Was I addicted to Facebook?

Why was I lacking focus in my required task?
Was I sick?
Not really.
Was I a victim of instant gratification?
Maybe, but I had no clue.
Was I a lover of pleasure rather than happiness?
I had no idea but I felt like I was addicted to something, and it was a strange feeling.
In the past I used to think alcoholism is addiction, drug or tobacco use is addiction, but later I realized I was addicted to something more unusual than that.
Now I firmly believe that addiction does not only indicate alcoholism and drug use, it also indicates lack of focus and concentration.

I am re-examining my past life, my past activities and how I was spending my time.
These are some other forms of addiction that I have seen in my surroundings, in my family, in my close friend circle, and colleagues.
Many are addicted to excessive web-surfing, they can’t stay even fifteen minutes without their smartphone. Smartphones are a tonic for them.
Some are addicted to excessive texting, they enjoy chat rooms more than their spouses and family.
Few are addicted to driving and texting, it’s fun for them rather than to wait until they stop.
Couple of my crazy friends are addicted to excessive sexting, let’s not go deeper, it’s self-understood.
Two of my former colleagues are addicted to excessive twittering, whoa, they love that twitter-bird, how fast it flies.

I was addicted to excessive facebooking, contemplating its influence in my life, I decided to invest some money in Facebook stock. How far can I go?
Everytime I surf, Facebook makes money, so why not take a small share of the profit?

When I became an excessive facebooker, I began to live in the past and dream about the future because I have less time to do the real work at the present moment.
I always procrastinated for my real work.
I used to open my facebook page to warm up my task but I never noticed the passing time.
In the end I regretted, I couldn’t finish the task.

Many years ago I had a family friend couple, who used to upload many happy moments pictures everyday on facebook.
My wife used to tell me how happy their relationship is.
I thought the same way for many years.
But three years ago we heard they divorced.
Me and my wife both became shocked.
After reading a book “Atomic Habits” by bestselling author James Clear, I realized that they were too busy to upload the pictures on facebook rather than to work on their real relationship.
Well, this is only my reporting, not a judgement, maybe they became addicted to facebook and couldn’t comprehend its caustic effects in their lives.
Not only Facebooking, any kind of addiction costs us enormously.
Most of the time, Facebooking teaches us to follow the digital shiny objects rather than spending time on real objects.

With Facebook, I have a personal relationship so that, please, allow me to go a little bit deeper here.

Facebook is a double-edged sword.
It helps to stay connected with the lives of people we care about.
Amazing, how far we have come due to technology.
We must salute the people who innovated this technology.
Kudos to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
But Facebook also tricks us into dreaming of other people’s digital happy lives.
Life is far from comparison as shown in Facebook.
We rarely see negatives of people’s lives on Facebook, everybody posts only their positives.
Life never becomes only of positives, it’s a conglomerate of both positives and negatives.
Ultimately Facebook is only a trailer, not the full movie, the real life is with us as a full movie.

I have another friend who spends a lot of time on facebook but he makes a living there, he is an advertisement optimizer. Facebook is his employer.
Facebook is his playground for his earning.
But I became the only addicted customer for facebook.
Anyway no regrets for the past. I learned from it and now moving ahead in life.

Alas, I forgot the worst, I used to surf facebook during pee break at 2 a.m.
What a shitty habit I had !

Why was I having a hard time to break the addiction?
It took a long time to crush the addiction.
Because it required work, hard work, mental work.
It required initiation where I was very lazy.
If no initiation, no beginning, and no flow.

One of my friends shared with me about another addiction that he is suffering.
He loves frequent changes of girl for love, which I have noticed quite regularly.
We may not think it as an addiction but it is also another form of severe addiction.
His family life is in choas.
This is the addiction to friction.

When we become addicted to something, this something brings deeper addiction due to repetition of the same habit with no realization of harm.
This habit doesn’t allow us to keep track of time.
When I was severely addicted to Facebook, I was also addicted to distraction, so I used to open my facebook page all the time even during time of focus reading and writing.
I was in love with distraction.
When distractions came my way, I stopped the task at hand and used to talk either past events or future plannings.
Distraction became my good buddy either to fear me or to show hope.
I wanted to finish my task but I was unwilling to turn off my facebook notification on my cell phone.
I used to respond to text messages immediately, absolutely no patience to wait.
I used to count the number of likes on my facebook upload all the time.
No regret, even at midnight.

I loved to be more reactive than proactive because I wanted to impress others by my comments, my shallow expertise.
I was crazy like a rat between two holes, I used to check my email more than hundred times in a day, maybe every 10-15 minutes.
I used to carry my smartphone all the time with me in my pocket, in class, in meetings and check the phone every couple of minutes ignoring what’s happening inside the room.
I couldn’t make good, healthy and intimate relationships with anybody because I never paid hundred percent attention to anybody because of my smartphone.
I was pathetically poor at listening.
The person who was next to me physically and to whom I was talking always felt unimportant and insulted because in our talk I used to text constantly to somebody else.
Author of “Start With Why” Simon Sinek says, “if you keep your smartphone in front of you on the table in an important meeting even if your phone is in silent mode or off, you are addicted to the phone. If you talk to anybody in person by holding your smartphone on hand, you are addicted.”
As Sinek said, whether it’s true or false, I lived with all of those habits.
Ultimately, I also became addicted to shallowness.
I hated focus and depth.
I became superficial rather than a person of depth.

One of my friends, who is a security analyst in a brokerage firm, has an interesting addiction.
As you know from his job title, he is not a celebrity, he is a normal person with a normal job.
When he comes out of bed, immediately, he surfs the tabloids.
Later he confessed to me he is addicted to celebrity-gossips, celebrity affairs, break-ups, and divorces.
He told me he couldn’t stop reading.
At one point he felt sick if he was not keeping up with Jennifer Lawrence, Kim Kardashian, and Namrata Shrestha.
Once he told me that those things have no value in his life but still he is addicted to reading them.
He realized it and said to me that he is wasting his precious time.

Spending time on celebrity twitter feeds, perusing the Facebook uploads excessively of the people we don’t care about is a self-sabotaging habit.
I love the quote from my favourite personal development expert, Jim Rohn, “you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”
In my view, we are also the average of the five habits we spend the most time with.

The bottom line is:
Without inspecting our life, our activities, and habits thoroughly, we can not expect something out of it.
When I was addicted to Facebook, I wasn’t aware of what I was doing.
Awareness comes only by knowing what we are doing in all aspects of our lives. It’s the same as peeling off each layer of onion even though we know there is nothing inside.
I was having the ripple effect of my addiction to my family and relationship.
At one point I became aware of its effect when I received the email from my daughter’s teacher saying that she is weak in reading comprehension according to her grade standard. This was just one ripple effect.

As a human being, we all are able to forgive and forget. We must be able to forgive our terrible habits and addictions, and we must be able to forget these habits and addictions as well.
We don’t need any counselling, advice, courses, or any other commercial products to kill our addiction.
All we need is we have to change our mind.
To say it simply, change is tough.
Mental change is extremely tough.
Remember: if we don’t bring mental peace and happiness which of course require findings, addiction will always follow us.
Be aware of your life.
Stay away from addiction.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina

Why am I so judgemental?

Few years ago, I was working as a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. One day I was returning home from work and I was on the metro-train in the street of Philadelphia.
At one stop, a man with two young boys entered the train, boys were not happy, they were crying. The man sat next to me and there were other people inside the compartment where I was reading some journal article. Many other people were also reading newspapers, some were busy on the phone, few were listening to music on earbuds, and some were just relaxing with closed eyes after a long day of work.
The train compartment, where I was, was mostly quiet.

The man who sat next to me closed his eyes but the two young boys were extremely active, basically they were in a rowdy mood, crying, running here and there, and they were snatching newspapers from other passengers.
This man didn’t open his eyes.
He acted as if he came alone, there were no boys.
Everybody inside the train compartment was really irritated and confused about what to do.
The whole serene environment inside the train turned into rowdy, noisy, and intolerable.
Everybody was looking at each other’s face because the adult man to whom these two boys belong was still in deep sleep, eyes closed.

