After reading the book, “Who moved my cheese” written by Dr. Spencer Johnson, I can strongly say that it is a must read book in life. The book contains a very interesting story with four characters in it, “Sniffy and Scurry (the mice) and Hem and Haw (Tiny people). They all used to live in a “Maze” which represents our work place, society, home, culture and so on. The characters in the book represent different mentality / behavior / habits of different people. It also portraits different ways in which people deal with the change occurs in various aspects of their lives at the regular interval of time. “Cheese” can be defined in your own way such as, “Money, fame, success, health, family, own house or any other materialistic thing. “Move With The Cheese” represents the key learning of the book. It is telling us to analyze the situation, anticipate the future changes, be mentally ready for the same, proactively adapt with them as soon as possible and enjoy moving with them. If we are able to follow these things, change will never be able to surprise us and we can embrace the change. For most of the people “change” is scary because of a lot of uncertainty and fear of security which is mentioned in the book with the use of metaphor “darkness”. This book can inspire you to keep moving on to find your “Cheese”. However, it also says that some fear must be respected in order to keep ourselves safe from real danger. But our fear should not lead or empower our decisions in life. “What would you do, if you weren’t afraid?”, is my key take away from this book. I think this is one of the biggest learnings of my life and a very good way to start leaving many empty cheese stations of my life. (To understand “what is cheese station, you will have to read the book). I think I have played all the story characters at some points in my life. But I admit, I was more of a “Hem” in a major part of my life and the same has been observed by me for others. But I will shift from “Hem to Haw” (Confused Again? – Now what is this? – Read the book.). Thank you for the wonderful opportunity of learning.
“In Economics The Majority Is Always Wrong” – John Kenneth Galbraith
“Good Economics for Hard Times” is an eye-opener in a true sense as it compels us to think whether the hardcore principles of Economics studied by the Commerce students in their high school is actually true or not? It touches major and also the contagious issues of our time from migration to trade. It beautifully depicts the real-life scenario of how economics works in our day to day life and how the demography is affected by it. It also tells us the reasons behind how certain policies and programs are implemented and the role of government and the authorities in the decision-making process. Moreover, it also talks about the role of business houses and corporates in certain debatable points.
The book exemplifies the major challenges from the lack of trust in Economists to the application of standard economic principles like demand and supply and along with that, it talks about issues which are applicable everywhere in the world and not just to a country specifically. As we all know that every country and every locality’s economic problem varies but the way it has been described in the book, gives it a universal appeal and everyone can relate to it.
Adding on to that, one problem which I think has a local, as well as national presence, is the issue of migration which can be easily addressed through the logic and examples given in this book. On a local level, we all know that Surat is considered to be a hub of industries ranging from textile to diamonds and thousands of people from the adjacent states of Maharashtra, Rajasthan and all the way from Odisha come here for jobs and have settled here too. Though the local Gujarati community is very tolerant and accepting towards them but the politicians and people with vested interests always think that they are taking away the jobs of the locals and are a burden on the resources or responsible for increased crime. Furthermore on the national level too, these apprehensions are still there when it came to migrants from other countries like Rohingya Muslims or persecuted Hindus or people from other religions covered under the CAA act. If you read the book you will know that the majority of problems perceived by people about migrants and unchecked influx of people cannot be that big and are unfounded. On the contrary it can be a blessing in disguise as these migrants bring spending power with them and add in the economic development by increasing demand. They could also be entrepreneurs and can add to the GDP in the long run.
In a nutshell the book talks about practical problems and their practical solutions and we have to be open-minded to understand the concepts given as it also compels us to think critically about the economic issues raised and to take a wise decision devoid of our own ideology or biases.
Authors: by Stephen C. Lundin, Ph.D. Harry Paul, and John Cristensen.
The title of the book reflects the atmosphere, work culture of the famous Pike Place Fishmarket. When a fish market comes into our mind it relates to the place which is fleshy, wet, and stinky where hardly one could wish to go. But the Pike Place Fishmarket is the place that is truly inspired and motivational which brings joy and invites people.
Third Floor- of the First Guarantee Financial, Pike Place Fish Market.
Mary Jane who shifted with his husband and 2 kids to Seattle’s and was living a balanced life, suddenly after the death of her husband everything changed. Being a single mother with the responsibilities and 2 kids accepted the promotion on the third floor of the First Guarantee Finance even after knowing that the floor is called a ‘toxic energy dump’. The struggle that she faced to show her potential and get the given title removed. After losing her hope she reached a place which was a famous Pike Place Fish Market and the environment, work culture made her think deeply.
The key four ingredients which Lonnie helped her to recognize and get that implemented in her team.
The four ingredients:
1) Choose your attitude- We can choose our attitude we can bring to our work. There is always a choice about the way you do your work, even if there is not a choice about the work itself.
2) Play- play while you work that brings more interest to gear up and involve in the work assigned.
3) Make their day- We look for as many ways as we can to create great memories. And we create great memories whenever we make someone’s day
4) Be Present- Listen to all small things and acknowledge and respond, ensure that you are listening and there to help them out. By presenting these four ingredients in front of the team and further dividing the team members into 4 teams and asking them to reflect in front of the entire team. Eventually, she succeeded, it took her 1 year to remove the title ‘and now the third floor is the best place to work with no title ‘toxic energy dump’. Now the third floor in First Guarantee Finance is the best place and the new problem is that everyone wants to work there.
