Are You Focusing on the Black Dot?

Are You Focusing on the Black Dot?

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Are You Focusing on the Black Dot?

Back in school, I had a history teacher whom I really hated. (But that’s not what today’s post is about.) I remember an analogy he shared during a lesson (it wasn’t even his idea too; it was one of his student’s) which stuck with me.
Consider the image below this line. What do you notice right away?
Black dot

If your answer is “the black dot,” perhaps a little bit of disdain because the dot tainted an otherwise perfectly good piece of paper, you would have answered the same as me and everyone else.

When presented with a blank paper with no specks but a dot, most of us would zoom right into the dot: even if it was at the corner of the paper. Why? Because it’s what’s “glaring” at us in the otherwise spotless surface.
Same for other images…
Black, pink, and white polka-dot butterflies
Black, pink, and white polka dot butterflies. What do you notice first?

Black polka-dot straws
Black polka-dot straws. What do you see first?
Black dot: What grabs your attention first?
Another black dot: What grabs your attention first?

While my history teacher was using this example to argue the importance of removing “black sheep” in the society (or something like that; he always had very cynical and judgmental ideas), I found the analogy interesting because it shows the average person’s tendency to focus on “imperfections” and “issues” when everything else can be perfect and going well.
(Assumption here is the black dot represents the negative stuff while the white area represents the good stuff.)

While such an attitude is helpful for pinpointing gaps/issues and solving them, it can create an unhealthy outlook in that one can become very issue-centric. So rather than consider the things that are going right and well in one’s life, one can have a tunnel vision focusing on the things that aren’t going right and well. Or rather than focus on the plethora of benefits of something, one can be hung up by one to two issues that don’t even have a significance in the long term.
For example:
You want to start a blog. There are so many merits that come with running a blog (e.g., ability to touch others lives, get your opinions heard, find your voice, improve your writing, and meet new people), but you focus on potential criticism you haven’t even attracted and let that stop you from blogging as a result.
You want to quit your day job and pursue your dreams. There are tons of successful examples/case studies of people out there living their dreams (I’m but an example) and helpful resources for you to achieve the same, but you choose to listen and be daunted by naysayers who aren’t even living the life that you want. (Shouldn’t you be listening to people who are living the life that you want rather than those who aren’t?)

Your looks: You are so beautiful with beautiful features, but instead of celebrating that, you focus on the areas of “imperfection” on your face/body: from that zit that’s only going to be there for three to four days tops, to that mole you dislike (which can well be a gorgeous beauty mark by the way), to the extra pound you gained last week because of bad eating habits, to your oily skin which can be fixed by washing your face.

Your parents: Your mom and dad are alive and you get to spend time with them; but instead of celebrating that, you get annoyed with how naggy they are, how negative they can be, and how they “mess up” your room when trying to clean up for you. Why?
Your job: You are employed with a steady pay, nice colleagues, and healthy continuous learning opportunities, but you focus on how lousy your boss is and let yourself be affected by him/her. (I had this issue before which I broke through: The Night I Cried.)
Your work: You deal with many customers and many of them are nice people, but every once in a while you have jerks who mess things up and make life difficult for you. Rather than focus on your nice and friendly customers, you let yourself be dampened by those jerks.

Criticisms: You get compliments day in and out which you don’t pay much attention to, yet when you receive an insensitive comment by someone who doesn’t even matter in your life, you can’t stop thinking about it. (On a side note, read: How to Give Constructive Criticism in 6 Steps.)

Your partner: You have a great relationship and your partner tries to be a good boy/girlfriend or husband/wife to you, but you always have things to nitpick on. Rather than celebrate his/her good qualities and things he/she is doing right, you regularly criticize his/her “bad” traits/idiosyncrasies, causing him/her to feel bad. Why?
Your life: You have a great life going ahead of you and great things to celebrate every day, but you harp on the bad stuff and regularly complain about little things that go wrong. You make it sound like your life is a complete mess, when what you are facing are no more than just first world problems.
You get the drift.
Corn

I just got corns on the soles of my feet since two days ago (and I don’t even eat corn too, #badjoke) and it’s becoming quite painful to walk: to the point where I’m limping with every step I walk. The last I counted, I had five six corn: three four on my left foot and two on my right. I’m guessing it’s due to the prolonged walking I did last week.

