Author Archives: Pushkar Gaikwad

A psychologist walked around a room

A psychologist walked around a room while teaching stress management to an audience. As she raised a glass of water, everyone expected they’d be asked the “half empty or half full” question. Instead, with a smile on her face, she inquired: “How heavy is this glass of water?”

Answers called out ranged from 8 oz. to 20 oz.

She replied, “The absolute weight doesn’t matter. It depends on how long I hold it. If I hold it for a minute, it’s not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I’ll have an ache in my arm. If I hold it for a day, my arm will feel numb and paralyzed. In each case, the weight of the glass doesn’t change, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.”
She continued, “The stresses and worries in life are like that glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Think about them a bit longer and they begin to hurt. And if you think about them all day long, you will feel paralyzed – incapable of doing anything.”

Remember to put the glass down.

You need to get these 3 things right in life – Family, Money and Relationship

You need to get these 3 things right in life – Family, Money and Relationship

I was talking about this with my friend Rahul few days back that why it is so important to get 3 things right in life and those who get them right at very young age lives a much better life.

So almost every problem that we have comes from 3 things

1. Money – Mostly lack of money, we spent 60 hours a week trying to earn money to live better life and most of us spend the whole life chasing it.

Those who are able to solve this problem of having enough money by the age of 30 tends to get much more time do more in life than everyone else.

2. Family – (Parents, Siblings, Spouse, kids).

We are worried about their health, their finances, well-being, how they are not doing as well as they should be in life etc.

Those whose family is doing well, parents are in control of their lives as well as siblings in all aspects of life, they tends to worry less and do better in life as they can focus better and can get their priories right.

3. Relationships – (friends, colleagues, social circle, girlfriends/boyfriends etc)

We are worried about social status, how am I doing socially, having problems with office colleagues and friends, having problems in relationships etc.

Those who get their relationships right, seems to attract right kind of things, looks to be in better control of life and people around them, tends to worry less and increase overall positivity around them.

So to summarize, you really want to solve these 3 aspects of your life as fast/soon as possible, preferably by the age of 30 or 35 at max because if you do, life becomes much easier.

Startups fail in Marketing, Not in Building the Product

I am in Bangalore for the past 3 years now, have probably seen more than 200 startups (50 from TheMorpheus + 150 others at pluggd/TechSpark/TiE/Jaaga/SiliconeIndia etc) and I have yet to meet anyone who is not able to build “it”. Whether it is a product company or a services company (product needs building something tangible, services need building team of skilled people, both are equally difficult), the problem they face is, after building it, everyone hits a brick wall. Now what ?

When people start companies, they are way too high on adrenaline since startups are heavily glamorized. People sit in cafe coffee days, discussing how great our product/company will be, discussing features after features, reading HackerNews/TC and generic no context essays of PG. Once the excitement and the kicks settle down (normally after 8 months), people realizes that they never thought of marketing and how they are going to sell and acquire customers.

When they start (I also made the same mistakes), most of the acquisition strategies are just in your head and never tested. You tells yourself how easily you will go from 1 to 10 to 100 to 500 etc where as in reality, getting 1 to 5 to 10 sales can take months and this do lot of damage as mentally you were prepared to see numbers going exponentially which rarely happens.

Development is not that difficult, nor is Marketing (of course you can’t sell a product which is poorly built or if there is no market) but Marketing takes 3X more time. So if it is taking you 6 months to build the product, it will probably take you 18 months to do sales and marketing before you can really call your effort success or failure.

India needs to get its shit together and have to start Respecting Life and Women

I hang out a lot on various web forums and India’s image has taken some beating in last 6 months. India is making the headlines on daily basis for two reasons. Rape and Loss of life.

Since Indian newspapers are filled with garbage, I don’t read them nor I have a television but here are some of the news items of last 48 hours.

1. There is Indian Air Force chopper crashed killing 20 people.
2. Manipal student gang raped
3. American gang Raped in India

Yes, India is a big nation, has 1.2 Billion population, media is more wide spread and yes, probably this is not all new and is going on since beginning but still this doesn’t mean we can close our eyes as these are not isolated cases.

I always felt that you should judge a country/culture with 2 basic things

1. How much respect they give to life.
2. How much respect they give to women.

I think we know pretty well where India stands. Unfortunately there is no quick cure for any of the above two problems and for India, it is more of a cultural and attitude problem. Well I can just hope that people in India irrespective of who or where they are and despite of their social, educational and financial status start respecting life and women.

If you know any such organization who is working on solving these two problems, please inform me, I would love to help them and be part of it.

My Engineering Experience and Education being a Huge Scam in India

My Engineering (I did it from IIIT Hyderabad) was a farce, I learnt nothing and consider my four years as total waste of my life considering I made only 2 close friends, was lost and confused all the time, was not enjoying how things were going and in 3rd year I wanted to drop out but didn’t had the courage to do it. Somehow I managed to finish my engineering and got my degree in Computer Science but it still hurt considering I lost the most valuable years of my life doing nothing.

The college was very nice with extremely smart students, highly qualified faculties, amazing staff and resources, it is just that I was not able to figure out what I want to do and how. Whatever I learnt, I learnt only from Internet and through library books which does give me some satisfaction that not everything was lost (I of course did found Internet in 2nd year which did changed my life for ever).

