Monday, April 29, 2013

Decision in a "B" - 'Blink'

"The key to good decision making is not knowledge. It is understanding. We are swimming in the former. We are desperately lacking in the latter" (Malcolm Gladwell)

Hi Everyone,

I would like to dedicate this article to Professor Shanbagh (MBA communications professor during MBA) and Mr. Amit Madan (head of production team of current IPL). So here is the 2nd article in the series of 26 articles.

I am giving you a scenario. Think of a problem that you have been working around for months and still not able to get solution to it. Then all of a sudden one day you wake up from sleep and feel that in your dreams you have found a solution. Has this ever happened to you? Happens to me all the time. Why?

Our brain is a wonderful thing. It knows the answers even before we completely understand the problem. There are two parts to the brain one is the conscious and the other is subconscious - to put it in a crude way. Now we all focus on our sub conscious so much that we forget that there is another much bigger part of the brain that is million times faster than our conscious brain and has solutions ready at hand. The problem is very few people can trust their subconscious and tap into it.

We have a habit of over analyzing things to the point that we miss the simplest and easiest of solutions. When I was in MBA we had a task of book presentation. In that every group was supposed to read a book and present on it. Our group was given a book titled, "Blink". When we understood the theme of the book we decided to we will not over analyze the presentation. We used to do a brainstorming session where everyone put forth two ideas that appealed to him from the book. And we compiled a presentation on those ideas. The flow came automatically. This was the first time I actually realized the power of subconscious. And to win the best presentation in that activity was just icing on the cake.

So what is this blink all about? Its trusting your gut instinct and not letting is paralyzed with over analysis. Most of the times the first idea that came into our mind was the best one but then we start analyzing it consciously and we end making a poorer choice. Blink is about letting your subconscious guide you. The only think you need to do is to accept what your subconscious is telling you.

Some examples where we over analyze. We write mails to clients every day. Most of the time we write a mail, then we read it, and then we make some changes. Then we re-read it again make some changes. This process happens a few times and in the end the result is most of the times not better than the original mail. The first thoughts that come to mind are most of the times the best ones. We need to learn to recognize the best ones from the bad ones. This process takes some time but in the end the results are wonderful and very fruitful.

It took me many months to trust my subconscious and let it guide me. But now I trust it completely. I love making decisions in the blink of an eye. I have good and bad experiences alike. But don’t confuse your desires with your subconscious because then it will be a bad decision. The perfection comes slowly but it shows in the agility of your decision making.

So what an individual will gain from it. First the processing speed of mind increases. Think of it as an upgrade from dual core to octa core processor. Secondly a lot of time is saved on over analysis. 

Remember analysis is good but over analysis is bad. Trust your instincts and live more happily. Unlock your subconscious mind and the power hidden in it. I will close this article with the same quote that I did my presentation with

"Dont think just 'blink' "

Genie Signing off

P.S. - I will recommend everyone to read the book "Blink" by Malcolm Gladwell

Friday, April 26, 2013

The "A" Repellant - 'Arrogance'

"Arrogance is a creature. It does not have senses. It has only a sharp tongue and the pointing finger" (Toba Beta)

Hi Everyone,

This article is first in a series of 26 articles that will follow. The theme of these articles is simply whatever word or phrase comes to my mind when I think of a letter; will be the topic of that day.

I would like to dedicate this entire series to Mr. Amit Madan (head of production that is organizing current IPL) who gave me this wonderful idea. I had the opportunity of meeting him on one of my travels and we hit off wonderfully. A very knowledgable and down to earth person who gave a whole new perspective on seeing things. So here is the first article in a long series.

Just few hours back I saw two people on one side of the road signalling to an auto person on other side of the road whether he will go or not. The auto driver declined and the two people started swearing at the auto person. I was walking by the auto at that time and even though I cannot hear what they were saying I could easily make out the words from their lip movements. Why were they swearing?

Going back few days,  I was in the lift of my office and I rested my shoe against the lift wall. The operator suddenly asked me to remove my foot and that too in a bit rude tone. I did as he told me to but I was a little angry at the tone he used with me. But he continued saying that everyone dirties the elevator walls  without even considering that the housekeeping has to clean it everyday at as early as 5-6 in the morning. Then all of a sudden all my anger left me because I realised that it was actually my fault and in my momentary arrogance I got angry without even thinking one bit about my fault. Why? Because he interrupted my comfort?

