Are You Anxious About Your Children? 7 Tips for Parents!

It is quite natural to be anxious about your children. Your children are God’s gift to you. So they are precious. And they are the future.

At their young age, it is as if God has entrusted you with the awesome responsibility to raise them up as God-fearing citizens. It is up to you that they look not for words of advice but for a model and an example which they can emulate and put to practice as well.

Here are a few tips that might prove useful.

#1. Celebrate the uniqueness of your child.

It is quite understandable that you want your child to excel and win the first rank if possible every time. At the same time, it is more important to realize that your child is very unique and different in his talent, temperament, attitudes and passion from even his or her brother or sister. Therefore do not fall into the trap of comparing your child with anyone else. That is playing with fire. Remember, a dog is not a lion and a lion is not an eagle nor is an eagle a dolphin. Each has its own unique role to play.

So the first responsibility you have is to simply cherish your child as a unique person.

#2. Appreciate your child even for small things he or she does well.

Often we shout at our children; don’t we? Even though we know we should not vent our frustration or anger resulting from a bad day at our work on our children, we do that. And often we feel sorry later. But the best thing you can do for your child is to praise him and appreciate him for any small thing he does well. The more you do it, genuinely, the more confident your child will become. He will have a greater sense of worth and dignity. Children who lack appreciation at home and feel rejected seek acceptance somewhere else and in teenage years can land up in bad company quickly. Why? Simply because there he or she is accepted.

So shower you children with praise and appreciation at every opportunity you get.

#3. Spend time with your children.

It is a wrong thinking that your child is satisfied with the best electronic gadgets that you buy for him. Honestly, this is absolutely wrong. Buying the most expensive and trendy things for your child might advertise your money power; but it does not satisfy your child’s basic and most important need. That is quality time you spend with them. Remember time flies. And before you know it, and because you were busy building your status in society and empires of your own, your child would have grown up into adulthood. And then it is useless to cry that you could spend much time with them in their young age.

Remember the greatest gift you can give your child is the quality time you spend with him or her.

#4. Listen to your children.

If you don’t listen to your children, even if what they talk is silly and even plain nonsense, the day will come when they will totally shut up. And then you will never know what they think, who their friends are, what are their difficulties at school or college or the mental pressures they undergo because of their studies or a wrong relationship. God has given you two ears so that you will listen more than you talk. It is not bravado to tell your children that you are busy and yell at them to stop talking. Encourage them to speak. Let them open up. Give them the freedom to talk to you about matters that trouble their heart. In this way you show respect to them as well.

If you listen to your children today, tomorrow you will not to have to regret that they are not listening to you.

#5. Take time to understand your child’s passion, talent and ambition.

As parents, we like our children to fit into the society’s mould. So we pressurize them to become doctors when they want to be engineers, we compel them to do civil services when they want to be journalists and so on. Of course, there are times when the wisdom of parents should overrule the wrong choices children make. But know that children excel in what they are passionate about. So as parents try to understand what their skill sets are. Help them to have good hobbies which are creative, involves physical activity and involves teaming up with others if possible. This is far better than giving them a tablet or laptop or expensive mobile and allowing them to chat or play video games on it for hours. And it is often equally dangerous to try to make children do what we were good at or try to realize our unfulfilled dreams through them (there are occasions when it works but mostly it is not worth the try).

If you can help your child realize what his passion and talent is, you have succeeded in putting him on the right track that leads to success.

#6. Do not label your children negatively.

I have often quarreled with parents because they often label their children negatively in front of others. One of their favourite labels is this: “Oh, my child is an introvert.” This is shocking because most of the time this has nothing to do with reality. May be the child is a bit shy. So what? Given the right environment like a change of school or given more time to play team games with friends, he or she will come up fantastically well. The more parents repeat this kind of negative labelling in front of others the child starts believing a lie about himself. And these sinful words or curse words of parents become a self-fulfilling prophecy. The child becomes an introvert.

Never label your children. Put a guard over your mouth so that you resist the temptation to label your child negatively especially in front of others.