I realized everybody was explosive inside with the man.
One lady across my seat whispered, “How irresponsible he is.”
I didn’t say anything but nodded my head to support her.
The scene became chaotic and uncontrollable.

Suddenly, one man across my seat stepped up and shook his shoulders, making him aware that he is with two boys and they are creating mess for others.
He said to the man, “Your boys are making too many problems, you should be responsible.”
The man replied, “Oh yeah, I should be.”
He added, “I lost myself, I became unconscious, I completely forgot I am with my boys”.
He said, “I am very sorry.”
His voice became brittle and said, “Their mom just died in the hospital, and they wanted to stay with their mom but I brought them home.”

Immediately after that sentence, everything changed inside the train.
The whole scene inside the train changed.
Everyone was shocked.
All the passengers inside the train immediately changed their attitude, behaviour, and perception towards the boys, even though the boys were still in the same rowdy behaviour.

The woman who whispered to me before and said him irresponsible was torn down.
I saw her moist eyes with tears.
She was trying to touch the boys as if she could cuddle them, I could read the emotion in her face.
I myself turned 180 degrees and became almost unresponsive.
I wanted to hug the man who was next to me but I couldn’t do that.
I couldn’t say anything, I became speechless, I guess I was trying to hide my tears in front of other people.
I remember somebody told me that emotions are fine in weddings and funerals but not in other places.
But I was unable to hide my emotion, my tears inside the train.
Emotions play a role in every part of our life but it’s up to us how we control them.

During this emotional mess, I got out of the train in my station and drove home from the train station parking lot.
My mind was full of those two boys’ pictures.
I even shared this experience with my wife at home.

I became so curious how this small squishy mass inside the skull works.
Why do I become so judgemental?
Why do I become so unconscious?
Why is this squishy organ inside the skull behaving so erratically?
Why does it allow me to change my mood, thinking and perception abruptly?

I was judging somebody fiercely a few minutes ago but immediately after knowing the fact I was regretting.
It’s not only one time that I judged one particular person, but how could I be completely non-judgemental?

Being judgemental is an unconscious human habit created from a raw mind, it is deeply seated in the human psyche.
We struggle to improve this habit because our brain works so quickly without giving us time for a second thought.
In majority cases, often the thoughts we perceive exist in negative ways in our mind.
Only the constructive and positive beliefs influence what we think or choose not to think.
Our judgemental practice runs on auto-pilot, entering into subconscious level, if we don’t work on to improve it.
We don’t become non-judgemental by any motivation, it happens only by mental clarity.
We must be aware of the shift of unconscious habit to conscious habit to succeed.

Our brain is designed to be unique.
Each of us is created or born uniquely.
We have different capacities and understandings, we are given different choices with various outcomes possible.
The way we think is also our choice.
There are a lot of things we can choose in our life.
We can choose one glass of wine or five glasses of wine tonight.
We can choose one cup of tea or five cup of tea in a day.
We can choose to go running outside or sit and watch the 10th season of friends on Netflix.
And most importantly, we can choose anything irrespective of the type of mind we possess.
Choice is the result of our brain action.
Thoughts are also the same, we can think positively or negatively based on our choices.

I recall David Hawkins’s words, an internationally renowned spiritual author and psychiatrist, in his book “Transcending the levels of consciousness: “My mind is like a sponge, it has absorbed all the information, but I’m still in the same place.”
Human mind is incapable of segregating judgements and biases from truths even though we all are aware of it.
We have to work and practice consistently on our mind to achieve this goal.

Though we have an unique mind but in case of judgement, why do we respond in the same way?
We all perceive various things in various ways and thus live in various structures.
But why do we all have the same judgement in situations like that I experienced on the train?

What exactly happens to our minds when we start to judge others?

When I heard the sentence, “Their mom died today;” my judgemental mind turned into the opposite direction.
Not only mine, all passenger’s minds in the train did the same.
I started to see the world of those two small boys in very different ways than the normal boys who have their mom with them.

The important pattern that I recognized is when the boys were creating problems, I became vulnerable of my own fixed judgemental mindset.
I became a victim of my own rooted perception.
My fixed mindset only blamed the dad of the two boys.
Before I shift to a fixed mindset in any scenario, I should have given some room in my mind to wiggle, so that I don’t turn into fixed ready-made thought.

Actually I could alter my judgemental mindset but I couldn’t do that because I wasn’t trained to do so.
Strong will, patience, and power to ask why to the mind, are essential to shift into a room of non-judgemental mindset.

I learned the lesson: quick reaction to our existing perception doesn’t do good.
I need a non-judgemental mindset for a positive change in my life.

The key in such a situation, I learned, is to wait before to make our preconceived ill notion public.
I should not try to hurry things along my existing beliefs.

I have a tendency to focus on what I don’t have and what I don’t see.
I don’t focus more on what I have and what I see.
This is one of the main reasons that I quickly judge others.
If I start to focus on what I have and what I see, the whole world changes for me.
I will move towards the zone of non-judgemental arena.

When I was next to those boys’ dad, I didn’t ask anything to him, I was only thinking what’s wrong with this man.
Many times I don’t ask questions, I simply prepare my answers.
Many times I don’t listen, I only wait to respond.
During the whole train ride, I wasn’t ready to ask the question, I wasn’t ready to listen to him, I was only thinking: Why was this man so irresponsible?

Human judgements are so vicious that they are key causes in polarizing relationships with other humans.
Let’s work together to empower human relationships by being non-judgemental.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina

Do you remember when you first took a big risk in your life?

Have you seen any person walking out of a ship as an underwater welder to rescue a sinking ship?
Of course, less likely.
It’s impossible without any prior training, and if it is done without training then it would be a senseless act.
But for a maritime army engineer, this could be a normal task.
The bottom line is the same task could be risky for some but normal for others.
The whole intention of this background is: risk clearly is personal.
Risk questions us who we are, what we do, how we prepare tasks, and most importantly, what do we see twenty to thirty year from now in our life?

Do you remember when you first took a big risk in your life?
How did it feel for you?
It’s quite the challenging experience for me when I was learning how to drive a motorbike in my upper teen age.
I wrote every single step of what to do in a paper and memorized.
I drove the motorbike almost half a mile on the first day without anybody’s assistance, just following the memorized steps very carefully.
Nothing serious happened to me that day, next day I did the same. In a week, I became at least a moderate driver without taking any help from another person. Fortunately, I didn’t harm myself physically, but I still remember it was a big risk.
I don’t recommend taking this kind of physically challenged risk to anybody, but it was an amazing mental experience for me.

Normal experience becomes mesmerizing when we are immersed in risk.
Before the pandemic, I had a discussion at the dining table of one of my friends’ homes.
I asked one of my friends, “Do you like gambling?”
He immediately replied, “No.”
He added that he has not received any ounce of luck in his whole life in any of his past endeavors.
I asked him, “Do you want to own a casino?”
He immediately replied, “Oh, yeah, of course.”
I was thinking to myself why people hate gambling but the same people love to own casinos.
The fundametnal is we enjoy other people taking risks but don’t want to take ourselves.
Even though owning a casino is still a risky bet but far less riskier than handling blackjack on the table as an individual player.
The casino owner has an edge with percentages so this is not considered risky.
They also sell their play book in their gift shops and other players buy it to win.
Casino owners know very well that when the play book doesn’t work.
And surprisingly, you can guess why drinks are free on the casino table, owning a casino doesn’t belong to risk-taking.

The underlying reason is that we are not taught to take risks in normal life.
Society doesn’t teach us to take risks, society teaches us to avoid risks.
The only way we learn to take risks is by taking more risks with minimum failures. We also stop scaring ourselves from taking risks.

