The importance of perspective and intelligent analysis…

Story source

From the book – “How Not To Be Wrong” by Jordan Ellenberg

During World War II, numerous fighter planes were getting hit by anti-aircraft guns. Air Force officers wanted to add some protective armor/ shield to the planes. The question was “where”?

The planes could only support few more kilos of weight. A group of mathematicians and engineers were called for a short consulting project.

Fighter planes returning from missions were analysed for bullet holes per square foot.They found 1.93 bullet holes/sq. foot near the tail of the planes whereas only 1.11 bullet holes/sq. foot close to the engine. The Air Force officers thought that since the tail portion had the greatest density of bullets, that would be the logical location for putting an anti-bullet shield.

A mathematician named Abraham Wald said exactly the opposite; more protection is needed where the bullet holes aren’t – that is -around the engines. His judgment surprised everyone. He said “We are counting the planes that returned from a mission. Planes with lots of bullet holes in the engine did not return at all.”


If you go to the recovery room at the hospital, you’ll see a lot more people with bullet holes in their legs than people with bullet holes in their chests.That’s not because people don’t get shot in the chest; it’s because the people who get shot in the chest don’t recover.

Remember the words of Einstein – “Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted, counts.”

Why lack of data is also an important part of data analysis?

We all have been used to hearing the phrase ‘We need data analysis to take decisions’. However, a lot of times, we get into the’data’ itself so much that ‘analysis’ takes a back seat.

Therefore, it is imperative that while analyzing situations, you do not just look at the information itself, but the way information was collected, the sources used and the conditions in which  information was collected. On a wholesome understanding, that can give a result that is valid.

Dear Zindagi, it’s been a while…

Dear Zindagi,

It’s been a while since we caught up! I got reminded of you last weekend when I was watching Alia Bhatt and Shah Rukh Khan’s ‘Dear Zindagi’. I thought I owed you a note –

Like Jug (SRK’s character in the film) quoted Albert Einstein in the movie, “Paagal woh hota hai jo roz roz same kaam karta hai, magar chahta hai ke nateeja alag ho” – the definition of insanity is doing something over and over again and expecting a different result. Many a times, I find myself or my colleagues cribbing overwork, our schedules, client expectations, boss’s  expectations, our relationships at work etc. But, more often than not, we don’t change anything – we don’t want to change the way we work, the way we plan our day, and the way we deal with people around. And yet, we expect things to become better. Basically, we tend to forget that the locus of control needs to be within ourselves than outside! After all, change comes from within 🙂

“Hum hamesha mushkil raasta hi kyun chunte hain zaroori kaam ke liye? Kya pata, aasan raaste se bhi kaam ho jaaye!” I also loved this precious bit about making a choice between the harder and the easier path to solve a problem. At work, I often find myself at crossroads – I feel like choosing the harder path because somehow it seems more right, more rewarding and gives me the satisfaction of pulling off a difficult choice. I sometimes fail to remind myself that I need to choose my battles wisely. There are certain things that keep reminding me that choosing the easy path does not mean taking the issue at hand easy. It means that sometimes tactical steps seem more beneficial than the long drawn ones.

And finally what touched me the most was your definition of a Genius– “Genius wo nahi hota jiske paas sab sawaal ke jawaab hon. Genius wo hota hai jiske pass jawaab tak pahunchne ka patience ho…” -that Geniuses don’t necessarily have all the answers, it’s just that they have the patience to get there. As a parent, working mother, wife, colleague or any other relationship, I have learnt the importance of patience. I do not have all the answers. And I still don’t. But just the perseverance and passion to find the answers have kept me in good stead. Life is a hard journey. The ones who succeed are the ones who have the patience to get to these answers.

Here’s to you Zindagi, for an exciting roller-coaster ride with you!

Your student for life,

This Book Left Me in Tears..

All lives have equal value. But some deaths seem particularly cruel.

When Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 2013, he was a 36-year-old on the verge of making big contributions to the world with his mind and hands. He was a gifted doctor—a chief resident in neurosurgery at Stanford just months away from completing the most gruelling training of any clinical field. He was also a brilliant scientist. His postdoctoral research on gene therapy won him his field’s highest research award.

As if that wasn’t enough, he was also a great writer. Before attending medical school, he earned two degrees in English literature from Stanford and gave serious consideration to pursuing writing as a full-time career.

What a talent! What a loss!

