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7 Easy Ways to Improve a Bad Day


Don't let a bad morning ruin your entire day. Use these mental tricks to change your momentum.

Had a lousy morning? Things looking grim?
Not to worry. The rest of your day need not be a disaster. It can in fact become one of your best, providing you take these simple steps:

1. Remember that the past does not equal the future.

There is no such thing as a "run of bad luck." The reason people believe such nonsense is that the human brain creates patterns out of random events and remembers the events that fit the pattern.

2. Refuse to make self-fulfilling prophesies. 

If you believe the rest of your day will be as challenging as what's already happened, then rest assured: You'll end up doing something (or saying) something that will make sure that your prediction comes true.

3. Get a sense of proportion.

Think about the big picture: Unless something life-changing has happened (like the death of a loved one), chances are that in two weeks, you'll have forgotten completely about whatever it was that has your shorts in a twist today.

4. Change your threshold for "good" and "bad."

Decide that a good day is any day that you're above ground. Similarly, decide that a bad day is when somebody steals your car and drives it into the ocean. Those types of definitions make it easy to be happy–and difficult to be sad.

5. Improve your body chemistry.

Your body and brain are in a feedback loop: A bad mood makes you tired, which makes your mood worse, and so forth. Interrupt the pattern by getting up and moving around.  Take a walk or eat something healthy.

6. Focus on what's going well.

The primary reason you're convinced it's a bad day is that you're focusing on whatever went wrong. However, for everything going badly, there are probably dozens of things going well.  Make list, and post it where it's visible.

7. Expect something wondrous.

Just as an attitude of doom and gloom makes you see more problems, facing the future with a sense of wonder makes you alive to all sorts of wonderful things that are going on, right now, everywhere around you

Source: Inc
Junaid Tahir 

Story: The Hardworking Father




Father was a hardworking man who delivered bread as a living to support his wife and three children. He spent all his evenings after work attending classes, hoping to improve himself so that he could one day find a better paying job. Except for Sundays, Father hardly ate a meal together with his family. He worked and studied very hard because he wanted to provide his family with the best money could buy.

Whenever the family complained that he was not spending enough time with them, he reasoned that he was doing all this for them. But he often yearned to spend more time with his family.

The day came when the examination results were announced. To his joy, Father passed, and with distinctions too! Soon after, he was offered a good job as a senior supervisor which paid handsomely.

Like a dream come true, Father could now afford to provide his family with life’s little luxuries like nice clothing, fine food and vacation abroad.

However, the family still did not get to see father for most of the week. He continued to work very hard, hoping to be promoted to the position of manager. In fact, to make himself a worthily candidate for the promotion, he enrolled for another course in the open university.

Again, whenever the family complained that he was not spending enough time with them, he reasoned that he was doing all this for them. But he often yearned to spend more time with his family.

Father’s hard work paid off and he was promoted. Jubilantly, he decided to hire a maid to relieve his wife from her domestic tasks. He also felt that their three-room flat was no longer big enough, it would be nice for his family to be able to enjoy the facilities and comfort of a condominium. Having experienced the rewards of his hard work many times before, Father resolved to further his studies and work at being promoted again. The family still did not get to see much of him. In fact, sometimes Father had to work on Sundays entertaining clients. Again, whenever the family complained that he was not spending enough time with them, he reasoned that he was doing all this for them. But he often yearned to spend more time with his family.

As expected, Father’s hard work paid off again and he bought a beautiful condominium overlooking the coast of Singapore. On the first Sunday evening at their new home, Father declared to his family that he decided not to take anymore courses or pursue any more promotions. From then on he was going to devote more time to his family.

Father did not wake up the next day.
Do you spend enough Quality Time with your Family?

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Story for Parents/Kids: The Old Zebra and Jackal




In our story, the vulture and the jackal together followed the trail of an old weak zebra. They were betting:
“It will be today,” said the jackal.
“It will be tomorrow,” said the vulture.
“Either way we’ll feast for a month,” concluded the jackal.
The old zebra was falling behind and the rest of the herd started walking slowly so as not to lose her.
A little zebra, granddaughter of the ill zebra, cheered her up: “Have courage, grandmother. We are nearly at the river.”
“I won’t make it,” the old zebra complained. “The sickening smell of the jackal is around me. I can feel it.”
At a distance, on guard, the jackal said to the vulture:
“The old zebra is talking about me.”
“What is she saying? Is she praising you?” questioned the bird.
“Oh yes, indeed!” answered the jackal smiling wickedly.