If you don’t know what a corn is, it’s a callus formed on your toes/feet and is caused by undue pressure or friction. Corns form when the skin tries to protect itself from pressure/rubbing. Corn looks somewhat like corn (maize), and hence the name. Picture below:
Corn on the sole of a foot

An example of what corn looks like. (Not my foot by the way.)
Instead of letting myself be bothered by this problem, I’m staying upbeat and focusing on the good things in my life:

I’m enjoying my life every day with the love of my life. (It’s November 5 today, which marks the sixth month we’ve been together!)
I love all of you great readers of PE for supporting my work and always having such positive thoughts to share. Bad eggs are always there but I don’t let myself be bothered by them, because they aren’t worth the time. Read: 9 Reasons Why Criticism Rocks (and Some of the Worst Comments I’ve Ever Received in Running my Blog)
I have great skin, save for one huge pimple on my chin now (probably due to the rojak from Sunday’s supper).

I have great health and a great body. These let me enjoy life in a wholesome manner. (My friend’s dad who died of cancer recently and it makes me more mindful of the importance of good health: not just for myself, but also my loved ones.)
I have great (future) parents-in-law and I can’t ask for more.
I’m not going to ignore this corn problem of course because I can’t walk without limping at this point (Ken and I are heading to the pharmacy later for over-the-counter medication), but I’m not going to let that dampen my days. After all, there is so much to celebrate in life every day to focus on tiny problems like that!

Update: Just bought an over-the-counter corn solution! Ken just helped me to apply that to the corn on my feet. Hope this works. 😀
Corn removal solution

Stop Focusing on the Black Dot

Instead of focusing on the black dots (the problems) in your life, here’s my challenge to you:

Recognize the white (the good things) that’s around the black dot (whatever problem you are facing). Can you do that?

Celebrate the white (the good things) vs. taking it for granted (which many of us do).
See the black dot (the problem) as it is. Don’t overtly magnify its presence, but don’t ignore it either.

Then… celebrate the black dot (the problem) too. Negative things are as important as the positive experiences in living a great life. What positives can you see in your black dot? Do you acknowledge its role in your life? What can you learn from it?

Apply these four steps and let me know how they work for you.

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कृपया अपनी फोटो DP पर लगाऐ…

हो सकता है कि कोई
आपकी पुरानी दोस्त करवाचौथ का व्रत रख रही हो।
😜😆😜😄😜😎

@mahidada @Tejaa @Smarty
@[email protected]

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You think English is easy??

1) The bandage was wound around the wound.

2) The farm was used to produce produce.

3) The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.

4) We must polish the Polish furniture..

5) He could lead if he would get the lead out.

6) The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert..

7) Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present.

8) A bass was painted on the head of the bass drum.

9) When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.

10) I did not object to the object.

11) The insurance was invalid for the invalid.

12) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row.

13) They were too close to the door to close it.

14) The buck does funny things when the does are present.

15) A seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line.

16) To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow.

17) The wind was too strong to wind the sail.

18) Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear..

19) I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.

20) How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?

@srocks

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Why vd?

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By Professor Richard Wiseman, University of Hertfordshire.

Why do some people get all the luck while others never get the breaks they deserve?
A psychologist says he has discovered the answer.

Ten years ago, I set out to examine luck. I wanted to know why some people are always in the right place at the right time, while others consistently experience ill fortune. I placed advertisements in national newspapers asking for people who felt consistently lucky or unlucky to contact me.

Hundreds of extraordinary men & women volunteered for my research & over the years, I have interviewed them, monitored their lives & had
them take part in experiments.

I carried out a simple experiment to discover whether this was due to differences in their ability to spot such opportunities. I gave both lucky and unlucky people a newspaper, and asked them to look through it & tell me how many photographs were inside. I had secretly placed a large message halfway through the newspaper saying : “Tell the experimenter you have seen this and win $50.”

This message took up half of the page & was written in type that was more than two inches high. It was staring everyone straight in the face, but the unlucky people tended to miss it & the lucky people tended to spot it.

Unlucky people are generally more tense than lucky people, and this anxiety disrupts their ability to notice the unexpected.
As a result, they miss opportunities because they are too focused on looking for something else. They go to parties’; intent on finding their perfect partner & so miss opportunities to make good friends.
They look through newspapers determined to find certain types of job advertisements & miss other types of jobs.

Lucky people are more relaxed & open, and therefore see what is there rather than just what they are looking for. My research eventually revealed that lucky people generate good fortune via four principles. They are skilled at creating & noticing chance opportunities, make lucky decisions by listening to their intuition, create self-fulfilling prophesies via positive expectations, and adopt a resilient attitude that transforms bad luck into good.