#7. Never forget to pray for your children daily.

So many children who went to wayward living during their teenage years have come to back to their parents and to the forgiving love of God because of the prayers of their parents–especially the heartfelt, tearful, prayers of their mothers! When your children go to school or college commit them and especially that day into God’s care. Pray that they will be given wisdom and discernment to face life’s challenges and also study well. Pray that they will not be drawn to evil things, and bad company; for the Bible warns, “”Bad company corrupts good character.”*

Knowing that parents are praying for them is a great encouragement for children and a surety of your love and care for them.

“See that you do not look down on one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven” – Jesus Christ.

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*1 Corinthians 15:33, Bible.
Quote on angels, Matthew 18:10, Bible.
Jesus Christ of Nazareth!
2 Minute Speech for School Children on the Importance of English

7 Steps to Your Goal!

People without goals in life do not accomplish much. Therefore it is important to have worthy goals in life. If your goal in life is related to your passion in life, then you’ll have great enthusiasm as you work towards your goal.

#1. You need to have a clear focus.
The sharper your focus is the greater chance is there for you to achieve your goal. The lives of great men and women teach us that they achieved their goals by having a sharp focus and single-minded aim.

#2. Do not postpone working towards your goal.
Each day and moment is precious. Make sure that you do some little bit each day that will take you nearer your goal. Often goals are achieved by the small efforts taken each day rather than a big effort done on a single day. There is great truth in the saying that “Rome wasn’t built in a day.”

#3. Know your obstacles.
There has never been any easy road to success. Every victory is achieved through “blood, toil, tears and sweat.” So first of all count the cost involved in achieving your goal. Get to know all the factors that can come against you. Then make a realistic plan to overcome each one of them.

#4. Make your goals specific.
If there is lack of clarity in the way you have defined your goals, try to make it as specific and realistic as possible. At times, you may need to narrow down your focus and prioritize the use of your time, talent and resources. Always make sure that there is an immediately doable step as you work towards your goal.

#5. Have a deadline and be accountable to someone.
Many people dream of doing some great thing in life but never get started. One reason is that they do not set a deadline for achieving their goals. It is also important that you have someone in the role of a coach or a mentor to whom you can make yourself accountable. Do a review about progress made along with him or her occasionally.

#6. Perseverance is the key to success.
Perseverance is the secret of success. It means moving towards your goal in spite of every doubt, every failure, every setback and disappointment. When setbacks come, at times it is wise to take a few steps backward and then take a giant leap forward towards your goal! Focus on finishing well. A good beginning is not good enough; greater is the ability to stick on to your purpose and being able to finish what you began to do.

#7. Above all, believe in your goal.
It is amazing how much can be achieved if you just knew and believed the truth that God has invested in you with potential far beyond you have ever dreamed of. When you achieve worthy goals your life blesses others by inspiring them to go for their goals as well. It is important that you have goals that you are motivated to achieve. If you are passionate about it, the chances are extremely high that you will achieve your goals!

Jesus Christ of Nazareth!

7 Skills You Need to Stick with New Year Resolutions

New Year resolutions do not last long. We all know that from past experience. So how to stick with New Year resolutions when they break; that is the big question!

#1. Accept the reality of you being human and not a robot.
There is an element within all of us which tends to err and make mistakes. So before the thrill of the New Year wears out, there is a great possibility of breaking your New Year resolutions. So the first step is to be sure that in spite of your brave determination, you are going to break your resolutions.

yelagiriroad#2. Do not decide to start afresh.
Now what does that mean? It simply means that people fail to achieve success because they think of starting all over again when there is a break in their attempts to stick on with resolutions. What is needed is a change of thinking. Treat failures as red lights you see on traffic signal posts as you journey. You don’t go back to the start of your journey when you see a red light; do you? You just continue when the light becomes green.

