MULTITASKING: FEW INTERESTING CASE STUDIES

It was a winter time when my beloved cousin sister hurried to the bathroom for taking bath and poured warm water on her body before mixing cold water in it… And guess what… She burnt her skin. Her mind was elsewhere…probably on a multitasking mode. As we know that there are tasks which don’t need our sole engrossment and our concentration can be divided. My sister knew that taking bath doesn’t need her soul engrossment though she forgot that her soul concentration was much needed before pouring down warm water on herself.  She had a tough time managing her wounds though we had so much fun discussing her absentmindedness.

Guess what? I just called her up right now and we had a laugh talking about the same incident all over again.

Let’s move on to the next cases…

It was a morning time and my wife was screaming at me, asking me to store water in the buckets before the water runs out. And I was about to get inside the bathroom when my aunt called me. I received the phone and kept talking to her while filling the water in the first bucket. I was fine till the water came to the brink of the bucket. I bent down to lift the bucket keeping my phone between my left shoulder and head. The handle of that bucket was broken and I had to lift it by using both my hands. As soon as I lifted the heavy bucket full of water, my second wife, my beloved Nokia E63 slipped out of my embrace and ‘plop’ drowned in the deep sea water… Oops, I mean in the bucket full of water.

I quickly rescued her, took off her clothes, applied resuscitation but to no avail. She went into a lifetime comma. I had to divorce her and claimed an alimony of Rs.500 from the bakra (scapegoat) that I handed her to.

I had loved her so much and regretted multitasking at her cost…. 😛

Many times I have climbed to the 4th floor leaving my office flat which was on the 3rd floor while chatting on WhatsApp or talking to someone on the phone. Many times I have thrown the tablets into the dustbin instead of the torn wrappers while my mind is occupied with my work on the computer.

Found them funny? Did you have a good laugh? Good! I wanted it too… 😉

So to speak I am not at all good at multi-tasking. I usually give up on one while doing the other. And when I am asked to multitask, I shout back literally or show my displeasure. When my wife requires my attention while the TV is on, I ask her either to switch off the TV to talk or let me watch…do just one thing at a time.

Rajnandini, offered some good advice this week as she usually does every time and most importantly she talked about how multitasking adds heavy loads on our shoulders like – Reduced effectiveness, Lowered productivity and performance levels, Increased stress, Disorganised and cluttered mind, In many cases, more time spent than saved. Don’t you think we should get rid of those loads before getting into troubles, either with the funny ones or the serious ones? Keep thinking about it.

In the end, I am happy to close this week by bringing smiles to your faces.

Stay blessed!

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MULTI TASKING – IT’S NOT SUPER HEROISM!

She: Hi!

He: Hello Dear! What’s up?

She: Nothing…just feeling bored and alone. What are you up to?

He: Working on my presentation for tomorrow’s meeting.

She: Oops…Sorry, I am disturbing you!

He: No…no, it’s okay! I can manage it! I’m good at Multi-tasking!

She: Thank you for giving your time… you’re a superhero!

He: Mention not! You too are important to me!

Isn’t this our everyday story? Then what’s exceptional and notable!

The daily demands of our professional and personal life are so much that hardly we have time for anyone. In school we were taught about 10 to 5 is work hours and the evening is meant for socializing…but alas today socializing only exists on social media. Whereas, in reality, the human is a social animal. Everyone needs at least a little amount of time for someone to refresh life.

The Bible says,

“Whoever refreshes others will be refreshed”.

But the big question is HOW?

Often we treat people multitasking like him (‘He’ in the above chat) as, Superhero! And there is no doubt we all have at least one such person in our life whether we have discovered it or not! But what is extraordinary in their superheroism? Are they from some other planet? Are they gifted and we aren’t? If they can do multi-tasking then why can’t we?

One of the brightest minds in human history, Sir Albert Einstein said,

Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile.

Problems and Responsibilities in life are obvious and its journey only finishes in our grave! But that does not mean we will compass our life in I, Me & Mine. We all have problems and God often teaches and answers while we live for others. But DO WE LIVE FOR OTHERS?

