Why am I not a genius?

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” -Lao-tzu

Do you know Aesop from Aesop’s Fables?
I guess, you probably remember a lot from your childhood.
He has been with us alive for a very long time.
Really a very long time from the past, ancient time, at least, think of more than 2400 years ago.
I don’t know how much you know about Aesop, he was a slave, who lived in ancient Greece from 620-564 B.C.
He was eventually freed from slavery because of his amazing story telling abilities.
His more than 600 fables are equally amazing and magnificent today.
His stories are equally inspiring and creative for us today.
My question to you, was he a genius?
Probably you say – yes.
He became a genius in story telling no matter what the circumstance was, as being a slave.
Even though he was slave, he was constantly imagining stories.
He used to imagine stories very consciously all the time.
Remember, words here, imagination and consciousness.

Humans learnt to lie an hour after they learned to talk, this is another example of how genius our mind is.
Think of any life events, why does each event produce either positive or negative effects at the same time?
For example, for me loud music is irritating, it excites my temper and pressure but for my daughter it is delightful and vibrant.
I don’t know.
I remember one of my neighbors, divorce became traumatic for him because it was unwanted for him and he was trying to avoid it by all means.
But last week my cousin’s friend got divorce and it was a desired and happy moment for her.
This is another example of how our mind takes the same event as a happy or stressful moment for each of us differently.
Because our mind is a genius in itself.
The only thing we have to do is how to react to the moments accepted by our brain.
The difference between ordinary and genius minds is that the latter learns how to react with each life event very early in its development by its intuitive and imaginative practices.
Think of the imaginative process of Aesop.

Our mind is very complex and the way it works is not only amazing, it’s very instructive too.
When we have a small amount of information to work with and if we work with great intensity, we can break it down into microscopic details.
Our mind has the capacity to do so.
Once we do gradual incremental training in any task, our unconscious understanding of the information regarding the task becomes sufficiently advanced.
We generally learn how to trust our physical and intuitive intelligence to handle the technical component of the task.
At any moment, our conscious mind can zoom in on very tiny amounts of data.
This awareness of how our brain works is applied by many great human minds in history.

The world of communication and the world of processing communication is very different but still our mind does it very smartly.

Genius is nothing but the love of doing something from inside without any immediate incentive or gain. Obviously, there could be tangible as well as intangible incentives in the long run.

Like Aesop, what do you think about Thomas Edison?
Was he a genius?
Probably you say- yes.
Thomas Edison tested more than 1600 substances before he found tungsten as the most effective element to be used for his iconic discovery of the incandescent light bulb.

What do you think about Mahatma Gandhi?
Was he a genius?
You might say, of course.
He single-handedly overcame the British Empire, the great force in the world then.
Gandhi was quite aware about the intrinsic dignity of a human, the right to freedom, sovereignty, and self determination.
Gandhi always believed that human rights aren’t granted by any earthly power, they are ingrained in the nature of humans because they are inherent in their creation.
But still, it took him a very long time to instill his thoughts to the general public.

What do you think about Bill Gates?
Is he a genius?
You would definitely say, yes.
Remember, he only ate and did coding all night without sleep in the early days of Microsoft.

What do you think about Elbert Einstein?
Was he a genius?
Of course, all of us think so.
Remember, Einstein’s name is associated with so many peer-reviewed publications which appeared to be wrong.

Let’s take the current iconic figure Elon Musk.
Is he a genius?
You would probably say yes.
By the way, he has slept many nights on the floor of the assembly lines of a car manufacturing company.

Everybody has only one destination, which is to go from ‘here’ to ‘there’.
Every step has to have a reason to originate from.
Everybody has dreams, pains, and sufferings to promote evolution, that’s what Thomas Edison and Mahatma Gandhi did consistently in their lifetime.
Evolution always forces us in a new path, new direction, and a new destination although the whole process of transference is very lengthy and tedious.
How many times did Thomas Edison and Mahatma Gandhi hit bottom before they learned a lesson?
Maybe hundreds or maybe thousands or even more.

Remember, genius is a sheer quantity of human suffering, it’s very difficult to comprehend, but it moves slowly within our mind, very slowly, by inches, by feet or maybe by meters.

I’m a scientist, I know the pain of testing a few substances if something is not working.
The patience for testing 1600 substances by Thomas Edison in the lab is not ordinary, it’s genius.
Basically, the genius mind enjoys doing it, and is really interested in knowing more about something which anybody does intrinsically everyday.
This happens because they make their choices from their values, those values are their intrinsic motivators.
It’s one thing to conceive of the light bulb or give people the right of freedom but it’s something else to make it happen.
Genius is motivation and motivation is the energy to make a thing happen.
Motivation in humans is derived from meaning and purpose as in Edison and Gandhi.
People whom we say are creative merely design, discover, write, paint, or sculpt.
But, they make it first within their own mind because they have already seen those images internally.
Just think about Aesop’s storytelling ability.

Remember, we don’t dance on the floor from logic, thinking or any intellect, we dance because we feel like doing dance.
Feeling is the first part of a genius.

Scientifically, genius means the source of creative leaps of awareness to all our consciousness.
It is the practice of becoming more aware of our consciousness each moment, each hour, each day, each week, each month, and each year with progression.
Do you feel love without fear?
Do you feel calm without resentment?
Probably less likely.
But why?
Have you ever tried to answer?
These answers come from genius minds, and only by practice by making ourselves in full awareness.
Remember, love has a higher frequency of consciousness and fear has a lower frequency of consciousness.
Very few selected people experience only love in their lives because they are aware that love could be masked by fear, which is noise.
Of course, these are genius minds.
For ordinary people the frequency of fear is so high that it overlaps the frequency of love, this is basically the low level of consciousness within us.

When we remain not conscious at all times, we might feel good or feel correct but in a completely negative or invalid mood.
Our consciousness is exactly the same as a musical note that we play correctly but at the wrong place in a particular song.

Einstein, Heisenberg, Bell, Bohr, Newton and many other great inventors were not actually born geniuses.
They knew and demonstrated that everything in the universe is subtly dependent upon every other thing around.
This is basically the indication of the full awareness of full consciousness.
Just think about the story of the falling apple, earth, gravity from Newton; he was not the first to see an apple falling from a tree.
This is the result of complete awareness of his consciousness.
They just reacted to the relationship of one thing over others in a different way than ordinary people.

Remember, our mind is a computer terminal connected to a giant database.
This database is our consciousness and our own cognizance is just a mere individual expression.
In reality, this database is the source of genius for which everyone has access.
The only question is how we utilize and understand the database for our purposes.

What counts for most people to be genius is not how much they know about databases, but rather how realistically they define what they don’t know about databases.
This ‘what they don’t know’ is awareness.

The bottom line: we don’t have to be genius in order to achieve satisfactory results in our lives. Genius is, we must recognize our own limitations and follow a course in life which is certain to work reasonably well.
Always keep our thoughts and practices simple like Thomas Edison and Mahatma Gandhi.
Don’t dream about anything without putting our feet first on the ground.
If anyone promises you to teach to be a genius, respond to your inner guard with a very quick no.
Keep in mind, it’s not going to happen anytime soon.
First, keep your feet on the ground, learn to walk, start running, keep running long distances, practice drinking, eating, and breathing while running.
Make sure you are fully aware of your consciousness of why you do the task, what you do, and how you do it, and just follow the process of genius.

By the way, I’m not a genius because I have not consistently followed what I just said in the previous lines.

I wish you all the best and goodluck for your journey to genius.

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

Laxxmi, you lost your mom but you are making thousands of moms stronger. Kudos to you!!!

“If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.” – Kurt Cobain

I was traveling in a public bus.
She came and sat across from me.
She became comfortable in her seat, I smiled at her and she also responded with a soft smile with a waving hand.
Her return smile was a clear indication for me that our 8 hours journey in a bus is going to be very interesting.
We talked about ourselves, specifically our job and profession.
Occasionally our knees were touching each other when the bus was making different motions.
She said that she was a marketing officer in a sanitary pad business.
I told her about my scientific work in a multinational research company. I also mentioned our huge marketing department though I had very little knowledge about marketing.
I added, “I’ve only a vague assumption of how marketing works in our organization.”

“ I run experiments, I analyze and interpret data, I also document, publish, and preserve all of these,” I further explained.
I was curious, so I asked, “what exactly do you do as a marketing officer?”

She replied, “My work is very simple, how to build trust in public. Not only in the sanitary pad business but in any business, all marketing people try to build trust in the public. That’s what we all do.”
“In your work as a scientist, probably you largely depend on yourself, your knowledge and skill, but in my work, I’m mostly dependent on others, mostly in public,” she commented.
“Exactly, you are right, the majority of my work is solitary and bench work” I nodded.
“As a marketing personal, I don’t care that much about new products, new technology or innovations, what I care more is what products and services are going to be obsolete soon”, she clearly pointed out.

In response to my smile in the beginning, I’d noticed her smile was very attractive with her upper half clean and shiny teeth.
At that point I’d predicted that she might be outgoing and our journey could be a different experience.
Her style of engagement in our conversation was showing that she must be a pro by considering her overall enthusiasm and curiosities.

Smile is an amazing human expression.
It connects a lot of different things in our body and mind.
It generates oxytocin in our brain and that provokes a thought.
One simple thought produces ripple effects and generates many more thoughts.
And one good thought gradually changes into a trust.
When she said her main responsibility is to create trust in public, I was also trusting her as a genuine professional woman.
Actually she was absolutely not talking about her job, she was talking completely about her profession.
Remember, job and profession are not the same things.
Any job can be only an absolute transactional relationship because we work for the money or some tangible benefits or both.
When we become professional, we take pride in our work and accomplishments, we feel good about the people we work with, and the organization.
Most importantly, once our job becomes a profession, we work 24 hours in our mind.
The interesting thing about being professional is we look forward to a long time doing what we’re doing. We love to do things, we love to talk about what we do. Looking back, we say I’ve accomplished many things in my life, but I still have a long way to go, more things to accomplish.
She was purely professional, the way she was talking to me, the way she was bringing ideas, and the ways she was interested to know more about my area.