#3. Look at what you have accomplished rather than what you left undone.
In spite of your worst failures there will be something in the attempt that you made which can be inspiring. Look at your effort rather than how it failed. There will be people in plenty to point out how you did not do well. That is expected. Why should you also join that crowd? For a change take a look at how you stuck with your resolution the first three days in January. You failed the next 5 days. So what? There are still 3 days you did well. And there will be plenty more days you will do well this year.

#4. Encourage someone.
The truth is that all people need encouragement. Coaches provide more than just skills and they do more than just enforce discipline. They inspire, motivate and challenge people to be the best they can be. Do that for someone. You can do that in your area of expertise. Help someone by going the second mile for him or her. What is the result? You too will be recharged.

#5. Forget the past.
You and I often change the calendar on our walls and welcome the New Year. But we fail to leave the baggage of the past year behind. We bring that too into the New Year. I am not talking about failures; I am talking about your success. It is those who enjoyed success in the past who need to be the most careful. When the world is changing at a fast pace methods employed in the past might not be best to meet the present challenge and opportunity.

#6. Make yourself accountable.
Without good friends, it is difficult to get right advice. It is better if you can have one of your friends to keep track of your progress with New Year resolutions. You can update him or her about your success and failures as well. Your friend will be able to help you have a balanced perspective on issues that tend to pull you down. All of us need a pair of eyes that can look at our situation objectively and without emotional colouring. Thus when you open up your concerns before your friend, you are committing yourself once again to the goals you have established. He or she will hold you accountable and that will help you progress.

#7. See the bigger picture always.
When you climb up and have a look down, the scene appears different than when you looked around while you were on ground level. The scene from above is the bigger picture. Life is not just about the little things you do every day. There are things eternal that matter more than money, career, achievements or fame. Life can be lived out in days and not in years. So have the impact of your entire life and beyond in mind when you use the present moment wisely.

Jesus Christ of Nazareth!

7 More Than the Fear of Death–Stage Fright!

Why do people fear speaking in public more than they fear death?

#1. You Stand Alone
That is frightening. Many people like to be in the comfort of a group; allow others to talk and feel happy being led. The sudden change from being a passive listener to a visible speaker is difficult for many to accept.

#2. The Fear of Making a Fool of Oneself
It can happen if the mind goes blank, if words go wrong, or if fear shows through. The worry of making mistakes ensures that mistakes do come.

#3. My Ideas Are Not Good Enough
It is not ideas that are bad. It is often the packaging of ideas that needs to be done well. A chocolate wrapped in a newspaper will not be well received even if you tell the world that it is a delicious chocolate that is inside it.

#4. What Will People Think About Me
As long as we are focused on what people are thinking about us; stage fright will rule. So many people become self conscious on stage and then a battle of nerves begin.

#5. Lack of Knowledge of Crafting a Speech
Lack of knowledge of one’s subject is a concern. But more than that many people do not know how to grab attention at the beginning; organize content well; use transitions effectively, support with evidence, illustrations, examples; and end on a positive, high note.

#6. Fear of Past Failures
Most people have had bad experiences in their first attempts on stage. Sometimes these failures like forgetting memorized lines or shivering were made fun of by friends, teachers, or strangers even. Such bad memories paralyze people from speaking with courage.

#7. Fear of Rejection
Everyone loves to be appreciated and accepted. But every time one goes on to stage to speak (however experienced he or she may be), there is the possibility of facing rejection from the audience. It is a fear that can trouble even the really confident speaker.

The good news however is that none of these fears need prevent you from becoming a good speaker. With a burning desire from your part, perseverance and help from a public speaking trainer who can inspire you with confidence; you can speak without fear. Yes, you can!
Jesus Christ of Nazareth!

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How to Win Over Depression in 7 Quick Steps!

Depression is quite common today. A deep sense of discouragement, hopelessness, despair, loneliness, loss of confidence, and the thought of being a failure accompanies it too.

Some situations require medical help. But a good number of cases of depression can be overcome with a little bit of care and help from friends and trust in God. Hope and patience are very important in the process of recovery.

