#PrayForFrance

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Pray4franc

Woke up this morning to horrific news from France.  My deepest condolences and prayers to the victims and their loved ones.

The most precious, valuable thing apart from the 4 elements on this blue planet are humans. The world we know wouldn’t exist if there were no humans.  No matter which religion or cult we are following,  they all teach us the value of a human life. None of them support killing people.

It’s just 14th of July and according to  Wikipedia there were already  more than 80 terror attacks reported (list of Terror attacks).  I am asking myself why this cruelty? What are those organizations/ individuals trying to achieve?  Definitely not peace and freedom. With this horrific, terrifying inhuman approach they just put their fellow human beings of same religious conviction, nationality, race, profession in jeopardy.

After listening to the news and reading few articles I felt, totally disturbed and my eyes were filled with tears. There was a certain anger building up inside me because I felt so powerless and helpless . The entire day I was thinking about how can I / we prevent terror attacks?  Oh well , I know  you are rolling your eyes now and thinking, how can she stop something  which the greatest minds of our time couldn’t do.  I am not an economist nor a politician or a religious leader and most probably my IQ is below average. But I think, if we could wipe out revenge,  jealousy and greed from us there won’t be any terror attacks like this.  Furthermore I strongly believe it has to start within each and every one of  us. Find happiness in what you have and don’t be jealous about things which you don’t have. Be fare in everything you do!  Then apply the same logic in your family – between parents and kids;  then on your extended family members, friends etc.  If everyone is satisfied then there is no need for fight.

So don’t hesitate and let’s try to make the world a better place; You and I, we are the ones who can make this change!

Like I mentioned before, it’s just a humble thought which came up in my mind.

Challenge the norms

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What do you want to be when you grow up? Do you remember the first time you heard this question? I don’t. But most probably I said Mickey Mouse or some other cartoon figure with magic powers.

From my young school days, I had a desire to be a doctor. I think deep down inside me, I believed that doctors have some magical power to heal people. I was even considering  to pursue  with the med school two, three years ago. After doing the math -> years of med school + residency + specialize, I realized that it’s too late, by the time I become a heart surgeon, I might be facing retirement 😉 Becoming a doctor was just one of few dreams. Almost all the Indian kids growing up abroad want to become a doctor, lawyer or an engineer. And guess what, I am an engineer. Apart from becoming a doctor, I wanted to become a successful writer, adopt a child, build an orphanage in Kerala, do my Arangetram etc.

As kids our dreams are comparable to a bird with a lot of colourful feathers. We are not aware of the risks and certainly not thinking about the negative impacts, which might follow. Children are full of positivity. As we grow old like a bird loses its feathers, our dreams wither away. Dreams are indeed very strange, my dear friend! 

So what happened to that curious child? I was a talkative child; I used to ask so many questions and was telling stories all the time. Recently I saw an old video of mine and I couldn’t recognize myself. That 7 year old girl was full of energy and blabbering nonstop. As children we want to be so many things and the sky is our limit. An innocent 7-year-old explaining about her dream of becoming a doctor, catching thieves or becoming a fire fighter, certainly is a good party entertainer. Everyone listening to this kid is amused and will encourage her. Time passes by, in your early teens try to talk about your dreams, most probably you will face the first “NOs” and discouraging statements like:

 “You shouldn’t compare yourself with that person, You are not good at it .… Your primary focus should be achieve higher scores! …….Don’t ask stupid questions! ….Listen to us, we know what’s better for you! Don’t waste your time!”

In our early 20s most of us are usually finishing school/college, finding the first part/ full time job. If you mention about your dream now, then they will laugh at you and say:

”Oh common… don’t be silly… you are not a child anymore…don’t be a dreamer….Do you really think you can pull it off?.. think about your future…you don’t have much time to waste… get a job and get married!”

While growing up we probably hear a lot of NOs and undergo diplomatic brainwashes. The reason for this is because our friends and family are protective of us and they don’t want us to fail or get hurt.  All these Don’ts  and NOs creates a huge wall of fear inside us. This ugly, huge, dreaded wall is standing between us and our dreams. Instead of breaking down this imaginary wall, we project a fake dream on it. A dream which is approved by the society where we live. A dream that makes others happy and where you should be also happy because it’s what everyone else does. The average dream where you don’t get hurt. School -> Graduation-> Complete a professional course -> Job -> Marriage -> Kids -> Say no to your  Kids ->  A NEVER ending loop

From our mid 20s onwards it should be us, who decides if the imaginary wall should disappear or not. This wall is a projection of our insecurities and fear. Most of the time we are not aware of this and we subconsciously follow after a fake path. Until and unless some event  wakes you up. In my case it was Hanspeter, my former  boss. I used to work for a small international startup company. Back then we were like around 25 employees. Now it’s one of the world’s leading BPM venture companies. One day during our coffee break, I told him that I am going through some personal issues. That’s where he gave me the best advice someone ever gave to me:” Petsy, don’t be too nice all the time and do not say yes to everything. The world belongs to those who always ask questions.” As usual I didn’t understand the deeper meaning of what he said. It took me a while to digest but slowly I understood. In a polite way he was telling me to stand up and challenge; to get out of my comfort zone; to spread my wings and fly! That’s when I started to dream again, where I got my confidence back and started questioning. It was not easy, it’s a scary thought because you are on your own. You can’t blame anyone else anymore. Very soon I realized when you try doing things differently or follow a not so familiar/ common path, you scare and challenge the people around you. So forget about the Naysayers! Follow your dream!  You may fall quite often on your path. Each time when you fail, think about the bouncing doll you had, when you were a child. No matter how often, forcefully you hit on it, it always bounced back and smiled back at you. All the obstacles and failures will bring you closer to your dream.

We can’t undo the decisions we made or were forced on us in the past. BUT you can totally change what you are going to do while or after reading this blog. You CAN decide to fulfill your dream as of today, as of now, like this very second. If you follow your dream, you might have to say No, get out of your comfort zone and sometimes even detach yourself from the emotional dramas going on around you.

Common guys, be brave! Don’t neglect your dreams/ goals. Let’s pursue a life of fulfillment, and happiness. It took me a while to understand the importance of having a dream and to be truly myself.

Can I read your mind and say what you are thinking now? You are asking yourself what is this crazy girl dreaming of?  Oh well my dear reader, stay tuned, one day I will definitely share it here.  

And now STOP reading this blog;  Write down your dreams/goals; Save it on your device or pin it somewhere. Draft a plan and start your journey!

Xoxo

Double Standards

When a man gives his opinion, he’s a man. When a woman gives her opinion, she’s a bitch. – Bette Davis

We will find double standards in almost every sector of life, but in my humble opinion, the worst most painful one is between men and women. In this blog I want to share 2 incidents which recently happened.

1. Incident

The other day I finished my training late and there was a sudden downpour; felt like the clouds were mad at someone for holding them back for so long. It was inevitable that I hail a cab, quite relieved to be greeted by a friendly smile. Travelling alone, I make it a point not to divulge my exact address, asking to be dropped off at the city center works fine.

“Oh, I know this place… it’s a really nice area” he said. I could just manage a smile, not wanting to engage in conversation after an intense workout. He had to go on though… persisted with regular questions like; “Where are you from? Where are your parents?  Are you living alone?  Etc.  As usual I answered all the questions and felt bad for not actively participating in the conversation. So I asked him the same questions and he told me where  he is from and that his wife and kids were living there and he regularly visits them. My first thought was, a dedicated husband and father, working far away from home to provide for his family. This thought didn’t last long, because out of the blue he asked me:

“Do you want to drink coffee?”(By the way it was 10:30 pm)
Me: “No, Thanks. I am fine.”
You know, I am looking for a girlfriend. It is DIFFICULT because my wife is not here”
Me: “Oh, that’s so sad. Does your wife have a boyfriend in Iraq? I guess it’s also very difficult for her too, am I right?”
“Oh no, she is not supposed to do that. She SHOULD take care of my parents and children.”

