steve jobs
Do you ever wonder why some people are more successful than others?

Maybe you are even frustrated seeing how some people are doing so much better than you?

And have you wondered what it would be like to discover the #1 secret to success in life? What differentiates you from Steve Jobs or Richard Branson?

Well, in the next few minutes reading this blog post may just change your perspective on life forever. No pressure!

I had a dear friend around for lunch last week – and as we often do when we meet, we got talking about life and what the next few years will bring us.

We all come to a crossroads in our life when we face having to make some major decisions – and depending on the path we take, our life may change one way or the other. Sometimes quite dramatically.

So often a life-changing event such as say a serious health challenge or the passing of a loved one causes us to reflect and review our life. And yet so often, we do nothing to change our life as day to day commitments and challenges take up our time, focus and energy.

My friend who came for lunch shared this powerful prayer from Marianne Williamson:

Dear God/Universe/Source (insert here whatever word you prefer),

“Please impress upon me the vision of whom I am meant to be – reveal to me the bigger life you would have me live and undo the forces that keep me bound so that I might serve you more” – Marianne Williamson.

Marianne Williamson is one of my favourite teachers and I have been privileged to be the “mike-runner” at a couple of her talks.

So that’s it – the number one secret to success in life! 

At the end of the day, it all comes back to being of greater service to others. As the late and great inspirational teacher Zig Ziglar said:-

You can get everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want” – Zig Ziglar

Now you know the reason behind why Steve Jobs and Richard Branson have been so successful in the business world – they served so many people through their businesses. The products and services they created fulfilled superbly their customer’s needs again and again

One of my friends is currently recuperating after a major operation and I just get the sense that her life is now going to follow a completely different pathway.  The questions she is pondering are:-

What’s next for me?

How can I be of greater service to the world?

This friend is one of the most inspirational and loving people I know and the world needs her to share her gifts much more widely.

So my point is this – what will it take for you to truly follow what you want to do? Why wait for your wake-up call from the Universe?

And the answer to this question becomes easier to arrive at if you ask yourself this key question:-

How can I serve the world more?

To help you further, I invite you to ponder on these 2 questions:-

 What will you say about your life 10 years from now?

 What will others say about your life 10 years from now?

I have chosen 10 years as the figure here, but I could have easily suggested 5 years or 20 years. The point is that what you do today and how you serve others will impact the rest of your life.

Regardless of what profession you are in, what country you live in, what age you are, time is slipping away. So wait no more to follow what you want to do and to serve the world!

Richard Branson

Now when I usually talk about service, some readers mistakenly believe that I am suggesting going to another part of the world and getting involved with a charitable institution such as Nirvana School in South India. However, you can serve others from exactly where you are today, and through whatever you currently do.

So let me be clear here – I am not advocating that we all pack up our bags and go and serve others.

It’s a misconception that you need to change your life dramatically to be of service to the others.

Besides, it’s not necessarily easy for everyone to pack up their jobs and go travelling. To put things into perspective, for a lot of people in the world, finding their next meal is their biggest challenge, never mind being of service to others or seeking the perfect job or even enlightenment.

Please also be clear that I am not talking about servitude! I am advocating coming from a place of wanting to serve through choice and from a position of personal power.

The emphasis of this post is all about how you can be more successful in your life by helping others much more – and it’s not about dramatically changing the world. Though that might happen too!

True service to others is simply about bringing all of you into what you do every day! (Tweet this)

And ultimately, success in life can only come through truly serving people and serving as many people as you can.

It’s about doing what you do, whole-heartedly and with the intention of consciously making a difference to others. And you can do this, no matter what your profession is and where you are in your life.

If you are a painter and decorator, always do your best job you can!

If you are in customer service, hard as it might be at times, do it with a smile and with the intention to be of service.

If you are a writer, bring your authentic and pure self to the keyboard and pump out your best and most inspirational work:-).

I have met some very jolly and happy people performing what others would have considered jobs of drudgery and far beneath themselves. And I have also met some people in high level jobs, who moan all day to anyone who wold listen about their woes.

Remember that every human interaction is one of give and take. And each interaction is an opportunity to be of service to others. (Tweet this)

“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” – Howard Thurman

In my time, I have met some people who seemed more dead than the dodo! But this is about you – just how alive are you? And what makes you come alive!?

I have learnt that some people will rise to any challenge, others will always complain. And some people will pull out all the stops to make something happen, others will do the minimum and give up.

Just make sure that you are the one who has come alive and is hungry for grabbing success in life through serving others.

I have often written in the past about serving others and here are three of my most popular posts in this area:-

gandhi 140 years young

1. Feel the Fear and Change the World Any Way!

2. 6 Key Lessons in Life from a 140 Year Old Man 

3. Let your Life be your Message

I invite you to read each of these articles properly – and then do not be surprised to see your approach and attitude to live shift dramatically.

To bring an attitude of service into your daily life, it’s actually quite simple but not necessarily easy. To help you get started, here are my suggestions:-

1. Always Give your 100%

No matter what job you have and where you are in your life, do it to the best of your ability – whatever you do, do it 100%. Or don’t do it!

Can you imagine the dire and serious consequences if a surgeon did shoddy work!? What life threatening damage could he or she do?

