Why do we need more Linus Paulings ?

“Do not let either the medical authorities or the politicians mislead you. Find out what the facts are, and make your own decisions about how to live a happy life and how to work for a better world.” -Linus Pauling

Few months ago I was in a meeting with one renowned research professor.
We were walking and talking simultaneously to go from one building to another building.
It was about half a mile of walking to go from one building to another, so he decided to drive. Once we reached the parking lot, I saw a $10 bill laying on the ground. I told him that there is a $10 bill laying on the ground.
Without any second thought, he replied, “if it was a $10 bill somebody else would have already picked it up.”
I was behind him so I slowed down, I ignored what he just said, stepped back, picked up a $10 bill and put it into my pocket.
We got in the car and reached our destination, another building.
We separated immediately after we got in the building.
I had to stay on the ground floor and he had to go to the 3rd floor.
I greeted him saying ‘bye’ as he went towards the elevator.
I had to use the restroom so when I was in the restroom, I took out that $10 bill and looked very carefully on both sides.
I asked myself, “is it a real bill?”
It was a real $10 bill.
At that moment I realized whoever the person is, famous or successful or with a couple of PhDs after the name, everybody lives with certain limitations.
This renowned professor has produced many theories from his lab, he has published some influential peer reviewed journal articles, but I realized, each one of his theories and publications might have some sort of limitations.

I’m absolutely not judging him, he is phenomenal, a great human being and a great scientist.
I really admire him as a great mind, a creative research scholar, and, of course, he has contributed a lot for the scientific community.
He inspires us everyday, no doubt about it.
What I’m saying is, we all have self awareness inside us, at some point in life it matures and helps to shape our lives.
But the only thing is we have to work to grow it.

Every human being is relative in this world so that we can’t just trust and follow someone blindly.
The amazing thing is that we become more self aware when we self indulge in the activities of our second choice which is little far from one’s expertise.
Self-indulgence, especially little far from one’s core expertise, shines our intuition and explores our inner awareness and character in very different ways.

One of my heroes in my life is Linus Pauling.
After reading his childhood, schooling, and what he achieved, I was wondering how one person could be that of significance and inspiration for all of us.
One thing that intrigued me is that Linus Pauling used to mop the floors when he was in school.
He worked in a grocery store to survive, he also worked as an apprentice machinist.
That reminds us how humble his beginning was.

Up to now in my life, I’ve seen and experienced some special people, who are richer intellectually, but many are bankrupt in emotions.
I’ve also seen and worked with some jerks with a couple of PhDs after their name. I’m sure they are not going to be remembered as a good human being in the future even if they accomplished something intellectually.
In essence, humanity comes before intellect.
I’ve also seen and experienced quite a few richer people in emotions but bankrupt in intellect.
To be honest, I’ve seen many people who are moderate in both faculties, in general they are good, ordinary, and common everyday people.
But I’ve rarely seen and experienced richness in both intellect and emotions.
Linus Pauling falls in this category, at least, for me.
As a result of this unique personality, he received the highest recognition on earth, the Nobel prize in both faculties.
He got the Nobel prize in chemistry in 1954, one of the pinnacle of intellectual richness.
He also got the Nobel prize in peace in 1962, one of the pinnacle of emotional richness.
He became a peace activist and a vocal proponent against any kind of warfare in the world.

He is one of four people to have won more than one Nobel Prize, only a person to get it unshared in two distinctly different areas.

The question that came in my mind is how did he become such a towering figure in intellect as well as in emotions.

When he was 9 years old, he read the Bible and Darwin’s Origin of species.
He got lost in the wonder of nature by studying many things that interested him like the study of insects and the study of minerals.
He had a habit of self indulgence whatever he liked.
When he was 14 years old, the fascination of chemistry engulfed him completely.
He said, “I was simply entranced by chemical phenomena, by the reactions in which substances, often with strikingly different properties, appear; and I hoped to learn more and more about this aspect of the world.”
He was intrigued by the mystery of chemistry and devoted his life to Chemistry.

Linus Pauling was not a child prodigy.
He became what he was by his habit of self indulgence on things that interests him.
Around his habit of self-indulgence, he built the skill of self-awareness.
Once he said, “I made use of the college library by borrowing books other than scientific books, such as all of the plays by George Bernard Shaw, the writing of Edgar Allan Poe. The college library helped me to develop a broader aspect of life.”

Many of us have no idea that self-awareness is also a skill that we can develop by reading George Bernard Shaw and Edgar Allan Poe.

Aristotle, the great philosopher, said some 24 hundred years ago that excellence and lasting happiness depend on our ability to find out our intermediate position that is equal from each of the extremes.

When we think of physical pleasure like sex, food, alcohol, smoking; he also said that we should take middle ground between overindulgence and abstinence.
In reality indulgence is a lot different from overindulgence.
Like Aristotle, Buddha also taught his students to pursue the middle path to avoid the two opposing extremes.
Similarly even Confucius, another great philosopher said the same, middle ground always leads to mental equilibrium and a harmonious social order.

Self-awareness is actually knowing the two extremes in our lives.

Many times in our life we try to become intelligent, that’s good but we lack emotion and awareness.
In the real world we have to compensate for the lack of intellect with more emotion, peace, and awareness.

Once awareness replaces intellect, we forget about perfection and focus only on progression.
Progression is simply the compounding of minor improvements, that’s what Linus Pauling followed throughout his life.

Awareness and intelligence sometimes work as light and shadow, brighter the light darker the shadow.
There are many things in life like love, hate, birth, death which were the same thousand years ago and still the same now, but what is different is how they evolve every single day.
This falls into the category of understanding of humanity.
We understand this better when intelligence and awareness are mixed.

Many thousands years ago, the Taoist philosopher, Lao-tzu wrote that the path to wisdom is subtraction of all unnecessary activities.
He said, “to attain knowledge, add things everyday but to attain wisdom subtract things everyday.
Self indulgence, devotion, and meditation invite awareness in different settings which are far from formal education but, as Lao-tzu said, they help to subtract things in our lives to attain wisdom.
Linus Pauling’s parents did not push him to study chemistry or any other self indulgent activities even though they supported him later.

Linus Pauling not only became the elite mind of science but also the serene mind of humanity.
He understood human life very clearly, he hated warfare, crime, and suffering in human life.
It’s so simple to understand that when our life is more important than our principles we sacrifice our principles. But if our principles are more important than our life we sacrifice our life.
This insight had a profound effect on Linus Pauling so he developed an intense desire to do something with human life and lived it by principles.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina

Ramitta, I’ve not received your email yet.

“It is not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves.” – Sir Edmund Hillary

I asked her name.
She said, “Ramitta.”
I asked, “What exactly is this work that you are doing?”
She said, “I’m training to be a magician.”
She also added without stopping that she wants to be one of the greatest magicians in the world.
Again, I asked her age.
She said that she was 13 years old.
She looked very energetic, excited, and happy during her performance.
Her face was so confident that it seemed like she was stealing all the attention from the audience.
She looked pretty focussed when she was playing with three coke bottles with two hands, I was seeing a very bright caliber about her future magician career.
In the meantime, I also noticed that she was not able to do every single time, she was struggling in some attempts. She was purely an amatuer.

She was in the street and attracting the passers-by for small money to survive. I gave her a 20 rupees bill (Indian currency, a quarter in US currency).
She used to look constantly straight in my eyes, probably because I was the one giving the highest amount of money in the small crowd of around 15 people. Most of the money I saw were only coins.
That was a small poor rural city of India near Nepal border. I’ve seen extreme unbearable poverty in many such rural Indian cities.
Many people around her in the show were not that amazed as I was, because that might be an usual everyday thing for them, but not for me.
When she said that she wanted to be one of the greatest magicians in the world, nobody was judging her because she was just 13 years old. If that would have been said by an old adult, I guess, everybody would mock her, would laugh at her.
The advantage of a child performer: all the audience were only smiling, shaking their heads, and enjoying themselves.
She told her desire as a pristine truth from the bottom of her heart in front of the audience: “I wanted to be one of the greatest magicians in the world.”
I was seeing something else with this statement but I abandoned my overthinking.
Let’s be honest, at age 13, nobody lies regarding their future aspirations because they don’t have experience with how life unfolds every single day.

After the show, everybody left, people didn’t care much.
I stayed a little longer.
When everybody was gone, I asked her about her school and family.
She said that she dropped school without finishing grade five.
Her dad disappeared suddenly, her family had no clue what happened to her dad.
Due to this unbearable loss in her family, her mom became sick and was under medication.
She said that her mom is depressed.
I asked her, “Do you know what depression is?”
“I don’t know but the doctor said so,” she added.
“My mom has to take medicine everyday and we don’t have money for that. I do this show in the street for medicine and food. She always loves to stay inside the house all the time. Most of the time she murmurs and says- there is threat and danger outside for us.”
I could guess what that means.

I said, “Ramitta, always perform your magic work, keep doing it regularly, entertain more and more people whenever you can. Take more training from your resource person whoever taught you if you can. Don’t give up the magic work, forget about the number one magician in the world at this time that’s not under your control. Just do magic work consistently.”
I didn’t want to see her in the track of depression with the “number one magician tag in the world.”
I gave her another 100 rupees bill (Indian currency ) and left.
She was smiling and waving at me.
Suddenly, something unusual came into my mind, I turned back, approached her again and gave a piece of paper in her hand.
I told her, “Ramitta, you don’t know me but this is my email address. I know you cannot read this. I tell you this-if you perform your magic work everyday for 89 days regularly, I will send you 5000 rupees (indian currency). Find somebody who can read and can use a computer and tell him or her to write me an email on your behalf that you did magic work every single day for 89 days. If you didn’t find any people to show your magic work, just do it for yourself at home. Do not skip any day.”
Remember, if nobody is around to see the magic, just do it for yourself, have fun just for you, this will hone your game.
“Trust me, I will send you 5000 rupees (Indian currency) and I will be one of your well wishers forever,” I reiterated.
My intention was a little bit different, anyway I’m a scientist by profession, so one additional small experiment, I wanted to develop new neural connections in her brain regarding her passionate magic work in 89 days so that she will never give up her magic process.
I don’t want to go into detail about the science behind new neural connections and neuroplasticity here, maybe next time.

Finding a passion as an amatuer is just the beginning, it’s like dating with as many as we can, developing the passion is harder, it’s a commitment, it’s like marriage after dating many.
And, deepening on it is a lifelong process, it’s like having kids and settlement after marriage.
Additionally, the stage of development is the stage of deliberate practice but deepening on the craft is just effortless flow.
When we reach the deepening stage we can craft our products regularly raising grandchildren on the side.

But I will tell you this: if we practice anything new for at least 89 days every single day, we create new habits and that sticks with us forever.
Once a habit sticks with us, we only need vision and grit, both are actually the power of perseverance. This is how excellence follows in our lives.
I have a personal experience on this but let’s leave this for next time.
Each of us as a human being has a lot of weaknesses, everyone succeeds by picking one strength and honing it regularly day in and day out.
We have to craft this strength as a lifelong process.
If Ramitta constantly engages her mind with her magic process, I believe, she won’t go the same path of depression as her mom.

My head was still spinning with the word depression. I don’t know why? I’ve seen this insane disease in so many of my close friends and family members recently.
In the meantime, I also did a little bit of digging to know why this depression is growing alarmingly.

My great grandfather, my grandfather, and even my father’s generation didn’t have this depression thing, at an alarming rate at present . Why is it so behemoth, suddenly, from our generation?
I found something very unique.
The aforementioned, my previous generations, always remained busy in farming, they used to work from sunrise to sunset in farmland, house chores, herding, livestock.
They were poor financially, long physical labor work on farmland was required to survive, but still they didn’t develop depression.
They were happy with the process of their busyness even though there was no guarantee of their agricultural products.
Sometimes, due to bad weather; sometimes, due to pests; sometimes, due to drought and other natural disasters; all of their crops were demolished.
Sometimes, due to seasonal epidemics, all of their cows and goats died.
But still they never stopped doing whatever they were doing, their work was their life, they were happy and busy in their process.
They showed no symptoms of depression whatsoever.
They always had a nice sleep at night.