Going back a few months, I went to  mall and there were many autos lined up. A person came up to an auto and asked if he will go to certain destination. He declined and the person started manhandling that auto driver. Why? Did that person own the auto driver? Doesn't an auto driver has the right to decline?

Going back many years, I was travelling by train and my stop was coming. With me was one of my friend. We were standing at the door and there was also a tea vendor at the door. He was trying to gather all his things. He asked us to hold one of his boxes for a while. Actually we both looked at each other thinking who would hold. Finally I held the box. The vendor realised that we were hesitant and once he has settled his things he said to us one thing - there is no shame in doing a small work - and alighted at the station. Why did we feel hesitant? Did we think that holding that box was beneath our pride?

There are several other instances from my own life that I can recount. And in fact in every person's life there will be instances where that person has looked down upon someone with arrogance because in his opinion that fellow was beneath him. Why this arrogance? Recently I have been thinking a lot on this. And Finally I have come to the conclusion that if we have something that others don't we feel superior and its this superiority that breeds that arrogance. The arrogance in turn freezes sensible portion of the brain and our dislike for people beneath us overtakes us.

But I have also realised that by being arrogant we are only alienating the people around us. In fact if we show a little smile to any person who we are dealing with you will never know when that person will might come to our aid in future. My sister has this wonderful quality of talking to everyone with a smiling face. She makes it a habit to greet everyone even if its a street vendor, cashier in a shop, sales assistants etc and properly thank them once the work is done. A habit which I have picked upon and made my habit too. And you won't need to wait for months to see the effect of this habit because the effects are instantaneous. The whole demeanour of the other person will change and his behaviour towards us will become friendly and warm.

A smile, a friendly greeting and a proper thank you does not cost more than a minute and the difference it make in a person's day is huge. I was shopping at Pantaloons with my sister and it was a very busy day because of some discount offer. There was a long queue at the checkout counter. The person in front of us was talking to the cashier rudely. When our turn came we saw that the cashier was a girl and she was so flustered with customers' behaviour that she was not able to focus on the work. So we asked  her what her name was, joked with her and then invited her to have an ice cream with us in the food court. Her mouth was open and she thought we were joking. When we said we were not joking and she needed a break she was genuinely surprised. Even though she could not come with us That day but after few visits she did accept our invitation. Now both me and my sister knows that if we ever had any problems she will help us out.

This is how much we can get by spending a minute of our time and showing a warm and caring behaviour towards other people. Everyone just wants a little respect. They don't expect that you invite them to your home and hug them, they simply expect a smile and respect.

Next time before you yell at someone in arrogance just because you thought they were beneath you, pause for a moment and think how you would feel if you were the one being shouted at and whether your shouting is justified or not. Smile and embrace people rather than repelling them with arrogance.

Genie Signing off

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Digital Alzheimer

"The more an individual relies on digital technology, the less interpersonal and physical abilities one has"

Hello Everyone,

I have been writing on some serious topics so thought will take a break and write on a little less serious topic. This idea came to my mind yesterday when I was making a word doc. My mind was actually occupied somewhere else and hence I was making a lot of typing mistakes but bless Bill Gates for providing such a great in-built correction tool which many times doesn't even let the writer know that mistakes were made. So I am happy that i can ignore my typing mistakes but is my 'brain' happy???? 

Well I will have to ask my brain (Still not sure how I will do it??) for that and if my brain is as lazy as I am then it will probably give me a thumbs up and a big smile. But jokes aside and on a serious note I am sure its not the brains which are lazy it's us who make our brains lazy. And how we are making our brains lazy? Simple we are surrounded by so many tools which we can use instead of using our brains. Things like calculators, google, office softwares etc are deteriorating our memory and making us weak.

Just to prove my point I will ask a simple question. How many phone numbers from your mobile you can recite. Many people won't be able to recite more than 3-4 numbers. There are some people who actually make an effort to remember many numbers. Then there are also some people who don't even remember their own number. Surprised but its a reality. I have come across such people. I have suffered from the goodness of digital technology myself and so I will put down my experience. When I was in class 10th I had commerce as subject. We used to have questions on accounting which required a lot of number additions. When I was at home I used the calculators to speed up my work. But the same usage brought my speed down in the exams and my grades suffered because of it.

I learnt a lesson from this and made it a point to use my brains always. I then learned vedic mathematics to engage my brain into rigorous activities. Other means were puzzles and reading books etc. But how many of us actually realize that these technologies are deteriorating our interpersonal abilities and our gray matter. Everyone must have heard of the Alzheimers disease. Its when a person starts losing his/ her memory slowly with time. I think we are slowly suffering the digital equivalent of it because of our over reliance on digital technologies.

And please don't take me wrong, I an not against the digital technologies. I use a lot of them myself but where do we draw the line. Parents are handing digital gadgets in the hands of the kids - nothing wrong with that but it becomes an issue when they fail to keep a check. When I was in MBA I doubt anyone did their final project without using google. Whatever they got on google they could also easily get in a library. Agreed but also remember that our previous generations did not have a google to support them and they in many cases did far better than us.

We are entering a Digital Alzheimer's age where technology is making us losing our memory. People argue that saving time is important but I say saving your brain is also important.

Genie Signing off

Drawing The Line

"This article is dedicated to fellow blogger Jasveena Prabhagaran" (Genie)

Hi Everyone,

Before I start the article I would like to thank my recent fellow blogger friend Jasveena Prabhagaran for pointing me to one huge problem that's plaguing our society. Her blog Thoughts and Views That Matter has given me great inspiration to keep going. Do visit that blog it will inspire you a lot too.

To start the article see the image below and do comment on what is the first thought that comes in your mind:

Its a nice sensitive message and fairly easy to understand. Also there is no ambiguity in the message. How in the world can some post a a comment like this to this beautiful and sensitive message:

I will highlight the top message for ease below:
My friend Jasveena was ready to murder this person and she requested me to put opinion from a male's perspective. To be very frank I was also very disgusted. But before I elaborate into that let me develop some background to the article, now that the issue is in open.
When we grow up we come in contact with people during various stages of life. The first contact starts at home. Then comes the school, then comes the college, then comes the work place and so it goes on. During these contacts we learn something new in every stage. One of these things is sexual and adult jokes and innuendos. Sexual talks and innuendos are something that have been present in the society from a long time so I will not say that joking sexually is wrong or right. My concern here is how do we decide where we are supposed to say what and when do we know we have to stop. Big Questions really which I will touch upon just a moment in later paragraphs.

Jokes on male and female sexuality are fairly common. In fact they are a huge source of entertainment among college teenagers - girls and boys alike. But there is a limit to everything. There is a line which should not be crossed. There is a time and place for everything. If a married couple start talking about their sexual activities right in the middle of a crowded restaurant, most of the people will feel awkward and uncomfortable. This person XYZ Malhotra also forgot that what should be said at what place. It is because of these jackasses and male chauvinists that society ignores any mistake done by a man and punishes any small mistake done by a female heavily. Why? If a guy shoots a sexual innuendo in public he is the dude but if a girl does the same people say n number of things about the girl, her character and what not.

Oh and if you have time, do visit the Blog of this "nice" fellow XYZ Malhotra once. I will not disgrace my blog by giving link to his blog. You can easily find it on Google Plus. See every person has his ways of pleasure. Some people love writing, some playing, some reading, some sexual talks, some helping etc. But no body is interested in knowing about sexual sadisms in public forums XYZ. There are forums meant for that, use them because I don't have the authority to stop you, not that you would listen anyway. If, and mind it "IF", you visit his blog you will find jokes targeted solely at females and in a really really sadistic, horrendous, vulgar and obscene way. I felt embarrassed after reading the first few and then I closed the page. I just wanted to confirm whether this was a single isolated incident or it was something of a habit. Seems like a sick habit.

Now the problems that arise out of this case? There are so many. The first and foremost you are disrespecting the opposite gender. Second you are polluting the public space by such "legally" idiotic comments (for those who are thinking why I used the term legally idiotic - in legal terms an idiot person is one who has no sanity in him/ herself. He or she is insane at all given times). Thirdly you are encouraging others to follow your path which I am pretty sure is not something worth following. When kids go to college they are introduced to a whole new world of sexual innuendos and talks but most of the people are sensible enough to know when and where to talk what. But people like XYZ make the effort done by everyone else wash down the drains. 

