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Personal branding- a priority?

Written By kom nampultig on Rabu, 23 Juli 2014 | 18.47

Personal branding is about carving a niche that serves as an insurance against economic hiccups

As individuals and organisations try to figure out how to stay afloat in the ever so volatile economy, personal branding comes across as the messianic and one of the most logical solutions to the riddle of how to adapt, thrive and succeed in cut-throat competition.

In the contemporary scenario, brands are everything, and all organisations and the products and services that they offer are all about creating a buzz around themselves. With the advent of social media and its warm endorsements by the market, the boundary between work and personal life has become non-existential; hence, you define your work and in turn your work defines you. From the corporate point of view, personal branding is all about becoming one with the workforce and project ing an aura of innovation, productivity, loyalty and growth while for an employee, it's all about establishing and improving one's expertise and demonstrating the quality of work, so as to carve a niche that serves as an insurance against economic hiccups.

Personal branding is an exceptionally powerful concept that exudes a crystal clear gesture about who you are, what you can do and how well can you do it. It sets you apart from everybody in the ranks and establishes you as an authority of your realm. It amplifies the reach of your ideas, your thoughts and most importantly, you! Also, the great online propeller called social media allows anybody to lay a foundation regarding their individual and unique approach to handle things and also it provides a channel to know and understand how the common masses perceive that image. All these perceptions and reactions can be very fruitful with current and future customers and also employers. Building a brand around yourself not only allows you to scan through the existing prospective people have about you, but also to control it. Once you've established an adamantine brand, it can be used an invaluable asset. Building a personal brand is not only a tactic but also an assurance that with the growth of an individual and/or organisation, the brand image can be utilised as a tool to advance professionally and build a flawless image. It enhances self-awareness and clarifies the roadmap to one's goal. Personal branding also is extremely beneficial in creating and enhancing your presence and visibility at a humongous level.

One of the benefits of a powerful personal brand is that it gets you all the kind of clients, thereby increasing your business potential and maintains consistency in the flow. Whether you are an individual or a company, your reputation is enhanced and you take up the leadership role that adds prestige to your brand. You become a powerful trend in itself and that is one of the strong pulls that sells these days. But contradictory to the common perception, brands take time to develop and grow. Also, brands evolve organically; hence they demand consistency and a lot of clarity. The cornerstone for brand building is public image or perception, which is based on the connection one makes alongside trust, delivery and success.

The author is VP and head, corporate communications and media relations at Aptech Ltd

(Shrutidhar Paliwal)

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/followceleb.cms?alias=Work,personal branding,organisations,gesture,brands

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Hindu temples documented in a Pakistani book

Pakistani author Reema Abbasi will launch here July 23 her new book "Historic Temples in Pakistan - A Call to Conscience" documenting Hindu shrines, and pilgrimage sites in Pakistan through 400 photographs.

The book highlights unreported aspects of harmony, and will act as a window for the people of India, feels Abbasi who will launch the book at India International Centre.

As a researcher and author, Abbasi, along with the photographer Madiha Aijaz, took almost a year to traverse each province and their many crevices to explore antiquated sacred sites.

Abbasi's book chronicles various pilgrimage sites like Hinglaj, Katas Raj, Kalka cave temple, Panchmukhi Hanuman Mandir and Shivala Mandir located in different areas of Pakistan.

"The purpose of this book is multi-layered," Abbasi told us in an email interview.

"It seeks a journey towards pluralism, preservation of some of the most ancient places in history, tolerance and participation, empowerment of a community, which is facing a major onslaught of hardliner menace towards the north, and promote religious tourism and peace," she added.

Abbasi also feels the book will highlight aspects that often go unreported such as harmony among the people.

"I hope it will be a window to the people in India as we have showcased the fervour of festivals," she said.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/followceleb.cms?alias=Reema Abbasi,Raj Kalka,photographer,Madiha Aijaz,journey

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Esha Gupta gives the saree a crop twist

Saree ideas with a twist has many fashionistas take the atypical route to looking trendy.

The crop top has really made the world of fashion take a serious look at this fashion fad. While leading ladies of Bollywood have already endorsed the crop top by including it in their wardrobe, hottie Esha Gupta took the trend forward by adding a twist to the tale.

During one of her promotional outings during the promos of Humshakal, the leggy lass was seen sporting a pink saree with a matching crop top blouse. What made this combo a heady mix of fashion sense and style is the silver jewellery that the sexy siren sported which completely gave a trendy look to the actress.

While crop seems to be the way forward, the way Esha teamed the crop top with a saree in a very fashionable way, certainly got the required eyeballs. The crop top blouse with a saree certainly is here to stay as it seems. It is trendy at the same time it is more convenient with all its easy cuts that makes the crop top a hot favourite among the aspiring fashionistas.

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6 best rain-themed books to read this monsoon

Jara Brishti Te Bhijechilo, Joy Goswami His poetry is a happy marriage of fantasy and reality. Those who have read Meghbalikar Janyo Roopkatha know that Joy Goswami shares a long and intense relationship with rain. In his partly-autobiographical novel, Jara Brishtite Bhijechilo, the rain is not a backdrop, but a character. It doesn't matter if you have seen the celluloid adaptation by Anjan Das; the book gets you closer to the latent poetry in the prose, typical of Joy. It sure makes for a melancholy reading, but then rain is as much about pain as it is about Joy.

Borshamongol, Srijato When a book is dedicated to 'hariye jawa chhatader' (to all the lost umbrellas), you can well be sure that it's the collection of poems you want to lay your hands on when rain pitter-patters on your window pane. The young poet with an incredibly romantic heart has portrayed monsoon in Kolkata in a way few can. The best thing about the book is that it's also a celebration of love and comes in an envelope with poems written on cards. One of the poems reads, 'Aye flyovere-footpathey aar bhejash joto paris/Chhilo Kolkata tor bondhu, takey premik bana, barish!' The power of the collection? Even the waterlogged streets make you fall in love with Kolkata.

The Blue Umbrella, Ruskin Bond Curl up in an easy chair with this Ruskin Bond masterpiece on a rain-drenched afternoon and get a small piece of your childhood back, just like that! Vishal Bhardwaj's cinematic version will surely cross your mind when you read this poignant story, but that only adds to the experience. Seeing Shreya Sharma as the sweet Biniya and Pankaj Kapoor as Nandu Khatri (Ram Bharosa in the book) in your mind's eye and reliving their tussle for acquiring the precious blue umbrella will transport you to the rolling hills of Himachal Pradesh, where rain paints a picture pretty enough to make you forget the daily drudgery of this concrete and steel jungle.

Golpoguccho, Rabindranath Tagore It's impossible to talk about books, rains and not mention the Bard — Rabindranath Tagore. His Golpoguccho defines what short stories should be like. And rain, with its ominous presence, surfaces in many of the stories. Remember the tragic rainy night when Kadambari had to prove she hadn't died by dying in Jibito o Mrito or rain playing Cupid in Apurba-Mrinalini's life in Samapti? There are numerous such instances when rains cast a spell with Tagore's magical touch.

Chasing the Monsoon, Alexander Frater It rains through the whole book! That's what you'll feel when you read Alexander Frater's Chasing the Monsoon. Some years ago, the author decided to follow the trail of Indian monsoon and on reading this book, will make you realize that how a non-fiction can still read like a beautiful story, how unique each corner of our country is and last but not the least, how rain can have myriad hues depending on the locale and people. Frater's bizarre experiences mixed with touches of Indian history and anthropology makes this book an interesting read and also a perfect companion of cha and telebhaja.

Raat Bhorey Brishti, Buddhadeb Basu This book made headlines at the time it was published and was banned by the then government in Bengal on charges of obscenity. Rain plays an aphrodisiac and a catalyst in this triangular love story. The sexual intonations are bold and unapologetic and perhaps that's what makes this book a unique read. For bookworms, who are not familiar with Buddhadeb Basu's style of writing, Raat Bhorey Brishti is a good piece to start with. His words are unadorned, realistic and often brutal, but he romanticizes rain like no other.

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Foods that don't let you slim down

Your diet staples could be sabotaging your efforts to slim down and denying you vitamins and minerals

Those low-fat, low-taste alternatives passed off as 'health foods' could, in fact, be costing you your health. It's easy to be misled with labels such as 'high fiber', and 'natural'. In reality, many so called 'healthy' foods contain high levels of fat, sugar and salt. Reading the ingredient list and nutrition facts column could help you choose the right items. Here's a round up of the things you consider good that may actually be bad:

You think honey is healthier and more natural than sugar? You are wrong. Both contain similarly high levels of glucose. Because honey is denser, one tablespoon actually contains more calories than the same sized spoonful of granulated sugar. Eat too much honey and you'll gain just as much weight as you will gorging on other sweet stuff.

Low-fat salad dressing
Scientists at Iowa State University, US, have found that low-fat dressing cancels out the goodness in salad. Conversely, using olive oil, or a little butter, boosted vitamin intake because fat helps your body absorb nutrients from vegetables more efficiently.

Breakfast cereals
Studies show that people who eat cereal for breakfast tend to be slimmer than those who don't — but only if they're opting for a healthy brand. Choose the wrong box and you may as well start your day with a slice of cake, as some cereals are high in sugar and fat. The main ones to watch out for are your flavoured, chocolate and sugar-coated or frosted kids' ones. So always read the label. Not that you need to skip the cereal aisle altogether — experts agree that tucking into a bowl of porridge or any other wholegrain cereal is actually healthy. Naturally low in calories and high in fibre, these will help keep you fuller for longer and ward off midmorning snacking.

Skimmed milk
Although guzzling whole milk has been demonised as a health no-no in recent years, research shows that it could be a better choice than its skimmed counterpart.

Whole milk only contains around 4 per cent fat per 100ml as opposed to the 20 per cent plus deemed to be in the 'high fat' category. Skimmed milk contains 0.1 per cent fat. So switching from whole to skimmed milk won't make a huge difference.

Skimmed milk is less nutritious because cream contains fatsoluble vitamins A, D, E and K. Research reveals that full-fat milk boosts metabolism and help you burn more calories, while also lowering the risk of heart disease.

Raw vegetables
Cooking is believed to kill the vitamins and minerals, but studies have found the opposite. While cooking may destroy some (but not all) vitamin C, the process boosts the uptake of disease-fighting nutrients — antioxidants. A 2008 study found that vegetables such as carrots, spinach, mushrooms, asparagus, cabbage and peppers supply more antioxidants when cooked than when eaten raw. This is because cooking breaks down vegetables' thick cell walls, making it easier for the body to absorb the nutrients they contain. Steaming is best, then gentle boiling. Frying preserves the least vitamins and minerals.

Diet drinks
They seem like a straightforward way for soft drink lovers to cut calories but experts think diet drinks could actually scupper weight loss. While the artificial sweeteners in such drinks can convince the taste buds they're consuming sugar, the brain can't be tricked so easily. When it's denied the calories it's expecting, your body goes on a calorie hunt, making you feel hungry and eat more. Which is why consuming diet drinks can make people more likely to pile on weight, than reduce it.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/followceleb.cms?alias=Vitamin C,Iowa State University,heart,goodness,cake

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Fight, kiss and make up

Written By kom nampultig on Selasa, 22 Juli 2014 | 18.47

On World Marriage Day, we give you a lowdown on how to settle the little issues, that often blow up to derail a marriage or a relationship.

Tiff factor: Be it bills, keys or household items, your spouse never puts them away in the right place, in spite of you constantly reminding him/her. Since you are particular about tidiness and order, this annoys you to no end.

Troubleshoot: In a problem that arises due to conflicting personalities, remind yourself that you married this person, not only because you shared some similarities, but also for the differences! Voice your concerns respectfully and explain to your spouse your personal need for order and cleanliness in the house.

Tiff factor: You both decide to save up money for an international vacation that you plan to take in six months. But your spouse can't resist, goes impulse-shopping and comes home with an expensive watch or dress, much to your chagrin.

Troubleshoot: You might be seething with anger and will harbour grudges against your spouse, but the key is to communicate and tell him/her how you feel. Your reaction is justified but impulse-shopping has already happened. Instead of sulking, book the vacation immediately, so that the money is partly-invested in the holiday. If your partner continues with his/her spending habits in the future too, go alone or with your friends. Send photographs to show that you are having a gala time without him/her. Your spouse will realise what he/she is missing out on.

Tiff factor: Many a time, you are not in the mood or simply too tired to heat things up between the sheets. Unintentionally, you rebuff your spouse's romantic advances, thus making him/her feel unwanted, ruining not just the night but even the following morning.

Troubleshoot: Sex experts estimate that one out of every three married couples struggles with mismatched sexual desire; i.e. when one spouse is in the mood, the other is not. But being complacent about your sex life is a formula for disaster, because when your spouse is sexually dissatisfied and you are oblivious, sex isn't the only casualty; intimacy on every level becomes non-existent. If you're not in the mood, there are ways you can build up a desire: a scent, romantic or seductive words, etc. trigger fantasies, which in turn, will trigger a sexual urge.

Tiff factor: After returning home from office, your spouse spends most of his/her time working on the laptop or attending work calls at the dinner table. You're upset because you expect him/her to converse with you, as that's the only time in the whole day you get together. Troubleshoot: Instead of arguing about the problem when your partner is working on the laptop, proactively address this issue at another time. You two need to consciously carve out more time together and this might require some negotiation. If you don't get time on weekdays, keep aside exclusive, non-working weekends, so that you can spend uninterrupted time together.

A kiss for a longer life!

Research suggests that due to jobs, kids, hobbies and family responsibilities, married couples spend just four minutes a day together!

The average couple has sex 58 times a year, slightly more than once a week.

More than friendship, laughter, forgiveness, compatibility, or sex, spouses name trust as the most crucial element for a happy marriage.

Men who kiss their wives in the morning are said to live five years longer than those who don't!

Tiff factor: Your spouse doesn't get along with your close friends and every time you invite them over, he/she makes their dislike obvious through sarcasm! Despite your several attempts to make peace between your spouse and your friend, things are far from rosy.

Troubleshoot: Refrain from a 'sales pitch' of one to the other. People, who inherently dislike each other may not change their views and opinions, but with time, will learn to accept things as they are. So instead of forcing your spouse and friend to be best buddies, you need to first accept the truth yourself. Next, explain to them individually that they need to respect the relationship you share with each of them and hence, you expect them to be cordial with one another, if nothing more.

How to fight fair


Attack the issue, not your spouse. Name-calling puts people in a position to respond angrily and defensively. It breaks down communication and destroys trust in the marriage.

Take responsibility. Use 'I' statements as a way of showing that you are taking responsibility for your own feelings and actions.

Deal with one issue at a time.Try not to pile up several complaints into one session. If you have a different problem you'd like to address, save it for the next discussion.


Don't interrupt, or pass comments while your spouse is speaking. Also, rolling your eyes, smirking, yawning etc. all work against fair fighting.

Don't involve other people's opinions while arguing (eg: Your mother also agrees with me.) The only opinions that matter are of the two of you. Don't make threats, especially of divorcing. While fighting, threatening to leave the relationship is manipulative and hurtful. It will erode your partner's confidence in your commitment to the relationship.

Whenever Roopak and I have fights, we make up very fast. In fact, I say 'sorry'a 100 times if I have to! I believe a couple shouldn't go to bed without solving their problems. — Tara Sharma, TV host

"My husband and I fight almost every day on whether the toilet seat should be up or down. Another issue that leads to an argument is my husband after returning from work, tries to wake up the kids, who are fast asleep. After every argument one of us has to give in... till another issue crops up. We solve our problems on a day-to-day basis. — Ramneek Pantal, model

The most frequent fight my wife, Leena, and I have is on spending time together. Due to my shooting schedule, I can't give her enough time and that leads to fights. It's justified on her part to question me but since I'm committed to my work, I'm also not at fault. Over time, I have realised that the smartest, safest and simplest solution to any marital problem is to say 'sorry'. —Swwanil Joshi, actor

We always fight on why my dress is so short or why he has to text while having lunch! Some of these minor issues have been going on for years. Honestly, i always look forward to a fight because the making up after is so hot! — Manasi Parekh, actress

Inputs by clinical psychologist Seema Hingorrany, marriage counsellor Dr Minnu Bhonsle and psychiatrists Dr Anjali Chhabria and Dr Harish Shetty.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/followceleb.cms?alias=tv host,Seema Hingorrany,Minnu Bhonsle,Harish Shetty,Friends

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How to give time to your relationship

Not every relationship will see immediate sparks flying and that instant connect and a great chemistry.

Every relationship needs a gestation period and the period differs from person to person. Be it an arranged marriage or a love marriage, the understanding and trust comes gradually. This makes it important to give each other time to understand and build trust in a relationship that will benefit two souls in the long run. Here is how to go about a steady relationship:

Understanding personal preferences
It is not necessary for both of you think and feel alike. Personal preferences change and it is here that making some moves to understanding each other's likes and dislikes comes handy.

Respect each other
A condescending look is what avoidable if you wish your relationship to bloom. Giving respect to your partner's thoughts and beliefs is a positive way to start a healthy relation. You can take it forward by valuing each other's inputs on the way you guys lead your life.

Share perspective
Everyone has a unique perspective on life. Sharing that will only make you get closer and understand each other better. So, while you spend time together, don't hesitate to talk about what vision you have about the world outside and about life.

Spend time together
Spending time together need not be an expensive affair. It can be done at home and in a quieter place. But during the initial days of a relationship when both of you are new, spending ample time with each other brings two person even close.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/followceleb.cms?alias=relationship,love marriage,couple,chemistry,arranged marriage

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Restaurant review: Tadka Singh

Modelled after the dhabas of Grand Trunk Road and transmogrified into a quick-serve format, Tadka Singh dishes out Punjabi khaana in hygienic settings.

Decor Shocking pink and canary-yellow colours are sure to catch your attention. The venue is very different from asli dhabas, which have rope-strung cots and mustard greens growing in the backyard. But this is the city. A washing machine is embedded in the cash counter, not to launder your money, but to serve as an icon of jugaad by the enterprising people of Punjab, who use it ingeniously to make lassis in bulk. Witty slogans on the outside wall, like, 'No Maida, No Colour, No Nonsense', provide much food for thought.

Food Pavandeep Singh, the young and enthusiastic owner, wants to build this homegrown brand and stand up to other fast-food companies. That explains the portions, which are single servings — a boon for the single diner. This is upmarket dhaba food, but with a leaner touch, and that's a welcome change from excessive grease. We started by ordering the Murgh Malai Kababs and Achari Paneer Tikkas; both were perfect and went well with crisp and flaky Amritsari Paranthas. Chole, another Punjabi staple, was not your usual fare; instead, the dish had been made in lighter masala and served with Amritsari Kulchas. Stuffed Paranthas — aloo, gobi and paneer variations — were good, though we would have preferred more filling. Keema Mutton, or 'meat' as it is called in the north, was served with pav, an interesting change from the usual naan. Do try the coarsely ground Palak Paneer and Dal Makhani — they are both home-style versions. Rajma Chawal has the 'Vaishnavi' dhaba texture and will remind you of holidays spent in hill stations up north. Drop in for a quick lunch and you can nibble on some delicious Butter Paneer, Egg Bhurji, Butter Chicken and Keema Rolls. They had run out of Matka Kulfi, which would have been our first choice on a hot summer afternoon, but a lovely Kheer made with aromatic, reduced milk and rice made our day.

Plus and Minus Do not go here looking for rich Punjabi food, because the management wants you to come more often and not feel stuffed. Also laudable is the fact that they don't use maida or refined flour.

Venue: Tadka Singh, 538, CMH Road, Indiranagar, opposite Indiranagar Metro Station, Bangalore — 560038 Meal for two: `600 Timings: 12 pm-12 am

Service: 3.5 Decor: 3.5

Must Try: Amritsari Chole Kulcha, Rajma Chawal, Keema Pav and Kheer

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/followceleb.cms?alias=Tadka Singh,Restaurant review,Food,decor,Amritsari Chole Kulcha

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Men's fashion: Check that

Watch our B-town men jazz up the conventional checks

Instant addiction
He's suave and he knows it. Trust Akshay Kumar to work a trend outstandingly. And it's the tiny chain detail on his checked waistcoat that leaves us impressed. The crisp white shirt and suede shoes are perfect.

Oh, the attitude!
Look who's looking dapper as ever. Arjun Kapoor adds some colour to his two-toned blue attire with a checked shirt. It actually brings the look together. Smart move!

Hero alert
Varun Dhawan prefers to work his checked shirt as a jacket. We'd never mix it up with a tee, rugged pants and leather shoes.
But he certainly owns this look, doesn't he?

Chocolate boy Sidharth Malhotra keeps it simple with a blue checked shirt and faded denims. Red shoes would've stood out here but he sticks to all-blue. Nice, eh?

(Compiled by Karishma Loynmoon)

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How to fake an orgasm

Achieving the perfect ten out of ten in bed each time is not as a simple task as it appears. Well, the equations of intimacy too get affected owing various reasons. And when it becomes important to keep each other happy, one can always get some faking tips to steam up the climactic results. Here's how:

Say it sexy It always feels nice when your partner says some nice stuff in your ear when you guys are it. Even if you are not getting closer to orgasm and somehow find it this is not the day when you are going to have the perfect climactic pleasure, you can fake it by saying something very nice which will make your partner feel better. It can be a compliment on the way your partner kisses you or touches you or can be on what is that thing that arouses you the most. It will make both of you involved till the last minute.

Make some gentle noises It is not necessary to have orgasm each time you have sex, because there are some days which leave both you guys completely taxed on work front. So when you realize one of you is having a tough time getting the climactic pleasure, just make some encouraging moves. The moves can be verbal too. Sometimes, one realizes these sounds come naturally during those close encounters. So, make your partner feel you are equally enjoying the experience as you stick to those sounds that you usually make. Don't go overboard with the sounds, because your body language also gives an indication that you are faking it. So, be subtle with your praising noises.

Fake it right In addition to what you say, what you do also matters a lot, especially when you are faking it. Even if you can't fake it 100 percent, you can get closer by sticking to some touch mechanism. A peck here, a bite there and a gentle caress here and there will make your partner more wanted. After all, that what makes a union special.

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