Sunday, 27 December 2015

‘Reclaim, Reboot, Reset’ – 10 ways you can make your vacation memorable

Ever thought about that customary New Year vacation we’ve always had? Probably, the one, to make family feel happy about, as a ritual? Family and friends, Late night parties, getting up tired and late on day one of the new year, many with a ‘spirited’ hangover, and beginning office with regret and remorse. How does it sound to consider building a vacation calendar this time? Here are 10 points for you to contemplate on;


  1. Switch off all communication devices and commit to personal time, fully. Irrespective of the place, venue or celebration theme, mails, phones and text messages shall keep you in the world you always wanted to leave behind for couple of days.
  2. Commit fully to family, friends; Play with kids, do silly things as you did when you were a child, shop for things you rarely or never would, for fun (Memorabilia, souvenirs, collectibles), crack jokes, unshackle yourself from timelines and schedules. Reclaim your original self, free from worldly encumbrances.
  3. Carry a list of those you missed connecting in routine. Relatives, old friends, and those you would love bridging with. Apologize for the gap and express that you have them in your ‘special list’.
  4. Indulge in moderation; it is great to be freaking out while on a break, it may be a prudent to savour the holiday more holistically than eating too much, pub-crawling or killing sleep/rest.
  5. Build ‘Experiences’; Do a few things you never did. A hiking/trekking, scuba, Para-sail, fishing, exploring local cuisine or market, or, a bout of wine tasting are fewer experiences you may like to carry back for a lifetime.
  6. Spending time with spouse; the closest for nearly everyone are their spouses, the relationship that suffers the most because it gets taken for granted. Communicate with warmth, take a long walk, talk about future and express how the relationship matters to you. This helps healing many scars in the relationship and restores it for long.
  7. Allocate time for ‘Yourself’; allow yourself a quite morning walk, meditate, sit in solitude, see yourself transiting across times mindfully. Do a recap on all the goals you set for yourself and how are you progressing. Think about tweaking, redefining or re-setting the goals as you may wish. Mull over what needs to be changed if you were to reach them. These may not be essentially short term goals like ‘What next Monday after vacation’, or a ‘sales or financial target’, but questions on direction, purpose, sustainability, longevity and relevance of life goals.
  8. A writing pad and a pen may be your best friends on vacation. Write down every morning and evening, your experiences, learning, feelings and all, that made it happen. Think and write about the areas you may need support and resources to sustain it long after the vacation is over.
  9. Commit to a more human change; towards your key goals, decide on, what you would like to ‘realistically’ commit to. Keep changes to a threshold level even if they are baby steps towards your long term goals. For instance ‘Health consciousness’  could be a long term goal while ‘5% weight loss every quarter’ could be a medium term goal, while ‘eating right’/ ‘walking daily’ or ‘de-stressing’, could be a subconsciously pursued daily goal. Resolve to the goal and maintain tenacity while appreciating that the effort is human, and is bound to face distractions initially.
  10. Commit to reward yourself; pamper and lure yourself with a reward, if you made your goals happen. After all, attaining those milestones is no less than ‘great performance’ and deserves an incentive the way it happened at office. The difference is, you would thank your ‘being’ and ‘connect’ more with yourself and the spirit.


In this journey called life, there is a definitive need to re-booting oneself in all aspects, be it emotionally, physical, spiritual, family and relationships. So this time while you may be planning your vacation, ensure you make it a memorable one, the one that helps you come back and take it on with positivity and purpose. So, here is wishing you a very joyful holiday and best wishes for the  New Year 2016 !!


Anything you may want to reflect,opine or voice upon, please visit or write to to help yourself with a professional coach who will help you chart your course.

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Beyond work and Life, it’s about being ‘Alive’!!

Many of my clients have this common expression about feeling choked with work occupying on their mind all the time. The most common symptoms described are neglecting health, negativity, low self-esteem, caught up in comparison, relationship and loss of purpose.


Many of us tend to trivialize our most loved pursuits that they have been passionate or happy about, eventually learn to live without them, while pursuing the worldly, yet undesired. Over years, we develop comfort with chaos and ‘noise’, and begin ‘labeling’ it as ‘lifestyle’, till it begins to hurt and we stray on innate, latent life goals. What begins as excitement, dithers over time and rational prevails. The void pushes one to high levels of anxiety, fear, uncertainty and conflicts. ‘Glorification’ of ‘busy’ becomes unproductive.


Work and Life can’t exist in isolation, at least over long time. The justification of not ‘living’ holistically may be self-defeating. By ‘Life’, I mean having fewer or many friends, great family life, sufficient recreation, prudent lifestyle and responsibility for actions, high awareness of self and environment, a happy being, positive influences, well balanced priorities and time for everything. It not just about life, it is about being alive, being excited for things beyond the obvious. Sounds like little too much?


This isn’t esoteric or utopian at all, though fewer people achieve this over time with conscious effort and mindfulness, crossing short term blocks of cynicism, doubt, fear or overconfidence. I, for one, know some real life heroes, a successful senior executive who has time for health, relationships, and spirituality and he goes out of the way to attain this balance. Another entrepreneur that I work with, is actively managing business, yet practicing detachment, and building succession over time, breaking barriers, and detaching from past. A doctor, who has ambitious goals in philanthropy after 23 years of successful professional success, and has committed time to it every day. If real life heroes fail to inspire, consider Liam Neeson, the lead in French blockbuster ‘Taken’, who signed up this movie only for his passion to live and see France, and learn Karate for three months.


Work and Life are not metaphors of conflicting facets of life, they co-exist, and complement each other. After all, a happy life is all about being holistic.


Visit or write to about your experiences, or your goals.

Thursday, 3 December 2015

Here is why accountability works

Raj (Name changed) started his career more than two decades ago as a trainee with a large company. Having achieved above average growth with his hard work and performance, he climbed up the ladder up to a leadership role with a large corporate house.


This is where the headwinds and tailwinds started, and a fairly decent performer in Raj began to shake up. Having been comfortable with organic growth, and being at right place at right time never germinated an urge to fortify his skills, or to learn/develop a few other genres that have been his latent talents, and, above all, his longing passion that remained subdued under his material pursuits. When I first met up with him, he was neck deep in frustration and negativity, poor emotional quotient and sensitivity towards people around him.


It did not surprise me when I heard from him about high attrition in his team, lack of trust with supervisors, and insecurity that kept him cocooned for a while. He had issues with irregular/stressed lifestyle, health and finances. One thing that I could see as his strength was his determination to come out of this cobweb, by accepting accountability for his actions. It was about 8-10 sessions later that he regained control, and has already begun preparing for his next big pursuit.


It does feel very lonely on top, but with a supportive coach under an accountable relationship, it is possible to create much more life than we live, break barriers of limitations, fears or perceptual blocks. As I write this, Raj heads operations of a pharmaceutical company.


Jatin (Name changed) is an entrepreneur who began his business with hopes and dreams more than a decade ago. Having seen upswings and downturns of the market and business, he was in delirium on many issues relating to work life balance, business scale, efficiencies, business structuring, mitigation, playing to, or, contra to markets. His education that culminated long ago hardly helped as he was in business poles apart from what he was qualified for. In the midst of uncertainty; he struggled for a while to pursue his business goals.


Having worked with him over last six months, there is some visibility on the way forward, and we are closely working to build a strong succession plan, his personal efficiency and holistic lifestyle, competencies and diversity in business. He does acknowledge that the risks with entrepreneurs is very high, and success depends on his ability to cognitively build on his journey, adapt to environmental changes and operate with deep sense of balance and detachment.


It is for a variety of reasons, people ignore early signals, or keep procrastinating till the point of no return. As experiences become dysfunctional, creating patterns or limiting behaviours, it may be a good idea to deal with them head on, and achieve fulfilment in one’s life pursuits.


Do write to if you have a story to share or if you are looking out for a supportive coach to hold you through transition. Visit

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Mindfulness – Attain your homeostasis

We are born alike, but each one of us is different. We have inherited legacies of social, educational, family, cultural and racial diversity, while the other part is developed over time and experience. As a part of my coaching practice, I get a chance to meet individuals with megalomania of financial, professional, and material success, and on the other hand, depression from social, health, spiritual, family and efficiency failures.


Having had intense, deep conversations with my clients around the subject, I realized that each one of us has his own version and scale of equilibrium, and all of us explore it dynamically with many moving parts around our lives. The tailwinds of Influences, stereotypes, cloning, group-think and conflicts distract and push people off-track from their life pursuits.  


Learning and practicing mindfulness keeps us from drifting away from our state of homeostasis. It is about being in the moment, and living through not just external, but even internal distractors. Those who master it, are more likely to stay on course, successfully reaching self-defined destinations. It is this homeostasis that helps fearlessly pursuing dreams and goals, and living a life to the fullest potential. A coach is what it takes to discover, explore and reinvent, a new you.


Write to  or visit  if you are seeking an accountable relationship to help propel yourself to the next orbit.