Being Good

December 13th, 2017 Comments off

Every one thinks they are good. Even I used to think so. And people are not in telling where we are wrong. If we every did wrong to someone, most probably they get hurt, and they try to keep distance from us.

Rarely we come across people who actually like to tell us what we did wrong. I am lucky to have such friends. They told what I did wrong to them and others.

It is never late to say sorry. If you know something wrong I did, let me know and help me fix myself.Β  You will get a guaranteed gift card worth more than your effort in making me realize.

Categories: Food for thought Tags:

Upgrading self

November 24th, 2017 Comments off

Recently I have been on a trip to Mexio and US. I had some unique experiences with people on this trip. Those experiences are nothing specific to those places. But this trip gave me an opportunity to see people as they are.

During those 3 months and after that, I have been working on upgrading my software. I am questioning every aspect of my self and see if I am doing things in my best interest. I am trying to do things ‘right’ way.

On a recent discussion with a friend who questioned “what is right and what is wrong? is it not different from each perspective?” I said “We can tell that some one did wrong, when we can logically prove that they did not act according to their best interest.” So in theory we can always say some one is wrong provided we already know what their best interest is.

On this journey to upgrading self, I asked people around me for things they see wrong or things that needs improvement. To my amazement, some how people have very simple expectations. What ever they told me to change, I was able to do without even 1% loss to my time and effort. It significantly improved my interpersonal communication and relations. People used to treat me as hostile. Now I see that they don’t.

This upgrade is not finished yet, but I already feel like I am a much better shape now. If you are reading this do me a favor. Send me top 5 things you want me to change in me and why.

Practical wisdom: How to learn and teach

September 21st, 2017 Comments off

I believe that best way to learn wisdom is by reflecting on our own acts. And an outsider can help you reflect better. By talking about things and trying to learn from others experiences is a faster way to get wisdom.

I want to be the person who can help others reflect on themselves. I want to develop that skill.

As a starting, I offer free service for anyone who needs help in “Being Happy”. I offer one hour 8PM to 9PM(IST) on Whatsapp(Call or Text). Identity of my customers will be private. But their problems and situations will be used as examples for others. If more people need help, I will start charging for that time as I have limited time.

I consider my self to be a happy person, and I think I can help many people out there. So feel free to use this service when ever you need.

Categories: General, Idea Tags:

Indian Politics & Corruption and possible solution

August 23rd, 2017 Comments off

I was fortunate to have spent 14hrs with economist Atanu Dey on our journey to watch Great Solar Eclipse 2017. I got some interesting stories about India. Most of those stories are what we already hear from our known contacts. I will generalize some of them as follows.

Story 1: My friend has a transport company. He tells me that in order to get profit they have to transport some 40 tons per trip but the maximum they are allowed will be 25tons. So how do they do it? They just pay around 40k per month per each vehicle and no one will ever catch them and fine them.

Story 2: I wanted to travel from Pune to Mumbai. I go to that taxi stand and many people will be calling you to offer for the taxi. Once I bargained the trip for 1400 and get into one taxi. It happens that the one I bargained is not the driver. He is some middle man. He pays 1000 to the driver and keeps 400. We get to know that it takes around 500 for the gas/petrol and the driver can get around 500 for the trip. So why he paid 400 for the other person?

We know many of those corruption stories. After we listen to them we all used to feel that, those people are corrupt. Actually I think they have to do what they are doing in order to stay in job or to pay off the bribe they had to pay for getting the job. Every penny collected from the last man is split and distributed back to the top. Normal Citizen -> Police Constable -> SI -> SP -> DIG -> Home Minister -> Chief Minister -> Party President

We may not believe that every one in the system are corrupt. But if you apply basic economics we can easily derive these. Why will some govt employees agree to stay in jobs which does not fetch any bribes while some of their colleagues are making lot of money in bribes?

They don’t. The one who got the opportunity got it after paying lot of hefty bribe himself to be in that position. And that so on. That economic principle applies to every cycle there. Even the top people have to do it because it costs that much to get elected to power.

So because we make it so hard for a person without money to get elected, they need money and they have to recover it back.

