Work-life balance: Quantum vs Quality of time

Everyone knows that work-life balance is important to be happy. It’s one of the criteria people look for when finding a new job or switching companies (unless one is desperate for a job).

A lot of companies adjust their policies to help in achieving a good balance between work and personal lives of their employees. Because, research and surveys say that employees’ efficiency greatly increases when they hit this magic balance.

Some of the corporate companies even pay their employees an extra allowance to help them in this regard.  But, we still see a lot of folks complaining about stress and broken work-life balance.

why is it so difficult to achieve work-life balance when everyone understands it’s importance?

Answer is simple: We can’t achieve it because there’s absolutely no such thing as work-life balance. It’s just a marketing concept created by some PR firm or  a research firm.

It comes from the concept that work-life and personal-life are two separate pieces of a cake. This gives rise to the idea that with a little effort and adjustment the pieces can be balanced. People keep making efforts towards cutting the perfect pieces so as to balance them and fail.

We fail because we forget that they can’t be two separate pieces – they are always connected to each other. We are the medium of connection – as we have only one brain or one mind.

We are living beings not machines. We can’t forget work the minute we step out of office and behave like it has forget personal issues the moment we start working.

Unlike a machine we have a heart too. ( Assuming we are yet far from creating a machine with a mind/heart that works exactly like any living being).

Does a machine grieve when a neighboring machine stops working?  Does a machine care about what other machines say or what the customers say?

A machine can be turned on at anytime and get the same quality and quantity of output if given same amount of time. But, Can humans do that?

Then, why do we focus only on the amount of time when discussing work-life balance?

Most of us forget a basic yet important aspect of this balance – Quality.

People just focus on the quantity, the amount of time spent working vs life outside work. But, totally ignore the quality of time spent on both sides.

Doesn’t it actually make more sense to focus on quality first rather than quantity?

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Hope is as weakening as fear..

Fear stops you.. fear breaks you.. fear limits you.. so does hope..

Hope keeps you waiting… Hope keeps you breaking piece by piece.. hoping that things would change on their own leaves you with no enrgy to take action.

There’s no right time but this moment.

 

The illusion of knowledge – An enemy or an obstacle?

“The greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance—it is the illusion of knowledge.”

Daniel J. Boorstin

“The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge”

— Stephen Hawking

http://www.zenthinking.net/blog/the-illusion-of-knowledge

willdurant1-2x

Keep moving forward, let nature guide you

Keep moving forward in life without fear, knowing that the journey is as important and sacred as life itself.  In your journey, wherever you are headed, realize that in this creation there exists an inseparable bond between the man and the soil (the earth).

Look beyond the obvious. Don’t neglect nature by thinking that what lies under those quivering steps of yours is just a handful of soil. You may reach skies, build skyscraper, live in high rise buildings but remember that you are still standing on the same soil and you are just a grain compared to the vastness of the earth.

Even great dictators fell and have become one with the soil. How strong can common folks like us be? Those who thought they are greater than nature and the earth. Ruling great kingdoms, yielding the greatest of powers, where are those dictators now? Realize that we are mortals, are time bound and one day we will be united with this soil.

Mother nature presides over the world as a great energy connecting everything that exists. From nothingness life forms evolved under the guidance and support of nature around us. Over millions of years, we evolved from instinctive to intellectual beings. If you think (human) intellect is infinite and unprecedented then you must realize the power of nature, one who has brought this intellect into existence.

This is an excerpt from a poem by a great Telugu language poet (Pen name: Ande Sri). The whole poem is enlightening and a condensed knowledge of the world.

It’s also beautifully woven both lyrically and musically.  But, it’s a lengthy one. So, I’ll post it in short pieces.

One interesting fact about Mr. Ande Sri, is that he is not a writer because he can’t write and has no formal education. He is one called as  an Äashu Kavi”meaning a speaking poet. A literary art form where the poet instantaneously (or preconceived) sings a poem in front of an audience.

I’ve given a YouTube link to his rendition of the poem.

I’ve tried (not my best) to transliterate and provide meaning of a couple of stanzas from the poem that connects every human to nature and urges everyone to realize and respect nature.

