Parenting is HARD

Last week marked another first in our parenting journey. It was an annual concert at school and Kids performed for the first time on the stage. It was an emotional moment for us and honestly, I was more nervous than them. I told them to enjoy their little dance but when their eyes were searching for us among so many people I felt the responsibility, fear, and happiness all at the same time. When they found us and smiled at us- that was simply unexplainable, they were just performing for us and that feels awesome. At that moment I felt proud and nervous at the same time.

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Being a parent means you have to be a motivator even when you don’t know what to say. It demands you to stay calm, even when you are at war from inside. It’s honestly not easy to be one. What I realized that kids not only makes you a parent but also a warrior. If you weren’t strong before having kids, I can assure you that parenting will turn you into a warrior.

Solving a fight between siblings and trying to make lunch for them, one of them is pulling your leg asking when lunch will be ready, it takes patience. Cleaning poop anytime anywhere no matter what you are doing, when you are having morning tea, breakfast, dinner, working, or even if you are sleeping, it takes determination. Carrying your sleeping child, his favorite toy and any other thing which your toddler refuses to part with takes physical strength. Standing up for yourself and your parenting decisions to the judge-y moms or relatives, it takes courage. See aren’t you a Warrior already.

Parenting has been a lot harder than I thought it would be. There are days I wish would never end and days I wish would be over before they even started. The day, when your toddler starts a major tantrum on the road and people starts staring at you. And there are days when no matter what you try your child just keeps on screaming.  Those days are exhausting, they test our limits. But somehow, even on those days, we find some comfort in being a parent because at the end of the day nothing counts more than that unconditional love. But, this realization usually comes when the child sleeps and you keep on staring at his innocent face talking to yourself.

Why doesn’t anyone tell you how hard parenting is? We always hear how rewarding it is to raise kids, but no one ever talks about how tough it can be. You might have heard about few months of sleepless nights or how kids take the priority but no one talks about the hard part of parenting. Honestly being the disciplinarian sucks but as a parent, we all have to do it. Staying up all night with your baby who is sick and then being energetic for your other kid on zero sleep is no fun. Meltdowns anywhere are just awful.

Honestly parenting is awesome and amazing BUT, IT IS ALSO “HARD”. It’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever done!

The joy that fills my heart on a daily basis after I see my boys is immense. But I would be lying if I said parenting is easy because it isn’t. So, to all the parents out there, you are not alone.

15 inspiring quotes by Martin Luther King, Jr.

Martin Luther King, one man who gave dreams to millions of people. Because this man lived many men and women are celebrating their lives. Some people are just like blessing to the entire humanity and he was one of them.

Today, we are left with the persuasiveness of his words which are still very relevant and continue to guide us. Here are 15 inspiring lines by MLK.

“Faith is taking the first step even when you can’t see the whole staircase.”

“Out of the mountain of despair, a stone of hope.”

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

“Only in the darkness can you see the stars.”

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“Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into friends.”

 

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“People fail to get along because they fear each other; they fear each other because they don’t know each other; they don’t know each other because they have not communicated with each other.”

“Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education.” 

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“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”

“A man who won’t die for something is not fit to live.”

“We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.”

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And finally, the one which teach us to keep moving forward no matter what——

“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”

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Lace up and RUN

When it comes to running there are people who are just crazy about running, for them running is part of their life. And there are others who think running is not for them, for various reasons. If you are someone who is thinking about running but not able to push yourself hard, here are few more reasons to think about grabbing your shoes and start running.

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When we talk about running everyone thinks about fitness, burning calories, loosing fat. Yes, running is good for heart, body and your overall wellbeing but I am not an expert to talk about all this and I am sure most of you know about it so let’s ditch fitness talks. There is more to running than just fitness, it a sport for all ages.

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Here are some of the reasons apart from health which motivates me to grab my shoes every morning and explore new terrains.

Running makes you mentally strong

Physical strength is indeed what one associate running with but when you challenge yourself with new goals every other day you also train your mind. With running you become your own motivational coach because you have to inspire yourself every day to run and when you win the battle of mind, YOU RUN.

You fight with sore muscles and push for your best run, because every success starts with believing. So, running is a great way to train your brain to be stronger.

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It also trains you to take one step at a time to achieve big goals in life. No matter how good a runner is but you can’t complete a big run unless you plan for every mile. Planning small steps is the key finish a big run and also to achieve big goals in life. Running helps you to face bigger challenges in life by making you mentally strong.

“Running keeps your head up and your mind strong.”

Clear my mind

When your day is busy and you don’t have time to plan even than running helps, it gives you a moment to think. This is my favorite part of running when you disconnect yourself from phone, technology, internet, and every other thing and just be with yourself.

This ‘me time’ is the time to think about what really matter.

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Creativity booster

Not only a moment to think but running also helps in solving problems, relaxing your mind and often helps in bringing creative ideas.