I am in US now. So how is system in US works? in US there is no such corruption at the lowest level. It may be at the lobbyist levels and it is all public. No one is taking bribes here. So that is the difference?

The single biggest difference I find is that you don’t need permission to do most of the things here. For example if you want to build a house, there will be some regulations. But there is no permission required. You just follow those regulations and build what ever you want. Some one will come and will check it and give his approval. And even if he/she does not approve, they can not do anything. They can just report it back, and you can fight it in the court. They have to show that you did things against the regulations. Till then nothing happens. You keep doing your business.

I think removing all permission system in India and replace them with regulations is the best solution to reduce corruption. To keep the system running, they have to enhance the courts and need to speedup the justice system. So they will do it. And I think that is the solution.

I want a website where there will be all kinds of these problems(corruption stories) listed, and we explore the possible solutions to each of them. If any one is interested in such a site or if such a site already exists let me know.

Categories: Food for thought, Politics, Society Tags:

Principles, rules and ethics

August 12th, 2017 Comments off

We all want to have good principles or ethics in our life. Some of us have not even thought anything specific on what these principles are and what those ethics we want to follow. It is okey, just because we have not defined them in some notebook does not mean we don’t have them.

One thing that I always believed and I am sure that most will agree that there is no absolute in this world. (Excluding maths and science I mean). You can not say something is absolutely good and something is absolutely bad. Most of the important stuff in this world does not have a proper scale to measure with. For example love, friendship, good, happiness, right or wrong.

But we do measure every day. Even in those things without the scale. Because even though we dont have a scale, most of the times we know where we are on the scale, and where something else is. Is it on the black side or the white side. Here Black and White are just example colors on the gray scale. May be White is divine love and Black is satan or something like that. I am just telling good and bad as an example here. But this same gray scale applies to so many things in our life.

One of the common mistake that I observed people doing is that they forget that it is gray scale without any markings. Some times we do draw line on this scale, but that is only to tell your limits. Those lines are not the units of measurements. Another common mistakes people do is that they think this gray scale does not even exist and some how their brain comes up with YES or NO answers to situations in which we would normally require to check where on this gray scale things fall and which is on left or right of our point of interest and why.

One recent example for this is, a discussion with a friend in Mexico. He is Eric. He has 2 dogs, and the discussion was where he should keep them when he goes to Europe for his trip. I asked simple question like how much would you be willing to pay for some one to take care of the dogs. To my surprise he said he wont pay anything. If you know me well enough you can guess what I might be thinking immediately. It actually means that those dogs are worthless to him. Well that is not the case actually. He loves those dogs. The reason he said he wont pay anything is because he has some friends who can give him favor to taking care of them. I have tried so much time in arguing and trying to make him say a number. He treats these favors from friends are un measurable and never says a number.

But we all know that reality does not work like that. Even though they are not measurable directly, there is always some thing to refer and there is always some number we can assign to it. That value may keep changing from time to time, but there will be a number. Because that if we have a friend who always asks for favors and never does anything to you, how long will he or she remain to be your friend? Not long, because our brain keeps measuring things. And we make the decision some day. But most rational way I see in those situations is, don’t wait for your brain to go into some kind of unknown chemical reaction and tell YES or NO. Make the measurement as and when you can, and realize the limits in which you want to be, and make the decision when limits are crossed. Don’t get angry or happy for these things. We can remove emotions out of our decisions if we can put numbers to stuff.

[I know that I started with a un measurable items and how telling about to put a number to things, well, sorry it is complicated].

One more important stuff I want to say is about Principles. I used to think I am a principled man. I think mine are good compared to say 99% of people. (all from my own perspective anyway). And I always wanted to act based on those principles no matter what the situation is. I think from 2001 to 2014 I am in this state I think. But things started to change much more in last 3 years. I used to hold firm beliefs. I will do some things, I wont do some things, some things are good and some things are bad etc.

But now I am more flexible. I realize that every thing is based on perception and I don’t make quick judgement on people or situations. If some one asks like ‘is X good to do?’ Previously it used to be YES, or NO. Now it is ‘Compared to what?’. I do still make the judgement, but only in comparison with other things.

I was discussing about one such principle with a friend recently. It goes something like this. “If friends A, B independently tells X some things, then X will never reveal those details to the other persons even if A is telling about B and B is telling about A”. I think it is very common principle that most of us follow. Right?

Actually it is not a principle, it is what we do without even thinking. We always talk about bad things about someone who is not present there. Change people, topics change to bad things about people who are not there. You can all imagine how bad these things are. We are all afraid of telling hard truths or our views to others, if we think it will hurt them. But does that mean we don’t hold that views? No. We do hold it, we just don’t tell it directly. And we need a way to let them out, so we all let them out when they are not in the room.

You might say that this above example is different than the principle I just mentioned. But I dont agree. What if the information that is shared is about some bad things about the other person? Where do you draw the line to apply the principle?

You might say that it is “Trust”. When some one trusts you, you have to protect that trust. Actually we can generalize it like this…..

If I say that I will do X, then no matter what I will do X. Just that that X happened to be “keep the secrets“. Right?

It is a very solid principle if you see. I used to believe in it, and I always thought I need to follow it. Fortunately I think I am little wiser now. And I believe this is a very bad principle. (bad in relative terms… don’t forget the gray scale ever).

What is the principle that I follow now?

What ever I am going to do in future is going to be what I told or at least better than that, and what is better depends on my own judgement at the time of making that judgement.

If you see, it just looks like “I will do what ever I want”. There is no absolute dependability on a person with such a principle. You never really know what I am going to do. How to trust a man like that?

Well, you still can trust me. But that trust is based on your trust on my ability to make proper judgements in future. If you think I will make better decisions in future, then make your calls on that. If you think I might make silly and stupid decisions in future, them use that info.

In reality there is no such thing as absolute secret. We always are ready to reveal secrets of others. But only if needed. Sometimes if is more valuable to keep the secret than your life. For example lets assume that you know that North Korea is going to launch nuclear missiles and it is told to you by a your trusted friend. Xe asked you to keep that as a secret. As if it comes out his life will be in danger. But a nuclear missile will kill 10000s, and you have to make a call if 1000s are more important or your friends trust or his life is more important.

If you are reading this blog, I hope you will tell that information to proper authority and let your friend die in order to protect 1000s. [If you don’t fuck of from this site.]

Now, if you see you can not trust most rational people. They will always tell your secrets, if there is a need. And that decision is made by them based on the situations. That is what exactly is what I said my principle is. I will do what I want to do.

The friend said that she choose that principle based on her experience. When ever she moved information from one side to another, she noticed that those A,B are actually became far from each other. Sounds good right? If you see from her decision, she wants them to remain close. That should be the expectation anyway.

But once you have made such principle and you got to know some information from A that if you do not share to B it is going to blow the relation between A and B. Now will you stick with your principle or you will stick with your expectation of your outcome of choosing that principle in first place?

I am not arguing about that one principle here. I am arguing about creating principles that make you act in ways that will defeat the purpose of the principles. Don’t limit yourself and future actions by the knowledge of the past. Let yourself evolve that is the only way forward. Just protect yourself from going down the ladder of wisdom.

Actually similar situation came with my investor in Vimukti. At one time, he said “you said you will do so and so, but now you are doing some thing else”. And to that I replied “Don’t depend on what I said I will do. If what I said does not make sense to do, I wont do”. Words might be different, but meaning is same. Ofcourse he hates me for saying that, and I don’t think he will ever forget that :-), and I am okey with that. I don’t want to create a false image about me. Let them know who I really am, good or bad what ever they think I am.

There is a English movie, in which a journalist goes to jail to protect the source of information. In that case the source is a small child. I liked that movie. Now thinking about topic, I really wonder what is she trying to protect.

Even journalists have to make decisions. Just presenting facts is not enough. They have to decide what is good and what is not.

Some times there are not just A, B. There might be so many people involved. Your decisions effects lives.

Categories: Food for thought Tags:

The writer I liked, whose stories I did not read

April 21st, 2017 Comments off

I was reading a very good article on James Altucher blog. He wrote about why people hate their jobs. It is a very good article that gives you his perspective on the that topic. I believe it syncs with many people I have seen. It did sync with my view.

