On Being ME!

Hey All

I really wanted to Audioboo yesterday because yesterday was my birthday. But, somehow the brainstorming session lead to this blog post. I have completed 24 years of my lifetime on Planet Earth without any sort of Alien Abduction craps! With zillions of job applications & rejections for almost 1 and half years, I really didn’t know how to react for my birthday???

Many people wished me good … Family, friends, couple of people whom I really don’t know who the heck they are … One call really moved me! I felt so proud!

Here’s the thing … When I interact with people, I’m asked the same questions again and again. Like, “Do you have cold or something?” or “Are you havin’ soar throat?” For which, I always answer “NO!” because for simple reason I don’t have them! Duh!

I called my best friend yesterday. I was pumped up to talk to him again after almost 3 months. We had a great chat and when it was time to end our telephonic conversation, he asked me “Ridwan, What’s bothering you? I know your voice! What’s going on?” I was stunned! He’s in Chennai and I’m in London.  My best friend was able to read my mind by just listening to my voice. Many people have some theories about me. But, my best friend knows me better than anybody else because I’m never afraid to “be myself” around him.  And, that conversation made my day!

I learned, with lots of social programming out there! I will always have my best friend to be just ME!

PS: That was clicked right after a good hair-cut and a hot bath! ;)

Positivity or Actions

Few days ago, I did a post on being positive and kinda carried away with that “boasting” time when I penned down my thoughts. I wanted this post to be a critical one with that idyllic euphoria of “Attitude is everything” scribble.

Maybe this positive thinking does have some effect on our physiology. Although our conscious mind is aware that the underlying emotions are pretty much congruent with the reality, but we are always taught to dress the wounds without treating the actual cause. To put it on skeptical terms, this “Positive Thinking” is a cheap “legal high”! :P

So, what did this “legal high” has done to me in the last couple of days? Well, to be honest, I kinda felt better. I did some stuff which even now I still get some butterflies in my stomach viz., using the telephone! For a stutterer, it’s pretty daunting. But, my audacity of hope that I will do better, did manage to get me an interview for a part-time job as a “Customer Service Assistant”. Now, to be critical, does that mean I didn’t face any setback? Nope, I did stutter pretty heavily when I did that cold-calling because I didn’t know what to expect from those people? Imagine the situation like going to a battlefield with your hands tied. I was in that kinda situation. Whatever, I felt much better after every call. I kinda became narcissitic!!! :P

Jokes apart, you guys gotta try out this “feeling good about yourself” thing. It’s there within us. Just like how we could miss out the SMS alert tone of an important text message, yet taking the necessary steps as directed by that message when we find about it later. We need these kinds of little “hope” shots to see what we might have missed out and take some actions to steer us back to our goals. ;)

All in all, it was a rough week with just one good thing. But, hey, this positivity coupled with a definite action-plan could do something in our lives. Even though, it’s tough to maintain during a rough patch. :)

I’m still skeptical whether to ascribe this little success entirely to my positivity (like all the “Attitude is everything” fellas :P), when my actions have done the trick. ;)

What do you think? Positivity or Actions? Which is the right thing?

:)

The Much Needed Paradigm Shift

Hey All! Finally, it’s November and the year end is around the corner. Traveling down my memory lane, 2009 was a sorta “I don’t know, what’s going on?” kinda year for me. But, for our family, this was an important year. My sister’s marriage was held on 28th May in Kilakarai, Tamil Nadu, India.

The reason what made to write about this entire year is not because Barack Obama was sworn in as the 44th President of the USA or the UK fell into recession or the world in general; the actual reason is to have a self-introspection on my thinking processes itself. When I analyze my entire thought process in the year 2009, to be blunt, I was pretty much demotivated and frustrated with my job hunt. Unconsciously, I started to beating myself up and throwing away many things which I possessed and grateful for viz., my dad’s optimism, confidence, goal-oriented, ability to inspire people around me, and my very own writing skills. :P

TigerMan, sometimes even Panthera tigris needs someone to tell him that he is majestic, fierce and commanding on the outside, yet noble and discerning on the inside. Yesterday, I had a moment for that sorta introspection on my thought process after a chat with my friend, Pam (@stutterrockstar). The session was little over an hour. During that time, I had a mock interview, some thought-provoking questionnaires to answer and few other baby-steps en route for my job pursuit.

