of overcoming stress! Tune in next Sunday to read about time management.

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Perfection

We spend so much of our time trying to be perfect, never realizing that we already are. I believe that perfection is just an illusion that was created to motivate us to keep growing. I realized that happiness doesn’t come from finally achieving “perfection.” It comes from striving for it. It is during the journey we learn more about ourselves. It is during the journey we realize our purpose. However, recently the purpose behind “perfection” has been changed with the influence of social media.

Social media has been revolutionary. You can follow your friends, family, or the famed from your couch no matter where they are in the world. You can learn more about their hobbies, interests, or personality. However, how much of it is actually true? How much of the content you see is truly them?

I recently noticed that a majority of the time we only showcase our “perfect” moments. You have to have the “right” lighting. You have to be with the “right” people. You have to be wearing the “right” clothes. We start believing this false perception of what life should be like. Instead of living our own purpose and ambitions, we start becoming someone else. We believe that if we want to be successful, then we have to act and be a certain way.

I had this same connotation for a long time. More often than not, I was posting not for myself but for others. I was posting to get attention. I was posting to “fit in.” I was posting to be liked. I believed that this is who I’m supposed to be and should follow these steps to achieve it. My happiness and self-worth were based on a number on a screen. It wasn’t until recently I realized that true genuine happiness is found within yourself. You have to find happiness within before you seek for it in the world.

Now, I’m not saying that social media is bad and everyone should delete it. Social media is a great way to share your life and connect with friends and family. It has impacted the communication industry in an ingenious way. All I want is that before you make a post, write a tweet, or add to your story, ask yourself whether it is really you doing it or someone else who you’re pretending to be. In my eyes, real “perfection” is found in the imperfections.

Thank you so much for reading this post! This is something I still struggle with today. The purpose of this whole blog is to relay this message. I am not perfect. I am human and I make mistakes. I use this as a medium to showcase everything I have learned. Let’s keep growing together! I would love to hear your thoughts! Please share with friends and family who would benefit from this. Tune in next Sunday to read about stress!

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My Week without Headphones

We are constantly listening to something. Whether we’re walking, working out, driving, studying, eating, or even meditating, we spend so much time with our headphones and separate ourselves from the present. Music allows us to harmonize and express our emotions. It is a type of glue they can bind us together. However, we have to make sure it does not overwhelm us. We have to make sure that we are still listening to the oldest and greatest composer of all, Nature.

I lost my headphones about a month ago. I am always listening to something. When I’m at the gym, I listen to hip-hop or rock. When I’m studying, I listen to something slower. When I’m driving, I listen to the radio. When I’m walking, cooking, or doing anything that requires little to no effort, I am listening to podcasts. I carried my headphones with me everywhere and it wasn’t until two weeks ago I became aware of the illusion it creates.

We shift our focus to whatever we are listening to. In a way, we start believing what we’re listening to is the true present. The first two weeks I lost my headphones, I didn’t think too much of it. I didn’t realize how dependent I really was. I had backup headphones but I didn’t carry them because they were too bulky. So, the only time I would be listening to something was when I was home. Then, eventually, I started becoming aware of the changes.

Every morning I take about a thirteen-minute walk from my car to campus. My path lies in a beautiful neighborhood with wide houses and serene lawns. I started noticing the smallest details. I started to notice the curved shape of the sidewalk and the way it blends in perfectly with the road. I started to notice the way the sun shines through the branches of the tallest trees. I could hear the birds chirping and the squirrels jumping. I started to realize how heavenly the world really is.

Taking the time to just listen, allowed me to appreciate so much. I was able to become more aware of the present and gain a sense of control.

About a week later, I got new headphones. However, the music I listen to on my morning walk remains the same. It is the one song that I could listen to a thousand times and never get bored of. In a way, I think it is a type of meditation for me. I am able to pay attention to every breath I take whilst, listening to my surroundings. I’m not saying to quit listening to entertainment. I’m simply trying to convince you to take at least five to six minutes out of your day to take a walk outside and just listen. You’ll start to notice things that you had no idea existed. Listen with an open mind and a grateful heart.

Thank you so much for reading this week’s post! I would love to hear your thoughts below! Tune in next Sunday to read about perfection.

