Sunday, November 29, 2020

Break that idiot psychological space.

We all have that idiot psychological space which keeps us away from the progress. It restricted human beings to be adventurous and kept them where they are. People who broke that space became successful and rich. Few of them built their career. 

That psychological space that we don’t want to leave is our comfort zone. We all know that when we are out of our comfort zone, we learn a lot. Just observe your day, what you do? We always sit at the same place; we always take lunch with known people in the office; we always use the same route while driving. Why is this so? We don’t want to break the routine because of the comfort zone which we create. Because when you use the different route, then you have to think and have to take the risk. When we sit with different people, you have to stretch further to interact with them. If in such small things we become so comfortable, then imagine when somebody asks you to take the risk to do something you never tried.   

During one of the internal conferences, one of the senior leaders attended the first day morning in a short and t-shirt. Everybody was wearing a formal dress, but he was with the clothes like he is in a picnic. He mentioned in his speech that he just wants to make a point that he wanted to stretch himself and come out of the comfort zone. That was a simple symbolic message given to the participants. Most of the time, we worry about what people will say. 

Once a wise man was just screaming and walking around in search of somebody. One of his disciples asked him, “Oh great master, to whom you are searching for?”

“I am searching for those 4 people.” He replied.

“4 people? Who are they? And why?” asked the disciple.

“My parents and elders always asked me to think about those 4 people, to whom I had never seen?”

Disciple got confused. Looking at the confusion on the face of the disciple, the master said,” See, whenever I used to do something different, my parents and elders used to interrupt me saying, “If you do that, what those 4 people will say or think.”   

Those 4 people have almost ruined our life. We never gave justice to our dreams only because of those 4 people who are representative of the society. We have the capability and potential but we never challenged ourselves to go out of the comfort zone.

Over time, we have created that psychological space called, comfort zone.

Along with those 4 people (society), we have 2 more villains in our life. Those are your assumptions based on your own experience or somebody’s experience and fear of unknown things.   

Our mind is conditioned to use the known paths and not to create a new one. Human beings normally follow the crowd. Good news is that if you think, you can come out of your comfort zone by creating a little bit of anxiety. Leaving the comfort zone will increase productivity when you are experiencing the healthy amount of anxiety.

You can break your comfort zone just by starting something. For example, if you want to start the exercise, just start doing it; if you want to wake up early in the morning, just start waking up early in the morning.

Another measure you can take to break the comfort zone, is just change the routine, like take a lunch with different people on different days in the office, just speak to somebody to whom you think he is difficult, just break the routine and regular habits and start a new one. This looks simple, but very difficult to follow.

It is about the intention and creating habits, once you create habits you can think something big. It starts with one step.  

Please read the print replica of my latest book written for leaders on amazon kindle, Vitality in Human Resource: Adding human dimensions in HR processes

(Opinions are purely personal & does not represent my organization)         

Saturday, November 21, 2020

Me time, we time, our time

My son was just sitting idle doing nothing. He was totally in himself, in trance, just ignoring what’s happening around.

“Is anything wrong Sona?” my wife asked him the question. He is a grown-up child now, in his 12th class. Being in 12th he also may have a lot of stress which we understand. I also got attentive and asked him, “What’s happened, all well na?”

He just smiled and said, “Nothing wrong mom, just wanted to have “me time”. I am bored with all online classes, weekly tests and all this stuff.”

I put down my phone. Wife sat with him and our conversation started. We discussed his fears, his role model, his friends, books, art, except study. We shared our stories. He shared his feelings. Believe me that conversation was a heart to heart dialogue among us. We still continue doing this regularly. This gives energy to us.

This is the power of just speaking and conversing. I remember, I was in school, I had limited resources and ample time, no gazettes, no television and a lot of books in the library. I used to spend (or invest?) a lot of time with my patents, my teachers and friends. Sometimes it was just asking questions, getting scolded, reading children magazines and most of the time just sitting idle outside the home and watching everything, people, sky etc, sometimes just dreaming and sometimes just doing nothing.     

