Owning Your 50% ~ Transforming Conflict into Growth

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Owning Your 50% ~ Transforming Conflict into Growth

In the heat of conflict it is much easier to react than to stay grounded and open. We default to defending our position rather than taking responsibility for our part. We are always playing a role in conflict, whether it is on an overt or subtle level. Owning our 50% takes self-awareness and humility – we must surrender our position and explore how we have contributed to the situation. Recently a friend was upset that I didn’t get back to her sooner. I told her that from my point of view I didn’t feel a need to rush a response. However, from her point of view it only made sense that I would get back within a day. Instead of looking to strengthen my position […]

5 Assumptions for Non-Judgmental Living ~ A Personal Challenge

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5 Assumptions for Non-Judgmental Living ~ A Personal Challenge

“When you judge another, you do not define them, you define yourself.” ~ Dr. Wayne Dyer We hear it all the time – don’t judge others. Yet living a non-judgmental life is not easy. We are judging machines, conditioned from birth to see through the lens of limitation. Here are two specific reasons why we judge: 1. When we judge others, we judge ourselves: The essence of judgment arises from a place of judging ourselves. When we are told at a young age that it is inappropriate to be __________ (such as angry), or not to be ____________ (such as silly), on some level we make these aspects bad or wrong. We then grow up projecting this idea onto others. If we see someone being angry […]

Finding Middle Ground ~ 3 Steps to Creating Consensus & Connection

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Finding Middle Ground ~ 3 Steps to Creating Consensus & Connection

To find middle ground, we must be willing to accommodate another perspective, and leave the ground we stand on. Finding middle ground is not always easy because needs are often so diametrically opposed. And yet when we realize that people, more than anything, want to feel heard and understood, finding middle ground can become a simpler process. Here are three steps you can take to find middle ground: 1. Be Calm This is essential. Your calm state creates a sense of openness, and a feeling of safety for others to express fully without fear of judgement or reaction. 2. Acknowledge the Other’s Position People are more likely to loosen their stance if they feel heard and valued. People want to feel that their position is […]

From Victim to Leader

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From Victim to Leader

Think back to a time when you felt someone had done you wrong, a time you felt victimized in some way. Perhaps it was at work – someone was always late, or speaking to you with disrespect. Or maybe it was at home – you were the one always doing the household duties; the responsibilities were not equally shared. While it is easy to point at others and blame, it is more empowering to point within. We move from victim to leader when we own our role in any conflict. Instead of blaming the other, we look for what we can do differently to change things. Maybe you: Let someone know what your expectations are Tell someone how you feel about the way they speak […]

Whose Need is Stronger?

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Whose Need is Stronger?

What happens when two needs collide? Recently a friend was quite vulnerable in sharing a concern he had about a group we both belong to. While he shared I noticed that I began to be concerned he would leave the group. Instead of waiting for him to finish, I said in the midst of his vulnerability that I hope he doesn’t leave. He then quite rightly and calmly said, “Vince, just let me have a human moment here.” I made my need more of a priority than his. Every need differs in content and energetic make-up. When communicating it is important to sense whose need is stronger in any given moment – whose need deserves the right of way first – and to give way […]

Connect Before You Correct

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Connect Before You Correct

Connection is the Foundation for Communication. It is an art form to receive someone fully before offering an opinion that counters their own. We tend to correct without first allowing a connection to be established. It’s how we do things in this fast paced, pressured society – we jump to offering opinions and expertise, or slip into fixing mode. “Don’t walk in front of me, I may not follow. Don’t walk behind me, I may not lead. Just walk beside me, and be my friend.” ~ Albert Camus What if we walked beside someone, giving their thoughts and feelings room to breathe before offering our own? To do this we need to: slow down & listen understand that acceptance does not mean agreement  validate their […]

Free Compliments

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Free Compliments

“Sometimes the smallest things take up the most room in your heart.” ~A.A. Milne. Imagine going to work and seeing this on the wall? This flyer was in the office of a friend of mine. I thought it would be fun to share it with you, and perhaps inspire you to create your own Free Compliments flyer. Just in case you can’t see, here is what the tags say: You inspire me You are like a big hug I like to hear you laugh You are a treasure You have a gorgeous smile You are beautiful You amaze me You light up my life You look really good today You have a beautiful soul You are lovely Imagine the happy smiles you could create this […]

Just Follow Play Date

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Just Follow Play Date

One of my playshop participants recently told me a great way to have a play date. Her daughter sent her a written invitation to play in her room at a specific date and time. A sign was placed on the door asking not to be disturbed during their play date. Once in the room, she simply followed how her daughter wanted to play. If her daughter wanted to comb her hair, she happily played along. Mom practiced The Spirit of Yes And and joyfully danced with her daughter’s playful agendas. Imagine how much this meant to her daughter. Set up a play date with a loved one and simply follow. Consider it a waltz into the unknown where the thrill of adventure lies; where control […]

7 Mindsets for Collaboration ~ Building Creative and Engaging Relationships

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7 Mindsets for Collaboration ~ Building Creative and Engaging Relationships

Collaboration happens when all voices are heard, and all contributions valued, within a safe and open space of dialogue. People feel included and are encouraged to actively participate in the discussions or creative process. Collaboration gets stuck when we believe our idea is the way. We cannot accommodate another viewpoint because we are so locked in our own. Time and tradition clouds the lens from which we view things. We get so accustomed to our ways that we fail to see the bright and new. We can empower collaboration by changing our mindset. A changed mindset can alter the way we view others, our self, and a situation. It can shift our communication to more creative and inclusive language, and expand our range of awareness […]

Teach Wisdom

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Teach Wisdom

by Lee Carroll and Jan Tober. “We must teach children how to think, not what to think. Our role is not to pass on knowledge, but rather wisdom. Wisdom is knowledge applied. When we only give children knowledge, we are telling them what to think, what they are supposed to know, and what we want them to believe is true. When we give children wisdom, however, we do not tell them what to know or what is true – rather, we tell them how to get their own truth. I envision an educational system based upon developing children’s abilities and skills rather than their memories. Children are our guides; we should give them the ability to discover and create their own truths.” ~ from their […]