I saw a thirst in her tone, I saw a drive in her look, I saw calmness in her emotions, and I saw unwavering trust in her eyes.
It’s very true that trust creates harmony in human society and if we like to work on any such matter based on trust then the job no longer remains a job, it becomes a life-long profession very quickly.
If we don’t have trust then probably human society collapses and there would be no transaction in any form whatsoever.
There are always people working day in and day out to build trust in any circumstances or scenarios.

Do you buy shampoo from a company you have never heard of before?
I guess no.
Do you lend money to an unknown person?
Of course not.
Do you travel to rural Afghanistan?
Obviously no.
Who do you trust your running coach? A Kenyan or an American guy.
Of course, a Kenyan guy because you have many more reasons to trust a Kenyan guy as a running coach.
The only reason we don’t do aforementioned things is because we don’t trust the unknown.
We don’t trust a new company because shampoo directly touches our body when we use it. It contains chemicals, it’s sensitive so we don’t want to take risks.
We never lend money to anybody whom we don’t trust because we don’t know whether he or she will return it.
Money isn’t just a thing to buy, it’s also an emotional entity. It can make or break a relationship in a second. We should be very careful.
We know Afghanistan is mouldering with terrorism right now, so we don’t trust people and government over there.
These above mentioned scenarios can only be trusted by continuous work on them, as she said, work and build trust.

At one point, she said that marketing is a collective knowledge, it always moves from bottom up based on public trust.

Trust was ingrained in her blood as if she was born with it.
Due to this trust, she said, sometimes she works 10 to 12 hours in the street.
She said she feels tired so she goes on deep undisturbed 8 hours sleep.
She says if you work longer than regular hours, then you also need more rest, and sleep is the only rest, if you don’t sleep you suffer from mental fog and fatigue.
She warns that many people are not aware about this, they do hard work only by squeezing hours of required rest.
“We can live 14 maximum days without eating but we can’t live more than 12 maximum days without sleeping, now you can see the importance,” she pointed out.
She says that we only realize this later in life and we whisper I wish I could have done that.

When she was 2 years old, she couldn’t walk, her family was really worried.
As her mom said to her later, everybody around her, her relatives, her neighbors told her mom, she couldn’t walk all of her life.
The only person in her family, her elder brother who was 10 years old at the time, didn’t believe that she couldn’t walk.
Her brother played with her all day, pushed her to walk by holding her hand all day.
As her mom said to her, when she reached 3, making everybody surprised around her, she walked.
She remembered as her mom said, the only person that didn’t surprise at the time was her brother because he had trust over him that she would certainly walk one day.
In today’s world, people might say she had cerebral palsy, no hope.
Her brother became the top physiotherapist for her at that time.
Only because her brother had immense trust and worked for it.

She made a point that trust is essential everywhere, we had fewer airplanes in the past but we have more now because people trusted different tastes of flying. Marketing itself drives various tastes in public and that follows innovation.
She said we have to be very careful to know about the public and why they like something over others.
“Marketing is just a very small fragment of human psychology,” she added.
Once she said when we become bigger as a company or organization we stop innovation, we stop studying people so our products and services become mundane and obsolete very quickly.
As a student of marketing, she said, my eyes always remain curious about what people are liking and why they’re not liking.

Once our conversation became very friendly and comfortable, she became very emotional at one point and shared her journey.
She said that she wasn’t only a marketing officer, she was also a co-founder of her sanitary pad company.
“When I was 17 years old, I was walking, running, and selling the cheapest sanitary pads in rural villages all day. In those villages, most of the women never used sanitary pads. A lot of teenage girls had no idea what the sanitary pad was. They all were using old rags and the most damped and dusty, torn-out cloth pieces.
Most girls came from rural families and used to survive on less than $2 a day.
Many of them belong to lower castes called “untochables,” who had suffered years of discrimination.”
I still remember, one day one passer-by woman asked me,“Where are you from?”
She’s polite.
She asked me how I’m hoping to sell today.
With my confidence, I told her my aim is not to go home without selling at least one pad.
To sell at least one pad.
She was an adult woman, and looked at me as she was carrying her grandson by her waist.
“I’m sure you can sell at least two pads,” she said.
“There is a fine line between humbling and humiliating and I didn’t know whether I crossed that barrier or not.
From that day onward, my journey is continuously going unwaveringly.
By the way, that day I sold four pads,” she said.
She sighed and said I wish I could make a culture of sanitary pads in rural and uneducated poor girls’ society, as a running culture in rural Kenya, a football culture in rural Brazil, and a cricket culture in rural India.

In our conversation, she gave me very eye-opening data about our native country Nepal.

A 2016 report on menstrual health and hygiene management in Nepal found that a staggering 83 percent of menstruating girls still use cloth while only 15 percent use sanitary pads.

She also quoted the National Family Health Survey data from 2015-2016 from India, neighboring country of Nepal, that estimates only roughly 36 percent women (in all menstruating women) use sanitary napkins, locally or commercially produced.

She was quoting another data that 88% of women and girls in India are using homemade alternatives, such as old cloth, rags, or hay.

She was quite aware of the consequences of poor menstrual hygiene.
Of course, poor menstrual hygiene is one of the major causes of contracting cervical cancer, reproductive tract infections, hepatitis B infection, various types of yeast infections and urinary tract infection, to name a few.

Emotionally, in the middle of our conversation, she said to me that her mom died from cervical cancer when she was 13 years old.
“My mom died without seeing the sanitary pad,” she softly expressed.
She said, “I don’t want to tell and humiliate myself by saying what I used in my first menstrual period, I even don’t want to remember this.”

I could imagine what this work means for her.
She had no idea when this job turned into a profession and later a drive in her life.
When she was saying her first menstrual period she was looking through the window with moist eyes.
After going through all of her personal experiences, I understood her devotion, her drive, and her commitment in her work.
She wasn’t only doing her work, she was also trying to leave a legacy for rural girls and women.
How come a pure job turns into a profession, and subsequently becomes such a drive in our everyday lives.

“We have something unusual in our DNA which prohibits us from adopting a good drive that we trust.
I’ve learned a lesson long back from my personal experience, keep observing the world inside and outside my work. If I see someone is doing something good for the society, I take inspiration and I try to incorporate it in my life,” she said.

We exchanged our name and email address and we became, I guess, pretty close friends.

Laxxmi, my friend, says that she doesn’t care about being an odd person, what she really cares about is having a drive for a mission.
I fully accept that.
“What the drive gives us is the ability to do what we want to do in the way we want to do it, and that’s an amazing feeling,” she said.

Laxxmi, my friend, who is one of the most admirable people I’ve ever traveled with for almost 9 hours in a public bus, has a deep sense of mission that’s connected to the loss of her mother.
She once told me that God has taken my mom from me and given energy to make thousands of moms stronger.

One thing I learned from Laxxmi is that this drive for each of us in our lives is very personal.
Now I know why the drive for Mother Teresa was so different from Michael Jackson personally.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina

My friend, why do you always complain?

Never tell your problems to anyone, 20% don’t care and the other 80% are glad you have them. -Lou Holtz

After a long time, I met one of my friends in my old place, Philadelphia.
He was my dear friend and, of course, he still is.
He began to talk to me about how badly his career is going, he said that nobody gave him a tenured position after teaching 7 years in a liberal art college, and how difficult it was to publish papers in peer reviewed journals where nobody cared about his fundamental research.
He further said that everything was so competitive, there was no funding for fundamental basic research from any organizations.
He gave me a chance to respond after saying this: public as well as private funding moved to the cosmetic areas of science and technology where immediate returns became the prime importance.

He became emotional and shared all of it with me because I was in his heart as one of his close friends, so I told him, why do you always complain?
And, in addition, when I meet you, you always start by complaining every time.
What is the reason for your complaint?
Do you actually feel relieved after complaining of things that you didn’t get?
This is my request to you, my friend, please, learn how to stop complaining if you can.
Complaining doesn’t solve your problem, actually it doesn’t solve anybody’s problems, it just exacerbates our problems.

Complaining is a habit, in many cases it’s a way to express our ego which is inside us.
Truth to be told, people don’t have time at all to listen to our complaints.
They have their own shits to figure out and move in their lives.
They always have their own things to muddle.
We might think they are listening to our complaint, and they will save us, but they actually are not listening to us.
We may feel that they might give something to us after they listen to our complaints, but in reality, people are listening to our problem just for a moment in front of us. Once we are gone, they will forget about what we just said.
They come back to their own problems, they think about their own situations, and they have their own things to figure out rather than ours.
This is the world we are living in.
There is nothing wrong here, but we have to understand how the human mind works.
People were like this before we came to this world, people are the same now, and will be the same in the future too.
Leaving very few people, actually very few from a close family circle that you can count on in your fingers, people have no time for others.
People are centered around themselves, it’s not their fault, this is how we all operate to survive.
People spend time by themselves, and for themselves, this is the hard reality.

I met you after five years but in our first conversation you started complaining about your job and working situations without even asking me how I was doing.

Of course, it’s difficult to get tenured, it’s difficult to publish in peer-reviewed journals.
If it wasn’t difficult, everyone would be publishing it, by this time it wouldn’t be special and creative to become a tenured professor.

To become tenured you have to either publish or perish, this is more than a slogan now in academia. Filter one out of ten, shine one and garbage nine to survive.

I suggest you ask people who got tenure before you. This is the world of human beings, the world of human experiences, and most importantly, the world of human connection.
Always remember, human connection.
Don’t take it lightly, I’m not saying just two words, it’s a whole lot of different games.

