Value of Time- Time Management

 

time

Turn your life in just 10 minutes :

My dad once told me : “You can apply the 10 minutes mantra to turn around your life in a tremendous way.”

I didn’t understand at first. “What’s the big deal in 10 minutes?” I asked.

“There’s indeed a big deal about it. 10 minutes, believe me son, can create a marvellous difference in our life,” my dad offered wisely.

“Elaborate please, dad,”

“I’ll tell you. But first, you’ve to get up tomorrow at 6.00 am.” My dad conditioned. I agreed.

Next day, as I woke up at the agreed time, my dad came to my room.

“What’s the time?”

“6.00 am” I replied.

“Okay, so before you can follow the 10 minutes mantra, you have to follow the art of being aware about the clock,”

I was confused. My dad continued, “Look at the clock. It’s 6.00 am. Now within 10 minutes I ask you to do the following – Arrange your bed and your table; drink two glasses of water, wash your face and brush your teeth. But keep looking at your clock while doing these. That’s it”

“Well…Okay,” I said, thinking what could be the catch my dad wanted me to capture.

I began and started doing all he asked. All the time, I kept glancing at the wall clock. Finally after 10 minutes (or 30 seconds earlier to be exact) I had finished it all.

“Well done, boy. You have turned around your life!” My dad praised, patting on my back.

“What?” I was astonished and puzzled, unable to grasp, and asked earnestly “I didn’t get you, dad.”

“Think, son, think!” My dad urged, “Recall your earlier days. How did your day started off?”

I racked my brains and pondered over. Usually, I wake up at 6.00 am. Then, I wander off, yawning lazily and even sleep for some more minutes or sit idly on my chair, my thoughts in thousand directions. And, by the time I finish the above activities, it was already past 7.00 am.

“And today, it’s just 6.10 am” my dad said as if he read my mind.

“Yes!” I exclaimed, starting to understand.

“So what made you do it?” my dad asked.

I thought. What made me do it? Because my dad told me to do? No, no. There was more to it. And then it hit me.

“ The art of being aware about the clock!” I almost shouted.

“Yes and also ten minutes.” My dad said, smiling at my wonderstruck face.

My dad explained: “By setting your eyes on the clock and thinking about 10 minutes, your mind got focused in that span of 10 minutes. It was just like a deadline or a due date. The “10 minutes” deadline kept your mind in the present; in the “NOW ” and prevented you from wandering off.”

I was impressed. Just a matter of meagre 10 minutes had such a mighty effect! I had completed all those routine activities on time. Now, I felt I have so much time ahead (as compared to 7.00am, it was just 6.10 am!). With so much time saved, I could work on creative and productive activities, instead of loitering around aimlessly. Time is indeed, the most precious thing on earth.

A question piqued my curiosity, “Dad, why only 10 minutes. Why can’t we divide our activities into 1 hour slots?”

“Good question,” my dad said, “we can. But Shorter the time, more productive you will get. Imagine, if I told you to do those routine activities in 1 hour? Your mind will make your actions slower because you’ll think you have enough time to do it. Even if an activity takes 1 hour, you can segment it into 10 minutes slots.”

“Give an example,” I was eager to know more.

“You can, for instance, segment your workout time,” my dad resumed. “10 minutes- warm-up; 10 minutes- stretching and 10 minutes-yoga,”

“Really amazing, dad; this 10 minutes stuff can make your life on a roll! Instead of long bouts of inactivity, once can benefit from the short bursts of creativity!”

“Yes. The 10 minutes stuff is just an idea. You can also make it 15 minutes or 20 minutes but not longer than that.” My dad paused and continued :

“The 10 minutes mantra can be applied in every aspect of life. A student, a professional, a businessman or anyone can apply this simple but successful technique. Take an example of student. The student can allot 10 minutes time for a topic. After that, he/she can take 2 minutes rest and resume for another ten minutes. He or she can also take time off and read a good book for 10 minutes or allot just 10 minutes for walking. All a student has to do is to be aware of the clock.

