Thursday, October 19, 2017

Yoga course in digital age

Hi all. After long time. I am writing a post. This time, I want to talk about yoga course on MOOC platform offered on edx. The course is free with fee of 49 USD in case you want to have certificate.

 I am excited to do this course. I have been a practitioner of yoga for several years but discontinued and became irregular. Now in mid 50s I realise what a mistake I did. The main impact the digital gadgets had on me is serious neck and back problems which I could have avoided by continuing yoga. I am also excited I may learn some theory too. 

Interestingly, stand up comedian Alex is a yoga teacher and vouches for yoga. 

I recommend yoga and this course.

Course details are pasted here.

About Yoga MOOC

Hosted by edX – an open online platform with over 10 million registered learners created by Harvard and MIT, Yoga MOOC: The Science and Practice of Yoga is a free six-week online course designed to help participants to find balance in today’s chaotic digital world. We explore the ancient practice of yoga through the lens of modern day science, focusing on practical applications. Learners will discover how to practice yoga on the mat as well as how yoga can be used in everyday life. No previous yoga experience is needed and the course is tailored to those who want to learn the basics of postures, as well as experienced practitioners or instructors looking to deepen their practice.

Digital technologies, such as phones, tablets, and computers, are permanently integrated into our daily lives. We spend so much time on these devices that we are often unaware of how they impact us emotionally and physically. Researchers from the Learning Innovation and Networked Knowledge (LINK) Research Lab at the University of Texas at Arlington are partnering with the Free Life People™ School of Yoga have come together to introduce the science behind mind-body practice as well as ways to balance our digital lives with self-care and wellness.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Risk aversion or management? Which is better?

There were three fish Tom, Sam and Joe living in a tank. During summer they faced risk of tank drying up and easily getting caught by fishermen.  A month before, Tom, the foreseer, cautioned his friends about the risk and suggested migrating to other waterbody to safety.

Sam, the smart, took it lightly and expressed confidence that somehow they can manage when the risk happens.

Joe, the dumb, took it too lightly.

The imminent danger of tank drying up came when very little water was left. By then Tom migrated. When fishermen came fishing, Sam smartly dived and escaped from the net. Joe was caught and could not  manage the risk. 

Me s s a g e: be t t e r  be  p r e p a r e d  for  t h e  r i s k. avoid if  p o s s i b l e.  m a n ag e   or  c o p e  w i t h  at l e a s t.  n e v e r   t a k e it   l i g h t.

S a m

J o e

Poor Joe

Friday, May 16, 2014

BJP's win is a management lesson from Mr.Modi

The expected happened in 2014 Elections. BJP won with huge majority that would  lead to formation of stable government after painful spells of coalition governments. The victory was not just by chance. It was hard earned. Since Mr.Modi emerged as PM candidate BJP after several hurdles from within and outside the party circles, a strategy was put in place and was implemented silently without much hungama. Announcing PM candidate in advance itself is a good piece of strategy where one person was made in-charge  of the party's prospects with clear incentives known to the leader. The leader took up the challenging role and started forming his team steering clear of forces opposing him from within.  The forces working from outside, he simply ignored except giving befitting replies through his campaign speeches. He identified the states where the victory is crucial for the country level performance. Uttar Pradesh is such state which can make or mar the party's fortunes. In states where the party machinery is capable he let them do their job. He placed his man, Amit Shah, in UP where his party cadres lost morale over time.  He contested from Varanasi which sent positive vibes to UP people and also prospects for other candidates through spillover effects. He toured all states and did very well in states where BJP did not have any traditional hold at all. Assam, Tamilnadu are examples. He had alliances with local parties in states like (seema) Andhra Pradesh where his party does not have any hold.
1.identify a leader and let him know what he gets on his success and let him freedom to perform
2. Leader should chalk out strategies and implement by identifying right people in right places
3.Ignore and push aside people who cannot help you achieve the goal
4. have friends where you cannot go alone
5. do not spare efforts to win in areas just because  you are not sure.
6. communicate. communicate and communicate.
Once the results are out, in he gave a message to people that 'good days are ahead'  this is refreshing and positive compared to the ones we heard over 10 years that 'we are running through tough times. Be prepared to sacrifice'.
Hope we get good governance under him. 

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Live a cadre ahead!