It is quite common that we feel good after getting success and not so good after failures.
Life is a probabilistic game, and risks are inevitable in life.
They are not necessarily indications of failures. If we think risk-taking as an unnatural game, then we will certainly truncate success too.

If we want greater success in life, we need to take more risk; if we don’t want to take more risk, we will be mediocre or average.
Risk is everywhere no matter what we do in our life. I vividly remember the fire in a house of my friend; he lost everything he owned.
Many years ago, one of my friends was going to the office in the morning in New Jersey, and he was hit by a truck on zebra crossing and he died on the spot. My hands are shivering recalling that accident.

In the United States, around 50 percent of all marriages will end in divorce or separation.
This is quite shocking.
We don’t realize that marriage is also a kind of risk if we don’t know how to grow and nurture a family and a relationship.
Most of us try to predict how the person we are dating will turn out as a spouse based on how he or she speaks to us or how he or she holds a knife and a fork to eat chicken pieces during dating days.

This tells me RISK is not only a four letter word, we have to learn how to live with it.

Risk taking is a part of education in our learning process.
Nobody gets success just by taking risks.
We have to spend a hefty sum of time around risk, we have to think big around risk, and most importantly, we have to work subconsciously 24/7 around risk to get anticipated results.

Are you willing to undertake risk?
A fulfilling lifestyle integrates the strength of risk-taking. Some of life’s greatest fulfillment comes from accepting risks in multiple forms.

The average person is a risk-avoider who wakes up in the morning, has coffee and breakfast, goes to the office, has lunch, comes back home in the evening, has dinner, watches TV, and sleeps.
The cycle continues. If he or she has some extra dollars, put it in the saving account.
He or she never takes risks in life.
There is nothing wrong with this habit but this cycle never revolutionizes and transcends the society.

There are some other people like investors and traders, venture capitalists, inventors and entrepreneurs, who keep grinding on odd hours, and most importantly take immense risks putting themselves outside the box.
If they fail also, they learn from it and take another calculated risk, and eventually succeed. They know how to create emotional diversification on risk.

People grow in exponential ways when they place themselves in risky environments that enhance their strengths.
Bill Gates to Mark Zuckerberg, they all took immense risk, they dropped out from graduate school, they went from a stagnant environment to one that multiplied their strengths.

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, dropped out from graduate school and turned his dorm room project into one of the top multi billion dollar companies on the planet.
He is the most successful entrepreneur of our time, he became the synonym of innovation, vision, and leadership.
He is certainly a risk taker.
Only risk taking taught him self-mastery and the process of improvement in the journey of his entrepreneurship.

The truth is that when we age, we become less enthusiastic, less optimistic in our goals, and a lot weaker in risk taking.
We aren’t necessarily against taking risk but we simply lack the beauty of risk-taking.
How we relate to risks very much impacts our life experience.
Our brain grows when we compel it to learn something out of reach at the moment.
By the process of neurogenesis, we develop new brain cells that catalyze new learning.
Risky tasks allow us to make mistakes, but that also challenges us how to move forward.

From my motorbike driving experience, I can tell that risk-taking is about developing positive emotional experience.
It invites exercise of hidden talents and skills to transform the process.
We definitely become idealistic thinkers to realistic thinkers, we learn to challenge the status quo, and move the ball forward.

Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, was admitted to Stanford University for his PhD but left after only two days, deciding to test his entrepreneurial spirit.
He never returned to finish his PhD at Stanford.
He also took immense risk to venture out entrepreneurship instead of a relatively stable PhD path.

Taking risks helps us to build the best within us that gives us energy, that also allows us to persist beyond unimaginables and unthinkables.

Many people are passionate in their profession but very few dedicate their time for reflective thinking. Reflective thinking is a tool for risk takers.
Reflective thinking clears the mind and pushes the limits of action.
This is also a cognitive exercise in some way.

One great experience of reflective thinking I realized personally is when I myself became a dad to my kids. How much care and sacrifice my parents did for me, I understood and felt the importance of parents in life on a deeper level than my existing understanding.

We all develop our strengths by using both physical and mental exercise in fresh and stimulating ways.
Physical and mental exercise both stimulate our core talents, skills, and interests.
This might be one reason after finishing five miles running, I become more motivated to run seven miles even though my stamina may not allow me to do that.
Without fresh inputs producing better stamina for my body, I risk to weaken my strengths leading to the concept- if I don’t use my body with respect, I lose my body.

We all say that profit is the single most essential ingredient in a successful business, a positive cash flow is equally essential for our finances. We should not deviate our business which hampers the cash flow.
Similarly, we should not take any risk that crumbles our life in a second.
The proportion of risk comes with research, preparation, and analysis.
We must complete the sentence, “I want to take risks to accomplish ……”
We, of course, need time, knowledge, and discipline to take risks in life.
Risk in itself should be our plan.

Only experience doesn’t take us to expertise if we don’t do research and don’t show willingness to take calculated risks.
E. Paul Torrance has beautifully expressed in his book, The Nature of Creativity, “Don’t be afraid to “fall in love with” something and pursue it with intensity.”
Creativity follows passion and deliberate passion attracts risks.
The most essential part of life is to make sure we are spending sufficient time studying risks, not just studying safe routes and safe destinations.
Amazingly enough, not every risk in life leads to success.
The risk-setup is a probability outcome that, if followed over time, should lead to lasting success in life.
Risks may take us to loss and frustration; but it is how we react to them determines our future success.

Finally respect your limitations, never test the depth of the water with both feet.
This is not called risk-taking, this is called pure idiocy.

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

Is it essential to be beautiful?

Few days ago I was watching a kid’s movie with my daughters on Netflix. Suddenly, two teenagers started to fight over the issue of their beauty. My elder daughter looked at me and laughed.
I laughed with her and told her that they are fighting in nonsense.
My elder daughter asked me, “Dad, is it essential to be beautiful?”
I paused for a moment and didn’t reply with a straightforward answer.
I simply replied to my daughter, “It depends on your perception of what beauty means to you.”
I elaborated to her that someone might be beautiful for me but may not be beautiful for you.
I gave a simple answer to my daughter but this topic was really complicated to deal with an eleven years old girl.

One of the reasons it is complicated is because of the current media. They always present tall and skinny women as the most beautiful.
In addition, they present flawless complexions, nice teeth, younger face, fuller lips, and smooth skin as beauty symbols.
I was thinking to myself, what kind of impact does it give to my eleven years old daughter?
As the media portray, how much percentage of women are in that level of beauty around the globe?

I told my daughter, “In reality, these women’s pictures shown by the media are not real. You have to understand this. Everything you see on the screen is edited.”
How can I make my daughter understand that part of the hidden story?
This is hard to believe just by saying. We generally believe our impressions and act on our desires.
To understand the rules of beauty, my daughter must be able to recognize the illusory pattern on the screen and what she understands about it.
All illusions are not visual, this is the biggest secret of the beauty industry.
The background behind these tall and skinny women is mysterious for my daughter.
It is easier to recognize other people’s beauty than our own if we become victims of our own illusion.

To get a deeper understanding of this issue, I told my daughter to launch her own youtube channel.
Nowadays she does magic in pictures and videos in her channel.
We all are aware how much we can do by digital editing in those pictures and videos.
Initially she was not interested in video works but as we become skilled in a task, its demand for energy diminishes.
Brain study shows that pattern of activity linked with any task changes as our skill increases, with fewer brain regions involved.
Nowadays my daughter is very quick to edit pictures and videos.
She makes pictures and videos amazingly different in various forms than originals.
I realized that we all are born prepared to perceive the world around us, recognize objects, direct attention, and focus what we like.
It is not the most beautiful from outside that attracts us, it is the one that is the most adaptable to change the status of beauty.

Once my daughter told me that we are most scared of dying, public speaking, and losing money.
After these three, fourth is being wrong and fifth is not being beautiful, especially for us, girls.
I immediately replied, “How did you know this?”
She replied, “I read somewhere in the book, but for me number five is quite surprising.”
“In my view, beauty should be the confidence to achieve something bigger,” she added.

