Steve Jobs – An Inspiration

I am no Apple fanboy, but I absolutely am inspired by the visionary behind Apple’s crowning glories – Steve Jobs. Apple’s co-founder Steve Jobs’ death is saddening. But the legacy he has left behind will live forever. Every product  – right from the Macintosh computers to the revolutionary iPod – that Apple has brought out in the market has absolutely changed the market, and in no small measure. With the introduction of each product, Apple has made the competition look way far behind. Of course, the phenomenal success cannot be alluded to one man, but what is a team without a visionary leader?

Life has its ways and everything that happens, happens for a reason – sometimes we are able to comprehend it and sometimes we cannot. And that’s exactly what we go through when someone close to us dies.

The news of Steve Jobs’ death brought a very concrete thought in my mind – no matter how successful we are, no matter what we have done or what we have not done, no matter the kind of deeds we did – one day or another we will have to die. Success, money or power cannot keep us alive forever. So, the only right thing to do is to make each moment of our life count – in whatever way possible.

Death is a certainty. The time and day of death, no one knows. The only thing we can do with certainty is to live an exemplary life, a life that will make a difference to the world in a way the world will remember us for generations. That’s the kind of legacy Steve Jobs has left behind. He may be dead, but his vision and the contribution he has made to the modern technology can never be ignored.

I am sure he’d have had several more ideas that he would have loved to materialize. But he certainly would have been proud of himself for the kind of life he has lived. His life had a purpose, he had passion and he dedicated his life to his passion. What more could one ask for? And for all that came out from his passion and dedication, the world is only thankful.

Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara – Lessons Learnt from the Movie

Disclaimer: This is not a review of the movie “Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara.”

Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (ZNMD) is a refreshing movie. It’s an enjoyable movie that throws you back to your college/bachelorhood days. That’s not the only reason this movie works for me. This movie has some inspiring moments – moments that make you think and analyze if this is what you want in your life.

Three Inspirations from the Movie

1. Dare or Die in Fear

The group of three friends decide to take on the trip of their lifetime; they decide to take up on an adventure sport of their choice turn by turn. The sport that one guy picks is a surprise for the other two, and they have to partake in the dare no matter what. They experience deep sea diving, sky diving and running of the bulls. Each game that they try, tests their deepest fears.

The Lesson: We can’t t experience the magic of life if we stay boxed in fears. Fear in any form, be it fear of heights, fear of water, fear of dark, fear of failure or fear of losing someone, is only detrimental to our progress in life. The only way to remove the fear is to indulge in the activity that we fear the most. In the movie, the guy who is petrified of deep sea diving fears it only until he actually does it. Once he takes the plunge, he is transformed and feels that it was the best experience of his life.

2. If Tomorrow Never Comes

One of the protagonists, Arjun (played by Hrithik) has a motto – work, work and work, make tons of money and retire at the age of forty. Purpose? So he could enjoy his life after 40 in financial freedom. In a casual conversation with his diving instructor, he realizes that there’s no surety that he’d live up to the age of forty. All his adult life, he’d been slogging hard so he could live happily after forty. However, he realizes, happiness is in living today.

The Lesson: The sooner we realize that life is not in chasing success, but in making the most of today, the happier our lives can become. What’s the point of making money at the cost of relationships? What’s the point of fame at the cost of character? What’s the point of comfort and luxury at the cost of an unhealthy body? Absolutely nothing. The only way to live this life is to make every moment of today count. The today’s that we waste will have a huge negative bearing on our tomorrow’s.

3. Live your Life

The most emphatic point of the movie reveals itself at the climax. The protagonists are in the last leg of their adventure and its a dare that they are not sure they would survive. They decide to participate in “running of bulls” game (encierro in Spanish), where the participants run in front of a group of bulls let lose. And that’s when the threesome vouch to do something they were evading all their lives.

The Lesson: Life is unpredictable. You never know if you’re going to wake up to see another tomorrow. Why leave life’s important decisions to tomorrow? Why procrastinate? What has to be done has to be done. Then why not today! Why waste time thinking, planning and fearing the what if’s. Coz Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara – You won’t get to live this life again!

Lessons from the Movie “The King’s Speech”

 

Disclaimer: This is not  a movie review of The King’s Speech. This post discusses the positive thoughts that the movie inspired in me.

In a world where people start judging someone by what the person wears, how she behaves and how he talks, imagine the plight of a person with speech impairment. His problem is even more complex if he is the King of the country. This movie has some inspiring moments, some of which are discussed below.

1. Perseverance – The movie shows what a person can achieve with Perseverance. The more and more the protagonist King George VI practices the right way of speech, the more confident he becomes. The more that he learns and practices the right speech methods, the more he unlearns the methods that are not good for him. There’s so much that can be learned from this single aspect of the movie.

The Lesson
: It reiterates, in a compelling manner, the age-old saying “Try, try, try – until you succeed.”

2. Support – The protagonist’s wife is his sole pillar of strength. Her unconditional support and faith in her husband is inspiring. The wife’s acts and gestures clearly show what faith and support can do to a person. When you lose faith in your very self, and someone else relentlessly works towards reinstating that confidence in you, it changes your world for ever, for the better. If the protagonist did not have the support that he received from his better half, he might not have turned into what he went on to become, given that he was already devastated and low on self-confidence.

The Lesson
: When you are on the brink of giving up by virtue of losing faith in yourself, the faith another person has in you can turnaround your life. It can re-kindle your confidence, it can give you the energy to fight back with vigor, and it can do some many more things that you might never have thought you could do.

3. Unconditional Love – This is a tad related to the above point, but still worth a mention.  Where his very own sibling and peers would make a joke of the protagonist, here came a woman into his life who remains by him at every crucial moment of his life. That, someone can do, only from the seat of unconditional love – love that has no formalities, no clauses and no rules.

The Lesson: You don’t have to be related by blood to love unconditionally. Love is love – it has no set parameters or boundaries.

4. Self-fulfilling prophecies – The protagonist, somewhere at the age of five, faces situations that go on to make him speech impaired. As he grows, he makes himself believe that his speech difficulties cannot be cured. And that’s the very belief he holds every time he meets a new doctor. The movie is a great example of how self fulfilling prophecies can destroy a man. And when those self fulfilling prophecies are your own thoughts, something needs to be done immediately. And when the protagonist realizes that his speech impairment is more in his mind than a fact, he comes out victorious.

The Lesson: Your thoughts can either make you or break you. If you believe you can’t do it, you won’t and if you believe you can do it, you will.

    Lessons from the Movie “Tanu weds Manu”

    A disclaimer: This is not  a movie review. This post discusses some good thoughts that one can take home from this movie.

    Although, there’s nothing new about the story of Tanu weds Manu, the movie is filled with feel-good moments. Its a love story laced with liberal doses of humor (at least in the first half) and there’s a lot that I took back home after the movie.

    1. Unconditional love – The hero is the epitome of unconditional love. He accepts the girl for what she is, the way she is without expecting her to change. The girl is a rebel of sorts and does not like things being imposed on her. The girl has a boyfriend when the protagonist falls in love, so he (the protagonist) just steps aside. He in fact goes on to help her marry the boy when she asks for help. The protagonist falls in love with the girl the moment he sees her. Although I don’t believe in love-at-first-sight, I do like the fact that once the guy has fallen for the girl, his love for her does not change no matter how the girl is. That’s unconditional love.

    2. Friendship – Both the main protagonists of the movie have great buddies with who they can share things with and who shower them with their wisdom (asked or unasked). Good, genuine friends are the best things that can happen to anyone. The friendships portrayed in the movie are almost taken from real life. Hence, there were a lot of emotions and moments I could relate to.

    3. Down to earth – The guy is simple, loves classic songs, respects his parents, knows the difference between right and wrong and sticks to them (at least most of the times – except at one point where he does a little thing intentionally so the girl does not get married to her boyfriend – which again is a matter of the heart more than anything).

    4. Realistic humor – Humor that is natural and is invoked from realistic circumstances is a turn-on for most people if not all. Nothing slapstick, no PJs, and no comedy of errors. Most humorous moments are ones that you and I would experience in a daily life – when with the family and friends. The humor in the movie was a real breath of fresh air.

    6 Things that will Never Lose Value

    Recently I read a post by a friend that talks about how the law of diminishing returns does not necessarily apply to all the things. He then enumerates some things that will never lose value from his perspective. Inspired by his thoughts, I will here enumerate a few things that will never lose value in my life.

    1. People with a positive attitude – Who doesn’t love the company of people who can rub on you some of their positivity? They are very refreshing and addictive. Right from the way they think to the way they behave, every action of theirs is worth learning from. Children are the most positive of all people. They just love the way they are, oblivious of others and what they think. If only all of us could retain that child like exuberance, innocence and energy, the world would be a lot different. The existence of positive people keeps that hope alive.
    2. People with who you can be yourself without any pretensions This is a personality trait that is rare and very valuable and is certainly something that will never lose value for me. Although being yourself is a trait that should come from within, there are only a fair few people in everyone’s life that we are comfortable with. A friend, a sibling, a parent, a colleague – it could be anyone. Anyone with who you are so comfortable that you can speak your mind without worrying that the other person would mistake you – how liberating is that! I cherish such people in my life and can’t thank God enough for bringing such souls in my life.
    3. Seeing the twinkle in the eyes of your parents – Nothing beats making your parents proud. You don’t have to become a billionaire to make your parents proud. If a person can live a life as a good human being, if one can stick to the good values that her parents have instilled in her, and if a person can make a positive difference to even one life, I’m sure any parent would be as proud as when you hit the milestones in the realm of materialism.
    4. Listening to your favorite songs – I just love listening to calming and soothing songs. No matter how many times I listen to the same song, I never tire. That’s the magic of songs that you really love listening to. They are a great companion as they they calm you, energize you, and mesmerize you.
    5. Holding your partner’s hands – There’s a lot that can be communicated by holding my partner’s hands without having to utter even a word. It is almost like meditation. For me, it would never lose value no matter how many times I hold my partner’s hand.
    6. Watching your child grow – Ever since my son has entered my life, my life has never been the same – every day has been fascinating, inspiring and filled with love. I just can’t forget the moment he entered this world and can’t forget the cherished memories that we have together created. I love watching him be himself as he learns newer and newer things by the day.

    So what are the things that never lose value for you? Feel free to share your thoughts!

    Love life by Living it, and Live life by Loving it!

    Yesterday, I had a fabulous realization that manifested in the form of a thought – “Love life by Living it, and Live life by Loving it!” I instantly shared it as a facebook status. However, I realized there’s  much more to this line than just being a facebook status.

    So what exactly does loving one’s life mean? And how exactly does loving one’s life count as have having lived it and not any other way? This can be explained by understanding the two main pillars that comprise that quote .

    Love Love starts with my own self. If I can’t love myself, I can’t love anyone else. When a person can’t love his own self the way he is, there’s no way he can love others the way they are. Loving one’s self is not about staring the mirror all day in self-praise; that’s vanity. Loving the self is about knowing your good and bad; its about accepting your flaws and striving to become a better person;  its about sticking to the values that one holds no matter what. From acceptance comes love and from love grows self-esteem, in which rests the seed of confidence. And I don’t have to add what confidence (not over-confidence) can do to a person’s life.

    Life – Life in its basic sense is signified by the mechanism of the beating heart. Until the heart beats, the person lives in the physical reality. However, there’s much more to life than just the beating heart. For me, I have lived my life if I can say yes to the following questions:

    1. Are my days filled by doing things that I am most passionate about?
    2. Have I made some positive contribution to the betterment of even ONE life in any way?
    3. Have I made whole-hearted efforts to become a  better person?

    If the answer to all these questions is in the affirmative, it signifies that I have truly lived my life.

    So I love myself and I am living in the true sense. Is that all there is to it? Well, absolutely. If I have lived every moment of my life by filling each day with love (for the self and others), passion (towards what I like doing the most)  empathy (self-explanatory), and many other such positive virtues, I have truly loved this life. And when I love my life, only then am I living it!!!

    So what do you think? Is there anything that can be added here? Feel free to let me know.

    -Wishing you a loving day ahead!
    Raj

    Action and Reaction – The Way of Life

    We have always heard things like “We get what we give…”, “If we do bad deeds, we would have to face the consequences…” and so on and so forth.

    So where am I getting at? Well, if every action had an equal and opposite reaction, I wonder when I express hatred to someone, would I experience love in return for my action? Not at all. The reaction could be anything, but certainly not positive. So if I have negative feelings for someone, it is almost always possible that the other person will reciprocate the feeling.

    On the other hand, if I expressed love (to a friend, a dear one, parents…) for someone, a third person might not like it and I might become a target of that person’s emotions (jealousy, ego, etc). In such a scenario, your action got an equal and opposite reaction from a 3rd party! Sounds funny right? But if given a serious thought, that’s the reality.

    No matter what you do, no matter how good you are as a person, there are always people who I like to call the negativity seekers. There’s a special term dedicated to such characters – energy suckers! No matter how good a deed you do, either their ego or their pessimistic nature makes them take a dig at you (either in front of your – or behind your back – which is more often the case)! There’s really nothing much you can do here, can you? The best way is to IGNORE the noise and focus on the MUSIC!

    That’s what I do, and it works. If you had to keep thinking about what such people think of you, or what they said about you, just imagine the things you miss out on! They suck your energy with their negative vibes, and you sooner than later fall in their trap! In turn, you lose your peace.

    So just ignore the NOISE and focus on the MUSIC and stay tuned with the rhythm of your life.

    Here’s to life
    –Raj