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Chapter discussion: So think you are Brand! Ask Vinita Vyas!

A simple question: How often do you Improvise in this quest to become a dependable and reliable brand? Brand You-Reinventing The Theatre Way penned by my good friend Vinita Vyas, corporate trainer, NLP and Theater Actor is not a self-help book but an experiment of carefully nurtured training over the years on what makes The You into Brand You.


In the chapter Self Awareness: What is Your Brand Story?, Vinita narrates on Being Mindful on delivering, be it dialogue, human interaction or selling a product matters. How does one maximize emotional intelligent by staying in the moment? The chapter is insightful and helps a person to be present in the moment, advocating on efforts to be likable. The best thing about Vinita how she lends substance to the word IMPROV and the need to pay attention and understanding emotional seeds sown during human interaction. It’s all about the bond, isn’t it!

There may not be many but few people who have such an ever lasting impact on us during two minutes conversation. I can recollect this interaction with the souls having a gentle but powerful impact in their approach, human and gentle yet means business. I remember a couple of weeks met a former and well respected banker during an interview and how the charisma-he wore the heart on the sleeve-had such a huge impact on me.

Vinita aptly says that the first time we meet someone is the right moment to create an impression paving the way for credibility. I say, Bang On! What is that when we walk in a place pocked with people, we desire people warming up to us. The trick lies in being a Brand and boasting about down-to-earth qualities making us relatable as someone to be trusted. Honestly, this is one of the areas which I lack and it’s overwhelming in approaching a stranger to converse. I suck at it.  I wish to add that networking is grossly overrated and what matters is connecting, bonding and nurturing relationships.

In the world of EQ and IQ, Vinita coins LQ standing for Likeability Quotient, teaching us that as uniquely creative individuals, USP and Brand You matters more than anything else.

“We interact with people we like; We acknowledge them, promote them, and even go out of the way for them. So, naturally, we want them to succeed. Isn’t it.”

Likeability is about competence and I firmly believe in our inherent capacity to listen as caring souls in today’s world. Vinnie lists a few universal rules of likeability to each and every person, that has the possibility to make an unpolished diamond shine as a reputable brand:


-We like people who like us.


-We like people who are like us.


-We like people who can teach us without preaching.


-We like people who lift our spirits.


-We like people who pay attention to us.


-We like people who are approachable.


-We like people who are genuine and appreciative.


-We like people with whom we associate positive feelings.


-We like people who are genuinely courteous.


-We like people who we are familiar with.


-We like people who don’t take themselves very seriously.


The exercises on Likeability is very helpful for us to up the game and practice serves as the reminder to push towards the cliff on the edge. I need to buck up for at times I am gullible and not perceived as too likeable, according to the test.


“They say that knowledge is not enough…willing is not enough.”

The key remains Image Aspects, Leadership Aspects and Relationship Aspects in turning into a brand and how about a small exercise on what makes you into a “household name” in communication your core values as a person. Just try it out. I am yet to do it. What I like is how Vinita says that we are all actors in daily life and dealing with co-actors where the end result is, ultimately, the efficient delivery of the end product. What an idea Sirjee!

It’s the sharing of snippets from chapters and not a book review. Every fortnight, I will bring a new chapter on Reinventing Brand You and today marks a special day for it’s Vinita’s birthday. Join me in wishing the extraordinary and feisty soul a Happy birthday. If this chapter speaks to you, click on Amazon to get your copy. It’s not a book but a sacred thread and prayer on What makes the You in You a Brand.




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Photo fiction: The White Bench and a silent love



The picture belongs to my friend in UK Chavan and sent to me by Whatsapp.

The countryside was deserted. The silver water wore a stillness, echoing the marooned lovers escape in the garden. Windy breeze chimed past the steps in the valley trawling on the heels in distinct direction to the unknown. Nightfall obscured the foot traces disappearing in the flick of dust.

Deepti sat on the white-coated wooden bench and admiring the blue colored basket, hanging on top holding roses and plants. The happy place dissipating her worries at night and in the sunny afternoon, peace flowed and soothed the senses. She cherished sitting on the bench and fingers caressing the paint, exuding happiness and sensation running deep inside her vein. It was her way of making peace with everything, the lack of love and uttering no words, just still and smile coruscating her face.

No words make for seamless conversation with colors, plants and dazzling beauty surrounding the soul. One evening, Deepti sneaked away from her house and saw something which took her heart away. She fumed, “How dare he! Who told him.” Jealousy wore thin on her face and seething with rage. The sight of a dude, dressed casually in blue denim and white shirt, splaying on the favorite white coated bench was too much to take. She turned away and left. He spotted her and flailed his hand but was speechless.

It didn’t stop Deepti from flocking to her favorite place every single day and longing for the guy who stole her bench and space last night. On days, he came and she hid behind the foliage, watching him silently. He longed for the mysterious and beautiful girl. There was something intriguing and he craved for her sight,

Destiny smiled one mist evening. Eyes met and smile concealed. Deepti nodded at him. He traipsed slowly to sit on the favorite bench, separated by a closing distance. Fawny eyes and sensation dripping inside the skin. No words were exchanged yet hesitancy and awkwardness became a sight, longing for each other, fiddling with hands. Lethal silence hurt harder than the tipping point of the arrow and knife’s edge, killing them every second. The bench and plants mushrooming witnessed the craving, disappointment and bruise when one of them didn’t turn in time.  He was excited and wanted to ask her name. Frantic heart beat and she was dying to pop the question, wiping the tear with her finger, dreading the day when the wouldn’t see each other’s sight. This thought killed them every second.

He was besotted by her charm and the ease with which she flitted to sit on the bench. She smiled and winked behind his back when he walked, pretending to feign her presence. Days and months, taking them forever to walk together when the wind blew and branches fluttered, the rendez vous time.  Hearts bloomed in silence and not a single word was exchanged. They flowered the single rose in the basket, sowing the seed of love.


Post Script: The picture was sent by my good friend Chavan from UK and he sent me this one for the blog. The idea of fiction cropped and the amazing shot of the white bench turned into a silent love story.





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Fog, cold and misery

Foggy evening,

chilly cold,

shivering skin,

ruffled feathers,

lone soul,

trodding on the tip,

homeless lying on the pavement,

in search of the blanket,

and a single wish,

to save itself from the icy sensation,

shaking and coiling,

human snake is a bane,

in the deadly winter whistle,

torn apart,

craving for a hot drink,

not a dime to spare,

the palace’s luxury,

fancy and colorful blankets,

not a thought for the miserable,

clinking expensive scotch and brandy.


With love




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How often do you Hug?

How often do you Hug? Embracing a close friend brings emotional warmth, joy and soothes the nerves in the body cell, albeit playing a huge part in releasing the hormone oxytocin. Research has shown that 20 seconds hug plays a huge part to bring not only a sense of calm but cements bond among loved ones and friends, offering seamless happiness to souls, rekindling closeness and love.

We live in stressful times and crack easily at the slightest trigger of anger, emotional upheaval and overwhelming situations beyond human control. Life often gets to us and we often take our loved ones for granted. So, is hug which we overlook yet it creates everlasting happiness. Hug a tree if you may. I am a hug person who doesn’t think twice in embracing a friend, similar to a tight handshake. I hug well and doesn’t hold my emotions. It’s all about giving love and when I hug, doesn’t keep anything inside me. Love isn’t all about giving 100 percent. I am a person who wears my heart on my sleeve and hug is an intrinsic part in my definition of showering affection.

I don’t like kissing people on the cheek but hug is my way to greet. However, I feel we have lost this art of hugging and ask how many of you hug daily to alleviate not just stress or emotional burnout but connecting hearts. Being expressive is therapeutic in itself to dissolve our worries and at times, we get conscious by holding on to our emotions which are not poured enough to the other person. Hug does the trick and trust me, it’s such an aha, magical feeling in smearing love all over. Try it out. Hugging makes the soul complete and bridges the gap in relations with friends drifting apart as a result of distance which is normal.

All we need is a little bit of love to make our worries disappear out of thin air. I miss hugging people who have been an important part of my life and it’s like the fresh air or much-needed energy that spring us into action to achieve the extraordinary and weathering all kind of storms. Honestly, I remember hugging a friend who came down from UK last month, bonding over drinks and conversation. Remember Jhadu ki Jappi in Munna Bhai MBBS and how he won hearts in the medical campus, spreading love and laughs.

Nothing can replace a warm hug and having healing powers to nurse the scars, making our battles worthwhile,  and giving this inner strength to fight the harrowing trials we face from time-to-time. I often remember fondly and smiling at the hugs in the college days that was a daily affair. True, I miss those days but it brings a smile to my face every time, giving me the serum, leaping in happiness and jetissoning me to tackle the day. Remember your Hugs. Never shy in hugging the loved ones.



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Untold tale of rain

A drop of rain,

priceless tear,

enraptured memory,

celebrating joy and sadness,

erupting in unequal measure,

tilted balance of haziness,

wiping scars,

rattled branches,

black umbrellas splaying single inch in the city,

forever on the move,

battling arrow of water,

a dejected lover nursing a breakup,

wailing baby crying for milk,

a torn soul,

a splash of monsoon,

bringing hearts together,

fighting the battles,

marching ahead on the potholes,

Mumbai’s swan song,

clouded sky exuding creamy layer,

thick black smoke conquered,

blessings doesn’t knock,

grey sky,

untold tales,

enmeshed inside our hearts.




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A broken heart!

Dreams lost forever

carried with the winds,

washed forever,

running away from myself!

For how long!

Going back in time is not an option!

Fate is!

Light, camera and action,


haunting the ear drums and souls,

the ‘Bollywoodish’ dream,

I am a failure,

a reminder how passion falls flat on the face.

why it happens!

what we wish for never comes true,

not unrequited love,

not for money and conquering the world,

imagination of capturing my lost audience,

truth hurts and breaks the heart into smithereens,

i want to be humiliated,

regrets insulting my soul,

so be it!

today destiny knocked me down,

reminding i am a nobody and non-entity,

dreams are made to be broken,

how I wish!

having time on my hands!

emotional wreck,

a sinking ship,

got not right to taste success,

for never earned it!

you may soothe my soul,

nurture false hopes in me,

I know the ultimate truth,

it hurts,

the angst and pain,

voice of the ghost,

flinging me to reality,

today i learned it,

coming to terms perhaps,

for there is no permanent closure,

one day it the wound will end,

seeking no sympathy,

death will the closure of my suffering,

With love




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Book Review: 26 days 26 Ways for a Happier You” by Priyanka Nair

What if you had only 26 Days left to live and create ultimate happiness?  These are questions answered by first-time author Priyanka Nair in her book, “26 Days 26 Ways for a Happier You” sharing small snippets and hinging on personal experiences, barring her soul open when she faced unhealthy criticism and overcoming both mental and physical challenges. As one reads the book, a realization dawns upon that life is no rocket science or a mountain of impossibilities to trudge upon in our quest to elevate towards a path of growth.

The author’s 26 days challenge doesn’t beat around the bush where she advocates the need to take ownership of one’s mental health in accepting our own truth and implying there is no point shirking away from the challenges life often flung at us. An inference is made during her initial blogging days and tirade of criticism from Society. Yes, right! Society is never happy at what we do and staking a claim into our lives as if it’s their inherent self-entitlement to enter uninvited into our life.

In the chapter, Criticism, Priyanka discusses the vital importance of lifting others and gently reminding on creating a movement towards a healthy relationship and pledging to refrain from criticizing others. Criticism, particularly unproductive and unhealthy ones, can dampen spirits and it’s a small thing that we don’t realize how negativity can break someone.

We often shy away from addressing Depression and it’s something Real. A need to understand D for Depression and it’s not about the finer nuances, bearing an uncanny resemblance to a film playing in front of us. Depression is explained in a simple manner, the reasons underlying it and we can help people going through a rough patch by simply listening, asking real questions in a soft manner and be present in offering help. The lines can often be blurred but what we need is a sensitive heart to help someone facing the inner demons.

The Five S, Sort, Set in Order, Shine, Standardize and Sustain belonging to an ancient Japanese culture is often resorted by organizations to boost productivity.  Why not in personal life, she asks! After all, our characters are often molded by lessons and a tale about learning, unlearning and re-learning. The Five Ss are explained by asking questions and answering them in simplicity while practicing breathing techniques and small exercises. It whittles down to the Self, the Me and the You where Priyanka brings to the fore an effective technique KISS (Keep it simple stupid) taking into account she is an MBA person who witnessed the managerial technique to boost prospect on how individuality can be tapped to align with a team’s success.

Priyanka Joshi author.

We are unpolished diamonds. Priyanka Joshi doesn’t swat away questions troubling us and facing the inner fears is something she doesn’t flinch from asking. Judge mentality and judge meter may be society’s yardstick in putting subjective views about people they know zilch about. The right nail is hit about personal struggles outside our ambit but we make no bones in judging others.

She infers on her personal experience in her interacting with a lady in her 30s with a baby who spoke hardly to anyone which led her to face the ire of society. This chapter is the biggest lesson one can ever learn on the person’s struggles and battles, facing paralysis for four years but that didn’t deter her from conceiving a child. For me, this is pure strength and just imagine the unwanted advice to dampen her spirits. It’s about human triumph.

One of the chapters closest to my heart is Mental Arguments. I am not going to lie but have beaten people or insulting them mentally. It’s the vilest form of a mental disturbance where many of us are often at the receiving end. Of course, the guilt wears thin and this everlasting conversation cum assessment keeps roiling at the back of the mind. The author offers various ways to overthrow the mental argument, relying on acceptance and practicing meditation helps a lot to deal with this forever stress.

The chapters, Lack of Sleep, Overcoming Fears and Poisoned Thoughts or Log Kya Kahenge Syndrome or Unsolved Question Papers and how Holding us Back may resemble a product of social construct but what’s needed are small steps to thwart negative or unwanted emotions.  Priyanka Joshi’s book, “26 dAYS 26 Ways for a Happier You” is a commendable attempt, honest and one of a kind in taking things in a conversational tone, often the voice of a long lost friend to understand us without casting value judgment. It serves as a reminder, that everything will be fine and how special, wanted and extraordinary we are. This book, I shall not call it a handbook, is easy to read, relatable and something to have on your e-shelf for every time you are plagued by toxicity, it will reach out to you.

You can connect with Priyanka Joshi on Virtual Siyahi, and Facebook. The book is available for download here.