People who engage in a cause larger than themselves are the most beautiful women in the world.
Malala Yousafzai, Anuradha Koirala, and Oprah Winfrey are some of the representations.
I can’t understand how an eleven years old girl brings such an image around her mind.

I recalled the experience of trying to peek at the beautifully dressed lady at the neighbouring table in a restaurant many years ago when I was in undergraduate college.
That was the consequence of my fast thinking on beauty but the result of slow thinking could be quite opposite. This understanding came to me after reading “Thinking Fast and Slow” by Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman.

I told my daughter, “If you really want to be beautiful, there are several ways of achieving the same goal, but you should not quickly gravitate to the least demanding course of action; buy and use expensive cosmetics products.”
I added, “Belief in yourself is beauty that is important for success; flexibility in your self-belief is the cornerstone for sustaining beauty.”

The hardest route to become beautiful is a daily healthy diet and healthy habit.
These two things should be routine, and routine should not feel like routine.
Laziness is constructed deep into our own nature. We generally don’t act on pressing needs, this is not because we are lazy. We always operate on a certain principle that makes sense for us evolutionarily. We have a habit of conserving energy, if we see a threat, either we fight or flight against it but if it feels safe for us, we don’t waste energy.

Beauty is not only the ability to be seen charming, it is the ability to find charm in surroundings and to deploy attention when needed.
To feel beauty differently, we must see differently than others.

When we feel beautiful on purpose, we feel deeper connectedness, we feel making contribution.
I told my daughter, “Effort in healthy habits and healthy diet is a cost, and the acquisition of beauty is driven by the balance of advantages and costs.”
“You don’t have to struggle to become beautiful if you are spending time to make your purpose and tasks beautiful around you.”
Keep in mind my cutie pie, “Switching from one habit of buying La Prairie and Dior products to another of healthy habit is effortful. Self control gives you lasting beauty but requires effort.”
“But it will be worth it in the long run.”

Beauty should be a part of our discipline because discipline is required for any great undertaking: Serena William brought beauty in tennis, JK Rowling brought beauty in Harry Potter, and Rosa Parks brought beauty in the freedom movement.
Beauty alone can not substitute for skill, talent, and insight.
Remember, it is not enough to be beautiful; you must be consistently beautiful in your attitudes and behaviours.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina

Do you carry hand sanitizer in your everyday bag?

Many years ago I visited a dentist for my tooth pain and the dentist asked me a question, do you floss your teeth regularly?
I said, “Sometimes, but not everyday.”
Actually I had never flossed my teeth up to that point, many other dentists had suggested me before to floss but I never took it seriously.
I lied to the dentist because I felt uncomfortable to tell the truth.
Dentist immediately replied to me, “If you don’t floss your teeth regularly, your four teeth will be gone in six months to one year.”
I startled, I pitied myself, I realized how negligent I was. In addition, I also realized how severe my teeth condition was.
From that moment to this day, I haven’t missed flossing even if it is 30 seconds or one minute everyday, if I am at home.
I love my life and I love to have my clean and healthy teeth in my mouth, and I believe everybody should.
Nothing comes close to good health in life.
I didn’t adapt to this habit of flossing until it became severe and the dentist warned me of several negative consequences.
This isn’t only my story, there are many similar stories of other people.

We all go through different periods in life when we are in tune with our desire and anticipation, taking one activity after another. When everything we do turns to a positive experience, that’s the time to get involved actively in the continuation process and also start to seek new good habits.
Of course, there would be difficult times like at present with pandemic coronavirus when everything we touch might result in a complete disaster.
We also have to go through periods when our habits contribute to chaos in the society, reminding us one unfortunate moment after another.
At the time of writing this piece of content, the USA is suffering with more than 40,000 coronavirus cases in a day. This is an insanely big number and many of them are contributed by our own habits.
It’s important to recognize such painful periods and not push ourselves but rather step back and think before to act.
This is the time to think about how we can reduce or avoid the spread of viruses.

Many of us react to habits like frogs to hot water. If we throw a frog into hot water, it’ll jump in response to sudden pain but if we put a frog into cold water and heat it slowly, we can boil it alive. If a sudden habit change hits us, we jump from its pain, we quit it immediately.
Initially I felt the same way when I didn’t have a flossing habit.
On the other hand, I also noticed that consistent slow habit change can be very effective if the results of the change give positive feelings gradually.
I noticed no bleeding from my gums. I experienced it and enjoyed it.
More often we don’t feel ready to start anything that we never did before, we postpone and postpone, but once started, we keep on running, we can’t stop it.

The first news story on the viral disease HIV/AIDS published in the gay newspaper, New York Native, in 1981. AIDS was first clinically reported with five cases in the United States.
This disease completely changed the sexual habit of humanity across the globe.
Now a days we all adapt safe sex practices immediately, if need be.
We learned the lesson and safe sex habit is ingrained in society like an essential norm due to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).

I never bought hand sanitizer before for household purposes.
I always bought only hand soaps and shampoos.
Judgements and decisions are not always rational. Most of the time these are based on psychological principles of how we perceive and process information.
I always believed that washing hands with soap is way more powerful than using hand sanitizer, but sometimes circumstances also help to change our habits.
I could buy and use hand sanitizer before when I was out of the house and had no access to soap water. But I didn’t do it because I didn’t feel the necessity depending on how I process information through my brain.
But now my habit changed because I processed information differently due to some external factors like pandemic coronavirus.
I started buying it regularly and the pandemic has created this habit in me.
This is only a small example of my personal habit change.
And I hope you are also having similar experiences.

The coronavirus pandemic will change social life in the same way as AIDS virus did in our sexual life.
Due to the nature of pandemic at the moment we must accept hygienic social life: Wear mask in public places all the time, don’t mix up with groups, don’t shake hands or hug to people, don’t indulge in partying, avoid or reduce mass gatherings, avoid or reduce public transportations, always have sanitizer in your bag when you travel or go to new places.
Try to avoid theatres, concerts, and stadiums as possible; instead look for alternative ways of entertainment and sport activities at home.
If you really need to travel, go with extra precautions.
At the moment these may look strange but when we start to accept them slowly, these become our new normal.
During this pandemic period, movie theatres are empty but netflix is blooming; stadiums are empty but computer gaming apps are at their peak.
This is how we are forced to change our habits and society follows it.

We have a “monkey see, monkey do” attitude in society.
In the beginning some of our activities may look somewhat out of track because they differ too sharply from the group practice.
This always happens in the initial phase of a new beginning like this phase of coronavirus.
Change requires courage and it begins with a single person.
Standing alone for change feels scary in the beginning, and most of us like to huddle, but in the time of crisis like at present, it is safer and wiser to stand alone.

Nowadays, my office is accustomed with zoom and other forms of online meeting forums.
We are comparing the results of online meetings and their effectiveness with pre-pandemic in-person meetings, if we found better results then we would continue this as a new office trend even in the post-pandemic period.
Society prioritizes things in terms of working culture and its effectiveness.

Most of us conduct our lives as if we will live only today and tomorrow-repeating the same mistakes, not learning from the past, and hardly ever planning for the future.
This comes to my mind when I see people on beaches in Florida and California during the coronavirus pandemic.
Unconscious mind doesn’t have the notion of time.
Our deep-rooted wishes remain largely unchanged throughout our lives.
A habit is a plan for some people but no habit is also perfect for some others. As Mike Tyson said, “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.”
But crises like this pandemic must bring change even in unconscious people’s minds so that we all remain safe.
Our survival and success depend on our willingness to adapt changes in life while they are relatively small.
We can’t be irresponsible and spread the virus all around.