Pabloo Picaso was one of the greatest artists of human generations.
He produced more than two art works per day in his artist life. If we count the total number of his art products, he produced thousands and thousands of artworks during his art career.
Because he always loved the process of crafting art more than the final products, otherwise, these many arts were almost impossible to produce by one artist.
But surprisingly, he has only a little over one hundred master art pieces out of thousands and thousands he produced.
Again, because he loved the process rather than the final art products, suddenly about 100 became masterpieces without his notice.
He never aspired to produce masterpieces only, he gave his best sincere effort for each of his art creations. Those masterpieces were just the most liked products by people of his continuous process.

If we love the process of any endeavor throughout our lifetime, we never become depressed in our lives.

We don’t produce our results, results are produced by the process that we are involved in.
Devotion to the process is meditation, that’s why we don’t get depressed.
It can be anything that we are pursuing.

One of my friends’ dad, Rick, has been driving trucks for the last 20 years.
Whenever he finishes driving for the day, he always sends a beautiful flower as a message to one of his family members.
I was interested to meet him, so, one day I met him and asked, “why do you do this?”
He replied, “isn’t this the way to live a life?”
“Otherwise, we get depressed in life because we all do the same mundane repetitive work every single day whatever it is. Sending one different flower each day to one of my family members not only makes me a completely different person but also stimulates the receiver.” he added.
I became speechless.
I reflected on myself, my habits, and my way of living life up to now.
What do I do immediately after I get up from bed?
Well, I grab my phone and watch cat videos in tik-tok.
I open facebook first thing after I get up from bed and I lose my control.
I do these things and somebody or something will control me and my time.
Somebody’s pictures, somebody’s likes, or somebody’s email is controlling me all the time.
After a certain time, this habit becomes perennial and I lose focus. I no longer entertain other people’s activities on screen anymore, I think about my own life, I’ve done nothing concrete, and finally I start to feel depressed.
I wish I could have sent one flower to one of my family members immediately after I got up from the bed.
Do you think that Elon Musk and Tony Robbins grab their phone first thing in the morning after getting up from the bed?
I doubt it.
They control their lives themselves first before being controlled by anybody or anything else.

Nobody owes us anything so that we are free to do whatever we want.
But most of the time, we don’t do anything, even if we do, we anticipate the result first, not the process.
This is one of the biggest reasons for depression in our generations.

In reality, we invite depression when we constantly judge others.
If we only fantasize on the bed rather than doing five push-ups and five squats, then depression certainly follows us.
Depression also appears when we constantly compare ourselves to others.
Nowadays we have multiple ways to compare, this is the age of facebook and twitter.
Depression appears at some point when we focus on external things more rather than our internals.
If our goals end as our internals; not only depression but all the violence, obesity, illness, and greed will disappear.
If we deny our internals knowingly or unknowingly, our emotions will erupt in some other uglier forms.
Depression is just one of them.
The person who doesn’t have time to understand his or her internals by devoting 30 minutes physical activity or 30 minutes meditation suffers the most from depression.
Our life always leaves clues to us, those who are chasing only for externals bleed the most internally in life.

Depression comes when we try to live the same year 75 times and call it a life, as said by Robin Sharma.

Remember, depression is nothing but a byproduct when we don’t have any process to make our own product.

Scientifically speaking, there is a wide-acting neurotransmitter, serotonin, which if deficient in our body, has a high chance of depression.
The very fundamental and interesting point regarding serotonin is to be noted: the head brain produces only 5 % of serotonin.
Very few people are aware about this, the rest of the 95 % serotonin is produced in the gut, that’s why it is also called “the second brain’.
The gut is nothing but a gastrointestinal tract which is the long tube that starts at the mouth and ends at the back passage-anus.
Poor gut hygiene and poor gut-brain communication is directly or indirectly related to depression.

If we devote our life in any process to make either a product or service, we are less likely to suffer from depression.
This looks complicated but doable and easy.
Complicated in the sense we should be really aware about our activities in life.
Doable means developing a small process that engages our mind constantly rather than a final product.

This is one of my favorite sayings from Peter Drucker: what gets measured gets managed.
Measure your life by process, your product itself gets managed.

Remember, process is not a noun, it’s a verb.

By the way, until now I’ve not received any email from Ramitta.
I can only wish her all the best.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina

My one thing when I was covid positive.

Saying no to multiple things can be the ultimate self-care. -Claudia Black

Last two weeks were really crucial for me, an important part of my self-nurturing and self-discovery in my life.
I was covid positive and my whole family was covid positive including my youngest two and half years old.
When I found my daughter was covid positive, I was suspecting myself personally because I was also experiencing a mild headache and chills on that day.
I was in the office but I didn’t want to give the covid positive information to my 10 years old daughter via message or phone, I wanted to be with her with the result.
I knew my daughter’s habit, she could be very reactive very soon.
I went home, she was constantly asking me the test result, and I told her you are covid positive.
She cried initially, I saw her scary eyes but I hugged her and said, “don’t worry, viruses will go away in two weeks, we all the family members will be isolated from the outside world for two weeks. We will expel this virus from us very soon.”
I couldn’t do anything except to strengthen the morale of my daughter, make her as positive as I could.
After knowing the test result of all the family members, we all did nothing except taking medications, resting, sleeping, drinking water, juice, soups and ginger tea.
I did a little bit of reading and writing completely out of science, my professional area, if I didn’t feel tired.
Most of the time, I felt really tired.
I couldn’t eat much so I was feeling very weak.
I could feel my weakness quite easily due to fatigue, dullness, and body pain.
My body is accustomed physically to running, which I couldn’t do. Even though I couldn’t eat solid food much, I drank plenty of water, juice, soups, and ginger turmeric tea.
When our body hosts contagious viruses, we start to think a lot.
I realized this for the first time in my life.
Thinking became my notorious tool even if I wanted to ignore it.
Thinking becomes more contagious than viruses, when we’re awake.
Why is this never stopping tool so corrosive?
I have no clue.

I wanted to shift my moving brain to something positive, something creative like sitting for longer period meditation.
I knew I couldn’t go out and do other activities so that I could only calm my active brain by indoor activities. I was locked physically but my mind was not locked.
In the past two weeks, I slept two thirds of the time to decelerate my thinking.
I forced myself to sleep even though I wasn’t feeling sleepy.
The only time I felt relaxed is immediately after I wake up from a deep undisturbed ibuprofened sleep.
When the body becomes weak, the only thing the body needs is rest.
Full rest is possible only if we go on deep sleep, our mind shuts its doors so that we can recharge and refuel.

I did some creative light synthesis work in the kitchen.
I made tuna soup for my family.
I fried some onion and tomato pieces with fenugreek, carom, and cumin seeds.
After two minutes of frying, I added tuna chunks and stirred for a few minutes.
I added turmeric powder, salt, and I stirred again.
I grinded ginger and garlic pieces and made a paste and stirred with tuna chunks for at least five minutes.
I added two small chillis, a little bit of cumin seed and coriander powder, and half spoon mixed spice powder again.
I poured 5 cups of water and boiled it for 10 minutes.
After that I transferred it in the bowl, squeezed the fresh lime on top of it and took a sip of it with my favorite spoon.
I felt really energetic with each spoon.

I used to drink the soup, and then I tried to sleep but I couldn’t sleep again.
This became a routine for more than two weeks.
What to do next, I used to sneak inside my daughter’s dark room, I checked them.
I also used to check my wife’s room, she was sleeping next to my two and half years old son.
I touched both of their foreheads.
My wife opened her eyes, a mild face, she held my hands for a few seconds but didn’t say anything.
No need to say anything, I could understand her eyes because I had been reading those eyes for the last 15 years.
I felt both of them hot, I checked their temperatures, both of them were around 101F.

When we have viruses in our body either our body will fight or flight depending upon our body immunity or strength.
I told my wife to take a few sips of cold water which was next to her bed.
She did but my youngest one was in deep sleep.

Every night was a new beginning for me, I knew that.
But I was forgetting it as I moved through pain and fever.
I needed to do one thing that was ahead of me, I didn’t know what was ahead of me, but I needed to do one thing: be calm and positive as much as I could, do meditation as long as I could.

Many nights, I couldn’t sleep.
Next to my bed was a book “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron.
I used to read a few pages.
Julia was talking about our inner artist character which we usually kill very early in our life to avoid unnecessary hurdles and pain.
Julia’s book reminded me why we humans think so much about other people’s opinions to kill our creativity.
I also thought why am I so scared to share my own personal feelings?
Why do I need to share only formal words?
I’ve written many things in my diary but very few things I have shared with the outside world. Why?
Is my life only formal?
Don’t I have private feelings to share?
Then why am I hesitant to share it?

I know everybody has bad and good feelings depending on their personal journey.
Another thing I learned from Julia’s book is we have many things to do in our life, but we have only one thing to accomplish at one time.
This time one thing for me is to take care of my health and my family’s health, and get rid of covid viruses as soon as possible.
Filter every other noise and concentrate on one thing only.
Just one.
I didn’t want to surf facebook because I was not happy. Facebook is the place to share happy faces, nobody posts authenticity there, everything is edited, but our real life is always unfiltered.
I turned off facebook and thought about making chicken soup this morning.
I made chicken soup for lunch.

I always fight to make ginger tea or just drink plain water.
I couldn’t pick one quickly.
What was bothering me about making ginger tea?
I wanted ginger tea but I didn’t have the energy to make ginger tea.
Was I feeling tired or lazy?
Tiredness is different from feeling lazy.
Tiredness is my physical condition but laziness is procrastination.
If something takes less than 2 minutes to finish and if I don’t do it then I’m not tired, I’m just lazy.
Lazy because I’m thinking more rather than doing, I’m accepting everything that comes to my mind but not doing 2 minutes’ work, I am lazy.
I realized I’m lazy, I’m unable to distinguish one thing out of many.
I used to stop my mind quickly, I made ginger tea multiple times in a day, drank, and slept all day.

Among many ways, one way not to feel lazy is to pick one thing that takes less than 2 minutes, and just do it.
Pick one small thing.
Just do it.
Due to weakness, I have been sleeping a lot these days but I always keep one notebook with a nice pen and one of my favorite reading books next to my bed.
I always leave one book on the dining table too.
Whenever my daughters come to eat, they read the title and they also read about the author if the author is female, If the author is male, they rarely read. I don’t know why?
I have noticed this but have not mentioned it.
Once I sit at the dining table, I read one page or maybe two if I feel so.
The book I have right now at my dining table is “The Big Magic” by Elizabeth Gilbert.
I’m reading 73 pages of it.
Today morning, when I opened my eyes, I went to the kitchen, I still had pain in my body, and made ginger tea. I didn’t read the book but I saw only the picture of Elizabeth Gilbert on the back cover.
Of course, she was older than me, she is a white lady, attractive, and has an amazing face-cut but I was in love with her finger and mind connection more.
I asked her, “ what’s in your mind?”
Your genes are chemical engineer’s genes but how do you portray my feelings, my words, and eventually my stories?”
How did you know that I have all of these in my mind?
You are a genius mind reader, I love you Gilbert.
I’ve eaten you, I’ve prayed for you, and I’ve loved you.
Keep shining us through your beautiful words and keep writing, keep inspiring us.
I will keep looking at your passport picture everytime on the book cover when you publish something new and love you always.
But please keep updating your picture in every other book so that I feel I’m getting older too.

I wrote one sentence in my diary.
I wrote, “why do some people become such good artists?”
I was still thinking about Elizabeth Gilbert.
It was 7am.
I wrote “why do I have a headache again?”
Why do I take ibuprofen to kill my headache?
Because I have no other options.
But why?
Because I don’t want to think when I have a headache and body pain.
There is no option, Ibuprofen works only when I sleep.
This is my routine now.
Why cannot I break my routine?
Because I am accustomed to my routine.

What happens if I start something really small to break my routine?
I started to accumulate my personal diaries.
I am hoping to compound everything one day.
That’s the beauty of one thing.
I want to compound not to think much, nowadays the fancy name for this is focus.
Today my one thing is to make chicken soup, one small thing but little different than before.
I’m compounding my soup skill too.
My wife told me I can make nice chicken soup too.
She told me it’s easy, whatever I did for tuna soup, repeat exactly the same, just exchange chicken pieces instead of tuna chunks.
That’s it.
Wow, how do people become so creative?

I realize that life doesn’t need to change a whole lot of things at once, it needs only a small one thing to change at a time.
Today there is just one thing to do, chicken soup, completely different recipe and different taste with only one small tiny change.

If we compound one thing for a 5 percent increment for 10 years how big would the number be?
This is the power of one thing compounded over time.
No plans, no time management, no priority, just one thing, that’s it.

I don’t know how to be happy but the sure way to be unhappy is to do many things at one time, to please many people doing many things for them at one time.
We spend too much time doing many things to make a living in our life rather than building one thing by doing one thing everyday.
To make a living by doing many things in life is a circle but to build one thing by doing one thing in life is an uptrend line.
Spending quality time to build one thing by doing one thing is a responsibility.
Building one thing by doing one thing requires a solid appointment each day and every day.
Make your appointment with one thing everyday whatever it is.
Mine is tuna soup, chicken soup, my midnight diary, Julia’s book pages, Gilbert’s words, Buchwald’s new article, Hartwig’s book, one hour nap on Sunday afternoon, just a few but one thing at a time.

Let’s be serious even though I still have a mild fever.
Let’s see the proof.
Twelve American writers have won the Nobel prize in literature since 1901.
Not one of them had a formal Masters degree in creative writing.
Four of them never even finished high school.
Then how come they got the Nobel prize in literature, well, because they had one thing in their mind.
The only one thing.
They wrote something everyday, maybe less than two minutes everyday.
Maybe one sentence everyday.
They made an appointment with writing for two minutes everyday.
Their one thing was maybe one sentence, or two or maybe five sentences.
If you compound one page for a five percent increment every year for 10 years,
could you guess how many books you could write?

I am formally a doctorate, somebody somewhere gave me this degree by spending five years on one thing only but I assure you all this.
When we pass a certain age in life, no matter how we are spending our time, we will certainly earn a doctorate in how to live a life.
Living a life comes from individual personal experiences.
Any two people’s living experiences’ rarely match.
Let’s make one thing for living a life, whatever it is.
Let’s make an appointment with this one thing, everyday or every night.
My whole body is in pain due to covid, but I would like to make mushroom soup today, my one thing for today.
I will change one thing today, mushroom pieces instead of chicken or tuna pieces, which I made before.
Just one thing but a completely different recipe, every other thing will remain the same.
Gordon Ramsay became the most famous chef in the world by changing just one thing at a time in his recipe.

I hope my whole family will be virus-free soon.

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

My new year resolution: whatever happens but I want to be a dad forever.

“My father didn’t tell me how to live. He lived and let me watch him do it.”
-Clarence Budington Kelland

Look around us.
What do we see?
Things made by humans and things not made by humans.
All of these things made by humans are inspired from things not made by humans.
All of the natural things like water, air, earth, oxygen, animals, and plants carry immense pontential for us.
Always use them for good purpose, education, and motivation.
Whatever things human made which we see around are not made by people smarter or better than us. These people are the same as us.
The only thing they did differently is they spent time studying nature and, most importantly, the complex relationship of it to humans.
They just developed better daily routines and habits to study nature and evolution of human beings, which after a while became automatic and required less conscious energy.

Many times in our life we become illusioned by originality, or quote and quote, something new for the first time. Nothing is original in this world.
We first invented black and white photos but we still had blue sky, light rays, seven colors, brown clouds, green trees, and blue ocean, just to name a few.
These are originals, yes, exactly originals.

Nature is only original, the rest of all is synthesis from it.
Originality only happens if we exactly know what are the edges of reality, and the reality is nature and human beings.

It’s very hard to understand the value of originality if we only listen to a Harvard MBA, a tobacco company CEO, but ignoring a primary school teacher and a forest conservationist in Nigeria and Nepal.
Originality is directly or indirectly connected to us, humanity.
What impact do these people have for us?
If we dig a little deeper for the cause of humanitarian efforts, everything would be clear.
We are living in the age of bubbles, we don’t go deeper because we don’t have time to make a human connection.
Is there any difference between hard-core bribery or corruption or making money by selling tobacco?
I don’t believe the original idea from a Harvard MBA, a tobacco company CEO, there is no such thing, what I believe is derivative of the originals from a primary school teacher or a forest conservationist in Nigeria or Nepal who are devoted to making human beings healthy and happy. Inside the derivative is the human picture that translates the originality into humanity.
There is nothing special, new, and clean except human connection to nature.
We have to clean our house everyday to make it dust free otherwise in no time the house looks crappy.
That everyday cleaning brings originality into the house, the same applies to nature.

Nature has amazing things to offer: we can plant, we can grow, and we can harvest. Plant means to start, grow means to take care, and harvest means to take advantage.

Nature is also an amazing therapy.
It cures a lot of things which modern medicine can’t cure. Of course, it’s slow but way more effective.
Think about the situation where you and your spouse had a severe verbal argument. One of you said sorry and offered a walk in nature.
You tightly hold your spouse’s hand and offer to see the sunset tonight from a rocky mountain. While watching the sun set, what comes to your mind?
Why do you forget everything that you had a few minutes ago?
Imagine the whole universe, observe the sky, look at the horizon, feel the flow of gentle wind.
Are you still stressed with your tomorrow’s goal or weekly goal?
Of course not, you both feel amazingly different.
Why nature settled you both is because it has immense power which we don’t know yet.
If you are planning for a marathon run, a marathon coach instructs you to walk barefoot on grass for 30 minutes every week, why?
Because nature provides strength to your feet.
If we only eat the kind of food which gives life if we throw it on soil, for example, plants, seeds, or grains etc then we never become sick.
Because soil is nature, grains and plants are also nature they provide strength to our body.
Nowadays, our everyday breakfast has sugar and doughnuts, they are against nature.
Our grandmother doesn’t recognize them as food.
By the way, our grandmother is also nature.

Remember, if we are healthy then only we make thousands of dreams in life but if we are unhealthy then we have only one dream in life: how to get rid of the disease.

If you are a person to believe in magic diet pills to be slimer and beautiful rather than the daily 7am run in nature then you have not understood the power of nature.

Always look a few steps in front of you before looking too far too quick.
Right in front of us is oxygen to breathe, water to drink, trees to get shades, soil to plant, and animals to pet.
We have sunlight that converts our cholesterol in the skin into vitamin D3 in our body.
These resources are interlinked with our mind and body, and they communicate with us constantly.

Accept it or not, nature gives energy, strength, and freedom to us.
But for that we have to think a little deeper, learn at least a little bit from Galileo, Aristotle, and Henry David Thoreau.
Freedom provides creativity if we try to understand the complexity of nature.
Amazing things are amazing the first time when they happen but this amazing wanes with repetition.
But nature never wanes.
Think of the moment when your wife or girlfriend tells you for the first time that she is pregnant, a true gift of nature.
Think of the sentence ‘I love you’ when your partner said it to you for the first time.
You both represented nature at the moment.

Politics, peace, love, hate, jealousy, money, marriage, sex, status, birth, death, disease, and religion, each is a powerful source of human emotion.
Do we actually know whom to marry, where to work, where to raise a baby, and where to retire. Of course not, but we are still worried all the time about them and become emotional.

Remember, happiness and success aren’t found when we are emotional, we don’t become happy by buying things we don’t need, with money we don’t have, to impress people we won’t know in 5 to 10 years from now.

Many of our emotions cloud our judgements. This is a severe weakness for human beings. Nature has an aesthetic power to control our emotions. Scientifically how it works I don’t know but it works.
I feel tired, I come home, I sit on the couch, I take off my socks, my cat knows I am at home, my cat sits next to me and stares at me, my cat comes and snuggles my feet, I feel relaxed.
If I’m overwhelmed, I also come out in my garden, I touch the ground with my bare feet and I feel different.
I feel calm and relaxed.
I feel connected to all the human beings around the globe through earth because every human being is touching the earth.
Isn’t it power?

All prospective moms know the nine months pregnancy would be troublesome.
Every mom knows the pain and suffering of delivery but still they are very happy to give birth to a baby.
All prospective parents know they have to clean up poops, change diapers, they have to spend time on their kids’ homework, they might have to cut their sleep time, they have to spend their life savings for college tuition but still they want to go to become dad and mom.
Because parenthood is nature, there is something incredible inside it.
I’ve seen a billboard with just the words ‘dad’ and ‘mom’. Do we need any sentence to complete these words?
I don’t think so.

Recently, I asked a 77 years old man, who was smoking outside of his office building, “you always seemed relaxed, what is the reason for it?”
He said, “my son finished college, my daughter gave birth to a healthy daughter last month, I’m a grandfather now, isn’t it enough to be happy?”

I just smiled without any comment, I don’t know why but his answer touched my heart.

“I also look at my marriage. Yes, I’m a father, I’m a grandfather, I’m uncle, and I’m a friend. Wait, I’m boss too in my office, but at my core, I’m just a human being doing my best to create a life for my kids and grandkids that makes me proud,” he further added.
“I should mention this, if you want to be relaxed in life, always wear nice and comfy underwear and socks, never compromise on these things, two thirds of your life time you wear those, I’m serious, do the things whatever makes you happy, healthy, and comfy,” he said laughingly but seriously.

Isn’t this 77 years old man a student of nature?

We can become whatever we want in life for a very short period of time but we have to be either dad or mom forever.
Being dad and mom is nature; no, no, I’m not saying natural, I’m saying nature; but any other role in life is temporary and easily interchangeable.
The strength that you generate being a dad and mom is immense, that needs to be preserved to transfer in generations to come.
Being a dad or mom, never ever talk about yourself more in front of your kids, let them see your activities more.
The only way they learn more is by mirroring you.
Let them see you walking on the grass, let them see you running in the morning, let them see you watching the sun-set, and let them see you eating only whole grains.
You must be a very good student of nature yourself first to be a dad or mom forever.

Our adult suicide rates have tripled over the past forty years, the most selling drugs at present are for depression, anxiety, and stress.
Anxiety starts at age 11, depression starts at age 14, obesity and diabetes are at epidemic level at the moment.
Do you really know, why?
Because we forgot to plant, we forgot to grow, and we forgot to harvest.
The biggest problem, as a dad and mom, we forget because we don’t have time to teach our kids about these activities.

Remember, a tree doesn’t speak, it remains calm and serene but it gives flowers and those flowers turn into fruits when time comes.
Parenthood is nature: let our kids see how to plant, grow, and harvest.
If we learn patience from a tree, we become dad and mom forever.
Silence is also power; it also comes from a tree.
As Brene Brown, an author of ‘Daring Greatly’, says: talk less, listen more. This is a secret sauce to become a great dad and a great mom forever.

Time is a non-renewable resource in our life.
Let our kids know that time is nature, it is a zero sum thing, we cannot make more of it.
The most important thing in life is time, it has no color, no shape, and no size, we don’t see or feel it, it doesn’t wait for anybody.
It is not an object but it is an abstraction, treat it as such.
Respect for time is respect for nature.
The human being is the only animal that thinks about time, thinks about past, present, and future.
As a human being, the donation of time for any human cause is more powerful than the donation of money for the same cause.
As a dad and mom, let our kids see where we donate our time.
Donate our time to teach computer science in rural public schools so that they know why information is power, donate our time to teach chemistry in rural public schools so that they understand why we have to make more medicines to cure diseases.
Donate our time to build a local library in your community so that they will know what knowledge and wisdom are hidden in the pages of a book.

Donate our time to teach young generations about nature so that they will know why we should live our life happily.

Learning to donate time to humanity is learning to be a best dad and best mom forever.

I wish you all: a very happy, healthy, and prosperous new year 2022.

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

Do you know the secret of happiness? It moves.

To be happy means to experience that we are alive. -Anonymous

I was reading a newspaper in a coffee shop.
Suddenly, I saw a couple at the corner table with espresso coffee and banana muffins.
I wasn’t in a good mood, I don’t know why, a bit depressed, thinking about a lot of things in my life: my unfinished projects, no time for family and kids, mundane career, no time to travel, and not enough money. Name a few of them.
In addition to that, I was also worried about my legacy for my children.
What was I thinking at the coffee shop?
Maybe I was a bit overwhelmed.
I wasn’t happy at all.

Suddenly, the same couple sitting at the corner table approached me and handed me a Christmas card.
On the back side of the card there were five very important quotes from very influential people.
One particular quote from Anne Frank is still in my head: “think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy.”

