Monthly Archives: December 2015

9 Jedi mind tricks you can use in your life to trick the Dark side

Awaken the Force within you #MondayMorningWakeUpCall

Jedi Knight quotes

May the Force be with you

  1. “Try not. Do—or do not. There is no try.”

Yoda to Luke in response to Luke’s half-hearted reaction to levitate his Star Fighter plane by using the Force.

After all, if you are gonna try, then give it your best shot, else do not. Why waste your time and energy otherwise?

2.   “Train yourself to let go of everything you fear to lose.”

Yoda to Anakin when Anakin comes to Yoda for advice about the premonitions he is having about losing Padme Amadila cos as Yoda also says, “Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering.”

3.  “[Luke:] I can’t believe it. [Yoda:] That is why you fail.”

Yoda to Luke when Luke couldn’t believe his eyes when he saw Yoda lift the massive fighter plane by using just the Force (while all the while Luke was struggling to lift a rock).

Believe you must!

4. “You will know (the good from the bad) when you are calm, at peace. Passive.”

Yoda’s response to Luke during his training when Luke asks how he will know the good side from the bad side. ‘Passive’ however methinks should not be misconstrued as ‘inert’ or ‘inactive’ but rather as ‘actively passive’ or ‘consciously passive’

5.  “Patience you must have my young padawan”

Yoda tells an impatient Luke at the start of his training when like all one minds one wants to leap frog to the glory without the hard work.

  1. “Truly wonderful, the mind of a child is.”

When Obi-Wan comes to Yoda to seek help to find what he thinks is an impossible puzzle to solve, Yoda puts forth the puzzle to a group of young children who he is training to become Jedi knights. One of the young ones comes up with an answer which was the most obvious but was uncharacteristically overlooked.

Yoda indirectly reminds Obi-Wan (and us) to not lose the beauty of simplistic and innocent thinking, to continually unlearn what we learn.

  1. “You will find that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.”

Obi-Wan tells Luke when Luke finds it hard to believe that Darth Vader was earlier Anakin Skywalker and now they are not the same person, despite occupying the same body.

Moral: Wear glares that don’t colour your judgement.

  1. “Keep your concentration here and now where it belongs.”

Qui-Gon dispersing pearls of Jedi to his apprentice when Obi-Wan expresses anxieties about the future. Obi-Wan goes on to retort that “Master Yoda says I should be mindful of the future” but Qui-Gon replies saying “But not at the expense of the moment.”

Plan the future, but stay in the present moment.

  1. “Your eyes can deceive you, don’t trust them”

Obi-Wan while training Luke in the Force, aboard the Millenium Falcon. Instead of the senses, Obi-Wan tells Luke later to “Trust your feelings, Luke.” A philosophy oft repeated throughout the saga in different forms by different Jedi Knights including Master Yoda instructing Obi-Wan to “Use your feelings, you must” and Shmi Skywalker asking young Anakin “What does your heart tell you?” when he is torn between staying with his mom or leaving to train as a Jedi.

These are some of my favourite Jedi mind tricks, tricks that could probably transgress from the make-believe world of the galaxy far far away and be used in the not so make-believe world of drama and deadlines.

But for the tricks to overpower the dark side, believe in the Force you must!

What are some of your Yoda favourite philosophies that you can use in life?

5 questions to ponder about while creating your product

“If you want to create a great product, just focus on one person. Make the one person have the most amazing experience ever” – Brian Chesky (Founder, Airbnb)

5 questions to ponder while creating your product

Food for thought

Getting clarity on the core essence of your product has stumped many a founder. It has caused heartburn and demise of many a startup when ignored. In a recent post I had shared an example of Y Combinator also relentlessly bootcamping its startup founders to find the essence of their product.

Sharing a powerful framework that I came across in another post that might help you do just that.

Product Definition

Do you know your product?

Warning: It’s not as simple as it seems.

Stop Musturbating!

“People are disturbed not by things, but by the view they take of them” – Epictetus #MondayMorningWakeUpCall

I must


  • I must perform well
  • I must be treated fairly by others
  • I must not find life’s conditions very hard

The list is never-ending. These self-imposed demands can broadly be categorised into the above 3 ‘musts’ as Dr. Albert Ellis, a psycho therapist who also coined the term musturbating postulates.

Almost all your stress, strain and pain in life, the universe and everything comes from holding irrational beliefs which invariably include should, oughts & musts.

Hint: Recognize them. Logically dispute them.

Bonus hint: The words you use shape the feelings you infuse. Try replacing ‘must’ with ‘would like to’ or for those who love hyperboling, replace it with ‘would love to’.

3 ‘not so secret’ pearls of wisdom from Y Combinator for getting battle ready

“Every battle is won or lost before it starts” – Sun Tzu #MondayMorningWakeUpCall

Startup Battle Plan

“Plans are useless, but planning is essential” – General Eisenhower

Y Combinator has been touted as the navy seals of ‘accelerators’ for startups in the valley (and most likely worldwide), enabling fledgling companies to gear up for the cruel battle ahead, helping them kickstart the growth into billion dollar unicorns. Their list of almost mythical unicorns includes Airbnb, Dropbox, Reddit to name a few.

Tim Ferriss in one of his recent podcasts on the Tim Ferriss Show (where he interviews world class performers) asks William MacAskill, founder of, his core learnings in his 3 months ‘accelaration’ period with Y Combinator.

His response:

  1. One sentence description of what you do (and how you do it), on which they were grilled through week on week to refine.
  2. A singular focus on only improving your product, everything else is noise – which actually translates into the 4 P’s of marketing in the internet age – Product, Product, Product, Product
  3. Pick your key metric and focus on growing that metric by 10% week on week (that’s 142% in a year!)

That’s your task cut out for you right here. Chances are you’ll know whether you’ll win the battle or lose it before you begin.

An aside: You also do have the option of not viewing your startup (or work) as a battle.. more on that some other MondayMorning

You can listen to the full clip (4 mins) that elaborates the 3 points here.