Two preachers were making the journey back from a long but local mission. The two approached the large river they must cross in order to get back to their village. As the arrived at the river bank and gathered their make-shift barge made from scrap lumber and twine, the first preacher couldn’t help but notice a very attractive and very unclothed woman bathing in the river.
He tried not to notice but couldn’t stop his eyes from cutting over to catch a glance. Each time he would get a more angry. Who does that woman think she is? Does she not know we are men of God. Is she trying to go to hell?
Suddenly the woman jumped out of the water, grabbed her clothes and ran over to the preachers. “Can I get a ride across the river? I really don’t feel like making the swim?”
Before the first preacher could turn this hell bound flusie down the second preacher chimed in, “Sure thing. We’d be be happy to. The old barge isn’t much, but she hasn’t sank yet.” He helped her on the small raft to the disapproval of the first preacher and off they went.
They reached the other side and the second preacher helped her down and she thanked them and said goodbye. The second preacher said goodbye but the first preacher only offed a scorned look, mostly at his own wore out shoes.
The two preachers walked a good little way in silence, maybe two or three miles. Finally the first preacher opened up, “You know. I’ve known you for years. I can’t believe you picked up that Jezebel of a woman. She was NAKED for heaven’s sake. What kind of woman does that? I bet she was trying to seduce us. What kind of preacher are you anyway? Is this how you act away from the church? What if someone would have seen us with her?”
The second preacher just gave a little nonchalant smirk and continued walking a few steps then put his hand on the first preacher’s shoulder and said, “You may be right, but I dropped the woman off at the river bank. You’ve been carrying her around for the last three miles.”
Accusatory tone – indicating or suggesting that one believes a person has done something wrong
- Mrs. Jones called and you still haven’t called her
- This is the second time this has been turned in to you
- We are doing our part
- Can you make a little time in your busy schedule to take care of this?
- He won’t answer the phone
- That department always screws it up for everyone
- I looked and you still haven’t done it.
This nasty undertone causes so much strife and tension in the work place. Work is hard enough without someone insinuating you aren’t doing your part. These accusations cause you to go on the defense defending yourself on everything until you get fed up and go on the offensive which causes a turf war.
Be better than that. Lose the accusatory tone. Don’t jump to the conclusion that someone has done something wrong. Your subconscious will leak that undertone into your words. Simply follow the evidence on it’s face value and ask questions. You may even keep your big fat foot from going in your big fat mouth.
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Would’t be so surprising to see the winner of a national championship with his head down walking to the locker room, kicking the confetti, shoulders slumped while dragging his feet as reporters chased him down for a post game interview? They shove the mic in his face and ask, “What’s going through your mind?” Wouldn’t it be a little off-putting if he apologized for winning?
We all know how ridiculous that sounds to happen in sports, but we do it everyday in the game of life.
When we experience any small amount of success in life, and someone recognizes it we go way beyond acting humble. We apologize for it. It’s like we feel guilty for winning and make excuses for why we are doing well.
- Wow. You are making a killing. —- No you probably make more than I do and insurance and taxes are killing me
- You can’t hide money. —— I’m so lucky that big sale came through or I’d be on the street.
- You look skinny. —– Well I don’t feel skinny. I lost a few but I can’t keep it off for long.
- Nice house/car/dress/tie/watch. —— I got a really good deal on it.
Success is not shameful. You probably worked really hard to get there. Don’t down play it. Success just like failure is part of life. Enjoy both the ups and the downs with a humble heart, not one that’s ashamed. You were made in the image of God. Act like it.
Everyone has the same amount of time in a day. 24 hours. That’s it. Here is a list of some of the most common culprits:
Busy work – Many times we try to trick ourselves into thinking we are working with paperwork, organizing, or returning emails. We have to know the difference between major and minor priorities.
Smart Phones – This includes online videos, email, texts, dating websites, blogs (I know I know), and all aspects off social media.
Television – The average American watches between 4 -7 hours of tv a day. That is ridiculous.
People who just want to hang out – Spending time with people is actually good for you. It meets social needs, brings happiness, and a sense of well being. Just not when you have things to get done. There is a time and place for spending time with people for the sake of spending time together. Just not during your productive times when you are trying to get something done.
Set boundaries with your time and let nothing interrupt you.
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Rhino’s have one of the toughest hides on earth today. The hide protects them from the outside elements and attacks from enemies.
We too can develop this rhino type hide. We can be protected from criticism, disappointment, pain, rejection, and ego. We do that through enthusiasm. Enthusiasm gives us energy and forces negativity to roll off our back like water off a duck.
Enthusiasm is kind of like a smile. If you force a smile eventually your brain will trick itself into being happy. Enthusiasm works the same way. You fake it until you make it.
Pain however is always felt but it doesn’t wound you. The best method to handle pain is to say aloud, “Ouch…. Next”. Acknowledging it and moving on the best way to build up your hide without harboring deep unresolved pain. Rhino hide makes pain hurt less and we do that through enthusiasm.
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We are all wearing an invisible sign that says, “Look at me. I’m important.”
I know of many people who are in such need of validation they are walking up to everyone to tell them how important they are.
Guess what? No one really cares. When you talk about yourself you leave the other person feeling inferior. If you want them to validate you and feel good about themselves talk about them. Be less interesting and more interested. You will walk away and they will think to themselves, “That person makes me feel good about myself.”
Conversations about standards not being met can be difficult. The best way to find common ground is to focus on the good intent of the person you are talking to. Let that be the thematic goal of the conversation.
Assume the other person has noble intentions focus your conversations and purpose toward that cause.
I know your ultimate goal is to satisfy all of our customers in the most ethical and economical way possible. So there are a couple things I’ve seen that concern me that may have gone unnoticed. I hope we can realign them with that original intent.
As soon as you assume the other person doesn’t mean well, the conversation goes down hill rapidly. Intent Centered Communication :
- stops finger pointing and defensiveness
- refocuses of what is important and not petty
- lowers resentment and backbiting
- puts it all out on the table
- assumes the other person is noble and not selfish
- reduces silos
In difficult situations state what you believe to be their noble intent at the beginning and don’t just jump to a conclusion that they are incompetent, lazy, or selfish.
Only the spiritually and emotionally immature person picks a business to go into simply because they thing they can make a lot of money. Even on the bad days the vocation should feel like a vacation.
In my experience, each person who leaves to take a job only because they were told they will make more money haven’t weighed the options in full and they end up leaving that job also within a short amount of time.
They are only chasing happiness instead of creating it.
Our inner voice is designed to protect us. It always has it’s eye out for the danger that may be lurking around every corner. It has it’s eye out to keep us from any kind of harm, embarrassment, pain, or set back.
The negative thing is that no one has an inner voice that is positive. No one’s internal voice say’s:
- you’re in really good shape
- you’re good looking
- you’re smart enough to do this
- people like dealing with you
- you’re the best
That’s why those things have to be audible. You must say these things out loud to drown out the inner voice whose well intent is to protect you but actual left unchecked becomes your worst enemy. Everyone knows this but decides it’s too corny or lame to do so they stew in their own negativity (letting their inner voice protect them).
So my challenge to you is to do it for them. Tell someone how talented they are. Tell someone you believe in them. Tell someone they look good. Tell someone you like spending time with them. Go ahead. Lower the volume of their inner voice.
Your mind is like a garden. The soil, no matter how rich could not be productive without cultivation. Neither can our minds. Unless it is fertilized with new ideas it can become an unproductive wasteland, filled with only useless weeds.
You have the choice. You can chose to intelligently cultivate it or allow it to run wild consuming every piece of trash the wild blows through. Either way it will produce, weeds or pure and beneficial plants. Whatever is planted in the mind will later produce a harvest. It’s your choice.
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