Free internet, social media, serials, web series, different shows and news channels are spoiling the society. Imagine the time spent by people on such platforms. After college, I always wanted to be updated about the events happening in the world. The intention was to improve the general knowledge. It was fine when there was limited broadcast news, however when the multiple news channels were introduced, it was too much. It was fun watching those shows initially, but then I realised that it was a total waste of time. We don’t gain much from watching those channels. For the last 4 years, I totally stopped watching news channels. I watch it just when I think I should know something and that’s also for getting updates. Anyways, all journalists are biased nowadays and they run their own narrative. They are like spokespersons for the political parties, so why to worry what they say. By doing this, I have not lost anything.

Today, the explosion of information is huge. We really need to filter that information. Our jobs are becoming demanding, so work times are stressful. Screen time is impacting our lives and we started believing that if we are not in the race, we will be behind. But the good thing is the world is full of abundance, there is no scarcity. The question is how you find it. There is abundant time available, you have to find it. There are abundant opportunities if you find it. Fortunately, the generation, which my son belongs to, believes in this.

Today, I am happy that we, in the family, have stopped watching weird news channels, senseless serials and reality shows. We control what we want to watch for just entertainment and education. Social media also should be used only for the advantage. We should not get carried away with the newsfeed, likes, and comments.   

Good organizations don’t focus on work life balance, but they focus on work life integration by giving flexibility to their employees. This includes flexi time, work from home, enough freedom to do the job. In such an arrangement, you get time to spend with your family and also yourself. Fortunately, my organization gives that flexibility to me and this also helps me to have some time for me and family. 

So, I have ‘me time’, ‘we time’ and that’s our time to enjoy the meaningful & enriched life.    

Whenever, you feel that you don’t have enough time for your family, yourself, your hobbies, just pause and reflect. There is abundant time you will find. 

In summary

  • Believe in abundance.
  • Stop watching news channels, senseless serials and TV shows.
  • Limit your time on social media, control your newsfeed.,
  • Think about ‘work life integration’ instead of ‘work life balance’ by being flexible.  
  • Engage in Conversation, Communication with Curiosity.  

Please read the print replica of my latest book written for leaders on amazon kindle, Vitality in Human Resource: Adding human dimensions in HR processes

(Opinions are purely personal & does not represent my organization)     

Friday, November 13, 2020

Wish you all a Happy Diwali !

Diwali is the festival of light and inspiration. It is the celebration of overcoming on all odds in the life. Indian economy is mainly dependent on agriculture and as it occurs at the end of a cropping season, people get money to spend to buy new clothes, gifts for family & friends. They also get the opportunity to fulfil their dreams of buying bigger possessions like cars, bikes, jewellery and houses. Hence Diwali has the larger purpose to celebrate, keep moving the economy, bring some changes in the life of others. Diwali is also a metaphor of celebrating the success of small things in life.  Everybody, from rich to poor enjoy the Diwali religiously. When it comes to Diwali celebrations, there is a spark in the eyes of each and every person. Everybody feels excited at the thought of adorning their sweet homes with various kinds of decorative items like candles and small clay lamps.

People take time out for family, come together and do the fun during these days. The spirit of Diwali is in spreading the light of knowledge. It teaches us to leave the path of enmity and resort to friendship. Amidst the hustle bustle of city life, this is one time when people come together to spend some quality time together.

Diwali is a time to turn inward and light the lamps of knowledge and truth in our hearts and minds so that we can dispel the forces of darkness and ignorance within us and allow our innate brilliance and goodness to shine forth. Goddess Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, is the principle deity associated with this festival. During Diwali we ask her for assistance in cultivating and accumulating spiritual wealth (along with prosperity), such as compassion, forgiveness, and loving-kindness.

