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.
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.
From Volume 9, Issue 5:You won’t find the verb “to luck” and the associated gerund “lucking” in the dictionary. Why? It’s my word, that’s why. Lucking means creating your own luck, and we’re all doing it all the time. The question is, what kind of luck are we creating, and if it’s not the kind we want, can we change it?
From Volume 9, Issue 5:“When you come to a fork in the road, take it.” —Yogi Berra
Sometimes I see new things I want to try…tennis…bridge…fishing…sailing. Other times I yearn to just stay in my comfort zone…play the piano…eat at restaurants “where everybody knows your name”…visit the same towns on vacations. And often, I remember things I used to do that gave me pleasure…playing guitar…songwriting…dead reckoning rally navigation (I’ll explain this last one in due time). These are activities and places that used to be in my comfort zone, and they might represent a third tine on that fork between what’s comfortable and what will help us grow.
From Volume 9, Issue 4:Margins are buffers. They protect us against things we don’t want. We put them at the edge of our writing so words don’t run off the page. We use them to secure investments with a broker. We win by a margin. The difference between what a merchant buys something for and what he sells it for is a margin. Margins are useful and valuable to maintain. So, what about margins in your day-to-day life?
From Volume 9, Issue 4:“Would it help?” ~ Rudolf Ivanovitch Abels in “Bridge of Spies” when asked “don’t you ever worry?”
When I get angry… really angry because of some unmet expectation (yes, I fall off the wagon, too!), my reaction is frequently anger about my anger. I want to be a more present individual. I know anger is not a productive response to anything. So when I catch myself feeling anger, what happens? I get angry with my anger! What’s with this, and what can I do about it?
From Volume 9, Issue 3:You know the guy. He flies by a line of cars crawling to an exit ramp on the Interstate and dives into a slot 40 cars ahead of you. Or it’s that woman who stands proudly in the “12 items or less” aisle at the grocery store with what looks like enough food for the 3rd Battalion. Obnoxious. Period. You can get furious and let it ruin your day or you can take another approach that involves taking a look at yourself.
From Volume 9, Issue 3:For 40 years, I have skated under the radar of jury duty. But recently I was summoned to a serve at a criminal trial—two defendants were charged with a conspiracy to possess narcotics for distribution. I was one of 40 in the jury pool. Last time I was summoned, I was excused as soon as an attorney discovered I had a master’s degree in psychology. I thought the same thing would happen here. Not so. I survived to be named juror #6 of 14 (there were two alternates). Here’s what happened and why I’d happily do jury duty again.
From Volume 9, Issue 2:My mentor, Jut Meininger, spent the last three years of his life attempting to get me to see the futility of having expectations. “Give up your expectations,” Jut would tell me from his Knower/Judger, “and you will completely eliminate frustration.” (I’ve been known to be very frustrated on and off during my life…many of you may have witnessed this!) My response from my K/J was, “How does someone with the goal-oriented K/J set of rules actually accomplish anything? Don’t we have to have expectations in order to succeed?” Jut’s been gone six years now, and his wisdom is finally sinking in.
From Volume 9, Issue 2:Fight, flight, or freeze. Some thugs pursued a friend and me on South Street in Morristown, NJ, in my early teenage years. We picked flight and dove into a store owned by a friend of my uncle. Adrenaline flowed. Blood pressure went up. Fear is an incredible motivator! But how do we use these three reactions in everyday life to benefit us?