Wednesday, November 20, 2013

All about Bhartiya Mahila Bank - India's first All-Women Bank



The country’s first all-women commercial bank, the Bhartiya Mahila Bank (BMB), was inaugurated on Tuesday. The inauguration took place in Mumbai, and the event was graced by Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, Congress Chairperson Mrs. Sonia Gandhi, the Finance Minister Mr. P. Chidambaram and the RBI Governor Mr. Raghuram Rajan among other dignitaries. With this, the BMB commenced operations across seven branches. 

Some important highlights about the Bhartiya Mahila Bank:

  1. The BMB is the first public sector bank created by the Government of India. All other PSU banks such as SBI were, to begin with, private banks and were later nationalized. 
  2. The bank was launched with a corpus of Rs. 1000 Cr.
  3. The interest offered by BMB is as high as 4.5 % for savings accounts up to Rs. 1 lakh and 5 % for savings accounts beyond Rs. 1 lakh.
  4. The total business for BMB is forecasted to grow to 60,000 Cr. by 2020. Also, the number of branches will to 25 by mid 2014 and 770 branches by 2020.
  5. It will lend to women or to businesses which are either managed by or make products for women.
  6. The Bank will be headed by Usha Ananthsubramanian and will have an eighth member board  comprising members such as Tanya Dubash daughter of Adi Godrej, Kalpana Saroj, chairperson of Kamani Tubes, Chhavi Rajawat, the Harvard educated sarpanch of Soda village in Rajasthan and Nupur Mitra, ex-chairman of Dena Bank.
  7. The Bank will be headquartered in Delhi.

More than half of India’s population remains unbanked. Only 26% of women in India admit to having a bank account. The primary purpose of the BMB is financial inclusion of India's unbanked rural women. Also, one of the biggest issues faced by women is the problem of pledging collaterals against loans. The BMB aims to address this issue by offering collateral-free loans of up to Rs 1 crore to women.
     
     Let us all hope that the Bhartiya Mahila Bank succeeds in its noble cause of financially aiding the women of our country. Indeed, the success of a nation lies in the success of its women.

- Sufiyan Sarguroh
  SIMSREE Finance Forum
 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

ARTHNEETI SEPTEMBER 2013 ISSUE



6 weeks is a short time, very short indeed, if you are considering the macroeconomic situation in India at least. The last six weeks have demonstrated how from virtually the onset of economic crisis, the macroeconomic situation recovered, so much so that the benchmark SENSEX is close to breaching the highest points recorded in history. There is a sense of confidence in the Finance Ministry and the RBI. Confidence is certainly commendable, but it must not turn into complacency.

The Artheenti September issue will take you through what really happened in the last 2 months, the fallout points, the emerging positives of late, and the path ahead. This publication also consists of articles on relevant and contemporary issues such as “Impact of QE Tapering on world growth” and “Rupee on a downhill yatra. But for how long?”. We also have an article from our alumnus Joiel Akilan of the 1994 batch on “Lessons for Team India Inc“. Also, we have published an interview with Mr. Kewal Handa who has served as the Managing Director at Wyeth Limited and Pfizer Limited. He shares his immense knowledge and insights on the pharmaceutical sector. To conclude, we have an article on “Dependence of Indian Markets on FIIs“ by the SIMSREE Finance Forum.
To continue reading, Click Here.
Happy Reading!
-          Team Arthneeti

Sunday, October 6, 2013

FISCUS '13


FISCUS 2013 : India and China – The New Torch Bearers of World Economy

5th October 2013 is a date that all SIMSREE students will remember for a long time. Through FISCUS ’13 – the annual financial summit of the institute - it was an honor and a privilege to have with us the stalwarts of finance in the corporate world. The theme for this year’s FISCUS was ‘India and China: The new Torch Bearers of World Economy’.
Mr. Seshagiri Rao – the joint Managing Director and group CFO for JSW Steel – was the Chief Guest. Mr. Atul Joshi – the Managing Director and CEO at India Rating and Research (a Fitch Group Company) – was the Key Note speaker for the event. The eminent panelists for the discussing the topic were Mr. Pramod Kasat – head of investment banking team at Investacorp and an alumnus of SIMSREE (batch of 1993); Mr. Tarun Sharma – Assistant General Manager at EXIM Bank of India and Mr. Nilay Rathi – General Manager (Commercial) at Century Textiles and Industries Limited.  The moderator for the discussion was Mr. Prashant Shetty – Director IDFC Capital and an alumnus of the Institute (batch of 1988).
The event, organized by the SIMSREE Finance Forum, was inaugurated by the traditional lighting of the lamp and the national anthem following which the Director of the Institute, Dr. Sandhya Dhabe, welcomed the esteemed guests to the Institute.
The Chief Guest for the event, Mr. Seshagiri Rao, then addressed the batch. He touched upon the challenges that the developed nations, namely USA and Europe, faced of late and what led to the various financial crises in these economies. In the backdrop of the current turbulent scenario, he also spoke about the opportunities that lie in emerging economies and outlined the path that could be followed. With a rich experience spanning three decades in the steel industry and in the corporate finance and banking sector, he also shared with the students the challenges that India faces with regards to Steel manufacturing and how the future is full of fruitful opportunities waiting to be tapped in to.
Mr. Atul Joshi, the Key Note speaker, brought to the event an insight to the economies of India and China from a Rating Company’s perspective. He first explained the students the ratings models followed for banks, corporate and the local governments. He also cited the disparities in the national and international ratings awarded to the institutions in India and its effect. Finally, he requested the students to have an optimistic attitude towards the future of the nation.
The stage was then opened for the panel discussion moderated by Mr. Prashant Shetty. All the panelists first spoke briefly on the subject. Mr Nilay Rathi shared with the students the challenges and opportunities that the Indian and Chinese economies face sighting the example of the textile industry. Mr. Tarun Sharma enlightened the students regarding the importance of exports for the development of any economy. Mr. Pramod Kasat elaborated upon the importance of investment, the differences between the Indian and the Chinese growth models, and the growth strategies to be followed. Among the wide array of questions raised by the audience were the ever increasing population challenges faced by the two nations, and whether it is a challenge or an opportunity, the political unrest between India and China, and how it may impact the economic ties between the two nations, the importance of trade fairs and the merits and challenges of the democracy in India and autocracy in China.
Mr. Seshagiri Rao concluded the discussion perfectly by saying “India and China need not confront and have conflict, but they need to collaborate and cooperate”. The event was concluded with a vote of thanks by the SIMSREE Finance Forum Coordinators.      

- Sufiyan Sarguroh,
  SIMSREE Finance Forum    

Saturday, September 28, 2013

1 Mistake Crippling Even the Most Talented Bloggers

I find talented bloggers who suffer from a mistake. A block. I am not immune from it.

Simple mistake to spot but it can be tough to correct.

"I am not making money with my blog so I must be a failure."

This one mistake led me to do stuff which lowered the value of my blogs. Posting too frequently. Moving away from networking. All that stuff.

Remember 1 thing; to make money blogging your blog must be cool.

Once you are cool, and people trust you, then the money flows in.

But reaching that cool factor requires you to create awesome content and make powerful connections with other bloggers, and you might not be getting paid much at all during that period of time.

You are not a failure. Failing is an event. You are unlimited.

Create awesome value.

Make powerful connections.

The money will keep. The Universe keeps a silent tab.

Carry On!

Please Follow Me on Twitter Here

- Image http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Can You Overcome the Suffering of Letting Go?

I admit it.

I cannot run 2 successful blogs.

I can run 1 uber successful blog and a 2nd blog. But where your attention and energy goes, grows. So, dividing my most potent creative energies between 2 blogs by trying to post on a daily basis is not going to happen.

What does this mean for you? A little has changed. Please take these steps.

#1 - Follow Me on Twitter. Follow my other blog there for daily, value-packed, 2500 word, resource-style posts.

#2 - Look out for at least 1 update weekly here.

#3 - Pay attention to the theme here; it might just grow your online business quickly.

What is the theme? Suffering. Specifically, the suffering you experience by letting go. I did things like post 30 times daily here, push these posts like mad, networking like an animal, etc....and after 1 month of going bezerk I had to face facts.

I had to let go this blog. At least on the daily posting side of things. Because it was not working. I suffered through making this decision. Again, I run a successful blog. I would link up here but due to Triberr requirements, please click on my twitter account above, and link up through that spot.

But anyway, you might suffer terribly when letting go. Ego thing. I overcame the suffering of letting go. Now my other blog receives 7500 page views daily. L let go, I grow. Fun, right?

Anyway, apply this idea to your online business. Where are you suffering? Where can you let go? Where can you better devote your creative energies.

See you on twitter. Then at my other blog ;)

Of course, after that I will see you here next week!

Ryan Biddulph

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Fed holds off tapering, cuts growth outlook

U.S. Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke said the central bank decided to hold off on slowing the US$85-billion a month in bond purchases to see more conclusive evidence that the recovery will be sustained, a move that surprised financial markets that were braced for a reduction in the stimulus program.

            
            The US Federal Reserve has decided in its latest monetary policy to maintain its economic stimulus program (the Quantitative Easing) despite speculation that it would start the tapering process. It had been widely speculated that the central bank would cut back the stimulus package, currently $85bn a month. The Reserve also reduced its growth forecasts for the US economy, cutting the 2013 outlook by 0.3 percentage points to a range of 2.0-2.3 per cent, and lowering the prediction for next year to 2.9-3.1 per cent.
            To give a backdrop to the entire situation, the US embarked on an easy money policy post the 2008 financial crisis. This was called the Quantitative Easing program wherein the Federal Reserve would buy bonds and other assets in order to push more money into the economy, thereby stimulating growth and reducing unemployment.  The most recent strategy, called QE3, had the Fed buying $85 billion of bonds every month.
            With the US economy stabling, and the unemployment estimates reducing to 6% for the year 2015, the US Fed Reserve Chief Ben Bernanke had previously indicated in June that the tapering of the QE program may begin by the end of this year. This had sparked a panicky flow of money out of the emerging markets and back to the US which had adversely affected the emerging economies, including India.
            In his statement today Bernanke said, ‘‘Conditions in the job market today are still far from what all of us would like to see. The committee has concern that rapid tightening of financial conditions in recent months would have the effect of slowing growth.’’ Another important point is that Mr. Bernanke said a decision on tapering asset purchases depends on economic data, and there is no set timetable. Previously he had indicated that the tapering will begin by the end of this year.
            Now that the QE tapering has been held off, the markets on the whole will be looking towards a revival of sorts. The US Dow Jones rose 1.11% to 15,701.82 and the NASDAQ by1.1% to 3,786.906. The BSE Sensex has already gained 500 points and is at 20,464 points (as of 11:20 AM IST). The Rupee has has come down to 61.95 to the Dollar, down by 1.44 (as of 11:20 AM IST).
All eyes are on the RBI monetary policy expected tomorrow (20th September) where it is expected that Mr. Raghuram Rajan will signal a reversal to a few of the tightening measures the RBI had taken previously.

- Sufiyan Sarguroh
  SIMSREE Finance Forum

Recent Bills Part-2

Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) Bill

Background:  Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) Bill was established by the Government of India on 23rd August 2003 to promote old age income security by establishing, developing and regulating pension funds. Pension bill was introduced into the parliament in 2005 for the first time. After nearly a decade, both houses of parliament i.e. Loksabha (4th September) and Rajyasabha (6th September) have finally passed the pension bill which aims to create a regulator for pension sector and extend the coverage of pension benefit to more people.

Why it’s important: At present only 12% of total active workforce are having formal pension and social security plans, while remaining 88% of workforce is having no old age security. This bill will help increase number of people investing in pension plans. It will also open door for 26% of FDI in pension funds.

Key Features:
1.    With the passage of the bill, more citizens of the country will be able to get pension cover. National Pension Scheme (NPS) has a corpus of around Rs. 35,000 crore with around 53 lakh subscribers, including those of 26 state governments.
2.    Subscriber will be able to open an account which will be portable across job changes. Subscriber will also decide the fund manager and schemes in which he is interested to invest his pension wealth. They can also switch schemes and fund managers.
3.    Government of India has also launched Swavalamban plan for people working in unorganized sector.  This scheme will encourage such people to save for their retirement.
4.    This bill will give PFRDA statutory powers. With statutory powers authority can pull up errant pension sector participants and ensure better subscriber protection.

What will be affected?

The bill provides subscribers a wide range of choices to invest their funds, for assured returns by opting for Government Bonds as well as in other funds depending on their capacity to take risk. The new law could help bring in new pension products in the market, thereby giving a choice to customers. Competition could also improve quality of service and returns. If these measures are successful, these could help mobilize substantial long-term funds, which can be used to build infrastructure. 

By, Abhijit Vasagade
SIMSREE Finance Forum

Sunday, September 15, 2013

11 Tips for Killing Your Worst Online Business Limiting Beliefs

"Ryan, will you abandon me like other mentors? I am sick of joining programs only to be abandoned. I am sick of these lying, cheating mentors. I am sick of struggling."

Wow. I have seen this message again, and again, and again, as an online business mentor. I promise that I was the exact same person a few years ago. I was annoyed by my mentor. I was tired of being abandoned. I had little money. I was a screw up. I blamed everybody.....except myself.

Fast forward a few years. I am living the spectacular internet lifestyle. Chilling in Kathmandu Nepal now. What a site this morning! Stunning sunrise here. I feel blessed. OK here is the sunrise ;)


You can have it all. Live the internet lifestyle, kill your pains, leave your failures behind for good. But you need to do 1 thing and do it well to succeed wildly. The process is freeing but uncomfortable. The process is annoying, but oh so beneficial.

You must address your limiting beliefs.

You must admit your limiting beliefs.


I receive emails explaining how mentors continue to ignore these struggling folks, and how this niche is dead, and how this person blames so and so or the economy or the president for their failures. If you want to make money blogging all this stuff has to go. If you want to succeed with your online business all these excuses, all these limiting beliefs, all these success-killing, poisonous, terrible states of mind must be faced, embraced and released. Because as long as you hold a limiting belief you cannot come close to reaching your full potential.

My Story


I believed nobody would read this blog. I mean, I joined Triberr, and saw a nice jump in page views, but I believed, on a deeper level, that nobody cared, and that I would never generate substantial ad revenue through it, and that nobody would comment, and etc, etc.....so naturally this became a reality for me.

One day I got honest; I stated the limiting belief to myself. This felt miserable, then good, for when I moved into acts to connect with other bloggers I noted an uptick in comments. People were reading. Excellent! I addressed my limiting belief instead of sweeping it under the rug and wow, cool things began to happen after this moment.

Ready for the steps?

Let's go!

1: Own it All


If you cannot get your online business mentor on the phone YOU attracted such a mentor. You could have patiently done research on a mentor and picked a winner. You could have followed their system, proved your worth, and naturally, you would have drawn your interest. So, if they do not pick up the phone, own it. Take responsibility for all of your online business failures to become wildly successful.

This one feels sucky then oh so freeing. I made pennies through google adsense a few months back. No, I did not make money blogging at all, really, so I owned my limiting belief: "Ryan, you have never made much money blogging so this will be your reality, like, forever", then added income streams to my google adsense. More income streams means more prospering for me. I owned it all. I took responsibility for it all because I am the cause and solution, for at all.

2: Know Why


I formerly deemed it IMPOSSIBLE to write one 2000 word blog post daily. Then I fell more in love with being free versus honoring my limiting beliefs. I believed it impossible but wanted to be free, and to become successful, and wanted to live the internet lifestyle, more than I wanted to agree with my limiting belief.

So I fell in love with my reason WHY I wanted to succeed online and wrote the damn post each day.

Life is about uncovering your limiting beliefs and replacing them with empowering beliefs.

Knowing why you want to succeed helps you kill your limiting beliefs so you can succeed wildly with your online business, or your internet marketing venture, or your ghostwriting venture.

3: Visualize


You are picturing something now. These words. Me, as you read. Or you glance to the side and see my traveling the world. Or you compare yourself to me and build an *impossible no I cannot do that stuff* in your mind when you read my posts. Well here is the deal; your life follows your mental pictures.

If you visualize yourself traveling the world for 20 minutes daily I guarantee this will happen; every reason why you CANNOT travel the world comes up in mind. Money, no powerful friends, no luck, all those BS, cancerous, limiting beliefs arise, but if you can write them out after visualizing, and stare them straight in the eyes, and visualize each day, seeing yourself living your dreams, and becoming emotionally involved with your vision, then you will succeed. Then the limiting beliefs go away and you attract the ideas, people and circumstances to make your dreams come true.

Then you act inspired and wind up living in Bali, or Phuket, like me. Then you succeed like a boss. Like this guy, who is avoiding dust in Kathmandu ;)


Visualize. Slay your limiting beliefs.

4: Build a Network of Inspiring Friends


I am astounded by what my friends have overcome to succeed. So I naturally push myself to succeed despite my limiting beliefs, because I know that if they did it, I can do it too. If somebody can make money blogging at an insane clip I can do it too.

I read an article from Steve Pavlina a few days ago. He is not a close friend but I did gain inspiration from his work, as he noted that he pulled in over $1000 a day through his blog, and this was many years ago.

I have many good buddies who have overcome seemingly impossible obstacles to succeed wildly online. They inspire me to release my limiting beliefs so I can do the same.

Surround yourself with winners.

5: Trust


I admit, right now I am tired. Worn out. My fingers hurt. My eyes are straining. So I am taking a break. I trust. I believe that some Higher Power will arrange things on my behalf and that I do not have to kill myself to make things work in my life. I do not trust all the time but I am improving.

Trusting helps you to let go the limiting belief that you need to be in full control to succeed. Sorry. You are not in control. The Universe, or God, is in control. You act inspired, and have fun, and align yourself, and trust, and yep, your wildest dreams will come true but you must detach and trust for these neat things to happen.

OK, on to my break ;)

6: Get Comfortable with Being Uncomfortable


My biggest online business breakthroughs happened after uncomfortable moments. OK, usually hellish moments ;) But the point is to embrace your limiting beliefs. This feels terribly uncomfortable at times.

Sometimes my old money limiting beliefs pop up. This drives me batty. I fear losing money or not having enough money for a few moments. Uncomfortable stuff. But I hug the feelings instead of resisting them and what do you know? I instantly feel better after those few moments of misery. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable to rock it out and slay your limiting beliefs.

7: 1 Hour or More on Personal Development Daily


Or at least 30 minutes. I note visualizing above but you should also meditate, affirm and read self help books, all together for at least 1 hour daily. Limiting beliefs like to bury themselves in your mind. Root them out. Big time. By working on your mental tools.

When you see yourself in the light of truth - after persistently meditating, visualizing and affirming - you can more easily nail down your limiting beliefs.

Personal development training made it all possible.

8: Know the True Definition of Sacrifice


Many online business entrepreneurs never embrace their limiting beliefs because they are so caught up holding onto the old, and worn out. Example; you might feel it more important to watch an hour of TV each night to unwind from work instead of writing a blog post.

Coming up with blog post ideas is stressful, you believe. Too much of a sacrifice (insert negative connotation of sacrifice here), so you watch the TV, churn out maybe 1 blog post a week, after 6 months of spending a few hours each week on blogging you label the whole work at home thing a scam, since you made $50 during the span.

It is ALL your fault because you held onto the old, and worn on, instead of releasing your bullcrap TV habit to make room for the new, and exciting, your prospering, money making blog, which would help you quit your stressful job and travel the world.

Of course you must accept the truth of what sacrificing really is before you can embrace this limiting belief.

9: Remove Negative People from Your Life Immediately


Energy Vampires are good at reinforcing your online business limiting beliefs. This crowd will put you in a box quickly, based on their own, flawed, clouded perception, and if you agree with them you are just as foolish as they are. Let go of them now. Negative, small-minded people live miserable lives because they hold onto their limiting beliefs like a security blanket.

They will readily force you to hold onto your limiters, telling you that running an online business or working at home is way too risky. So, let them go, to make room for successful people. Set up a vacuum for successful people to populate.

10: Snap Back


Place a rubber band around your wrist. The moment you hear a limiting belief in your mind snap the band. Alarm yourself of the low energy instantly so you can let it go, proceed, and prosper.

11: Go the Extra Mile


I felt like writing a 600 word post. Here we are. I proved to myself that I could write beyond my perceived limits. Developing this habit helps me to push myself to my limits on a daily basis.

Push yourself. Your limiters reveal themselves after you push yourself from the possible to the impossible. That little extra bit of pushing creates astounding success for you because you can see exactly where you are screwing up.....and of course, simply decide to go beyond that point.

Set a high precedent. Go a little bit higher to prove to yourself that you can do it!

Your Turn


How do you release your online business limiting beliefs?

Please Share this Post on all Your Social Networks!

- Image http://www.flickr.com/photos/v1ctor/

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Recent Bills- Part 1

Companies Bill 2012

The Companies Bill was laid before the Parliament in the month of December 2011 and was referred to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance, headed by Mr. Yeshwant Sinha. The standing Committee submitted its report in June, 2012. Based on Standing Committee recommendations, the Companies Bill was amended and was introduced as Companies Bill 2012. The Bill was passed in Lok Sabha on 18 December 2012 and by Rajya Sabha on 8 August 2013.
The Bill has 470 clauses are against 658 Sections in the existing Companies Act, 1956. The entire bill has been divided into 29 chapters.

Key Features:
  • Companies are required to spend at least two per cent of their net profit on Corporate Social Responsibility
  • The limit in respect of maximum number of companies in which a person may be appointed as auditor has been proposed as 20, from which public companies should not be more than 10
  •  Financial Year of any company can end only on March 31 and only exception is for companies, which are holding/subsidiary of a foreign entity requiring consolidation outside India, can have a different financial year with the approval of Tribunal
  • Maximum number of members in a private company increased from 50 to 200
  • For infrastructural projects, preference shares can be issued for a period exceeding 20 years
  • Shares cannot be issued at a discount except sweat equity shares
  • Time gap between 2 buy-backs shall be minimum 1 year
  • One of the directors of a company shall be a person who has stayed in India for 182 days or more
  • A Chairperson can be an MD or CEO at the same time, if the Articles of the company permits or if the company does not have multiple businesses or where the company has multiple businesses and has appointed 1 or more CEO for each such business
  • CFO and WTD(Whole Time Director) included in Key Managerial Personnel
  • Appointment of at least one woman director on the board of prescribed classes of companies has been made mandatory


Source: Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Government of India. http://www.mca.gov.in/Ministry/pdf/The_Companies_Bill_2012.pdf






The National Food Security Bill 2013


In its 2009 national election manifesto, the Congress had promised to enact a Right to Food law with the aim of guaranteeing access to sufficient food for all people. On March 19 2013India’s Cabinet approves an amended draft of the food security before introducing it in Parliament for a general debate. On May 2, 2013India’s government introduces an amended food security bill in Lok Sabha. On August 26 2013 the bill was passed in the Lok Sabha with a simple majority. The Bill was passed by Rajya Sabha on 2 September 2013, bringing it one step closure to being an Act.


Key Features:
  • 75% of rural and 50%  of the urban population entitled to five kg food grains per month at Rs.3, Rs.2, Re.1 per kg for rice, wheat and coarse grains, respectively
  • The bill giveslegal entitlement to 67 per cent population (including 75 per cent rural and 50 per cent urban) for subsidized grains under the Targeted Public Distribution System
  • The work of identification of eligible households has been left to the states
  • Pregnant women and lactating mothers entitled to nutritious meals and maternity benefit of at least Rs.6000 for six months
  • The central government will provide funds to states in case of short supply of food grain
  • The current food grain allocation of the states will be protected by the central government
  • The state governments will provide food security allowance to the beneficiaries in case of non-supply of food grain
  • The eldest woman in the household, 18 years or above will be the head of the household for the issue of the ration
  • There will be state and district level redress mechanisms
  • The programme , when implemented, will be the biggest in the world with the government spending estimated at Rs 125,000 crore annually on supply of about 62 million tonns of rice, wheat and coarse cereals to 67 per cent of the population


Source: The hindu.

http://www.thehindu.com/multimedia/archive/01404/National_Food_Secu_1404268a.pdf


By, Varad Shastri
SIMSREE Finance Forum

How a Fired Ex-Security Guard Conquered Mental Illness to Live His Dreams

I did not want to write this post. Everybody sees me as cheery Ryan. Factor in a painfully-slow internet connection here in Kathmandu, and pretty high levels of agitation with being behind my work, and some intestinal issues, and some other stuff too, and well, I just did not feel like writing this post. But here we are. Why?

Because people need to hear your story. No, not my story. I write my story to inspire you to write your story. Sure I do some awesome stuff; I tame tigers, I feed monkeys on the front porch, I change time zones like nobody’s business and I do other neat stuff, but I am writing this for all of the scared, depressed, worried, suicidal people out there. I am writing this for bi-polar people, for people who suffer from mental illness, because although I have never been diagnosed, I have suffered from depression, suicidal thoughts/tendencies, bi-polar behavior, etc, etc, etc.

Hey, I am not writing this to put myself – or yourself – in a box. I want you to know that if you have ever been depressed, or suicidal, I have been there. I want you to know that if you have ever struggled horrifically with poverty, with being so broke that you have 4 cents in your pocket, I have been there. I have been through nightmares, like you, I am sure, and I have proven that, despite all these nightmares, you can live your dreams.

I mean, look at me, doing intense laundry lifts by Lampizat Road. Adding some mass to my quads again ;)



Again, I am in Kathmandu now. I have 3 months in India after our month in Nepal. Charmed life, indeed, but of course I had to work mentally and physically to get here. I live my dreams, traveling the world for 36 months and counting, by dealing with my feelings. I had to face, embrace and deal with my demons. I had to fight through low lows, where I thought about ending my life, or just never getting out of bed again. I had to experience these moments to become the mostly happy, jovial, heart-felt guy that I am today.

2 stories come to mind, 2 stories forced me to write this post. I had no choice. I learned of blogging legend Jon Morrow’s story yesterday. I always saw the name but never knew the story; Jon suffers from a crippling disease, and yet he still puts out the best copy I have ever seen. And that is a ton of copy. He succeeded despite going through hell.

I also thought of Randy Gage. Such an inspiring, uplifting guy, and I learned a few months ago that he is HIV positive. The energy he emits is stunning, really, and to realize that he is high vibing it despite his current situation has inspired me to write this post.

Kid Years


OK, on to me. As a kid I was hyper sensitive and shy. I lived a pretty good life but socially I had issues. Not a big deal, I suppose. I did not date until I was 26. After breaking up with my first girlfriend I had my first visit with depression and suicidal thoughts. I went dark for 3 months. The rejection was overpowering to me, and it was the first true loss that I experienced.

Since both sides of my family have a history of alcoholism, mental illness, and unfortunately, one suicide, my parents took great care to help me deal with my mental issues. I did dumb stuff like stacking, or combining thyroid boosters with fat burners with caffeine and I worked out to ridiculous limits, pushing myself to dangerous points in the gym. No, it was not healthy. I did it to look good, to boost my self esteem, and also to punish myself, because I viewed myself as shit. No self worth.

After kicking around for a bit – and a trip to the emergency room for the stupid stacking stunt I pulled above – I began to come out of my haze for a bit. I was not healed, by any means, but I could start to see that by suffering, and by owning your suffering, you can be free of the suffering. You can begin to grow. Inspiring. A little bit at least. This was also the point in my life where I began to embrace personal development.

I kicked around working a few dead end, low paying jobs. After meeting a nice girl from NY and dating for a bit I came into the possession of a few powerful CDs. Personal development stuff, called Bob Proctor’s “Power to Have it all” series. I liked them. Bob mentioned “Think and Grow Rich” as being pivotal in his life. I bought it. I was hooked. The wheels began to turn, but just a bit.

Pier Guard Days


Fast forward 3 years. I was making a few dollars working as a security guard in a shipping terminal. I had my college degree – most people wondered what the hell I was doing there – but desired a nice, comfy job, where I had little hassles. I hated authority, I feared criticism, and I enjoyed living in a comfort zone.

I still had episodes of depression, although no suicidal urges in years; I was way too comfortable for that to happen. I dated casually – no hurt or rejection, and professionally, I worked an easy, low-paying job, where I could pay bills, put away a few bucks, and still spend time watching sports games.

All of this changed when I got the pink slip. Maher Terminals let me go. Computers took over my job. Thanks Microsoft. I was cool with that. The beginning of my online business career. I was ready to grow, and go. My girlfriend Kelli and I chilled for a few months, relaxing. I enjoyed my first vacation in 5 years. Exciting time. I lived off of dwindling savings without a worry in the world.

Eventually things got really tight financially so I had to work. I decide to do the online business thing. This was the beginning of a difficult time in my life. I spent time working on my mindset, and on my business, but things did not come together. The money disappeared. Depression again. Suicidal thoughts again. I care not to delve into details, but needless to say, these deep, dark times, well, they made the person who you see today. They made me. They pushed me to embrace my demons.

Bad Times


I remember one day walking to the Scotch Plains-Fanwood library. I sold my car for $2600 because I needed money. I went through that money. I was blessed to have a roof over my head but that was changing soon too. Anyway, I looked in my wallet; 4 cents. I cried. I had 4 cents. I was over $50,000 in debt. I went home. I cried. I fell into a pit. Deeper and deeper. It was one of the lowest points in my life. I worked like hell to grow my online business but saw little growth.

Now, when I look back on those days, I realize why people who do stuff like traveling the world for 36 months, or people who start massive business ventures, or people who change the world by becoming the best in their respective fields, I understand why these people do what they do. Most If not all of these folks went through unimaginable nightmares to get where they were. God breaks down the most the guys and gals who shine brightest for others. At least in most cases.

Listen, I understand that people starve to death. I understand people have experienced hardship, unimaginable hardship, and I never want to minimize their experiences, but I also want to never minimize my experience, because in being honest in explaining how I have felt over my life, I can help one person who has been severely depressed, or who has been suicidal.

More Tough Times


I worked, and worked, and still no money. After I picked Kelli up at the airport – her car, she offered to take me on trip but I refused – she said I looked like a “terminal cancer patient.” I shaved my head because I could not afford a haircut, and I lost 35 pounds because I walked 4 miles to the library each day, and did not each much, each day. Maybe one meal.

I was living in a nightmare. But I persisted. I sometimes spent 6 hours or more working on my mindset daily. I meditated. I would spend hours in silence. I pushed myself. I wrote down inspirational quotes. Many people do not realize most of my most inspiring quotes were written during the nightmarish days.

But I persisted with my online business tasks. I had my moments; each time I had a violent argument with Kelli over money, most of these times I made terrible threats. Threats against myself, of course. Me against the world again. More depression. More rage, more anger, more self-abuse.

The cycle continued for years. I would make a few bucks, see a little success, the happiness dries up, I get depressed. Almost like clockwork. One day, I noticed a marked shift; I decided to do something which enraged me. I opened a stream of income I had resisted opening for years.

Flip Out


I flipped out before this moment. I threatened to hurt myself. I became enraged with Kelli. I protested. But I could feel a little something. My heart opened a little as my ego melted a little. I had bouts of depression after that, and I got upset, and angry, but I began to soften just a little bit.

Money began to flow into my life with increasing ease. I began taking more chances, and prospering more frequently. Then, I made a bold move! Kelli and I scheduled a trip to Bali, Indonesia. Things started falling into place.

I was not past my depression yet, nor my low energy, angry, sometimes suicidal states of mind, but I did at least embrace my human-ness. I did at least embrace my mental illness.

Acceptance


Here is the secret; there is no secret. There is no magic key. There is not pill, or one act, or one moment that will change your life, that will solve your mental illness. There is only this: ACCEPTANCE OF WHAT IS TO HELP YOU SEE WHAT MIGHT BE.

Stuff like meditating persistently helped me become aware of my demons. I could see where I wanted to hurt myself. I could face, embrace, and release those feelings, despite how hellish these moments were.

Stuff like surrounding myself with positive people helped me frame a different perspective on life.

Look at the results. Me hanging at Monkey Temple in Kathmandu, Nepal, yesterday :)


Stuff like pushing myself, and doing stuff that I feared doing, helped the angry, frightful, depressed, worried, sometimes wanting to harm myself feelings, to arise, and as these feelings arose, I learned to embrace them, and release them.
The real secret to conquering depression is acceptance. The second secret is to see what might be, it is to see where you can improve your life.

You see, I could have sat home in New Jersey, gotten hooked on Zoloft, landed a job so I could pay my bills, and accept the fact that I will always have deep, dark bouts of depression, and I might always be suicidal. I could have. That would have been acceptance of WHAT IS. But I learned, from many successful people who conquered their demons, and dealt with depression, and suicidal thoughts, and who dealt with the death of loved ones, and financial heartache, I learned that once you accept what is you can develop a vision of what MIGHT BE.

Might Be


The “might be” part for me was travel. The “might be” part was running online businesses. It was being rich. It was, more than anything else, being happy most of the time, and minimizing my deep, dark moments….it was realizing that I could be happy, that I need not spend my life angry, and scared, and critical of other people, and worried about what people might think.

When I began writing inspirational quotes – my own – many years ago, at one time or another, every one of my family members though that I was depressed, or crazy. It was such a change, they were not ready to handle it. Even Kelli wondered what I was up to here and there, and she has been the most supportive, loving, caring person in my life, along with my parents. I was stunned, really, because here I was, inspiring people, even though I was dead broke, and pretty depressed, and those closest to me thought that the positive quotes and new persona meant I was sick, or that something was wrong.

I suspect this was association by patterns; our family had seen some tragedy in a similar situation. I respected this and although I was upset. I moved on.

I traveled, and saw the world, and embraced new cultures. I saw how much of the world lives in poverty yet is happy, and how many people in the West have money yet are miserable. The Walking Dead. Nope, I learned to grow my online businesses from an inside-out perspective.

Watch Triggers


I saw my triggers; anything related to financial struggle, or rooted in heavy criticism, pushed me to go into a rage, often ending in depression, or sometimes, in wanting to jump off of the roof. Or the 5th floor. I saw these moments, for the first time, and I began to make correlations. I felt a bit more free.

So, when was the conquering point? Where can I honestly say, I began to get past my darkest demons? Where did the deeply depressed, suicidal thoughts, begin to disappear?

THE MOMENT WHERE I SAT QUIETLY AND TOOK IT!

Example; yesterday I became heavily agitated at something. Some moment. The feelings arose. I had 2 choices; I could react, and speak, and vent, or I could sit and take it. I chose to take it. I went quiet for hours. I did not mope; I observed. I went to sleep. I laid in bed. I watched it all without responding, or reacting.

I did not run to the bar. I did not take a pill. I did not exercise. I did not scream at Kelli. I did not attempt to harm myself. I did not attempt to go into a depression, to shut out the world, to fight, to strain, to put on a happy face.

I sat, and took it. I embraced the feelings. I felt them. I watched scenarios go through my mind. I watched fights, and retorts, and rebuttals. I watched me fighting people online and offline. I watched myself fighting each person who allegedly wronged me.

I fought, and fought, in my mind, but that was the only spot, where I fought. My body was limp….well, full of tension, at times, but overall, pretty limp, because I decided to sit and take it, instead of manifesting the energies, and doing sometime to dissipate them.

In the past, when I had deeply suicidal, or depressive, moments, I used the same strategy. Go to bed, deal with the feelings, watch them, embrace them….for 30 minutes, or 12 hours. Does not matter. Embrace. Embrace. Release. Release.

I am not a medical professional. If you feel suicidal I suggest calling a hotline. I can only share my story, what cleansed me, and that was embracing these energies.

Use Power Ask for Help


There is only POWER in reaching out and asking for help when you need it. There is nothing wrong with using medication to control depression if you augment treatment with meditation, or some spiritual, or mental, treatment. This way, when the doctor goes away, or the pills go away, you have a back up plan, until the pills come back, or the doctor comes back….and one day, you might be able to wean yourself off of the pills, or the doctor. Maybe.

We are complex beings. Facing my fears, worries, rages, anxieties, without acting on them, and releasing them, was a turning point in my life. But I have other tips to share, which have helped me moved from mentally ill, to happy, and prospering, and yes, a dream living fool ;)


Practical Tips for Overcoming Your Mental Demons

1: Admit you are dealing with mental demons…..embrace your mental issues. If you feel down, or depressed, for 5 hours today, or for 2 days, or for 2 weeks, say to yourself, “I feel like shit, I feel depressed. I need to take steps to address my feelings.”

2: Consider seeking medical help; seeing a medical professional can be the first step to help you see that you have an illness, like a physical illness, that needs to be addressed. I did not admit that I was depressed until I saw a doctor. At that moment, I embraced it, fully, and moved forward.

3: If you are even borderline suicidal call a 24 hour hotline or check in with a friend. Frankly, avoid doing what I did. I took my rage out on people around me and I haunted them, my rage did, and although I felt a bit better, these selfish moments hurt people I loved, terribly. Call specialists. Get help. Get past your feelings. Get better.

4: Find purpose. Make your life about something bigger than you, or your mental illness. Make it a goal of yours to travel the world, or to live the internet lifestyle, or to inspire people. These goals push you past your demons.

5: Take care of your body and mind.

How I Conquered Mental Illness and Lived My Dreams

Embracing my faults and seeing something bigger happening. Accepting my mental illness and building a vision. Admit it; you are depressed, or upset, or ill. You go through dark periods. This is OK. Admit it. Allow it. Then, take practical steps to cure your issues. No shame in that.

While taking your practical steps to cure, keep the idea of WHAT MIGHT BE in your mind. Make it a dominant thought. Picture a spectacular new reality in your life. Adopt a purpose and hold to it. See something grand.

Other Tips:


  • push yourself into uncomfortable areas; writing this post is an example.....uncomfortable for me to do but I see the potential to help and inspire so many people
  • make new friends; not in all cases, as I am still friends with old buddies, but I have met new people and made new friends too, to widen my support network
  • release anybody who feeds into your dark energies. Let go negative, unhappy people, because your job is not that of a savior, it is to feel good and help people who want assistance
  • be at peace with your feelings. Practice meditation, expand your awareness, learn to watch your feelings. Meditate for 20 to 40 minutes or more daily. This practice alone can help you embrace depressing or rage-ful feelings, and release them with alarming ease after months or even years of meditating
That is it for today guys. I have some fun stuff to do in Kathmandu. I might do laundry lifts, or hang with the fruit bats, or I might just chill for a bit, or meet my blogging buddy Suresh - although I think that is tomorrow - but whatever I do, I will do, because I faced my demons.

Mental healing is an inside-out job. Mental healing absolutely, positively, can be attained using an inside and outside approach, but when you augment the medication, and advice from medical professionals, with meditation, personal development, and adopting an overpowering purpose, a grand vision, a spectacular dream, well, magic happens.

I am proof :)

Have you ever suffered from depression?

How did you overcome your demons?

What tips can you add to my post?


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Monday, September 9, 2013

How Can You Handle the Most Annoying Entrepreneurial Question?

Person: “So Ryan, why do you charge (insert number here) for your article writing services?”
Me: dead air…or no email response.

The most annoying question faced by ghostwriters, or people who offer services, is the pay question. Cheap bastards will try to lower your price. Bargain basement shoppers will question your price. Even prospering individuals might try to work you down. But the question, well this question can annoy the hell out of you if you allow it to do so.


The Old Me

I remember the old me, explaining, paragraph after paragraph, about why I charged what I charged. Explanation, explanation, facts, proofs, these people say I write well, etc, etc, etc. Then one day an idea hit me….here it is:

Before you walk into a doctor’s office do you call the doctor and ask he or she to lower their rates? Do you complain about pricing? Do you threaten to go to Doctor Issac Yankum, or Dr. Mengala, down the block, because they will see you for $15 an hour? Do you question the doctor’s credentials after soaking them up? Do you feel the need to try to work this doctor down? No. Of course not. Unless you are insane.

OK, so, since I spent 4 years developing my writing skills, devoting thousands of hours learning my craft, I earned the right to charge fair market value. So I charge it. If you do not question an MD do not question RB. I like the sound of that J

Before you walk into a lawyer’s office do you call the lawyer and ask he or she to lower their rates? Do you complain about pricing? Do you threaten to go to The Ambulance Chaser down the block, because they will help you for $15 an hour? Do you question the lawyer’s credentials after soaking them up? Do you feel the nee to work this lawyer down? No. Of couse not. Unless you are insane.

OK, since I spent 4 years developing my writing skills, devoting thousands of hours learning my craft, I earned the right to charge fair market value. I charge it. If you do not question a lawyer do not question RB. And if you are the person offering the services, does a doctor or lawyer explain their rates? No. Neither should you.

Never Ever Do This


Never lower your rates to accodomate a broke person. Never lower your rates to accommodate a cheap person. I remember a particularly unhappy guttersnipe who complained about my rates; I did not stand firm. I did not explain. I ignored. Guttersnipe vanishes, replaced by people who dig my online business services. 

Do not, and I repeat, do not charge less for your ghostwriting services. This would be like a doctor cowering under pressure from a broke person, which is assinine, and you, learning your skill for months and years, are just as much the ass if you let a cheap person work down your rates.

The Mistake


Because if you lower your work at home venture value guess who will come along? A cheaper person who tries to lower your price. They will complain about being able to get the same quality or even better quality work through Fiverr – I heard this once – so naturally, if you give in, the price will go down, and down, until you find yourself charging $5 per article instead of $25, or $35, or $45.

I am warning you, the question is annoying, but ignore it. Share your rates. Prices are non-negotiable unless they individual wishes to pay more for a thorough job. You do not ask a doctor for a 30 minute consultation at ½ rate; ie, asking to pay $75 for 30 minutes instead of $150. This is business. This is online business, boys and girls, and this is how big boys and girls do the online business thing.

How to Handle the Annoying Rate Question?


Answer: “Because I do.”

Or, dead air. I like dead air. If you want to zing ‘em a bit – although I see no need to humiliate anybody – use the doctor story or lawyer story above. Help the individual see the silliness in their ways so they stop asking dumb questions.

But Ryan You Are No Doctor????


I know. I put in MORE hours than a doctor going for their MD and working their residency because I devoted 4 years OF MY LIFE – with no daily breaks – learning my craft. Only other entrepreneurs or whackjobs who put in 90 hour weeks or more worked as much. I also paid the price by struggling like a fool so now I charge the prices I do, because I worked harder than most people on earth to develop my skills.

Rates


Now, I do not charge $50,000 an hour, because of the fair market value deal. I work harder and longer than most but I am not setting up mega mergers. I am no Carl Icahn, trying to lower the price of Herbalife, or raise it, or whatever he is up to these days. Fair market. But, never underselling my online business self.

Uncomfortable Feeling


If you are new to making money online or charging for your services embrace the uncomfortable – but freeing – feeling of charging for your online business solutions. Trust me, the feeling goes away after landing your first few clients. The feelings arise the first few times you are needlessly criticized but hold firm; you are good at what you do and deserved to be paid handsomely for what you bring to the table.

The Universe Is a Mirror


You get what you put out there. See yourself in a prospering light. Charge your worth – which is high, if you practiced developing your skills – and sure enough, if you aggressively promote your ghostwriting services you will land clients who pay your rates.  If you lowball yourself guess what The Universe gives you in return? Little.

The Reward


Doing whatever you want to do with your life. If you charge your worth you can make a great living. I prefer to travel the world. Image below is me in Kathmandu, Nepal, my current stop. 36 months and counting traveling the world and loving it!



Your Turn


How do you handle this question?

Have you thought of the doctor/lawyer analogy?

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