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Morning Routine

This is probably one of the most undervalued concepts in our society. The morning is usually the only time that we have to ourselves. Once we get to work, school or even just check your mail you are devoting time to someone else. How we use it plays a vital role in determining the quality of that day.

This is something I have been working on probably for 4 years. Ever since my freshman year in college, I was striving to find a productive morning routine. There was about a week where I would wake up at 5 am and go get a workout in with my friend. This did not last very long due to an increase in workload and simply lack of motivation. Then throughout the summers of my college career, I would try to implement different ways of being productive throughout the day. Due to the sporadic nature of my routines, I couldn’t build a structured regiment.

It wasn’t until this summer when I really took the time and reflected upon my failed attempts. I realized the main reason I wasn’t able to follow through with my routines was due to a lack of a plan. I realized that the best morning routine starts the night before.

Having a plan allows me to be the most productive of my time. Before, I would wake up and think of what I should do. This would cause a lack of motivation in the long run and didn’t build any structure. I also realized that the morning routine you follow has to resonate with you.

When you look up morning routines, you will find hundreds of different things people do. What you may notice is that no two routines are the same. Similarly, you have to take the time to understand and build a routine that resonates with your goal. For example, my routine consists of meditation, push-ups or pull-ups, cold shower, personal reading, and business reading. The combination of meditation, some type of physical activity, and a cold shower allows me to wake up my mind and body. Reading is something that I used to struggle with and would find numerous excuses to ignore it. So I chose to implement it into my routine instead. Your routine should, in a way, be an extension of your personality.

Lastly, it takes time to build the right routine. I have been on my routine for almost 3 months and I am still taking out and adding stuff in. The only thing that matters is that you are consistent.

In the end, I am no expert. This is just my opinion and what I have found best to work for me. I have some friends who work better at nights or strive in unstructured days. So, take the time to reflect and understand yourself. I would like you to use this as inspiration not as a blueprint.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this post! If you found this helpful, please share with your family and friends. Comment one of your favorite morning activities below (mine is breakfast). Let’s build a community dedicated to self-growth, together! Tune in next Sunday to read about the week I had with no headphones.

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Fear

Fear is something we face every day. At a macro scale, it acts as an ingredient of peace in our society. Individually, it is an impactful motivator for any and all of our actions. I believe fear is important. It is used to keep order and peace in our society. However, when looking at a micro-scale, it does more harm than good. When we take the time to understand this feeling, we will be able to understand where our actions are coming from.

More often than not, we make numerous scenarios in our minds and act according to the path with the least resistance. Why do we let such a feeling control our whole lives?

Fear prevents me from trying something new. Fear prevents me from committing to someone. Fear prevents me from being myself. Humans have the ability to reason. Reason becomes a double-edged sword when thinking about fear. Based on preconceived notions, we create scenarios in our heads that prevent us from doing what we really want.

I have always been afraid of failing. Whether it was for following through on a commitment or simply a test. It has prevented me from trying a lot of things. When I took the time to understand what this feeling is, I was able to gain more control over my actions. I started to understand, which actions I was making out of choice and which actions I was making out of fear.

I have experienced those scenarios coming true. Whether it was me failing at a sport or someone breaking my trust, I realized that I was still better off taking the chance. Everyone says that you live only once. I say that you live every day and only die once. Every day is another chance to make a change. Instead of taking that chance, why should we spend it being afraid?

Thank you so much for reading this post! I would love to hear some of your fears and how you overcame them down below. Tune in next Sunday to read about Morning Routines.

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Perspective

We often have to deal with situations where we believe we have no choice or control over it. We feel we are limited by our circumstances and have to deal the consequences no matter what. Maybe it’s not our circumstances that limit us. Maybe it’s our perspective.

I believe there are multiple perspectives for every situation. For example, there are two distinct perspectives for facing struggles or challenges. You can dread it and keep asking yourself: “why does this happen to me?” or you can use it as an opportunity and ask: “what can I learn from this?” We are defined by the perspective we choose.

