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34 things I learned from The Last Lecture - Randy Pausch

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Assume that you're on the verge of dying. You've probably a few months to live. You're suffering from some notorious form of cancer wherein you've very less hope of surviving.
And then you think that you've very less time for all the things you wanted to do, for all the things you wanted to say to your loved ones, to your children and to the world.
How would you want your children to remember you? Of what you thought about them? Your feelings for them?
A few days ago I read the book - The last lecture by Randy Pausch. Randy was a professor at Carnegie Melon University and the book and the lecture is about achieving your childhood dreams. But more than that, I found the book as a good resource on parenting.
Here are a few points that I found worth sharing:
1. If I were a painter, I would have painted for them. If I were a musician, I would have composed music. But I am a lecturer. So I lectured.
2. Engineering isn’t about perfect solutions; it’s about doing the …

Rekindling Reading Habit

Off lately, I've rekindled my habit of reading. A habit that I love to pursue and yet couldn't pursue since long due to personal commitments and mostly because of my laziness and mindless social-media browsing - a thing that makes most of us dumb. 
I read two books (considering listening audio books as read): Siddhartha by Hermann HesseScion of Ishvaku by Amish Tripathi I loved reading both the books.
Siddhartha is a sort of philosophical and spiritual novel based on the life of Siddhartha - a person during the time of Gautham Buddha. A book that provides us with lot of spiritual wisdom.
Scion of Ishvaku is the first book of Ram Chandra series and I'm currently reading its second part i.e. Sita: Warrior of Mithila. Both the books are fantasy novels based on the lives of Lord Shri Ram and Sita mata - the two protagonists of Ramayan. 
My experience with listening to audio books - especially novels is not that great. I prefer reading rather than listening. I did experiment e…

On Deep Work, Do Less-Do Better, Planning Your Day, Active Learning, and Overall Well-Being

Past 3-4 days I've been constantly thinking and reading about improving my life - my overall well-being - physical, mental as well as emotional.

I've been reading Cal Newport's blog religiously and scoured over many of his posts and also his book - Deep Work. Also, these days I'm reading many articles on Medium for Self-Improvement.

And Cal has literally hit hard. Whatever he has written in his books and his blog is really impeccable for achieving success on the professional front.

The four things that has caught my attention after reading Cal are:

1. Deep Work: Essentially means to avoid all sorts of distraction - especially mobile phones and social media and work on the task at hand with full intensity. Long hours of deep work is essential in gaining success in today's professional world.

2. Do less, De better: This one is from his book on students - How to be a Straight A Student. He advises students to take moderate courses and excel in them instead of being ov…

Reading Before Bedtime

Yesterday being Sunday, I had a stupendous siesta. And due to that I could not go to sleep early at my regular time. So I started reading a book: Blink by Malcolm Gladwell.

This is the second book of Gladwell that I've started reading. First being Outliers.

The point of this post is the way I felt after reading a few pages of the book. Reading calmed my mind. After reading for an hour of so, my mind was lot more serene. On other days, I had this problem of not getting immediate sleep due to the constant chatter of my mind. But yesterday was totally different. I went to sleep easily and also got up early by half-an-hour than by regular days and still was feeling fresh.

While reading I observed that it relaxed my whole body too. In a way, it felt like meditation - away from all the notification and distraction world. It allowed me to connect with myself.

In a way, reading before bedtime is a good habit to cultivate.

Book: Outliers

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Recently I came across this Amazon company named Audible. Audible sells digital audio books, TV Programs and magazines. To give it a try, as it was free for the first month or so, I downloaded it on my iPhone and was going through the various titles. And then, somehow, I decided to download the audio book: Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell.
Listening to a book is altogether a different experience. And to listen a book on Success and its various factors, requires thorough attention. It's not as easy as listening to songs on your phone.

Anyway, I started listening to the Audio of Outliers. The book was narrated by Gladwell himself. And I must say that I loved his book.
Gladwell is an amazing storyteller and he captivates you with his resourceful topics ranging from hockey players to plane crashes. If you thought that success is all about hardwork; then you're wrong. Success has various factors along with hardwork. It has to do a lot with your upbringing, the place where you're f…

Book: When Breath Becomes Air

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I came across this book while reading Bill Gates blog where he shares the books he has read.

And then I ordered it and read it within 2 days. And I must say, this book left me in tears.

Paul Kalanithi, the writer of the book was a neurosurgeon who was diagnosed with terminal cancer.

I've always enjoyed stories from the medical field, about their training and about the massive work they have to do.

But apart from his medical training and the intricacies of neurosurgery, what catches the readers eye is how Paul tries to find the answer to the question about life - What makes this life worth living? Don’t think I ever spent a minute of any day wondering why I did this work, or whether it was worth it. The call to protect life—and not merely life but another’s identity; it is perhaps not too much to say another’s soul—was obvious in its sacredness. Before operating on a patient’s brain, I realized, I must first understand his mind: his identity, his values, what makes his life worth liv…

Book: The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins

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Just completed reading "The 5 second rule - Transform your Life, Work, and Confidence with Everyday Courage" by Mel Robbins.

I've stopped reading Self Help books since long. It's not that they aren't useful, but I feel that they're all the same. Ever since we had Stephen Covey, Napoleon Hill, Anthony Robbins and the like; every other book on self help are just the same things under different cover.

But this book caught my attention when I'd downloaded Audible on my iPhone and started listening to Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell. This book was recommended by Audible based on my selection of Outliers. I just heard the sample on Audible and found the book to be interesting. And so I purchased the book on Kindle and read it on the Amazon Cloud Reader - don't have the Kindle.

The book is plastered with various posts across different social networks from people who have benefited from the tool i.e. the 5 second rule that Mel suggests.

Mel created…