So coming back to the Big Questions I highlighted above I would say in one sentence - Drawing the Line is important. Its important to know what you are saying and how it will impact the other's feelings. It's important to know that there are some limits one is not supposed to cross. Do whatever you want in your private space but when you are in public learn to draw the line. There are people who love what you may write XYZ, go entice them, buddy them but don't disrespect others. Just think if Jasveena was nearby you at present you would probably be in a hospital. Same is the case with me.

Once again I will reiterate one should learn to draw the line in everything they do. Excess of anything is bad. It not only creates bitterness but gives vile ideas to many sadists which they take out on innocent victims. XYZ you may not know but you are contributing to the part of the problem inadvertently. There is a line one should never cross. Adult jokes and innuendos are ok only when they are said with fun and modesty and taken in the same manner of fun. After that they make the person saying them sick and sadist. XYZ in my definition you are sick sadist person. Look at your age at least.

I am concluding this blog with one simple message that social networks allures everybody but there is a networking etiquette that everyone should learn and follow. And one of the most basic etiquettes is to learn to draw the line. Lets hope you don't ever hurt anybody's sentiments. Lets pledge not to take anymore shit from such jackasses and if they don't draw the line we force them to draw the line for the sanity of others

Genie Signing off

Monday, April 22, 2013

Reeling Reality

"Pornography is destructive because it forms in its clientèle expectations that are simply not connected to reality, to real men and women with real bodies (not to mention real souls, hearts, and minds)" (Lauren Winner, from article: “Purity,” appearing on

Hi Everyone,

I still remember that when I was preparing for and giving my entrance exams for the B. Tech. admissions internet was considered a luxury. People used internet only in really needy situations as it was costly going to internet cafe and do your work. The reason why I am bringing this up is because with the spread of internet, not only knowledge has spread but also things which are not good for many people. One such thing is explicit adult content that is readily available on the Internet.

With the advent of digital technology internet and hence all the content associated with it has reached in the hands of the people in the form of mobile phones. Adults, teenagers, kids everyone has access to the adult material on the internet and there is no check whatsoever. Well there is a little bit of check but considering that even 6-7th grader kids have access to mobile phones now, whatever little check parents have on their kids and teenagers is nullified. On the brighter side there are families which exert great amount of check and control which is actually good.

The rape of the 5 year old girl is currently in news. Everyone is talking about the negligence and criminal actions of the police officers, the rapist and what not but what people are failing to comprehend is what led the person to commit the crime. Neither the media is highlighting this fact and nor the people are able to read between the lines and get to one of the root causes of the issue. The main root cause is that we have adopted many things from the western culture but have failed to change our mentality accordingly. I will not say whether it is right or wrong to view adult content because its a personal opinion but I will definitely say this that viewing should only be kept to viewing and not practiced on innocent victims. The doctors took out an oil bottle from inside that girl, really heinous way of putting viewing into action. What these criminals fail to understand is that what they view in the adult movies and sites is something that is done in a controlled environment and with mutual consent.

So coming back to the Indian society where the society is not so open and everyone has access to the adult content, what are other causes which are causing these heinous crimes to happen? The second most important cause after the unrestricted availability is the inability of the people to change their mindset accordingly. The society in West is quite open and hence these things to not affect people to that degree as they do in Indian society. In the above rape case, the criminal had several porn movies on his mobile and that's what led him to commit the crime. He could not separate the reel life from real life.

Sadly there is no check from the Government on the various adult sites that are rampant on the internet. There was a news article recently which questioned the government's inability to prevent the adult content from reaching the masses. Government can make all the laws they want but what they fail to realise is that when a person commits a crime he/ she never thinks that he/ she will be caught. Every criminal thinks that they are smart enough to avoid capture. So instead of passing laws government should try to address the root causes. Its time that the politicians get off their collective arses and do something towards removal of the root cause.

Everyone please remember reel life is different from real life. And I am saying this not only for adult content but for everything we view on television or internet. Many people get injured after watching some stunt and then trying out on their own. Lets keep the reel life and real life separate - reel life in the reels and real life in the reality.

Genie Signing off

Thursday, April 18, 2013

A Horny Mess - Part 1

"There is no ambient noise here: no radio, no TV, no airplanes, no passing cars. In the Twentieth century we are so accustomed to hearing sound all the time, the silence feel creepy" (from Timeline by Michael Crichton)

Hi Everyone,

Ever thought what silence sounds like. You must me thinking "silence sounds" is an oxymoron but even the silence has a sound to it. But a question to everybody when was the last time they felt the complete silence around them. I think for this generation, and many generations before us the answer would be never. The above lines are from a scene where a group of historians do time travel to 14th century and when they land there they don’t find any ambient noise and it creeps the hell out of them. Why? Because they are used to noise. And aren't we used to noise too? Think on it.

I started writing this article when I was in traffic going to my sister's place for some work. I was stuck in traffic and there was a guy on a motorcycle who was blowing the horn again and again even though it was red light and traffic was stalled. Some people even asked him to stop doing that because the noise of the horn was very irritating and very loud. Do you know that the Indian government has a regulation on how loud the noise from the horns can be. The limit is 55 decibels near residential areas and 60-65 decibels in open areas. Well thorn of that biker was well above 100 decibels as it felt drilling holes in my head.

Having said this and with no offense to anybody, many of us do have a nasty habit of using vehicle horns without any concern for the others or without any need. Some people blow horns just for fun to show they have got loud horns, some people blow horns as if by doing that the traffic will move on its own and some people do because they are in a hurry and feel that others will understand that by hearing their blowing horns. What a chaotic and horny mess we have created for ourselves and for our future generation. Feels it isn't enough for us that there are already so many noises that are beyond our control and we add our own noises in the mess. 

And I will tell you that in many foreign countries using vehicle horns is actually considered rude and an insult. My brother who is currently in Zurich told me that if anyone has to use vehicle horns then its an insult to you. Why people don't need horns there? Three simple reasons - less population meaning less traffic, secondly willingness to follow traffic rules and thirdly people don’t take out their vehicles for every single errand. In India we do exactly opposite of last two reasons sadly and these two simple ways will considerably reduce the noise pollution in India.

When I was class 12th there was a chapter in our book titled "Sannata" meaning Silence. The chapter was about what Silence sounds like. I don’t think people will be able to experience that anytime in the future. My native place is a village and trust me whenever I visit my place I welcome the peace and reduced noise level that comes with it. Over time noise level has increased there also and now I can understand what the author was talking about in "Sannata"

Some days I desire to be surrounded by nothing but silence and enjoy the sound of silence. Please do your part. Don’t push that horn button unnecessarily and contribute towards solution. Keep your vehicle horns decibel levels below the acceptable limits. It's not that difficult.

Genie Signing off

Sunday, April 14, 2013

The Wish List

"Kids are price less. They are loud, funny, loveable, crazy, funny, and a hand full. Even though they look so peaceful and calm when they're sleeping, you just hope they wake up to see them smile or just hear the sound of little foot steps around the house" (Sinahi Martinez)

Hi Everyone,

Every morning we all use deodorants when we get ready, every time we go out to eat many of us order some kind of cold drinks, every time we go for a movie we order popcorn, girls love to shop for cosmetics, dresses and sandals, many times we don't think twice what we say to our parents, many times we hurt our near and dear ones badly, we waste food in restaurants, many people don't think twice about leaving huge tips in restaurants and most of us don't think twice that we are not physically or mentally handicapped in any way. Why? Because we take these things for granted.

Ask someone who has lost parents, he will know the value of having the presence of parents in life. Ask a blind person what he would not give to see the beautiful colours of the world, the sunrise and sunset. In life we as a human beings have this habit of not appreciating what we have. This is really sad. I won't say that I don't take things for granted because I also take many things for granted. As I am writing this article I am realising how selfishly I have been living my life till now... I have done things for others, mostly my family and sometimes for strangers but I feel that I should do more.

So when I said all this to one of my friend, he said what difference can one person make? Well to be frank not much but even if I can bring happiness for lifetime in the life of one person I would consider my life successful. With this little introduction I would come to the core of the topic which is helping kids in orphanages.

Few years back when I was in Delhi, I visited an orphanage. I wanted to do something for the society and thought that helping kids in some orphanage would be the best way to do it. When I visited there the head of the orphanage showed me a list. That list contained one most desirable wish of all the kids in the orphanage. You won't believe what were the dreams of those kids. Some of the wishes from little girls were as simple as like having a pair of nice sandals and lipsticks. There was one small girl whose wish was very simple but it touched me deeply - she wanted to have an elder brother who could give her a hug every night before sleeping. I think now who so ever is reading this article would be able to put things in perspective and understand what I meant when I said we take things for granted.

For once I would not put any statistics in my article because I don't feel numbers can describe the problem and we need to realise this problem from heart and only then we would understand that we all really need to step up and do something. There are two ways in which we can help these kids seriously - one is deciding to mentor a kid and other is to adopt a kid.

Now I know in our Indian society adopting a kid is a kind of taboo actually. If a married couple is brave enough to adopt a kid, rest of the relatives start cursing about the adopted kid not being of same blood. If a single person adopts a kid then rumours about his/ her being involved with someone starts spreading and it becomes difficult for the person to find a life partner at a later stage in life. Really abysmal state of society in my opinion but I can't change the society now. So many people who want to  do something good are deterred from doing it because of these reasons.

But mentoring is something which everyone can do. Mentoring means paying for the education of the child. There are many organizations which run programs for mentoring the kids. You only need to donate a monthly or yearly amount towards the education of the child. I think almost everyone can contribute towards this because the amount is not much. Before anyone can say that I only give "gyan"; I, myself, have enrolled in a program called "Nanhi Kali" and I am contributing towards education of one girl child.

I would like to close this article by urging everyone to think how their lives would have been if there were no parents to love, care and lookout for them and where we would have been if not for the education we have. This generation is much more free from the orthodoxism of the society than previous generations and we have a real chance of doing something good. Just imagine if every educated, earning citizen of this country take the ownership of educating one under privileged kid where would this country be? Just think.

Lets fulfil the wish list of those innocent kids cause they are not asking for diamond, gold or a ferrari. Their small wishes can be fulfilled easily and we can empower them through education so that they can do the same for others in future.

"Orphans are the only ones who get to choose their fathers, and they love them twice as much" (Adam Johnson)

Genie Signing off

P.S. : If anyone is interested in details of mentoring program please contact me personally.

Sunday, April 7, 2013


"Fear is that little dark room where negatives are developed" (Michael Pritchard)


Hello Everyone,

When I was a little kid I once saw a horror movie and even though I was afraid of watching it I still watched it fully. The problem began after I watched it. I was not able to sleep. I still remember I used to sleep on edge side of the bed which was beside the window. That night I just could not sleep there and I even said to my mom that I did not want to sleep there. Now when I think of those days I laugh on the stupidity of what used to be my thought process. But in that age it was not stupid at all. In that age it was sheer fear of known and sometimes unknown. In this blog I will touch upon the meaning, origins and actions against "FEAR", something which resides in everyone of us.

I will start by saying that very few people can claim that that have no fear of any kind. In fact as we mature the type of fear in us also changes. When we are kids we are afraid of ghosts, dark places, when we are teen we are afraid of failing exams, when we go into relationships we have fear that our girlfriend or boyfriend will leave us and chose someone else over us, when we get into family (well I have not reached there but still...) parents fear for the safety of their kids, when we are in jobs we have fear of reprimands, bad performance etc.. The list goes on. In every stage of life we have some or other kind of fear. If someone after reading this says that they have no such fear then they have probably fear of admitting they have some fear.

But the big questions is why and where these fears come from? The first one I listed is the most easy to address. Parents try to protect keep kids in line by telling them about strange men who will kidnap them if they went out of the house, through ghosts and other imaginary beings. Parents are directly responsible for instilling these fears. Another big reason for developing various fears later in life is lack of optimism and negative reinforcement which most of the people employ to get their work done. What most people forget is that positive reinforcement is much better approach than negative reinforcement. I will target one area specifically. The students have a eternal fear of failure, non performance and letting their parents down. The number of suicides among students have increase by 26% to 7379 since 2006. This is a drastic increase. A huge factor in this increase is negative reinforcement.

Negative reinforcement means that in order to get the work done you keep the person in line by telling him about the bad consequences in case he does not complete the work where as positive reinforcement is when you tell the person about the incentives that he can get in case he completes the work. The religious gurus are the best examples of negative reinforcement. I don't need to say any further. The movie OMG very eloquently captures this aspect.

When a kid is born he has no fear, how he can when he knows nothing about the world. The fears come into him over time through us only. In my opinion fear is not the best way to get something done because it might get your work done but it also kills a part of the person permanently. Fear clouds the judgment of the person, fear reduces the efforts of the person in most of the cases, fear makes people insecure, fear causes fights and troubles, "fear is that little darkroom where only negatives are developed".

You cannot associate any positives with fear. So why fear. Turn your fears into positive energy by understanding your fears and channeling it into work. I have done and have succeeded. I will not say I don't have any fears but I do try to get rid of them. I found two very beautiful definitions of FEAR:

Face Everything And Rejoice and Face Everything And Resign

So what are you - Rejoicer or Runner? Cheer and don't fear.

Genie Signing off

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Networking Quotient

"Social networking is about building people up in your network NOT tearing them down" (Tasha Turner)

Hi Everyone,

Few years back when I was doing my graduation course Orkut was in fashion. Our internet lab remained open for the hostel people for few hours in the night and people used to spend most of their time on Orkut. Everyone was crazy about Orkut. People used to talk about it all the time. To be very frank I was not at all interested, for reasons unknown to me. One thing that stood out about all the conversations that happened around Orkut was people used to compare how many friends were there in their friend list. Pretty stupid in my opinion. So today while I was thinking of what to write it struck me that we need to invent a new terminology for all the networking fans - Networking Quotient (do note the sarcasm).

In many European countries it is a law that children below the age of 13 cannot have a networking account on sites like MySpace, Facebook, Google+ etc. From age 13-16 (varies with nations) the account is only for minimal use and under constant parental guidance. And there are pretty solid reasons for that too. Many crimes are happening because of how connected social networking has made the world. A huge percentage of these crimes involve underaged children. Even after restrictions in those countries the children still suffer because of these crimes, reason being they create their accounts without their guardian's knowledge.

Coming back to India, as far as I know there is no age limit on creating accounts on any social networking sites. I have seen kids in 6th standard glued to their mobiles and PCs engaged in social networking. Personally I feel the term social networking should be changed to digital networking because I really don't see the social aspect of it. People might argue with me that there is a social element as you get to meet new people, get in contact with new people. But do you really? You get a chat message from you old lost friend, you see the uploaded pics etc. But if you do not carry this towards talking to him/ her on phone, meeting them once in a while the purpose of social networking is lost and defeated. What I am trying to say that social networks are not your world they are just a means to an end - the end being getting actually social not just digitally social.

There is such a dark side to this social network which people just ignore and refuse to see. Today many criminals pose as goody goody people on social networks and try to lure teen girls and boys on the network. Forget about Facebook, I have seen live case in my own college happening through Orkut where an online guy lured the girl so much that she ran away from the college and got in trouble. Thankfully she was recovered safely and joined college again. With Facebook the number of crimes have increased rapidly. I can confidently say that half of the people who post on networking sites do not have the maturity and sense to decide whether the content they are about to post is worth posting, whether it will cause then any harm or not. I know people who post just for the sake of seeing how many likes they will get.  Many girls post their photographs on the networking sites and there are vultures waiting out there for them to do so and get close to them by posing a good guy or girl. These are just few examples.

Another dark aspect of social networking - loss of privacy. First people post their private information like details, pics etc and then when someone abuses that information they cry wolf. People just don't know where to draw the line. Another problem - people have become digital zombies today. It really looks so funny when you see a person who is glued to his laptop with a Facebook account open and continuously refreshing the screen to see if something new has been posted. As soon as something new is posted they like and comment. I tested this a couple of years back by closing my eyes and pressing random buttons on the keyboard and whatever got typed I posted as my status. You will not believe within 30 seconds I got 3 likes on that stupid status. The entire social world of people has shrunk into laptop, mobile and PC screens.

If I ask everyone what is their IQ, 90% people will not know what is their IQ but if I ask how many friends they have in their social network, 90% people will definitely give right answer to that. I am writing this article after going through and understanding the evil addiction these social networking sites could be. There is a game on Facebook called Criminal Case. I started playing it and trust me I will never get back that one month of my life ever again. It was supreme addiction. Finally I gathered my courage and stopped playing completely. For some days I felt so void, not being able to understand what to do with all the free time I had all of a sudden. Such is the deplorable state of this generation. It's really sad and the situation is not improving. The lack of checks and balances at the family level and government level are worsening the situation even further.