#1. Accept the Condition
There is no need to be ashamed that you’re passing through a period of depression. It simply means that you’re finding it more than usually difficult to handle some disappointment that came your way. But the sun is shining still even though clouds have obscured your vision of it. The clouds will soon give way and the blue skies will shine bright and clear once again. So accept your depression as real for the moment but it is a phase in life that will pass.

#2. Why Live in the Past When You Can Leave it Behind?
Wisdom in life is about knowing what you can change and what things cannot be changed. So many of your thoughts are futile since it revolves around things that cannot be changed. The best you can do is to let go of things behind you and focus on things you can do something about now and tomorrow. So bury your past with all its success and glory as well as its fair share of failures.

#3. Start Somewhere
Instead of ever waiting for the right moment to being, start right away to do something even as you’re reading this. Do a small task-even a small task like arranging 2 or 3 books on your table. That activity will lift up your heart as well as prime you for further action. Do not think about how to do a task while you’re depressed; just start acting and while you’re doing it think how to do it well. Do it in small segments so that you will not feel overwhelmed.

#4. Believe That Better Days Are Ahead
Depression colours all things black and negative. It refuses to see the brighter side of things. Often there is a tug of war inside your mind when you try to see the positive side of things; for one part of you is holding on to the negative alone. But the truth is that there are better days ahead. You need to believe it in order to see it happen. You need to stop being in love with your depressed condition and shake yourself free from the comfort of your bed and get up!

#5. Overcome the Martyr-Complex
Do not believe the lie, “Everybody is against me and no one cares for me.” During depression self-pity will be at its peak. Do not fall for this trap. Even if no one cares for you, God does. His resources are infinite and he will bring people to you who can help you. Be also encouraged for these are the promises of God:

Can a mother forget the baby at hear breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you!

Cast all your anxiety on him [God] because he cares for you.

“Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the LORD, who has compassion on you.

The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

#6. Never Lose Sight of Your Dream
“Yet there’s not much to do, but to bury a man
When the last of his dreams is dead.” So wrote a poet*.

My dear friend, if you’re the captain of a ship and you encountered rough weather, would you stop your voyage? Would you turn back? No; isn’t it? The captain will sail and steer the ship through rough weather and storms to the desired shore he wanted to reach. So should you! You should never lose sight of your goals and dreams just because the going is stormy at the moment.

#7. To Get Out of Depression, Be Other-Focused
Most of your troubles would vanish if you try to help someone else. A vast majority of people in depression are overwhelmed by a sense of uselessness. But the truth is that there are lot of people out there who need your help in the form of your expertise, your physical presence with them, and sometimes your financial and other resources. So step out of your moodiness and become actively involved in lifting up the spirits of someone else. In that effort you’ll be back to your normal self once again.

Guard the Flame
Those who are in depression often think about giving up on life. It is a mad and murderous thought. It is important that you open up and talk with someone whom you trust. You need to know that life is worth holding on to in spite of all the struggles you are passing through right now. It is your sacred honour to guard the flame from getting snuffed out by the wind.

Jesus Christ of Nazareth!
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*William Herbert Carruth, from Each In His Own Tongue: and Other Poems (1908). Ghosts of Dreams.
Bible Quotes: Isaiah 49:15, 1 Peter 5:7, Isaiah 54:10. Psalm 34:18 (NIV).

7 Pillars of Enduring Friendship

Here are Seven principles of good friendship.

#1. Trust
How do you go about defining trust in a relationship? It is like leaving all your valuables at home unlocked and openly visible when you go out and while your friend is staying behind. It is that confidence that your friend has your highest good in mind and will do you no harm. And if you ask me how trust can be developed; you start trusting by believing the best about your friend.

#2. Loyalty
The best you can be to your friend is showing up for him or her during their times of need. It might mean that you cancel some of your scheduled programmes to squeeze in some time to be with your friend. It sometimes might involve travel just to be with him or her. A friend sticks to you when he or she knows that you can be counted to stand with him or her in a moment of crisis.