What can be more inspiring than grass tickling your feet and flock of birds fly over your head? When you spend time with nature you feel relaxed and peaceful mind is indeed creative.

Running keeps you calm, active and more stress resistant. And when you are active you tend to see sunny side of the life not only while you run but throughout the day, this helps you to be more creative and productive.

“Running releases more than just sweat”

Connect with others

Running helps you to connect with new people, fellow runners or complete strangers. It encourages you to support other runners, motivate a stranger to finish his run and get inspiration from others.

And the best part is no matter what your goal is when it comes to running everyone is a winner because you compete with yourself.

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Your turn now, share what are your reasons for running and what are you learning from it.

Running is fun and it brings joy to those who appreciate what one learns from running. And if you find yours lace up and start running because that’s what makes the difference.

Happy Running!

 

Story of a Cracked Pot

It’s December and winter has already entered in our gardens, houses, bodies and also bit on our mind. Everything is freezing cold and in this quilts, winter jackets and warm socks are out. There is cracking fire in hearth and unlimited supply of hot beverages because it’s officially cold now. In all this, there is one thing that sooth my senses and warm my heart more than anything else – a good STORY.

Yes, it’s STORY TIME.

An old story with new perspective, with sweet fragrance of flowers and warmth of Sun. Enjoy this refreshing, positive and beautiful story.

Once upon a time somewhere in India there lived a water bearer, he had two large pots, each hung on one end of a stick which he carried across the back of his neck. One of the pots had a crack in it, and while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water at the end of the long walk from the stream, the cracked pot arrived only half full. This went on every day for two years, with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots of water to his master’s house.

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Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishment and saw itself as perfectly suited for the purpose for which it was made. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its imperfection and miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it had been made to do. After two years of what it perceived as bitter failure, it spoke to the water bearer one day by the stream. “I am ashamed of myself and I want to apologize to you.”

“Why?” asked the bearer. “What are you ashamed of?”

“For the past two years, I have been able to deliver only half my load because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your master’s house. Because of my flaws you have to work without getting the full value of your efforts,” the pot said.

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The water bearer felt sorry for the old cracked pot, and out of compassion he said, “As we return to the master’s house, I want you to notice the beautiful flowers along the path.” Indeed, as they went up the hill, the old cracked pot took notice of the sun warming the wildflowers on the side of the path. The pot felt cheered.

But at the end of the trail, the pot still felt bad because it had leaked out half its load, and again it apologized for its failure.

The bearer said to the pot, “Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of your path, but not on the other pot’s side? That’s because I knew about your flaw and took advantage of it. I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back from the stream, you’ve watered them for me. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate my master’s table. If you were not just the way you are, he would not have such beauty to grace his house.”

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Each of us has our unique flaws—we are all cracked pots. But instead of hiding those cracks and feeling bad about it, if we use the wisdom of water bearer we all can create beautiful results like those mesmerizing flowers.

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Great Rewards follow Tough decisions

Recently I attended a session with one of the emerging leaders in Banking Industry. It was more over an informal session wherein, people were allowed to ask all sort of question to the guest and he would share his thoughts based on his experience and knowledge. There were few points which were complete take away for me and would like to share those in my space considering the fact that it might be useful for others.

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When asked, what was that one dream that you think you fulfilled in your life.

He replied that, My life experiences have taught me that there are bound to be ups and downs and it is only family and friends that help tide over difficult times. I went through a personal crisis in 2002 and there was doom and gloom everywhere. Instead of maintaining status quo, I decided to give my entrepreneurial drive a “go”. I traded my corporate comfort for setting up a business of 150 people and ran it for 3 years before divesting it to a large IT company. Soup to nuts teaches one a lot and I think I benefited immensely with that experience both in terms of what to do and what not to do. Most importantly I listened to my heart and fulfilled my aspiration of running my own business.

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This was something very motivating; with his story he told us that – COURAGE is one trait that all great leaders possess. Without courage it’s difficult to stay on right path, take those difficult decisions, be it a battlefield or that business meeting when it comes to important decisions it always boils down to the courage of the leader. Aristotle called courage the first virtue, because it makes all of the other virtues possible. In addition to being the most important human virtue, it is the most important business virtue, as well. Think about it – Is it possible to take risk, innovation, expansion, and Lead people –in absence of COURAGE?

When asked what keeps you going?

Guest said, Almost everything but most importantly when I can make a positive impact in anyone’s life. It’s the fact that I can make difference with my acts keeps me up and running. So we should all come out of that routine mind set up and think what can we do that will make a difference today.

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Your small difference today can give a new perspective to someone else. Reframe your mind from ‘What I can do’ to ‘How I can do it’ and Make-a-Difference in someone’s life. As  Mahatma Gandhi said, “In a gentle way, you can shake the world.”

He also gave a beautiful career advice for everyone.