The zebra leaned her head against the soil, giving in. She glanced around with resignation, as if saying goodbye. That’s when she caught sight of a little cactus crowned with a violet flower, with full thick petals. She summoned her granddaughter.
“Go and pick up that flower for me. But mind the needles.

The little zebra brought her the flower between her teeth.
“Blessed flower,” the old zebra said, grinding it up slowly, and swallowing it afterwards, while her tears kept rolling down her muzzle.

“Why are you crying, grandmother?” asked her concerned granddaughter.
“Because I am happy,” answered the zebra.

Then she explained that it was a very rare flower and that it had wondrous qualities. It could give the dying a new life, it could give strength to the weak and health to the ill ones. Fortunately, she had found it when she was resigned to die.

The old zebra jumped up as if she was young. She skipped, trotted, galloped and ran so much that the little zebra could hardly keep up with her.

“Are you seeing what I am seeing?” asked the jackal very much astonished at what he, from a distance, had observed.

“I am and I can hardly believe my eyes,” said the vulture. “We’ve been tricked. This story shouldn’t end like this.

“Maybe not, but the person who wrote it had to make a choice. A happy ending for old and young zebras can’t be a happy ending for jackals and vultures.
That’s the way it is in life!


Junaid Tahir 

DIGNITY : little things that make a big difference




Whether you work in a hospital, a care home, support people living in their own homes, or attend community gatherings, it is vital that you understand why dignity is so important.

In fact, being treated with dignity is something we all want and expect. Whatever your relationship (neighbour, daughter, son, grandchild, parent, pupil, friend, work colleague or team mate), you still want to be included, listened to, and treated with respect.

Dignity is a difficult word to explain. It is about valuing individuals, showing fairness and kindness, being respectful and thoughtful, and treating everybody as a unique person, and in a way that we would want to be treated ourselves.

Situations in which you are likely to have felt great embarrassment and humiliation, forced to eat something you strongly dislike, pressed into doing something in front of a lot of people, are situations in which you may have felt bullied and powerless, and they are all examples of loss of dignity.

Also, at some point in your life, you are likely to have felt that you haven’t been listened to. Maybe you were ignored and talked over when you said you wanted to go to the pictures, and ended up having to stay at home and watching TV instead. If this was the case, you probably felt insignificant, and maybe a little worthless.

You may have been physically abused, perhaps found yourself being attacked in a pub, or were part of a road rage incident, all of which would have left you feeling terrorized, powerless and scared. These feelings aren’t good and if we have experiences like these everyday they are likely to affect our general well-being and our mental health.

Therefore, if we work with individuals who need support, be it a friend, or a relative or neighbour, it’s really important that we think about other people’s dignity and do everything that we possibly can to help them maintain it at all times.

Very few people deliberately set out to be cruel. There are, of course, some who enjoy tormenting others or abusing their power. Thankfully, though, these situations are reasonably rare and always investigated whenever cases come to light. The rest of us need to be aware that it can only take some thoughtless actions for someone’s dignity to be compromised and their confidence and self-esteem to be negatively affected. Sometimes, because we’re so busy and may not do things properly, we do not realize what effects our behaviour can have.

  • Think about a patient in a hospital who needs help to eat or drink but doesn’t get it. The meal is left on the tray and it quickly goes cold. Someone else comes around, and clears it away. How would you feel if you were the patient?
  • An older person, living on their own, needs help to get washed and dressed. Their carer, who is in a hurry, rushes through things and doesn’t give them the opportunity to do what they can. For example, they can easily rinse themselves in the shower or dry parts of the body without help, things that make them feel they aren’t totally dependent on others. The carer also decides what the clients will wear without even asking them. What would you feel if you were the clients?
  • Imagine you live in a care home and one of your fellow residents walks around terrorizing you with a walking stick in the hand. The staff seem too busy to notice and you are too timid to say anything to them. Would you like to live like this?
  • A teenager who has a learning disability is a fanatical Manchester United fan and always wears his Man United shirt. A new support worker says “I hate the Reds, they’re a rubbish team and their fans are rubbish too. In fact, I even hate the colour red.” How would you feel if you were the teenager?
  • You’re a black mother taking your son to the boy scouts, and, as you are a bit late, you park the car at a slight angle, and then quickly leave to deliver him. You return to the car and a white older man says in very loud and patronizing manner, “We don’t park cars like that in this country.” How would you feel if you were that woman?
  • Imagine you’re a wheelchair user and you turn up for a meeting in a building which isn’t wheelchair friendly, even though the person who organized the meeting knows about your disability. Would you feel valued?
  • Imagine you’re a primary school pupil and one of your friends has a violent epileptic seizure. Your teacher asks you to go next door to get help from another teacher. You do as you are told and, being a little shocked, enter the classroom without knocking. You start to explain what’s happened but the teacher stops you and angrily says “Go outside and knock before you come back in!” How would you feel and what would you do next?