#3. Communication
Friendship is developed over the years and communication is vital to its success. You need to find time to spend with each other and talk openly about matters that concern both of you. Even if you are separated by distance maintain constant contact via emails or phone calls. Do not try to make your friend a dustbin where you can dump all your worries. If you want your friendship to survive be a keen listener while your friend talks. Do not jump in with opinions while he or she is talking; allow him or her to express or ventilate all their feelings.

#4. Encouragement
The best, the brightest, and the most brilliant person also needs encouragement. As my Professor at College said after receiving a card some of my classmates gave him on Teacher’s Day containing the words, “We will write it on the wall that you are the best teacher . . .”; “We all need encouragement. Thanks for your card. I was floating on the air for three days.” You can encourage your friend by thoughtful words, giving gifts on his or her special days, by a surprise visit when he or she is down in spirit.

One classic example of offering encouragement in friendship that has been recorded is that of David (the young boy who killed the giant Goliath) and Jonathan. When Jonathan knew for certain that his father King Saul was trying to take David’s life, he went out into the desert where David was hiding and “helped him find strength in God.”

#5. Honest Criticism
So many people do harm to their friends when they refuse to be honest with them. In order not to hurt their friends they withhold painful truths. I have asked many BPPS students about their very obvious awkward mannerisms. I am often given the answer that no one, not even their best friends, had pointed it out to them. We shouldn’t try to hurt our friends; but at the same time if we do not hurt them with honest criticism they will be losers in the long run. But do it in a spirit of love rather than in a “I am better than you” attitude.

“Better is open rebuke than hidden love. Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy mutlitplies kisses” — King Solomon (Proverbs 27:5, 6 NIV).

#6. Someone Who Pushes You To Be Your Best
Mediocrity happens when no one is trying to push you harder. If we look at how mother eagles teach their young ones to fly; they just disturb the cosy nest that is high up on some cliff and push each eaglet down. It looks cruel to the onlooker; but that push into the deep fall downwards is absolutely essential to teach the eaglets to fly. But when the eaglet flaps its wings and is unable to hold out on its own; the mother eagle swoops down underneath it and holds it up in her stretched wings.

This is an image that God uses to tell us of his friendship towards us. He, like good friends, sometimes disturbs our lives so that we will be our best by daring the impossible.

#7. Prayer
I have a few faithful friends who always pray for me. It has encouraged me a lot over the years. I am absolutely certain that their prayers have made a great difference in my life. There are times in life when our best counsel and help might not be enough to meet our friend’s need. Those are times we commit our friends to God’s higher power and wisdom.

In a classic instance, Jesus, just before his impending death on the cross predicted that his foremost disciple and friend Simon Peter would deny knowing him. But he also added, “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail.” It was that prayer that restored their friendship even after Peter denied knowing his Saviour and Master. So, it is a good practice to pray for your friends constantly.

When the Music Is Out of Tune
Without doubt, expect misunderstandings and hurts to come often in friendship. When that happens do not wait for your friend to come to you and make things clear. Take the initiative and open dialogue. Let the motive not be to fix the blame; but let your attitude be to bring the best out of the bitter experience. Love “keeps no record of wrongs.”

Sometimes our best friends do us wrong. But let us learn to forgive. What I try to do when some mistakes do happen from my friends is this: I deliberately think about all the good that they have done for me in times past; the simple things to big helps they have done for me. As I list them out, the love for them returns and in a matter of minutes the wrong they did falls into perspective!

Friends are God’s gift to us.

Let us celebrate friendship and thank God for all our friends!
Jesus Christ of Nazareth!

“Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you” – Jesus Christ.

7 Sure Steps on How to Handle Confidence Loss

I am yet to meet a genuinely talented person who has not passed through a period of confidence loss in his or her life or career. Certainly these dark periods of doubt have really made people stronger than before. But many are not so fortunate because they do not know how to handle periods of confidence loss. So here a few trusted steps to handle it in your life.