Elaborating it further, we humans have a tendency to keep on delaying small things. We know we have to pay bills on time, and still we delay it beyond the due dates. We are aware that our bike’s tyres need to get pumped, yet we don’t care to stop by the car-shop we pass every day. We promise ourselves to go to a temple on a particular day, yet we never seem to keep our own promise on time. Why? Because our mind wanders off and deems such things as unimportant. If we vow to take just 10 minutes or 20 minutes of our entire 24 hours, we would never procrastinate and our life will be million times better.”

My dad concluded: “ The 10 minutes, if followed consistently, can have a tremendous effect in anyone’s lifestyle. Procrastination and Idleness will vanish away replaced by Focus and Intensity. People will tell you they are short of time. No time for the loved ones, no time for pursuing their dreams, no time to eat, no time for their health as if they are the most busiest people on earth! It’s the lamest excuse one can give.

The 10 minutes mantra can keep us Organized, keep our otherwise disoriented thoughts in check, Balance our life fruitfully and help us to have enough time in our hands. So follow this 10 minutes mantra and see your life turn around at a miraculous pace…..!”

Courtesy-Fb share

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Bhaja Govindam- Verse 2 with story and essence

 

Verse 2

mudha jahiihi dhanaagamatrishhnaam
kuru sadbuddhim manasi vitrishhnaam
yallabhase nijakarmopaattam
vittam tena vinodaya chittam

Bhaja Govindam Bhaja Govindam

Oh foolish one; give up the passion to possess wealth and understand the reality. Be content with what you get through your honest actions. Seek Govinda, Seek Govinda

shankara-1

Story based on Verse 2

Monkey and the peanuts

There is story about how a monkey catcher catches the monkeys. A monkey catcher saw lot of monkeys on a tree and came up with an idea how to catch those.

He bought a lot of peanuts , put  them in a long but narrow necked jar and left it below the tree. The monkeys sitting up the tree were watching all this and were waiting for the monkey catcher to leave; so that they could dip their hands into their favorite food.

monkey-and-peanut

As soon as he left; one monkey jumped down and slipped its hand through the mouth of the jar to grab the peanuts. It was happy to have so many in its hand and quickly tried to pull up its hand to eat the peanuts. Try as much as it may; it couldn’t pull its hand out. The hand had got stuck in the narrow neck of the jar.

The monkey was so attached to the peanuts which were in its closed fist,  and did not want to let go it. The monkeys greed and attachment to peanuts bound it helplessly to the jar. As it was so caught up in its attachment to the peanuts, its alertness to be on the lookout for the monkey catcher dropped. Soon the monkey catcher came happily and took the monkey away.

If only the monkey had let go of the peanuts; it would have escaped. But the attachment and greed to the peanuts did not allow it to do that and as a result it got stuck and ultimately became miserable having been caught in the hands of the monkey catcher.

Essence

Adi Shankara tells us to bring understanding and awareness in our lives; to develop love and will for detachment. One can earn money which is very essential; but earn it with honest means. Be contented with what we earn this way. One should give up the delusion, illusion and attachment towards wealth. The more we are attached and refuse to let go; we will be caught in the trap like the monkey.

It is said, “There is enough for everyone’s need but not enough for everyone’s greed”. Greed makes one earn through wrong means and not parting our wealth to help the needy. When money is earned out of love, honesty, sincerity; it is more fulfilling. So Shankara exhorts; Oh foolish mind; develop the sense of detachment and live through honest means and seek Govinda.

Further discussion

This is not only true for money but for relationships also. Parents are so attached to their children; many times they stifle the growth and progress of the very own child who they love. Attachment blinds them. Once the child has grown up; parents should learn to let go of them but always being supportive and loving. Then there will be good relationship between the parents and child. Both will have a sense of mutual respect and love rather than being burdened by too much love and possession.

For students

Story for Students

https://saibalsanskaar.wordpress.com/2014/12/16/the-poor-mans-wealth/

Students should develop the qualities of honesty and hard work. They should do their best and hope for the best. Some things are not in our control and despite our best efforts we may not get the results we expect. If we keep holding on to such situations which we cannot help; it will only lead to unhappiness. We have to learn to let go; then we have a sense of freedom and mind will be open to receive other things which may be very good for us.

For eg in case of children who are possessive of their sweets, toys, gadgets etc; they keep holding on to it without sharing with others; such children will not be able to receive anything new unless they free their hands of their possession. Similarly greed can blind us from being concerned for others; we keep storing our things and in the process we lose relationships and our happiness.

