Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse

I can think. I can wait. I can fast

The most important line from the book because a person who can think clearly in up and down of life and can wait patiently for the result of his deeds and can fast for his/her desires, food and action can achieve a lot of things in life.

Sharing some highlights from the book which are worth revisiting again and again

  • he doesn’t let anything enter his soul which might oppose the goal.

  • ‘Writing is good, thinking is better. Being smart is good, being patient is better.’

  • he learned from it to listen, to pay close attention with a quiet heart, with a waiting, everywhere at once, and that there is only the present time for it, not the shadow of the past, not the shadow of the future?’


System for Getting Things Done[GTD]

Recently my work requires me to organize my way of working. So to achieve it I was investigating some systems and have found a way which I am using from the past week. I would like to share with you all. A system that helps you to get things done.

Get things done [GTD] have five stages

  1. Collect
  2. Process
  3. Organize
  4. Review
  5. Engage


It means to find a place other than your brain to note down all the task which you want to accomplish. It can be on paper or in some digital form. Tasks can be checking email, calling a friend, etc.


In this stage, you have to ask yourself whether a task is actionable or not?. The answer to which is Yes or No. If it’s No keep it aside and if it is Yes ask yourself Can it be done in two minutes?. If yes then do it right away otherwise put the task in the action list.


Here you place the task from the action list in

  • Project
  • Time
  • Context


Group all the task which are similar, related to a particular project, personal work etc.


Put all the tasks here which are time-bound and need to be done by a fixed date and time.


Here go the tasks that are similar topics wise like video calls, writing a draft for the talk.

One task can be put in multiple categories after that you just have to prioritize the work based on this activity and start working.


You will find out whether you are moving towards your goal or away from it. It can be weekly or monthly basis to check how are you doing?. You can also involve other people to help you review your work.


Engage is the stage where you get things done and mark off the task from the action list.

So this is the system that I am using nowadays to get things done. I am also using Pomodoro Timer for focus and to stop context switching in between the work.


Notes: Letters to His Son on the Art of Becoming a Man of the World and a Gentleman, 1746-47 (Chesterfield, Philip Dormer Stanhope)

  • Go through the world with your eyes and ears open and mouth mostly shut. When new or stale gossip is brought to you, never let on that you know it already, nor that it really interests you.

  • Speaking and Writing, clearly, correctly, and with ease and grace, are certainly to be acquired, by reading the best authors with care, and by attention to the best living models.

  • A man is fit for neither business nor pleasure, who either cannot, or does not, command and direct his attention to the present object, and, in some degree, banish for that time all other objects from his thoughts.

  • There was nothing so easy; for that it was only doing one thing at a time, and never putting off anything till to-morrow that could be done to-day.

  • propos’ of letter-writing, the best models that you can form yourself upon are, Cicero, Cardinal d’Ossat, Madame Sevigne, and Comte Bussy Rebutin. Cicero’s Epistles to Atticus, and to his familiar friends, are the best examples that you can imitate, in the friendly and the familiar style. The simplicity and the clearness of Cardinal d’Ossat’s letters show how letters of business ought to be written;

  • At Vienna men always make courtesies, instead of bows, to the emperor; in France nobody bows at all to the king, nor kisses his hand; but in Spain and England, bows are made, and hands are kissed.


  • Complaisance and attention of others to your humors, your tastes, or your weaknesses, depend upon it the same complaisance and attention, on your part to theirs, will equally please them.

  • It shows me that you observe and inquire as you go, which is the true end of traveling.

  • But those who observe, and inquire into the situations, the strength, the weakness, the trade, the manufactures, the government, and constitution of every place they go to; who frequent the best companies, and attend to their several manners and characters; those alone travel with advantage; and as they set out wise, return wiser.

  • let nothing pass till you are sure that you understand it thoroughly; and accustom yourself to write down the capital points of what you learn.


Notes, Deep Work

Deep work is a great book to reveal the insights to increase your focus and help you to lay some solid foundation to start your deep focus journey. Carl has done a great job explaining the real strategy and examples, how one can start this journey in one’s life.

So I am starting to use some ways as describe in the book to start the deep focus journey. List will progress as I adapt the learning from the book in my life.

  • Removing the distraction from the work desk, space, where you work, should have all the essentials which are necessary for your work(water, paper, pens) and have no things which cause any time of distraction(Mobile phone, Rubik’s cube…).
  • Use time blocking to maintain your schedule, no excuse.
  • Be flexible with the schedule and also have buffers in the slots for any urgent task.
  • Avoid the craving of checking social media every few minutes, this all weakens the power of your deep work.
  • If your work allows, don’t rush to reply to Slack messages as soon as they pop, and should disable the pop-up notification. First I was confused about this then I have a call with my Co-Founder about that, he was cool with that :).
  • Always jot down the next day’s tasks with the time blocking so, you don’t have to waste the morning to layout out all the things. As in my case, I have not any visibility of the things beforehand, but do know the things which I have to initiate in the morning and have my time blocking thing ready and add up things as the day passes by.


How to speak ?

From the past few days I was exploring different resources and How’s to guide to improve my public skills and then stumble upon a great video How To Speak by Patrick Winston. So, here are my notes from that video, enjoy!

How to Start

  • Don’t start with a Joke.
  • Start with the promise by telling them the things they will know at the end of the talk.
  • Build a fence around your idea and be clear what you are going to talk about and should repeat it in the talk.
  • Ask question, this usually helps you to engage people present in the talk, remember that question should not be too easy or too hard.

Time and Space

  • Choose the time of the talk very wisely, so that people joining the talk should be energetic, avoid the time after the lunch as people will be a bit drowsy at that time.
  • Be Always comfortable with the space where you are going to talk, if necessary visit that place beforehand to get familiar with.
  • Space should be well lit.

Tool of the Trade

  • Board
  • Props


  • Remove unnecessary things from slides, it should have meaningful lines only.
  • Font size should be big enough.
  • Don’t read the slides while giving talk, always give time to the listener to read the slides.

How to Stop

  • Don’t end the slide with, Thank You.
  • End it with the contributions, or a Joke 🙂

~ Always remember that Knowledge and practice is greater than talent.


The Richest Man in Babylon- George S. Clason

This is work in progress notes for the book "The Richest man in Babylon"

  • Always keeps 1/10th of the income source for yourself, you got to have to paid yourself first and then spend rest on your needs.
  • Use this money to generate more money for yourself, you can invest this money on yourself by buying books, courses etc or with the advice of an expert invest this money so that it generate more money.
  • When you start earning money from the money you invested do not spend on things that you don’t needed but re-invest this money elsewhere.
  • You should learn to protect your money, a quote from book

    Misfortune loves a shining mark. Gold in a man’s purse must be guarded with firmness, else it be lost. Thus it is wise that we must first secure small amounts and learn to protect them before the Gods entrust us with largerv

  • The first sound principle of investment is security of the principal amount.

Year 2020

Ah! Last day of the last month of the year 2020. This year has been a roller coaster ride, it’s been an up and down year. Some highlights of life from the year 2020.

  • Started this year with a great party, followed by solitude to give a thought about the things to achieve this year.
  • After a long time celebrated the Holi festival with friends.
  • Then the whole world slows down or says stopped due to the COVID-19 virus. This eventually teaches me how to survive alone and take care of myself and enjoy life bit by bit.
  • Lost a friend to cancer and my aunt, this was the toughest time of the year.
  • Have to live for 6 months alone in Mumbai due to COVID-19, this whole experience teaches me a lot about myself, time management, cooking.
  • Learned how important is one’s physical and mental health to live a good life.
  • Put a system in place to spend more time reading and meditating.
  • Able to spare some time for my hobbies (calligraphy, sketching).
  • Purchase my first musical instrument a ukulele, nowadays spending sometime of the day with it.
  • Able to spend most of my time with the family rather than in front of screens.

So, let welcoming the year 2021 I am sure it will bring more hope and wisdom in our life.

adieu 🙂

— Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

Unposted Letter by Mahatria Ra

Success is in the big things.
Happiness is in the small things.
Meditation is in nothing.
God is in everything.
That’s Life

I picked this book randomly scrolling on amazon book suggestion page without much of thoughts but I am happy I have read this book, this is great self-book in which every chapter is a gem in itself and have made me think a lot about my behavior, continues thoughts coming in my head and how I interact/behaves with people around me. It helps me in self retrospection and has helped to improve overall personality, but still, there is a lot to be experienced in life.

Even some chapter heading from the book can put you in deep thinking about your life.

  • Consistent and never-ending self-improvement is the only way.
  • Without happiness, there is no life. Without dissatisfaction, there is no growth. Be happily dissatisfied.

I still remember the day when I was not feeling good about my current state and how things going around me, life was not going as planned feeling low at that time and have no one to talk about it, I just read few pages from the book and slept peacefully.

A must-read for the people who want to feel happy and I am sure everyone wants to :). Closing the post with a poem/quote from the book.

At birth, your life was a plain canvas.
Your potential is the colors.
Your choices are the stroke on the canvas.

At death, this canvas
will either be a treasured masterpiece
or an unnoticed scribbling.

That would be the judgment day
on how good a painter you were
in painting your life.