After reading those five quotes, I wasn’t the same person as before entering the coffee shop.
I smiled to myself, a little bit excited, at least I was happy for a moment due to the momentum brought by those quotes.
Quotes are creative human expressions, and a lot of times we try to live by them based on our lifestyle. Sometimes it’s possible to live by these quotes, sometimes it doesn’t.
Quotes not only speak our inner voice they also speak what is outside of our life.
In my case, those quotes which I read were real and took me to a higher energy level for a moment.
I don’t know why but I felt a different kind of happiness when I finished reading them.
I am pondering now, did the couple transfer little happiness to me?

I am still reflecting now, getting a bit emotional remembering the past incident at the moment.
Am I crazy to think about that small moment again?
But wait, life itself is the combination of many small moments which we don’t get time to cherish.
Do I feel happy right now?
Well, how to know?
My mind is still not accepting the present reality that I’m happy because I’m constantly searching for something.
I’m very anxious because I’m worried about the future.
Why do we need a constant push to remain happy at the moment?
Do you have any clue?
Have you ever experienced something like this before?

I know happiness is a subjective experience, it’s difficult to describe because your happiness could not be mine, and my happiness could not be yours.
Could I read the happiness of the couple sitting next to me? They seemed pretty happy, laughing and talking together, cuddling to each other with sips of coffee and bites of muffins.
Hell, no, I couldn’t read their happiness externally from my mind.
I told myself, the experience that I was having at that moment was different than that of a couple, the couple couldn’t have the same experience as mine, we were two different emotional creatures.

As Daniel Gilbert, the author of ‘Stumbling on Happiness’ said that happiness cannot be measured but we can only either participate in it or be aware of it.

What I have seen from movies and read from great books is: happiness is internal, it is being.
Many great spiritual leaders and great authors have said that calm is also happiness.
Many social scientists have based their research on this topic.
The common saying is we attract happiness, we don’t search for it.
Then, why am I searching for it?
Because this is our human nature, we always search for happiness.
I remember one of my mentors who told me that whether the person is happy from inside or searching for happiness, always look for two simple characters.

These two characters are: unhappy people always argue, they argue a lot about anything, big or small, and most importantly, they argue to win.
The person who argues has ego, it suppresses happiness.
They don’t care about facts, figures, and knowledge.
Ego comes when you are not happy with your life, you have a lot of dissatisfaction inside you, mostly created by self centered confinement.
When ego is gone, humility comes, then you smile naturally, this is how happiness emerges.
If you are happy then you discuss things with positive intention but you never argue.
Discussion is not an argument, discussion is sharing with others, when you show a sharing attitude, your mind glows and you become happy.
Always share or transfer your happiness whatever it is, small or big, it always multiplies in ample quantities.

Know this, you only become happy when you make others happy.

The second characteristic of unhappiness is gossiping.
If we are not happy with our life then we talk about other people.
This is hilarious but a fact.
Remember, if we gossip with somebody, somebody also gossips about us.
Gossiping is the elongation of our dissatisfaction about our own life in a fake happy appearance.
We are just taking time to avoid our unhappiness for the time being.
Unhappy people mostly gossip to compare things, appearance, and habits showing the hidden motif that I am superior.

Remember, happy people always talk about ideas and experiences, they don’t gossip about things, appearance, and habits of other people.

Nowadays, happiness has been contaminated by things; money which never becomes enough, big house which never becomes big enough, big car which never becomes luxurious enough, and many others.

Our happiness never becomes happy enough if we constantly look for things to possess.
Possessing things consume us very quickly if we are not aware of their nature.
In reality, happiness is peace with whatever we have.
This ‘have’ ridiculously becomes ‘want’ if we don’t practice peace in our lives.

Few years ago, I met a man at my family friend’s house. He said that he made one million dollars in five years going the extra mile in his business.
He said that he is very happy because he made that money after a long struggle in the medical equipment business as a sales representative.
Few months ago, I met him again in one conference and he shared his mom’s undiagnosed health issue. He was very worried thinking about his mom’s health condition.
I became familiar with him through our professional connection because I am also involved in the medical research area.
Few days ago he called me and shared the good news that a doctor in Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City identified his mother’s disease.
But the doctor said it would cost upto one million dollars in total to cure the disease. His mom was suffering from a very abnormal cancer.
My friend said to me he was so happy that his mom would be alive.
He added that finally God saw him and helped to save his mother’s life.

After our conversation, I was very happy for him that his mom’s disease got identified and will be cured soon.

After seeing my friends’ stages in life, I became quite unhappy about one thing.
Why does this happiness move in our life so quickly?
My friend was so happy with one million dollars in his bank account, but now he is happier to spend the money to save his mother.
What is so unique about our happiness?

One day I met the same friend in a Barnes and Noble book store, he shared his mom’s health and told she is free from cancer now.
He told me that only peace can bring happiness to us.

He further added, “if we want to have a happy life we should anticipate a lot in life but we should never react. We humans always blame other people or things for our own suffering or unhappiness.”
“In fact, we ourselves are the cause of our suffering and unhappiness. If we develop a non reactive attitude, we bring peace into us that is essential to remain happy,” he further added.

If you aren’t happy then your unhappiness doesn’t remain isolated within you, you will send this unhappiness to all of your family members, loved ones, and colleagues. They never become happy with your unhappiness.

Life is too short to be unhappy.
Happiness doesn’t come as an end product, happiness is the series of small moments we pass every single day.
We have to learn to be happy in those small moments, we have to practice to cherish those moments.
Therefore, choose happiness and always practice happiness.

Shahrukh Khan, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Lady Gaga aren’t happy because they are famous celebrities and they have millions of strange followers; they are happy because they also have life like us, they have family and loved ones around them like us, they can breathe and smell this wonderful world as we do.
We don’t always get what we want in life, but if we practice happiness we always get what we need in life.
‘Need’ gives us a sense of fulfillment but ‘want’ doesn’t.

Last week, I was in the Wal-Mart self-checking counter, behind me was an old woman waiting with a gallon of milk and some apples. That would probably cost less than five dollars.
I smiled at the lady and asked her, “Mam, you have just two items, I have many, could I scan your milk and apples first and let you go?”
“And mam, don’t worry, I will pay for you.”
The woman looked at me straight in my eyes first, she smiled and said, “God bless you.”
I still have her smile in my head.
I hope I transfer a very small happiness to her.

Remember, Socrates taught Plato, Plato also taught Aristotle, and Aristotle also taught Alexander the Great.
What do these great people have in common?
Each of these great people were transferring their happiness in the name of knowledge and wisdom.

By the way, if you know any other secrets of happiness, please share with others. Let’s make this world a little happier together.

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

After six month’s music class, my music teacher asked me, “Is this your dream or goal?”

More than a decade ago when I was an undergrad, I joined a music class.
I liked singing, I spent a significant amount of time on singing because I wanted to become a professional singer.
I also sang a few songs on stage in various school and college programs.
Many of my contemporary friends used to compliment me that I sang pretty well and my voice was very solid, suitable for many modern sentimental songs.
Actually, similar types of words from many of my friends catalyzed me to pursue my music journey.
I believed at the time that music could be one of the reasons to live a purposeful life for me.

I used to attend music class in the evening after school.
My teacher taught me classical music very thoroughly.
My music teacher always told me to practice classical songs because he was a firm believer that classical music only produces a good vocalist.
I still think I wasn’t a bad student at least, I might be an average student but I’m sure I wasn’t meeting my teacher’s expectations as I could imagine.
I was clearly unaware what his expectation looked like.

After about six month’s music class, one day my teacher asked me a very thought provoking question.
That question was a heavy load for me to rethink my music passion.
I still to this day have no clue why he asked me such a question and what he saw on me on that day.

He asked me, “Is this singing your dream or goal?”

I didn’t know what he meant then.
I didn’t understand upfront so I was confused about what to say.
I’d heard that many of my friends used to say about their dream job, dream car, and dream house.
But I’d never heard about any goal for a house or car or job, at least by people whom I was surrounded by.
I also thought the same way and said to my teacher, “singing is my dream.”
He didn’t say anything except a silent soft laugh.
To be honest, I didn’t know the difference between dream and goal, so I told him, I wanted to become a singer.
I told him that I wanted to become a professional singer, singing was my passion, it was a kind of dream but I wanted to make it come true for me.

My teacher added, “Most of the time dreams are fantasies in our life, dreams don’t come into reality because they are very volatile.
We see so many dreams at night during sleep but most of them we forget by the time we wake up in the morning.”

“But the goal is different, it is a stepwise concrete rational process of achieving something.
Goal is not a dream, goal is something we can only see when we are awake,” my teacher further added.

I didn’t respond to anything he said except I greeted him and said, “bye”.
This was my last conversation with my teacher regarding music class, after that I never returned to the music class.
I still to this day don’t know why I didn’t return to the music class because I wasn’t offended by what he said.

I talked about this conversion to one of my close friends during lunch time the next day.
My friend told me, “Dreams may come from your goal too, but you have to pass the goal threshold.”
I asked him, “What is the ‘goal threshold’?”
What he said about the ‘goal threshold’ on that day stuck in my life through today.
My friend made me understand what goal is and what dream is.

Goal itself is also just imagination if we keep this inside us but if we take action and finish 5 percent of the goal then we pass the ‘goal threshold’.
Our goal could be anything but we must finish at least 5 percent of it in the beginning, if we want to see our goal in our dream.

My friend added, “Dreams evaporate in the morning, but goal condenses in the morning.”
Evaporation is disappearing from us but condensation is reappearing in more visible form.
We never visualize the dream in the morning, we never try to remember.
But all the successful people always visualize their goals.
Goal setting is a visualization process to make impossible possible for them, but always stepwise.
When we have the habit of visualizing the goal, we don’t have to compete with others, we will compete for ourselves, and also win for ourselves.
Winning to yourself is the best win ever.
My friend said, “once you finish the 5 percent goal threshold, you create the habit to anticipate more than to react. This is really important for any kind of goal in life.”

My friend gave me a very simple example of how things work out when we process any goal in life and how the 5 percent threshold works.
He shared his goal of being healthy in life by adopting this technique.

He told me, “I always start the day by drinking one glass of water in the morning immediately after I wake up.
When I drink one glass of water immediately after I wake up, I win over my dehydrated body that gives energy to win my day.
This is a very small task but worth doing every single day if I want to become healthy. This is my 5 percent threshold for the day.”

Keep in mind, small tasks matter the most to achieve any big goal in life.
If small tasks are done consistently over time, we will achieve the big goal, it’s only a matter of time.
Drinking a glass of water right after we wake up is the first step that we are ready to battle the day.
It also provides a sense of pride to us, because this is another indication that we love our body which is our incredible engine in this life.
It’s so easy to snooze the button and sleep five more minutes rather than go to the kitchen and drink a glass of water.
Once we get up and move out of bed, it is less likely that we come back to bed to sleep again.
This is another advantage to make a habit of early rising to benefit from a miracle morning.

This looks like a small task but many of us rarely do it because walking to the kitchen is an initiation step for our goal that needs some mental energy to begin.
Going from bed to kitchen is a motion that produces energy.
Drinking water is an action, remember, action produces emotion and that is what drives us to accomplish any of our life goals.

Truth to be told, the majority of us don’t drink enough water during the day, not because of any specific reasons, but only due to our busyness.
We forget to drink.
Many of our everyday discomforts like headache, dizziness, and tiredness also happen due to dehydration in our body.
Keep in mind, the majority of kidneys, liver, and brain diseases start due to dehydration in our body in the very beginning.
Drinking a glass of water immediately after we wake up is a less than a minute task, but it changes life if done consistently everyday.

The consistency in action is the first step to achieve any life goal whatever small the action might be.

To make our body and mind healthy, we don’t have to do big and difficult tasks but we have to do small tasks everyday regularly.

Life is a battle of winning small things everyday.

We all want to be happy, we all know what we need to do to become happy and healthy.
We’ve read about how to be happy and healthy, we’ve seen about it in books and movies, we think we know how the happiness steps work in our life.
But the problem is we never make a clear goal to achieve it and take action consistently.
We have no idea how the ‘goal threshold’ works in the case of our happiness.
If we don’t do anything small consistently everyday related to the big goal then we don’t have any goal, and if we don’t have any goal then we never experience happiness.