The Bible says,

For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

Being multi-tasking is spending time, energy, and concentration. Every second is eternal after a second comes another second but not the same one! Hence, when we share our time diverting our attention towards a person and do our work alongside, it is an Eternal Gift that we gift to someone. The biggest gift we can give to someone is time! But DO WE DO SO?

“Everything that is good demands some amount of Sacrifice”.

Undoubtedly, multi-tasking demands an awful lot of sacrifices and often we may not get rewarded with our expectations rather we get cat-calls. But do we need to compromise with our goodness just because someone goes wrong! THEN WHAT’S THE RETURN?   

The Bible says,

And do not forget to do good and to share with others,

for with such sacrifices God is pleased.

However, will we still configure “MULTI-TASKING as the Super Heroic work” and inbox the term by categorizing it to a certain amount of people? How long will we be confined to our I, Me & Mine World? A life lived with giving the value of time – love and care to others alongside accomplishing our tasks and responsibilities is a life worth living…

Keep thinking!

DON’T DEFINE LIFE, JUST LIVE IT

Me then:

Sitting in computer class, learning Microsoft office package, trying my hands at different fonts available, scribbled down few lines in a poetic style:

“Life is a book, read it;

Life is a game, play it;

Life is a dish, taste it;

Life is lesson, learn it”

Me now : While thinking of all that stuff, ” Oh please cut the crap, what were you trying to do, you ain’t Shakespeare and that’s anything but poetry and last thing to be beautiful 😁.  But as they say you grow only when little wisdom is added with every passing day, I have realised one thing – there’s no need to draw comparisons and parallels, life is meant to be only lived.

Are we living in true sense?  We eat, drink, sleep – are we living?  We are chasing our dreams, celebrating occasions, mourning losses, hating people, loving things, loving to hate but are we essentially living?  Perhaps NO.  We are just filling the gap between our date of birth and death which is nothing but a number.  And everything in between in our lives is about numbers – age, number of hours you sleep for, calories taken, weight gained, targets achieved, number of bedrooms in-house, digits in salary, number of likes and follows on social media, price of accessories….. Typically everything under the sun, but where is life in our lives which is beyond any such quantification?

Happiness is the essence of life:  All our actions in our lives aim at attaining happiness.  Grabbing an ice cream at the wee hours of day gives happiness, parking that newly launched beast in the backyard is happiness, catching that extra five minutes of nap when the alarm is hell-bent on throwing you out of the bed is happiness.  I can go on.  What’s happiness for me might be a matter of indifference for you.  It’s a subjective issue.  But everything mentioned (not mentioned for that matter) doesn’t even constitute an iota when it comes to the real essence of life – the Eternal Happiness, that lies and comes from within, that’s once attained never dries up, the one which our supremacy intend us to unleash from within.

It’s not that we are completely aloof or oblivious from what our destination is.  Accidentally listening to spiritual talks, our festivals, times of distress do draw our attention towards important questions like “What’s the meaning of my life” , “how to get closer to the one and only supreme power called God”.  But again for majority of us (that includes me, I am not ashamed to admit the obvious) that’s a passing cloud before we fall to the trap of materialistic bliss of this world.

How to march towards Eternal Happiness?

Well that’s a continuous evolution before He can say that you have finally evolved.  And to begin with it’s an uphill task for sure.  That reminds me of the fact that our skin is weak that gives in easily before our souls could reap the fruits of eternal happiness.  Prayer, chanting, meditation are the three tools to keep our efforts from falling apart midway.

And here comes two fulcrum to utilize the aforesaid tools.  Two simple rules to apply in life:

Act without expectation:  When was the last time that you dropped a message wishing your long-lost friend without expecting a reply?  Or when was the last time you just picked up a big boulder impeding the way just to make a safe path for others without expecting appreciation?  Such instances for us may be countable on fingers for we all are so self-absorbed and self-centered  that we want every action of ours to be noticed even if it is for near and dear ones.  When expectations are tied to our actions, non-fulfillment of such expectations brings in gloom.  So the first rule of our journey towards Eternal Happiness is to act without expecting.  Begin with petty things and closed circles, practice and practice, just do your part with all your heart and soul in it.  See the difference of being indifferent to the laurels, soon criticism won’t affect your inner peace.