IMO- Attitude is the key factor that plays a major role in life. Our attitude drives us for the entire day. How to keep your surrounding environment truly lies on the individual. Few words of appreciation to anyone around will make their day. The joy you will see on that person’s face will satisfy you and you will automatically notice a smile on your face. Present yourself when someone is around and has come to seek help or share the problems.
The ‘Fish’ is a very interesting book written by Stephen C. Lundin, Harry Paul, and John Christensen. It is based on how you are managing your professional and personal responsibilities effectively.
The book has many insights into how you can bring happiness to your work. It is all about how you carry your energy, creativity, enthusiasm, and positives to your workplace. The author has given the name of this book ‘FISH’ because the fish market is an example of how the work environment should be..!
Mary is the lead character of this book, she faced tragedy in her life at an early age, her husband passed away and she was having 2 kids as well. When she was asked to be promoted to the third floor she wasn’t comfortable just because of her personal life responsibilities she had to accept the challenge. She gathered the courage to move ahead and work. When she started working she wasn’t happy with the way the team was working and was demotivated also. Somehow when she went to the fish market she was amazed observing the energy, positivity, and joyfulness around. She met lonis and learned a lot from her about how to love what you do. And how you can only bring change to your workplace. Slowly she started implementing the learning by changing her attitude towards her workplace, she started believing in herself.
For me, the main learning from this book is the Attitude that one needs to carry in professional and personal life as well, “Your determination can only sail your boat”.
FISH-A self help and motivational book written by Stephen S Lundin, Hary Paul and John Christensen.
This FISH is for everyone; Vegetarian, Non vegetarian, Mexican, South Asian, Italians, East Indian..anyone. Basically for all those people who wish to have a cheerfull, efficient and high energy workplace. The so called “Fish Philosophy” is all about making your work place brighter and enjoyable. The name of the book is inspired from the world famous “Pike Palace Fish Market”, in Seattle, where employees use these strategies to make their workplace a happier one inspite of being a smelly, sloppy and a wet place.
The Fish Philosophy has 4 main ingredients and these are well described and explained through a story in this book. Mary Jane (Key character), who is recently widowed and lives with her two children in Seattle, works in a firm called “First Guarantee”. She is considered as a top manager and a go to co-worker. Her team performs well and is always appreciated by all. The situation soon changes when she is offered a raise and a promotion to lead a team who is generally refer to as “Toxic Energy Dump”. In her initial days with this team, she observes, identifies and realize why this team holds such impression and why it is called “Zombie”. Her energy levels, enthusiasm and confidence drops leading this team for a week or so. She soon realizes that something has to be done in this case or else it will impact her life heavily. While tensed, hungry and frustrated with her situation, she meets Lonnie (Second main character) on her way to lunch., who is a fishmonger at the world’s famous Pike Palace Fish Market. This meeting soon changes her life. Her perspective, her energy levels and most importantly her willingness to do anything has increased. She soon finds her lost confidence and ideas to turn her team into the most lively and efficient team. Lonnie introduces her to “4 MANTRAS” to make the workplace the most enjoyable thing in the world.
These 4 Mantras are, Choose your Attitude, Play, Make Their Day and Be Present.
To choose the right attitude or rather the required attitude for any field of life is our responsibility. Nobody can change/hurt you until you give them the power to change you. The remote of your life has to be in your own hands, as simple as that (it may sound simple but it take tons of courage to make it right). Not everyone is blessed to make their passion as their work, but we are all free and independent to make the work playful and enjoyable. Working people (it includes people holding jobs, running business, Women running the house) spent their huge amount of time at work, Its all up to them to make their work place a better one; if you have the right or rather required attitude, shift hours just becomes playful. This holds true not only to your works place but also in your personal or social life. The better or happy or positive attitude you have towards life, the better are the results. Positive attitude attracts other people and this will help you include other people, be an empathetic listener and do your best to make their day and be present for them.
Kehte hai na, khushiya baatne se badhti hai. Agar hum apne priyajano ko apni khushi mein shamil nahi kar sakte to wo khushi hi kya? So share and spread the knowledge, love, happiness and be a part of an inclusive society.
We introspected our fear and learnt about different types of fear and categorized our fear accordingly.
Life is a roller coaster. It is full of ups and downs. Many times we are forced to go through certain situations we fear the most, and from which we can’t escape. It takes acceptance, courage and confidence to face these tough times and handle the situations more calmly. It is necessary to fight back and be victorious in the end.
The life class also gave an opportunity to think of the underlining fear which gives birth to other fears. This awareness would help to deal with the underlining fear thereby helping in overcoming the secondary ones as well.
The session was well planned and executed.
The happiness project by Gretchen Rubin, the author shares the smaller changes within her confines of ordinary life for being happier. She addresses each month of a year a theme like- energy vitality, marriage , work , parenthood ,etc. ‘She acted the way she wanted to feel’- just by staying determinant to her resolutions or by working on some of her manageable concrete things that could boost her happiness, making her happier and not just happy. That’s one of her commandments out of 12 – “Act the way I want to feel”, which has kindled me and I wish to apply it in my daily routine. Bringing in smaller changes to our daily routine surely brings the sense of achievements which leads to the feeling of contented. The examples of happiness projects shared in the book are so subtle, not at all complex, its’ like a checklist- done, done, done….
“My happiness project” is to bring alignment of the following tasks in my evening schedule –
Appropriate dinner time
There are yet other interesting themes in the book like parent hood , friends ,etc. , which I ruminate about and I am sure reading it further and discussions on them will give some clarity.