Five Things To Know About Making Hard Choices

Head Vs Heart

It is not uncommon to find ourselves in a situation where our heart tugs in one direction while our head pulls us in another. This becomes even more difficult when the risk and uncertainty is high. How do you make hard choices? Here are five things to know:

1. Clear mind is critical: The first prerequisite of decision-making is to have a clear mind. When emotions are running high it is time to step back and calm down first. Anger, fear, grief, greed, jealousy, hate, ambition, and other emotions prevent clear thinking. Do yoga, meditation, and breathing exercises for a few days or weeks to calm down and think through your options.

2. No decision is also a decision: Know that not deciding and procrastinating is also a decision. Sometimes we have to choose between unpleasant choices. Rather than taking an unpleasant decision we choose to do nothing, which could be the worst decision.

3. Know difference between risk, uncertainty, and ambiguity: Risk is the probability of something unpleasant happening. When the probability is high we say that risk his high. But if probability is unknown then we have uncertainty. Sometimes the situation is so murky that it is impossible to even determine possible outcomes, let alone figure out their probability. This is ambiguity. Before taking a decision know your situation clearly: Are the possible outcomes known? Do you know the rough probability of each outcome?

4. Talk it through: It is extremely important that you talk about your situation with friends, mentors, family, and colleagues. Do not be afraid to take people into confidence and discuss your situation. You may discover new options that you never knew existed. You may be overestimating the risks of some options. Some risks may have workarounds that you did not know about. Remember the other person sees the situation more clearly as they do not have the emotional involvement you do, and may have more experience.

5. Can you hedge your bet? Not every decision is an “either/or”. Sometimes you can go in two paths simultaneously. You may work on building passive streams of income full time while you work on your passion part time for example. Sometimes the best choice may be to begin work to open up new paths and choices.

If the decision is important, then you may want to write things down: What are the choices? What are the unknowns? How do you plan to mitigate risks for each choice? (Even the ones you are not gung-ho about) What are the timelines? In which direction is your heart pulling you? What happens if things don’t work out? What are the worst-case scenarios? Write things down, discuss things, revise your document and read and reread it till you understand all aspects of your situation. Sometimes the heart may be pulling you along in the right direction after all. It may be that the head may need a bit convincing and a bit of a nudge by mitigating some of the risks. Or sometimes the head may force you to think through your options and delay the call of your heart for now.

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Credits:This has been written by Raj Shah and edited by Ketna Shah.

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I Talk To Strangers!

How do you make new friends if you are reluctant to talk to strangers? Robbie Stokes took this compelling thought and turned it into a movement. He sold everything he had, packed his suitcases, and off he went to distant countries to put his idea into practice. Robbie’s life is considerably enriched by the new connections he has forged. All he asks is that we too do the same. Are you ready?

Related: I Talk To Strangers Web-site

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The Stream Of Life

The Stream Of Life

The same stream of life that runs through my veins night and day runs through the world and dances in rhythmic measures.

It is the same life that shoots in joy through the dust of the earth in numberless blades of grass and breaks into tumultuous waves of leaves and flowers.

It is the same life that is rocked in the ocean-cradle of birth and of death, in ebb and in flow.

I feel my limbs are made glorious by the touch of this world of life.

And my pride is from the life-throb of ages dancing in my blood this moment.

– Rabindranath Tagore

Rabindranath Tagore was the first non-European to win the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1913. He was a poet, mystic, author, playwright, songwriter, artist, educator, freedom fighter, and an intellectual stalwart who shaped the destiny of an entire subcontinent.

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Five Secrets Of Long Term Weight Loss

Long Term Weight Loss

After going through multiple yo-yo weight loss cycles most people wonder what are they doing wrong. Is there a sure way to reduce weight long term? Most weight loss systems focus on short-term to give immediate results. Now you will hear for the first time what makes the weight loss stick long term:

1. Only short term weight loss controlled by calories: We have all been ingrained with the logic of “diet and exercise” that we take it for granted. But nobody told us that the ‘diet and exercise’ mantra works only in the short term. Scientists have found with experiments on rats that when they surgically remove or add fat, the rats regain the former weight in a few months. This indicates that we have a “set weight” that our system converges to. All the dieting we do cannot change our weight long term unless the “set weight” is changed. This is why in the long run we return to our set weight. We have been focusing on the wrong thing. Instead of focusing on our set weight, we have been focusing on Calories.

2. Long term weight loss controlled by “set weight”: Our set weight is like an inner thermostat that regulates our weight. Just like the thermostat regulates the temperature within a house. If we reduce calories intake it correspondingly reduces our metabolism so that we revert to our set weight. If we burn more calories then it increases our hunger. If we force ourselves to both burn more calories and eat less, our weight will go down in the short term. But the more it diverges from our set weight, the more pressure we feel. Eventually the set weight wins and we find ourselves where we started. But there is no need to feel discouraged. The set weight can be changed, and when we do that our weight automatically adjusts. Just like when we change the thermostat settings, the temperature of the home adjusts accordingly. The trick is to focus on the set weight and next three bullets show us how.

3. Set weight depends on quality rather than quantity of calories: What we eat is more important than how much we eat. This is because the food we eat has an impact on our hormones and these in turn control how much we eat and our set weight:

  • The number one enemy that drives our set weight is sugar. If we want to reduce our set weight we must abstain from all foods that have added sugar and are over processed.
  • In addition we must avoid fried foods and glazed foods as these results in chemical reactions in food known as “Glycation”. The results of these reactions are chemicals that gum up our system and cause our set point weight to rise.
  • We must also avoid foods that we are allergic to as this cause an inflammatory response in our body that also impacts our set weight.
  • Another problem area is meat, fish, and dairy that comes from grain fed source or if hormones are used in its production. Such food alters our internal hormone balance or causes inflammation in our body. The net result of this is that our set weight inches higher.

4. Stress is the biggest driver of set weight: Stress has a big impact on our internal hormones and these in turn drive our set weight. This is why going hungry is never a good idea if you want long-term weight loss. This actually increases the set point weight and causes long-term weight gain. Yoga, breathing exercises (Pranayama), and meditation are the best tools we have to control stress. If we do these on a regular and sustained basis, our set weight reduces and eventually we find that fat in our body melts away. Our weight reduces in a healthy manner that is sustained long term.

5. Sleep is important for weight loss: It is important to get 7 to 10 hours of restful sleep. Lack of sleep upsets our internal hormonal balance and causes our set weight to rise. If you are concerned about your weight then you must make sure that your are getting at least 7 hours of restful sleep each night.

The message for long term weight loss is different from the one for short term weight loss. It is important to understand the distinction. For short term weight loss diet and exercise are key. For long term weight loss quality of food, stress reduction, and enough sleep are important. Once we know what to focus on the rest should be easy!

Related: Six Things To Know About Dieting And Weight Loss

Credits:This has been written by Raj Shah and edited by Ketna Shah.

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Being Rich Is About How Much You Give!

An extrordinary story of a young man who resented his father all his life, only to discover his extraordinary qualities after his passing. This is a story about giving and selfless actions. But it is also a story about judgment. Aren’t we sometimes too harsh to judge those around us?

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