పావనమైనదీ జీవన యానం,
paavanmainadi jeevana yaanam
[sacred is the life's journey]
పడనీ అడుగులు ఎటురా పయనం.
padanee adugulu eturaa payanam.
[keep moving your feet wherever you are headed]

Meaning: 

Keep moving forward in life without fear, knowing that the journey is as important and sacred as life itself.

మట్టికి మనిషికి సృష్టిలోన, 
mattiki manishiki srushtilona,
[soil and man in this creation] 
విడిపోనీ చుట్టరికమున్నది కనుమది. 
vidiponi chuttarikamunnadi kanumadi. 
[inseparable bond exists realize this]

Meaning:

In your journey, wherever you are headed, realize that in this creation there exists an inseparable bond between the man and the soil (the earth).

తడబడు అడుగుల కింద ఉన్నదీ,
tadabadu adugula kinda unnadi 
[trembling / quivering steps lying under is] 
పిడికెడు మట్టే అనుకోకు. 
pidikedu matti anukoku. 
[(just) a handful of soil, don't think so] 
ఆ మట్టిపైన ఎంతెత్తులకెదిగినా, 
aa mattipina enthetthulakadiginaa 
[on that soil however high you may climb/grow] 
నీవే పిడికెడని మరచిపోకు. 
neeve pidikedani marachipoku. 
[you are (just) a handful, don't forget (this)]

Meaning:

Look beyond the obvious. Don’t neglect nature by thinking that what lies under those quivering steps of yours is just a handful of soil. You may reach skies, build skyscraper, live in high rise buildings but remember that you are still standing on the same soil and you are just a grain compared to the vastness of the earth.

మహానియంతలు మట్టిలో కలిసిరీ, 
mahaniyanthalu mattilo kalisiree, 
[great dictators absorbed into the soil] 
మామూలేరా మనమెంతా? 
maamuleraa manamenthaa? 
[common folks, how tough/strong can we be?]

Meaning:

Even great dictators fell and were claimed by this soil. How strong can common folks like us be? Those who thought they are greater than nature and the earth. Ruling great kingdoms, yielding the greatest of powers, where are those dictators now? Realize that we are mortals, are time bound and one day we will be united with this soil.

యుక్తికి ప్రాణము పోసిన, 
yuktiki praanamu posina, 
[to intellect given life (such) ] 
మహాశక్తిగ తానై ఉన్నదీ ప్రకృతి. 
mahashaktiga thaanai unnadee prakruti. 
[a great energy / power is (of) nature]

Meaning:

Mother nature presides over the world as a great energy connecting everything that exists. From nothingness life forms evolved under the guidance and support of nature around us. Over millions of years, we evolved from instinctive to intellectual beings. If you think (human) intellect is infinite and unprecedented then you must realize the power of nature, one who has brought this intellect into existence..

 

 

Combined stanzas, Telugu Language:

పావనమైనదీ జీవన యానం,
పడనీ అడుగులు ఎటురా పయనం. 
మట్టికి మనిషికి సృష్టిలోన,
విడిపోనీ చుట్టరికమున్నది కనుమది.

తడబడు అడుగుల కింద ఉన్నదీ ,
పిడికెడు మట్టే అనుకోకు. 
ఆ మట్టిపైన ఎంతెత్తులకెదిగినా 
నీవే పిడికెడని మరచిపోకు.

మహానియంతలు మట్టిలో కలిసిరీ,
మామూలేరా మనమెంతా?
యుక్తికి ప్రాణము పోసిన 
మహాశక్తిగ తానై ఉన్నదీ ప్రకృతి.

 

YouTube Link to the rendition of the poem by the Author, Mr. Ande Sri, himself.