My friend, in the real world, your tenureship is decided by two or three people in your organization. It’s not about what you know and how much you know, it’s always about who you know.
Above talent there is connection and empathy.
Talent is nothing, everybody is talented in this world in some way, this is in our genes but connection means everything for any situation.
Michael Jordan isn’t talented in computer science, and , similarly, think of Bill Gates on the basketball court.
Talent is an outcome of an over extended period of practice, dedication, and hard work in one specific area.

Everybody knows Bill Clinton, the most popular and successful president of US history, but very few are aware of his habit of calling one to two ordinary common people whom he met somewhere in a coffee shop or in concert before going to sleep through years and years.
This is the power of person to person connection.

Once I attended a seminar by the late Nobel laureate professor Robert Grubbs, I remembered him saying that when he was assistant professor in Michigan State University, he was having problems with tenureship.
He said that many of his colleagues at the time suggested to him that he could change his career track.
After hearing their suggestion he said that he changed himself more to know the rules of the game than anything else.
We have to know rules formally and informally pretty well before breaking them effectively.

I also have a unique experience.
Many years ago, I applied for a sales assistant job in one enterprise, but the manager rejected my application.
I asked him if there was any way I could improve my experience to get the job.
He replied that I didn’t have enough sales experience, especially in the electrical appliance business.
I desperately needed a job so I asked one singer whom I knew through one of my extended family members, a kind of budding celebrity at that time, to tell the enterprise manager for the job.
I reapplied for the job.
The enterprise manager called me the next day.
I asked the manager what special quality I have for the job.
The manager replied that for the electrical appliance business, fresh candidates do better jobs than experienced ones because we give them our own special training.
The enterprise manager had no clue that I was the same person applying for the job before.
I wasn’t angry with the enterprise manager at all, I was just learning how to grow wings by myself.

My friend, there is nothing wrong here in the process, any process never becomes transparent to everyone as long as humans are involved in the process.
The world was not transparent before, there are many dark stories, the world is not transparent now, and will remain the same like this for many many years to come.

If you are not tenured after 7 years of teaching, then you need to have uncommon solutions, and for that you have to look in uncommon territories. Keep in mind that you already pass the common territories.
We have to learn to be proactively skeptical in anything but, in your situation, you are showing more of a defensively skeptical attitude.
When we become proactively skeptical, we become more aware of things and surroundings, and consequently, we see more choices.
Please, accept this as my pure private analysis.
I’m no guru by any way.
We always like to do what others are doing but this works only if we are dealing in normal territories.
We have to learn to see the things that others are not seeing, especially when we are in uncharted territories like yours.

My friend, you need your position as a tenured person, keep in mind that only you need, nobody else needs because nobody sees what you see in your life.
I don’t know whether you need or you want this job as a tenured position.
Everyone has their own needs.
Everybody has their own wants.
But there is always a small overlap between this need and want, that is actually called interest.
In the US, when a kid turns 16, they need an iPhone and a car.
That’s not their need actually at the moment, that is their want.
But if we go deeper, this want is a lot bigger in different ways, this want is their symbol to begin their independent adult life.
This is an emotional change for them, but when their life goes on, they find a spot where this want converts into their need.

Accept this, in the beginning, every successful person imitates past successful people in the same field by making a very good human connection before they can innovate themselves.

My friend, teaching is not easy, research is even more difficult, and getting tenureship is more like holding a hot rod in a bare hand.
Here is the hard truth, 99.55% of PhDs will not become professors.
According to a study by the Royal Society of Chemistry, only 0.45% of all PhDs will ever become professors because there are almost no tenured track positions.
I know from my personal experience, up to now in my life, I have done the longest time job is only teaching.
Don’t be discouraged, teaching is not easy in itself, and in addition, research is becoming more and more business in academia.
But if you need a tenured position then you have to make both teaching and research a lot interesting for you.
A lot.
If your job is interesting for you, you will never complain about it to your best friend.

The general rule of life is: whatever we practice we will improve at it, only if the game is interesting for us.

Fifteen years of work experience comes only after spending fifteen years of time.
But our mind is so powerful, if our game is interesting to us, we can research, we can visualize, and we can calibrate the game.
Fifteen years experience can be cut in ten or five years too.
This could be possible only if we can train our mind how to be creative through human tools, human experiences, and human connection.

Remember, human connection is one of the best tools.

People will tell you many different things but the greatest truth behind human connection is: things always move only through person to person.

If the game is interesting to us, we will become experts at handling any tool including person to person.

I wish you all the best.

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

Who are you: worker or networker?

Get lost first and then find your destination, you get a completely different perspective of life; if not get lost now, then when? -Anonymous

There is a saying: doers learn to see but others learn to search.
My grandfather used to tell me, always associate with the people who actually have done the real work and gathered the real work experience rather than with those who actually teach but have never done the real work.
I wish I would have applied my grandfather’s words long back.
We cannot start a business just by listening to a lecture from a person who has spent years teaching business education in academia but has never run a business in real life.
Thinking about business is one thing but go and start a business is a completely different thing.
We never become good swimmers only by reading books on how to swim well, we become good swimmers by jumping in water and practicing swimming.
The difference between doing the real work and teaching the same means we excite the different parts of our brain.
This is really fascinating to me from my own personal experience because I’ve spent many years teaching the students but actually rarely did the same myself.
I have noticed that doers have three dimensional thinking but teachers and observers, most of the time, have two dimensional thinking.
I have also experienced that many times doers do more actual work and utilize their time very judiciously but teachers and observers do more network.
Work is way more important and powerful than networking for those who are especially involved in any kind of creation.
In reality, any type of creative work eventually itself makes a network, no need for extra time for networking, creation flows in different directions with invisible medium.
Work and networking have common misunderstandings among us because we always think that we have to network to show our work.
The truth is: any creative work always follows the network wherever we go.
Real creation speaks in itself, it attracts networks because it actually becomes the real reason for networking.

Remember, if networking doesn’t work, then only work will work.

One of the most important habits doers have is they always quantify anything in their lives.
This is so powerful to improve and upgrade anything in their lives.
If we know exactly how many glasses of water we drink everyday, then it has a huge effect on tomorrow’s drinking habit and overall health.
This is just one example.
If we know exactly how many times we become upset in a day and on what moments then it has a huge influence on tomorrow’s mental mood and overall lifestyle.
If we don’t quantify things in life then we reach nowhere, and we have no way of knowing how things are moving in our lives.
We have no measurement of ourselves.

Do something and make a habit to quantify. Quantification is our required qualification for self-improvement.

As far as we can experience and understand, there are three types of minds: thinking, doing, and being.
Thinking mind or our thought only doesn’t guarantee that we do the task. We certainly can teach and transfer thoughts to others by utilizing it.
Doing mind is different, it captures some of the features of thinking including positive thinking and thinking belief as well as some part of being mind.
Being needs actual work done in reality, only actual work done.
This is one of the reasons that doers have an edge over observers and teachers because the former are one step ahead in the mental process of the task than the later.
If we are on the stage of doing, we can see both sides, thinking and being, because we are on the edge.
Remember, if we are on the edge, we can see clearly what is on the outside but if we are in another place then we may not see things outside.
Edge is actually the rearview mirror of life, by looking at this we can see how we can go where we want to go.
If you are a doer, then you certainly can quantify the distance between how you can go to where you want to go.
In the process of doing actual work, our brain produces different chemicals than just thinking or teaching. When we associate more with the doer, our brain also anticipates the doer’s mindset.

Teacher performs the job by teaching the material to others but the doer does the same for herself or himself.
What doers do is they show up and do the work. They prepare for themselves, they read for themselves. They enjoy the process without expecting anything in return.
If we enjoy the process, we become a different individual every single day.

Author Austin Kleon has written a must read book “Show Your Work” and he shares about the importance of process rather than product, and the benefit of doing something small everyday.
This book is a must read book for those who are in the business of creativity.
Doer actually has the habit of looking at the minor details of the task they care about.
The key point for them is how to develop foresight and patience.
They develop these characters unknowingly with practice.

Doers also have a secret weapon they never tell to anybody but they just increase their knowledge themselves just by doing a little bit every time.
They are always honest with themselves, but don’t tell all of their secrets to anybody.
It’s essential to keep some of our secrets to ourselves as catalysts. Our little treasures, nobody knows outside.
Thoughts and big ideas are our own treasures to preserve to inspire us. Sometimes it’s better not to say anything about them, but to tell ourselves, and just do the work.
Doers are wise enough to recognize these precious moments.

It is true that doers may not get the desired goal all the time but every day they satisfy their inner thirst, they improve their inner self.
They see and experience their inner designer character daily.
Sharpening the inner designer character is contagious.
Creation itself is contagious.
Creativity is an indefinite resource, the more we look for, the more we find. This is the motto for any doer who devotes into any sort of creation.
Doers don’t anticipate any great creation but they do anticipate a different creation in their own imagination.
This is the reason Michelangelo viewed himself as a sculptor and created the Sistine Chapel Ceiling.
This is the reason that Charles Darwin took 20 years to finally publish his landmark work, the Origin Of Species.
This is the reason that Thomas Alva Edison, one of the most prolific inventors, held a total of 1,093 U.S. patents in his lifetime.
For some people, innovation is also contagious.
Take an example of Richard Branson, a magazine producer, who originated the idea of renting boeing and later started the airlines industry along with a series of other successful companies.

There is always one person that appears in my mind when I see the word doer: Winston Churchill.
He was a best selling author, painter, a gifted journalist at age 20, he became a member of parliament in the UK, subsequently, he became prime minister two times, and served his people.
As a prime minister during most of World War II, Winston Churchill rallied the British people and led the country from the brink of defeat to victory.
What a doer!
He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in1953.
A doer of rare versatility.

Do doers have a way of coming up with big ideas of creation and innovation in their mind?
This is a complicated question to answer but both creation and innovation lie in doer’s bucket list.
One of the ingredients of doers regarding creation and innovation is they have a good attitude upon invention and innovation which acts as a competence over their skill.

Another most fascinating thing about doers is they know everything is temporary in their lives, therefore, they don’t waste time regretting and debating.
They always know it and behave in the same way.
They know, we all are temporary, our life is temporary, our house is temporary.
Our money, our relationship, our cat, and our cows all are temporary.
We have an expiry date on us.
If we realize this every single day, we certainly become doer, we try to leave a legacy, and we live a great life.

Doers know that feeling good comes only after doing something good.
Feeling good also comes after reading or listening or watching something good, but feeling good after doing something good creates ripple effects in our lives permanently. Nothing comes close to this astounding experience.

Remember, it doesn’t matter what we say and teach everyday consistently, what matters is what we do everyday consistently.
As Maria Popova, founder and editor of Brain Pickings, said; nothing beats the consistency driven by the deep love of work.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina

How did I learn to say ‘no’ recently?

Since the last couple of years, I have divided my life into three parts: the first is the time that I like to spend for me, just for me, only for me what I like to do, I don’t want to compromise on it.
Others might say I’m selfish because I don’t want to give this time to anybody else.
But nothing has touched me more than what my mind, heart, and body whispers me to do.
Selfish is a really complicated and difficult word to use.
This word leaves a negative precursor in our mind and thinking.
My mind and body always whispers simultaneously to me not to use the word ‘selfish’ to anybody else because you don’t know the other person completely.
Many of us use it too often, too quickly, and too lightly, but I don’t want to use it in such a way.
Let others use it in whatever form they want. This is their life, their thinking, and their choice.
But I don’t want to use the word ‘selfish’ for others, at least after using my two cents’ second thought.
If we avoid using the word ‘selfish’, I am sure we improve our non-judgemental curiosity and compassion a lot better.
This is a fast technological world, we all want to be super successful and super perfectionists so that we become superhuman superquick.
But, in reality, all we need in life is a lot less ‘super’ but a lot more ‘human’, this is more likely to happen when we don’t compromise time for our ‘me’ moments.
‘Me’ moment is a microscopic view of our life, it is not a selfish moment.
My picture of ‘me’ moment may look unusual for others but it is very common for me.
And I hope this should be the same for you too.
Here is a simple synopsis of my ‘me’ moment as an illustration.

I want to read Mark Twain’s ‘The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn’ even though I am super busy.
I want to write about my first dad experience when my first child was born because something unforgettable happened.
I want to meet with my childhood friend in Seoul, South Korea because I’d spent my past 20 plus years with him together.
My tomorrow’s 5k running time is conflicted with one of my friends’ birthday party, but I want to run.
I want to listen to that specific song by Lata Mangeshwor several times when I am on my patio remembering my deceased grandma.
I want to travel this weekend, Naperville, Illinois to attend the writer’s club conference where I would have the opportunity to meet with Paulo Coelho, one of my all time favourite authors.
I want to meditate for 30 minutes at noon Sunday afternoon outside to elevate my focus level.

I learned that the best of me comes only if I push myself over the edge.
And this is possible only if I know myself better.
And this is possible only if I spend quality time on myself for my ‘me’ moments.

Remember, air hostesses always say put your mask first before helping others.
I hope you got the point.

The second part is for my family where I want to spend my time with my kids and wife.
Nothing is more important than our family. Most of the time, our life revolves around our kids, spouse, parents, and siblings.
I like to stay at home, play with kids, watch movies with them, travel with them, participate in activities that they want to be involved in and make them happy.
I know if I don’t do this now then there would be a list of more regrets on deathbed than my life accomplishments.

The third part is to dedicate time to my professional work.
This is the time for bread and butter.
Remember, this part is no less important than the above two parts by any means.
This is my work for living and that supports me financially and upgrades me every single day by learning something new.
By profession I’m a scientist so I need to be updated on new discoveries, findings, and innovations every single day.
To accomplish my professional goal, I need to work efficiently and smartly, otherwise, the aforementioned two areas of my life would be affected.

The most difficult part in life is to make balance in these three areas.
It doesn’t happen often, it needs a little bit of practice.
There are many reasons why it’s difficult to balance but I’m going to mention one which affected my life the most.
In our life, each of these three areas needs to grow without affecting the other.
But trust me, nobody is perfect and I’m not the exception.
There are a lot of people who are struggling for this balance.
I’m trying to make this balance but my life doesn’t know this balance automatically unless I teach and practice my life how to balance them.

This balance for me became possible only when I knew how to say ‘no’ very politely and gently to the activities which have no meaning in my life.
But the majority of us are very weak to say ‘no’ to, because we don’t want to offend anybody.
This is our human nature.
We have been taught since childhood not to say ‘no’ to others.
We look rude and undisciplined in society’s eyes.
If we don’t offend anybody by saying ‘no’ then we offend ourselves, so this is our conscious choice to whom to offend.
Nowadays if somebody invites me or proposes to me to go somewhere or to do something, and if I don’t want to go or don’t like then I simply say ‘no’, thank you for the invitation’.
I don’t give them any answer for why?
This is difficult but we must practice.
I don’t say and will never say, “oh I’m busy, I don’t have time.”
Remember, there are always 24 hours in a day, same for all, for me, for Elon Musk, for Joe Biden, for Oprah Winfrey, and for my 6th grader daughter.
It’s not true that I don’t have time, I have time but maybe not for that specific task.
I simply said, “little longer ‘noooooo’ with a nice smile, thank youuuu, though.”
This part is really hard if we don’t practice, I’m still working on it.

The most recent type of ‘no’ that I have learnt is no to political news. In past years the amount of time that I spent on political news is insanely high when I look back on my life.
To be honest, I never learnt anything from political news.

I absorbed everything just as entertainment, it didn’t help a single ounce to improve the quality of any area of my life.
Finally, I realized this is a total waste of time.

I found that spending so much time on political news is not helpful at all.
Most of the political news is intentionally motivated to hook, influence, and addict us, and finally make us morally and intellectually bankrupt.
Does it really matter to my life which party leader said what in where?
I don’t think so unless I’m a political leader or I make a living by doing politics.
Of course, there are exceptions.
But exceptions don’t rule our life.
Exceptions are just exceptions.
If we divert the time and attention that we spend on political news to the area of our interest in life that matters the most, we gradually move in the direction of our choice.
I’m not saying as a guru or any motivational speaker.
I belong to none of those catagories.
I make a living by doing science so I know little bit about the science of body and mind, and how they are connected chemically.
Largely, this is from my own personal experience rather than scientific facts.

Political news, I believe, is a two-edged sword.
On one hand, it gives us a world of entertainment from early morning that could be quite addictive and can go till late night; on the other hand, it tends to fill our mind with information which has no value in our lives.
Not very far in the past, I used to be a young person in a hurry because I used to watch a lot of news on CNN and Fox. All of that time was going from my actual ‘me’ time or family time or work time.
I used to think consuming CNN was not a waste of time because I’m learning.
Instead, I used to think that if I sit quietly doing nothing for a few minutes, that was a huge waste of time for me.
But I recently learned that how we look at our time spent also changes with time.
Maturity also teaches us how we are maturing daily, weekly, and yearly.

Now I understand that a pause to look into my own heart or mind for a few minutes daily is never a waste of time.
This is an investment of time in me and in my health.
In my view, this is one of the most rewarding investments we can make in our lives.
Remember, physical exercise does good in our body including health by its repetitiveness, but quietly looking at the mind is eclectic.

Political news is only good for career politicians who make ends meet doing politics or the job is related to it directly or indirectly.
Majority of news is motivated by specific political philosophy or by some hidden political agendas.
Journalists inform us of the twisted news which affects us physically and emotionally.
As far as I have understood, a journalist’s job is not to teach people, nor twist the news.
Their job is to let people know what exactly the news is, as it is, unfiltered.
It’s up to the people to decide the right and wrong and make their own decision.

There should be a clear alignment between what we do and what we think in life.
Our mind produces thoughts but our body produces feelings, they are different.
If we don’t align our thoughts with our feelings then we are doing something wrong.
Without this alignment, we never produce any tangible results in our life.
This indicates that we are doing something which is not sustainable, we are doing it for the sake of doing only.
That’s the exact moment I realized when I was spending my time with political news in front of a television set or on youtube videos.
I was involved and doing one thing by my feelings but my thoughts were completely different and were giving me different directions.
We humans have the power to pause and reflect, this is basically a habit to check alignment of our feelings and thoughts, no other animals have this power.
When thought, the work of the brain aligns with feeling, the work of the body, we are in the state of being.
This state of being is required to break any wrong habits in our lives.
I completely broke my habit of watching too much political news, opinion, and analysis after realizing the state of being in my life.
Though, again, I’m not perfect but moving in that direction slowly.
Knowing this state of being is one of the best tools to go from good to great in our lives.

What controls us is very important and knowing it is extremely powerful.
Sometimes, it’s very difficult to see a fine line between help and control.
Politics itself is a good discipline of life, it helps to carve our footsteps in society, but if we are not aware of its nature, it controls us very quickly.

Remember, If everything is politicized including our body, mind, and daily work then survival becomes our full time job.

We become deprived of our life choices if what we do all day is to fill our mind with political news.

Is survival our full time job?
Possibly, if we feed only junks in our mind.

Nowadays I would rather feed cheerios, milk, and strawberries to my two years boy, play with him, and watch with him than to watch political news.
I have watched ‘the boss baby’ multiple times with my son, I don’t know the exact numbers but surely many times.
This is a computer-animated comedy movie.
My boy especially loves the boss baby character so I’m watching it over and over again to make him happy.