My advice would be, build depth in your formative years, develop a skill for which you will be known and then branch out to build breadth. Keep challenging the obvious and enhance your knowledge base. The process of building one’s career is fraught with highs and lows. The key here is not to lose heart in times of adversity and have faith in yourself. Most importantly be a rounded personality, have a sense of humor and do not take yourself too seriously. Be a role model in your life for others to follow.”

Honestly, I loved the last part of it the most, Challenge yourself and believe in your abilities to achieve anything you want. But at the same time enjoy your life, live in the moment and make most out of it. Finally as Michael Jordan said, “Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, and others make it happen”, choose which one you would like to associate yourself with.

10 things I have learnt in 23 years

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I am 23. Happy Realization Anjali. 🙂  I might not have my life sorted. I have no idea where I should be and what should I do, but I do have experiences that have taught me things I am pretty proud of. Experiences – that made me who I am today. Here is the list of ten things I have learnt in past 23 years.

  1. Read 

I was never a much of a reader. I never read school books forget anything else. But thanks to my sister, she always insisted me rather forced me to read. She used to tell me all the great things she read and how I should read to feel the exhilaration reading brings. I could never thank her enough for this habit. Because of this I am never alone. NEVER BORED!

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  1. To-do List #FTW

If it gets written, it gets done. No easy way to put it. Helps me maintain timelines. Helps me PRIORITIZE.

  1. Family comes first. ALWAYS and FOREVER!

You might not like them on some days and you’ll miss them to death on some. But they are always there. You can always count on them and you can always go to them and see nothing has changed, they still love you the same.

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  1. Love Yourself

This is not something I have learnt eventually, this might be something I am born with or maybe that’s how I am raised. I have seen people doing things for others they don’t want to. They help people on the cost of themselves, NOT ME! I think about me. I care for me. I will always love me more, all of this doesn’t makes me selfish but makes me more practical.

  1. Let people, things and places go.

Don’t get stuck on these things. People move to different countries. Everybody will get busy with their own lives. Things won’t be the way they have been. Suck it up and move on. You will also move to a different city leaving the place you thought you’ll never leave. Embrace the change and learn to enjoy it.

  1. You don’t have to be a Social Butterfly. 

It is okay to not be in contact with everyone all the time. It is okay to not pick up calls and focus on what is important for you. There might be million ways to connect with people but tell me the point of talking to your neighbor in xyz city when you were 10. No point? Be in the real world not virtual. Actually go out and meet people.

  1. Stop Cribbing.

Constantly complaining about where you are and what you are doing might not take you anywhere. Stop cribbing. If you don’t like what you are doing than go find something you like and do that. You will have to do something if you don’t like something and I don’t think cribbing has helped anyone.

  1. Travel.

Go out and see the world. Leave your cocoon and see what the world has to offer. Do it alone or do it with friends but go and explore how beautiful oceans are. How it feels to wake up and see the sunrise in mountains? How does the flowing water sounds at night? Managing yourself in extreme conditions make life seems pretty simple.

  1. Birthdays are all about people.

I used to think they are about gifts and how much everyone loves you, midnight calls and wishes you get tired replying to, but no. They are about the people you have with you that day. The people you love, if they are not there then nothing could make that day special.

  1.  SAY NO.

If you think you cannot do something, say no. If you cannot be there for someone, tell them. Never lie. Just tell people the truth and don’t make false promises. You don’t have to say yes to everyone who comes to you for something.


About: Anjali Chauhan 12144684_10153602060812954_6765231950367284994_n

Anjali is a Software engineer by profession. She likes travelling, dancing, reading and writing. She recently began her personal blog,  she shares her insights about growing up, happiness, passion, and meaning. Visit her blog or her Twitter page for contact information and more of her work.

From Reactive to Proactive

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What do most of us always do when it comes to facing life? We let people, circumstances take control of us and instead of acting actively we become reactive and react to the situation present in front of us. Mostly we live a reactive life, where in we react to a situation, instead of thinking for a moment and responding in a planned way we let the reaction take control of our action.

While writing your life story do not let someone else hold the pen for you, neither circumstances nor another individual, be proactive.

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Stephen Covey, author “The seven habits of highly effective people” puts it very nicely when he says that, “If you’re proactive, you don’t have to wait for circumstances or other people to create perspective expanding experiences. You can consciously create your own.” Mostly people who are proactive in life are often successful because they don’t let outer circumstances create their life. They create their own life and that is what even you need to do – “Create Your life”.

Without a point of doubt being proactive in life is one thing that we all need to live a successful life. You need to take charge of your life, create a plan and act upon it. People who lack the pro-activity habit tend to be more reactive, seeing themselves as victims of circumstance, unable to change their reactions, thus feeling much less empowered.

“The best way to not feel hopeless is to get up and do something. Don’t wait for good things to happen to you. If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope, you will fill yourself with hope.” – Barack Obama

Plan things in advance, take time to write down certain things, such as your goals, your plans and other important items, this can change the way you think and act. And as Confucius says, “Better light a candle than curse the darkness.” Be proactive and don’t let outside world dominate your life.

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