Forget and Forgive:  How I wish the first part was easy.  I simply can’t forget the words exchanged in the heat of argument that occurred two years back then how to expect  (again expectation 😁) people to forget the misdeeds of others directed towards them?  But without forgetting the past forgiving stands next to impossible.  And if one can’t forgive, can’t let the baggage of past and grudges go, there’s no way that a person could march ahead in the path shown by the supreme power.  Forgiveness is a way of easing the burden from our souls that renders us from being able to identify God in every soul.  And with God all around us what’s there to stop the stream of inner happiness from flowing.  When nothing but change is constant why let the past be stagnant in our present to disturb the future?

The idea is to commence the process of detachment from emotions that could lead us to sin and finally deviate us from the way that could lead us to our Sole (soul) destination.  Indifference to the happiness, worldly acknowledgements, tranquility of mind in adverse, in-your-face situations are the signatures of successful lives in true sense that comes from practice of these two simple rules.

Let’s inculcate these habits, , let’s just live life to the core of it and not just enact it.

LIFE – A MYSTERY YET TO BE COMPLETELY UNRAVELLED

Life is an adventure, say some.

Life is a challenge, say others.                     

Life is a puzzle for many, while for some others it’s just a smart juggle.

No great philosopher of the world has been able to give a comprehensive definition of ‘life’. Many have tried, but succeeded in giving only a partial picture.

Thinking of ‘life’, the first thing that comes to mind is the biological aspect of it. In simple terms, anything that has breath is said to be living.

So then where does this breath come from? You and I cannot infuse breath into a non-living object and make it living. We do not have that power.

To quote a verse from the account of creation given in the Bible – “Then the Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground. He breathed the breath of life into the man’s nostrils, and the man became a living person.”

Hence, the source of all life (plants, animals and human beings, though we will limit the purview of this article to human life only) is the Creator God Himself. He alone is the source and the sustainer of life. For this reason, keeping all debates aside, taking of life – be it by abortion, euthanasia, suicide or murder is a sin against the Creator – the life giver. Scientific advancements have made it possible for clones and humanoid robots to be invented, which is all marvelous indeed but, cannot in any way be equated with the creation of the Creator.

Life is meant to be social. The social aspect of life ensures that human beings live in a social relationship with fellow humans and not in isolation. Hence, the innate desire of human beings to seek and forge relationships of various kinds. Sociological research has enough data to establish that lack of human contact robs humanness of human beings. Social apathy is considered to be a sign of an underlying psychological disorder.

Life is a myriad of emotions. Without emotions, there won’t be much of a difference between human beings and vegetables. Socio-biological humans laugh, cry, love and live as an expression of their emotionality.

Adding to all the above, is the spiritual aspect of each human being. Having been created by God, there is a God-shaped vacuum inbuilt within each person. Some choose to seek and fill this vacuum by a relationship with God, some choose to substitute this space by things and people other than God, while some others decide to ignore and stifle this vacuum altogether.

All the above aspects put together give us a holistic picture of human life in general – as it ought to be. Take one slice out of it, and the picture will be fragmented.

This being life, the purpose of it is important as well. At times, we tend to flow along with the tide without sparing a thought towards its purpose and direction. That’s when the going seems easy. But, if we stop and ponder, things may not make much sense. Where is all this heading? Where am I heading? Earning, eating, drinking, enjoying, raising children, taking care of family, growing old and then waiting for death – is this all what life is all about? Or is there anything beyond this?

Sometimes, our actions seem meaningless. Sometimes, the daily toils and struggles seem monotonous beyond description so much so that we try our best to attach meaning to life by way of our jobs, children, spouse, etc.

If we look around, try to stretch our thinking skills and try to look for a complete meaning of life, it would not be possible for us to succeed at it. The reason being that while in our physical states we cannot, completely comprehend the meaning and purpose of something that has more to it than mere physical existence.

Life is more than the body.

Life is more than living, earning and procreating.

Life is more than the mundane humdrum of daily hassles.