Here are Professor Wiseman’s four top tips for becoming lucky:
1) Listen to your gut instincts – they are normally right
2) Be open to new experiences and breaking Ur normal routine
3) Spend a few moments each day remembering things that went well
4) Visualize Urself being lucky before an important meeting or telephone call.
Have a Lucky day and work for it…

“The happiest people in the world are not those who have no problems, but those who learn to live with things that are less than perfect.”

" There is a great difference between “worry” & “concern”,
A worried person only sees the problem & a concerned person solves the problem..!

May luck be your side!!!

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@Alpha.Barood wrote:

You think English is easy??

1) The bandage was wound around the wound.

2) The farm was used to produce produce.

3) The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.

4) We must polish the Polish furniture..

5) He could lead if he would get the lead out.

6) The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert..

7) Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present.

8) A bass was painted on the head of the bass drum.

9) When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.

10) I did not object to the object.

11) The insurance was invalid for the invalid.

12) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row.

13) They were too close to the door to close it.

14) The buck does funny things when the does are present.

15) A seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line.

16) To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow.

17) The wind was too strong to wind the sail.

18) Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear..

19) I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.

20) How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?

@srocks


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Some One Liners to make you Smile…! Brilliant.

> Q: Can February March?
> A: No. But April May!
> Q: Did you hear about the painter who was hospitalized?
> A: Reports say it was due to too many strokes!
> Q: Have you heard the joke about the butter?
> A: I better not tell you, it might spread!
> Q: How do you know that carrots are good for your eyesight?
> A: Have you ever seen a rabbit wearing glasses?
> Q: Music Teacher: What’s your favourite musical instrument?
> A: Kid: The lunch bell!
> Q: What did the triangle say to the circle?
> A: You’re pointless!
> Q: What do you call a ghosts mom and dad?
> A: Transparents!
> Q: What do you call a group of men waiting for a haircut?
> A: A Barbercue!
> Q: What do you call a person that chops up cereal.
> A: A cereal killer!
> Q: What do you call a South American girl who is always in a hurry?
> A: Urgent Tina!
> Q: What do you call two fat people having a chat?
> A: A heavy discussion!
> Q: What kind of emotions do noses feel?
> A: Nostalgia!
> Q: What kind of shorts do clouds wear?
> A: Thunderwear!
> Q: What’s easy to get into but hard to get out of?
> A: Trouble!
> Q: Where do boats go when they get sick?
> A: The dock!
> Q: Who cleans the bottom of the ocean?
> A: A Mer-Maid!
> Q: Why can’t a leopard hide?
> A: Because he’s always spotted!
> Q: Why can’t your nose be 12 inches long?
> A: Because then it would be a foot!
> Q: Why did the barber win the race?
> A: Because he took a short cut!
> Q: Why did the boy tiptoe past the medicine cabinet?
> A: He didn’t want to wake the sleeping pills!
> Q: Why did the tomato turn red?
> A: It saw the salad dressing!
> Q: Why did the tree go to the dentist?
> A: To get a root canal!
> Q: Why don’t you see giraffes in elementary school?
> A: Because they’re all in High School!
> Q: Why was the math book sad?
> A: Because it had too many problems!

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Carry Yourself With Grace: Lessons from IBM CMO Michelle Peluso

Fifteen years ago, a devastating tragedy happened in America – 9/11. At the time, IBM’s new Chief Marketing Officer, Michelle Peluso was the CEO of Site59, a travel website. Because of 9/11, Site59’s revenue dropped approximately 95%.

At a conference I attended, Peluso spoke about the leadership lessons she learned as CEO of Site59, as well as Travelocity and Gilt.

Peluso called 9/11 a game-changer. Site59’s office was a couple blocks away from the World Trade Center. After the attack, Peluso had to call employees’ family members and tell them she didn’t know where they were. Thankfully, as she later found out, all of her employees were okay.

Peluso, however, didn’t know if Site59 would be able to stay afloat. Its revenues kept on declining, they were burning through cash, and employee morale was low. During this time, Peluso learned that she needed to face challenges head on, and that hard times count the most. She often thinks to herself, “What type of person will you be during that challenging moment?” She further noted that during these tough times, people need you to be your best, but being your best doesn’t mean you have to be perfect or you can’t ask for help.

