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Make Lucking Work for You

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?

Making the Old New Again

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.

Margins…

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?

When You’re Angry about Being Angry

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?

Dealing with Obnoxious People

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.

May I Approach, Your Honor?

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.

Expectations and Aspirations

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.

The Risk of Doing Nothing

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?

Happy 2016?

From Volume 9, Issue 1:The cultural Knower/Judger rule, at least here in the Western world, is that we continually strive to close the gap between what we have or are, and what we want or want to be. The desire to close this gap is a motivator. It’s what will help you make a higher salary or annual income this year, hit your sales goals, and get the car, house, or clothes you want. But let’s face it. The driving force of the American Dream is a certain level of dissatisfaction and, quite naturally, unhappiness—until you get what you want. My question is this: do dissatisfaction and unhappiness have to go together?

Why Giving Is Really Getting

From Volume 9, Issue 1:We all know we should be altruistic, and many of us are. But do we truly understand why? When I’m altruistic, it’s good for others. I’m helping someone in some way, giving my own money, time, or energy to another when I could be using it for myself. It’s a nice thing to do, but what do I get out of it? Well, it turns out that I’m the winner when it comes to being altruistic because there are a whole lot of benefits.