I was reading the comments on that post, and they are interesting too. People expressing how it related to them, and what they used to think.

From there I found a book title, and about an author. He is Ray Bradbury. Those of you who want to be writers I recommend reading some of this books. I did not read actually, and not sure if I will ever read. But I found two videos of him on You Tube. After watching I just felt, “wow, if at all I am a writer that is how I want to be”.

I instantly fell in love with that person. Here are those videos for you.

 

 

I feel like it is how every one should be. Not just writers. Every person should be true to themselves. I don’t really know what it means to be ‘true to themselves’. But there is some kind of authenticity in his personality. I could not pin point it exactly. But it is there. And I am referring to that. I hope I do have it, and I will try to have.

 

Categories: Food for thought, General Tags:

Principles: Basic and Management principles

April 18th, 2017 Comments off

Just now finished reading RayDalio’s Principles

I wish I read it couple of year back. But anyway it is never late to learn a lesson. Ray is publishing a book on this this year. But for those who don’t want to wait till then follow the above link to get the draft version of it. I found it on internet. If any one has access to more recent version please let me know.

If at all I start any company in future, it will be operating on these principles. IfΒ  I join some company, I would like to see at least some of these principles in that organization.

I recommend this for anyone who is running a company or managing a team. And his basic principles apply to every one else who wants to succeed in life.

Categories: General Tags:

What kind of place I want to work at?

April 9th, 2017 Comments off

As my position at PurpleTalk as VP of Technology has ended, I got the opportunity to think what kind of place I want to work at. It is not an easy question for most of the people. We normally don’t think of it too much. When we join a new job, we see what the company is doing, if it fits our career path, then join else don’t join. That is how we normally decide.

As I have not worked in any company other than my own for major part of my professional life, I thought I am flexible and I can adjust. In fact I did. I did adjust a lot. But does adjusting means compromising your principles? I don’t think so. So I tried not to compromise on them, with say about 60% success rate.

Last month I was listening to a great podcast of Naval Ravikant and he said some thing related to honesty.

“I think honesty is a core, core, core value. To give you examples of what I mean by honesty is I want to be able to just be me. I never want to be in an environment or around people where I have to watch what I say.”

I absolutely recommend his podcast for any one who reads my blog. There will be some thing to learn for sure.

Immediately when I heard it, it went straight into my head. I thought about it and immediately decided that I need to act on it very soon. When you can not be what you are, and you are forced to act, is that worth it? I am sure you all agree that it is not.

But the question is we all do that every day. We all go to jobs, and at least some part of our job, we do act. We dont tell what we think, and we tell what other people like to hear, and we get uncomfortable(or get habituated) and come back. At the end of the day we get our salary, and we feel happy about it.

So how much of acting is worth. For most of us life is not a path of roses. We can not choose all our places of working, we all have to make compromises. If we want money, we need to settle of less than ideal working conditions. If some one else is paying, you got to do what they say. I understand it completely and agree with it.

But the major question remains, how much acting should we tolerate? Well, that depends on how lucky you are, and what your requirements are. Some how I got this question after 15 to 16 years of my professional life. I did not do acting while I am my own boss. And tried to do same even with my investors. I did make them agree too. But it is better to make them angry then cheat them with false hope/belief.

I think now I need to put an end to this acting once for all. And I think I can afford that price. Principles are free to take, but costly to maintain. Depending on where you are on your journey in life, you need to decide if that cost of the principles is good enough to keep or lose.

Thanks to one of my friend who referred me to “Ray Dalio“. Just watch couple of videos ofΒ  his. It is an extra ordinary organization which he runs. BridgeWater is a worlds largest hedge fund with 1500 employees. They operate based on “Radical Truth, and Radical Transparency”. Every meeting in the company is transparent(video recorded) and any one else in the company can see and question any decision and discuss about what is discussed. No one will talk about any person behind their back. So it is the proof that an organization can be built on truth and transparency.

Either I want to build such an organization, or I want to help other companies build it. Because I inherently believe in openness and truthfulness.