Adapted from Bhaja Govindam by Swami Sukhbodananda

 

The importance of Guru

Value- Truth

Subvalue-Wisdom, Guidance

In the early years when Swami Vivekananda first visited Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, Swami Vivekananda  asked ‘I have read the Bhagavad Gita and other scriptures several times, I lecture and give discourses on the Gita and Ramayana. Do I still need  the harbor of a saint; do I still need a guru?’

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Ramakrishna didn’t reply to Vivekananda’s question. After a few days Ramakrishna called upon Vivekananda and handed him a parcel to be delivered at a nearby village a few hours away by the sea route. Early morning the boat and sailor would be ready and all he needed to do was to go to the village and deliver the parcel to the designated person.

Vivekananda agreed and decided to start early. He found the boat and the sailor ready to put out to sea. While seated  in the boat, Vivekananda suddenly realized that he didn’t know the road to the village. He checked with the sailor  to find out if the sailor knew the way to the place, but the sailor  had no clue, either. Vivekananda decided to go back to his guru to ask him the shortest way to the village.

Upon this Ramakrishna said, ‘Narendra, this is my reply to the question you asked me when we met the first time: Today, you have the medium (the boat), you have the resource (the sailor), you have the road (the sea), you know what to do (deliver the parcel) and you also know where to go but you don’t know the way. Likewise you have read all the scriptures, and you can conduct wonderful discourses on them. However, to realize the wisdom of scriptures one needs a guru, someone who has already traversed that path so that he can guide you through the journey and encourage you to not give up.’

Learning

A teacher or a guru especially who has traversed or experienced life is the one capable of teaching and guiding us. If we find such a Guru we must hold on to Him so that we can face our life in a better and more easier manner.

Bhaja Govindam Introduction and Verse 1 with story and essence

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Composed by the great saint Sri Adi Shankaracharya, Bhaja Govindam is one of the most lucid yet insightful works of Vedanta.

It was on one of those days when Shankara and his disciples were travelling that they passed through Benaras, a holy city of India. Along the way, Shankara overheard an old pundit, scholar, memorising Panini’s grammar rules. He observed how the pundit memorised the grammar rules but missed the message of what he was studying and this inspired a masterful oration by Shankara that we call the Bhaja Govindam.

Verse 1

Bhajagovindam bhajagovindam
Govindam bhaja muudhamate
Sampraapte sannihite kaale
Nahi nahi rakshati dukrijnkarane

Bhaja Govindam Bhaja Govindam

Worship Govinda; Oh foolish mind. The learnings of grammar will not help you in your last moments of life.

Story based on Verse 1

Akbar and the Sufi Saint

 

A great Sufi fakir (a Muslim ascetic who lives solely on alms) once desired some favor from Emperor Akbar.  Akbar was the third Mughal emperor, who reigned India from 1556 to 1605.

He proceeded to the palace to meet Akbar. When he reached the palace; the emperor was offering his prayers, so the fakir waited patiently for the king to finish his prayers.  The fakir observed that Akbar was praying with his hands raised towards the heavens and pleading God for more wealth and power.  As Akbar finished his prayers and stood up, he saw the fakir going out of the room. Akbar rushed out , fell  at the feet of the Fakir and enquired about  the purpose of his visit.

The fakir said, “I came to ask something from you but when I saw you asking from the Lord, I wondered what can a beggar like you , give another one. I am a beggar, a fakir, but you are a greater beggar. I just beg for food and mundane things. But you beg for bigger things like wealth and glory.  Ultimately, we both are beggars. I would rather ask  help from  God directly,  than asking  you.”

Akbar understood and realized how poor and insecure he was; though he was an Emperor. 

Essence

Adi Shankara questions us; what is it that we are begging for? Our begging can also be foolish.

He says- fool-mudhamate; because in the very depths of devotion if one cannot discover fulfillment, then that devotion means nothing. Is our devotion an extension of a barter system with the Lord?

Adi Shankara wants us to develop devotion, void of any expectation. Love directed towards Truth is bhakti. A true devotee knows and has the experience that devotion devoid of foolish desires is security in itself.   The external objects of the world do not protect us; only true devotion protects us.