Happiness is the internal feeling of satisfaction of doing something regularly.

I believe inconsistency is what my music teacher realized and saw in me when I was doing music class. I was not consistent in any of my work.

Happiness is an unseen but felt emotion which releases gradually while moving towards any goal in life with consistency.

Having a goal is like starting a wall with a single brick or stone you know nothing about in the beginning, but eventually a wall is made.
Happiness is like how it feels by increasing the wall 2 inches taller everyday.

But, having a dream is a little different as we know it, we’ve read it, and we’ve seen it, but unfortunately, never translating it into reality.
The problem is every night a new dream appears and vanishes in the morning.

Goal of being healthy, happy, and wealthy should never be complicated.
Complication is in our laziness.
Complication is in our only thinking habit but never to start.
Complication is in our only saying habit but not doing.
Complication is in our only postponing habit.
Complication is our only procrastination habit.

We don’t want to spend 5 minutes on small but important things everyday early in the morning right after we wake up which passes our ‘goal threshold’ for the day.
Drinking one glass of water takes less than 1 minute.
Early meditation to clear our head takes less than 2 minutes.

Remember, meditation is a purposeful silence which is way more powerful than busy, hectic, and rush in life.
Busy, hectic, and rush are common words in our everyday life.
These words have been created by our own circumstances, people around us, and personal choice.
Our life is way more important than these few selected words that we throw around all the time.
If we play the busyness card only on the treadmill and never learn how to put a ladder, then we reach nowhere. We make a circle over and over again and end up in the same place in life.

Purposeful silence heals the body permanently but medication heals the body temporarily.

Stretching our body early in the morning takes less than 2 minutes which regulates our metabolic activity and blood circulation.
Not only that, by stretching our body or by doing little physical workout, we also enter into a little higher state of mind where our thinking becomes different than before to start the physical workout.
But we never do physical workout consistently because we are in a rush, we don’t have time to do it.

All of these aforementioned tasks take a maximum of 5 minutes and this is what gives a healthy, happy, and wealthy life in the long run.

Whatever weird the goal is, if we stick to the goal and battle the small humps everyday, we will win the race.

I don’t know how this system works but the result appears automatically once we are in the process.
I believe this is how any of our life goals translates into reality, slowly but surely.

People without goals are more likely to be depressed at some stage in life and generally have terrible mornings because their mind is relatively quiet in the morning.
Quietness is the enemy for those who are depressed in life.
They have to bring stuff from the past, maybe from the previous day or a few days before to run their mind.
They also don’t sleep at night because their mind is constantly buzzing from the whole day’s activities or by old past activities.
They never practice how to clear their head before going to bed or in the morning after they wake up.

Depression generally happens when we focus more on us rather than our meaningful goal.

Once we have a goal in life, things run smoothly and we are less likely to have a depressed mind.
Our days and nights run very smoothly.
We sleep well.
And ultimately, this is the secret of our happiness.
When you have a goal, when you sleep well at night, when you become healthy, you learn how to reduce time on things that you hate the most.
This habit automatically generates more time on things you love the most.

Remember, who you are is what your goal is.
Goal is not what we know, what we tell others, and what our plan is, the goal is what we do everyday consistently.

In the end, the goal of a goal is to change it into a smooth system and live a happy life.

By the way I’m so thankful to my music teacher for such a thought provoking question that helped me to shed my life.
Thank you teacher.

Thank you everyone for your time.
-Yam Timsina

Ultimately, your gay gene is an extension from your dad. Isn’t it?

I said, “you are a very good friend to me, I know, but I’m interested in her for a different reason. Do you understand?”
He wasn’t happy with what I just said, he nodded without any reaction.
I didn’t understand why he was constantly interfering in my personal life even though he has been my genuine friend for the last 7 plus years.
I needed some personal space, some privacy, and some lonely time to plan my future life.
I wanted to go to dinner with her but he wanted to join us. How could I say don’t join the dinner with us? He’d been one of my best friends through all my undergraduate and graduate school.

When he said that he wanted to join us for dinner with the two of us, me and the girl of my choice, I felt that he’s no common sense. I told myself, “why don’t you understand?” For the first time in my life, something different was going to happen. I was going for dinner with a girl of my thoughts, I needed to go alone with her for some breakthrough talks.
I couldn’t understand my friend’s behaviour, I was quite confused.
“What’s wrong with you?” I screamed to myself in my room.
For a long time he’d said that he would help me in various junctures of my life because we’d fighted many causes together.
Later I felt that he was quite unusual, I couldn’t clearly understand his motive, I was only thinking whether he was doing this knowingly or unknowingly. I needed some private time to settle my life but his action was creating trouble for my plan.

Why did he always want to associate with me everytime?
Was he crossing the fine line of friendship?
I never understood.

I remembered, 2 years ago, he told me, “I’m 28 years old now, I feel very awkward, and insecure. I don’t know why I’m not happy with my existence.”
“There is something wrong inside me, I never told you about this awkwardness, insecurity and suffering. I’ve been having this insecurity for the last several years, I’m being weaker and weaker every single day.” he added.

Being one of his close friends, I told him, “you’re strong, you’ve an Ivy league MBA, you’ve just started a corporate job, your life has just started, but your problem is you take everything very seriously.”
“You think a lot, I would say, you do unnecessary thinking, designed thinking is good but excessive unnecessary thinking 24/7 isn’t good for our healthy body and healthy mind, that’s your problem, you’ve to fix it.”
“You have to make things a little bit easier in life so that our body and mind communicates, life takes its shape the same way as every other living thing does, life matures itself with time, everything takes time to reshape.” I showed positive vibes.

I remembered his response, he said, “Sometimes I feel more rebellious with my family and society, I’ve this scary feeling all the time, I don’t know why?”

When I heard the news that he is in hospital, I couldn’t move, what happend, and later knew that he attempted to committ suicide.

“That’s beyond my imagination, what’s going on in his life” I screamed.
I couldn’t believe this. I helped him in so many ways to see things in life and he helped me in the same way.
We used to share a lot of things, both good and bad. But why this time I’m in the corner and he made such a horrible decision to abandon everything including his own life.
Anyway, I knew that he survived, he is recovering well gradually. I’m happy.
I talked to his family members but nobody knew anything on how and why he took such an unthinkable terrifying step.
My mind was bogging me all the time to know why he attempted such a heinous crime.
I decided that I will go deeper and will find it out.

He was in a hospital bed, he was recovering gradually, and the doctor said that he would be fine after 2 to 3 weeks, he needs a lot of physical and mental rest.

I went to the hospital and told him, “if you think I’m your good friend then you can’t hide it from me. Please tell me what is inside you that is eating you everyday all the time.”
Please tell me.
I saw tears in his eyes.
He said in one sentence, “I’m gay, but I want to live.”
No words.
I filled the gap of silence, “so what?”
“I have gay friends, I occasionally chat with them in social media. They are very genuine and responsible, they are living happy lives, they’ve contributed a lot for society.” I said.
“Is this the only reason that led you to take in such a heinous crime to kill yourself?” I asked.
“I would say this, my friend, you attempted to escape from your own suffering but you’re about to give incurable long-lasting suffering to your family, you didn’t do justice here by not sharing with me about your suffering, I knew you were in pain but you chose to fight alone and wanted to have a trophy of suffering.” I further added.

He grabbed a napkin and wiped his tears.

My friend, we all will die one day so we need to plan our death, then only we live this life freely.
If we don’t plan our death or if we forget that we will die one day in future then we are not living.
You are gay, you accepted it, but I don’t know what bothered you so much to let the world know about this?
This your gay life isn’t your choice.
God made you gay, so where is your fault here?
You cannot change your genes, you cannot change your hormones, and you cannot change your brain.
You have no power to change the complexity of interconnectedness between your genes and hormonal biology.
Biology is a natural force which is beyond our control, but culture, religion, and other beliefs are human-made myths so they keep changing.

My friend, we still have a caste system in hindu community, we still have untouchable humans in this world, we still have a race system in American society.
We still cannot prosecute husbands in more than 50 countries of the world even if they rape their wives because they don’t have such legal mechanism, husbands still think wives are their properties, things, they own them.
These above facts are only ‘tip of the iceberg’ of human myths but sexuality is pure biology, it’s not a myth.
Eventually biology always wins, it’s only a matter of time.

My friend, you and I had the same biology until puberty but after that, god gave you a different path to go and me a different path.
Though we say all humans are created equal, in reality, we are born with different genes and we gradually evolve unequally based on those different genes, hormones, brain, and external environment. But I am sure we both can live our lives in our own way.

Why don’t you accept who you are and show the world who you can become and what you can offer to the world?
You might be depressed because you are not like me. You want to be like others, you want to be like the majority of us. My friend, this is BS. Your biological identity is your authenticity.

The meaning of life is unconditional but you are making it conditional by attempting to commit suicide.
If somebody is killed by some external factor then death has some justification but if we kill ourselves then our death has no meaning, no justification.
Suffering and dying are inevitable in our lives but if we kill ourselves by our own weak thoughts then we’ve not understood death.

My friend, you don’t know what you can offer personally to this society yet, but if you become weak to fight against the social myths then you’ve not learnt anything from Tim Cook, who leads one of the most powerful companies, Apple, as a CEO on the planet.
He is a gay.
If you become weak, what do you learn from Anderson Cooper? He is a gay.
Every aspiring journalist on the planet wants to be like Anderson Cooper in the field of journalism.
What do you learn from Tammy Baldwin, she is a US senator, one of the highest public offices of the most powerful country on earth.
She happened to be a lesbian.

My friend, this world has given to all of us a special quality in a special form. In this world there are many buildings, they all have unequal size doors. If you are stuck in one door and can’t go through then you have to go around to find another door through which you can go. But this is your job to keep looking at various doors.
This also applies at your home and if you can’t go through then you might have to take the initiative to modify the doors at your home.
In fact, your house is your home, remember all houses may not be homes, you stayed there for 28 years, that place isn’t only home for you, it should be a heaven for you.

We are Homo Sapiens, this means we are social animals. All of our social features including happiness and suffering originate from family.
Our biological identity should not be characterized by hostility and mockery.
My friend, you must start the conversation about your biological identity with your dad or mom or sister or brother about who you really are, and what you really can offer to this world.
I request you to start the conversation with one person first whom you trust the most and move ahead in life.
Once you start the conversation in your family as who you really are, they start to make space for you, this is how our identity revolution begins.
Remember, Claudette Colvin was 15 years old when she refused to give up her seat to a white woman on a crowded, segregated bus but this incident led Rosa Parks to revolt again and now we all know the history of the 1950s civil rights movement in the USA.
Any movement needs space to wiggle and it also needs time to wiggle but somebody should start somewhere to make a move.

Life shouldn’t be complicated but it doesn’t mean it has through road-signs all the way to the end.
My conversation with my friend suddenly stopped once I saw his dad entering the hospital room.
His dad sat next to him and comforted his son’s forehead with his hand.
His son closed his eyes but I saw tear droplets in his eyes.
I greeted ‘goodbye’ to both dad and son and assured my friend to come tomorrow again in the evening.

My whole life with him from high school to this day was revolving in my mind. I reflected back, I saw so many things correlated now, every single incident is making sense now which I couldn’t understand then.
I felt bad for what I said and did for him in the past, what other friends did and said to him, and what society did for him. Of course, it’s past now, it’s gone, nothing can be done. I learnt, realized and murmured to myself why God offers life so mysteriously.

I promised myself that I will do whatever I can, I won’t let my friend die again.

I used to read books randomly when I was undergrad, I wasn’t a systematic and aggressive reader then, but when I started my graduate career, I became very interested in reading books far from my core expertise of chemical science.
I became an aggressive reader. I joined book clubs. I knew that I developed my mental faculties broadly to understand human values and society by reading diverse books written by priceless minds.

After returning from the hospital I was looking at something in one of my old boxes but my eyes caught a book on the shelf by Dr Viktor Frankl “Man’s Search for Meaning”.
I remembered that this book I had received from one of my friends as a birthday gift.
I’d also discussed this book in the book club in the past.
Inside the book, there was a written note from my friend who gave me the book “this would be a nice companion when you are suffering in life.”