The entirety of life can be understood only in eternity. Till then, a part of it remains a mystery. Instead of unsuccessfully trying to unravel the mystery (which can never be unraveled in the duration of our earthly existence), we can live this life to its fullest by living the revealed life to the best.

 

 

 

 

 

WHAT’S THERE IN A NAME

When I was about 10 years old, my parents and I happened to attend a wedding ceremony at my native place. Owing to the fact that we had visited our native after years, family friends and relatives – old and young were swarming from all directions to my parents. I had seen some of them when I was a kid and I could instantly recognize their face and recollect the names. The air buzzed with greetings and exchange of pleasantries like how it happens in a typical get-together. In the end, when the ceremony was over and it all fell quiet, my mom exclaimed, ‘my, you do remember people!’, at that very moment it dawned upon me that I really am gifted with this quirky but extremely useful talent, and that is remembering names of people around me.  

I catch the name of a person in the first meeting and almost never forget it. When I was in college, it took me less than a week to remember the names and faces of my fellow students in a class of 70. Now when I’ve tread into the real world, I’ve retained the names of my peers and seniors since the very first introduction. And not only that, I could think of countless instances when my friends have come to me asking the name of a senior in THEIR team which they had once mentioned to me but is now evading their mind palaces. I oblige every time.

Remembering people’s names might sound like a trivial feat prima facie, but it has greatly helped me in building my social skills. As the saying goes “A person’s name is to him or her the sweetest and most important sound in any language”. So, nothing warms someone up to you as much as when you address them with their name (with a smile on your face, of course!). It increases your likeability. It makes people feel valued, and this can a long way in building a harmonious relationship with them. Also, not to mention, it reduces awkward encounters by several times. For someone in a profession like journalism or a client-facing job like sales and marketing, this is the best skill to strive for.

I believe I’ve successfully proven that remembering names is a crucial skill. Just think of my elation when I realized that this is the hidden talent I possess!

WILL YOU FIGHT OR CAVE IN ?

“Did you say ‘No’, when he was inside you ?”, asked the doctor for the second time. The young girl, aged 7, was trembling with fear, she turned back, hugged me tight and started to cry… “Oh my dear, I wish you shouldn’t have to go through all this” was my thought.  It was very clear that the little girl did not even understand the question, of course, how can she ??  I couldn’t control myself from giving a nice lecture to the doctor…

“Didi (it means sister in hindi language), can we go back ? I don’t want to talk anymore”, her words brought instant tears to my eyes.

This happened after two months she was raped, brutally raped by many men, actually we don’t know the number of men who took an advantage of her. When she was found and brought to rehabilitation home, she had bruises all over, she had to undergo a surgery which turned out to be a life saver. So much of pain and agony at such tender age, what was her fault in all this ? 

On top of what she had to go through, the doctor’s insensible questions. I was just stupid to think that it may help her heal faster if I take her to a counselor. But, not all counselors are good. If he cannot understand how she might have felt about the horrifying act, how can he ever heal her ? I rushed her out of the hospital…

I really don’t want to give statistics of how many rapes happen, how often they happen. We all know it, and we don’t have to be accurate. It’s all in the news – fathers, brothers, grandfathers, neighbors, friends, there is no disparity in the relation when they attempt to rape. The act of sexually assaulting another person (no gender bias), even if it happens one in a million is still shameful and questions how we continue to be called humans ? Are we animals ? Where is our so called humanity ?

No rape is instantaneous. It may not be pre-planned, but it’s pre-meditated. It must have been alive in their thoughts for duration longer than the actual rape. How many of us know that most of the people who commit rape tend to repeat the act ? 

More or less similar are sexual assaults and sexual advancements. All sorts of sexual crimes do not happen only at homes, schools or colleges. After all the education, people find better ways of taking advances that are sexual in more neater and cleaner ways. Offices are no exception. I myself have been through it and I know many other colleagues who have been through. 

Sexual advancements at office usually are of quid pro quo, where the offender is either threatening to ruin your reputation at work or is not allowing you to grow unless a sexual favor is done to him/her. If not, they have a habit of it and cannot stop themselves, even when they are aware of how strict the laws are. 