Many dialogues and scenes are vivid in my memory.
These dialogues from the movie I use frequently at home to create a fun and healthy environment around the house.

Some of my favourites from ‘the boss baby’.
The ‘boss baby’ runs the company ‘BabyCorp’.
“Either you run the day or the day runs you.”
“Success is not linear, it’s a wild ride.”
“Aim for failure, then only you get success.”
“No, no Jimbo, puppies are evil, we babies are losing and puppies are winning.”
“Is this my team? A musclehead, a bunch of yes men, and doodlers.”

My personal favorite is,
“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right.”
Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

Why are you afraid to ask the GPA of your professor when he/she was an undergrad?

I was very enthusiastic to learn about vipassana meditation.
I was listening to the meditation teacher who was about to give a real vipassana practical training.
Vipassana indicates “to observe things as they really are,” and that is exactly what I wanted to experience in my life.
This was the first time in my life I was in the formal training of vipassana meditation though I used to do it randomly on my own at home.
Our teacher told us to ask any questions that the participants had before the formal practical training.
In most of the programs, question-answer sessions are generally at the end of the session but in this program the question-answer session was in the beginning.
I asked my teacher, “I remain busy due to my nature of work, my mind is always occupied with things, so I often don’t get time to meditate and I generally skip. What do you recommend?”

The teacher said, “I’m not here in a position to tell all of you what to do and what not to do. That is your job. I’m here to share with you what I learnt through my more than two decades of meditation experiences.”

He further indicated to me, “You said you remain very busy all the time, that is very good for you, but being busy is your choice, I can’t help that. Therefore, I request all of you, never ever say I don’t have time, I can’t do this because I’m busy. You’re busy means the task you’re avoiding isn’t in your priority. In my personal view, busyness is a way to escape important things in life by completely substituting them with only urgent, semi urgent, and mostly mundane things. Urgent has immediate consequences but important has long term consequences so we need to balance both.”

He further said, indicating my question, “Can I ask you something? Do you have time for breathing?”
The whole participants laughed, I felt embarrassed and stupid, I said to myself why the heal I asked the question.
Teacher looked towards the organizing committee and asked, “how many people were supposed to be here according to your invitation response?”
Organizing committee representative replied, “around 40 people replied ‘yes’ to attend this session but only 28 people made it today and physically they are here.”
Then again he added the point, “Look at here, it’s not that only you are busy, there are so many out there who are also busy like you and they couldn’t make it today even though they said they would make it in the invitation reply. You made it, that’s great, thank you for being here.”

He elaborated more, “Majority of us don’t find time to do boring things in life such as meditation, but very few of us make time to do it. Just remember, many important things in life are really boring. So, it’s up to us whether we find time for it or make time for it. We don’t need to find time for meditation if we get the direct positive impact from it.”

“Whatever we are doing for a day, just stop for two minutes, close our eyes, and count our normal breathing, feel and observe it. How many times did we breathe in and breathe out?”

He said, “We did meditation for the day, we just did 2 minutes meditation, no need to suffer, no need to find time for it, no need to change our schedule. Let’s repeat this at least 10 days regularly, we will know what meditation is and what it does for us.”
“If we stop in 4 days without completing it’s dose, it won’t work.
Think of this way, what happens to our 10 days’ antibiotic dose if we stop in 5 days? Does an antibiotic work in our body?
What would your doctor respond if you say you didn’t finish the 10 days’ antibiotic dose?”, he elaborated.

This is what I learned personally from any kind of training in my life: once anything good becomes a habit, we have to treat it as a lifelong project.
The benefit would be exponential.
Once we start the project, we have to stop for a day when we still feel like continuing to do it and do it tomorrow, and day after tomorrow again.

Rumi has said beautifully, “What you seek is seeking you.”
We’re not only looking for our project, it’s also looking for us. We wouldn’t have had the desire for a project in the first place if some higher power or our intuition didn’t put it there.
This is a secret of success for any life long project.

Our teacher ended his session by saying, “if nothing works in your life, your daily routine of any good habit will work. I don’t have scientific backing at this point but your daily routine will change your biology, the nervous system.”

In 2015 in Philadelphia, I asked a very simple question to my primary care physician doctor in a follow-up appointment during the discussion of my lab test result.
He said to me, “you’re in prediabetic level, and your cholesterol is also slightly higher, you’ve to lower these numbers.”
I pondered and asked myself how did it happen? I always felt that I’m healthy but I never knew where and how I screwed up my health.
A sudden but random question came to mind, I asked, “doctor, what exactly this insulin is and why it’s not working in my body?”
To my surprise, my doctor said that insulin is a hormone and after that sentence, I simply saw only his blagging, he couldn’t answer it properly.
It was quite a shock for me.
He was above 60 in his age and doing medical practice for the last 30 plus years.
I directly came home from the clinic even though I had prior planning to go back to my office. I was preoccupied and thinking to myself only how I screwed up my health?

I was also a little bit frustrated when my doctor couldn’t explain the chemistry between insulin and my blood glucose level.
I remembered many years ago one of my teachers told me that 90 percent or more of the knowledge that we gather during our lifetime we simply forget, because we never use it.
The only knowledge we remember is that knowledge which we use by action consistently.
Sometimes we become contagious in our daily work without thinking much about what we’re doing.
Probably that’s what might have happened to my doctor. I’m not judging him and his competency, simply putting my thought on what I observed.

The number 121 mg/dL, my glucose level in blood, was bogging me so I called another clinic and made an appointment for the next day.
In the USA, at least, we have the privilege to change our primary care physician if we want.
I didn’t change my physician but saw the second physician for my lab test in a different clinic.
On the morning of the second test day I intentionally ate a peanut butter sandwich with two pieces of whole wheat bread. I also ate a bowl of cheerios with two percent cold milk, and 4 pieces of strawberries on top of it.
I also drank hot tea made from boiling water, two percent milk, tea leaves , and 2 spoonfuls of sugar.
I took my glucose test for the second time, I got 117 mg/dL.
Nurse said to me, “your number is not bad, the doctor will tell you what steps you need to take.”
I remember the first glucose test number 121 mg/dL was on fasting but this number 117 mg/dL is after eating.
“Why is this discrepancy?” I said to myself.
I guessed that these numbers keep changing according to the time difference between my eating and testing time.

Without telling my wife, otherwise she would tell me I was a nerd, I also took the third test after two days in the third clinic, I got 115 mg/dL.
After this test, I didn’t care much about these numbers, I knew these numbers could not represent my body mechanism.

If you are serious in your health and make your health a number one priority in your life, never ever settle with one doctor, one test result, and one medical equipment for any kind of diagnosis. Any of the above can give you errors due to various reasons.

After knowing these numbers I realized that my life is somewhere else, at least not in these changing numbers.
Truth to be told, I’m neither escaping nor skipping these numbers, I’m simply trying to see what is inside these numbers.
The beauty of life isn’t in managing desired numbers, beauty is in making the desired numbers, therefore, I made health a number one priority in my life.
If we only manage life, we have to avoid vanilla ice cream our whole life but if we make life we don’t have to avoid vanilla ice cream in our life.
Let me confess this, vanilla ice cream is damn good, if you can’t eat due to your numbers then you are missing the taste of life.
As a result of this life philosophy that I breathe everyday, my glucose level has consistently been under 100 on fasting for the last 5 plus years. How I did this could be the topic for next time.

Keep in mind, our life always runs on track, we know the upper number, we know the lower number, we also know what is the correct number.
More than that, our doctor and nurse also keep reminding us of these numbers quite often.
But, we never try to know what exactly these numbers do in our life.
We never try to understand these numbers in the bigger picture, if there is something wrong with these numbers we never try to fix them keeping them in perspective, we only try to manage them.
I’ve seen many people around me only managing these numbers without knowing how the desired numbers can be made.

If we are stressed out because of these undesired numbers we’re living in the past, if we’re more anxious only about the desired numbers, we’re living in the future. But if we know what these numbers do in our lives and how to make them ourselves then we are at peace, we are living in the present.

The numbers in our life are a language, they are just symbols, they don’t have absolute meaning.

My 121 number that the doctor gave me for the first time was just a representation of an instant fraction of a second’s snapshot of my body mechanism.

One of my trader friends used to tell me the numbers on the screen about his stock, he used to say that the numbers on the screen are not real, it is a representation of an instant fraction of a second’s snapshot of millions of people who are doing transactions worldwide at that moment.
“They keep changing 24/7, don’t trust them,” he told me.
My friend said to me, “If you know the language of these numbers on the screen and its mechanism for your stock, you might become the next Ray Dalio.”
I said, “whoopee.”
The real game of life is to read the language of numbers and move ahead.
Our life is somewhere else waiting for many more important things, at least not in these tiny bits of snapshot numbers.
The goal is to know the whole language by all of the numbers which can reinvent us.
These tiny snapshot numbers from here and there are like random words which don’t make any sense until we join them together and make a complete sentence that gives the full meaning.
I’m learning to live by a quote of a man who inspired billions of people on the planet.
“I am an old man and have known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened.” Mark Twain.

There are two types of people in this world. One category is those who are against the change who are kind of managing desired numbers and the other category are those who are for the change who are kind of making desired numbers.
They both have one thing in common: their conviction, therefore, the whole world is in balance.
The most beautiful thing in life is to accept wherever we are, then only we can evolve.
We don’t have to go either for change or against the change aggressively, we have to evolve through in between.
The process of evolving is basically the adaptation in life.
Once we adapt with something good, use it otherwise we forget it and become useless.
The beauty of evolving in between change and against change is that we don’t have to copy any other people, we don’t have to copy our teachers, we don’t have to copy our parents, we don’t have to copy anybody who made successful things before.

We have to learn from their genuine causes why and how they started in the first place.
Evolving means learning some specific thing for a specific purpose in life.
It doesn’t mean just to be educated which is very simplistic, it means to be genuine and practical with laser focus.
We can learn by any means, we can learn by asking simple questions, we can learn by reading, we can learn by doing, we can learn by sitting in silence, and we can learn by travelling. There are so many options.

The most important thing I am learning is by asking questions, by asking simple questions, that is one of the tools of human evolution in the 21st century.
Therefore, don’t be afraid to ask a simple question in any circumstances.
When I was a graduate student, there was a small get-together in our professors’ house. Everybody was talking about the GPA requirement to enter into a lucrative profession.
I asked my professor, “Professor, what was your GPA when you were an undergrad?”
He laughed and said, “not good.”
That answer gave me a moral boost that everybody in this world is a working progress.
Ask the dumbest question that you have in your mind if you don’t understand anything in any situation.
Who knows that single question might change your whole life.

When I was a postdoctoral researcher in Virginia, I used to teach chemistry for sophomores as a side hustle. I had one student from Saudi Arabia.
He was an average chemistry student but a very good swimmer.
One day I asked him a very simple question, “Though I’m your chemistry tutor, can you be my swimming tutor?”
Until then I didn’t know how to swim, but now I’m a reasonably good swimmer, at least I don’t die by drowning. This happened to me by asking a very simple question.
One day he took me to his swimming club where I met many very good professional swimmers along with some coaches.
During a casual talk I asked them, “Who is the second best swimmer in the world?”
Nobody could answer it.
They only knew the top swimmer in their field: Michael Phelps.
Then I realized that what is the difference between the number one and number two swimmers in the world?
“What is the secret of this number game?” I asked myself.
Why do we remember only the number one swimmer but not number two or number three at least?
I am still struggling to get the answer of these numbers.
I remember one of the best performers in the world saying, “Number one spot is always overrated. My number one spot is infinitesimal. This universe was here billions of years ago, and will remain many many thousands of billions of years more. There were many great performers in this universe before me, and many many more will be afterwards. Number one spot is nothing for me, it’s a tiny snapshot of my total performance career.”

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

Could you calculate this number?

How many times do you check your phone between 6am to 9am?
Find out this number just one time and see what number you got and what this number is all about.
This number tells us something about our life and our mindsets.
This is also simple research to reflect our habit of how our life is rolling everyday.
The study of our own life is one of the best ways to learn human experience.
Simply this number tells us what exactly the focus is.
Is it derailed or dissipated or conserved?
Unlearning old ideas or undoing harmful habits is more painful than installing new habits on us.
We need deliberate focus to unlearn the old and to install the new.
Focus shouldn’t be used as a noun, it’s always a verb for us.

One day my daughter was doing elementary math: fractions and decimals.
I was trying to help her.
Her laptop was next to her, turned off and inside the case.
I was observing her when she was doing math problems. She was partially focussed in math but not fully engaged in the problems at hand.
She was doing math but occasionally wandering and watching her laptop.
Our mind is very clever because it knows what’s around us.
It tricks us a lot if we become fools.
I told her, “ Bunu, I think it’s better if you make a habit of keeping your laptop somewhere on the shelf or in a drawer secure.”
She replied, “why?”
I said, “it would be safer, you know your younger brother’s habit, he is 15 month curious toddler, he can ruin things faster”
She added, “sure, and she put her laptop inside the drawer.”
I again added, “I prefer another room than here.”
She told me, “it doesn’t matter.”
But I requested her, “it matters, you will understand it later.”
I said, “if you don’t see anything from your eyes, your mind also doesn’t see it, if you don’t see your laptop, your mind works pretty smoothly on your math problems.”
“Trust me you will realize the benefit of it later,” I added.
I didn’t want to go deeper than this with my 11 years old daughter.
The essence is if we don’t see anything or if it is far from our reach, we become more focussed in our task at hand, the influence of the unseen thing decreases dramatically.”
Research has shown us again and again, it works fantastic to increase our focus on the task at hand.
My daughter spent in solving math problems almost forty minutes uninterrupted.

Many times, it is easy to ignore temptations when they’re far and not immediately available.
But when they are right in front of us we lose perspective and forget our distant goals.
Our human judgement is so distorted by the immediate temptations that we forget long term benefits.
It ruins our future aspirations.
This is normal and natural.

Reward is one way to start the habit of focus for kids, but by no means it’s the end solution.
I sometimes offer my daughter a reward: If you finish the task I will give you a reward, if you want now $5 but after one month $10, it’s your choice.
My daughter always says $5 right now.
Alas, instant gratification.
See the power of it even though the reward becomes double after one month.
One additional point, though it’s debatable but cash reward is good for kids because it teaches them about autonomy, and not only that it also teaches them how to handle cash with responsibility.
Instant gratification is not unusual, it is made by mind so that they can be changed only by practice.
Instant gratification derails focus and patience.

We can build focus no matter who we are or where we come from because we are born with it.

Building the habit of focus is also the same as other habits.
Kicking any habit seemed to be contagious.
If one person in our family quit smoking, the chance of another person quitting would increase dramatically.
The chance also becomes better if a neighbor, best friend, or coworker quit.
Show them that reading a physical book and checking notifications on your smartphone at same time aren’t healthy.

Increase your focus rather than your working time.
Focused work produces real evolutionary results on time but routine work produces only default results.
Focus habit quadruples the results overtime.
Teach your kids what focused work is and what just work is.
Show them the difference.
Focused person says, “ I’m smart enough to figure out what my situation is telling me, I’m writing a poem.”
But a working person says, “I’m smarter than my situation so that I’m writing a poem and checking emails.”

Few weeks ago, I told my family I will take them hiking the following weekend.
For some reason I couldn’t take them hiking on that weekend and I went to work.
But during work, my mind was wandering for hiking.
My kids’ minds were more devastated than mine.
To be honest, I was at work but my mind was hiking.
If we are hiking, then our mind should be hiking and if we are at work then our mind should be at work.
This is only possible if we’ve a focused mind.
Life requires a lot of work but a lot of work requires a small monomaniacal focus.

Focus can be made by repeated rigorous mental practices.
There is a reason why Elon Musk, Bill Gates, and Warren Buffett read a physical book a few hours everyday in a distraction-free environment.
They practice focus by gaining knowledge.

Have you ever thought about your web-surfing habit?
Is it inquisitive or entertaining?
Most of the time we don’t follow much discipline if we are just moving from one website to another.
We have to understand our entertaining habit if we never pause to read anything longer than a tweet or short message.
Much of the self-focus comes from integrating habits over time, therefore, we have to guard our everyday habits.
Passing up entertainment for self-focus is hard but achievable.

Success requires much more discipline than grabbing a phone and checking tweets.
“One of the pillars of success is focus,” says the author of “5am Club” Robin Sharma.
Success is conditional but it is within our reach as long as we maintain the focus to try, and try again.
Focused habit incicites mastery but slowly.
Mastery is inherently a long term game and in the 21st century, the complete mastery of anything is unattainable but focused habit keeps mastery uptrend.
Serena Williams will never fully master the game of tennis.
Tiger Woods will never fully master the game of Golf.
Aamir Khan will never fully master the game of acting.
But their focus always keeps them on track.
Meaningful achievement depends on one’s habits and focusing toward the uptrend.

As I mentioned earlier, a focus habit begins with a reward system in kids but it is not a long term solution.
I tell my daughters if you read 20 pages today, I will let you watch your favourite movie next saturday.
They become so happy, they read 20 pages with excitement.
I am also quite aware that if I encourage my daughter to read by giving her movie reward, she will become more diligent in the short term and lose interest in reading in the long run when I stop rewarding her.
Reward should only be given to create new habits, otherwise reward motivates them to get rewards only.

Reward could be a groundwork to foster mastery in anything of interest.
Habit follows the intrinsic motivation toward deep work.
The key is reward should always be the initiator.
But the habit unknowingly elevates new neural connections in the brain and breaks the path for the reward system to discover new excitements on work of interest.
Extrinsic motivation of reward flows towards intrinsic motivation.
Intrinsic motivation is made, not born, and it always outperforms extrinsic motivation in the long run.
Reward is always external but is one of the tools to take us into the internal.
External is finite but internal is renewable.
External doesn’t promote greater physical and mental well-being but internal promotes both.
Joy of reading biology becomes similar to watching Tiktok.
If you can not believe it, ask Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, an american psychologist and author of “Finding Flow’, who says, “we reach in the state of flow when we work for our interest, not in leisure.”

From my own experience, humans’ intrinsic nature is to be curious.
This experience I have, because me and my wife have been around our three children for quite a time.
Me and my wife both are in the scientific research field.
Have you ever seen a one year old or a two year old who’s not curious?
Both me and my wife haven’t.
This is one reason we humans are creatures of curiosity.
If at age 10 or 53, we suddenly become passive, that’s not because it’s our character or due to age.
It’s because something changed our default brain setting during our growth.
That’s something is the deterioration of our focus overtime.

Let’s go back to our math problem.
If your final number is 0-3, congratulations.
Your focus power is in uptrend.
At present, the final number for mass population is 18.
We have a lot of work to be done.

I wish all of my readers a very happy, healthy, and prosperous new year 2021.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina

Why did Mark Twain never work a single day in his life?