To summarize, here are couple of points that I want in my next place of work.

  1. Transparency
  2. Honesty
  3. Meritocracy
  4. More intimate relations with the people I work with
  5. Place where my skills can be put to best use, rather than waste my time in making a power point beautiful which most non-tech persons can do much better than me.
  6. Data driven decision making
  7. Where I can make difference to people’s lives. (Employees, or customers)

 

Categories: Dumb World, Food for thought Tags:

Single Again: How to lose a great wife and still be happy?

March 28th, 2017 Comments off

Lets start from the beginning. First we need to get a good wife. πŸ™‚ I am assuming you know that already. Do you? I don’t think many people who are looking for good partner know this. So for the sake of those here is some things that matter and some that does not matter.

What matters

  • A common language to communicate with.
  • Answer to “What to do” for most of the time.
  • Respect for the individual, even if we don’t like the opinions.
  • A Journey to share. A task or a goal etc.
  • Slight dependency even if it is created just for its sake.
  • Honest communication.
  • And ability to tolerate the honesty.
  • Knowing what to know and what not to know.
  • Trust and submission for first betrayal.

What does not matter

  • Caste, Religion
  • When you wake up and when they wake up
  • What you eat and what they eat
  • How they cook, and how they smell
  • How many times you have sex per month
  • Does she/he like your parents or not.
  • How much she or he earns (after the basic needs).
  • What kind of job she or he does.
  • What gifts, cloths, etc she or he bought for you.

I am telling this from my example. But I have seen them working in many other cases. You pick any point of incompatibility, I will show you exactly another couple perfectly happy even with that incompatibility. But as these number of incompatibilities increases the chances of people crossing those limits decreases.

I am a lucky person. I don’t have good memory. So actually except one or 2 cases I don’t remember any fights I had with my wife. I never stopped talking to her for more than 2 days I guess. And actually I never started a fight myself πŸ™‚ (again you have to take my memory into consideration here). I never mixed two different points/disagreements in one fight. All disagreements are as far as I member about the way I shout :-). No matter what the starting point, it always came down to that. And even thought I tried it, I never actually committed myself to change it.

I never bought her single gift or dress or any ornaments etc. Never in 10 years. I let her use my card for some time initially, but later I think she bought much more for me with her own money. I don’t think we ever talked on phone for more than 10minutes in last 10 years. What ever it was just a quick message in chat.

I did not hide anything from her and nor will I ever do that. From silly crush on girls in my own office to current office. She knows every thing.Β  She used to have some thing private, but I never forced. Not every person is same. Just because you told her everything, expecting her to tell everything is wrong. It does not work that way. You be as you want to be, no matter how others behave. Your behaviors should not change much because of how other behave. If you are trying to act as a mirror then no one will ever know who you really are. They just see their reflection and which is never you.

No one know you more than your partner. If that is not the case, then you should not call them as partners. πŸ™‚ Same here. Well we had enough time 16+ years totally. I think that is good enough time together.

I lose my wife because now we want to enhance our lives even more. We want to follow our dreams and which happened to be in different directions. When I say I lose my wife it only means that title. The person is there, and the way she thinks about me, and the way I think about her is same. You live with your brothers and sisters for say 20 years? In that how many years you are actually aware? may be 15. We are together for 16 years. So she is part of my life as my siblings or even more than them.

I know that not every one thinks similar about marriage and divorce. Because not every one is as wise as me πŸ™‚ But we need to live as we think, not as some one else thinks.

I thank my wife for the 16+ years of journey. Now the roads are little different, but does not matter. We know that we will be there for each other for the rest of our lives.

So how to lose a good wife? 1) Get good wife first 2) Dream too big and let her dream too. 3) Make sure your dreams are little different direction than hers.4) Act on your dreams, don’t just dream.

Note for girls: Just let me reiterate for you. I am single now. πŸ™‚ So I think I have the right to ask you for a lunch or dinner or for a walk. So be prepared. I will call her my wife, until some one else replaces that role. So don’t mind if I don’t use ‘ex wife’.

Categories: Life & Partner Tags:

Meaningful Relations

March 25th, 2017 Comments off

I was talking to a Israeli women yesterday and our conversation went like this.