In all these examples, it wouldn’t take much to change things so that everybody’s dignity was maintained. Just a bit of thought about what we say and do. After all, little things can make a big difference.

Everyone has the right to live their lives free from abuse and neglect. If we ignore the little things, situations can become much more serious, eventually leading to safeguard investigations. Nobody wants this, so it’s better to prevent them from happening.

We all have a role to play in enhancing the dignity of others including you. It’s everybody’s job and everybody’s business. Being treated with dignity is a human right, not an optional extra. Make sure that you take an active role and speak up for dignity clearly whenever you can. You have the power to make other people’s lives better.

www.cumbria.gov.uk/
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Some Quotes from my self-improvement diary




1.     Failing to plan is planning to fail.
2.    Winners don't do different things, they do things differently.
3.    Learn the wisdom of compromise, for it is better to bend a little than to break.
4.    Time management is life management so guard your time with great care
5.    You must discover that which makes us unique.
6.    We must become the change we want to see. --Mahatma Gandhi
7.    If you do everything with the feeling of happiness, there will be no task too difficult to perform."
8.    Know more than other, work more than others, expect less than others. (Three keys to success)
9.    Don't compare yourself with someone else, if you do so, you are insulting yourself.
10.  Everyone thinks to change the world but no one thinks to change himself/herself.
11.  You are today where your thoughts have brought you;  you will be tomorrow where your thoughts take you. (James Allen)
12.  Any task we approach with a negative attitude is already half lost.
13.  The impossible can always be broken down into possibilities
14.  If you always do your best you will be free from regrets
15.  Know Your G.P.M. (Goal + Plan + Measurements) - Goal: what do u want to do. Plan: how you are going to do. Measurement: what to measure when.
16.  A thousand disappointments in the past cannot equal the power of one positive action right now. Go ahead and go for it.
17.  If you've previously told yourself that it can't be done, this is the moment to change your assumption. When you can dream it, imagine it and visualize it, you can do it.
18.  Instead of making excuses, make some progress. Instead of looking back with regret, step forward with enthusiasm.
19.  If you focus too much on the past, you'll be held back by limitations that may no longer even exist. Instead, look forward with positive expectation, and you'll find yourself quickly moving in a forward direction.
20. Believing everybody is dangerous; believing nobody is very dangerous.
21.  The quality of our thoughts determines our own personal degree of happiness."
22. If you cannot bite, never show your teeth.
23. Those who think it cannot be done must get out of the way of those who think it can be done!
24. I don't need luck I have skills.
25. To have fear means, that I am danger to myself as well as to others.

How to be a better boss


Learning by example can be the best teacher of being a boss. No matter how lovely your boss was, how quirky or how cruel, she had something to teach you—how to speak to a team, how not to speak to a team and a million things in between. From micro-managers to absent managers, all bosses have room to grow and to become better bosses.


Being crystal clear


Your employees will struggle if you're not absolutely clear about what you envision and expect. What are your priorities? What do you consider a stellar job? What makes your heart sing? What makes your skin crawl?

This kind of knowledge is power for you and your team. It didn't occur to me to tell my first boss I would be late for a meeting that included company bigwigs (above him). Had I known First Boss despised being out of the loop, I would have clued him in. I failed to do so, and was taken aback by his anger. His reaction seemed out of the blue, but it was perfectly in line with his personality. Had I known, I could have avoided the erroneous conflict.
The more you communicate your wants and needs, the better equipped your employees are to deliver. When I knew my former boss cared deeply about fostering close bonds with regulars, I focused my energy on doing so. I implemented systems to give our regulars perks and extra love. This helped our business grow.

These days, I like to begin any project with a set of goals. It's easier for everyone to work effectively when they know precisely what they are working towards.



Empathizing


At a previous job, I kept trying to grab my boss's attention. I longed for a minute of her time. I wanted some direction, some instructions. I felt lost, and hoped she would hold my hand a little. She wouldn't and didn't. When I finally managed to poke into her office and ask for help (she was often nowhere to be found), she told me she'd be right back, bolted and left me waiting for her indefinitely. Oh, the awkwardness.

"She's really, really busy," my co-workers explained. I was skeptical. Too busy for five minutes for her new and eager employee?

Yes. Too busy for me! I was tempted to take it personally and sulk. But instead, I reached out to others for guidance. My boss's boss proved incredibly generous with his time and issued key advice. My colleague, too, exhibited incredible kindness. He sat with me for several hours, explaining procedures and goals and systems. He showed me around and introduced me around.

Delegate, if you need to. Say: "Bob will be explaining your role here, and getting you set up." That's fine. Her actions? Not so laudable.

I learned here that my boss was trying her best, even if it seemed odd. She was human. She had great qualities and terrible qualities, and she was working with what she had. She had her own headache-inducing pressures to contend with and her own bosses to manage.

Try to understand, likewise, what your staff is going through. What are their pressures, stressors and what is standing in their way? Everyone likes, and needs, to feel understood. A little empathy can go a long way.

Focus on solutions


My head would spin when I saw my promiscuously e-mailing boss's encyclopedia-like laundry list of worries. The cooks are noisy, and the customers are distracting! The music is too quiet! The music is too loud! The bartender is texting behind the bar! Why are we running out of bread?

What saved me, and perhaps my boss, from a nervous breakdown was to transform her concerns into concrete problems. Concrete problems have concrete solutions. For example, how can we ensure an adequate supply of bread on slow and busy nights, alike? The answer: Bake extra bread for freezing so that in an emergency, we will have an ample bread stash.

Don't waste too much energy fretting and stressing about what's very, very wrong, even (especially) if you feel imprisoned in a worry-fest. Direct your efforts instead towards making things as right as possible. Focus your demands on creating solutions, not on bemoaning everything that's not perfect.

Kick butt


The easiest, hardest, most surefire way to lead a great team is to lead by example. Knock your staff's socks off with your insight, persistence and savvy. Work hard and smart, and work some more.

If your people know what you want and what you're all about, if you are forgiving—or at least aware—of everyone's challenges, if you are ready to focus on building instead of wallowing in the rubble, go for it. Blow 'em away. Shine in the light of your talents and accomplish big things. Your staff will love you and respect you and follow you down the road to fireworks and success.
Source: Open Forum

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Story: The Bunnies and Their Mother





There was once a doe-rabbit who had many children. As a good mother, all day long she told them what was best for them: The herbs they should eat, the herbs they should reject, when they could go out, when they couldn’t even have a peep...

“Above all,” she said, “you pay attention to the date of the opening of the hunting season...”

“But how are we to know about it, if we don’t read the newspapers?” asked one of the bunnies.

“As soon as you hear gun shots, even in the distance, and barking dogs, you must run for shelter,” their mother warned.

One day, one of the youngest arrived at their burrow in a fright.
“I’ve heard shots, mother. Please hide me.”

The rabbit reassured him.
“So have I, but those are not gun shots. They are rocket flares. There’s a party taking place in the village. Can’t you hear the music played by the band? What do you want your ears for? As long as they are amusing themselves, we can be at rest.”

Some days later, the whole family was grazing when a sweet and wicked melody echoed in the air like a dancing snake... The Bunnies, who had never heard anything like it, looked inquisitively at their mother.
“We’d better go home,” she said, “and stay there for a long time.”

The same rabbit found it strange:
“But mother, couldn’t such sweet music be another party?”
“It’s no party at all. Hurry up. It’s Peter Sheeper, who plays the pipe and roams around scattering disaster. He sets traps all over the place, which tear us to pieces. Oh, I shiver at the thought of them!”

A little while later, the bunny came to his mother again, and he was in great distress: “I’ve seen men with guns. They must be hunters.”

“I’ve seen them, too” said his mother. “You mustn’t worry about these. They are forest guards and they are collecting the traps that Peter set, because they are forbidden by law. We are free now. However, it’s always good to be on guard.”

Life in the woods is certainly very dangerous. Just the things a rabbit must learn to keep himself from being shot!
Flash: Life is a continuous journey with full of experience. Its important for us to behave like wise men who learn from the mistakes of others and keep our eyes and senses open to learn new things continuously. However, there is nothing to be really afraid of. There is always a solution to most of the problems in our lives. Its only matter of analyzing the situation and consulting with the RIGHT people.

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