Effectiveness

Embrace Kindness During Times of Stress

Embrace Kindness

When you’re living in times of uncertainty and stress, it’s important to embrace kindness. This means being kind both to others and to yourself. It’s normal that when under stress, people have “short fuses.” Little things can quickly spiral out of control as negativity prevails. The good news is that you can help lessen the effects of the current situation’s turmoil in one simple way: Embrace Kindness.

As a youth I developed this attitude of kindness that I still use to this day. I make it a habit to choose to be kind to not only others, but also to myself. I learned at an early age that I was not perfect, that I made mistakes, and that sometimes I … >>>

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Visualization Enhances Effectiveness

Visualization is a key to success. Did you know that your brain is so powerful that even your imagination can propel you to your goals? The fact is that the images you visualize in your mind impact your reality. Knowing this, what images are you focusing on? Are they positive, and propelling you to success? Or are they negative, and holding you back from accomplishing everything you want in life?

French psychiatrist and philosopher Pierre Janet pioneered guided imagery, AKA “visualization,” in the 1890s. It developed from the discovery that a person’s imagination can affect his or her inner state of being. Certain images stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system to experience feelings of calm and well-being.

Many professionals, including therapists … >>>

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Make People Feel Good to Increase Effectiveness

Make People Feel Good

People do better when they feel good—not when they feel bad. This is a simple fact of life.

When your guide your thoughts and others’ thoughts to focus on the positive and constructive, then the self is nourished and enriched. That’s when people feel good.

Andrew Carnegie, the first great industrialist in America, understood this concept well. At one point he had 43 millionaires working for him. A reporter asked him how he managed to hire all of those millionaires. He responded that none of them was a millionaire when he hired them. The reporter inquired, “Then what did you do to pay them enough money so that they became millionaires?” Carnegie responded that you develop people the same way … >>>

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An Easy Way to End Disagreement

Disagreement between people causes stress; there’s no doubt about it. Whether the disagreement is large or small, it can quickly ruin a relationship.

Sometimes, even for small matters, the disagreement escalates to the point of verbal fighting. Once that occurs, the stress levels of both parties will be high, and agreement will be elusive. Fortunately, you always have a choice in how you handle a situation.

Chances are you can tell when a disagreement is escalating. This is when you must take control and direct the conversation. Rather than letting a disagreement get out of hand, you can reduce stress by doing the following.

Say to the other person, “I don’t want to win. I just want to understand what … >>>

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Appreciation Goes a Long Way

The dictionary defines appreciation as the recognition of the quality, value, significance, or magnitude of people and things. When was the last time you felt truly appreciated at work or at home? When was the last time you genuinely showed your appreciation for others? Is showing appreciation really that important?

One of the founding fathers of modern psychology, Dr. William James, spent his professional life studying human behavior. He wanted to know what made people tick, and he wanted to know what brought out their best. He wrote a number of books on these subjects.

Near the end of his life, he was in hospital and received a plant from a friend. Dr. James wrote a note of thanks for … >>>

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The Importance of Positive Expectations

It’s true that life can be challenging at times. But no matter what you’re going through, it is possible to project positive expectations. And when you do, you’ll become more effective in everything you do.

Realize that becoming more effective is a way of traveling rather than a destination. In other words, it’s a state of mind, not a single event. That’s where projecting positive expectations comes into play.

The only advantage of being a pessimist is that all your surprises are pleasant. But that’s pretty small stuff compared to the big payoff that comes from projecting positive expectations.

The fact is that much of our happiness or unhappiness results from not by what happens, but how we LOOK at … >>>

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What Do You Visualize?

How do you visualize yourself and your situation? The fact is that the pictures you reflect on in your mind are often what your reality becomes. Are you filling your mind with positive pictures or negative ones?

Too many people focus their mental energy on the challenges they are encountering or the pain they want to avoid. They visualize their setbacks repeatedly. While you certainly can’t ignore your daily struggles, you also don’t have to let them dominate your thoughts. Give yourself a break. Take some time to focus on what’s good in your life and to paint positive mental images of what you want, rather than what you don’t.

The choice is yours. You can visualize success, or you … >>>

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7 Things That Never Prompt Change

Chances are that at one point you’ve attempted to change another person. We’ve all done it. Unfortunately, most people try to prompt change in others the wrong way.

Dr. William Glasser, the originator of “Reality Therapy” and “Choice Theory,” believed that attempts to change others by using “external control psychology” (including the common approaches of imposing punishments or rewarding to control) are eventually doomed to fail. He referred to such “external approaches” as the “seven deadly habits.” He listed them as: criticizing, blaming, complaining, nagging, threatening, punishing, and rewarding to control.

To prove his point, just respond to the following:

  • How do you feel when someone criticizes you?
  • How do you feel when someone blames you?
  • How do you feel
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The Problem with “Why” Questions

One of the most common questions people ask others is “why?”

“Why did you do that?”

“Why did you say that?”

“Why is this happening?”

Interestingly, the least effective question to ask in almost any situation is a “why” question.

A few reasons that I do not ask “why” questions to a person, especially during times of conflict or irresponsible behavior are:

  1. The person may not know the motivation.
  2. He or she may not be able to articulate the motivation.
  3. The person may not want to tell you the real reason.
  4. The person may give an excuse, rather than take responsibility.
  5. There is no beneficial effect in asking, as it only satisfies curiosity.
  6. It takes the focus away from changing
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Warm Up to Your Fear

Fear is often negative self-talk about a perceived situation. You’ve probably heard that FEAR is actually an acronym for False Evidence Appearing Real. However, even knowing this, there are times when it is most difficult to think that a situation is not real. So rather than attempting to eradicate your fear, warm up to it.

Too many people have the mindset of “If I’m afraid, I can’t do something.” But the truth is that you can do it even if you are afraid; it’s just less comfortable than doing something you are not afraid to do. But if you do it a couple of times, you won’t be afraid to do it anymore, and it will become more and more … >>>

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Good Listening Skills Reduces Stress AND Improves Relationships

Having good listening skills will make your life easier and your relationships less stressful. In fact, if you ask yourself how you know someone cares for you, one of your responses is likely to be that you know because the person listens to you.

Without good listening skills, no relationship can flourish. Ask a husband about a good wife, and he is likely to say that he knows his wife cares for him because she listens to what he has to say. Ask a wife about a good husband, and she’ll respond that he listens to her.

This is true with children too. When the parent says, “It’s about time you started listening to me,” chances are the youngster is … >>>

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Anyone Can be an Optimist

Do you consider yourself an optimist or a pessimist? In simple terms, an optimist focuses on hope. A pessimist focused on doubt. An optimist thinks about the good that can be in a situation. A pessimist thinks about all the things that could go wrong in a situation.

Positivity (or what I call ‘conscious optimism’) promotes and induces responsibility in everyone, including children. A positive attitude, just like happiness, begins between the ears. Both are skills that anyone can develop.

In fact, the most important thing people can control is their state of mind. Is your state of mind more like an optimist or a pessimist? You really do have a choice! A state of mind is something that one … >>>

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Your Mindset Determines Your Success

One of the great approaches to successful living is to develop the art of prompting positive mindsets. The fact is that your mindset and success are intimately intertwined.

For example, suppose I lay a plank on the ground. Almost anyone can easily walk on the plank from one end to the other. But if I were to raise the plank 10 feet off the ground, how many people do you think would get across it without falling? I would guess quite a few people would fall off the plank.

Why can people walk the plank when it’s on the ground but not while it’s elevated? A prime reason is that when the plank is on the ground, people imagine success. … >>>

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Impulse Control for Kids

Teaching impulse control for kids can be a challenge. If you want to become a more effective adult when working with young people, then give up the desire to control. Instead, hand over to the young the responsibility of learning to control themselves. This is important for every child but especially important for those young people who have repeated discipline and impulse control challenges.

The key to fostering impulse control for kids is to use the Levels of Development all the time so that it isn’t associated with corrective discipline. In fact, the more you use the hierarchy, the more young people will understand the difference between external and internal motivation. They will also become open to using the hierarchy … >>>

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Influence Others to Succeed

When it comes to having an influence on others, it’s not only what you say, but also how you say it, as well as all the things you don’t say.

Words can be extremely powerful and influential. Every word spoken to another, especially a child, carries with it an underlying message about the person and his or her relationship to the world.

It’s the same for the non-verbal messages you give. Everything you do without using words can influence the other person and cause a response, whether positive or negative.

Once the other person internalizes a message, it becomes a belief that can affect many aspects of their life. Knowing this, you can certainly influence students to operate on Level … >>>

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Develop the Skill of Perseverance

Perseverance is a vital skill to develop. In fact, one of the most important principles we can teach children is that effective and responsible people persist in their endeavors. They don’t give up easily. In fact, a major quality that classifies people as successful is that they stick to a task. They display perseverance.

What is it that enables certain people to persevere? Usually, they have a repertoire. They create many different ways to solve a problem.

Why is this important? Because if people have only one way to solve a problem, and if they try it and it doesn’t work, they will have a tendency to give up.

People who persist, however, will try one plan. If that approach … >>>

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Confront Negativity with Positivity

Positivity is important. And sometimes we need to think of the meaning behind what we like to keep. This applies to both physical and mental keepsakes. Are your thoughts and possessions promoting positivity? Or do you need to let go of some outdated beliefs?

Here is a case in point.

For years I have had a little statue describing an ancient morality. The tiny statue that sat on my desk portrayed three little monkeys. One had hands over the eyes, another with hands over the ears, and a third with hands over the mouth.

The message was to see no evil, hear no evil, and speak no evil. The philosophy portrayed in the little figures is that good is found … >>>

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Your Words are Powerful

Your words are powerful. In fact, I often say that people do good when they feel good. This is true of adults and children. Children who act on Levels C and D of the Levels of Development chart feel good. While those who act on Levels A and B have more negative feelings. What are you doing to help others do good? Is your language uplifting others? Or are your words bringing people down?

Yes, your words are powerful and what you say often has a big impact on others. While many people don’t intentionally say outright mean or nasty things to others, they may use other subtle words or sentence patterns that disempower others.

Your Words Matter

The great … >>>

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