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What they don't teach you at B-schools
V M Wabgaonkar
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August 14, 2007

Hard working, Vivacious Kiran is an MBA with a good standing, but she is still single. Her plump figure brings proposals she doesn't like. She doesn't get down to dieting or exercise, either. A soft, meditative MBA, Aniket is very bright in writing.

However, his presentations are shy and subdued. He often carries meditative moods to social situations. The result: a lacklustre love life. Introverted Anamika, a topper, writes well but the quantum of her output is a far cry from her true potential. She is easily hurt, it makes her tired, sour from inside, and this attitude leaves much to be desired in her work.

They are all MBAs engaged in consultancy work at a reputed multinational. However, their business schools never taught them 'brain management'!

Brain management refers to managing the mind not only for incremental effectiveness, but also for magical results -- as practised by Milton Erickson, Richard Bandler and so on. Their writings bear names like NLP, time-line therapy and hypnosis.

When any stimulus stops changing, our nerves stop sending its signals to the brain. Without such evolution, we would have remained consciously aware of our bodies even in the middle of activities that need absorption, such as sleep.

Similarly, to keep a feeling alive, we have to keep it circulating inside. With some practice, we can become aware of the paths that prominent feelings follow in our bodies. Imagine touching the depths of tranquillity, romance, a go-getter mood at will, as required.

Language is a wonderful example of a skill that we learn consciously, but practice enough to make it an unconscious process. Otherwise, just imagine the inconvenience of consciously locating every letter, every word and its required arrangement right in the middle of a communication process.

It is the unconscious mind that hastens the heartbeats as you walk faster. For that matter, the unconscious mind controls every single body process of every single cell. 

The most magical and sweeping results of 'body-mind management' and 'brain management' come about by establishing communication with the unconscious. In my example above, Kiran will benefit tremendously if she can do that. Analogously, so will thousands of corporate managers who suffer from blood pressure, acidity and ulcers because of their fear of failure and high stress levels.     

B-schools are doing a great job of handing over a gate pass to aspiring young boys and girls for their entry into the corporate world. However, as yet, they are leaving the tougher job of honing up the body and the mind for maximum effectiveness to the youngsters themselves. 

V M Wabgaonkar graduated from the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta, in 1988.

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