Dialogue is an exchange

“Dialogue is an exchange in which people think together and discover something new.”

—George Kohlrieser, American Clinical Psychologist

Image of people conversing at a table

Image from Unsplash by Kevin Curtis

Perhaps no single skill is more important to professional and personal growth than to be a masterful communicator.

In the classic book How to Win Friends and Influence People, Dale Carnegie suggests the following:

  1. Demonstrate genuine interest in others and their ideas
  2. Be a good listener and encourage others to talk about themselves
  3. Show respect for others opinions and beliefs
  4. Avoid arguments, criticism, and judgment

EXERCISE:

They say two heads are better than one. What can you do to enhance your skills of dialogue to think far better with others and discover many new things through such interactions?

Consider picking up Carnegie’s book to learn more from this pioneer in the field of personal development.

Friday Review Relationships

FRIDAY REVIEW: RELATIONSHIPS

How do you see yourself in relationship to others? Here are a few relationship-related posts you may have missed. Click the link to read the full message.

 

“To the world, you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world.”

 

 

“Examine the contents, not the bottle.”

 

 

 

 

 

“You can rest assured that if you devote your time and attention to the highest advantage of others, the universe will support you.”

 

 

 

Grudges get heavier the longer they are carried

“Grudges get heavier the longer they are carried.”

—P.K. Thomajan, 20th Century Essayist

Image of a man carrying a heavy sack

Image from Unsplash by Brooke Lark

I find it particularly interesting that many people do not always experience the holiday season with the joy and happiness the media would suggest.

With the season now in our rear-view mirror, I’ve observed many of my professional colleagues, friends, and clients share some not so happy tales of gatherings that went badly, due to the less than warm feelings carried into these occasions.

Perhaps not so surprising is the fact that many people avoid these gatherings altogether, and have done so for many years, due to the heaviness of the grudges they carry.

EXERCISE:

With whom are you carrying a heavy and burdensome grudge, personally or professionally?

What strategies and approaches can you use to lighten your load and improve these relationships?

Consider picking up a copy of Fierce Conversations by Susan Scott, for some strategies to consider.

Life becomes easier

“Life becomes easier when you learn to accept an apology you never got.”

—Robert Brault, American Freelance Writer

meme of "I'm Sorry"

We all recognize that life can be difficult at times. Take a few moments and look into your past, to a time when someone wronged you, personally or professionally. Examine all the details of this event to see if it still has any grip on you, especially if you never received a proper apology.

For many people, reliving such events in their minds can be particularly upsetting and painful, even if the occurrence happened years or decades ago.

EXERCISE:

How could you make your life easier and travel lighter by developing the talent to accept apologies you never received?

The World Must Learn to Work Together

“The world must learn to work together, or finally it will not work at all.”

—Dwight D. Eisenhower, 34th President of the United States

Image of a team

Image from OD4pic

As part of my preliminary discover process, two of the questions I use to determine the potential value of a coaching relationship are:

  1. What is working and going well in your personal and professional life?
  2. What is not working or going as you wish in your personal and professional life?

Based on the answers provided, a customized coaching relationship can be used to support going from good to great, or from not good to substantially better.

Perhaps no single factor impacts these areas more than the ability to create mutually trusting relationships and work toward common objectives.

EXERCISE:

Given the state of the world and specifically your worlds, what efforts and actions can and will you take to work more effectively and successfully with others?

Behave toward everyone as if receiving a great guest

“Behave toward everyone as if receiving a great guest.”

—Confucius, Ancient Chinese teacher and philosopher

Image of Disney's Beauty & the Beast

Image from Disney Movies

I enjoy Disney movies – how about you?

My favorite over the last few years is Beauty and the Beast. A highlight of the animated and live actor versions is the “Be Our Guest” extravaganza.

Imagine how special and delightful it would be with the extraordinary level of service, attention, and delicious morsels of food offered at such an event.

EXERCISE:

How would your personal or professional world improve if you were to treat each and every one as a great guest you held with the highest regard?

Walking with Giants

“A man has dreams of walking with giants. To carve his niche in the edifice of time.”

—Mr. Banks, in Disney’s Mary Poppins

Image of Mary Poppins flying over the city

I first saw Mary Poppins in 1964. I was seven years old. It was a cold, snowy day. Mom and I took several buses into downtown Philadelphia, to stand in line for the big event.

This technicolor miracle of Disney magic had people buzzing for weeks. Beyond the special effects was a heartfelt story of exceptional characters. Today’s quote by George Banks, the family patriarch in the film, is powerful coaching for young boys and girls, as well as the older generation.

EXERCISE:

What are your dreams? What niches are you carving? What giants do you walk with? How will you leave your mark on the edifice of time?

What efforts can and will you make in the years ahead to make an even bigger impact on the edifice of time?

Peace is not made at the council table

“Peace is not made at the council table or by treaties, but in the hearts of men.”

—Herbert Hoover, 31st President of the United States

Image from Flickr by Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, University of Michigan

Image from Flickr by Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, University of Michigan

In the movie, Miss Congeniality (2000), Sandra Bullock plays an undercover FBI Agent posing as a contestant when terrorists threaten to bomb the Miss United States beauty pageant. Bullock’s character, Gracie, is the only female FBI agent who can “look the part” despite her complete lack of refinement and femininity. She prides herself in being “just one of the boys” and is horrified at the idea of becoming a girly girl.

Since the film was a comedy, the audience wasn’t alarmed. We all happily watched all the interplay of contestants and other characters. In one scene, the contestants were asked about their personal goals and aspirations. Almost every contestant mentioned world peace at some point in their response.

In today’s dynamic and often violent world, we sure could use more people working on world peace in their personal and professional lives. If all of us did our part, we would never need a council table or treaty, which as President Hoover points out, rarely works.

EXERCISE:

What heartfelt attitudes and actions can you share in your communities to bring about greater peace on earth?

before borrowing money from a friend

“Before borrowing money from a friend, decide which you need most.”

-A Farmers Almanac Philosofact

Image of hands trading money

image from The Storage Facilitator

If you are a fan of Shakespeare, consider the advice Polonius provides to his son Laertes in Act I, Scene III of Hamlet:

Neither a borrower nor a lender be, for loan oft loses both itself and friend.

What has been your experience with such matters? Where did things work out just fine, and where did things go wrong?

How do these sayings influence your point of view and perspective on being generous and helping others in need?

EXERCISE:

Consider responding to this post with your thoughts or perhaps discuss your view on this subject with a friend.

You see but you do not observe The distinction is clear

“You see, but you do not observe. The distinction is clear.”

⏤Sherlock Holmes, A Scandal in Bohemia

Image of Sherlock Holmes and Mr. Watson

image from BBC

Do you enjoy a good mystery? You know, tales of intrigue with twists and turns, and a wise individual who uses the power of perception and deduction to discern who done it from all sorts of information?

Most of us fall a bit short of identifying all the clues we need to solve the mysteries of life.

Take, for instance, the mysteries of our most significant relationships with a spouse or life partner. On may occasions we really do seem to be from different planets!

EXERCISE:

How can you expand your capacity to observe your world like Sherlock Holmes, to see the people and events around you far more clearly?