I reread a few pages from Viktor Frankl’ book. I read, “The meaning of life always changes, but it never ends. The meaning of life is to be discovered in the world rather than search within oneself.”
I realized that probably my friend searched the meaning of life within himself but never tried to discover, as a result, he chose a route to committe suicide.

Viktor has a vivid explanation of an individual’s experience in a book as a prisoner in a Nazi concentration camp. The most important aspect I like in the book is the view of an author, who is a doctor, for love, hope, responsibility, freedom, and beauty. These all can be found in both nature and art as tools in suffering and depression.

I told my friend that you are gay but this shouldn’t be the reason of your suffering.
There is nothing wrong with it, and it is given to you by another force, nature or God whatever you can say.
When you were a child, your dad made everything for you, he made a roof for you, he provided food on the table, he managed clothes to wear, you received all the love and care but now why do you think that your dad won’t accept you as a gay son?
Ultimately, your gay gene is an extension from your dad. Isn’t it?

Next day I handed him the book “Man’s Search for Meaning” by Viktor Frankl and said to him that this book could be a nice friend to you while recovering in the hospital bed.

I asked him a series of questions intentionally, I thought this might help him to reveal more who he really is.
Why are you afraid to open up your identity now?
What is the worst that can happen if you open up your identity?
Why are you depressed now?
Who do you think is the most helpful person in your life now?
What is the meaning of your life?
These might be difficult questions to answer for him but I’m sure he can tackle all of these hurdles one by one.

When we remain depressed we always feel like we are not being treated fairly in this world. We always think that this world has done something wrong with us.
We always assume that we don’t understand things even after taking a long time of study but other people will understand things quickly.
If we start to think this way then what happens to those tens of thousands of others who are gay who have no education, no jobs, but struggling in society every single day?

My friend, this world is neutral, this world isn’t biased, this world doesn’t recognize rich and poor, strong and weak, educated and uneducated, gay and straight.
This is our duty to find out which role we are playing and where we fit. This understanding is critical to lower depression in our life.

Once we become depressed, we not only become unhappy ourselves, we make so many people unhappy around us.
Depression is like gas in an empty room, it doesn’t matter how much gas flows inside the room, it will eventually fill the room.
If we are depressed for any reason, it doesn’t stay only with us, it ultimately spreads like a virus all over our family, our relatives, and our close friends.

We have to understand that suffering and happiness both are byproducts of our life journey. They are basically not the targeted end products. These both must occur during our lifetime. We cannot keep only happiness and exclude the suffering or vice-versa, this is not going to happen at any time.
Think of this way, our body loves good and nutritious food but our body also stores feces until it can be defecated.

Mostly, we remain depressed because we have fear in our mind, fear of not becoming somebody, fear of not achieving something, fear of chronic disease which we don’t have yet, fear of the future which we don’t know yet what it looks like, fear of losing something which we actually don’t possess yet, and most importantly, fear of not being accepted by society.
Fear prevents us from living in many many ways.
But if we really want to see the other side of the fear, there is nothing, it’s a clean slot but we cannot see it until we jump on fear first.
Fear is such a brutal and chronic emotion that we completely forget that we can live by eating only rice and beans in this life.
We completely forget that we can live by eating only oatmeal, by drinking only water throughout our lifetime if we want.
We completely forget that we can live by wearing two jeans and two shirts for many many years to come.

We always remain depressed thinking of something negative in our lives but our mind actually stores nothing negative if we practice only positive in it.

Last year, my friend sent me a birthday card via email, he’d written on the card, “God broke my power of love for opposite sex but I always strengthened my power of love for the same sex. I’m happily married, a mom now with two wonderful kids. Thank you so much for everything that you did for me. Happy Birthday to You”

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

Why is pain so beautiful?

Two years ago I read a book “What I talk about when I talk about running” by Haruki Murakami.
Different people have different tastes and different perceptions on other peoples’ experiences but many core values always remain the same.
That’s the reason all 8 billion people on the planet have unique experiences to live and share with the world.
Many times each author expresses his or her emotional, intellectual, and physical experiences in their writing.
Haruki’s book is one of the best books I have ever read where he portrays his life sincerely as a writer and a runner.
I rarely repeat the book but this Haruki’s 175 page book is one of them.

Though this book is based on his running life, the nuggets in the book are extremely valuable in every aspect of our normal life.
One such nugget, my personal favorite, is: “the most important thing we learn at school is the fact that the most important things can’t be learned at school.”

This book reminds us many times that we are limitless in life.
The author Murakami is a tremendous human being, a novelist, and later turned into an unstoppable long distance runner.
He’s run dozens of marathons in many places around the world including ultramarathons.
He started his running at age 33, which is already a huge inspiration to all of us.
At this age many other people, especially in sport activities, generally start to think about retiring.
I remember from the book, at one point he was running an ultramarathon in Japan, thinking about 62 miles to finish which he was running for the first time in his life.
In the middle of the ultramarathon, he passes the finish line of the marathon, 26.2 miles, and he reads the words on the side of the hoarding board.
The hoarding board says, “this is the finish line of a marathon.”
This was the first time Haruki was running beyond a marathon finish line in his life so that he was having a unique experience of post marathon run.
After passing the marathon finish line he says to himself, “I’m not a human, I’m a piece of machinery.”
He was running to finish 62 miles but he kept saying the same words again and again, “I’m not a human, I’m a piece of machinery.”
He finished 62 miles comfortably.
As we all know, any machine doesn’t bear any pain but produces only beautiful products, the Murakami machine produces only beautiful experiences.

After absorbing Murakami’s life, I realized there are many things that are inevitable in life but pain and suffering is a personal choice.
He talks about forced pain and desired pain in our lives.
Forced pain is something different and in many cases not beneficial, but desired pain is amazing, it is a real pain indeed but makes us happier once we start to love the process of pain.
Marathon running can never be a forced activity, it can only be an individual’s desired activity.
Not many people can run a marathon, only very few selected people can run.
And running a marathon multiple times is unthinkable for many ordinary people.
It’s not only strong will power that is required for marathon running, it’s the love of the process that makes marathon running beautiful.

Once we know how to release the pain from the body, the void appears inside us and is very beautiful, that’s what Murakami says life is all about.
There is so much physical and mental pain to finish a marathon but once we pass the finish line, there remains only joy.
No words how to express the feeling.
There is only joy.
Murakami said, “The only thing that comes to mind after finishing a marathon is how I can run better next time.”
The mind becomes more repetitive, more patient, and a lot more disciplined.
Think about this, if this becomes habitual in life then where do we find the pain?

Another runner, Phil Knight, founder of NIKE, author of ‘Shoe Dog’, was also famous in track running, though he was a middle distance runner, he used to run 7 miles every morning from his work to home in his early life.
Phil Knight also says that runners have no destination, their destination is their path where they are running.
Phil Knight started running at a time when people used to tag ‘weirdos’ for them.
It wasn’t a socially accepted athletic activity then.

Murakami and Knight both agree that to make pain beautiful, we have to follow the motto: “be yourself.”
‘Be yourself’ means be far from the crowd, be far from competition, be far from comparison, and be far from rejection.
Murakami had a decent restaurant bar business before giving up everything to become a professional writer and professional runner.
Phil Knight revolted to his family, especially to his dad and visited dozens of countries around the world before giving up his father’s decent media business.
When he was visiting Japan for his shoe business concept his mother dropped him off at the airport and wished him saying ‘be yourself.’

When we become our own uniqueness, as the slogan ‘be yourself’; pain and suffering no longer bothers us, it only becomes the motivation for the final destination.
Amelia Boone, one of our all time heros says, “I’m not the strongest. I’m not the fastest. But I’m really good at suffering.”
If we cherish suffering, life becomes marvelous.
Learn how to cherish the suffering.
Kudos to Murakami, Knight, and Boone!!!

In my own personal experience as I also run quite often, people who love running and run regularly have keen attachment to a few things.
In reality nature has given us two healthy feet to move our body, in that sense we all are born to run whether we run or not.
In addition, when we run we also become grateful to our two healthy feet so that our pain of running turns into a beautiful destination.
When we run we become grateful to oxygen in the air so that our pain turns into a beautiful breathing resource.
When we run we become grateful to our healthy body and healthy mind so that our pain turns into a beautiful thought.
When we run we pass objects, pedestrians, trees, and many other things, these passing things make us a connection which is humanity so that pain dissipates from the body.
This may be the reason there is a saying that if we run a marathon in our lifetime, we will never die from a heart attack.
I’m not sure whether it’s true or not but it definitely has some validity.

Many years ago I had a friend from India, he was a graduate student in computer science.
One evening many of his close friends gave him a party in his apartment, it was his 31st birthday.
I also attended his birthday party.
Few friends offered him different kinds of alcoholic drinks so he drank quite a few mixed drinks.
He was fine at the time when we all left his apartment around midnight, he greeted us good night.
The next morning his mom was coming to see him all the way from Bangalore, India.
He was excited to pick her up at the airport, he was constantly checking the flight time to make sure her flight was on time so he also set an alarm clock to remind himself that he doesn’t oversleep.
His diabetic mom was travelling alone because his dad expired 3 years ago due to a chronic kidney disease.
She could barely read in Hindi, an indian language, she couldn’t speak English, she couldn’t make telephone calls by herself.
After arriving at the airport at 8am in the morning, she took help from airport people and called multiple times on her son’s cell phone.
Her son didn’t pick up the call.
Due to a mixed alcohol hangover and probably by an alcohol reaction, he wasn’t fully conscious at around 8 am and woke up only at 11 am.
Though he knew the night before that he had to go to the airport to pick his mom in the morning at 8 am.
He saw more than 50 missed calls on his cell phone within a 3 hours period from 8 am to 11 am.
He was very sad but anyway he drove towards the airport.
He was devastated at this point not by anything but by his own irresponsible behaviour.
He told me, “he had so much pain in his body, he was shivering due to pain thinking about his diabetic mom.”
He said, “his mouth was dry, his headache was moving all around his head.”
He had a panic attack, his body pain was so severe that he pulled over on the side of the road for a couple of minutes.
He drank water because his body was dehydrated due to excess alcohol and he also washed his face with cold water.

Finally after 45 minutes driving he reached the luggage claim area at the airport, he saw his mom laying down on the bench.
He sighed, his eyes became teared.
He walked closer to his mom, he saw his mom’s face from a little close distance, he reached to his mom but couldn’t speak, mom also didn’t say anything, she only smiled.
Once he saw his mom on the bench at the airport and when she smiled, he said to himself, “Why is pain so beautiful?”

Few minutes ago, his body pain was excruciating, his headache was moving all over his head but once he saw his mom’s smile everything became clear, he had not even an ounce of pain in his body and in his head.
He only experienced beauty now, the whole pain is gone.
Once he approached his mom, he bent down, he touched her feet, and started to cry.
He sat flat on the bare floor at the airport and broke down, he couldn’t control crying.
His mom didn’t ask any questions, she wrapped his head around her arms, she didn’t ask why he didn’t pick up the phone, she didn’t ask why he was late, she didn’t ask what happened?
Finally he drove his mom to his apartment.
When they reached the apartment, he asked his mom, “‘Maa, can I tell you something?” ‘Maa’ means mom in indian language.
His mom replied, “sure, beta.” ‘Beta’ means son in indian language.
He touched her feet one more time and said, “Maa, I promise you I would never ever drink alcohol in my whole life from today onwards.”
His mom replied, “beta, I’m 62 years old now, I’m illiterate, the only degree I have in this life is trust. I trusted your dad and lived the fullest life when he was alive. I gave you birth, you are my everything now in this life, if I don’t trust you then who do I trust?”
Both mom and son smiled with teary eyes and entered the kitchen.

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

Just ponder, are you addicted to any of these: politics, religion and sex?

Recently I attended a virtual scientific conference.
I usually participate in these kinds of conferences when time permits me.
I work on science so I make a living doing it.
One of the speakers in the conference, a business management guru, said, “never ever talk about politics, religion, and sex in business networking session.”

I grew up in a society where people blindly follow politics and talk about it as a pastime.
I have seen a conflict between brothers, between sisters, between aunts, and uncles within a close family circle due to the favor and disfavor of their political affiliation.
I remember one particular incident regarding this between two brothers which is still fresh in my memory.