 

Another link to the poem with no video, just the voice:

We are all just void pointers

“All beings are void pointers returned by the same function just typecasted differently”

@cdn-ndtv https://i.gadgets360cdn.com/large/amazon_family_1493991253614.jpg?output-quality=70&output-format=webp
Man, woman and a baby
void *mate(male, female)
{
   if (is_fertilized(egg)) {
     delay_range(8-10 months);
    return offspring;
   } else {
      cleanup(uterus);
      return NULL;
   }
}

int world_everyday()
{
  void *new_life;
  new_life = mate(male, female);
  current_being = (casting_type *) new_life;
}

 

[1] Void pointer – https://www.geeksforgeeks.org/void-pointer-c/

[2] Functions – https://www.webopedia.com/TERM/F/function.html

[3] Typecasting – https://techterms.com/definition/typecasting

“NULL STACK: Stack of items that’s Not so Useful for Living your Life”

Birds around us – India

The most common birds are the most commonly ignored ones. People tend to ignore the beautiful, complex, skillful and interesting beings around us just because they are spotted easily. I’m going to give  you a peek into the world of a few common birds around us.

Here’s a common myna.

DSCN4944_2k_fb
Common Myna

It’s fun spending time watching birds – it reminds me that the planet doesn’t belong to me. I’m one among a million species that are sharing it – only difference is that they are more responsible than I am. They don’t destroy the nature around them instead they celebrate it.
They take only what they need – they live and let others live – while I don’t.

Black Kite – Agara Lake – Bangalore

Black kite

Vernacular names:

Telugu – Gadda / Gradda / Nalla Gradda ( నల్ల గ్రద్ద )

Hindi – Cheel ( चील )

Black kites are seen everywhere in India. They are the most common raptors, seen in large numbers close to human settlements.

Since we usually see them flying high in the sky or sitting on a tall structure we just see a black colored bird. But, we don”t get a chance to see how they actually look such as their plumage – the patterns and gradients.

So, here’s a close up shot of a black kite perching on a lower branch of a tree above a small stream. Observe the patterns and colors on the bird’s wings and the majestic look.

DSCN5044_10_16_9px
Black Kite

 

For a long time now

Once we used to be inseparable,
You were always with me, as if you were running through my body…

I always tried my best to be with you as long as I could.. I was never worried about time or place..
I never felt the need to ask you where you came from..
Whenever you left me alone I just wondered where would you be and what would you be doing.. .. but I never questioned if you were coming back.. because I knew that you would be there the moment I needed you..
I never asked you what do you do when you were not with me..
I used to be so happy and think this could be it.. to be with you, could be the purpose of my life…
But now, it seems like the distance between us been growing..
You don’t seem to be around even in the times I needed you the most…
It feels like there is a million bees buzzing in my head…
I walk like a zombie among the chaos of everyday life… everything seems blurred and
I’m losing my head and can’t focus on anything..
My eyes are at war with the lids.. and losing it..

For a long time now, you are not around..
I need you now more than ever..

Once you were always with me even in the places where they hated to see you..

I know, I took you for granted and I was wrong..

You think I love my mobile more than you, but that’s not true..
I know you don’t like to see me with Facebook or WhatsApp, you think they are bad influence but that’s social networking .. I’m a social animal.. I hope you understand..

Sleep, please come to me..
I promise I’ll treat you the way you deserve..

let’s reunite.. and celebrate our celestial relationship for I think you are from heaven..

You must be the heaven itself coz it feels so when I’m with you..

Sleep, I never asked you if you were coming back..
But this time, I have to, because…

For a long time now.. I’ve been missing the morning meeting..

You know where to find us..
Yes, us, Insomnia is here too and says “not leaving unless you show up..”

Yours,
RK

The eternal fear of being wrong…

After writing a couple of articles I stopped as I was afraid that my thoughts were half-baked and momentary…

Posting the momentary thoughts on the blog would make them stay there forever (for a long time)

Also, may cause confusion to the reader… My intention was to just dump all my thoughts somewhere hoping to clear my head and get some structure to my thoughts in doing so.

Isn’t that a futile exercise? How can I get rid of thoughts while working on them?

The irony of life is that fear stops us from doing things that we want to and the same fear motivates us to do things that we would not otherwise do.

I think we are more afraid of the consequences of being wrong than just realizing we may / will be wrong to pursue an idea or an action.

Because the consequence could be losing time, money,  friends, partners, what is or could be.

Is that fear valid? is there any fear that is valid?

What is fear in its basic form – a pure emotion?