Understanding different perspectives can also allow us to understand each other. In a society that is keen on labeling every individual based on a few distinct characteristics, we are often too quick to judge and are never able to understand one another wholly. I made numerous mistakes where I judged someone based on how they talk or dress and didn’t bother to get to know them further. This narrow mindset has prevented me from making numerous valuable relationships. I have realized the best way to overcome judging anyone is taking the time to understand them. Instead of only seeing a few pieces of the puzzle, we need to step back and understand the whole picture.

Even time has multiple perspectives. We can see time as a thief that takes away your days. Or, you can see it as a benevolent giver that gifts you every moment. Whether it’s joyous or despair, understand that it is temporary.

Taking the time to understand different perspectives has redefined my perception of the world. I have realized that nothing can be defined by one perspective; rather, it is a combination.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this post! I would love to hear your thoughts down below! Tune in next Sunday to read about fear.

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Values

We live in a society that strives on rules. Each one has its own set of values and restrictions. We are rewarded for following them and punished for disobeying. It is a vital ingredient for maintaining peace and harmony. Why are we missing this same ingredient when it comes to ourselves?

Just like society, every individual needs to have their own rules. It gives us a sense of purpose and illustrates who we are. These rules are values that you live by and stand for. They are things you have been taught by your past and you want to live for in your future. It is what you want everyone else to remember you as. Even if it changes, your values are something that should resonate with you on a spiritual level.

I am very indecisive. There have been numerous times where I freeze up and simply can’t decide what I want. I didn’t think too much of it until recently. After doing a lot of self-reflection, I realized these moments stem from a much deeper root. I simply did not understand who I was. I had to create a set of rules for myself that would guide me for making minuscule to life-changing decisions. When realizing my values, I didn’t simply think about it and move on. I understood that if I wanted to root these values, then I must take more time in understanding myself and visualizing exactly what these would mean. Essentially, I had to take the time to understand each and every one. I took about a week or so and wrote down seven values that I would strictly follow.

These values can’t be found on the internet or a book. They must come from you! You define your own purpose and visualize the person you want to become. You visualize the type of partner, son, daughter, friend, leader, etc… From that visualization, you determine how you can grow to achieve that.

Defining my values didn’t eliminate my indecisiveness, but it did reduce it. Just like anything, your values have to be practiced. It is still difficult for me to stand by these rules. What helps me is remembering why I wrote them in the first place and my purpose. I look at my list of values every single day. Every time I look I ask my self: “Did I stand by these rules today?” Peace has to be found within ourselves before we can look to find it in the world.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this post! I would love to hear any and all your values down below! Tune in next Sunday to learn about perspective.

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Trust

Trust is one of the most powerful beliefs in our society. It can take years to build, yet, seconds to destroy. Everyone wants to be trusted and thrive on it. That is why it is important to understand how it works. I am currently reading The Speed of Trust by Stephen M.R. Covey and learned that it is built upon four qualities: integrity, intent, capabilities, and results.

Integrity has a very narrow connotation in our society. It is not just being the “nice guy.” It is following through with commitments that you make both to yourself and others. It means to be understanding and open to new perspectives. It is about having the courage to stand up for your beliefs no matter how many people are supporting you. I made a lot of commitments to myself and others that I would either forget or not follow through on. I always agreed with the crowd and never really defined my own values. This made it difficult for the ones around me to trust my judgment.

We judge ourselves based on our intent and others judge us based on our behavior.

Stephen M.R. Covey

Intent is knowing your reasons behind your actions. So many of us continue our lives without understanding our “why.” If you want to gain genuine trust then it has to come from a caring motive. You have to show that your “why” is about caring and for mutual benefit. There also has to be an agenda. We can have a motive for what we do but without a plan, we get nowhere. Having a motive defines your “why” and having an agenda defines your “how.” Finally, we have to take action. We can have the right motive and a great agenda but if we never take action, then we stay the same. There have been a lot of times where I would have the right motive and a detailed agenda but was too afraid to take action.

Trust cannot be achieved if you do not know your capabilities. You have to know your strengths. We are taught that we should focus on our weaknesses and try to improve them. I have realized that you get more benefit from focusing on your strengths and then surrounding yourself with individuals who make up for your weaknesses. Trust is something that needs to be maintained. A programmer this year has much more advanced skills that a programmer ten years ago. So, to maintain trust you have to keep improving. It becomes tough to trust someone to get future results when they are only using the tactics of the past. Finally, it is tough to hit a target if you do not know what you are aiming for. If you don’t know what your end goal is, then it is difficult for anyone, even yourself, to trust you. Having a detailed goal allowed me to better communicate with my peers.