Both brothers were claiming that each of their political parties is the best one out of many others.
Both brothers were claiming that their political leaders are the best.
Their dad was an ordinary countryman, not highly educated but an literate, occasionally used to ask ‘why do political parties make us fight?’
He used to reflect and think, ‘is politics always bitter and divided?’
“What kind of lacking I had to raise my sons?” I frequently heard this whisper from his mouth.
Dad was unaware how politics enters into our life and ruins the profession of our living if we are not careful about it.
I was also quiet and just observing the argumentative political fight between two brothers with no verbal expression.
Elder brother was saying, “my political party liberated more people than any other political party so it deserves to form the government.”
The younger brother was saying, “my political party has made the most progress and development in the country than any other party in the history of government. My political party protected the country during many difficult junctures of foreign interventions so it deserves to make the government.”

It’s worthless for me to spend time on who is wrong and who is right and this is not my intention here because both brothers were not politicians by profession.
They didn’t make a living doing politics because the elder brother was a high school teacher and younger brother was an accountant in a private firm.
I didn’t say anything to either brother during this heated political debate.
I simply said, “each of you are saying I am right because each of you has a huge ego; ego of severe political addiction.”
“You are not saying I am right, your ego is saying I am right.”
“When you are addicted to something your ego always bolsters,” I added.
“You are not saying your brother is wrong, your ego is saying your brother is wrong because addiction suffocates the judgement.
I just added to the elder brother, “Hey brother, you’ve shared many things with your younger brother, you shared the same house and same parents with him, if you can’t align your political thoughts with him in a family, then how would you align so many other thoughts in your professional life?”
He didn’t respond.

Interestingly, during the middle of this intense argumentative and corrosive political fight, the elder brother’s daughter ran over and said to her dad, “dad, why don’t you say ‘sorry’ to uncle?”
Her dad paused, looked at his daughter and became speechless.
His daughter was just 13 years old.
The whole verbal political fight turned into silence.
His daughter was still insisting to her dad to say ‘sorry’ to her uncle.
Eventually, her dad said ‘sorry’ to his younger brother and both daughter and her dad left the scene.

When the word “sorry” comes out from our mouth in any situation, amazing things happen.
Serotonin produces and stabilizes our mood.
It also helps to change our behavior to make us feel good or at least comfortable.
Most importantly, we win over our ego when we say ‘sorry’.
Our relationship whatever it is, in this case brotherhood, wins over ego.
The word ‘sorry’ teaches us that family relationships are way more important than a conflict due to mere political ideology.
Not to mention politics, religion, and sex are the most sensitive and divisive part of people’s lives but they shouldn’t disrupt our family values and relationship.
We learn to create human values from inside the family to promote and uplift one another in the society.
Remember, the best time to make our family relationship stronger is actually before we need it.
We have to create value in an existing relationship rather than just capture the value from it.
Always nurture the value of brotherhood by thinking of small actions that you were involved in the family when you were young, this helps to push the edges of the relationship further.

There are many things in life that we have to prioritize but there are very few things which we can not prioritize and have to take in parallel, our relationship with family is one of them.
Think of this, your son is 4 years old and you are in medical school. You can’t prioritize your medical school over your son and say once I finish medical school I would start to love my son very much.
You can’t do this, if you do this you will regret in life even after having your medical degree.
Whatever happens in our life, our relationship with family should move in parallel.

Grudges and divisive arguments in the family are for those who are very short-sighted and can’t control their emotions.
People who forgive and say ‘sorry’ are generally far-sighted and can control their emotions in the family.

I requested both brothers who were fighting over the choice of political parties to go home and change the question to “is any political party wrong instead of saying my political party is right?” “Ask yourself, does any political party have a wrong manifesto?”
Always remember, no political parties are bad, each one has only a different path to reach the best society.
Similarly, no religions are bad, they are only the different forms of expression of human beliefs.
Quote, I am pondering, “Your well being, success, and humankind is reflected in the religion you are practicing right now. Don’t change your religion,” -Dalai lama, an author, spiritual leader, and nobel laureate.
In the similar way, we all know what sex is, how it works, and why we need it.
Do we really need to go deeper in it?
I don’t think so.

Each of these categories; politics, religion, and sex has extreme ends, we don’t have to go there, we absolutely don’t need extremes if we don’t make a living on these things.
If we make a living on these things then it would be a different scenario, for example, professional politicians, religious leaders, or adult movie makers.

Keep in mind, the beauty of politics, religion, and sex is always in the middle for those of us who don’t make a living on these things.
If we start to consume every piece of information regarding politics, religion, or sex, we surely become addicted and its very difficult to break.
Trust me, this is garbage, we don’t need it.

After coming to the USA for my higher studies, I experienced and saw some of the very unusual things.
On presidential election day in the USA, the entire country works and remains active on its business, it’s not a holiday. It shocked me initially.
I went to the grocery stores, and people were working as usual.
I visited public and private offices, people were working as usual, public transportation was as usual.
School and colleges remain open as usual. Nobody talks about the ongoing election. If you bring that subject up, people smile and say “let’s see who will win.”
Only during election night, we will see how people are divided into two parties almost equally half as democrats and republicans.

Donald Trump, the former president, wanted the supreme court to overturn many states’ election results so that he could stay as a president in white house for 4 more years.
This is the country where the supreme court denied the petition filed by former president Donald Trump to overturn the state election result with one-line ruling as follows:
“The application for injunctive relief presented to Justice Alito and by him referred to the Court is denied.”
Amazingly, the general public has no interest in the inside business of the supreme court.
There are no phones, no cameras, and no journalists allowed in the supreme court.
One line final decision by the judge.
This was also a big surprise for me to know how the judicial system works.

I’m bringing these aforementioned two cases here just to smell the perception of ordinary people with various other professions towards politics and the judicial system.
How does it happen? I have no clue, I’m still studying this.
This may be one of the reasons that american economy is still so vibrant that none of the organizations or businesses are politicized.

My one line understanding is this: if we politicize the workplace where we work for a living then it is highly likely that we become addicted to politics.
And same applies to religion and sex too.

One way to get rid of addiction from politics, religion or sex is twist a question away from “I and my.”
Once we do this we generally get completely different answers because our ego doesn’t control us.
If we reorder or rephrase the same question excluding ‘I and my’, we get a distant view of life, even though the motive of the question still remains the same.
With this approach, in many cases we solve very difficult problems, especially political and religious problems, there are many examples of it.
When we are angry or in disagreement with someone, we have to change the question and ask ourselves a different version of the same question.

Problems are not always solved by just asking the correct question to others or ourselves because there is no question which is wrong.
Problems are generally solved by reordering the same question so that we see different parts of the same problem.
Once we reorder the same question, different parts of the brain trigger and we get completely different answers.

Remember, when we argue or when we confront, we lose our control, this is normal and natural.
In life how we react to what happens determines who we are.
By the time we react, we already rearrange our thoughts, we rearrange our expressions more than what we initially had.

Once we take a question or answer away from us personally, we become more free and accepted.
Why does Elon Musk, founder and CEO of Tesla, think such a humongous and unpredictable task?
Why does he think 200 or 500 hundred years from now?
He thinks of colonizing mars for human settlement, because he is taking both questions and answers far away from him, because 200 or 500 years from now, he won’t be alive. We all won’t be alive. Legacy also comes into play when we go far personally from our question and answers.
The world we are living in right now is made by those who twisted the existence then, who ventured the unknown question, and those who thought about the uncomfortable question in their own new way.

When we reorder things, creation appears.
Rearrange the sofas in your living room, your mind says, wow, it’s gorgeous because your mind identifies the new creation.
Renew, refresh, reshuffle, reselect, reshelf, redecorate; all they have amazing things in common.
They change the dynamics of our brain.
They help to see things from different angles.
The Pareto principle also indicates the same: only 20 percent of anything produces more value, 20 percent comes from reselection.
20 percent of words of any language are mostly used in any conversation.
20 percent of stuff in our home we use again and again.
20 percent of products of any company sell over and over.
20 percent of spices the chef uses again and again to produce amazing dishes.
20 percent of our questions have the best answers.
The remaining 80 percent of all of the above are mundane and can not produce valuable outcomes.
Remember, when you say “I and my,” it’s mundane, it doesn’t produce the most valuable 20 percent result so that reselect your question.

Think of it this way, sugar is an essential ingredient in our life.
We need it to survive. But if we over consume it then it converts into more fats and that is the main culprit of our many health problems in modern life including cancer.
Overconsumption of anything is bad, including sugar.
Overconsumption is against the principle of reselection.
Don’t over consume anything in life including politics, religion, and sex.
Reselect the same so that we don’t over consume.
Let’s start by using one spoon of sugar instead of two spoons in our morning tea or coffee.
Let’s consume coffee or tea only two times in a day instead of four times.
Let’s consume the news only once in a day rather than to follow every piece of news during the day.

There is also one reason why we hesitate to reselect because we are social animals.
We tend to be skeptical of new questions and uncomfortable with change.
We are likely to stay with the same old question about anything.
We are likely to challenge anything new.
This is our nature.
We feel so comfortable living in a small echo chamber: the same old friends, the same colleagues, the same road to go home, the same food everyday, and the same kind of entertainment shows on TV everyday.
We are afraid of reselection.
If we have any new information coming in our mind, we have to trust it but we always have to verify it.
Verification is the reselection of the same old with new eyes.

Remember, we all will die sometime in the future, sad but true, and the desire to make us important all the time is just human nature.
That’s the reason we always say, ‘I and my.’
Accept this fact that we have to reselect our statement excluding ‘I and my’ even if we are right.
When we start to develop this skill we make a habit of saying “sorry” to the people.
To say ‘sorry’ is an acceptance that I’m accommodating you for my mission, you are more important than me, and I listen more than I talk.
We can’t beat human nature unless we know how to accommodate other humans.

There is another misconception out there that academically sound people are always right and they know more because we see these people leading in many places, we see these people on the stage, we see these people all over the places trying to control others.
Forget about their academic degrees; PhD, MD, or MBA if they are not using their expertise in the field where they make a living.
I’m sure you’ve also seen and worked with so many of these people who have these degrees but are the most absurd and polarized in society.
I have personally seen and worked with so many of these people who have PhD, MD, and MBA but are the most argumentative, short-tempered, arrogant, corrosive, and politically motivated.
I’m not saying all are bad, what I’m saying is, don’t follow them blindly.

Just believe, our formal education never prepares us 100 percent in the real world.
I believe I have some credit, at least, to say this.
I’ve spent 5+ years in my PhD and 4+ years in my postdoctoral training.
We must have real world experience to be successful in the real world.
This is not only by me, this is also by those who are successful in the real world who don’t have PhD, MD, and MBA but are generous, collective, and logical.
Apply the principle of reselection for these people too if they are influencing your lives directly or indirectly who have these tags of PhD, MD, and MBA after their name.

Real world education means starting a grocery store, traveling far from home without much money, driving a taxi to survive, and running 5K for the first time if you’ve never run before.
Real world education means studying your mind about what comes in the middle of your 5K run.
Real world education means trusting the gut and intuition and applying the feeling of that 5K run that never comes by sitting on the couch at home.
Just one living example, John Paul DeJoria, an entrepreneur and the founder of the Paul Mitchell line of hair-care products, started his business career with a loan of just $700 with a high school degree. He now owns a business empire worth $3.1 billion.
If we are involved in real world education, it owns us and we are more likely to quit the different forms of addiction in our lives.
Our gut, our intuition, and our real world experience is more powerful than the advice of PhD.
Asking many questions in life is a choice but tweaking the same old question over and over to get the new result is a decision.
Real world education is nothing new, it is the application of tweaking of the same old question to see our lives with a new lens.

Reorder the same old question in different forms and avoid things which are not important in life. This is called focus.
There are two types of real work we can do in this world depending on our personalities.
We can either work as a CEO of our own company or we can work for a CEO’s company.
If you drive your own taxi or if you own a grocery store, then you are CEO; if you are accountant or lawyer in a firm then you work for a CEO.
Both are equally important, choose what suits you the best.
We have to choose where we fit the best depending on our own personality.