What is the benefit of death?
Well I’m starting out with a very sad point but it is the reality for all of us.
If we accept now that we are mortal and that day is sometime in the future, we live a very powerful life.
Late Steve Jobs said and I quote here, “ the benefit of death is you know not to waste life living someone else’s choices.”
This is the real secret to life-to be completely engaged with our own choices with what we are doing in this life here on earth. Our choice shouldn’t be our work, it should be our everyday play.
Human mind is constructed in such a way that we don’t want to work but we want to play.
Both are our own mental activities but the mind distinguishes them pretty quickly.
In reality, work and play are two different things, work is to satisfy others but play is to satisfy ourselves.
Life without our own choice of play is the most common reason to give up early.
We have to have our own choices in life, our own parameters, and we have to stick to them thoroughly.
We can not measure the effectiveness of our own choices in life unless we stick with our own measuring parameters.
Someone else’s choice in life in the long-run gives us nothing but the taste of regret.
The bottom line is if we live in other people’s choices then we regret later in the future.
We must live with our own choice that makes us happy, healthy, and prosperous.

Perfect example, Warren Buffett, who is an American investor, business tycoon, philanthropist, and the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, one of the world’s most powerful companies. He is considered one of the most successful investors of our time. He started his play of choice at age 8 and he is playing his game of choice until now. He is 90 years old now, still active and vibrant with his play.

Most people don’t realize that our own life will echo our own everyday work.
If we become flexible and mindful in our daily work as our everyday play, we not only get better results but our life also becomes better as a result of better play.

Life does not become perfect, only perfect life play makes our life perfect.
If we are not willing to learn the life play, no one can help us but if we are determined to learn the life play, no one can stop us.
Life play doesn’t come easy, it doesn’t come from what we do occasionally.
It always comes from what we do everyday with heart, will, and happiness.
Many of us only hope for a perfect play which is not going to happen anytime soon until we put practice on play.
Only hope of a good life-play in reality is the worst of all evils because it prolongs the torments on us.
Only hope without practice on play is a daydream.

There are mainly two very different aspects of human minds which guide our choices.
The first is the logical mind which is driven by different thoughts that connect what we already understand in the complex problems in order to produce the solutions.
Most of the time this thought limits us in the comfort zone.
Many more times these thoughts are also influenced by other people’s choices.

The second thought comes from our intuition, driven by inspiration that can look at the problem and immediately figure out the creative solutions.
Most of the time this comes suddenly from our own choice of play.
Intuition is subconscious thought that brings feelings first and when feelings are put into action produces results.

I would like to share a real story about how intuition works and why we should nurture it.
Edwin Land, an inventor of Polaroid cameras, a pioneer of instant photography, was on vacation with his family in 1943.
During this vacation, one of his daughters, 3-year-old, pressed him why she couldn’t see a picture he’d just taken.
She needed it right away.
The impatience of the 3-year-old daughter catalyzes Land for a strong intuition.
After the vacation, Land and his research team threw all of their research effort to the challenge of instant photography.
Instant intuition became similar to instant photography for him.
In only 3-years after that, the product of instant photography was ready in many stores in the market.

Our human nature is intuitive if we practice it in the correct way.
Sometimes we bog down so much how to learn things but what we forget is that unlearning things is more difficult than learning the same.
Our intuition is directly or indirectly correlated to the process of unlearning.
Because unlearning provides space in our mind so that we can learn new things.
Trusting our intuition automatically tells us to unlearn things which are not working previously in our lives.

Human progress doesn’t come from the development of many more theories, it mostly comes from somebody applying or testing these theories and finds a solution.
Intuition is our key to test these unsubstantiated theories and find the long lasting results.
If everybody uses the power of intuition in their toolbox, the world would be a different place now.
Ask the power of intuition to the Xerox company that they failed to utilize it completely.
Xerox created personal computers 10 years before Apple.
Xerox created icon-based operating systems 15 years before Microsoft.
Xerox created an internet service 20 years before Netscape.
Yet Xerox bypassed all of these opportunities.
The real problem is Xerox read theories but couldn’t apply the intuition to test the real theories.

Any person who runs a marathon knows that finishing a marathon requires more than just running.
No matter how strong our body is, at some point during running our body wants to stop and take a rest. But the runner has trained his or her mind in such a way that he or she keeps running mentally.
His or her body becomes tired but still he or she runs because he or she has trained his or her willpower.
Our intuition is our willpower, more we use it, more it enhances the willpower.
If we stop running in the middle of the marathon, it’s due to our emotion.
Our emotions which come before anything else deplete our intuition and consequently diminishes our ability to control our actions.
Our intuition is our catalyst for the run to finish because we know we can finish it, we have trained so much for this run.
Our intuition tells us to stay focused on the run.
Intuition doesn’t come regularly, it comes when we have a habit of engaging with our serene thoughts.
We cannot force ourself to be more intuitive, it comes naturally when we honor it with practice.

Our intuition power also depends on our health status.
To do mental work we need a lot of glucose, a source of energy. We can not do a thinking job without a lot of glucose in the bloodstream.
The glucose itself does not enter into the brain but it changes into neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters are chemicals which are used by our brain cells to send signals.
If we have a deficiency of neurotransmitters, we stop thinking, we stop our intuition, we deplete our willpower.

I have three kids, and one saturday, my wife told me to look after them and she left.
After she left I made sure that the entrance door is locked so that I wouldn’t lose track of them.
I discovered very quickly that if they were making noise, they were good, no problem. But after a few minutes everything became very quiet, then my intuition started to work and telling me something isn’t right.
I came around the kitchen and saw that two older ones were trying to cut the younger one’s hair with a sharp scissor.

Intuition works best when we store energy. Invitation of stillness is storing body energy.
We should spend time on quietness, observe things mentally, meditate, exercise, where our intuition works the best.
It is this simple as it is.
I don’t know how the microwave works, but I know when I put my sweet potato inside it, it will cook my sweet potato, and I’m using it every single day.

Mark Twain, the greatest American writer and the father of American literature has said that he never worked a single day in his life, everything has been done by his subconscious and intuition.
Nurture your intuition everybody.

Thank you for your time.
-Yam Timsina

What did you find in your destination?

It was a winter evening in Virginia.
I was at a gathering.
My friend’s boss was an author and a researcher in a reputed publishing house.
We were outside in a garden and she told us a story about how she found her amazing husband, a university professor.
At one point of her career, she was working as a sales assistant in downtown Chicago and she used to ride a train to commute.
One day she became late and missed her train for office.
She was sad, irritated, and upset and blamed herself for being lazy.
She also missed an early office meeting on that day.
In a grumpy mood, she was waiting for another train to catch.
A man appeared in the train station, who was a graduate student in Northwestern University.
Long story short, she pointed to her husband and said that if I wouldn’t have missed that train on that day, I would certainly miss this amazing man from my life.
And I was attending to celebrate their 21st marriage anniversary gathering.

This story taught me why we should cherish every single moment of our passing life irrespective of the nature of moments.
Life is made up of various small passing moments which most of the time we neglect in need of bigger goals and destinations.
Actually life happens when we are hustling for something.

You are attending a party for your recognition in your office because you got a promotion, and suddenly you receive a call from your mom that your dad is diagnosed with cancer.
As we all know we are not perfect, we all have issues in the family, you were avoiding your brother’s call but suddenly you heard that your brother died due to chronic heart attack.
Recently you got furlough, you were in stress so you forgot to call your mom on mother’s day.
This is only a small glimpse of our everyday life.
Since most of us have a tendency to feel good only if things are going our way, all the time we are trying to control everything in our lives.
If we rush only for a destination by brushing off pure moments, our life becomes hollow and we suffer a lot.
I think this is not the way to live a life.
Beauty of life remains in all moments of hustling, pain, suffering, and happiness.
We have to observe, absorb, and assimilate all of them.
This is a process of life.
Destination is a by-product of our process.

Everybody says life is not for a destination, life is a journey but very few actually adopt this mantra and apply it.
Many of us are always in rush, workloads, family schedules, kids responsibilities, and health schedules. Many of us have side hustles along with our main profession too.
Nonetheless, we run around constantly trying to get something, trying to control something, and trying to determine where the destination is in our lives.
We carry so much tension, anxiety, and fear that we completely forget the flow of life around us.
If we run only to catch something then we miss many things in life.
Life becomes hell.

There is always an interval between any two tasks, if we don’t live in that interval and always worry about the next pending task, then we are not living a life.
That interval between two tasks is actually a life process many of us don’t identify or ignore.

Current corporate world has also ignited the concept that vision-driven leaders recognize the destination rather than path. They said destination matters not the path.
In reality, it doesn’t apply all the time, because life isn’t business.
Business needs the end product faster to get profit faster, but life itself is not the business of only profit and loss.
Life is more of exploration of paths so that we become healthy and happy.

One day I visited my friend Nitesh’s office due to some personal affair.
The other day he told me he had a hectic schedule for that day even though he invited me to his office.
When I reached his office, he was on the phone.
He signaled me to sit on the chair, later I knew he was talking to his elder sister.
His nephew was selected for the national championship for swimming competition.
He expressed his happiness and support for his nephew and sister for their achievement.
He ended that call in less than two minutes but I felt that those two minutes talking were really thrilling and encouraging.
I asked him, “Did you finish your presentation this morning?”
He replied, “Yes, I did.”
It was fantastic and the client appreciated his strategy and hopefully they are going to sign the contract very soon.
He added, “I have another presentation at 4pm.”
Looking at his freshness and energy, I asked him, “Nitesh, how do you manage all of this?”
He asked, “What do you mean?”
“You are so fresh, so energetic and you accomplish so much so easily” I added.
He replied, “There is nothing new, I just keep things in perspective, I know how to utilize the moment and how to accomplish it without burning my life.”
He added, “To be honest, those two minutes which I spent with my sister on the phone was my interval time between my two tasks, those two minutes were best for the day and that keeps me moving my whole day smoothly.”