The final quality needed to build trust is results. You can have all the other three qualities but if you aren’t producing results it is difficult for anyone to trust you. There are three actions that can be taken to improve your results. First, you have to take responsibility for your results. Even if it is good or bad. More often than not, we are told to take responsibilities for our actions. However, when taking responsibility for our results as well, we are able to be more innovative. For example, my needed result is losing 2% body fat. Instead of only focusing on the small activities in between- maintaining a proper diet, working out a certain amount of times a weak, reps, and weights- I also focus on the end result. This allows me to have an open mind and understand there are multiple ways of achieving that result. Second, you have to expect to win. It takes the same amount of effort to think about your downfall as it does to think about your success. If you expect yourself to lose, then why are you trying in the first place? Finally, whatever the consequences are you have to finish strong. This concept goes back to the idea of maintaining your commitments. When we face an obstacle we can either use it as an excuse to quit or a chance to pivot and change direction. Whatever we chose is what ultimately defines us.

Trust has always been a difficult thing for me. After reading this book, I have realized why. I understood that if we want to build trust with others, then we first have to trust ourselves. Every time you break a commitment- even as small as waking up at a time you have decided to or not defending your values, you are losing trust in yourself. This post is for those people who may be in the same position. Do not simply read this and move on. I want you to take action!

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this post! I would love to read your thoughts! Tune in next Sunday to learn about values.

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Opportunities

Throughout our lives, we are given moments where we have the ability to change the course of our whole journey. I believe you are constantly given choices but it is up to you to realize whether it’s an opportunity. Looking back at my own life, I have realized that there have been multiple opportunities that have gotten me to where I am today.

At six years old, I was given the opportunity to come to the United States of America to study. Coming in without even knowing how to introduce myself, I could have easily given up and asked for my parents to take me back. My parents knew what was best for me and I trusted their judgment. Now fifteen years later, I am grateful for where I am today and the sacrifices they had to make.

At sixteen years old, I was given the opportunity to move to Overland Park. Coming to a brand new high-school as a junior not knowing anyone, I could have asked my parents to move back to Topeka. I trusted my parents, again, and believed their judgment was correct. Now five years later, I have made some of the best friends in my life from that decision.

At eighteen years old, I was told that I had to complete my undergraduate degree before I was twenty-one if I wanted to stay in the country. Due to visa restrictions, I had to stand out from the crowd. My parents told me that I did not have to go through with it and go back to India if I wanted. I chose to stay and finish what I started. Now three years later, I have realized skills in me that I had no idea I had.

I met my first mentor at a gas station. He simply asked me what my future goals were. I responded with my plan of eventually becoming a business owner. We met at Starbucks later that week and discussed our passions. That simple conversation has led me to learn so much about what it means to have goals and how to achieve them.

I met my second mentor through my parents. I was going through a tough time deciding whether I should go to graduate school or in the workforce. I briefly talked to him for five minutes and I knew what I should do. I could have stopped that relationship right there but I didn’t. Now almost two years later, he has given me priceless knowledge about spirituality and finding your passion.

When I made these decisions, I had no idea they were opportunities. These are only a few that have benefitted me. There are probably hundreds that I have missed and did not take. I have recently realized there are multiple perspectives to every situation. It is up to us to choose the right one. You see, we are not defined by the cards we are dealt with. We are defined by how we play them.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this post! I would love to hear your thoughts below! Tune in next Sunday to learn about trust!

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The Hardest Language

No, it is not English, German, Chinese, Arabic, or Japanese. The hardest language to speak, in my opinion, is honesty. We are born to speak this language but somewhere along the lines, we forget it. In a society where authenticity is becoming scarce, this language becomes more important. Maybe if we understand “why,” we will be able to figure out “how” to bring back this language.