Some of us focus only on the present moment because we pay little attention to other people’s life.That is just another sign of being caught up in quick pleasure.
Crowd in Florida beach during a pandemic like this is a perfect example.
People with no social responsibility are more likely to keep pushing these habits until their own lives become crippled by its consequences.
The education of time is a good sign of civilization, and this is the time for education.
An intelligent person is likely to take a break in deteriorating habits, continue to monitor the surroundings, and wait to get in gear with social mingling.
An educated person is aware of time, while someone who is acting impulsively is not.
Any person who pays attention to the current virus becomes aware of its enormous impact in the society.

Society always tends to flow in channels, like rivers in their valleys, but we should be the creators of channels.
When a society feels an isolation, it turns negative. When it feels the group, it turns positive.
This is just the rule of society but sometimes we have to learn how to ignore the regular social trends.
The wave of coronavirus will affect immensely in a negative way for our economy, science and invention, and social mobility for a very long period of time.
We have already experienced a lot of negative results from different corners of society.
But let’s hope that this negative effect will turn to a positive outcome soon by changing our personal and professional habits, our attitudes and practices, and work cultures.

Our mind is looking for an order- a society free of coronavirus.
We have to make it and let’s make it possible.
Remember, only discipline and good hygienic habits will help to break the chain of coronavirus.
Once again, remember, this endeavor starts with each one of us, and please, don’t forget to have a hand sanitizer in your everyday bag.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina

Are you suffering online? I am.

I received a phone call and my friend Sam asked me, “What are you doing at home during stay-at-home order, anything new?”
I became more aware of how I am spending my time. Little regret but no complaint.
“Nothing, same as usual.” I replied.
Actually I read two non-fiction books besides my regular professional books, journal articles, and reviews; the first non-fiction book was “Contagious” by Jonah Berger related to branding and the second one was “Poor Charlie’s Almanack” by veteran investor Charlie Munger related to investing.

The first most important lesson I learned during stay-at-home order: How painful it is to be online at home without in person or face to face interaction with the outside world.
All the time either talk to family members or spend most of the time on the screen.
I got more time with my family, there is nothing wrong but I also realized the value of face to face in person interaction more than ever as one of our human evolutionary spirits.
I used to think someday online digital work will replace the onsite in person work.
But now, I highly doubt it.

Life is a series of social and face to face in person interactions. These are vital- if you interact in person more, it works for you; but if you don’t interact in person, it weakens you, it decays you internally.
Our biology corrodes us from inside.
I am reporting only my sincere observation. I have not studied a scientific foundation to support it. But I strongly believe there is some connection to explore.
This is only my personal observation and feeling of the past few weeks.

Talking and sharing information in person are some of our most fundamental human behaviours.
In person actions connect us, shape us, and make us who we are.
Our words from mouth are not always persuasive online on the screen as they are offline.
There is always a hype around social media so that we ignore the importance of offline words from mouth.
Now it is the proper time to ponder to understand the value of being offline.
Think of your offline conversation for the first time with your dating partner after having multiple online conversations.
Being offline is about spreading love and life.
And being offline is natural, sustainable, and healthy.

Recently during this stay-at-home order, one of my friends, an assistant professor in university, complained to me, “Online teaching is boring, I have no enthusiasm to teach, I don’t see my students lively and most importantly, I don’t feel their expressions.”
“My teaching is very dry.” He added.

Now I am a firm believer that offline conversation is way more powerful and prevalent than online messages.
We were devaluing the offline activities because we like to spend time online, and never actually compared the difference between online and offline.
Now this is the moment to compare.
Facebook, Twitter, Zoom, and Youtube are technologies, they are not living things. They provide strategies to perform the task but can not replace the human liveliness.
Do you know why facebook and twitter conduct in person conferences spending so much money and resources?
Because these giant technologies inventors know at their core that humans are built to transmit the power of words via face to face in person interaction.
They are quite aware that their invention is just one tool of many to expedite human experience, but not to replace the same.

The second most important lesson I learned during stay-at-home order: There is a huge difference between spending time with family and with the outside world.
Family is our fundamental, a craft of social creation, but beyond family there is a growth elevator, an artistic part of life.
Art requires a significant amount of time to master but it happens mostly outside of home with colleagues, coworkers, mentors, and advisors.
This is the main reason we have neighbors to share neighborhood news, we have schools and universities to learn, we have shopping malls to shop, and we have our offices to work and collaborate, just to name a few of them.
We can appreciate our family time as a crafting time but our outside home time is interaction time for our artistic growth.
Learning art in life is a process and that happens through talking to friends, neighbors, coworkers, and observing gestures of mentors and advisors rather than inventing it online at home.
When we meet and talk to others, we don’t only transfer information; we transfer something about ourselves. Being outside home is about tapping our genuine enthusiasm for whatever we find useful, fun, and beautiful for us.

Outside home interaction is more than simply nodding, responding, and listening.
Understanding yourself is the secret of outside interaction.
People who make mistakes often are those who allow their emotions to control their decisions, which is one of our biggest enemies when it comes to poor social interaction.
For example, I have made more poor decisions online than offline personally.

We are missing many things during this stay-at-home order.
We are not getting a chance to chat at a party or eat with our coworker.
We are not having face to face conversation in churches, temples, chaitya, and mosques.
We watch movies at home but don’t get a chance to share with a colleague during lunch.
What do you feel when you don’t get a chance to share the hilarious movie plot with your best friend at coffee break?
Nothing is more satisfying and thrilling than when you and your friend go to a cozy restaurant and dine with full swing of chat and giggles.
This is called human necessity and we are missing it terribly.
We are understanding its value more than ever before.

We can share our thoughts and opinions online but nothing can replace offline chat, meeting, and laughter.
We are excited to talk about our vacation plans with our close friends at dinner gatherings, but now it has become a distant memory.
Imagine telling a story in front of a group, how entertaining it would be rather than posting online.
My kids are not able to share the warm weather with their close friends to go fishing.
My daughter once asked me, “What is the price of freedom?”
I said freedom is priceless.
Her question was sarcastic because we were planning to go Orlando, Florida, Disney World, and my daughter had a dream to shake hands with Mickey Mouse and Goofy.

Ultimately, we are social animals, our words from mouth need people around us, their expressions, and our instant responses.
We are missing all of these.
Let’s hope that we will go back to normal soon.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina

Have you ever used algebra and calculus in your life?

One of my former student asked his math teacher, “ Why do I need to know algebra and calculus?’’
He further questioned, “Where do I use it in my life?’’
His teacher gave him all abstract answers, not a single concrete and real life experience answer.
One of the answers was – “Algebra teaches procedures to manipulate symbols for better understanding of the world.”
Another answer was- “Calculus teaches the relationship between variable quantities.”
My former student was suffering in algebra in high school, so he didn’t grasp any information what his math teacher said to him and took the same question to two other professionals.
The first person was a doctor, MD in internal medicine in his city hospital, and asked him the same question.
The doctor replied to him, “I never used algebra or calculus in my life, except to use it to get admission to medical school.”
The second person whom my student asked the same question was his dad’s 81 years old math teacher, and again he asked the same question.
His dad’s old math teacher said, “I never used algebra in my life except to teach algebra at high school for living.”

Whether you agree or not, these two professionals are telling the truth. In most situations, the so-called subject experts especially in science and math like my former student’s math teacher provide a curse of knowledge.
Many journal articles, science stories, and reviews are written for other same people like authors, not for the general audience.
The main concern is why don’t we connect the general audience?

We have to make our science and math with a message that makes most of the ordinary people care.
Don’t let the curse of knowledge prevent you from expressing it well.
Take off the jargons, show how knowledge, discoveries and ideas are associated with things that ordinary people care about.
Knowledge is useless until we know it has value for others.

Have you ever tried to answer these questions?
Who are you as a person?
What are you trying to do with your life?
These are hard questions to answers if we go in depth but easy to answer superficially.
We can connect the first two questions with the following question. The answer to the following question comes how you answer the first two questions.
Is knowledge the means or the end for you?
So, what do you think the algebra is? The means or the end.
My former student is a 12th grader. I don’t know when he considered himself a proponent of real life education.
He told me, “I’ve met people with 10 times less knowledgeable than me and 10 times more knowledgeable than me in algebra, and people 10 times more knowledgeable than those- all of these knowledgeable people are truly dirt poor in knowledge of algebra in front of the professional wrestler lady I met in one event.”