He further told me that there are two types of people in this world. One type who stop their work due to rainfall. They hate it and blame the rain for their stoppage.
The other category of people who enjoy every bit of moment, even the rain and lightning.
They enjoy every passing moment and accomplish their task.
They said, “Oh it’s raining, so nice. Rain is wiping out the dust of the environment, so fresh.”
“I am in the second category,” he added.
“I can enjoy my life in seconds, I don’t need minutes to enjoy it.”
This whole universe is around us for more than 13 billion years, any natural processes around us were here before we were born and will remain here until we die.
The manifestation of each moment is amazing so that we must accept the natural result.
We become more energized and excited in our task if we cherish the interval of life.
We can not avoid the happening moments.
We have to accept them as they are.
There is beauty in acceptance.
We must know how to laugh in our tears. We must know how to cry in our laughter.
This isn’t complicated to understand, there is also an interval between laugh and tears, we just don’t apply it in our life.

Interval is about understanding where we’re going, and destination is the road we’re planning to take but still don’t have road signs. Interval comes first because we have to make road signs to reach a destination.

The important thing is that we don’t have to find our final destination at once, and we can avoid wasting a lot of time and worry trying to find a destination.
Destination is not a once-and-done phenomenon.
It’s a continuous process.
If we don’t enjoy every passing moment, we move towards boredom and disinterest, and destination without inspiring and happy process leads to destination without further direction.

If we focus on what is happening around us rather than what isn’t happening, our progress becomes exponential, not incremental.
One simple example.
Garrett Camp and Travis Kalanick, the founders of groundbreaking transportation today, Uber, were freezing at night in the streets of Paris because they couldn’t get a cab.
The moment was painful for them but they translated the moment of pain to revolutionary transportation business without owning a single car.
They have just one app.
If we appreciate every single moment whether it is a painful or happy moment, blue-sky ideation arrives.

We shouldn’t suffer and bleed in the process of life, which is very simple; enjoy every bit and every piece of it.
As we all know many people during their time said that two brothers Wilbur and Orville Wright were stupid.
Their destination of making a “flying machine” was criticized by many as a foolish idea or impossible task.
Instead they enjoy every single obstacle they faced.
They accepted and appreciated every single moment of not having the sufficient resource that they needed for their final destination.
They never finished high school.
They were self-taught.
The only thing kept them moving forward was the excitement of the process of making a “flying machine.”

Loving the process rather than destination is our tool to change the status quo.
Process itself should be a catalyst for passion and excitement.
Every single moment around us is a process, so nurture it, cherish it, and enjoy it.
Reaching a destination provides immediate satisfaction, but the process of achieving a destination provides a lasting satisfaction.
There is no destination in life, once you reach your destination, another destination appears, so enjoy the interval.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina

Are you a hard worker or smart worker?

I would like to share a story from The New York Times bestselling author and medical surgeon, Don Miguel Ruiz.
One man wanted to free himself from his suffering and pain so he went to his mentor, a Guru, for help.
He asked, “Guru, if I meditate four hours a day, how long will it take me to remove my suffering and pain?”
The Guru looked at him and replied, “If you meditate four hours a day, probably, you will remove your suffering and pain in ten years.”
Bringing his hard working mentality, the man said, “ Oh, Guru, what if I meditate eight hours a day, how long will it take me to remove my suffering and pain?”
Guru looked at him and said, “If you meditate eight hours a day, perhaps you will remove your suffering and pain in twenty years.”
“But why will it take me longer if I meditate more?” the man asked again.
Guru replied, “You are not here to sacrifice your joy, your family, your relationship, and your life.
You are here to live freely, to be happy, and to love the way you are; then only you will be free from suffering and pain.

The core lesson I got: If you can do your best in two hours, but you spend eight hours instead, you only grow tired and frustrated, miss the whole point of love and life, and you won’t enjoy your life.
Don’t be that person.
Do your best and then only you can live freely, you can love, and be happy.

This is the key difference between hard worker and smart worker.

Everything is moving faster than ever.
We are living in nanoseconds now, not in days, weeks or months.
Fast progress in technology and better understanding of the human body and mind has changed the way we think and work in the present society.
If only hard work is the weapon to succeed then coal miners, farmers, and construction workers would be the most successful people in the world.
Many hard working people in many areas are short of fame, recognition, and status because they completely forget or ignore to work smartly.

I have read that many smart people do meditation regularly but hard working people don’t get time to do meditation, because they are too busy and don’t have time to do so.
Regular meditation is a key tool for smart work because it is the only way to make our brain healthy.
Overall exercise makes our body healthy but meditation does the same for the brain.
Needless to say, today’s world is run by the brain, especially the healthy brain.
I shared one of my colleagues that Tony Robbins does one to two hour mediation everyday.
She immediately replied, “Oh whoa, I wish I had such free time. I don’t have free time, I’m always on schedule and very busy.”

After knowing the fact that smart working people bring creativity by meditation and hard working people just don’t get time for meditation, I also decided to learn this mind exercise habit.

I arranged for meditation class twice a week, an hour a session.

In my first class, my meditation instructor said, “Sit down in a cross-legged position on the floor and close your eyes for sixty seconds.”
I obeyed his instruction and did the same.
I asked, “What should I do after closing my eyes?”
He replied, “Nothing, just relax, remain calm.”
Probably after ten seconds I thought that meditation is the most annoying and disturbing thing ever I am learning in my life.
After I closed my eyes, innumerable things came to my mind: my stove at home, did I turn it off?
My office assignment which I haven’t finished yet, the deadline is looming.
My sister in Cincinnati is sick, I have to visit her.
I shouldn’t be late for tonight’s dinner with my fiance.
These are only some glimpses of so many other things that came in my mind.
Oh my god, how do people do mediation for hours and hours?

After sixty seconds, my instructor said, “How did you feel?”
I said, “Terrible, I was inside my mental jail, in sixty seconds with my closed eyes I recall more things than in a month with my open eyes.”
My teacher said, “You just started your mental motion, you should learn continuously to be in motion until some force stops you and you become mentally stationary.”
“Motion doesn’t give you results, you get results only when you finish motion”, he added.
Many smart people spend time on meditation to make their mind empty so that they can plant whatever they want.
Meditation makes their empty mind a more fertile ground where they can plant the seeds of better ideas, supreme thoughts, and positive vibrations.
Most importantly, meditation grows the seeds of love, affection, and care in mind.

There is a huge difference between smart-working people and hard working people in many aspects.
Consistent regular meditation is just one of many of those tools.
Smart working people are balanced people, they know the key points to get work done, they focus a lot on their health, diet, and relationship.
Quite amazingly, they spend a lot of time alone.

They spend a lot of time thinking and wandering.

Smart working people change from moment to moment, they always think that it makes a huge difference when you are healthy as opposed to sick.

Relatively hard working people don’t care about healthy habits, they become sick pretty quick.
Mostly they are haphazard and have no sense of balance on various aspects of life because they have poor understanding of how the brain actually works effectively.
They rarely read books outside of their profession.
Most of the time they have ready-made answers, “I don’t have time to read outside books.”
They are poor at making connections between different dots of life in one pattern, because they see the flow of life only in one direction.

Hard Working people try too hard to do more than their best, they will spend more energy than is needed and in the end their best will not be enough.
When they overdo, they deplete their body and go against themselves, and it will take them longer to accomplish their goals.

When I first came to the USA, more than a decade ago, I did a low paid hourly job for some time to survive.
I was attending school as well as working in a cafeteria.
I was unable to afford a new car so I was driving a very old car.
One day my car broke down on the way to work and I took it to the workshop to fix it.
The mechanic examined it and said it costs four hundred dollars to fix the car.
He said, “The equipment costs seventy five dollars and three hundred dollars is labor plus tax.”
He added, “You can pick up your car tomorrow at noon.”
I said,” “If it takes only two hours then why are you charging me three hundred dollars?”
He replied, “Sir, I am charging you not only for two hours but also my nine years of hard work: five years auto engineering and four years of internship.”
I didn’t say anything, I remained silent.
Actually, the first time in my life I understood the price of something which I never realized before.
I also understood why I pay three hundred dollars to my primary care physician for a thirty minutes health check up in the clinic.
I widely opened my brain and told him to fix my car.

I was about to leave, I asked him again, “Could you fix my car today so that I can pick it up in the evening?”
He replied, “Sir, I was a very hard working person before but I suffered a lot. Believe me. I owned this workshop after many years of hard work. I started as a cleaning boy in a car dealer shop many years ago.”
“Recently I am learning smart work instead of hard work. My productivity and health has gone up pretty quickly,” he further added.
He said, “I might finish your work today by working a little longer but my wife wouldn’t be happy at home if I become late for dinner because we have invited our niece for dinner tonight.”
I felt how courageous and sincere this person is.
He is communicating with me as clearly as he can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness, and drama.
He is speaking with integrity.
He is saying only what he means and using his words in the direction of truth.

In any circumstance hard work does not mean we should constantly work all the time.
Naturally, our body and mind is not designed for it.
But hard work should be in such a way that our mind should constantly enjoy and explore the work.

Hard work becomes smart work when we tweak the mind to get the best of the best in everything.

Smart working people stick to their best for any positive atomic habit.
Most importantly, they avoid self-judgement, self-abuse, and regret.

But in a lot of cases hardworking people fall in the trap of self-judgement, self-abuse, and regret.
Personally I have also experienced these types of people in my life directly or indirectly.
They often exhibit unhygienic, nerdy, and pompous behaviour.

I experienced this car mechanic’s transformation from a hard worker to a smart worker as a representation.
He was living his life with blossom.
Most importantly, he was productive, he was giving himself to his family, to his community, to everything.
He was impeccable, he was taking responsibility for his actions, but he wasn’t judging or blaming himself.
I learned from him: in any condition, do your best, no more and no less.
Learn how to change your best over time.
It’s true that hard work is required everywhere but let’s not forget to work smart.
Smart work is a choice, and so is the hard work.

Thank you for your time.
– Yam Timsina