Everywhere around us, we can see people pretending to be who they are not. Maybe they are imitating because they do not want to accept who they are or they simply want to “fit in.” If you don’t accept who you are, then how can you understand what you want. If you have to change yourself to “fit in,” then maybe you were meant to stand out. From my understanding, a society flourishes through different perspectives and personalities, not the same.

Social media has allowed us to connect with one another in a revolutionary way. By following the “rich and famous” we think we understand them. We try to compare ourselves to their “perfect” lives. What we don’t realize is that everything we see is an illusion of what they really feel. It is a snapshot of a fake emotion they put on to get approval. It has become a way of valuing our worth based on a character we pretend to be.

I often ignored my emotions and was afraid of what others may think. I was afraid of standing out from the crowd based on my interests and passions. I wanted to simply “fit in” with the rest, so I would pretend to be someone I wasn’t. I was obsessed with Instagram and Snapchat. I would compare their “perfect” lives to mine. Little did I realize it was all an act.

Your mind and body are constantly giving you signals. Eventually, I started feeling bad about myself and was not happy with who I was becoming. Every time I would lie, I started asking myself “why.” When I started listening to myself, I realized how wrong I truly was. There is a reason I was meant to stand out. There is a reason I was given opportunities to learn. There is a reason why I made this blog. I realized how wrong it was to value my worth based on a number from a screen.

I still struggle with this language, but I am constantly improving. I am becoming more aware of when I strive off. Without authenticity, we lack innovation. Without innovation, we lack growth. I urge you to become more aware of every time you stop using this language and ask yourself: “why?” You see, when we understand the “why” the “how” will come naturally.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this post! This has probably been one of my most personal ones. I would love to hear your thoughts down below! Tune in next Sunday to learn about opportunities.

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Impact of Habits

What if I told you the way we live our life today, defines how we live our lives tomorrow. Every decision we make and every action we do impacts our future outcomes. How is this possible?

Recently, I read “The Compound Effect” by Darren Hardy. Darren Hardy, the creator of success magazine, has interviewed numerous successful individuals such as Richard Branson, Steve Jobs, and Warren Buffet. “The Compound Effect” is based on the one trait that they all have in common: consistency in their habits.

What we do every single day compounds to something great in the future. The idea is to have realistic daily habits that you can maintain long term. For example, one of my goals is to grow the LGA Lifestyle brand and make it a well-known community dedicated to self-growth. To achieve this, I interact with at least forty-five different posts and accounts related to my niche. Most of the time, I lose track and go over! I had originally started with ninety and realized it was not a habit I would be able to maintain long term. Since I will be starting graduate school in the fall, I wanted to make sure I pick a habit that I can do every single day. At the end of the day, it is about being consistent not about speed.

When we start focusing on speed instead of slow and steady progress, we have the chance of losing consistency. For example, another one of my goals is to get to 10% body fat. I used to go to gym five and sometimes even seven times a week for two hours! I got burnt out very quickly and took a one to two-month break. This cycle went on for a while. Taking those breaks in the middle takes you back to where you started. You lose discipline in your diet, as well as, motivation to continue. Now, I have made it a habit to work out at least life three times a week for an hour and have a flexible diet that fits within my macros. I have started seeing slow and steady results. The key is consistency.

Even if your habit is to read fifteen minutes a day, you will eventually finish that book. It helps to break down your goals down day by day, habit by habit. We have to start by having great days to have a great future.

I appreciate your time in reading this post! I would love to hear your daily habits and goals you are trying to achieve! Tune in next Sunday to learn about the hardest language to learn!

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The Subconscious

The subconscious mind has the power to make or break our future. It is extremely undervalued in our society. If we take the time to understand and learn how to control it, then we will have the ability to create our own future.

Everything we do is rooted from the subconscious mind. Our subconscious is able to take a thought and convert it into its physical action. It does not matter whether it is a positive or negative thought. As long as it is convicted with emotion or faith, the subconscious mind will take it in. How can we control what it takes in?

The conscious mind is able to act as a filter between the outside world and the subconscious mind. Therefore, you can control the thoughts you want to let in and the ones you want to avoid. How can we make the conscious mind do this?

Most of us, including me at times, spend a lot of time thinking about the past or worrying about the future. This causes us to lose a grasp of the present. This does not mean you should not learn from the past or prepare for the future. It just means you should not let it consume you. When you start spending most of your time in the present, you can see everything much more clearly. Time, surprisingly, slows down because you become less anxious. This, of course, is easier said than done.

I would spend so much of time regretting things I did in the past or worry about my future. This would bring so much stress and make things much more complicated than it needed to be. What helped me slow things down was meditating. Even if it was for five minutes, it gave me the ability to live in the present. Once I became aware, I realized how much more control I had over my thoughts. There are numerous ways of living in the present, meditation is just what works for me. I suggest you explore a few to see what works best for you.

Thank you so much for your time! I would love to read your thoughts down below! Tune in next Sunday to learn about the impact of habits.

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The Power of Thought

“If you think you are beaten, you are,

if you think you dare not, you don’t

If you like to win, but you think you can’t,

It is almost certain you won’t.”

Walter D. Wintle

I would like to start this blog by talking about mindset. We spend so much time making sure we have a healthy body and try to maintain a proper diet. What about our mind?

Our mind controls every thing we do, yet we spend little to no time understanding it. I found this wonderful poem by Walter D. Wintle while I was reading Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. The underlying message to this poem is: whatever we spend time thinking about, is what we achieve. If you think about losing, you will loose. If you think about failing, you will fail. If you think that your skills are not good enough to get that job, then they certainly will not be. What I understood is that your number one fan should be you. If you cannot believe in yourself, then how do you expect someone else to? Ultimately, when you learn to control your thoughts, you will learn to control your life. Of course, this is easier said than done.

Thinking a certain way for a long time can turn into a habit or a lifestyle. Most people cannot change such things overnight. It takes a lot of patience and persistence. What worked for me is catching myself every time I doubted myself or thought of anything negative. Once you start being aware of your thoughts, you will eventually be able to control it. I am no expert. Everyone is different and this is just what worked for me.

If you have anymore methods of controlling your thoughts, please share in this community! I encourage everyone to try this simple exercise and let me know your results. I hope this helps on your journey to become the best version of yourself. I look forward to seeing you next Sunday to learn about the subconscious mind!

“The best project you’ll work on is you.”

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About Me

Hello everyone,

My name is Nikhil Biju and I am a Mechanical Engineering Graduate Student at the University of Kansas. I have wanted to start this blog for a while now and I finally got the courage to do it.

Around the second year of my undergrad, I realized that most of the people I was spending my time with did not have the same mentality as me. I was never much of a reader. Through out my time at school I got by just reading notes online or guessing on the plot. Throughout school I was a good student, however it was hard for me put in the time to read things that did not resonate with me. My first book was Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki. I was gifted the book by a friend. I finished that book within a week. It was not a very long book but it was a huge milestone for me. Time flew as I read that book. I realized the reason I liked it was because I could relate to it. I come from a middle class family. Throughout my child hood I was always looking for a role model. This book allowed me to create a better visual of what type of role model I was looking for. How can you hit something, if you do not know what you are aiming for? This book opened the doors to a whole new perspective of the world for me.

I kept reading but I never acted upon anything I was learning. Knowledge without action is completely useless. I was afraid of what others would think of me. Towards the end of my sophomore year I was extremely stressed and worried about my future. During this time, my friend had suggested me to watch a documentary by Tony Robbins on Netflix. After watching that documentary, my life had completely changed. I remember crying from the documentary. There are so many misconceptions that are placed by society. For example, we are constantly told to hold in our emotions or “real men don’t cry.” It is shown as a sign of weakness. In reality, this is far from the truth. If we want to laugh with our heats out then we must learn to pour our heart out first. I believe showing emotion is a sign of bravery and courage. It shows that others’ opinion do not effect you and you appreciate who you are. Ever since then, I have wanted to create a community for like-minded individuals.

LGA stands for learn, grow, and achieve. This blog is for those individuals who are trying to break out of the norm and just don’t know how. Remember: if you want to be extraordinary, then you cannot conform to the ordinary. Every week I will post something valuable I learned and great lessons that I learned from a book I’m reading. I want you to use this as a resource to become the best version of yourself. Everything I say in this blog will be honest and my opinion. I am looking forward to connecting with you and hope fully making your life just a bit better.

“The best project you’ll work on is you.”

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