Similarly, we can also select to work in two sectors: public or private.
Both are equally important, also depending on our personality.
Be either a public servant or work in private firms; be kind, be generous and always make a habit of saying “sorry”.
I personally prefer the private sector because it teaches us entrepreneurship in life.
If we know entrepreneurship, we can live freely wherever we go.
Keep in mind, we spend the 1st half of our life time learning and the 2nd half in working based on 1st half’s learning; this isn’t going to work in the 21st century and after.
This concept of education has already stopped working because it is based on the 19th century education system dictated by the industrial revolution.
Entrepreneurship is one of the tools to win over this old education system. The important thing is that it teaches us how to adapt to the fast changing environment. More than this, it teaches us how, where, and when to say ‘sorry’ to others.

Always remember, “sorry” doesn’t mean you are wrong, it only means you might not have reordered your old question.
The best time to say ‘sorry’ is when you realize that you are only a single dot in a sea of billion other dots, if you realize this at your core you never get addicted in anything including politics, religion, and sex.

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

“When she’d propose to marry me, I’d be happy, I’ll wait”, I simply chuckled, don’t know why?

He was in high school in grade twelve, so called intermediate second year then.
Our other dear friend was also in the same class but she was a little bit quiet.
She used to talk only about classes, teachers, subjects, home assignments, and exams, nothing more than tidbits about school life.
Occasionally, she used to go for snacks during break but only in a group of friends.
He was my dear friend and was interested in talking beyond that boundary of school tidbits, he was interested in talking about life, relationships, and future plans.
But it never happened because he was unprepared, he was scared, he didn’t have any maturity on how to express feelings or love to somebody else.
As far as I know, he never expressed his feelings to her, he always kept inside himself until he left the school.
Occasionally he shared his feelings with me but not with her.
He absorbed his feelings internally, I am not aware when and how he released it out.
I don’t know how he’s living his life nowadays but recently I made a connection with him via Facebook. Thanks Zuckerberg.
I’m sure there are many people out there who are in the similar situation as my dear friend.
I hope this content will help them.

Feelings convert into pain very quickly if it doesn’t get space to sprout.
After more than two decades now, I figured out how somebody’s feelings and love towards another person dissipates and infects the person internally.
If we live carrying the unexpressed feeling in life, this would be the road to disaster, this could be one of the root causes of our unhappiness.
Bronnie Ware, an Australian nurse and an author of “The Top Five Regrets of the Dying” a phenomenal book which is translated into 27 languages talks about unexpressed feeling as a number three regret of dying person.
Number three regret the dying: “I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.”

Few months ago, I remembered that my younger daughter insisted that I go to play with her in the park.
She told me to leave my cell phone at home. I was a little surprised but I could understand.
I asked her why to leave phone at home.
She said that you don’t interact with the park and you don’t enjoy it if you have your cell phone with you.
At that moment I told her, sure, I will leave the phone in the car and I will engage fully with the park.
I spent 30 minutes with her in the park without my cellphone but I saw her cheering face which I’d rarely seen before.
When I came home, I re-evaluated and mostly regretted how I spent the past years with my daughter.
The main reason I was happy that day was because I made my daughter happy by tweaking my small habit to allow her feelings to express.
She expressed quite a number of concerns and feelings during our 30 minutes park tour.

Like it or not, we are living in the world of instant gratification.
Our cell phone has become a tool of instant gratification.
We are caught up in the hustle and bustle of modern life.
We need everything instant, we have e-tickets, we have express check-outs, we have fast food drive-through.
We have microwaves and we need food in a few seconds.
We expect anything to happen in a few seconds to a few minutes.
We don’t expect to wait.
This pattern of life is making us more unhappy than ever before because we are losing the grip of life slowly, we are losing patience very fast.

I’ve also observed the other reason for our unhappiness, “the culture of more.”
We are living in “the culture of more.”
We have one nice house, we need a couple of more including vacation house.
We have one bike, it is working perfectly for our purpose, we need at least two more of different styles.
We have one car, working nicely, but we need one more luxurious car.
I am not against these luxurious things, I personally love them but I’m against the sense of their control in our lives at present and regret when we turn older. I wish I could have lived differently.

What we forget here is we have only 24 hours in a day, we can’t stretch it, we have just 24 hours, that’s it.
When we have more things to take care of, obviously we need to earn more money to maintain these things; a vacation house, a second bike, and a luxurious car.
We have to sacrifice more time to earn more money, not only that we have to also give extra time to maintain these extra things regularly.
Buying is just a first step, major responsibilities come after buying. We have to renovate the vacation house, we have to change the oil in the second bike and second car regularly.
These extra things are soaking all our personal time, sometimes knowingly, sometimes unknowingly.

When we create a little free space in our mind then only happy hormones roll the ball on us.
All our emphasis is going more on changing oil in the car rather than changing oil in our body.
Oh, today, I can’t go to the gym, I have to change oil in my car.
Oh, today, I can’t make dinner, I’ll eat frozen pizza because I have to finish the wall painting in my beach house.
All of these “more things” are making us stressed out, remember, we’ve only 24 hours in a day.
We don’t eat nutrient food because food is not our priority, we don’t drink enough water because dehydration goes unnoticed.
Our health is crumbling down because all the time we are hustling out for more things.
We easily become tired due to all of the above, we slept less, we spent less time with our kids and spouse.
If you don’t spend more time with your kids and spouse, you remain unhappy. This is a fact.
For those who don’t have kids or spouses, have a pet and spend time with it, a miracle happens in your life.
Keep in mind, more is not always better. If you know how to distinguish ‘the culture of more’ with ‘culture of enough’, you will remain happy throughout your life.

Our body stops communicating with our mind when we have no clue what meditation, gratitude, and mindfulness are, and how they balance our life.
We never dedicate any time for these things because all of our time is consumed by noise around us.
Meditation, gratitude, and mindfulness teach us a secret of life, here it is: our past is already gone, our future has not been written yet, the only thing we have is the present, so be happy and enjoy it to the fullest.

After a certain time we start to look outside for happiness, outside of our inner life.
By the time we know there is something imbalance in our life, it’s already too late.
Happiness is not outside, it is inside us.
Remember, outside may bring pleasure but it doesn’t always bring happiness.
Understand this fact, happiness is not pleasure, you can certainly buy pleasure for a certain time but you cannot buy happiness.

Think of the time, in school, asking your teacher why you had to learn national geography if you had no intention of using it in real life. Probably, your teacher might have said that you need to learn national geography for your brain development or college preparation or harsh case scenario, “because I said so.”
Now you are an independent adult with a fully mature brain.
Your teacher’s answer doesn’t apply to you any more.
Therefore, you don’t need to fill your mind with useless information.
Always believe what you see and what you do or plan to do, not what others tell you to believe.
You don’t need other people’s approval all the time in your life.
Information is already overloaded due to finger tip’s digital access.
What kind of value are you producing by remembering the names of all the rivers and forests of your country in 21st century’s education unless you are participating in a national quiz competition?
Now you are an adult, if anything that isn’t interesting to you or relevant to you by any means, don’t consume it.
Only consume what is relevant to your life.
Create an extra space in your brain by taking only things or experiences that are relevant to your life.
Don’t let junks walk all over your mind.
Happiness comes from things that matter to you, not from junks.

Happiness is a state of mind, to be happy we have to change our mind.
The interpretation of happiness is highly subjective and it is not an exact science.
Some people read Playboy to become happy, some people read physics to become happy, and some people read companies’ legal and financial reports to become happy.
Some people sing songs to become happy and some people do fishing to become happy.
You get the picutre, why there is so much variation in happiness because it is internal, it has nothing to do with other people’s choices.
We cannot find any good tool to quantify the level of happiness.
If I get my thing then I would be happy is basically an illusion.
If you are not happy now before getting the thing, you will not be happy after getting that thing also.
You must be happy first to get things, otherwise you will stretch your expectations all the time that never end. If it never ends then you never become happy.

Many people think that a lot of money makes them happy.
But in reality people who don’t have money think this way only that a lot of money makes them happy.
I am sure you have seen many people with a lot of money but still unhappy, they are unhappy because they still want only more money, I have certainly seen many of these people.
Here is the fact.
Money itself doesn’t make us happy, it is just a paper with pictures on it, but it gives us freedom and security.
We can utilize money to get freedom according to our interests that make us happy.
If we have nothing to do during our free time, then we again become unhappy.
Money is an amazing tool, one tool out of many, that provides us things and experiences that make us happy, treat it as such.

Happiness also comes from growth, it comes from trying new things, it comes from taking educated and calculated risks in life.
Learn to take big risks, learn to survive big failures. But most importantly, learn how to win big in life so that we can give back to society even bigger.
When we give to society, we become the happiest person because we make other people happy.
Think about your happiness level when you make your kids or your spouse happy, what do you feel? Just go a little bit further to make your neighbor or your community happy, you feel a rush of flow of dopamine and serotonin in your body.

Why didn’t my dear friend propose to our classmate in grade twelve?
Because he didn’t have courage to ask, he didn’t have a risk taking attitude.
Worst of all, what could have happened if he had proposed to her, either she would say yes or no.
Either answer would produce no harm to both of them, but by not taking the risk of asking he got only regret.
Imagine the movie industry and stock market, which movie is going to be a blockbuster and which stock is going to be a 100 X multiplier, nobody knows.
Nobody knows what’s going to work. We can just guess, an educated guess. We can be lucky by an educated guess.
But people who dedicate themselves to making movies or people who invest in the stock market keep doing the same thing. They just don’t expect only the best result, they enjoy taking educated and calculated risks, and when they win, they win big.
Remember, regret of not taking risk is permanent but risk itself is temporary.

People always doubt what you say because these are words but people always believe what you do because these are actions. Happy people love actions not words even though actions are risky.
We all have innate observational and investigative skills for any kind of actions, the only thing is we have to explore by using it.
Once you start exploring, you become more interested to explore more, you start to make flow of your exploration.
This flow institutes a happiness inside you.

Many celebrities are brand-conscious and we have a culture of following them on social media.
I’m not against following the ideal person but I’m against following blindly.
They all wear Gucci items and we try to imitate their persona.
They wear Gucci because they get paid from Gucci to attract the poor and middle class.
This comparison doesn’t make us happy because we are not celebrities, their personal values and our personal values are different.
I have seen former first lady Michelle Obama wearing a pair of J. Crew sage green leather gloves to hold the bible for her husband before a worldwide audience of 140 million plus on TV to be sworn in as America’s first ever African American president.
She could wear Gucci but she didn’t, she wore items from an ordinary retail store.
She did this because she is real, she is not a pretender.
I have seen Barack Obama also wearing J. Crew bow ties many times.
The Obama family declined brands, they showed their love for mass consumer retailers.
Only Louis Vuitton and Gucci don’t show our personality, they are just symbols of luxury.
Remember, luxury is not happiness, it is only pleasure.
To become happy, we must be authentic based on our priorities and values, not by comparing ourselves with Gucci wearing celebrities.

Understand this, you don’t possess happiness, you have to create it according to your own standards.
It is absolutely internal based on your personal expectations and reality.
If you are unhappy, immerse yourself in life with some passion.
We, as humans, came to earth almost 1.2 to 2 million years ago before the modern humans, Homo sapiens, appeared. At that time, there was earth, dirt, soil, rocks, and some plants on the continent.
Many animals appeared and disappeared but why did we humans always thrive?
Because we have a passion for progress, but animals don’t.
We have an amazing brain in our head which other animals don’t have.
The science about our brain is still mysterious, we barely know how it works, but when we associate our passion with it, it works fabulously. Don’t ask me how.
Passion ignites us, passion gives us a reason to live.
Once you have passion to live, you start to marry to yourself first before you marry anybody else.
Now you find a reason to live, you always remain happy.

Connect and engage your passion with your family, friends, and colleagues.
Start small, but start now, once you start, you will know exactly what to do, how to do, and when to do.
This passion would be your happiness project.
We have seen many happy people buying time with their passion but unhappy people waste time complaining about everything.

The mother of John Lennon, the evergreen artist of the Beatles, once asked her son, “what do you want to be when you grow up?”
John Lennon replied, “I want to be happy.”

Remember, if you love somebody, just propose today, take the risk and ask, don’t wait for the day that never comes in reality, the so-called tomorrow.
Accept the result and move on, you won’t regret, you feel proud that you asked, you will remain happy irrespective of the answer from the other side.
Good luck everyone, always be happy.

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina