26 Questions & Answers for Corporate Managers & Leaders

Peronsal Interview from the Book Compulsive Living to Conscious Living

Are you someone going through lots of stress and tension in your corporate career?

This one article will give you lots of strategies and ideas on how to balance your work-life and lead a stress-free living.

I personally believe that,

Great Questions brings out Great Answers.

Recently I was interviewed by Author Senthil Raj for his newly published book “Compulsive Living to Conscious Living“.

This book features 23 personal interviews with successful entrepreneurs and influential leaders with their best practices and recommendations for you to lead a happy and fulfilling life.

In this article, I am going to share with you all the 26 Questions & Answers published in this book.

I would strongly recommend you guys to buy this book and get inspired.

Because, this is just not a book, but a workbook for happy living.


Following is an excerpt from the interview with Author Senthil Raj(SR) with the Happyness Coach Murali Sundaram….

SR: What are the three turning points in your life?

1.The first was the day I met my mentor Dr. Brian Tracy who made me realise that I should follow my passion of teaching.

2. The second turning point was the day my father died on my lap where I understood the intricacies/mysteries involved in the art of dying/living.

3. The third was the day I started BNI in Chennai with my friends which helped me to scale up my leadership capabilities.


SR: What is your definition of Success:

Success is a highly subjective word and according to me, “Success” means “How many Trust You” including yourself.

The more the number of people trust you in life and ready to do anything for you, then you can term yourself successful.

Whether the “success” you seek is more money, influence, peace, clients, reputation or enjoyment, you must go through yourself and other people to get it. And they won’t give it to you unless they trust you.

The starting point of success also known as trust is “You” – “Your ability to Trust yourself” determines your altitude of Success. That starts by being in Peace with yourself first. So in short “Peace” enable the “Trust” within you which propels you to “Success”.


SR: What are your top three daily practices which has helped you progress in life :

Waking up early, Yoga and Meditation, Reading and Writing.


SR: What is that One factor which motivates you to give your best:

Seeing the transformation in others gives me the highest kick and motivation to continuously serve the world. Those who “Give” realize true happiness and I believe I am born to “Give myself” to serve the humanity.


SR: What is that One thing you miss the most in your life:

With the blessings & grace of the divinity and my master, Life continues to provide me everything at the right time.

I actually do not miss anything in life. Life is so spectacularly designed which unfolds mysteriously second by second in front of our eyes. It is so fascinating to see how events/situations/people come and go in my life. It is so spectacular that everything in my life is happening with such delicate precision which I can only witness and enjoy, instead of dissecting and analysing it.

Since birth, I have myopia (short sightedness), so I need to wear my eyewear (spectacles) to witness this spectacular life unfolding in front of me. Sometimes, I wonder, what would be the world look like when seen through a naked eye instead of a spectacle.

SR: What one emotion of yours which consumes a lot of energy and the way you channelize it:

Being a Reiki Master and a practitioner of Yoga & Meditation for over thirty years, there a lots of breathing and visualization / psychic techniques available to channelize your internal energies and balance the panchabuthas (5 elements the body is made of) of this human machine.

I have learnt the art of channelizing my energies for the benefit and preservation of self so that I can serve the world in a better way. Actually, no emotion can consume me, because I am aware that I am not my emotion.


SR: A Book, Seminar, Movie or Song which has transformed your life:


1. Awaken the Giant Within by Tony Robbins

2. God Talks with Arjuna by Paramahamsa Yogananda

3. Holy Science by Sri Yukteswar Giri

4. I Ching – Books of Changes


1) “Shawshank Redemption” which is I guess comes down to a simple choice – Get busy living or get busy dying.,

2) “Forrest Gump” which is about you have to do the best with what God gave you and

3) “Iron Will” which is about “Your place is where your dreams are. Now you never forget that, never” and  “When you come to facing the thing you fear let the Creator guide you”



SR: What gives you the strength to move on when you feel alone:

I have never felt alone so far since my mission to help 1 billion people keeps me busy always.


SR: Top Values in your life are  

Modesty, Compassion and Clarity


SR: Top 3 Organisational Values are:

1. Implement with Speed & Value

2. Life-Long Learning

3. Servant Leadership (Mindset)

Servant Leadership is a leadership philosophy which is like having the heart of a servant to your fellow colleagues, client, vendors etc – In simple words always have the attitude “To Serve First”. The leader with this attitude works to serve others – puts the needs of others first. This one attitude helps in higher performance and job satisfaction.


SR: Your Definition of Happiness:

Let me share with you what I wrote in one of my best selling book “Happiness Habits


“One of the better definitions of happiness is “an inner state of well being which enables you to profit from your highest thoughts, wisdom, intelligence, common sense, emotions, health, and spiritual values in your life. Happiness is an emotional state which is an experience and not a concept. In simple words, Happiness is a subjective well-being”


Happiness is a by-product of thinking and behaving in a positive manner. An unhappy person who has a vague goal of obtaining happiness and is unprepared to changing his attitudes and behaviour is destined to failure. One focusing solely on, “I want happiness where can I find it?” is usually disappointed.


Rather, ask yourself, “What thoughts can I think to enable me to be happy” and, “What specific behaviours or habits should I engage in, that will increase my happiness?”


SR: What is the the single most important challenge faced by people in corporate environment?

In my opinion, across organisational levels all over the planet is “lack of oxygen supply to the brain” because of improper / rapid breathing leading to lack of clarity, poor decision making, lesser energy to stay focused and hence easily very low productivity.


SR: The most important challenge you face in life:

Finding the right leader or creating the right leader to delegate and empower him/her is one of the biggest challenge in my life.

I enjoy this challenge because this gives me the opportunity to introspect, sharpen my leadership capability and grow continuously. So this is a good problem to solve in my life


SR: Most employees live a Compulsive and Stressful Life due to:

Lack of ability to handle their own mind.

Managing your “Mind” should be your top most priority before you mind others business. 99% of employees run their personal and professional life either in the past or on the future.

Stress occurs due to the simple mis-match between the current reality and what we want. They never take the efforts to train their mind to be in the present moment of awareness, take stock of their current inventory and mindfully move forward in life.


SR: Implications of high stress levels at work and in family:

Today “Stress” is the number one reason for all the disease in the world right from common cold, headache, migraine, back pain or even cancer. Enough research has proven that “Stress” reduces the ability to think clearly, think faster and complete tasks on time.

Today increase in absenteeism and increase in corporate medical expenses can be attributed to the high level of stress at the work-spot. High stress reduces productivity, customer satisfaction and hence the profitability of the organisation.

Increasing number of relationship failures, divorces, infertility and medical expenses in family life are just a few implications caused by “Stress”.


SR: Why people are not able to overcome stress inspite of many sources of information

“Stress” cannot be managed by reading something from public sources or from books.

You need to put in sincere efforts and practices to get rid of your stress. You need to learn how to manage your mind first with few simple mindfulness practices, breathing exercises and meditation. So, let’s begin “Mind Management” to manage our stress.


SR: Is there a daring need for people to migrate from a Compulsive life to a more centered, composed and Conscious life?  

It’s high time, that each and one of us invest little time, money and energy for the well-being of ourselves.

You don’t have to wait for the organization to wake up and start sponsoring your wellness. It’s our life ultimately and if we cannot take charge of it, who else will?

“Now”, is the right time to move from a compulsive living to a conscious living – a life filled with peace, joy and harmony. The best gift to the people around us is allowing ourselves to be happy & joyful. That’s the best gift we can give back to the world.



SR: Ways to move from a compulsive living to conscious living?

Conscious Happy Living is a learnable skill, an art and gift to our loved ones around.

We can start with simple mindfulness practices like becoming aware of how we brush our teeth, how we take bath, simple breathing exercises, journaling, getting into daily rituals like yoga/meditation/prayer/contemplation etc.


SR: Top 3 practices you follow to overcome your stress and lead a peaceful life:

Breathing & Meditation

Writing my Happyness Journal(www.MyHappynessJournal.com)

Teaching others


SR: Top 3 practices you follow to balance your work-family life:

Balance is the key to Success and Happiness. But our balance gets tilted or de-stabilized when our mind is either work-full or personal problems-full.

Let me quickly share 3 simple ways to bring back the balance in life for peak performance.

1) Take a 10 minute physical/mental break after every 90 minutes of work. You need to create more empty space between each tasks. This helps you to bring balance and mental poise

2) When you leave work, leave the work there itself. Do not carry the work to home and carry the home to work. Leave the home, when you leave home. Leave the work, when you leave the work-spot.

3) Do not start your work as soon as you enter office. Relax for first few minutes. Breathe deeply for 5 minutes, list down the top 3 tasks of the day and then begin. Similarly once you reach home from office, Invest your first 5-10 minutes to align yourself with breathing/relaxation to dump all the physical/mental/emotional stressors of work-spot so that you can spend quality time with your kids and family.


SR: Top 3 practices you follow to lead a Happy & Conscious Living:

The first one hour of the day belongs to you. If you think, that is too much time for you, allocate 30 minutes or even 15 minutes. Let the first 15-60 minutes of the day is only for YOU.

The first one hour of the day determines your day, week, year & life. Here is a simple template I had personally practiced during my earlier part of my life. This is a good template for beginners.
i) First 10 mins – Physical Energization Exercise (Stretching, Basic Asanas or Surya Namaskar, Skipping, Jogging, Walking in your terrace etc)


ii) Second 10 mins – Breathing Exercises – Deep abdominal breathing, Pranayama etc


iii) Third 10mins – Silence/Meditation/Gratitude


iv) Fourth 10mins – Read a self development book, close the book & note down key points in a journal


v) Fifth 10 mins – Set goals for the day – for the next 24 hour only


vi) Sixth 10 mins – Close your eyes, mentally rehearse the day, pay your gratitude to your parents, family, friends, colleagues, company & the creator for all that you have right now in your life.
There is nothing called right or wrong. The timeline prescribed is only a guideline. You can modify the time allotment according to your interest levels.


Similarly before going back to bed, you can practice writing a happyness journal to keep a record of 3 good things that happened today in your life.


SR: Do you think we can transform our lives by quietening our mind, finding our inner peace, being a source of happiness to ourselves and others and from this state unfold our infinite potential and reach our ultimate life?

I am a huge fan of Maria Montessori and John Maxwell.

Maria Montessori says, “When we are born, we are born with a flame of imagination and an absorbent mind” and this mind is capable of infinite potentials.

I once read Maxwell stating that God’s gift to us our potential and our return gift to god, is to develop it. I completely agree with that we are born with unlimited potential and we just have to become aware of it.

When we learn to quieten our mind, we become aware of our purpose in life we are born to and start living towards that ultimate life.


SR:How will this impact the growth and success of the employee?

Clarity is the key to success in life and Clarity arises when the mud settles.


SR:How will this impact the growth and success of the Organisation?

Clarity in thinking, Creative Problem solving for the ever-demanding customer problems and higher customer delight are the trump card for financial success in this economical era.

This is possible only when the people in the organization are poised & emotionally balanced. This leads to effective utilization of their intelligence, proficiency and efficiency to produce the best results.

If an organization wants more economical wellness, it start from the mental resilience.


SR:How would you rank these three priorities in your life? 1. Work, 2. Family and 3. Self :

My ranking of these three priorities : 1. Self, 2. Family and 3. Work


SR:What is your mantra to lead a Happy and fulfilling life?

3 Step Mantra

Accept self/people/situations as they are.

Stop any Expectations from others.

Just do your best. Forget the outcome. Enjoy the Journey.


Hope you enjoyed reading the whole interview. It’s not in the content, its all in your action NOW!


You can buy the book and enjoy the full read!

Comment below what strategies you follow to upgrade your life from Compulsive living to a Conscious Living!

P.S: Books Mentioned in this post

  1. Compulsive Living to Conscious Living by Senthil Raj
  2. Awaken the Giant Within by Tony Robbins
  3. God Talks with Arjuna by Paramahamsa Yogananda
  4. Holy Science by Sri Yukteswar Giri
  5. I Ching – Book of Changes
  6. Happiness Habits by Murali Sundaram
  7. My Happyness Journal by Murali Sundaram

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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