Indian Education System

My Experience often makes me think about Indian education (specially higher) system and how shambolic it is. Most of the people who are doing engineering and management doesn’t understand what they are doing and why they are doing, everyone is following someone else, everyone want to be someone else and everyone wants to live someone else’s life.

Indian education system was built to produce cogs (by British Raj) and hence it is devoid of free thinking and nothing much has changed after 65 years of freedom. Indian education system is still producing cogs just to fit in the system. Today Engineering degree costs 5 lakh, MBBS costs 8 lakh, Law costs 10 lakh and MBA costs 12 lakh (all approximations) which is total waste of money considering most of the people learn nothing of any value (other than Medicine) and can learn things by themselves in 1/3rd of the time at 1/10th of the cost.

This really frustrates me and angers me because it is OK if you don’t have money, the country lacks resources and you didn’t have privileged upbringing but it is NOT OK to not able to think and to be part of system which kills creativity, stops you from thinking out of the box and forces you to be just like others.

I have promised to myself that whenever possible, I will try to convince people to seriously reconsider their decisions of higher education in India as to me it looks like a huge business scam. If you have money, spend it on yourself, learn by yourself.

Life is Unfair

Life is Unfair, Accept it and Get used to it. This is how Universe works.

I am not saying this in any negative way but I think this is how it works in real life. You just can’t complain that life was unfair to you because that is how it is. You can’t argue, you can’t reason, you can’t plead, you can’t blame.

I have also decided to write a book on my learnings (though it will take time, may be at the end of this year as I want to make it perfect), the book will pretty much have same thoughts and learnings which I write on this blog every week but it will be having better flow. And needless to say, the first chapter will be called “Life is Unfair”.

Always Bet on Yourself

I saw this image from pulp fiction on Reddit and couldn’t resist myself replying in the thread since I strongly believes in betting on yourself and this conviction is getting stronger with each passing day. I had made a blog post 4 years back that what will you do if you have 50,000 rupees ?, you should invest on yourself since this is the best investment you can ever do with that money.

Here is what I wrote

I can not agree with this more. The amount of mediocrity that is there in the world is astonishing, not to mention people tends to give bare minimum by default (I myself have been guilty of doing this when I worked for others).

Throughout my life, whatever success I had, I only got it by betting on myself. I also strongly feels, you are your biggest asset and should invest in yourself rather than on others (I am not saying this in a negative way, right people will always be your best assets, it is just that people often think others are better than you when in realty you are not that bad and others are not that good).

Concept of Net Entropy and Life – My Thoughts

I wanted to write this blog post since a long time back and finally got time to finish it. I often think about this and strongly believes in what I am writing (and many posts in future will be linking back to this)

Entropy of your Life should always increase. Also you should always look to improve the net entropy of the universe.

What is Entropy – As per the laws of universe and thermodynamics, entropy is the randomness in the universe. And as per the fundamental laws of physics, the entropy of the universe will always increase.

What is Entropy of Life and your Universe – Everything that is happening around you, all the good things, all the bad things, your actions, others action affecting you, is entropy of your universe. Now you can either reduce it with negativity, taking selfish decisions, getting wrong priorities in life etc or you can increase the entropy of the universe by doing things which benefit everyone, having a positive outlook towards life and people around you, doing things which makes you happy, feeding the right wolf, getting things aligned in life, getting the timing of life right etc.

Do think about it and try to increase entropy of your life and universe.

I have also decided to write at least one blog post every week since I like writing and have 81 posts as draft which I should be publishing in coming months. My blog also act as a vent to release all the thoughts and energy as well as it helps to get rid of negativity and loneliness around me.

You

Success = Get things Aligned in Life

I was discussing this with one of my friend sometime back that how it is so important to get things aligned in life.

Those people who are able to align everything eventually gets what all they want, for the rest, it is long struggle.

Here is perfect example of some of the people whom I know (mostly from my college) -

1. Became software engineers, spent four years and learnt nothing (I am prime example of this too, I learnt nothing in my engineering years and consider it to be lost years of my life)

2. Some of them did MBA immediately after engineering, so the 4 years turn out to be total waste as eventually they get into finance, operations or analytics.

3. Those who didn’t do MBA immediately. worked as software engineers for 1-2 year, again learnt nothing, kept on trying to crack CAT, eventually did it or went to US to do MBA. So this is waste of 6 years considering they completely changed their paths.

4. After 2 years of MBA, people got jobs in different cities, in different companies and in different verticals, everyone started their life again, most of them went on to change 1-2 jobs in first 18 months for higher salaries. After 1-2 years, now the finance guy is trying to move to analytics and Operations guy into consultancy. There are few who wants to leave India to work in US for few years to have some savings.

I can go on and on but I think it is clear what is going on here. You can’t jump ships from one to another, in life, you need to align everything as only than you will achieve success, so stick to one thing. 

Of course, the problem is, most of the people don’t know what they want in life but it is OK as long as you are loving what you are doing but the problem is, people keeps on doing things which they don’t like and which makes them unsatisfied, unhappy and anxious. (watch this video what if money was no object)

So the summary of the post is, in life if you want to be successful, Align Everything which is Learning (your knowledge), Passion, Dream, Life, things in which you are good at and Things which make you happy.

Which wolf wins (story)

An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy.

“It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.” He continued, “The other is good – he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you – and inside every other person, too.”

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”