A life not defined by external achievements

In This Podcast
Show Notes
Srikumar Rao
E 49

In This Podcast

  • Nothing external will fulfill us
  • There is no separation between us
  • We live in “a” reality, not in “the” reality
  • Implementing resolutions by an effort of will doesn’t work
  • Leaders should be servant leaders
  • We have to mean what we say and do something about it

Dr. Srikumar Rao is one of the top MBA professors in the U.S, a legendary motivational teacher and a pioneer of practicing happiness. Today Srikumar talks about why nothing external will ever fulfill us, why we have to understand that we are all connected, why we should be able to recognize that we live in “a” reality, not in “the” reality, how to correctly deal with resolutions, why servant leadership is important, and why we have to mean what we say and do something about it.

Show Notes

The spiritual quest we must all pursue

We all want things. We have this belief that we are incomplete and that something external will fulfill us. Typically, if someone is ambitious, bright, and educated, they desire success, fame, and money. People believe that by getting these things they will be happy. For a while, this might be true, but it doesn’t last. Very soon they find out that they want something else.

We keep pursuing one goal after the other. When we pursue goals with the objective of becoming happy, that doesn’t work. Srikumar’s work is all about becoming happy without being attached to some external accomplishment.

He also wants people to understand that the sense of separation between us is an illusion. Deep down we are all connected. When we realize that, we experience true, neverending joy. It’s a spiritual quest.

Deconstructing our world in order to build a new one

The only thing we do in life is work on ourselves. It’s good to do it consciously rather than unconsciously. We get to make fewer errors and we also get to recognize that when we do make a mistake, this is part of our journey.

What many companies currently believe in is that you have to maximize shareholder wealth and  income. Companies have lost sight of the fact that their primary purpose is to solve a problem. However, the millennials are no longer putting up with the old business model. They are demanding something different.

Srikumar wants people to understand that the world we live in is not the real world, we constructed it with our mental chatter and our mental models.

“When we understand that we live in ‘a’ reality, not in ‘the’ reality, we can deconstruct the parts that we don’t like and start all over.”

Leadership done right

When you try to implement resolutions by an effort of will, you do violence to yourself. The process that Srikumar developed enables people to make significant changes that last.

Too often our leaders seem very busy figuring out what they can do so that their organization prospers, but their real intent is “How can I get ahead in my organization?” They have a tendency to view other people as mechanisms for their own benefit.

Leaders should be servant leaders. They should realize that it’s their job to serve the customers, their team members, their vendors, and their shareholders. It’s a balancing act where you have to make sure that all of these parties are receiving what they need in order to become better human beings.

It’s important for everyone to decide to be of service to the people around them

It’s important for everyone to realize that we really are in charge of remaking the world. We should start focusing on how we can help improve the human condition. We get to decide how, to whom, and how much we want to be of service. If we all made this decision, the world would be a better place.

The media is in the business of selling attention, because they make their money advertising. It’s in their interest to play up things that make you fearful. It’s the nature of the media and we have to be able to recognize that.

What does the world need the most right now? People who mean what they say and they do something about it. We need more “I have a dream”-type leaders.