Love Redefined

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Do Not Be A Clog

Sending proposals, making calls, having new visitors at your work place or visiting someone’s office, making follow up calls and training your sales team on this is an essential part of any entrepreneurship venture. Every consultant and entrepreneur knows that. And it is this exercise of communicating and meeting  new people that we gain experience.

It happened on a warm sunny afternoon, when the person walked in for an interview at my organization was the same person, who almost 5 years back had rejected our proposal.

Rejection is an important part of any business development and sales activity. Out of ten businesses proposed, offers made, proposals sent, only ONE is accepted.That is a global sales ratio.  And every mature person who has to develop his business understands this. I have never gotten depressed or felt down just because a proposal sent out by me was not accepted. It is the inherent part of business, but it is the way your proposal is handled (rejected or accepted) that makes it a memorable event.

The interview triggered a series of events in my head, which I am sharing here.

Five years from now we had sent a proposal to an organization to be viewed and decided upon by CEO. We were experiencing a financial low and were quite desperate to straighten out ourselves. We really needed that business since we exactly fulfilled the requirements stated in the TORs and we had the capacity to perform as well. The proposal some how had to pass the desk of Senior Manager HR, before it had to reach the CEO.

After emailing the proposal, two days passed by and we did not hear from them. We did not even receive an acknowledgement. We touched them to find out if they had received it. We were informed that yes, they had, but being work loaded, they could not inform us. Another four days passed and we called for a follow up. We were informed by the same manager that they were yet into the process of receiving proposals from several organizations.

Another week passed by and we called back again. We were informed that an audit had been initiated owing to which they could not allocate time to view our proposal and it will take a week for the audit to close.

Another 2 weeks passed and we followed up. This time we were told that the CEO was travelling abroad and we could come back after 2 weeks.

Another follow up and we were informed that they had a visit from their QMS auditors this time and management will be busy. This will take another week.

After a week, we touched them again to find out that they will now advertise in the newspaper, since they had received not enough response from the market previously.

This continued on for about 4 months and we finally decided to not give further efforts to the organization.

A few months later I met the CEO of the same organization by chance at a professional event. We exchanged cards and after some minutes, it dawned on me that the CEO never knew about our proposal, though they wanted productivity and performance improvement analysis and work to be done at their factory, yet, he never found out that we had been following up so extensively for that.

By that time the senior manager had already left the organization or else the CEO would have asked him the reasons for not allowing our message to get through the desk. Later from several other sources, we came to know that the Senior Manager’s drawer was filled up with pending things, which were never acted upon.

And the same senior manager was standing at the door ready for the interview. Of course, being honest I did not select him, not for the reasons of any personal grievance, since I had quite forgotten him during the years passed and my resentment and anger had calmed down. I did not hire him for the reason that what if he acted like the same CLOG at our organization, that he acted some years back at his previous organization.

A few similar events occurred another 2-3 times again, which made me write this post.

Do we recognize this CLOG pattern?What is the psychology behind this?  A clog is a sticky or thick matter, that chokes up a drain, a path, a process.

Those who have worked with public sector organizations in Pakistan have experienced CLOG patterns repeatedly from executives holding offices.

Most of us have experienced this or suffered from this at some point of life or the other.

Facing a problem owing to which one cannot perform a task diligently is one thing and a habitual pattern of delaying things and procrastinating actions is another.

I will write in detail about the reasons and psychology behind the CLOG pattern as well as the “fruits” reaped from it in my next post, but here I will ask only ONE question. 

Before I ask that question, let me share an insight. We all have acted clogs at one time or the other. We are a nation deprived of training and nation building process. We are a society that has not had enough lessons learnt from its own mistakes. We are not raised as individuals to develop enough awareness about how our actions can impact on the lives of others? We are a nation that is not used to admit its mistakes. We are people who like to remain adamant on their faults and wrong behaviors. 

Before I ask that question, let me share another fact: till we learn to speak the truth about ourselves, with our own selves, we cannot rectify our errors, we cannot improve, we cannot grow. We die. 

And another fact: real development takes place when we speak the truth to ourselves and that one of the most difficult task we can undertake is to score our own selves. 

Now I challenge to ask yourself a question and rate yourself as honestly as you can from a scale of 0 to 5 (0 being lowest and 5 being the top or best score) on the five important questions. 

  1. Have you ever acted like a clog in a process?
  2. Have you ever acted out of sheer laziness or never acted at all?
  3. Have you ever delayed a necessary action without realizing how much important it could be for someone else’s life?
  4. When deciding upon things like proposals, documents to forward, emails to reply, queries to answer, do you regularly and habitually think that how much important this could be for the lives of people associated with that document?
  5. Do you practice empathy at daily decision making at work? (empathy is to think and feel how you would have acted or behaved, if something had happened to you. It is to place yourself and someone else’s and then try to know how the other person would have felt like). 

Hint: ( even some answers are asked in negative connotation, rate  high score for positive answers and low for negative)

A total score of  0 to 5 shows you have acted like a CLOG.

A total score of  10 and below shows  your require serious self improvement in this area, though still in the clog category.  

A total score of  15 shows you are doing OK.

A total score of 20 and above shows you have acted a catalyst in the process of growth and support towards others. Blessings flow towards you in return and they will keep on flowing. Even if life appears to be still, your tasks will never stop. 

The Three Phrases Often Wrongly Taken

People often take entirely wrong meanings of “be yourself” , “go with the flow” and “accept me the way I am or  take it or leave it.”

Being yourself does not mean being with your same habits. We are not our habits. Our ability to think about our habits makes us separate from them. So we can almost always change habits which are blocking us. Being yourself means to have your own belief systems, own value hierarchies that come from within; to have your own identities and sub-identities. Whosoever you are and whatsoever you want to be identified with, can get an inspiration from some one but it should not belong to someone else.

Go with the flow never means do what everyone else is doing or wear what every other person is wearing. It means to loosen up yourself as a twig flows on the tiny waves. It means to put your best effort,with your best heart, with your all energies and leave results to which they belong. God. Whatever results. Whatever the way they are thrown at you. Accept them. It is not go with the flow of people. It is go with the flow of God!

I have heard the last phrase from so many people, having one thing common in them. No one who repeatedly insisted on this phrase was ever ready to take responsibility of his/her behavior and felt that he should change it.
It was like an easy escape from working on your ownself to get rid of habits, behaviors, thinking patterns, which bothered not only them but people around them.
Genuine love confronts lack of growth and staleness. People who love you genuinely will always confront you, though there is a way to do that.
Leave it or take it the way it is an excuse, people who do not want to work hard on themselves use to counter the confrontations made upon them.

Before using these three in your life, understand what they truly mean. Your life will be far less complicated.

The Gardener’s Eye: Why People Quit?

I never for once dropped a program or a project because…
a. None or very few from the audience was there or
b. We did not get the response from market like we were expecting e.g. initial appreciation about the program was low or
c. We had issues in the beginning during its launch (issues with external people, resources or within team mates)

I always used to think:

1. What if we have not reached enough number of people?
2. What if the message reached to them is not that strong?
3. What if the environment was not right when the receiver viewed the message? (noisy work space, headache, being caught in a hurry)?
This meant, we could always take another NEXT chance? continue reading »

The Battles I Have Won

The battles I have one:

1. To be able to think best of the people, to think about not what they have done to me, neither about what they are but what they can become!

2. To still my mind, I have learned to do one thing at a time. If I am reading a book, I am reading a book. If I am taking a walk, I am taking a walk. Nothing more.

3. To work hard as if there were no God and things only depended on me and to pray as If I had done nothing and only God would deliver for me.

4. To not speak just because every one is speaking. I have learned that it is not necessary to say every thing.

5. I can love her every time as if I had met her for the first time.

6. I can focus like a child

7. To ask questions to my own self. Tough, hard questions.

8. To be honest about my emotions and to people whom they are associated, even if it is about asking to make love to.

9. I have overcome procrastination.

10. I can listen. I can really really listen now… to people, to the universe, to you.

11. And finally the greatest battle I have won over the years is to accept decisions of God.

The Right Tool To Assess People

We consciously and subconsciously assess people using our intelligence. We assess people for different reasons. We simply want to know them. We want to know beyond what they have told us about them. We want to know how good friends will they become or how well we will do at partnerships with them or will they turn out to be great spouses? continue reading »

Loving Ourselves is Valuing Ourselves To A Point Where..

We are about to drink from a public water service and a fellow near by warns us,”I have been living around for a while and I think its not fit for drinking”. continue reading »

Take Count of Your Redefining Moments

Have you ever some time looked back at your life and thought”Oh My! How much I have changed?”  Most of us have done this or thought of this often. What most of us have not done enough is to think deeply what were those moments that made us what we are today? continue reading »

Everything Lies Inside

Whatever we experience in our lives is a direct reflection of what has been going inside our minds.

Nothing Else Matters

Examine your intent of prayer, since prayers are only responded to as per your intent. Nothing else matters.

The Decision Exhaustion

Every decision takes a certain amount of energy to make. The larger the decision and its impact, the larger the emotional and mental energy it requires from us.

However, small or tiny decisions that need to be repeated again and again consume our energies and drain our will power. The decisions could be so small like resisting to leave your work chair before a task is complete or resisting an urge to check email.

Small decisions, if needed to be repeated again and again consume our will power and bring us emotional fatigue. The key to get rid of this emotional fatigue is to take an action that limits the decision.

Going offline while working on an important task relieves us from emotional fatigue, since we have eliminated (though for a short period of time) the possibility of going online.

It becomes more significant in significant decisions impacting us like leaving a job or getting out of a dead relationship. If we have decided to break up with some one, then taking a similar action like asking for announcing of a divorce relieves us from emotional fatigue.

Taking actions to support such decisions like putting constraints on ourselves involves love. We do not want to let ourselves suffer without a cause worthy of it.

Start loving yourself truly. If you have decided to focus on work, go offline. If you have decided to end a dead relationship, get a divorce. If you have decided to start your business, quit your job.

Take the plunge. Dive in the unknown realm of what is coming up next. Trust your future. Trust the hand that writes that future. Act with love. You will be handled with love.