Yes, being in this world; one has to accomplish one’s material needs; but along with it true devotion is very important for one to know the difference between need and greed which causes insecurity and unhappiness throughout one’s life and also during one’s last moments.

For students

Story for Students

https://saibalsanskaar.wordpress.com/2016/06/30/a-cabbies-honesty/

Education should be for enriching life and not mere living. What is the difference? There is indeed a lot of difference. The formal or secular education can make one an intellectual, wise and full of knowledge; but is that mere information or knowledge enough? It can help one live in this material world but what about the inner world within us?

So students; along with this worldly knowledge garner the spiritual knowledge as well. This will help you to develop inner strength, realise your true strength and potential which will not only help you in this worldly life but also guide you in every step of your life ultimately making you realise who you really are?

Adapted from Bhaja Govindam by Swami Sukhbodananda

http://vedantavision.org/bhaja-govindam/bhaja-govindam/bhaja-govindam.html

 

Parental Pressure

There is a fine line between caring and caring too much. Don’t have unrealistic expectations from your child. All your joy can’t be because of your children; it’s too much burden for them to carry and it’s too disappointing for you when they falter- Sadia Saeed Raval

So true and reminder for all parents. Sharing the link

http://indiatoday.intoday.in/story/ease-off-the-pressure-sadia-saeed-raval-psychologist-mindful-spring-parenting-tips/1/760299.html

 

 

Act Right, then Claim the Fruit

 

Value- Peace

Sub value- Patience

monkey-1

A group of monkeys planted a mango garden. They planted the saplings, watered them a few days, and plucked them from off the ground to see how deep the roots had gone! They wanted them to grow fast and yield fruits, but they were unaware of the process by which alone they could get the fruits they craved for.

mango-tree

They wanted to get the results of their act immediately. They didn’t realise that lot of hard work, patience and perseverance is required to get fruits.

Learning

Everything has its time to develop and mature at the right time. We must persevere and work patiently instead of getting anxious about the result. Our duty is to do the work with full commitment and the right time we will be rewarded. Patience and perseverance goes a long way in achieving success. So let us act right and then claim the fruit. Cultivate with care and collect the harvest.

 

The Ant and the Contact Lens

Value- Faith

Sub value- Trust

climber
Brenda was almost halfway to the top of the steep granite cliff; she was standing on a ledge, taking a breather during this, her first rock climb. As she rested there, the safety rope snapped against her eye and knocked out her contact lens. ‘Great!’, she thought. ‘Here I am on a rock ledge, hundreds of feet from the bottom and hundreds of feet to the top of this cliff, and now my sight is blurry.’

She looked and looked, hoping that somehow it had landed on the ledge. But it just wasn’t there.

She felt the panic rising in her, so she began praying. She prayed for calm, and she prayed that she may find her contact lens.

When she got to the top, a friend examined her eye and her clothing for the lens, but it was not to be found. Although she was calm now that she was at the top, she was saddened because she could not clearly see across the range of mountains.
She prayed to GOD, ‘Lord, You can see all these mountains. You know every stone and leaf, and You know exactly where my contact lens is. Please help me.’

lens

Later, when they had hiked down the trail to the bottom of the cliff they met another party of climbers just starting up the face of the cliff. One of them shouted out, ‘Hey, you guys! Anybody lose a contact lens?’

Well, that would be startling enough, but you know why the climber saw it? An ant was moving slowly across a twig on the face of the rock, carrying it!

ant

The story doesn’t end there. Brenda’s father is a cartoonist. When she told him the incredible story of the ant, the prayer, and the contact lens, he drew a cartoon of an ant lugging that contact lens with the caption, ‘Lord, I don’t know why You want me to carry this thing. I can’t eat it, and it’s awfully heavy. But if this is what You want me to do, I’ll carry it for You.’

Learning

It would do all of us some good to say, ‘God, I don’t know why You want me to carry this load. I can see no good in it and it’s awfully heavy. But, if You want me to carry it, I will.’

God doesn’t call the qualified, He qualifies the called.

GOD is the source of our existence and our Savior. He keeps us functioning each and every day.  Remembering  always; “I can do all things through God which strengthens me” gives one tremendous confidence to us especially in turbulent times.

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