So what did I learn from the session? First things first, I got the much needed paradigm shift. I realized that there is no use in whining about how bad things are and the rejections that I get quite often. I realized that, there is a connection between my thought processes and the actions that I take based on those thoughts. I realized that, there is really a buffer where I can make a choice to be proactive and positive.

Therefore, on this very new month of November 2009. I have made a commitment to be proactive, confident and optimistic as usual. Moreover, this pledges to myself; I guess, will enable me to experience the adrenaline and an interesting blog post in month-end. So, let us wait and watch the play. ;)

:)

Sales Trainee – Is this the job that I want?

A couple of days ago, I applied for a Sales & Marketing job based here in Glasgow. I was not pretty sure whether I wanted this job or not. But, I applied for it. You know, just to see whether my CV is in the interview-winning format or just a piece of junk. Anyways, I got a call from that company on Monday 26th October. They said they wanted to have an informal chat to find out about me and give me an opportunity to find out them. So, the interview was setup on Tuesday 27th October at 1:20 PM. Since the job was all about Sales & Marketing, you need to be formal, smart and presentable; I was very formal in my attire. And, what really freaked me out is that the other interviewees were in semi-formal or casual attire! I was like George Carlin amongst the College of Cardinals!!!

So, what happened to that interview? As usual, I got DUMPED!!!  The funny part is that when the HR person called me to say that my application will not be taken forward and blah blah blah; I replied “OK thanks, I’m speaking to my aunt right now. No problems, Thanks!” and hung up. After a couple of minutes, I realized that I didn’t ask them why my application was not taken forward. But, I just shrugged and said myself “Whatever!!!”

And, how really did I perform in the interview? I think I did a reasonably good job. I talked about my background, qualifications, skills and transferable experiences that I have; which could fit me into the job. Basically, I tried to reproduce the “Job Description” with what I have to offer for the company.

I pretty much had all the trite questions of an interview. There were 2 questions which really made me excited and I kinda talked a lot about those. One was about “Living in Scotland” and the other was about my recent interest in “Blogging”. I coupled the answers and talked about my Scottish Highlands Tour post in the blog and what all I learned, stuttering and our twitter group and blah blah blah. I guess, the interviewer was quite impressed. But still; bottom line: – Nothing Happened! I was rejected!

On October, 25 2009 I received a caring and warm advice from my friend, Pam (@stutterrockstar) and my Dad  also says the same thing viz., to stay positive and focus on what I want and all those usual tit-bits and pep-talk. Basically, I am an optimistic guy and I am really overwhelmed and grateful for all those love and affection that I receive from the people whom I know. But, nothing is working!!!

I tried to make this post to be sarcastic and funny. But, my emotions are still raw and vetoed. Yet, I am optimistic without a cinch of doubt! ;) So! What am I gonna do now? Business as usual! Keep applying for the jobs & keep hoping for a break!!! Cheers!!!

:)

Scottish Highlands Tour

Hey Ya!

It’s been quite a long time since my last post. I kinda had a great time and an equal amount of not so great time last week. But, all in all, it was good. Because, I come up with materials for my blog! :P

October 16, 2009 was a happy day for me. My father & his colleague arrived here in Glasgow en route to Amsterdam. Like a good son, I welcomed them into my apartment and made sure they are comfortable and taken care of. I personally think, I’m really good at hospitality. It’s a tradition in our family on special occasions, we make a non-veg dish. So, I made Chicken Curry and Rice which was quite easy to cook except the chicken cleaning, dicing onions and cleaning after the cooking ordeal. They liked my cooking. I was glad they did. Then, the real fun part popped out. My dad wanted to go for a day trip to the Scottish Highlands. After the initial ramblings over different tour operators and places to visit stuffs, we settled for Rabbie’s Loch Ness, Glencoe & the Highlands Day Tour. The reason we chose them is because we didn’t have any other options! :P But, we never thought, it would be the BEST trip we have ever had! And, without further delay, a gist of the good times follows below. ;)

Dad & I waiting for the Scottish Highland TourOctober 17, 2009 – 8 am – Sipping Costa coffee (Sorry, Starbucks! I said to my dad “Let’s try Costa” :P) in the cold and windy Scottish weather, we were waiting to embark our “Scotland in a day” tour to the majestic yet beautiful Rannoch Moor mountain ranges, scenic Glencoe village, various Lochs & Glens and finally to the place of the world’s best-ever fairytale of the Loch Ness and it’s monster.

The Loch By 8:30 am, after all routine checking and welcoming and other mundane stuffs, we set out for a fascinating road trip which I never ever imagined or expected. My penchant for traveling and history was revived by our tour guide Mr. David Marshall Campbell. Our Scotsman was so good in his Scottish History, I listened to him in awe! Not because of the heroic historical figures like William Wallace or Robert the Bruce that he talked about or how the Scots could be so strong against the armed might of the Romans or the Vikings. I was amazed by how he made all those historical events and figures so amusing which made me to ask him a lot of questions instead of what many people out there would do during a history class; SLEEP!!!

Tour Guide DavidOur tour passed the picturesque Tyndrum village overshadowed by the Ben Lui mountains, breathtaking Loch Tulla, magnificent and historically important Glencoe where the clan massacre of the MacDonalds by the Campbells took place in 1692 and apparently, our tour guide was a Campbell too! And, after that first leg of our tour, we passed through various historically important sites along Fort William before entering the “Great Glen” which comprises of pristine fresh water bodies viz. Loch Linnhe, Loch Lochy, Loch Oich, Loch Dochfour and most importantly the Loch Ness, the largest freshwater reservoir in the United Kingdom. Those places were the gory Highland Clearances took place. Just like how the retail stores force their useless and unsold stock on customers as “Stock Clearance Sale”, these highland clearances were responsible for the forced displacement of many Scottish Highlanders to various parts of Scottish Lowlands and other parts of the world during the 18th and 19th centuries.

Dad & I at Loch TullaFinally, we reached the Loch Ness flowing through the Caledonian Canal at Fort Augustus. We stopped for a cruise in Loch Ness and for lunch. The sailor of the cruise boat was talking about the historical importance of the places, castles and other stuffs on either sides of the Loch Ness. But, who cared! We were all busy taking pictures!!! It’s was so rejuvenating to be with Nature. After having some real Scottish food (Fish and Chips) for lunch, we started our return journey to Glasgow through various other important sites like the Commando Memorial which was used by the British Commandos for training during the World War II. After spending a couple of minutes at the memorial, we continued our return to Glasgow and suddenly an improbable thing happened; I slept!!! :( The final leg of our tour began when we stopped at a small town, Pitlochry for evening snacks and refreshments. By the time, we neared the famous William Wallace Monument and Stirling Castle, it was pitch black. But, we managed to High Five these stellar architectural marvel on the way.

Lochness MonsterWe reached Glasgow around 8:30pm, completely exhausted but with sweet memories of our trip, our co-travelers and our tour guide, David Marshall Campbell.

:)

Scottish Graduate Fair – A new beginning or just a mundane affair!

Hey Ya!!!

Today was really an interesting day. The so-called highlight of the recruitment season, The Scottish Graduate Fair 2009 was held. I attended the fair, just like any other graduate who is desperate for a job. The majority of the fair exhibitors were the same guys from last year, whom I had met, spoken and applied to their graduate schemes. Since I knew about the companies and their graduate programs, it really didn’t excite me when they talked about their companies and opportunities for graduates. And, I found it very hard to stay motivated.

Anyways, it has been a long time since I have updated my Rejection Database. Here’s the latest list:-

#

Date

Job Title

Company

64

22/9/2009

Control Systems Trainee

Partners for Endoscopy Ltd

65

23/9/2009

Graduate Electronics Engineer

Firstco

66

25/9/2009

Trainee Machine Engineer

Watkiss Automation

67

25/9/2009

Trainee Electrical Engineer

Promtek Ltd

68

27/9/2009

Graduate Data Analyst

Understanding Recruitment

69

28/9/2009

Graduate Design Engineer

Go Escape Recruitment

70

29/9/2009

Graduate Engineer

Pipe Coil Technology Ltd

71

29/9/2009

Graduate Research Assistant

Aquamarine Power

72

1/10/2009

Apprentice Engineer

Assured Mobility Ltd

73

2/10/2009

Engineer

Peek Traffic Ltd

74

5/10/2009

Production Controller

Morson International

75

5/10/2009

Trainee Project Engineer

ATA Selection

76

5/10/2009

Instrumentation Engineer

Synergi

77

5/10/2009

Electrical Engineer

Scotrenewables Ltd

78

5/10/2009

Electronic Design Engineer

Honeywell

79

7/10/2009

Electronic Design Engineer

Partech

80

7/10/2009

Sales and Support Engineer

B&S Group Ltd

81

7/10/2009

Speculative Application

FMC Technologies

82

7/10/2009

Trainee Production Engineer

FPR Tech

I just don’t have much to write. Emotionally, I am in a big mess. But, I will come back! Well, whatever crazy things happen in my life; this insane thought of hope is at least there.

:)

The Skeptic in Me

It really amazes me how avid bloggers come up with new posts every time. I am finding it really difficult to write new stuffs each and every time. I wanted to write on various topics, some serious enough like Pet Love, Movies, Music, Twitter, Facebook etc and trivial issues like Stuttering, Job Hunt, Politics, Science, Critical Thinking, Environmental Obsession, War on XYZ (you can fill up anything you want and at least one country will be in war with that! :P) Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize etc. If you had read my That’s Me page, I wrote “This is my place to be myself”. But now, I second-guess my thoughts. I think like “Is OK to mention this? Or Can I write about that? Or Can I be more open on my viewpoints?”

Environmentalism

The reason why I am talking about this is that, I think I have an innate inquirer’s mind. During my childhood days, I would always question about many traditional belief systems, personalities, politics etc. And, my Dad comes back with either of these two questions. One, “Why are you criticizing everything?” Two, “Why don’t you look at the positive side?” I go for a rebuttal by telling him, “Dad, A critic is a person who knows the value of Nothing! (Well! Actually I read that somewhere! :P)” I love my Dad and I really liked to ask tough questions to him.

Penn and Teller

I really didn’t know why I am questioning all the age old stuffs and what makes me to do that until the late 2007, I stumbled upon some Youtube videos of Penn and Teller and James Randi. Out of serendipity, I exclaimed “Man! That’s might be what I am! I might be a Skeptic!” The Farlex Dictionary defines skeptic as “One who instinctively or habitually doubts, questions, or disagrees with assertions or generally accepted conclusions.” When I mull over on the various subjects taught during my school days like United Nations, World Peace, Environmental Pollution, Renewable Energy, Global Warming, Green House Emissions, Logging and other “sensationalized” topics. I always wondered “Why do these textbook authors dramatize the effects?” Although, I didn’t get proper explanations from my teachers; Creative Writing of my English class was a great opportunity to question those issues. (My English teacher liked my arguments. But, I always got average grades because I sucked in grammar and I think I still do! :P)

My final thoughts are; coming from a conservative background on various topics, it took me a lot of time and research to understand who I am and what makes me to think from a different frame of reference. Like how stuttering perplexes the medical world, my innate mind still befuddles me!

Have you guys ever faced these kinda situations in your lives? Do share your thoughts.

:)