You Have the Power!

Most if not all of us have the tendency to allow words, actions and attitudes of others to influence our responses. At some point in life, we’ve likely blamed someone else for our response to a situation or a person. To be honest, I think most of us still do. We likely do this because it is our default response. It has been part of the human experience from the beginning.

Scripture recounts the first instance of people being held accountable for their choices, and their immediate response was to blame someone else for their choices. This story of Adam and Eve disobeying God in the garden is found in Genesis 3. The tendency to blame others for our choices is still very much a part of the human condition.

Ditch the Balancing Act!

Is work-life balance possible? If so, how does one go about achieving it?

For many years we have been hearing about the importance of work-life balance. Perhaps like many of you, for years I have tried to strike the balance and have not been able to do it.

Trying to manage your time in order to attend to all the different areas of life has been a lifelong battle for most of us. Many of us work too much and as result neglect the other areas of our lives, such as family, health, church, and/or friends. On the other hand, some of us give too much focus to our family, church or physical well-being and give the bare minimum at work.

How can we ease the guilt and frustration of trying but being unable to find that elusive work-life balance formula?

Deposits and Withdrawals: Two Essentials of Healthy Relationships

In leadership, your most important asset is the people you lead. The worth of this asset increases or decreases based on how you treat those people.

In the relationship between leader and follower the banking principle of deposit and withdrawal is always at work. When something positive is said or given to someone under your leadership, a deposit is made. When something difficult has to be said, such as talking to someone about poor job performance or consistent tardiness, a withdrawal is made. The principle is true in all healthy relationships. Things can go very wrong if the withdrawal turns out to be larger than the deposits.

For the worth of those relationships to continue to increase intentional deposits are essential.

Here are some ways you can intentionally make deposits in the relationships of those you lead.

Mindfulness

We are living in a fast-paced world where it feels like we are constantly trying to catch up. This kind of living has brought much stress, frustration and discouragement. It is as if we are living on remote control. We are so busy trying to catch up that we seem to have no sense of the present.

Perhaps you have had this experience: You did something – and for a moment you have no recollection of consciously doing it. For example, have you driven from point A to point B, but then were a bit surprised to find you had actually arrived? Or maybe you took out the trash, but a bit later you go to take out the trash again, only to realize you’ve already done so!

Is there a way to regain control of our lives from the ultra-busy vortex we have been sucked into? Is there a way to live intentionally? How do we learn, or re-learn, to be present in the moment? How do we develop what some have termed mindfulness.

Winning Versus Remaining Faithful 

The desire to win is natural to humans; we can see this trait from the early stages of childhood.

Toddlers fight because they need to win, although they do not know that is what they are doing. We become adults and continue to fight to win, but we tend to be subtler about it now that we can rationalize why we need to win.

Whether vying for a toy, a position, a desired outcome, or just being right, we want to come out on top; we want to win.

Emotional Self-Care

Emotions are a fundamental part of being human. Anger. Jealousy. Joy. Sadness. Grief. Contentment. Love. All of these emotions help you respond and interact with life and living. They impact how you think and behave.

To understand and appreciate the importance of emotional self-care you need to think about what life is like when you neglect your emotional health.

Emotional self-neglect will often result in you being held captive by your emotions.

Essentials of a Healthy Team, Part 3

Two weeks ago, we started a journey of looking at three essentials of a heathy team. The first two were respect and honesty. Today we look at the final principle: humility.

Ego-driven anything does not work well or last long. When egos within a team are competing for power and recognition, the team is unhealthy and unable to accomplish much. Such a team is comprised of persons looking out for their own interests.

Essentials of a Healthy Team, Part 2

Last week I looked at respect as the first of what I refer to as the three essentials of a healthy team. Today I want us to look at the second of those three essentials — honesty.

Let’s face it; honesty in the workplace is hard, even in the context of a Christian organization. People are not sure who to trust. They are not sure if they can speak their minds without the fear of their boss making them pay for their honesty.

Plus, their opinions and ideas may snake through the office in the form of gossip or a series of conversations with other team members. The result is usually underlying internal frustration in the organization.

Essentials of a Healthy Team

What makes a healthy team work? We have no lack of talk and training on this topic. Multiple assessments are available to help discover what each person brings to the team so the right fit can be made. And yet teams still struggle to function in a healthy manner.

Some focus on changes in their work environment in the hope that they will help make a healthy team. Yet with all the training, assessing, and changes to the work environment, too many teams still function in an unhealthy manner. Too often, people are forced to take assessments and training that is meant to make them better team members. And still the team remains dysfunctional.

I will contend that there are three essential, foundational principles necessary for creating a healthy team whether at home, at work or the place where you volunteer your time. For those attempting to create healthy teams, these principles are simply irreplaceable.

Who’s Afraid of Mistakes?

“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.” – Albert Einstein

“It’s not uncommon to be afraid of making mistakes. We all make mistakes and sometimes the consequences are very unpleasant. That’s why we tend to avoid doing things that can make us fail.SelfGrowth.com

Most of us fear making mistakes. And when we do make a mistake we often try to rationalize it. In reality, mistakes are a part of life. Therefore, we should not live our lives in fear of making mistakes; rather we should learn from them or we run the risk of repeating them. I know this is not easy. Society often encourages us to be flawless, if only in appearance. However, we will make mistakes and hopefully we can learn from them.