Pain and the Brain

From Volume 9, Issue 9: My friend Mary Lore likes to say, “We are not our brains.” Her thesis is that, while allowing our brains to manage us works in many situations (letting our Knower/Judger persona respond to our environment, carry on our conversations, react to threats, etc.), we can be far more productive in other situations when we manage our brain. She would have us use the brain as a tool instead of having it use us as its tool. So I began to think about this as it pertains to pain, because we could all use less pain in our lives.

This Is Not a Dress Rehearsal

From Volume 9, Issue 9: Today. Right now. This moment. What you choose can and will affect the next moment. “I’ll get more chances,” I tell myself when I choose the donut even though I want to lose weight. “I don’t have to decide anything new right now.” But let’s take a closer look at that. Because aren’t we really preparing for the big show, our chance to respond in a new way, during the show itself?

The Violence Agenda

From Volume 9, Issue 8:Let’s face it…life in the U.S. is going to the dogs. The murder rate is the highest it’s ever been, and I risk being accosted just coming back from one of my beloved Cardinals games. It’s terrifying. And that’s exactly what those who have influence over us want us to believe. The truth is very different.

Moment of Clarity, September 2016, Polishing up character flaws.

What Was I Thinking?

From Volume 9, Issue 8:My friend Mary Lore likes to say that we are not our brains. She believes our brains (in the form of our Knower/Judger) run our lives too often. Patterns have repeated so often in the past that we’ve decided that’s just the way things are. “When this happens, then this is the response, and when that happens, that is the response.” Our “rules of life,” if you will. Our brains, which can only react, take over, and we can’t respond in new ways that might be more beneficial for us. So how do we overcome this?

Moment of Clarity, August 2016, Pure JOY in accomplishment

Shit or Get Off the Pot

From Volume 9, Issue 7:There have been times in my life when no saying was ever truer than the title of this article. It’s not a spot I can say I’m satisfied to be in, nor does it contribute to my general happiness. So why am I there—wanting to do something but unable to do it? Because I’m torn between two competing messages in my self-talk….you know, that chatter in your head you use to build yourself up or sometimes completely denigrate yourself? Here’s how to determine whether it’s time to go for it or get off the metaphorical toilet and focus on something else.

Decision, Decisions

From Volume 9, Issue 7:Life success guru Tony Robbins said, “A real decision is measured by the fact that you’ve taken a new action. If there’s no action, you haven’t truly decided.”

I think it’s subtler than that. I think we make decisions about a lot of things that don’t lead to action, but do lead to what I call “rule revision.” And revising the rule can make a huge difference in our lives.

Moment of Clarity, July 2016, Who’s lives matter?

Moment of Clarity June 2016, Red Cloud Moment

Figuring Out What You Really Want

From Volume 9, Issue 6:With many of my clients, we get to an impasse when we try to figure out what they really want. The challenge with simply asking the question is that I almost always get a Knower/Judger, politically correct, react-rather-than-respond answer. And frequently the answer refers more to a need (which is K/J-based, egocentric, and satisfying) than a want (which is Learner/Researcher-based, present, and happiness-oriented). Here’s how I figure out what I want.

One Easy Way to Improve Employee Engagement

From Volume 9, Issue 6:Recently, several managers I work with have been concerned about how “engaged” their employees are in their work. I’ve long been bothered by the concept of employee engagement. Why is it a one-way street? Why is it only the employee’s engagement we measure (and everybody does…Gallup, AIAA, tons of others). I take a different view, and I believe that there is a way to improve not just your employees’ engagement, but your own.

Moment of Clarity, May 2016, The Myth of Commitment