This story is of Joe. Joe was a busy and hardworking immigrant working in Australia. He worked hard climbing the corporate ladder and was a shining star in his eyes and eyes of his peers. One day while in a meeting he gets a call from an unknown number. He ignores it. After seeing someone desperately call for 5 times, he finally answers the call. “Hello, Joe speaking!” He hears a question from the other end “How are you son?” in a slow but firm voice.
“Oh mother, I am good. I am in a meeting, will call you back in few minutes”, said Joe and disconnected the call and continued with his meeting.
Next day, in the afternoon he gets a call from unknown number again. He answers and before the person on the other end can finish saying something, he blurts “Ahhh, I am busy right now, will call you back soon” and disconnects the call.
After two days, when he checks in to his Facebook account, he see a lot of wall posts and private messages. One message said, “Sorry for your loss Joe”, another read “Heart felt condolences. Your father was a good man. RIP.” The sky crashed on Joe and he felt as if lights have been turned off and he’s sitting in complete darkness. He immediately realised that why his mother called him twice in two days and that he has not returned her call yet. He visualised his mother walking 3 kilometres just to make the phone call from her village without phone lines or mobile phones. He had neither words nor excuses. It was already too late.
He later finds out that the first call he received was when his father became really sick and was still alive and second call was when his father left this world.
This is a tragic story. I can only begin to imagine that what would Joe go through for the rest of his life. There are few lessons from this story but the important and simple lesson being “Call Back” when you said you will. When you promise someone that you will call back or sent an email, do so and do it as promised. Make it a matter of discipline. Make it a matter of choice and do it every time.
You never know how desperately someone is waiting for your call or the information that you can provide. You might not understand completely how much your loved ones miss you and want to hear back from you. Keep on your words on calling back.
I have to admit that I am no saint at this and I miss sometimes calling people back, but I am constantly working on it. Do you call back? Do you do it even more when you don’t need anything from the person at the other end?
This post is part of Improve Your World series of posts and this is post #3 for year 2012.
Ideas are everywhere. We see a thing or two and we get ideas, we watch TV and we get an idea, we read news and we can get an idea about something that we have been working on. We hear a lot of ideas too. In offices and in meetings, we hear a lot of ideas and sometimes they are relevant and sometimes they are not [or at least that is what we think].
Allowing ourselves to generate idea is easy compared to hear other people talk about their ideas. I see this a lot in meeting rooms and offices. An energetic and enthusiastic person comes up with a hot idea on what to do on the project/next bbq or something else and the manager or one of the colleagues would be prompt to intervene and shot the idea or cut it short. Focus is important, but don’t kill the idea. Neither your’s or someone else’s.
Next time when someone proposes an idea, acknowledge the idea and if it is not the appropriate time and the place to discuss it, park it with an aim to come back to discuss that idea further. Rather than just cutting the person in the middle of her sentence and the idea off, give an appropriate reasoning. Add something to the idea that will make it work. Let the creative juices flow within yourself and others.
When you think of an idea next time, rather than just ignoring the idea, acknowledge it. This will allow your brain to bake the idea in your subconscious mind.
I think of myself as an ideas person and I get loads of them. What I have learn’t over the years is not to shut my mind up when ideas are popping. I receive them, write them/note them/record them and then move on with my current activity. I have allowed my mind to keep thinking and sometimes out of the box.
I know and I know you know that right food in the right level of quantities is beneficial to our body. We know that any excessive diet can be detrimental to our health and thus body. Still lot of us at numerous times over indulge and thus creating a negative effect on our bodies [chocolates anyone?].
Similarly we know that Knowledge is Power. Having the right information at the right time empowers us in making the right decisions and coming to appropriate conclusions. One way we can get this knowledge is consuming the right information. But consuming data randomly and over indulgence of information without focus can confuse us, distract us and does not assist in achieving results.
To improve your world in 2012, have some kind of diet routine for the information that you consume. Go on an information diet. Once you form your routine and can feel the benefits for yourself, share the concept of information diet with others.
Information is everywhere around us and we consume information through TV, books, Internet, our music players, e-readers, talking, newspapers, tablet devices, games etc. It is only going to benefit us if we selectively consume the information that is going to benefit us in the near and long term.
By the way, do you remember all the YouTube videos and sports scores that you watched last week, or for that matter yesterday?
This post is part of Improve Your World series of posts and this is post #1 for year 2012.
In 2012 I am determined to improve my world and assist people that I care about. I am determined to learn more and impart what I have learnt [I am a training consultant after all!].
Over the years I have realised that it is the small actions/ideas/habits (good and bad) that have made a lasting impact on my life. For something to stick and made a lasting effect, I need to practice it and practice it regularly. To achieve this I either make a mental note or document these actions/ideas/habits in various formats – from post-it notes to journals to making it part of my daily routine.
Moving forward, I am going to document the matters that improve my world on this blog and share it with the readers as well.
I would encourage readers of this blog to add to the dialogue by telling things that have improved your life. Do this by either commenting here or posting your ideas on your blog/Twitter/Facebook feed. I am going to use the hashtag #IYW.