#1. Share your confidence loss with a trusted friend
A trusted friend can help you see reality which otherwise you will not be able to see. He or she, who listens to you, can help you by giving you a proper perspective on what is happening to you. What you think is a mountain of a problem will not look so huge or threatening or impossible to conquer once you have shared your difficulty with your friend. The real comfort and strength in such an exercise is that you can be yourself and not feel ashamed about your weakness or inferiority complex .

#2. Think of your best past performances
When you pass through a period of confidence loss it is quite natural to brood on all negatives and failures that has happened to you. That is self-defeating. Instead of doing this, think of all your best past performances. If you have memorials of them like trophies, medals, videos, certificates, mementos or even a card of appreciation, take a look at them and think about all those great performances you did in the past. And go one step further. Think that you can do it again.The only difference is that you are going to do much better now than before. Believe it.

#3. Never believe that confidence loss is a permanent condition
Some people accept confidence loss as a permanent attachment of their lives! How sad to see people live in the belief that they will never get out of self confidence. Such a belief is a lie and wholly untrue! What we need to accept is the fact that for a brief passing period of life we have entered a tunnel experience where all is dark. But hold on. Light will break at the end of the tunnel. Confidence loss therefore should be accepted as a normal part of life but never accepted as a permanent condition. In this acceptance you will find freedom!

#4. Change those things that can be changed
Certain situations in life cannot be changed. No need to waste your time thinking “What if it were like this or that?” But then there are things that can be changed. And it is absolutely necessary to do so when it is contributing to your confidence loss. Let us take a simple example. Some people struggle with confidence loss when they are given a new responsibility which involves expertize they do not have. So what’s the problem. Enrol for a course that will get you that expertize. Or meet with a few people who have had previous experience handling that responsibility and learn from them. These are do-able things. Therefore embrace change instead of resisting it. Yes, do not fear change.

#5. Do not rush things
Speed and mad rush have become part of our lives. The sad story is that we really forget to live because we don’t have time to stop and enjoy life. And when it comes to confidence loss, the huge temptation is to rush things and try to get back to top gear as quickly as possible. This is going to backfire. Instead take your time. Go it slow. Stop your activity and simply do nothing for long periods. Your mind and body needs the stops rather than the notes of music at this time. And remember each person in the same situation of confidence loss takes a different time to recoup and recover. So take your time and do not allow anyone to rush you!

#6. Go for lesser goals for the time being
There might have been a time when the big stage was your playground. But after a period of confidence loss, just aim for the small stage. There you can perfect the basics of your craft once again. There the pressure is less as the audience will be few. Maybe some people will ask why the big fish is playing in the small pond? There is no need to answer that question. Your goal at the moment is to get back the rhythm and the passion and the enthusiasm and the effortless grace with which you did things in the past. Till you get back to your absolute best stay contented on the small stage. Your time to roar and soar is just a few days away!
7 Steps to Your Goal

#7. Trust God for a great comeback in your life

No matter what the darkness in your life;
no matter how great the loss you have faced;
no matter whether it was your irresponsibility or mistake;
no matter how long you have been out of touch with your best;
no matter who or what great odds are pitted against you;
no matter how depressed and sorrowful you are now;
know that with God nothing is impossible.

As King David rightly expressed,: “You, O LORD, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light” (Psalm 18:28). Yes, with God you can. Even before you stop reading this thank God for the mighty comeback he has enabled in your life. It will happen; it surely will!

The true inspire!
A final thought that we need to keep in mind is that confidence loss is no hopeless condition. If rightly approached, such a phase in life can bring the best out of us; and can result in an outflow of creative use of our hidden potential and talents. More perhaps has been achieved by people with confidence loss when they have trusted in the grace of God. When St. Paul prayed thrice that God will remove a thorn in his flesh (exactly what this source of his confidence loss was no one knows), the Lord Jesus Christ told him the secret to get the better of it:

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weaknesses.”

Paul, powered by that word of confidence, became a great achiever in spite of all negatives that happened to him in life. So also we too can achieve trusting in the power of the One whose grace is sufficient in all our confidence losses and whose power energizes us to rise and conquer in spite of all our weaknesses!

Jesus Christ of Nazareth!
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