2. Incident

A very good friend of mine Joe and his friends organize “guys’ night” every then and now. Basically they rent a business apartment for the weekend and do guy’s stuff. So you might thing what’s wrong in that. Everyone needs a break from everyday life. There’s no  harm in playing poker, video games, getting drunk etc., right? Oh well I agree with you on that. In their case they even go one step further and to spice the evening they pay women to be their “girlfriend”. According to him they treat those ladies with respect  and  they don’t have to do anything which they don’t like.  In a way there is no difference between him, his friends and the taxi driver.  Few of you might ask me: “Common girl, what’s wrong in that? ”. Yes, I tried to convince myself that this is the new reality. I thought if it’s ok with their wives, why should I bother about it. But the fact is none of their wives know about it and most depressing part is that one of his friend’s wife just gave birth to their first child. While she was in pain and struggling with the changes, he was out there having a great time with some random woman.

Few days later during our usual conversation Joe told that the one of his friends saw the wife of another friend in a club dancing with some other guys. This friend now thinks that she is cheating. I had to stop Joe right there and told him that I don’t want to hear about it and asked him: “It is ok if you guys go out  with other women and have “FUN”,  but as soon as women  do the same it’s a crime?”

Apart from the fact  being sexually active with someone else rather than your partner, while you are in a committed relationship, is strictly against my ethics, let’s focus here on the double standards. Why is it ok for men to screw (sorry for my bad language) someone else’s wife, mom, sister or daughter but the women in their house shouldn’t.

My intention is not generalize men and pointing fingers at them. I have only one question: “Why do (not all of you) you do things which you will never allow or wish to happen to your wife/sister/mom?”

 „What goes around, comes certainly back around”

Daily Prompt: I Pledge Allegiance. Are you patriotic?

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In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “I Pledge Allegiance.

My initial reaction to this question would be to say “no” because the pictures coming up in my mind are of War, Soldiers and a lot of blood. So I thought today’s blog will be a one liner something like: No, I am not a patriotic.

My mind couldn’t rest. These two questions haunted me for couple of hours. I decided to ask my best friend Google about it. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary Patriotic means

partiotic

Oh well this was not a great help. In fact I got more confused because I was thinking about all the people with dual Nationalities. Suppose both countries are competing against each other, which country one should choose? Country of origin or where you was born?

Even though I am no longer an Indian, at least on paper, I was deeply saddened at the sudden demise of the former president of India Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam. It felt like someone in my family died.
When I watched the documentary “India’s daughter”, on BBC, it left me feeling very angry. Words are not enough to fully express my grief and anger. The fact that Indian government officials banned “India’s Daughter” made the situation even worse. Though I am not an “Indian”, I felt ashamed.

To shed some honest light on this, When Austria wins a gold medal in Winter Olympic, I will be jumping around like a child and say: “Look we did it, WE won” :-). I guess what I am trying to say is, we are evolving or progressing to being global citizens.

Here’s another complication. How should we feel about the country we choose to live? In my case that would be Switzerland. You won’t believe how often I say to friends:”…and you people put your money in OUR banks.” or “WE have the best chocolate” etc. While those listening to me, clearly see that I am not of European decent. Still, I choose to speak this way, they accept.

On the other side I don’t consider myself patriotic in the sense that I’d be willing to die for any of these countries. I have huge respect to all the brave men, who fight for us and protect us threats. I personally would never do that, you may call me “Chicken”. There are many ways to express patriotism, I’m afraid I’d be more of a burden, rather than add value – if I joined the armed forces of any country.

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Now back to the original question: Am I a Patriotic? I am considering myself as a citizen of the world and I love my world and I am willing to engage myself in activities which will make my world to a better place. What do you think dear reader? Am I Patriotic?

Concluding today’s blog with a famous quote of Albert Einstein: “Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind.”

The Metabolic Typing Test

For the past two and half years according to my food log I was eating healthy. Almost no carbs, a lot of healthy protein, drank almost 2 liters of green tea every day; Basically I was following a low carb high protein diet. And Yes, occasionally I had my devious meals like yummy burgers, Chicken biriyani, Pasta etc. Even though I was eating “healthy”, I was not losing weight. You know how frustrating it is, right? 