In fact, I can say this is the best nonfiction story I’ve read in a long time. Thanks to this book, the reader gets to know well and like Kalanithi alot. He brings you not just into his journey as a doctor and then as a patient but also into his role as a husband, which was sorely strained at times by the rigors of his and his wife’s clinical residencies. Kalanithi and his wife, Lucy, decide to have a child despite (or maybe even because of) Kalanithi’s diagnosis. Kalanithi was there for the delivery, but he was so weak and chilled from chemotherapy that he wasn’t able to put his newborn daughter against his skin. Eight months later, Kalanithi died just a few hundred yards away from where his daughter entered the world.

This book definitely earned my admiration—and tears.

I don’t know how anyone could read Lucy’s epilogue, in particular, without choking up. “I visit his grave often, taking a small bottle of Madeira, the wine of our honeymoon destination,” she writes. “Each time, I pour some out on the grass for Paul … and rub the grass as if it were Paul’s hair. Cady visits his grave before her nap, lying on a blanket … watching the clouds above and grabbing at the flowers we’ve laid down.” What happened to Paul was tragic but he was not a tragedy.

But don’t be put off by the sadness of it all. I should emphasize the other things that drew me to this book.

For one thing, I thoroughly enjoyed Kalanithi’s stories about his surgical training. I’ve always admired doctors. They have to make impossibly hard decisions, and so much of their work has life-and-death implications. Kalanithi illustrates these high stakes well, without sounding like he has a God complex. One story that will stick with every parent who reads this book involves a young patient with a brain tumor. “The difference between tragedy and triumph was defined by one or two millimetres.

I was also drawn in by Kalanithi’s eloquent writing. I look up to all doctors, but the ones I’m impressed with most are the ones who are not just gifted healers but also writers. It’s always a shock to me when I find one, but by now it shouldn’t be. Kalanithi is part of a fraternity of amazing writer doctors, including Abraham Verghese (who wrote the foreword to Paul’s book). Perhaps I should consult a neuro-scientist to figure out whether these seemingly disparate talents are somehow linked in the brain.

I am certain I will read When Breath Becomes Air again and again. This short book has so many layers of meaning and so many interesting juxtapositions—life and death, patient and doctor, son and father, work and family, faith and reason—I know I’ll pick up more insights the third time around.

I don’t know how Kalanithi found the physical strength to write this book while he was so debilitated by the disease and then potent chemotherapy. But I’m so glad he did. He spent his whole brief life searching for meaning in one way or another—through books, writing, medicine, surgery, and science. I’m grateful that, by reading this book, I got to witness a small part of that journey.

I just wish the journey hadn’t been cut so short so soon.

Lock-down tales… This too shall pass!

Ok.. so here to begin.. it took me quite some time to gather my thoughts to understand why did I start blogging, the purpose of it, the core value system of this blog page. I had very conveniently forgotten my password. So it was like a small hibernation for the last 15 months. I hope I do justice to it now that it has resurrected. A lot has happened and of course a lot has changed since the last time I posted something up here.

-Pulwama attack – India gives back with strike at Balakot -Modiji won a second term at office (Yay) -India was defeated badly at the world cup semis (The kiwis actually deserved to win at the finals) -My son lost 3 teeth and has got only 2 till now (don’t know where n when the third one will spring up) -The need to getting back to shape arose (You see the weighing machine started mocking at me) -Article 375 revoked for Jammu & Kashmir (now I understand the pain of being under lock down) -Maharashtra faced some of the most mocking and shameful moments (you see they just couldn’t decide on who would sit on the chair) -Verdict on Ramjanmabhoomi followed by the controversial CAA & NRC -The most important happening thing CORONA – CoVID19

Phew……anything else that has created more havoc than CoVID 19???

So lockdown has definitely treated me well as of now.. I’ve started visiting every corner of my house looking for cobwebs, lost treasures such as hotwheels cars, uno cards, pencils, paper aeroplanes, toys, spoons and many more such things. So a blessing in disguise need not wait until summer vacations as I get to rope in my WORK FROM HOME husband to WORK FOR HOME for some time. Had a good opportunity to stock up the house, so cooking and eating haven’t taken a back seat. I am sure when we go back to our respective workplaces we’d all look so well fed and nourished rite..?? 🙂

This time also gave me an opportunity to connect with my friends and cousins over video calls as we maintained social distancing. With the fact grilled in my mind that everything is shut, didn’t bring the thought of ordering from out; as it brought in a fear of Corona coming along. Hand-washes and sanitizers started showing up more often on my tables and in my rooms. Picked up some books from the shelf that were catching dust. Hope-fully I should get to write a review about one or two. I am now quite punctual when it comes to listening to Modiji’s Mann ki baat (mitron to bhaiyon – actually I am keen to know what is he going to shut down next).

So hopefully, I should get back to writing more frequently. I don’t know why I didn’t continue after I wrote the last one.. maybe I was just lazy to type or…??? Anyways, it’s good to see many posts coming in from around the world. Though I haven’t been writing, I have been reading the posts of my fellow bloggers.

So stay home and stay safe everyone.. Take care. GO CORONA GO 🙂

The Pervasiveness of Loss

Kafka and the Doll, The Pervasiveness of Loss.

The picture above is as profound as the story behind it. It is titled “The Pervasiveness of Loss”.

Franz Kafka, the story goes, encountered a little girl in the park where he went walking daily. She was crying. She had lost her doll and was inconsolable. Kafka offered to help her look for the doll and arranged to meet her the next day at the same spot.

Unable to find the doll he composed a letter from the doll and read it to her when they met. “Please do not mourn me, I have gone on a trip to see the world. I will write you of my adventures”. This was the beginning of many letters. When he and the little girl met, he read her from these carefully composed letters of the imagined adventures of the beloved doll. The little girl was comforted.

When the meetings came to an end, Kafka presented her with a doll. She obviously looked different from the original doll. An attached letter explained “My travels have changed me”. Many years later, the now grown girl found a letter stuffed into an unnoticed crevice in the cherished replacement doll.

In summary it said: “Everything that you love, you will eventually lose, but in the end, love will return in a different form”.

My Child

My Child –  Source Unknown

My child

My child isn’t by easel to paint, nor my diamond to polish!

My child isn’t my trophy to flaunt, nor my dummy to taunt!

My child isn’t my badge or my honor, nor my respect that he/ she must protect!

My child isn’t an idea or a fantasy, nor my reflection or legacy!

My child isn’t my puppet or my project, nor my pawn or my cadet!

My child is here to fumble & stumble, to get in & out of trouble!

My child is here to try, to fall and to cry!

My child is here to unravel the mysteries, to educate oneself & rewrite histories!

My child is here to make his/ her own choices, to exercise his/ her freewill & experience the consequences!

As a parent,

My task is make my child able & capable,

To keep aside my ego & be his/ her side!

My task is to guide & educate,

To let be & not frustrate!

My task is allow him/ her to ponder,

And see my child grow into a Wonder!

“The Vulture and the little girl”

They called it “The Vulture and the little girl”.
Kevin Carter's Award winning photo
This photo of a vulture waiting for a starving Sudanese girl to die was taken by Kevin Carter who later won the Pulitzer for this picture, but he lived just few months to
enjoy his supposed achievement because he later got depressed and took his own life.  
He was actually savoring his  feat and being celebrated on major news channels and 
networks world wide. His depression started when  during one of such interviews (phone in program) someone phoned on and asked him what happened to the child. 
He replied, “I didn’t wait to find out after this shot as I had a plane to catch.”… 
And the person replied, “I put it to you that there were two vultures on that day. One had a camera”.
His constant thought of that statement, led to depression  and his ultimate suicide.
In whatsoever we do, let humanity come first before what we can gain out of the situation. 
Kevin Carter could have been alive today if he just picked that little girl up and taken her to the United Nation’s feeding Center where she was attempting to reach. 
#Let Love Lead
#Humanity First
You can read more about this on  

The age of quick fixes..!

Its a beautiful read (forwarding). Certain figures are old and not updated.
“It’s been 18 years since I joined  Volvo, a Swedish company. Working for them has proven to be an interesting experience. Any project here takes 2 years to be finalized, even if the idea is simple and brilliant. It’s a rule.” 
Globalized processes have caused in us (all over the world) a general sense of searching for immediate  results. Therefore, we have come to possess a need to see immediate results. This contrasts greatly with the slow movements of the Swedish. They, on the other hand, debate, debate, debate, hold x quantity of meetings and work with a slowdown scheme. At the end, this always yields better results.
1. Sweden has 2 million inhabitants.. 
2. Stockholm has 500,000 people. 
3. Volvo, Escania, Ericsson, Electrolux, are some of its renowned companies. Volvo even supplies NASA. 
The first time I was in Sweden , one of my colleagues picked me up at the hotel every morning. It was September,bit cold and snowy. We would arrive early at the company and he would park far away from the entrance (2000 employees drive their car to work). The first day, I didn’t say anything, neither the second or third days. One morning I asked him, “Do you have a fixed parking space? I’ve noticed we park far from the entrance even when there are no other cars in the lot.” To which he replied, “Since we’re here early we’ll have time to walk, don’t you think that whoever gets in late will need a place closer to the door?” Imagine my face.
Nowadays, there’s a movement in Europe named Slow Food. This movement establishes that people should eat and drink slowly, with enough time to taste their food, spend time with the family, friends, without rushing. Slow Food is against its counterpart, Fast Food and what it stands for as a lifestyle. Slow Food is the basis for a bigger movement called Slow Europe, as mentioned by Business Week. 
Basically, the movement questions the sense of “hurry” and “craziness” generated by globalization, fueled by the desire of “having in quantity” (life status) versus “having with quality”, “life quality” or the “quality of being”.
French people, even though they work 35 hours per week, are more productive than Americans or British. Germans have established 28.8 hour workweeks and have seen their productivity driven up by 20%. This slow attitude has come to the notice of USA , the pupils of the fast and “do it now” brigade.
This no-rush attitude doesn’t represent doing less or having a lower productivity. It means working and doing things with greater quality, productivity, perfection, with attention to detail and less stress. 
It means re-establishing family values, friends, free and leisure time. Taking the “now”, present and concrete, versus the “global”, undefined and anonymous. It means taking humans’ essential values, the simplicity of living. It stands for a less coercive work environment, more happy, lighter and more productive work place where humans enjoy doing what they know best how to do.
It’s time to stop and think on how companies need to develop serious quality with no-rush that will increase productivity and the quality of products and services, without losing the essence.
In the movie, ‘Scent of a Woman’, there’s a scene where Al Pacino asks a girl to dance and she replies, “I can’t, my boyfriend will be here any minute now”. To which Al Pacino responds, “A life is lived in an instant”. Then they dance the tango!  
Many of us live our lives running behind time, but we only reach it when we die of a heart attack or in a car accident rushing to be on time. Others are so anxious to live for the future that they forget to live the present, which is the only time that truly exists.
We all have equal time throughout the world. No one has more or less. The difference lies in how each one of us does with our time. We need to live each moment. As John Lennon said, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans”.
🎀Worth reading.. In this age of quick fixes

Developing Successful Financial Habits – By Dr. Prema Chandran

This blog was posted by Dr. Prema Chandran, MBA, Ph.D on LinkedIn. She is a Management Education and Research Professional based in Canada. Dr. Prema Chandran was also a faculty member at Karunya School of Management where I pursued by MBA. I am happy that I had an opportunity to be associated with her.

This blog talks about how we individuals often miss on small things when managing our finances.  We end up reading and following n number of books, advisory notes, sometimes we even end up paying for such services rendered through a broker or financial consultant. This blog throws light on some very basic steps on how can efficiently manage our finances. I absolutely loved reading this blog.  Few principles of managing money are taken from the Holy Bible and I felt that irrespective of one’s religious background they are quite applicable in today’s times. Hope you all like it.


Are you in a dilemma, thinking about how to manage your personal finances? Are you looking for some tips on money management? Have you started employment recently? If you answered yes to any of these questions, this article is for you.

Everyone wants financial freedom to take those important life decisions. Money is a necessity at all times. Money brings happiness and security. It is important to work hard, earn money and save some for the future. Many people find this task very daunting and have lost track of their financial well being.

Here you will come across some steps to keep practicing to be financially healthy. As you read on you will find quotes inserted in the passage. These are taken from my favorite book, ‘The Bible’, – the most authentic and authoritative book on a wide range of topics including money and finance. You can see that the Bible, as old as it has been, has a word or two about almost all the areas of money management much ahead of the time in which we are living. The principles related to managing money and finances are many. Let’s get started with a few that are universally applicable irrespective of your circumstances.

1.Save before you spend

Proverbs 21:20 (NIV) The wise store up choice food and olive oil, but fools gulp theirs down.

Proverbs 27:12 (NIV) The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and pay the penalty.

Many of us are used to saving the ‘leftovers’ after spending. However the right thing you should do is to set aside a small percentage of your income towards savings. It could be as low as five to ten percent of your earnings to start with. Once your savings for every month is defined, it is important now, to show consistency in putting this money aside. The money thus saved little by little, grows slowly and significantly to work for you for an emergency situation or to meet a future need, or even to live a contentious retirement life.

2.Put your money to use

Matthew 25:14-27 (NIV) 14 “Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his wealth to them. 15 To one he gave five bags of gold, to another two bags, and to another one bag, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. 16 The man who had received five bags of gold went at once and put his money to work and gained five bags more. 17 So also, the one with two bags of gold gained two more. 18 But the man who had received one bag went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.19 “After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. 20 The man who had received five bags of gold brought the other five. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with five bags of gold. See, I have gained five more.’21 “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’22 “The man with two bags of gold also came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with two bags of gold; see, I have gained two more.’ 23 “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’24 “Then the man who had received one bag of gold came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25 So I was afraid and went out and hid your gold in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’26 “His master replied, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? 27 Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest.

Money kept aside does not just work by itself. You need to understand first, that the money you have saved needs to be invested in order to multiply and grow. There are many ways to put your money to work. A simple savings account, fixed deposit or recurring account with a bank is a good start. As you continue to increase your savings, you will find more intermediate to complex investment avenues like mutual funds, equity shares and debt instruments, all of which have varied levels of returns and risk to satiate your financial appetite. The bottom line is to get your money to start working for you.

3.Diversify your investments

Ecclesiastes 11:2 (NIV) Invest in seven ventures, yes, in eight; you do not know what disaster may come upon the land.

In finance there is a concept called ‘risk-return’ relationship. This basically means that the more risk you are willing to take with your money, the more returns you could earn. Your savings may not be as ‘safe’ as you think when all of it is invested in one place. It becomes imperative therefore that you diversify and build what in financial terms is called a ‘portfolio’ of your investment that comprises a right mix of risk and return. So you can choose to invest a portion of your investment in equity shares that are considered very risky, another portion in government bonds that are secure, and also maintain a small ‘cash’ portion as a reserve for contingencies. Every individual’s situation is unique and therefore each person requires a personalized investment portfolio.

4.Plan your finances ahead

Proverbs 6:6-8 (NIV) Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander,  no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest.

Luke 14:28-30 (NIV) 28 “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it?29 For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, 30 saying, ‘This person began to build and wasn’t able to finish.’

Plans help you succeed financially. To start making plans, you could initially record weekly or monthly income and keep track of your daily expenses. This will help you over time to get a fair idea of where most of your money is being spent on. Once you have identified a regularity or a pattern, it becomes very easy to plan better. Remember, when you make your plan, the first item on the list should be your savings. All other spending should be from what remains in your income after saving.

5.Give generously

1 Timothy 6:17-19 (NIV) 17 Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment 18 Command them to do good, to be rich in good deed, and to be generous and willing to share. 19 In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.

Your blessing is for you to share. I believe God is the giver of everything good and that includes money also. God entrusts you with riches because of His supreme knowledge that you are sincere with small things. While this principle may not seem to be increasing your worldly wealth, it does certainly perpetuate your heavenly wealth.

6.Start saving now

Proverbs 10:4-5 (NIV) 4 Lazy hands make for poverty, but diligent hands bring wealth. 5 He who gathers crops in summer is a prudent son,but he who sleeps during harvest is a disgraceful son.

You stand a definite advantage if you start diligently saving at a younger age because of the length of time that you put your money to work as well as the power of Compounding. Nevertheless, it is never too late to start. NOW is the time you decide to start if you have not started already.

7.Avoid borrowing

Proverbs 22:7 (NIVThe rich rule over the poor,    and the borrower is slave to the lender.

One of the best things you could do for better money management is trying to avoid borrowing as much as possible. Many people get carried away with the overflowing offers for credit cards and loans, that over a period, debt suddenly becomes a burden too heavy to carry. The interest rates on loans could be ridiculously high if unnoticed. If you are already in debt, the wisest thing that do is to pay it all back as soon as you can little by little.

Final word

Every good habit requires a lot of perseverance and patience. If you keep in mind these simple steps and meticulously take an effort in this direction, I am sure financial success is yours to keep. Wishes for a healthy financial future!