IW: I’m looking for someone Israeli. I’m a language person, so having a meaningful relationship in any language other than Hebrew would be odd for me. ​

ME: I wish you a good day before your travel. I know you are a language person. Actually that is what really caught my attention. I am trying to learn new languages. May be not spending as much time as I should be. I understand the fact that most of the times we prefer the people who talk in our native language. My native language is Telugu. Even though my English skills are not as good as my Telugu skills, I have found that I can have serious discussions and even talk about internal feelings in that English. I think it is just matter of habit. ​

And regarding the words ‘meaningful relation’. There can be so many interpretations possible for it. But I would choose some thing like this ‘a relation where you would be willing to allocate some time per week to just to be with the other person and do what ever those two people like to do together. May be talk about books, movies, ideas, or learn new stuff etc’. ​
One of the most valuable thing we all have is our time. And by allocating time for some one we are actually telling that they are worth that much. And we value the company the other person. ​
Do we want to spend all our time in life with one person whom we have sex with? I don’t think so. In my view there can be so many meaningful relationships possible at same time. ​
Just sharing my views, I hope you don’t mind. ​
Now actually I wish you actually find your Israeli guy(if you can not let that requirement go), and we can still look forward to the possibility of some other entirely different meaningful relation. πŸ˜€β€‹

IW: Thank you for your thoughtful reply. I too believe that we can have several meaningful relationship. :-)​

ME: Now that you even said sorry to some one whom you don’t know and might never talk again, and clearly could have ignored, why do you think I will let you go with your excuse on that I don’t know Hebrew. Where will I find such a good person. πŸ™‚ just kidding…. Am I? πŸ˜€β€‹
Thank you, your acknowledgement made my day. I can spend rest of my weekend in day dreams. πŸ˜€β€‹

To be frank I am not looking for a person whom I think will make me happy some day in future. I know the fact that happiness depends on us not the other person. I am looking for the experience of life. I was a husband, am a brother, son and engineer, some teaching, some entrepreneurship​, some student etc. These are all different experiences of life. There are infinite possibilities of them. But with our limited time we can experience only some of them. So why to limit our self to even narrow list? For example ‘be XYZ of a beautiful Israeli women’ what ever that XYZ is, does not matter how small or big that is. As long as it adds value(experience) to our life it is worth it. ​

I might sound desperate, actually I am. But not for one particular person or relation, but for a experience filled life. I think it is worth being desperate for. What we don’t have is time. Some experiences are not possible as we grow older. Even though I am aiming for 150 years. πŸ™‚ still not enough. ​


The point here is not about how I am trying to impress this women. It is about “Meaningful Relations”. I have seen this word used by girls when they say in dating sites ‘I am looking for a serious meaningful relation’. Actually what they are talking about is a husband. But when we actually look our lives, all the people we talk to and all the people we like to interact, we see that except one or 2 people rest of all people are not life partners. They are parents, sisters, brothers, relatives, friends, colleagues, class mates, room mates etc.

What we like in each of these people is different. Some times you have a brother you never call, but you have a friend you always talk to. Or you have a relative never seen in life, but when you need they will help you. What we get out of each person actually depends on what our relation with that person. Some times we give that relation a name, but just because you gave it a name all relations with that name are not equal. What Brother or Sister means to you is different than what it means to me. The name of the relation is just a convenience to refer it when we talk. But the relation itself is much more than it.

But what people does not seem to understand is even the relation of Wife or Husband is also same thing. We are habituated to give names to relations and then forget that they are more than names.

Some people you want for having sex with. Some people you want to talk to your dreams. Some people you need to talk to your professional life, or etc etc. We don’t have to start deciding what each person is for to you until you both talk and decide. Some people can play multiple roles in your life. Why do we have to expect everything from single person say wife or husband? We know it does not work, and it is not meaningful.

Our relations are like colors in a color spectrum. Each one is different, unique, and scattered around on that spectrum.

I hope I have given you some thing to think about. If you have some thing to say about these, please reach out. I am happy to talk on these subjects always.

 

Categories: Dumb World, Food for thought Tags: