Sunday, October 13, 2013

What I Should Learn from GOD alias the Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar

The master is going to finally retire from all forms of cricket and in a few days he is going to play his last international cricket match. Like millions of other fans, I have always admired and prayed for him since I started watching cricket. Recently, I have lost interest in cricket, though whenever there is a match going on I will surely ask, "Tendulkar hai kya??"

Sachin going for training
Image courtesy: Cricinfo (http://www.espncricinfo.com/champions-league-twenty20-2013/content/image/671617.html?object=35320;page=1)



Here are a few things I am going to follow, as I learn from him.

Do one thing well and everything else will follow.
Sachin played cricket and he did it with world class. Not the ferrari he owned, not his hairstyle, and not anything else about him makes him the man he is. Sure, we talk about how Kardashians dress and how Khans fight, but not for Sachin Tendulkar. 

Do that one thing, EVERYDAY.
Sachin plays cricket, practices cricket everyday. There was a coca-cola advertisement featuring the line, "Eat cricket, sleep cricket, drink only coc-cola." That was something that can signify master's way of life.

Be so humble, so humble that people feels bad to fight with you.
He was humble. Many a time, he was given out in a wrong decision, and he never protested. He never bragged about him. Even th way he speaks in the advertisements, we can feel his humility that is written all over him.

Don't ever reply to criticism by words, do the work better instead.
Ultracrepidarian critics (#$$%7)|$) has been asking him to retire, predicting his downfall, commenting wittily about the master. He never replied,  instead played the next game better. He surpassed his own records again and again.

We will probably never see him in a field again, donning that blue uniform, rubbing the ball on the pants or destroying the opposing bowler with his bat. But he will remain in our life as a hero, who never disappointed us. Sure, we wanted more.

On an emotional note,

You knew it was coming, it was inevitable, then why sachin do you still produce this numbness?
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) in twitter. October 10, 2013


Saturday, November 24, 2012

Screw passion, first become good.. And so good that... - A book review

So Good They Can't Ignore You
Why Skills Trump Passion in the Quest for Work You Love

by Cal Newport. Business Plus. Pages 273 Rating: 10/10



I absolutely loved this book. In fact I have been waiting to read this book from the day Cal published about the book in his website. Cal already writes an awesome blog, which totally changed my views on how to make a remarkable life and now he has written this book.

So, lets get started...

This book debunks the myth of passion, as Cal always been doing and now in a better, stronger and ferociously structured manner. Not only that, he has moved to another step and provide the basic guidelines to make the best of anything (??), and build a remarkable life. 


There are four rules that are featured.

Rule1# Don't follow your passion.
Rule2# Be so good they can't ignore you.
Rule3# Turn down a promotion.
Rule4# Think small, act big.

You should better read the synopsis of these rules in Cal's writing. The point I want to mention is the way how he has presented the case. Its scientific, it feels like you are reading a super interesting journal paper (hard to find, I guess). And when you finally finish the book, it feels like Cal has just whispered into your ears, "Here, I rest my case."

He has a complete accessible organized list of references along with a brief summary of how he has applied these rules to his own life and work. 

It is not sexy, neither romantic and not at all charismatic - the way you can make your life remarkable. it is hard, but it is structured, it is doable and not a vague description how you suddenly become a millionaire or something. That is what this book is all about.

It destroys passion, another good thing that will relieve your mind of the useless task of finding your passion. I mean, not long after this, perhaps finding your passion will be another joke. 

Dude, I am screwed up, I don't know what to do, I am not happy.
Follow your passion, pal. (and they both almost fall down with laughter)

A final word of praise to Cal Newport, "You are so good that nobody can ignore you"

You can buy the book here.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

The Now Habit, unschedule and a relief

I got a relief from the constant overwhelming urge that I should work hard all the time, have no fun and this is the way life is going to be. i tend to put off living with the solace that someday I will be happy. I no longer believe that.

I am reading the book "The Now Habit" by Neil Fiore, and summarizing that with a snapshot of a page here.

This is taken from the sixth chapter of the book. I am human, and not superman.

Note: Since we should work only for 30 minutes a day, here is link on how to learn faster and better. Trust me, if Cal Newport endorses it, it works.


Sunday, October 14, 2012

Why it is hard to do deliberate practice ?

After trying my hands on deliberate practice, deliberately for the first time in the context of learning a software I have found out the following things.

1. You should clearly, and I mean crystal, know what you want.
2. You have to take it one inch at a time (I couldn't help stealing the Al Pacino line here.)
3. It must be designed, or better, planned what you are going to do.
4. It is mentally demanding and therefore you should make yourself free from distractions.

It was not that fun, but I learned something anyway.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Water, water evreywhere...Not a drop to drink

How to find motivation, and the truth behind it in a world full of bookshelves..full of motivational books and a hoard of motivational speakers.

I used to like motivational books, once upon a time. I bought, downloaded and read a lot of them. I tried to follow them, and tried to find my passion so that I can align my career and studies with my passion, and be happy forever. Also, I wanted to be radical, such as leaving a menial job and then following my passion.

This process has been going on from class 11th, that's from 2004 and eight years has passed. I am not saying those books did not help me, but as a matter of fact most of the things were useless. After browsing hundreds of blogs, websites, videos and e-books... I found out a website called Study Hacks.

It changed my perspective and I really started to connect to it. it introduced to me the concept of deliberate practice, related to the 10000 hour rule popularized by Malcolm Gladwell.  It takes deliberate practice to achieve a truly wonderful life. 

I started reading books related to this... Talent is Overrated, The Talent code, Drive and Flow: The Psychology of Happiness. I felt like I have finally found the Holy Grail. 

Meanwhile, I am still working on improving my life. I am not yet successful. But, now I know what it takes to build a truly remarkable life and career. Applying these principles to our lives is not easy, and I have not yet learned, let alone mastered, the art of delibearate practice.

Someday I will. Or, let me put a deadline 'coz a goal without a deadline is still a dream. I will master the art of deliberate practice within the next 365 days. 

What I gained, however, is that I came out from the rut of stupid motivational books. I am not reading any motivational books or watching any videos which talks about passion as something you find out one day just out of nowhere. I am buying the theory of creating passion, the craftsman's manifesto and deliberate practice.

Lets put this into action. 365 Days to a better life. In the meantime, you can google "Study Hacks," "deliberate practice," and "Craftsman's Manifesto."

Life is tough, but I know about deliberate practice.


Sunday, October 7, 2012

Why we will never have immortal songs ?

There are old hindi movie songs that can still blow our mind. Kishore Kumar, Mehmood, Muhammad Rafi and Lata Mangeshkar have always been everyone's favourite. Some songs have been marked as immortal and rightly so, as they still have the capacity to blow our minds after decades of their release. 

Now, the new genre of songs.. I mean from the 90's are hardly recognized as immortal ones. I don't have enough data nor I am qualified enough to comment on the quality of songs to segregate which ones should be immortal or not.

But I have an observation, or may be a gut feeling to explain this. With the rise of internet and youtube, we can see the songs of contemporary movies along with the video from the time they start advertising. What happens is that all the songs are registered on our minds, not only by its melody and words but also as the picturization of it. It happens to me that when I listen to a song without looking at its video, I discover fragments of lyrics or music that is awesome which I have never cared for when watching it with the video.

A a large and mass effect, this phenomenon results in the fact that the popularization of songs are not limited only to the melody and words but also the picturization. Along with that, we have too many songs and too fast access to almost everything.

Therefore, may be we will never have immortal songs or if it is immortal, nay be it is released before the 90s.