Often we find people around us, especially in our work place, who give less than their best. We always feel we are exceptions though we too are part of the same club. Difference may be one of degree. Still often, we shun taking responsibility that our cadre in the hierarchy demands. I often saw people in a given cadre focusing on day to day issues rather than developing a broader perspective. That sense of big picture that helps us join dots we come across to make the big picture. People occupy leadership positions, but act as managers. Thus, they lose capacity to build teams, nurture/groom future leaders, lead teams to draw that big picture.
Leadership need not mean great things. Robin Sharma, the author of Monk Who Sold his Ferrari fame, in his little black book that is offered free narrated a small experience. He goes to a chain luggage store to get his handle of his bag fixed. He gets the service and within a few days of his hard travelling, the handle gives in again. This time he approached the outlet of the store in another part of the globe.  He was apprehensive that the store attendant would ask for producing previous bill failing which they will charge for the fresh repair, etc etc. Surprisingly, the attendant appologised   for the inconvenience and accepted the bag for repair. The icing is that she declared that the repair will be free of charge.  What a relief for nor being penalised for not keeping the receipts, not being charged again, trusting the customer. Sharma says this is the leadership. Imagine the store attendant fretting and fuming on you and showing you how unimportant you are for his business, asking you to come some other time since he has to close the store in another 5 minutes, so on.

We too must have come across such leaders who must have made our life damn easy and simple. I had several experiences with such people.  Hats off to them and thanks for making my life easy. A couple of my experiences, i will write about some other time.
According to me leadership is also living up to at least one cadre above you. If you are second in command and some one approaches you to do his work, act as if you are the first in command. This trains you to fit in the next cadre easily once you reach there. Hiding behind the excuse that the concerned man is not there and shooing away your clients or those in need of your help is easy and trouble free. But, this way you can never stand out among the crowd.   Be ready to take responsibility whenever needed.  Willingly accept people and address their needs. Make them visit your office least number of times.  Your assistant taking leave should not make them make additional rounds. Make their life simple, to put it straight. Live a cadre ahead! Make a difference.

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Gettysburg Address - Abraham Lincoln: The power of Brevity

Some communicate very well. One of the qualities of best communication is brevity and simplicity. We often speak  assuming total interest from the audience.  Often, the audience may just tolerate us out of courtesy and/or our superior position in hierarchy, social or official. Lincoln’s now immortal speech is an excellent example of how a good speech can be!  enjoy .. a lesson in communication.
best wishes
The speech referred to above was delivered on 19 November 1863 at the dedication of the Soldiers' National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, four and a half months after the Union armies defeated those of the Confederacy at the Battle of Gettysburg. This was one of the best speeches in the history of America. That day the first speaker was the much famed speaker, Edward Everett, who spoke to the crowd for two hours. Abraham Lincoln followed with his now immortal Gettysburg Address. The next day, Everett wrote to Lincoln: “Permit me also to express my great admiration of the thoughts expressed by you, with such eloquent simplicity & appropriateness, at the consecration of the Cemetery. I should be glad, if I could flatter myself that I came as near to the central idea of the occasion, in two hours, as you did in two minutes.”
The text:
Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting-place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead who struggled here have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living rather to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain, that this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth.
The original manuscript can be seen here and were preserved, the details of which can be seen from the URL quoted at the end.


Saturday, February 15, 2014

Plant trees and save earth : Forests and Climate Change

Hi friends
I am doing Wold Bank MOOC course on Turn Down the heat: Why a 4 degree world should be avoided?

This page is created to display my final project for other course participants and evaluators.
Pl see and give your suggestions.
In the artifact given here, I tried to show that forest cover acts as umbrella to mother earth to protect from CO2.  Mother earth can happily smile once forests take care of the emissions and carbon sequestration.  Plant trees and save earth from climate change.
Forests have profound impact on climate change and climate change affects in turn forest cover.  However, annual deforestation is estimated to release CO2 in more qualtity than annual emissions from transport system.  Forests act as carbon sinks and help in absorbing CO2 in large quantities due to photosynthesis.  Also, forest cover gives shade that reduce soil temperature.  The continued existence of forests is important to prevent vicious cycle of rising temperatures –melting ice cap –release of GHG-which leads to temperature rise. 
As global warming proceeds the forest ecosystems have to move to more suitable locations as the existing locations become less suitable.  It is estimated that with increased global temperatures by 3 degree by 2100, the forest ecosystemes are likely to shift 500 km towards poles and 500 m to higher alitiudes.    Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concluded that suitable climate are projected to shift in future and many tree species will not be able to change their geographic distribution fast enough to keep up with such shifts.  Often due to limited capability for the dispersal of seeds of several tree species, the composition of the forest ecosytems is likely to change.
Trees or lack of them, hence, makes a difference to our mother earth. Increased forest cover, thus, helps reduce mitigate global warming effects by acting as carbon sinks and reducing CO2 emissions that would otherwise occur from degradation or deforestation.