Monday 14 April 2014

Book Review- Life Mantras by a Life Coach- Preeti Subberwal

ISBN- 9789383271665
Title- Life Mantras by a life coach.
Author- Preeti Subberwal
Price- Rs 385
Publisher- Self published

What I hold in my hands is this precious-looking, hardbound book beaming with positive messages and cheerful floral artwork. Much different from the work that I usually review, this book holds within itself some sunny positive quotes and some messages that a person who doesn't have life quite figured out- can benefit from.

About the author-

The author is a certified master spirit life coach and a licensed NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) practitioner. She is passionate about delivering personal and professional development workshops, seminars and coaching programs. She is also founder-director of 'Thoughtful Engagement ', a firm that facilitates personality development.

About the cover-

The cover uses bright purple shades and floral patterns to infuse positiveness in the reader's mind. The jacket highlights what the book is about and a quick glance at the back cover clarifies its target readership and main objectives.

About the book-

The book has been written in a simple and crisp way, there is no technical NLP jargon, nor is there any flashiness about the whole deal. The book doesn't claim to reveal any super secret recipe to success. It is not a key to all things but it's a way through which you can live a meaningful life. The pages are glossy and thick and the illustrations are one too many. It does give the impression of watching a powerpoint presentation instead of reading a book sometimes but it fulfills its promise of confining all the valuable life lessons into one.

The book is ideal for reading when one is at crossroads in life as these are lessons that one might already know but might be acting in a direction opposite to them. The book is divided into ten chapters which guide the person in taking different types of decisions at different stages of life. Literary aspect is zero in such books and it isn't supposed to be present either. The language is layman English and the messages are clear with no cryptic elements.

Here are some pieces that I did for the book as a part of the Reader's Cosmos team-

With the headings in each of its chapters, the book guides you through sane advice and acts as a wake up call. I think people facing dilemmas in life would benefit largely from it. The book also modifies your personality for the good by helping you reflect on your choices and decisions. This self-evaluative quality of the book is its USP. I'd recommend it to all those who want to get a hang of things and themselves and have been trying since long. I'd also recommend contacting the author for further coaching as some crises need to be addressed by professionals.

Sunday 6 April 2014

Dental Agneepath

When I was a kid...

Nature's Friends

"When I was a little kid..." Wow, I already sound to myself as if I am a thousand years old while saying that. But yes, nostalgia kicks in and so does the realisation that the childhood I've had was way different from the childhoods of the young ones these days. Poetry thrives on our primal emotions and our connectedness to what surrounds us. In that sense, the childhoods of the yesteryears were more poetic than the childhoods of today. Don't worry, this is not a sulky blogpost lecturing about forming bonds with nature and playing outside, it is just a fond remembrance of the good ol' days.

There is challenge in every nook and cranny for mankind. It is as if mother nature wants you to earn your rewards. The bush that houses those luscious, juicy wild berries is rife with thorns; the guava tree with branches laden with fruits has slippery skin so that climbing it is tricky; the mango tree does its best to hide its fruits behind the leaves. As a kid, I was always fond of these little treats that nature hides for us. I'd gang up with my buddies, ask one of them to hold the thorny branches of the shrub with a bamboo stick and walk towards the center to collect the berries; learning to climb the guava tree involved the evolution of knowledge about where exactly to place one's feet to get a good grip. Over time, you tend to develop a method or trick to do things and perhaps that's what nature wants you to do. For spotting the ripe mangoes and nailing them down with your catapult, you need sharpness of vision and lots of practice. A child needs nature to hold its hand and walk it through these challenges.

Then there are the quadrapeds. I think learning to make friends with other animals is a skill humans are well endowed with. You see a stray puppy and you take it home, you hold its little paws as your mom scolds you for bringing in the germs, you feed the kitten that regularly visits your porch on lazy afternoons, you take the crawling caterpillars on a leaf and watch its hundreds of feet move in unison, you help a bug which has fallen on its back get back up on its feet; all these small little things that you do make you a better human, nay, they distinguish you from other animals. Compassion is something you can learn through nature- be it laying down flour for the ants or water for the thirsty birds on summer afternoons.

There is also adventure waiting for you at every step. I am not talking about forest trails or even a walk down the hill; nature invites you in its small ceremonies every day. Pigeons laying their nests in your window, male and female sparrows longing for each other in your lawn, dogs chasing down a cat, squirrels performing daredevil stunts on tree branches- there is action everywhere and a romantic mind finds it all poetic and thrilling at the same time.

Nature is also where your creativity meets imagination. All those fables that you're taught in kindergarten, you can see them come alive. All the characters with their peculiar mannerisms are right in front of you in a colourful canvas, playing their roles. If you observe closely, there are so many stories waiting to be written, so many secrets waiting to be told. It's all like a spider's web in a thick forest- mystical, intriguing and exciting.

I do not think all that is lost now, I don't think these things can ever be lost. In every park, in every hill, in zoological gardens, even in your own lawns and balconies, they're all there. All you need to do is give your eyes some rest from the flickering computer screen or TV screen for a while and observe. Mother nature is always around like a protective, loving teacher revealing her tricks like a magician and handing out treats for the observant students.

This entry is a part of contest by Kissan on Indiblogger. Here is the official website-

Thursday 3 April 2014

Your personality test: Rahul, Modi or Kejriwal

Personality Test
Find out what is your true personality based on your choice of prime ministerial candidate in the 2014 general elections.

1. Rahul Gandhi.
You'd vote for Rahul Gandhi. You have a close knit group of friends and family and your keep to your own circles. You have a sympathy toward everyone who you think is deprived in some way. You care a lot but not enough to do anything about it. Your last girlfriend/ boyfriend left you because you'd say a lot of stuff. You can't exactly recall what ticked her/ him off but that's the thing. You end up unintentionally offending people. You're also a bit of a rebel; in the sense that although your interest was in humanities but your dad forced you to take science stream. In order to show your disapproval, you took sciences and did nothing about it! Sometimes you wonder that even humanities wouldn't have made any difference in your life. You have no passion in life except to offer sympathy to the destitute and less-privileged than you. Somewhere deep down, you do know that you're not very smart but  you keep repeating things until your subconscious starts believing in them too.

Career options- NASA scientist, robotics engineer, heart surgeon, psychologist or any such role that requires precision and commitment can be played by you (in a play where you have to feign sincerity. Don't ever try to do anything for real!)

2. Narendra Modi.
You'd vote for Modi. You like the city life and shiny streets. If your dog dies, you'd just hide its carcass under the carpet so that any visually unappealing scene is avoided. You also are a bit of a status-quoist. If you're a teacher, you throw out the student who asks most questions out of your class. You crib about the good ol' days when the teacher could order the student for his thumb. You also get angry very easily. If someone calls you names, you smile and nod but once you find them walking down a dark alley, you chase them down and beat them with your belt; but here's the real deal- you're not actually angry at them. You actually do not want your public image to be smeared and that's why you have to get your hands dirty. You also are a bit of a authoritarian but in a mild way. Say, if a waiter doesn't bring your coffee in time, you just smile and walk out the restaurant saying - "Apni dosti bani rahe yaar!"

Career options- Hotel manager, Ring master in Apollo circus, Army general, anything that involves authority... is your dream job but actually, your personality is more suited for jobs that teach you team work eg. airport crew, cricketer, tea-vending team member

3. Arvind Kejriwal.
You'd pick Kejriwal for PM. You fight with your dad at home and boss in office, a lot. You haven't found your true calling in life yet but you do have a checklist and you've crossed out like a hundred jobs that you cannot do. You don't have many friends because you start pointing out their mistakes and character flaws. You have the power to make people cry. Your last lover left you because you promised a lot of things but ended up saying things like "so what?" and "this is not working out". You are also endowed with the power of ticking people off by patronizing them. You've perfected the art and learnt its fine nuances. It's very difficult to figure out whether you're serious or sarcastic.

Career options- Career counselor, astrologer, TV news anchor- any job that doesn't require you to work efficiently and just say stuff until the client/ customer sees through your facade.