He asked the same algebra question to a lady, a professional wrestler.
She said, “Yes, I’ve used algebra in my whole life, to achieve success in my field. Even though I never did any abstract algebra calculation in my life after high school, it helped me to think properly and logically in order, it gave me a tough brain training which I utilize every single day in my life.”
Only knowledge doesn’t help, but it’s connection to real life boosts us.
Many people in the core field of math and science like my former student’s math teacher forget that other people don’t know what they know.

How do we convey the work of scientists and mathematicians for an ordinary audience of nonscientists is challenging. To understand this part we need to communicate a gap in our knowledge.
The tendency to become overconfident about how much we know about the raw data and algebra needs to be addressed.

Math and science language are often abstract, but life is completely different, it is beyond abstract.
Abstraction makes it difficult to understand an idea and its connection to life.
Our brain contains so many tools that create connections.
If connection is so powerful, why do we slip so easily into abstraction?
Experts speak different languages, they think abstractly on math and science but ordinary people think on real ground.

Our experts on R&D want to make complex and sophisticated products and technology, but our customers or ordinary people want easy and reliable products and technologies.
The goal of ordinary people and customers isn’t meet.
Exactly the same applies in conveying science language, the huge communication gap exists.

It is estimated that only about 20 percent of papers cited have actually been read. Research shows that an average paper in a peer-reviewed journal is read completely by around 10 people.
This clearly indicates that the impact of most peer-reviewed publications even within the scientific community is infinitesimal.

Concise communication is a way of bringing math and science in our community.
Brain works on the concept of visualization, therefore, it helps to transform math and science to another level.
How did the wrestler lady visualize the high school algebra in her professional life?
She connected the lesson of algebra to her emotional maturity, and she conveyed it nicely to my former student.
She can inspire others why algebra is important in high school, her message carries emotion and strength.
Algebra not only helps to solve complex math problems or secure good grades in tests but also makes you think tougher in life.

Emotion and personal connection are more powerful to convey the message of abstract materials like math and science.
Most of our peer-reviewed journals begin with an abstract.
The beginning is already very dry for the general readers.

Robin Warren, a staff pathologist at a hospital, and Barry Marshall, an internist in training, discovered H. Pylori bacteria which causes ulcer in our body.
Initially nobody believed, especially the experts in the area.
At one point in Marshall’s life, he poisoned himself to prove his science due to desperation. Ordinary people paid attention, read their stories, as a result in 2005, they got Nobel prize in medicine for their work.
Science and math speak volumes, emotions, and diversity because it brings a broader audience to a cause, cause to improve life and cause to cure life.

When my daughter asks me, “Tell me a story,” at bedtime, she is looking for entertainment, not any instruction or knowledge.
I tell a story about periodic table, but not as abstract science, elements, symbols and names, columns and rows.
By my story, she makes the picture of a periodic table in her mind.
She shouldn’t remain only a passive listener.
The story provides the context of knowledge to my daughter which is missing in abstract science.

The wrestler lady, her story about algebra, its understanding and putting it into a real life framework is inspiring to others.

When my former student asked an algebra question to MD doctor, the doctor said, “When I was becoming a doctor in medical school, I needed every answer of my body organs as well as expertise. But now I have to convey my expertise to the masses.”
He added, “I must dissociate my expertise from the curse of knowledge. I know many things that the general audience don’t know but I should get around the general audience to share the information. I need to communicate as if I am in the audience.”

How we relate our work, our findings to the day-to-day work and day-to-day people is how we set our value in life.
Some of the existing curse of expertise needs to be cured.
We become a medical doctor with MD without taking a single communication class.
We become a CEO of a business with an MBA without taking a single class in communication.
We become a professor of mathematics with a PhD without taking a single class on how to teach and how to communicate.
Due to these leaks in our system, knowledge becomes a curse for the general audience.

Imagine attending an hour-long powerpoint presentation from an expert and nothing sticks in your memory after the presentation, you are just exposed with a curse of knowledge.

Remember, people care more about individual impact than they do care about abstract math and science.
Even though many current students are struggling to learn algebra and calculus in school and many of their math journey ends there.
At present most engineering designs are replaced by computer software so the real application of our algebra and calculus is debatable.
Anyway, utilize the power of algebra in your life, everybody.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina

What is common in these giants: Rosa Parks, Charles Darwin, Sir Isaac Newton, and Stephen Wozniak?

It was a Friday evening in July 2019 and I was playing with my kids at the center of a grassland around the children park in Richmond, Virginia.
One of my friends called me and complained that his daughter is not sociable at all. She prefers to read a book of 700 pages in a quiet room rather than watching a funny movie with us on Friday evening.
He worries that she doesn’t have friends, and asks me what’s wrong with her?
He has enrolled her in different classes: a kumon math class, a piano class, a traditional folk dance class, a taekwondo class, and a French tutor.
Along with the same complaint, my friend also praised that his daughter is very good in English both in reading and creative writing, but she is lagging behind in French class so that she visits a French tutor two times a week.
He mentions that all of these classes are either after school or on weekends.
He tells me that she is only interested in piano class but all other classes she is attending for the sake of his satisfaction.
He asserted to me that he wants to make her more outgoing and extroverted, because she is too quiet and too shy.
His worry is how she walks with life in a world full of extroverts?
I was shocked when he put his daughter in the pool of introverts and assumed her introversion as her biggest weakness.
He tells me about three things that are needed to succeed in life: social personality, verbal talent, and glamorous attraction.
I neither argued with my friend nor gave any suggestions or opinions from my side.
I only told him that you’ve got a gem at home, nurture her love for solitude properly rather than running behind shiny objects all weekend. The love for loneliness could turn into extraordinary soon.
Before hanging up the phone, I asked him one question when he said that she finishes 700 hundred pages book in 5 days, “Have you ever finished 700 hundred pages book in five days?”
He doesn’t have any memory of reading such a big book in his recent past.
I told him that finishing a 700 pages book in five days, and practicing piano alone requires monomaniacal focus and good temperament. Research shows that temperament is mostly inborn but personality is growth.

After our telephone conversation, I remember Abraham Lincoln, the icon of culture. I’ve also watched the live video of Tony Robbins, the icon of personality. I’ve read the biography of Mahatma Gandhi, the icon of conviction, Bill Gates, the icon of sheer focus, and Sir Issac Newton, the icon of reasoning. Everybody represents their own unique genetic code and growth.
Many of us still believe that being quiet is not good. We expect our kids to be sociable, outgoing, talkative, and presentable.
We try to teach our kids that extroversion is a necessity but introversion is a weakness.
We push them to go out, make new friends. Not only that, recently we have started to praise them based on the number of subscriptions, likes, and followers in their social media profiles like facebook, instagram, and youtube.
We aim to make our kid a very good neurosurgeon but at the same time we enroll them for basketball training and piano class expecting equal excellence in all sectors.
There is nothing wrong with this expectation but we should not forget to read a child’s psychology, physiology, and intuition. There is a science that a kid brings his/her uniqueness roughly fifty percent from genes and fifty percent from a growth environment.
Jerome Kagan and Carl Schwartz have done substantial research behind these types of developmental processes in human beings.

My friend enrolled his daughter in various activities but our brain isn’t capable of paying attention to too many activities or tasks at the same time. During multiple activities, our brain has to switch back and forth between different tasks that reduces focus and increases tiredness.

I still believe jobs like research scientist or a writer in any corporation are more of a thinking job, mostly solitary introvert jobs but during job interviews job seekers fake their thinking personality into charismatic salesman personality.
The good news is that corporations like Amazon and Google have started to break this stereotype, but it will take time to come into its full effect in various sectors.
Our society still labels people who work most of the time alone are as erratic, weirdo, eccentric, introvert, screwball, and oddball.
And most importantly “the inadequate”.
These words are still a topic of gossip at the dinner table.
One of my friend’s dad is a comedian by profession, a very outgoing and sociable person. But his private life at home is quite the opposite. He locks himself inside the quiet room to read and write hours and hours.
He always tells us that if you cannot develop introversion on your passion, you cannot become an extroverted leader in your field.
“Life is not the business of only extroversion”, he says.
Worship your conviction, even if it is ridiculed or neglected by the society. It is your private life, your lonely moment, your period of reflection and introversion that determines who you are.
If you can not groom listening power then you cannot become a good speaker.
If you can not write a good book then you are less likely to become a good teacher.
If you can not remain quiet then you can not focus on looking and cannot become a good observer.

First time I learned about Rosa Parks in depth from my daughter, when she was doing a project about her. She was a quiet introvert who initially refused to give up her seat on a bus that brought revolution and she became the mother of the civil rights movement.
Larry Page, the founder of Google, and Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist.com, one of the world’s largest websites, are two other introverts. Both have transformed the face of people’s connection across the globe. Both are the synonyms of human connection.

When we remember Stephen Wozniak, apple co-founder, what comes to our mind? Of course, the iphone in our pocket and the mac laptop on the table, but very few of us are aware of his introversion, love to work being alone. Thomas Edison’s ten thousand failed experiments reminds us why he went to the laboratory on his wedding day. Isn’t that introversion?

When we wake up at 4 am in the morning to think on a blank sheet of paper while the rest of the world is sleeping, it’s not introversion. It’s a creation.
My friend complained that his daughter takes a book inside the bathroom. But, in my view, she does it to absorb author’s few lines in quiet moments. My friend, that is her natural progression, that’s what makes her different from others. She isn’t abnormal, she is going to be creative.

People who spend time alone use many mental images intuitively what they already know and they are also capable of identifying what needs to be changed. Quiet seekers know that we can not grasp the complex information at once so that we grow gradually from kindergarten up to PhD. I remember in my science class doing retrosynthesis of a complex molecule on a white sheet of paper when nobody is around.
Sometimes quiet moments produce sticking ideas.
And these ideas get polished and produce life-changing products.

Getting people’s attention as extroverts should not be the prerequisite for everything.
We as parents demand attention for our kids. We have to teach them how to attract long lasting attention via hard work, dedication, and commitment.
Attention needs a breakage of recurring patterns, but we can still win life by being a quiet person, ignoring the herd.

Both history and recent science have shown us that working alone is not bad at all, it is a distinct habit to nurture and produces astounding results.
Charles Darwin, an icon of new thoughts, and a solitary nature walker, was an introvert.
Anders Ericsson, a research psychologist, says that extraordinary comes when you follow solitude for deliberate practice in your field.
We all are born and grow with a spectrum of introversion to extroversion in life, it’s very difficult to find out where we fall in the spectrum but whatever catching point we embrace we have to amplify it, nurture it, and grow it.
As Susan Cain, author of the acclaimed book Quiet, said “Everyone shines, given the right lighting.”

It is true that few people do the thinking job in a quiet place and few others design it for sales and marketing.
Both are equally important for our society.
We as a society become a lot better if introverts and extroverts work in unison depending on a person’s natural strength and DNA map.
Finally, I didn’t answer my title, but you know now, including these four giants, almost around forty percent of the world population are introverts.

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

What do you want to be: healthy or fit?

My friend was 31 years old, very dynamic, and prolific.
His mother died two days before his PhD graduation in a car accident.
It was devastating, and excruciating for him, no words.
Sometimes, the meaning and purpose behind some tragic events are unknown but cruel.
This is the time we have to take a test on our faith.
My friend couldn’t bear it and went into depression.
He was in constant therapist’s supervision for 2 years. Due to his sedentary lifestyle and negligible health behaviour, he gained a lot of weight, and became overweight by almost 90 pounds.
The good thing is that he came back to normal life gradually, started a job, but was still struggling to overcome his mother’s sudden death.
He was close to me, we used to share a lot of our professional life but not much of personal life.
One day he knew from our common friend that I run at least 2 to 3 miles every single day.
He came to me and asked for advice on how he can lose weight.
Our conversation inspired me to write this piece of content.
The first thing I told him is that everybody has some sort of painful events, major or minor in the past.
Ten percent of our life is what happens to us but the ninety percent is how we respond to the past actions. This shapes us in various forms throughout our existence.
We have to convert the past pain into new strength.
I told him, “In your case, you can turn the pain of your mother’s death to your healthy body, it’s up to you.”
I added, “Whenever you see or remember your mother, visualize her from liberation, imagine your mother is seeing you fit and healthy.”
“Make your health a passion for you, but a pray for the soul of your deceased mother.” I encouraged him.

There are many reasons we suffer in life, in my friend’s case he is already weak due to his mother’s sudden death, in addition to that his health is deteriorating everyday.

If we are healthy then only we can bring peace of mind, happiness, and prosperity.
Focus on your health and fitness that could be the best tool to start a new life.
Many of us don’t do anything to improve our deteriorating life due to past actions. We just think about the past actions, or results and move our brain in the past. This is one of the worst ways to live a life.

If we look only in the rear-view mirror while driving, there is a high chance that we encounter another accident.
We don’t have to drive into the past life using our rear-view mirror as a guiding compass.
Our past actions always work as scientific experiments in our life. Many experiments don’t give the results as per our expectations but still they give us some positive directions and references.
Even the negative results act as references to set up new experiments with the hope of our expected results. We must learn from our past experiences and actions but never ever live in those gone moments. It’s difficult but we have to absorb the pain and release it through our body and mind. We must focus more on those things which uplift and empower us at present or in the future.
In reality, the past is just a conceptualization and it doesn’t exist. The only thing that exists is the present.
If we remain in the past, our stress increases but if we move to the present or positive future by some tool, stress gradually fades away because of the change in emotions.

I make my living by doing science. Many times, I have run scanning experiments to see the real peaks but if I zoom in the baseline I also see tiny peaks called noises. In many circumstances, I have to abandon them and focus on my real peaks. In life, those small noises are past experiences and actions. We have to let them go.

There is another way to look at things in life called overview effect.
When we are in spaceflight and see our city, everything on earth looks like dots. Therefore, we have to see things in perspective. We are very small creatures on this planet. One kind of various forms.
My life philosophy is no one owes us anything in life. If you die today less than 30 people would be affected, and the world continues as it is.

From my personal experience, one tool to let go of the past is to massively focus on fitness and health. If we make health our priority, we become a completely new person never been before.

I advised my friend to be resilient.
I told him, “Don’t complain that you can’t lose weight even though you tried some physical activities”.
If we are unaware about the science behind the exercise, it is very difficult to achieve our health goal. Good health should be the continuous priority rather than doing some random physical activities here and there. We must know how to do it properly.

First of all, health and fitness are not the same.
Majority of people have confusion regarding this.
Healthy person can be fit but a fit person can’t necessarily be healthy. It’s the same as working hard versus working smart.
You can be seen clearly fit, but also unhealthy at the same time. Or you can be healthy without looking fit. My great uncle is still in good health at age 102 but he never looked fit during his lifetime.

Many people do exercise everyday but some of them still feel more fatigued and weak than others, why?
Because they are confused with the rules of health and fitness games.
Fitness is the physical condition to do athletic activity but health is an emotional or mental condition where all of our organ systems are doing their job in normal condition.
Fitness doesn’t necessarily indicate good health, sometimes it requires many skills with the sacrifice of health.
I asked my friend, “What do you want to be”?
He said, “Both”.
I said, “Pick one, and pick health first and work towards fitness”.
For the majority of people I recommend the same unless you are going to participate in athletic competition. That would be a different scenario.
We have to put our health first, and move towards fitness if we want.

