The reason I talk to myself is

“The reason I talk to myself is because I’m the only one whose answers I accept.”

—George Carlin, Late American stand-up comedian and social critic

Image of George Carlin

Image from content.time

George Carlin, who passed away in 2008, was noted for his black comedy. No subject escaped his probing and ingenious mind. He had a surprising and penetrating way of making aspects of human nature hilarious to millions of people.

Today’s quote points out that we are constantly talking to ourselves and find our own opinions, perspective, and general views on all subjects of greatest appeal and value. Carlin knew that our favorite subject was ourselves. He was clever enough to poke fun at it, making him one of the most popular comedians of all time.

EXERCISE:

Where and how can the understanding that each of us talks to ourselves and prefers our owns answers help you improve your relationships and the results you desire, personally or professionally?

When the heart is afire

“When the heart is afire, some sparks will fly out of the mouth.”

—Thomas Fuller, 15th Century British historian

Image from Unsplash by Jamie Street

Today’s quote is about leadership. Take a moment to consider the sparks flying out of people’s mouths these days. Gun control, global warming, nuclear proliferation, politics, and the economy are just a few of the hotly debated subjects.

What topics have your heart afire? To what degree do you share your own thoughts and opinions on those topics with others?

EXERCISE:

Where is the status quo unacceptable in your personal or professional worlds? Where can and will you play a greater leadership role and let a few more sparks fly out of your mouth, sharing your heartfelt beliefs?

The only way some of us exercise our minds

“The only way some of us exercise our minds is by jumping to conclusions.”

—Cullen Hightower, 20th Century American writer

Image of a frog jumping to conclusions

Image from Ellen’s Little Visits

With our never-ending race to get it all done today, we have all run into a problem. Despite our brain’s magnificent power to process vast amounts of information, we are beginning to hit a barrier to open and novel thinking.

We have learned a trick in which our established mental models create shortcuts to our processing power. We skip the often useful objective and reflective capacities needed in many situations.

EXERCISE:

Where have you recently jumped to an incorrect conclusion? Where and with whom might a slower, more thoughtful and open-minded approach prove most useful, in your professional or personal life?

how you interpret the world

“Be careful how you interpret the world: it is like that.”

—Erich Heller, 20th Century British Essayist

image of flowers through a magnifying glass

image from Flickr by marco magrini

We humans are interpretation and opinion machines. As we navigate our worlds, we continually assess our environments and relationships through special filters we have created. Our perceptions really do create our reality and our experience of the world.

As talk show host Dr. Phil often says, “How’s that workin’ for you?”

What is your level of fulfillment, satisfaction, and general happiness with things as you see and interpret them?

EXERCISE:

Make an effort to expand your filter choices as you view your world today. Consider trying on a more hopeful, optimistic, open, forgiving, or creative perspective and see what happens.

A Second Chance

“Your first impression remains—but you can revise your opinion. Look once again and give someone a second chance!”

—Laurent F. Carrel, Messages from Melanie

Do Over image

Image from blue-route.org

Most of us are familiar with the adage, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” Unfortunately, people come to rapid decisions based on their initial perceptions, which happens in mere seconds.

Today’s quote suggests that we all have the power to offer anyone a “do over,” the opportunity to shift our view of them to something far more positive and favorable.

EXERCISE:

Where would there be great value in offering others a second chance, personally or professionally?

Where could you ask those who do not perceive you as you desire for a “do over” as well?