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I really don’t remember who told me about it, but somehow I got to know about the Metabolic Typing Diet. Listen guys, did you know that each of us are so unique that certain foods react on each of us differently?Oh well, I didn’t.I was shocked about my Metabolic Typing test result because my body needs carbs. I felt like hit by a truck. My ideal meal should consist of 50% carbs, 40% protein and 10% fat. I shouldn’t consume dairy products, red meat,theanine and caffeine at all. I know what you are thinking right now or I can imagine your face expression. All the GREEN TEA I had was for nothing .

Based on my experience, I would suggest anyone who wants to lose weight or improve their lifestyle to do the Metabolic Typing Test. There are so many different diets out there, and we spent so much money on them without even knowing if it’s the right diet. Apart from being lazy one of the many mistakes I made was to go with the flow. I assumed all the so called “healthy” foods, which I know through hearsay, were going to do the magic on me. The fact is, it is wrong to think about nutrition that one diet is right for everyone.
Each one of us has a unique Metabolic Type. Eating the right foods in the right amount will make us feel great and improve our metabolism. Metabolic Typing Diet will help to achieve and maintain ideal weight, conquer indigestion and ultimately improve one’s lifestyle.
The first step towards weight loss is to know your body and to give the right fuel to it. In other words, the first item on your checklist should be Metabolic Typing Test  . If you don’t match your nutrition to your metabolism, how are you going to lose weight? Oh well, all this sounds nice and I started to follow the plan. It was really nice and I could see the first signs of success but you know what happened. Remember 5 steps ahead and 10 backwards. Once again I am back on track.

Concluding this blog with a famous quote of Arnold Schwarzenegger: “Failure is not an option. Everyone has to succeed”

Until next time, I am signing off – Keep calm and stay healthy 

Day 4 – Keep Calm and Stay Healthy

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KCASHToday’s assignment is to publish a post I‘d like my ideal audience to read.

Once I gain experience in blogging and improve English writing skills, I will certainly blog about fashion, travel experience, violence against women, restaurant reviews and random thoughts.

For today’s assignment though the first thought that came to mind was Healthy Weight loss. For more than 2 years I am trying to get back in shape. By now I am an expert in Do’s and Don’ts of weight loss. As we all know talking about something and giving advice is very easy, but to convert theory into action is very difficult. Yes, I am guilty of preaching water and drinking wine.  It’s not like I haven’t made any progress, indeed there are some visible changes. One of the biggest problems I am facing is staying focused and motivated. It’s like 5 steps forward and 10 steps in wrong direction.

There are so many diet programs out there, from starving yourself to 24hr of diarrhea. Somehow I am not a great fan of diets. The little Smurf inside my head is telling me, it’s the wrong direction to go. I guess everyone needs to find their own path.

Along with healthy eating habits and regular exercise, I wanted to achieve my goal. I love Pilates and EMS training. I don’t want to brag, but I have the BEST trainers in town. These young, vibrant ladies are just awesome (Oh well, I will blog about them another time). Unfortunately I decided to take a break.  Remember 5 steps ahead and 10 backwards.

2 things I love the most are bags and sunglasses. So I said to myself, if I manage to have a healthy life style and reach my target weight, I will present myself a Louis Vuitton and a trip to New York or Dubai on my Birthday (btw. It’s on 30th Nov).

Falling back and losing motivation, are very common problems, and I am sure there are other people fighting the same issues. I want to address this blog to them, come and join me on my journey to a better and healthier life style.

Until next time, me signing off – Keep calm and stay healthy 😉

Day 2 – Take Control of Your Title and Tagline

Today’s assignment requires me to edit my Title and Tagline. Saw the mail today morning on my way to work. Till now I didn’t even know about Title and Tagline, funny isn’t it? My first thought was, that I have to change the title of my previous blogpost.

Even though I had a hectic morning at work, some parts of my brain was engaged to find the perfect Tagline and Title. Blogging is new to me and I’ve absolutely no idea in which direction to go. Right now I want to use this platform to share my thoughts and ideas. One day I might blog about traveling or provide information about weight loss and healthy living style. In other words I haven’t defined my target audience yet, so I will keep the tagline blank for a while.

I am choosing Viennese Tandoor Schnitzel as my Title, because these 3 words describe my current situation very well – total confusion 🙂