Saturday, 30 January 2016

Books > A Few of my Favourite Books

Often we read books and forget about them over a period of time. But there are some that stay with us. While these cannot be classified as classics, the wisdom from these books has influenced my life and made me who I am today. It’s been many, many years since I first read them but even today I find myself living by the insights shared in these books.

There are loads of self-help books available for you to start your magical journey of creating whatever you desire. While the book that is right for you will inevitably come your way, I am listing a few that’ll make the process of creation and experimentation easier, faster and a lot of fun.

You Can Heal Your Life by Louise L Hay (Hay House, Rs. 295)
This book is a fabulous introduction to the art of affirmations. Apart from teaching readers how to coin their personal affirmations, the author has listed loads of empowering affirmations that you can use till you get the hang of it. This is the first book that made me realise the importance of every word that I think and speak.

The Secret by Rhonda Byrne (Atria Books, Rs. 550)
One of the latest bestsellers, the highlight of this book is it is a compilation of the words of thinkers, spiritual gurus as well as acclaimed scientists and over a hundred motivational speakers. So even if you are inclined to discounting what one person may say, if you hear so many of them saying the same thing it is bound to make an impact. I also love The Magic and The Power by the same author and team. They go deeper into using love and gratitude as tools to create a beautiful life.

You’ll See It When You Believe It by Dr. Wayne W. Dyer (Quill, Rs. 446)
This book gives a holistic angle to words such words such as “universe” and “transformation” which the author explains as “one song” and “going beyond the form/body”, respectively, by breaking up these words. It gives and in-depth explanation about the power of thoughts and also puts scientific explanation in easy to understand words and examples.

Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach (Bantam Books, Rs. 796)
A beautiful book for women, it has a page for every day of the year. But don’t be surprised if you can’t wait to finish the book much sooner because it touches upon every aspect of being a woman – from career to home and fashion to cooking – all this while expressing your own unique style while staying in sync with the spiritual laws of the universe.

The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success by Dr. Deepak Chopra (Rider Books, Rs. 125)
This book is very simply written and may sound simplistic. But if you diligently apply these laws you’ll begin to see amazing results in no time.

Many of my friends and associates read these same books and were probably not very impressed by them, or even if they were, they went back to living their lives like earlier. But I believe that if something is true for one human being it is true for all. And with this intention I applied most of what I read into my own life and I saw similar results. I’m not getting into how these books helped me understand our spiritual texts much better, maybe they even made a base for me to pick up books like the Bhagvad Gita that I may not have read when I did.

I can only list some of the books that I loved and learnt a lot from. But it is up to you to actually pick them up and gain from them. If you have other books on similar lines that you absolutely adore, please do drop me a line.

Insight > Live Your Greatest Life

If you had Aladdin’s lamp, what would be the three wishes that you’d ask for? And if I told you that the same wishes can be granted to you even without having the magic lamp, and you needn’t limit yourself to only three of them, then what would you ask for? No, I’m not wasting your time by talking about fairytales. I am introducing you to the world of affirmations – the art of fulfilling your deepest desires by using the power of your mind. When I first heard of this concept, almost a decade ago, I loved the idea of getting whatever I wished for, but wasn’t quite sure if it would work. Or rather, I wasn’t sure if it would work without any voodoo or black magic. I only took it up as an experiment and till date I am creating my life exactly the way I want, step-by-step and day-by-day. 

Here’s how to do it. The first step is to coin an affirmation of whatever you want to manifest in your life. An affirmation is a positive statement in the present perfect tense. For instance, if you want to be happy in love, your affirmation will be: I am happy in love. Why you need to affirm as if you’ve already got what you want actually has a scientific explanation. We studied in elementary science that all matter is made up of energy. Thus, even a wooden table is actually a moving mass of molecules and atoms, and when these molecules and atoms are further broken up it is discovered that everything in this universe is made up of one single type of energy which appears in different forms, both animate and inanimate. To actually understand how it all works you’ll need to delve into Quantum Physics which is obviously beyond the domain of this article. The bottom line, however, is that all this energy is in constant motion, and it vibrates at the same frequency as our thoughts. Hence, we can actually create ripples in the energy field of the universe just by using our thoughts. Rather than knowing why it works, let me tell you how to make it work for you. So for now, let’s get our focus back on getting whatever it is that you desire - whether monetary or emotional; a change in your personal or professional life situation; or even healing your body. Here is a step-by-step guide of using your thoughts to create actual life situations.

1.     Know what you want
More often than not we are not even aware of what we really want. Smita, 30, a banker, is bored with her job and desperately wants a break but can’t think of an alternative career option. Her case is synonymous with zillions of other situations where one knows more about what we don’t want rather than what we actually desire. Therefore, the very first step is to figure out exactly what you desire. One of the simplest ways is by using the green-eyed monster. The moment you feel the pangs of envy you can immediately convert it into a positive experience of knowing what you want. Another powerful exercise is to start writing a journal. Just start pouring out your thoughts on paper: from all that you hate to all that you wish and desire. You’ll be surprised by all the negative thoughts in your head that you weren’t even aware of. All you need to do is to convert the things that you hate into positive affirmations. For instance, if you feel “I hate my job, my boss drives me up the wall, my love life sucks” all you need to affirm is “I am doing a job that I love, I have a fabulous rapport with my boss and my colleagues, my life is better than my fondest dreams”.  Of course, things don’t turn around overnight, but the process has certainly begun because how can you achieve anything if you don’t even know what it is in the first place.

2.     Affirm
How often have you experienced a sense of déjà vu or the fact that you have actually willed a certain situation to occur? That’s because you will always see the manifestation of your deeply held beliefs. Therefore affirmations become effective when you actually believe in what you’re affirming. So once you’ve coined your affirmations do anything you can to believe in them - you can write down them till you’re convinced, say them out loud in front of a mirror, or simply feel how you’d feel once you get it. For example, if you’re affirming to get a promotion, close your eyes and imagine your boss announcing that you’ve got a promotion - feel the joy that you’d feel when you get the news of your promotion, feel the excitement in sharing the news with your family and friends.

3.     Remove all negative thoughts
The main trap that you have to look out for on this journey of being positive is that of being pseudo-positive. You may think that you are being positive but deep down you are still bound by various negative beliefs. This is quite natural too, considering that we are conditioned with all sorts of limiting beliefs since the time we’re born. And although NOW is the time to change your thoughts, it does take time for the new set of thoughts to become your beliefs. Now that you have started making the effort, do not stop mid-way. This is the final test.  If there is something for which you have been affirming for a while that still hasn’t manifested just answer the question for yourself – “why is it not happening?”. You’ll immediately start justifying why not. If you’ve been affirming to become a model you may come up with answers like “I can’t make it”, “maybe I don’t look good enough”, “I’m too fat”, “there’s too much competition”, “it’s too tough to get a break in the modelling circuit” .. these are actually all the beliefs that are holding you back and this is what you’re experiencing. But once again when you’re aware of these thoughts you can easily convert each and every one of these statements into positive affirmations like, “I look great”, “I have got an unbelievable entry into the world of modelling”, “I enjoy facing the camera”, “assignments are pouring in”, and so on.

4.     Use pictures to reinforce your belief and feel good factor, create a vision board or a treasure map.
Shakti Gawain, author of Creative Visualisation suggests creating a treasure map to reinforce your affirmations. It’s a fun process. Just take a bunch of lifestyle magazines and cut out pictures of all that you’d like to see manifest in your life whether it is a cruise holiday or the owner of your dream home. You can either put it all up on a pin board or create a scrap book if you like to keep your desires to yourself. “Since I like travelling, the wallpaper on my computer is of the next destination that I’d like to go to,” says Sabina Kapoor. “It almost always works. While I was working for a travel magazine I really needed a break and wanted to head off to the hills. I just placed a picture of a view from the balcony of a house in the hills. And guess what, my next assignment was to review a new resort, and uncanny as it may sound, the view from the balcony of my room was very similar to the one in my wallpaper. When I was back at work I changed wall paper to a gorgeous beach. And, you guessed it right again.. I was off to Thailand soon after!”

5.     Be thankful for the small miracles that you’ve already started experiencing.
Try using these affirmations in situations for which you can see results fast enough. As you see them manifesting for yourself your conviction and confidence in using them to create almost anything in your life will increase. Since we’re working on the principal that whatever you focus on expands, focussing on all that’s already working in your life will increase it. “When I used to focus on all the bills that had to be paid I felt as if I was only earning to pay other people,” says Shantanu, 45, writer. “But ever since I started focussing on my income, I was amazed that new sources of income just kept opening up for me. And even if I continued to pay the same mount of bills, I was happy that I could afford to pay for all that I wanted. It’s all just about attitude!”

When you get the hang of how affirmations work you can use them to create almost anything in your life. Whether these affirmations work or not depends entirely on your belief and experience. But the least that a positive mindset can do is to encourage you to take the first step towards living your dream life.