One way to achieve this goal is aerobic exercise that burns fat with the help of oxygen.
Another form of exercise is anaerobic exercise that burns glycogen without oxygen.
This also causes our body to store fat.

Many of our activities with lower intensity and lower heart rate are aerobic such as walking, jogging, dancing or running but the activity with higher intensity and higher heart rate such as tennis or basketball are anaerobic.
Anaerobic process burns glycogen first and moves towards blood sugar. This phenomenon can completely disrupt our health and vitality. Our organ systems, especially nervous system demands a lot of blood sugar, but if that is deficient due to excess anaerobic activity, then we suffer health problems.

Our society should be aerobic friendly, but in reality it is anaerobic friendly. We don’t do regular light aerobic activities, and suddenly we feel our overweight body and we are ready to do forced activity or heavy exercise without proper understanding our body’s chemistry.

First, we have to develop aerobic exercise habits and slowly move towards anaerobic activity. Aerobic exercise makes us energetic, healthy and endurant.

Very simple example, if you have never run before, can you run ten miles consistently?
Less likely, if you do so, you will likely have serious leg, muscle, or heart problems.
There is a high chance that after your run you might not walk normally even for several days.
The reason it happens is because you enter into anaerobic exercise zone without much practice of aerobic zone.

One of the biggest benefits of aerobic exercise is that it prevents the clogging of arteries, which is the main cause of heart disease. Aerobic exercise helps to spread oxygen throughout the body organs.

You can go on diet, avoid all fat from your food, starve yourself for a longer period of time, but remember, nothing can beat aerobic exercise to burn fat.
Eat and train is much more functional and productive for our body than doing fitness and exercise on diet.

Christopher Sommer, a former US National Team gymnastics coach said, “Consistency wins over intensity, certain adaptations in body take weeks or months of consistent stimuli, if you rush, the reward is injuries.”

We also receive the burst of growth hormone after heavy exercise. Nowadays, It can also be synthesized in laboratories and given to children who have dwarfism.

Human growth hormone stimulates tissue growth, increases muscle tone, thickens muscles, and stimulates growth of bones and organs.
From birth to around age thirty, this hormone is naturally released into the bloodstream. High levels of this hormone naturally drop in older age. By age sixty to sixty five, men produce little or none of this hormone but women continue to secret into their old age. This is one of the reasons that women live longer than men.
Hyperthermic conditioning which is heat exposure can increase our growth hormone levels and improve our endurance. Sauna or hot baths after exercise are extremely useful in this regard.
In the end, I am going to ask you a simple question.
Who do you think is the most healthy person in the world?
I don’t know your answer, mine is: me ten years from now.
“This is the mindset we have to create”, I told my friend.
Make your health a priority everybody.

Thank you so much for your time.
– Yam Timsina

What’s the best lesson your father ever taught you for happiness?

This is the biggest truth. Each human being, whether the person lives in Kathmandu or New York city, whether the person is PhD or high school drop-out, male or female, young or old, poor or billionaire, has the same desire: Everyone wants to be happy.
I have asked one question to many people around me, though I am not a journalist, just for the sake of my own research and curiosity.
What do you want in life?
The overwhelming majority of people said, they want to be happy.
And I followed them with another question, what makes you happy?
Almost ninety five percent have no clear answer.
They smile, mumble, some say material things, many say hypothetical imagination, few say well…I…. want….to…but no specifics.
Many of us can’t answer because we don’t know exactly what makes us happy.
We have never done research or study on our happiness.
If we study about us, our attitude, our interest, our style, our habit, and our reaction, then only we can tell what makes us happy.
We can not try happiness. There is no such thing trying happiness.
We can not lean towards happiness. If we lean, we fall down.
Because happiness is a commitment.
Majority of people are not happy because they don’t commit on it.

I would like to share a story, one of my mentors told me.
One newly hired salesman asked to his manager, “How can I become happy?”
The manager replied, “If you sell this cell phone today, you not only be happy yourself, you also make me happy.”
He went door to door to sell the cell phone all day, but nobody bought it.
It was 10 pm at night, he was going home.
Suddenly something came in his mind and he knocked one house door.
One gentleman opened the door and said, “What do you want?”
He replied, “Do you want to buy this cell phone, no down payment?”
The man screamed, “No, get lost.” He slammed the door.
He went to another house, knocked the door.
An old lady opened the door, he asked “Could you buy this cell phone, no down payment?”
Old lady said, “No, are you crazy? It’s 11 pm.”
The salesman politely asked, “Do you know anybody who is interested?”
She replied, “My cousin who lives three blocks down the road is interested.”
The salesman went there, knocked the door hesitantly at midnight and said, “Your aunt told me that you want to buy the cell phone, with no down payment.”
The man said, “Come in.”
When you help others to make them happy, you become the happiest person yourself.
Commit to become happy.
Former British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli said very eloquently, “Action may not always bring happiness, but there is no happiness without action.”
Happiness is same thing as love, we don’t need anything to express love. Love speaks itself.
We only feel happiness, I am happy.

To activate happiness, we must, in first place, know ourself.
Happiness can make our life three hundred percent healthier and fulfilled, if we identify it.
The question is.
How do you activate happiness?
Dig deep inside your life and find your two favorite things or two places or two people that make you happy. Ask yourself how much do you really know about these two?
You will find the answer and say, ‘I don’t know much.’
Your relationship with these favorite two is shallow, you don’t see firmness of your purpose and stability with them.
These two just soak up your life, deep down you know they don’t make you happy.
To activate real happiness, we must learn and commit more about us than these two favorites, that we think make us happy.
Happiness is not something that you saw last week in Boston, so you want to have it now.
It is also not any profession or place or thing that your best friend told you about so that you want to pursue.
Don’t waste time and energy on things to become happy without knowing who you are.
Michael Jordan was born to be a happier basketball player but Aristotle, as a happier philosopher and scientist.
Happiness is not same for all. It is internal and designed by our individual mind-configuration.
Happiness is individual.
I have seen the happiest people in the world. When I was growing up in a village, I had one friend who used to fish everyday, used to collect crabs all day. Now he has one hundred fisheries.
I have seen the most unhappy people who has millions of dollars in the bank account, but he uses drug every single day to seek happiness.

Dig deeper inside you; learn, research and commit about yourself first, then you will be able to create your own happiness.
Superficiality is not happiness; happiness is your depth.
Never ever try to buy happiness, it’s never be on sale. The only thing we can buy is pleasure, which is completely different from happiness.
I can go movie and buy two hours happiness, nope, two hours pleasure.
Many people go to beach to become happy, but when they reach there, they feel bored after certain time, and they seek another thing to be happy. They come home with tiredness.
If you are not happy at home before to go beach, you will not be happy at the beach.

Throughout my life, I saw my father always happy when he was around cattle, raise them, feed them, and milk them. I always saw him happy because I saw true authentic expression inside him doing that. No matter the profession, if we don’t produce vigor, we remain unhappy. Vigor is the process of doing the task, not the end-result.
If you have vigor on anything you do, you fill the dead space between activities in your life, which creates the ultimate happiness.
Our life is made up of dead spaces between our daily activities.
My father taught me, “Don’t do anything to impress others, fill the dead spaces in your life. This is a key of happiness.”
But I was not happy doing cattle activities as my dad. I still don’t know three hundred percent what makes me happy. I have only a sense of it.
But everyday I am working on it, and I’m sure one day I will find it out.

I can provide you a hint, you can activate happiness in your life by four things: health, family, relationship, and experiences.
Connect these four dots in your own way, while doing that you will find a process. Devote on that process, you will be happy forever.
Dig deep inside you and carry your body and mind with these four dots: health, family, relationship and experience.
I am three hundred percent sure; you will create your own happiness.
Remember, our time on earth is limited, so spend with your choice because happiness is only your choice to commit for an interest, and nothing more.
Because, you must have an interest in life just to keep living happily.
Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina