50: Transformational Relationships May22

50: Transformational Relationships...

https://media.blubrry.com/gcoyl/p/medeor.co/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/50-Transformational-Relationships.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 41:48 — 38.3MB)Jeannette Slated is back to chat with Dr. Deb about relationships that are life-giving and help us grow. Dedicated to helping people grow and develop, Jeannette Slater has been involved in professional life coaching for over 20 years. Dr. Deb is a communication professor at several colleges and universities. Resources mentioned in this episode: Examining Relationships article I Quit article including The Dip by Seth Godin Trapped article discussing the Johari Window Peter Rollins website: https://peterrollins.com The Liturgists website: http://www.theliturgists.com Rob Bell’s website: https://robbell.com Greg Boyd’s website: http://reknew.org  ...

Top 10-#5 Communication is important...

You are a communicator. You are different than the rest of life on earth. The plants live by cause and effect. If you put a seed in the ground and it receives nutrients from the soil, warmth from the sun and moisture from the sky, it will do what is in its DNA. Plants are involved in a give-and-take cycle that is about exchanging energy. Animals seem to live by instinct. They know what to do and spend their whole lives doing it: eating, pooping, sleeping (they’re really good at that one), reproducing, etc. This morning the dove eggs in a nest outside my kitchen window are being protected by mama (or papa) dove as it snows. People are different; we’re much more complex than things that live by instinct or cause and effect. We have the ability to reason, can emote, possess freewill, are creative, and communicate. I think we can do all these things because we’re made in God’s image. Communication has been around a long time; it’s right from the beginning of the bible. Genesis 1:1 says, “In the beginning God.” The word for God is actually Gods; it is plural. It presumes that God has always existed. If God consists of multiple persons that have existed forever, one has to assume they have communicated forever. You cannot have relationship without communication. God used communication to make the world; They spoke the world into existence. Jesus was called the Word. Jesus told stories and asked questions more than anything else. He was a master communicator. Good, healthy, effective, loving communication is essential for healthy relationships. When we withhold affection, say harmful words, withdraw, or even focus on what we want to say next, we are being selfish and unkind; we are...

Top 10-#4 Think Flexible...

In 1956, actress Doris Day recorded the hit song, “Que Será Será.” It was introduced in the Hitchcock film, The Man Who Knew Too Much and later used as the theme of The Doris Day [TV] Show. “Whatever will be will be” is what the words mean. Related popular expression are, “it was meant to be,” and “everything happens for a reason,” (as if someone or something is driving the universe). These expressions reflect a worldview that is fatalistic and predetermined. The problem is, the world doesn’t work like that. I believe there is someone bigger than me, a being referred to as God. I’m not a Deist who believes that God created the world and then left it. Neither am I a determinist who thinks God causes everything. (If that is so, you must conclude that God is a monster, a topic I will address in a later post.) The world is not on some pre-determined course. There are too many variables. There are too many possibilities. There is human free will. Animists believe spirits inhabit everything (trees, the ground, everything) and humans are mostly powerless to fight them; people live in fear. Muslims say, “nsha’Allah,” which means, “God willing.” Behind this saying is a belief that nothing happens outside of God’s will. These ideas have invaded Christianity as far back as Augustine in the 4th and 5th centuries. However, life shows us that things can change. In the bible, there is great evidence that God changes his mind. I have free will, so I can choose my path—and change my mind. If I see the world as fixed, then I am either in the right or in the wrong. I am either on the merry-go-round or I am off. I’m either in...

Top 10-#3 Try New Things...

We have an English expression that one can be “stuck in a rut”. A rut in the ground is created when repeated activity takes place in the same location. If you walk or drive in the same place every day, you will create ruts or crevices in the ground. Over time, these can become huge. Our brains are no different. When you do things over and over and only occasionally deviate from sameness, your brain actually creates ruts. So the expression, “I’m in a rut,” is very literal. Scientists used to believe that the brain has little ability to change past childhood. But research since the 1960s shows the brain is like plastic; it has the ability to change as a result of new experiences. It can even rewire itself after suffering damage. I saw a documentary about a 95-year-old Japanese man who was still directing a preschool for special needs children. He had learned the Korean language in his 80s and was learning Chinese in his 90s so he could travel to China to share his expertise on children. This man refused to retire into a rocking chair; he continued to live by pushing himself and learning new things. I think he might have a key to staying young. I once took a creative communication class. We were encouraged to alter our daily routines in order to spark creativity: take a different route home or brush your teeth with your other hand. If you’re a follower of this blog, you know I often quote the famous American basketball coach John Wooden. He said, “Five years from now, you’re the same person except for the people you’ve met and the books you’ve read.” So do something different today. Expose yourself to new ideas and experiences....

Top 10-#2 Ask Questions!...

If you’ve ever been around toddlers, you know they have a favorite word. “Why?” Little kids are naturally inquisitive. But something happens when we grow up. We are compelled to conform; it’s one of the strongest pressures in the world. We live in a world driven by social norms, and sometimes those norms are less than helpful. We are told what to think. We start to accept the way things are. We stop exploring. As I travel the world, I see that some cultures resist change, critical thinking and question-asking. In fact, asking questions is sometimes seen as rebellious or obnoxious; sometimes it’s even punished. Perhaps you grew up in a family that was always pushing your mental boundaries. Or perhaps you didn’t. I think some of us need to be given permission to ask questions. Has it been awhile since you had an original or creative thought? Is your mind full of cobwebs? I am privileged to have a life-long friend who taught me critical thinking skills. He’s an engineer, so he questions everything. He gave me permission, and it altered my life. Asking questions is good, healthy and reasonable. And contrary to popular belief, God likes it. Jesus asked a lot of questions! I used to think that life was all about the end, about finding truth and holding on to it. But then I realized life is about the journey, always learning and growing.  Life isn’t easy. We have to struggle and wrestle to find solutions for life’s challenges. I think it’s how we were designed. So here is permission. ASK QUESTIONS! Think creative thoughts. Escape whatever boxes you have built in your mind or have been imposed on you. Allow yourself the freedom to resist the status quo and rediscover inquisitiveness....

Top 10-#1 Laugh!

A few years ago I gave a talk in Argentina listing 10 of the most important lessons I’ve learned in life. I will be blogging on these lessons every day for 10 consecutive days. I hope they will inspire you and motivate you to come up with your top 10! #1 Laugh a lot It’s so easy for us to be overly serious. We stress. We’re tired. We are overwhelmed. We feel guilty about the stuff we did and the stuff we didn’t do. We need to lighten up. The cliché is true that laughter is good medicine. Research proves it. Paul E. McGhee spent 22 years researching the health benefits of humor; he concluded: “Your sense of humor is one of the most powerful tools you have to make certain that your daily mood and emotional state support good health.” He thinks laughter is so important, he calls it “the laughter remedy!” In his book, Health, Healing, and the Amuse System: Humor as Survival Training, Dr. McGhee promotes an 8-step program: Determine the nature of your own sense of humor Become less serious and cultivate a more playful attitude in life (this is the basic foundation for your sense of humor) Develop a more hearty and healthy belly laugh Improve your joke-telling skills Create your own spontaneous verbal humor Find humor in everyday life Laugh at yourself, and Start applying these skills to cope with stress. So chill out, lighten up and...

I Don’t Know What I Want To Be When I Grow Up! May05

I Don’t Know What I Want To Be When I Grow Up!

Perhaps you think you’re the only one who says, “I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.” Actually, it’s more common than you think. I even heard the phrase from two 50-somethings this week. If you are asking deep questions about who you are, what you’re good at, or what you REALLY want to do, you’re not alone. We all desire to know who we are and what work will be fun and fulfilling. Some people don’t know because they’ve focused on others, like their kids. Some have let life push them instead of them pushing life. Some have spent all their energy working for a paycheck, or have perhaps never given themselves permission to ask, “What would I really like to do?” How about you? Get Control Of Your Life is not about giving you formulas or steps. There are enough websites, book authors and motivational speakers already out there with 5 or 10 simple steps to success. I think life is more complex, so here you will find no magic bullets for life, secret recipes for success, or easy plans. We all get to figure stuff out for ourselves. However, there is help. Here are some principles that have served me: Look for patterns Know thyself Inform thyself Motivate thyself Connect thyself Submit thyself Look for patterns Think about what you’ve enjoyed doing throughout your life. What were the projects or initiatives that were really fun, fulfilling, made you feel good about yourself, and gave you the sense that you made a difference? Take some time alone to reflect on this question. Go for a walk. Get quiet. Get out some paper and make a list. You may be surprised at what you unveil. When I look back on my life, I see patterns. I love communication. I enjoy making videos for non-profits. I like to write. I love to influence people. I adore teaching, and I realized that everything I do has a teaching motivation, whether it’s speaking, writing, or producing. I’m a news junkie, and I love to tell stories. I love the challenge of trying to represent God accurately and without all the religious baggage. It was only as I began to create Get Control Of Your Life that I remembered some things I did as a child. Wow, I found patterns! As a little blond-headed girl of maybe 8 or 9, I decided to publish a newspaper. (See me in the cover photo of this post.) I apparently wrote some articles and glued the tiny comic from bubble gum or Cracker Jack (caramel coated popcorn and peanuts with a “prize”) for the comic section of my “paper.” I then posted the paper on the light pole in front of our house. Years later, as an adult, I was the copy editor on a hospital ship called The Anastasis. With a typewriter (we’re talking 1982-83) and a lousy photocopier, I “published” The Daily Plan-It, a takeoff on The Daily Planet where Clark Kent (Superman) and Lois Lane worked. It was great fun, and I loved informing my shipmates of key announcements and putting a smile on their faces with little anecdotes and jokes. Another thing I did as a kid was pretend to be a news anchor, and one night I performed the news in front of my parents and grandparents. I must have been quite young because it was that night I learned what a weather forecast is! As a graduate student in the late 1980s, I worked on a weekly newscast on The Family Channel and got to be a real news anchor. In the 1990s I worked for two news stations in Dallas. