Happiness ….

imageOne of my students is preparing for college entrance exam – math part. (my volunteer project), I meet her Mondays and Tuesdays and she is going on vacation for a week and coming back next Wednesday and she wants to take the exam at the earliest. Sometimes I meet her besides those two days whenever she wants. She wants to work on her exam material even in vacation. So I told her yesterday if she wants I could meet her next Friday (as I have another project on Thursday evening) after she gets back, she said “sure I would be craving for you by that time” – Am I edible 😋

Where the magic happens ….

Obwherethemagichappensviously in your comfort zone 🙂

Why Getting Out Of Your Comfort Zone Is The Best Thing ?

It’s important to push the boundaries of your comfort zone, and when you do, it is completely a new world.

Simply, your comfort zone is a behavioral space where your activities and behaviors fit a routine and pattern that minimizes stress and risk. It provides a state of mental security. You benefit in obvious ways: regular happiness, low anxiety, and reduced stress.

In order to maximize performance, however, we need a state of relative anxiety—a space where our stress levels are slightly higher than normal. This space is called Optimal Anxiety and it’s just outside our comfort zone.

Push, Push, Push – Expand your comfort zone

As part of my volunteer activities with New York Cares organization, I had been part of SAT prep program as a tutor for 4 years. This is a committed project for almost 8 months runs from October to May of the following year. Meets once a week for 2 hours. During this period, students take the practice test 4 times which made them comfortable with the exam format and question models and more than anything improves their stamina to sit for 4 to 5 hours taking this exam 🙂

A small presentation from New York Cares SAT Prep

During my association with this organization since Feb 2008, I have volunteered almost 630+ projects and team-led 190+ projects, but I never have team-led this particular project. This leadership demands lots of time, planning, organization, patience, commitment, dynamic etc., So much time is demanded to make this project a success, and i possess most of those qualities but I never dare to enter into that domain.

I did tutor this project at various locations in Manhattan several years ago, 3 years continuously and suddenly took a break from it and started again last year at a location very close to my office and home (since this is a weekday evening session after work). So this year I was checking for that location at New York Cares website but I could not find it. Then I checked with the Project Manager at New York Cares about this location and she came up with a proposal saying that it had already enough tutors signed up but they are looking for a ‘Team Leader’ and it could not be a better time that I was inquiring about this project at this location and asked me whether I would accept it. I immediately jumped into it to grab the opportunity and said yes and then realized that it was a huge challenge. Then I started to come up with all kinds of excuses such as that I won’t be available for 3 weeks in Feb as I go to India during that time and etc.,. But she said it was ok as I could assign some duties to any of my tutors in my absence. I still was hesitating and wanted to decline the offer as I was little scared to accept this huge responsibility. I really wished my husband was with me so that I could openly talked to him about all my fears. I really wanted to talk to someone to get the assurance that I could handle it. But there is no one except Baba.There was so much struggle going inside me and my conscience was telling me not to QUIpushT  and accept the CHALLENGEI believe quitting as a failure and I am not ready to accept it.

Suddenly Baba has forced me to accept this challenge. He knows the best and I know He and my husband would be there to guide me in every step and make this a huge success and I really pray and hope I would write about my accomplishments after this project ends in May 2016. And I am starting something new on an auspicious day – Vijaya Dasami – what more can I ask for ? I pray to The Divine Mother to guide me in the right direction in my new venture

I have already prepared very well for tomorrow’s session – some icebreaker games where the students and tutors can mingle do get to know each other and I have bought some gifts for winners too.

So what are you going to do in 2015 or in the near future to make yourself uncomfortable? and when are you going to do it!?

Don’t forget to return to your comfort zone from tconfort zoneime to time

Spinach soup

imageSpinach is one of the wonderful green-leafy vegetables often recognized as one of the functional foods for its wholesome nutritional, antioxidants and anti-cancer composition. Its tender, crispy, dark-green leaves are one of the favorite ingredients of chefs all around the planet.

Fresh leaves are rich source of several vital anti-oxidant vitamins like vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, B complex, and several minerals.

It is also good source of omega-3 fatty acids.




Spinach Soup:image

Sauté sliced onion, and washed spinach in oil/ghee.
Add mixed italian herb seasoning, chilli flakes, no salt at this stage.
Add a little milk and cook until done.
Cool and puree.
Put back in the pan, dilute puree with more milk+water.
Add salt to taste.
Warm thru, no boiling.

recipe courtesy – Meena 😍

I have added tomato, mini soya chunks, and tofu, And instead of Italian herb seasoning, I have added garlic, cinnamon, cardamom and cloves powder to it. It almost tastes like palak paneer but milk adds a very liquidy and silky texture.🍲🍲🍲🍲

Bon appetit 😋😋😋😋

Pumpkin Soup

imagePumpkin is an extremely nutrient dense food, meaning it is chock-full of vitamins and minerals but low on calories.

Pumpkin is one of the best-known sources of beta-carotene, a powerful antioxidant known to give orange vegetables and fruits their vibrant color and which is converted to vitamin A in the body

Pumpkin soup:

Dice Pumpkin- 1 Cup fullimage
Finely slice 1 small onion, and 1 Tomato.
In a little extra virgin olive oil, saute onion, tomato and when well done, Add salt, dash of chilli powder/sambar powder, turmeric to taste.

Once onion, tomato masala is done , saute the pumpkin Until raw smell goes. Sprinkle a little water and pressure cook until Pumpkin is cooked.

Cool and puree finely. Add a little tamarind pulp and bring to the boil.


Recipe credits : Meena