Site59 was able to weather the storm and was eventually acquired by Travelocity. Peluso stated that one of the reasons why Site59 was able to rebound was because she was able to rely on her team, and she tried to support them in any way she could.

As Peluso’s career progressed and she led other companies, she learned the importance of grace. She stated that if you are going to be bold and be a risk taker, you are bound to fail and make mistakes along the way, which is why grace is so important. To Peluso, grace is the ability to bounce right back up, carry on, and not be too hard on yourself.

Peluso ended her talk saying, “The most profound thing about leadership is that it never ends…the best is always yet to come.”

What did you learn about yourself during a challenging time? Let me know in the comments!

#StudentVoices

Written by

Suneil Kamath

Founder-Music of the Heart, Big Idea Thinker & Doer

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Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev: Parenting involves a certain amount of discretion. There is no one standard rule for all children. Different children may need different levels of attention, expression of love, and toughness. Suppose I was standing in a coconut garden and you ask me, “How much water per plant?” I’d say, “At least 50 liters per plant.” When you go home, if you give 50 liters to your rose plant, it will die. You must see what kind of plant you have in your house and what it needs.

Tip #1: Recognize The Privilege

It is a privilege that this child – this bundle of joy – has come through you and arrived in your house. Children are not your property; they do not belong to you. Just see how to enjoy, nurture, and support them. Don’t try to make them an investment for your future.

Tip #2: Let Them Be

Let them become whatever they have to become. Don’t try to mold them according to your understanding of life. Your child need not do what you did in your life. Your child should do something that you did not even dare to think in your life. Only then will the world progress.

Tip #3: Give Them ‘True’ Love

People misunderstand that loving their children is to cater to whatever they ask for. If you get them everything they ask for, it is stupidity, isn’t it? When you are loving, you can do just whatever is needed. When you truly love someone, you are willing to be unpopular and still do what is best for them.

Tip #4: Don’t Rush Them Into Growing Up

It is very important a child remains a child; there is no hurry to make him into an adult because you can’t reverse it later. When he is a child and he behaves like a child, it’s wonderful. When he becomes an adult and behaves like a child, that’s bad. There is no hurry for a child to become an adult.

Tip #5: Make It A Time To Learn, Not To Teach

When a child comes, unknowingly you laugh, play, sing, crawl under the sofa, and do all those things that you had forgotten to do.

What do you know about life to teach your children? A few survival tricks are the only things you can teach. Please compare yourself with your child and see who is capable of more joy? Your child, isn’t it? If he knows more joy than you, who is better qualified to be a consultant about life, you or him?

When a child comes, it’s time to learn, not teach. When a child comes, unknowingly you laugh, play, sing, crawl under the sofa, and do all those things that you had forgotten to do. So it is time to learn about life.

Tip #6: Nurture Their Natural Spirituality

Children are very close to a spiritual possibility if only they are not meddled with. Generally, either the parents, teachers, society, television – somebody or the other meddles with them too much. Create an atmosphere where this meddling is minimized and a child is encouraged to grow into his intelligence rather than into your identity of religion. The child will become naturally spiritual without even knowing the word spirituality.

Tip #7: Provide A Supportive And Loving Atmosphere

If you set an example of fear and anxiety, how can you expect your children to live in joy? They will also learn the same thing. The best thing you can do is to create a joyous and loving atmosphere.

Tip #8: Maintain A Friendly Relationship

Stop imposing yourself on the child and create a strong friendship rather than being a boss. Don’t sit on a pedestal and tell the child what she should do. Place yourself below the child so that it’s easy for them to talk to you.

Tip #9: Avoid Seeking Respect

Love is what you seek with your children, isn’t it? But many parents say, “You must respect me.” Except that you came a few years early, are bigger in body, and you know a few survival tricks, in what way are you a better life than him?

Tip #10: Make Yourself Truly Attractive

If you are genuinely interested in giving your children a good upbringing, you should first transform yourself into a peaceful and loving human being.

A child is influenced by so many things – the TV, neighbors, teachers, school, and a million other things. He will go the way of whatever he finds most attractive. As a parent, you have to make yourself in a way that the most attractive thing he finds is to be with the parents. If you are a joyous, intelligent, and wonderful person, he won’t seek company anywhere else. For anything, he will come and ask you.

If you are genuinely interested in giving your children a good upbringing, you should first transform yourself into a peaceful and loving human being.

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