What can we do to eradicate sexual assaults and how do we deal with people who would have fallen victims.

  • First and foremost, love and care for the victim as you always do.
  • If you are a man trying to help a woman going through sexual abuse
    • Give them strength, they tend to get mentally very weak…
    • Tell them that you would be there no matter how difficult the situation turns out to be.
    • Give them courage to express themselves and complain to the concerned authorities regarding what has happened.
    • Educate them that the fight won’t be easy, it indeed wouldn’t be.Be their support system.
    • If it’s a work place, school or college, the victim would be facing the offender even after the compliant has been launched, but be aware that there are laws which allow the victim to stay away from work/school for close to three months.
  • If you are woman who has gone through or is going through abuse or helping others
    • Always remember to talk to family, friends and peers.
    • Break your silence, make sure it is highlighted in all the right forums.
    • Please talk to your female colleagues and warn them of what’s happening in the work environment. ( I mentioned this point only because I got to know of many women who talk to their male colleagues, but never to their female colleagues. No offense, but may be it’s more important that your female colleagues know, so that they don’t fall prey)
  • If the victim is a kid or a young girl, never tell them that their life is ruined. It hasn’t. A girl’s life cannot be ruined just by this.
  • If at all the girl’s family has a problem with the assault, try your level best to make them understand.
  • Educate children about sexual abuses and how they can recognize them 

If I were to think of a solution, I would suggest setting up an anonymous reporting system, where the victim’s identity is hidden unless a similar incident about the same offender is reported, since the majority would be repeat offenders, it would be easier for the authorities to talk with the victims in isolation and do the needful. It is not fool proof, but would be a good start and can be extended as per our future needs.(I sincerely wish such need never arises )

Dear victims ,relatives and friends,

Please consider rape or sexual assault as an accident, in fact, it is nothing more than that and shall not disturb our lives in any way that can hinder normal life. It is not end of life.  Please highlight the incident and lodge a complaint with the authorities so that such incidents don’t repeat at the least.

WHAT IS THE REASON OF YOUR GUILT?

All of us have felt guilty one time or the other in life? It might be a huge guilt that burdens our heart down or a minor one that just goes away with time. Last 2 days we learnt about true and false guilt – but how do we know the difference between the two. How do I realize that the guilt I am feeling now is really a true guilt or a false one? I could identify about 4 reasons of feeling guilty – that might help one figure out the difference.

Breaking the promise

Breach of a promise makes us feel guilty. If you promised a friend that you would go out for a movie with her and have to cancel at last minute, it leaves a little guilt inside you. I promised myself to not eat too much fatty food yet I feel guilty when I indulge in a second chocolate pastry.

Not meeting the expectations

We live in a society and people have certain expectations from us. Our family comes first in this case. I know mothers who feel guilty about not spending enough time with the kids. Sometimes siblings drift apart from each other and that becomes a reason of guilt.

Lying

Telling lies is a complex process. We all have told lies to our parents about eating an extra chocolate or bunking classes. Now as adults the lies get more and more serious and could be a strong cause of the guilt.

Hurting another person

Hurting somebody’s feelings intentionally or unintentionally does make most of us feel guilty. Nobody likes to hurt the other person unless one has a strong feeling of revenge. This is one guilt that most common.

Doing something immoral

This area is quite grey because moral values can differ for people. Highly immoral activities are also illegal like murder, rape, theft etc. – these activities are black and white, but there are also moral values that have been changing with times and also differ depending on cultures and families. For example, 20 years back a woman engaging in pre-marital sex was considered highly immoral by Indian middle class community; today it is considered ok by majority of Indian middle class. A woman engaging in pre-marital sex would have felt high amounts of guilt 20 years back than the woman of this date. So in such cases, the feeling of guilt out of morality differs largely on a person’s up-bringing and society.

So, if you feel guilty about something – try and find out which category does your reason of guilt falls into and then probably you can better judge whether it is a true or false guilt. Living with guilt is like living in a feeling of constant failures. More guilty you feel, more negative you will get. It does not help. Do what it takes to come out of that guilt – but just remember not to hurt anyone in the process of getting rid of your own guilt.