Networking in any way is good but addiction to networking is bad especially if it is done through the virtual world of internet. You don't understand it now but today people are becoming socially handicapped not knowing how to communicate and mingle in real life because they have essentially married their social networks. Anything used wisely is good and this is true with social networking also. Today I use social networks mainly for promoting my articles and blogs but that consumes only a small portion of my time. People waste their time doing almost nothing on networking when there so many conferences, education programs, development programs that can do via social networks.

Time wasted in the virtual world is time lost in real world. That time will not come back. Sadly enough this is becoming a very serious problem, serious enough to devote entire branch of study to it. Increase you Intelligence Quotient, Emotional Quotient, and Social Quotient through the Networking Quotient. NQ alone will not get you to your goals.

Be the real SOLUTION for this virtual PROBLEM.

Genie Signing off

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Hippocrates Thinking of Changing "The Oath"

"If we had to live with 99.9 (success rate in industry), we would have 2 unsafe plane landings per day at O’Hare, 16000 pieces of lost mail every hour and 32,000 bank checks deducted from wrong bank account every hour" (W. E. Deming)

Hi Everyone,

When I was in school there was one class which I did not like very much - Hindi poetry class or commonly known as Hindi II. But one thing from a poem I read in that class stuck with me for some reason - To get a human life a soul has to go through 850000 different birth forms and only then one gets to take birth as a human being. Given the number I feel that we as human beings have an obligation to make our life count towards something and when I say something I mean what we achieve personally and what we do for others also in the same life span.

The reason I bring this up is because of the increasing number of deaths due to medical negligence and malpractice. Doctors in India and other nations too are considered second to God. When a person goes to a hospital or doctor he leaves everything in the hands of the doctor even if the chances of survival of the patient are very low and prays that the doctor will do some miracle and save their kin. But when a person/ patient dies because of some negligence of the doctor it becomes a crime and should be treated as such. So being a human being and more importantly a doctor  the responsibility towards the care of  people under them increases many fold and should be discharged as such.

Just few days ago I came across a news where a rash bike driver hit a person alighting from the bus. Both got injured and no one was coming forth for help. Then a 17 year old kid forced a cabbie to take them to a very good hospital. The doctors refused to admit the biker because they said that he was very serious and could not be saved. Now what shocked me here was that not even an effort was made. Both the persons died shortly. Some time back in a hospital in J&K two newborns died because the hospital staff did not switch on the generator when the electricity went off and the infants were on ventilator. I have read cases of doctors discriminating between patients based on their caste, religion etc., I have read news on doctors delaying treatment in the middle of the procedure because the patient did not have enough money.... I can go on about the cases and the list will not end. I will give some shocking facts** on the deaths caused due to medical negligence in drug administration: 

1.Of all visits to the medical emergency department 6 per cent are drug-related.
2.There are around 720,000 AE (Adverse events) and around 400,000 deaths due to ADR (Adverse Drug Reaction)
3.47% of the time the prescribed drug is unnecessary, 19% times irrational and 11% times hazardous
4.Of all the ADE (Adverse Drug Event) 18%-30% are because of negligence on part of the doctors
5.And finally below is an interesting breakup of ME (Medications Errors)
Now where is the fault? As per current surveys and studies the percentage of faults in medical profession have almost reached to 1% which is way higher than the tolerance limit. Just to give you a perspective a 99.9% accuracy rate is considered very poor in medical profession. And there are various reasons behind the problem, the most prominent being backdoor entry into the medical colleges. This not only leads to a poorer quality of medical professionals emerging from the system but it also leads to the deaths of the patients because the doctor was not knowledgeable enough to deal with the situation.

Every doctor takes an oath when he comes into the medical profession - The Hippocratic Oath - where they swear to - treat all patients equally, give the judgement as per their ability and leave what they do not understand to someone who does, not give bad counsel to anybody and keep the details of their patients secret. Sadly enough all these tenets of  the oath are being violated now a days, if the increasing number of deaths by medical negligence and malpractice are any indication.

Seeing the current scenario of the medical professionals Hippocrates must be thinking of changing the oath cause people don't seem to follow it anyway. This is a really sad situation and needs to be addressed. I ask the readers to come forward, engage in a debate and suggest plausible SOLUTIONs which can be taken for this PROBLEM.

Genie Signing off

** Thanks to Dr. Arun D. Bhatt for the numbers
** The numbers are a bit old but the current numbers are much higher that what are presented above so you can easily understand the gravity of the situation