(Eco-friendly Lantern made by Dhanashri
 visit her blog at

It is also a time to reflect on and evaluate our thoughts, words, and actions over the past year. It is a time to acknowledge and better understand our prejudices, negative behaviors, and bad habits so that we may begin the process of transforming ourselves. It is a time to discover how we can be more loving, kind, respectful, and skillful towards ourselves and others. And since all wealth, be it material or spiritual, should be shared with others who are less fortunate, Diwali is also a time to reflect on the various ways we can assist others and shine our light out into the world.

This year, we are fighting with the human crisis, e.g. corona pandemic. This pandemic is itself a great learning for all of us. Let’s pray to God and the almighty to give us the strength to fight and defeat the common enemy, novel coronavirus and bring back our life in action. It is also a time to take care and follow the guidelines of health and safety to protect from Covid19. It is a time now to bounce back, create some hope and follow the new normal routine.

On this auspicious festival of lights, may the glow of joy, prosperity & happiness illuminate your days in the year ahead...

Happy Diwali…

Vinod, Dhanashri and Atharva Bidwaik

Sunday, November 08, 2020

Difficult boss

We always believe that managers who inspire and empower their teams are good bosses. Working with them is fun. They also focus on the development of the team. High performance is expected easily while working with such inspirational leaders. However, working with a difficult manager is always challenging. Generally, you can’t choose your manager. You have to work with the manager who is assigned to you and you can’t complain or change the manager unless you change the job. Changing the job frequently is also not a good sign. Sometimes organizations are good, and your role is super, but the challenge may be the manager. What you do if you get a difficult boss. There are different types of difficult bosses. Perhaps you may not be willing to work with the toxic boss who is political, takes the credit, micromanages or bullying. It is good to be strong with such bosses. 

However difficult bosses are not always bad. We may perceive managers as difficult if they are demanding, result oriented, perfectionist and with a lot of expectations. They are always on your head. So first it is very important to understand the personality of the boss. Ironically, a bad boss can motivate members of a team to bond with each other and provide encouragement and assistance since they know that they won’t be receiving positive attention from their superior. 

One of the facts is that executives get developed while working with the difficult boss also. Of course, your development chances are more when you work with a highly competent and talented boss. But not necessarily, you will always get the inspiring boss. Sometimes you will have those managers in your life. If you find out the silver lining, you can convert the situation into an opportunity for learning. 

Jay A. Conger and Allan H Church have written a book, “The High Potential’s Advantage.” These two gentlemen have written this book after a lot of research of high potentials who are in leadership positions. This book mentions one of the traits of high potential is “Situation Sensing: means observing and responding to the task priorities, work styles, habits and behaviours that your boss values most.” In the case of a difficult boss, it is tricky. If the values of the boss don't match then it is a big conflict. However, it is good to identify the traits and behaviours of a difficult boss and decide the strategy to deal with. If you think that the value system, code of conduct and business principles are compromised, then you can take the appropriate call to escalate it at appropriate forums including whistle-blower. If your boss is just difficult because of his strong work habits, his behaviour is aggressive and certain traits are different than yours or inspirational boss to whom you role model, then it is good to have the discussion and learn from him. He may have his own perspective, he may not be aware, he may lack insight and you can help him to understand that.  

While dealing with a difficult boss, you get the opportunity to stretch yourself. You may learn:

  • Understanding human beings. You may get a different insight of the personality. 
  • Learning to deal with difficult people,
  • Communication skills while dealing with such people,
  • Conflict management as conflicts might be common,
  • Understanding the socio-political dimensions of the team and organization,

In the career you will not get only amiable peers, team and bosses. Sometimes you will have challenges and wise people learn to deal with that. It is always good to find the silver lining and adapt to the management style suitable to the difficult boss.

Please read the print replica of my latest book written for leaders on amazon kindle, Vitality in Human Resource: Adding human dimensions in HR processes

(Opinions are purely personal & does not represent my organization)     

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