No matter what you do, YOUR work deserves to be done with the same level of care, diligence and attention.

2. Give People more Than They Expect

Most people only do the minimum they need to but YOU can always give people more than they expect.   Ask yourself how can I serve more in this interaction? And then do it.

Always go the extra mile and remember – there is no traffic jam on the extra mile!

3. Connect People

One of the best ways of serving the people in your life is by connecting them with others in your life where you sense there might be mutual synergies or where one person can help the other.

I have a superb painter / decorator friend called Ricardo whom I have recommended to a number of friends over the years and he has done a sterling job for them all.

So who can you connect and serve in your community?

4. Look out for People in Distress or in Need of Help.

Do you remember how you felt the last time you helped a stranger with directions?

I bet you experienced a deep feel good factor in your body and you felt really good for the rest of the day for having helped someone.

So from now onwards, actively look out for ways of serving others around you as you go through your daily life. It’s easy right?

5.  Get Involved in your Local Community

There are so many ways you can officially serve your community such as joining your local youth centre or social centre.

Just find something that you like doing and which uses your skills.


6. Enrol as a Volunteer

One of the key factors behind the success of the London Olympics 2012 was the energy and enthusiasm of the volunteers.

These selfless volunteers who gave up their time to ensure the well-being of the spectators created a superb atmosphere and contributed to what’s recognised as the best Olympic games of the modern era.

I recently volunteered at a festival in Hyde Park and it was an amazing experience. I had a ball! I made some new friends and also went 10 shades of brown darker in the hot sun!

So look for ways of how you too can volunteer your services in something much bigger than you. As always, you’ll get so much more back!

7. Remember to Smile Often

By applying this one idea alone could transform your world and that of the people around you!

Would you rather be served by someone smiling or someone miserable? By someone looking light and jolly, or someone who seems to be carrying the weight of the whole world?

Whatever job you do, bring a smile and light-heartedness to your activity – and watch the impact on those you serve.

Even if you see your job as drudgery or mundane, from now onwards remember to smile, and to smile often. Ad your job will somehow feel easier too.

People will soon start wondering what your secret of happiness is – and they’ll gravitate towards.

8. Pay It Forward with Random Acts of Kindness

This is one of my favourite ways of serving others – pay it forward.

If someone does you a kindness, you simply “pay it forward” by carrying out an act of kindness for someone else.

The key is to always forget what kindnesses you have done, and to never forget the kindnesses done for you.

Go one step further and choose one or more ideas from 31 Ways to Carry out Random Acts of Kindness

You could go the extra mile – and choose one random act of kindness for each of the next 31 days.

Let’s create a ripple of kindness and service all around us!

The Way Forward

In this blog post, it seems that I have come full circle. I started by talking about reflecting on what’s next in your life – and how to bring a greater attitude of service in your life.

And maybe it’s not even about what’s next for you – it’s about being fully present and committed to where you are now.

By making the most of what you have now and giving the best service you can, the future will sort itself out.

What the world needs today is more people committed to serve others NOW. So let’s start from where we are now and see where we go -and at the same time, see how that brings you more success in life.

NOW, please share below in the comments section YOUR intention for service – let’s put it out there:-)


Make It Happen Workshop this Saturday, 20th July 2013

I am pleased to announce that I am launching regular weekend workshops for the rest of the year. To start with, these will be intimate events for a small number of people in a beautiful venue in central London.

The first workshop is this Saturday, 20th July 2013 from 3pm to 6pm.

What will you get from this event?

  • Clarity about the single most important goal for you in 2013
  • Insights into what’s been holding you back and stopping you
  • An action plan to help you make it happen

Click here to find out more about my workshop and to secure your place


My Radio Interviews

In the last 3 weeks, I have been interviewed on 2 radio shows – please check them out as below:-

1. Radio Enso with Arvind Devalia

2. How you can Make It Happen with Arvind Devalia



My 12th Annual Friends & Friend’s Friends Picnic! 


drumming at picnic 2004 in Regents Park11 years ago, I had this vision of bringing together the various people in my life for a day of celebration of life.

The result was my first ever “Friends & Friend’s Friends Picnic” in 2002. Every year since then, I have held this picnic in Regents Park central London – and this year’s event is on this coming Sunday – 21st July.

Check out more information here and join me!

Please bring all your friends, family, neighbours, work colleagues etc.

This year, the event has even been featured in TimeOut London magazine and you can read the online version here:-

TimeOut magazine has described the picnic beautifully:-

 “Indian author Arvind Devalia is on a mission to ‘create a movement of people who want to make the world a better place whilst also improving their own lives’.

One of the ways he reaches out is through his annual FAFF picnic – which is in its twelfth year now – inviting people to bring their families and friends down for a day of pleasant picnicking (bring your own food), games, African drumming, dancing and guided meditation.

The picnic will take place whatever the weather. NB: Enter the park via Hanover Gate.”

I look forward to seeing you all there!

If you are not in London or you are unable to attend due to prior commitments, then do organise your own “Friends & Friend’s Friends Picnic”.

I wish you all an amazing weekend – and a wonderful picnic wherever you are in the world.

And always remember to go the extra mile when serving others – therein lies the secret to success in your life 🙂

9 Smart Ways to Focus in the Age of Distraction


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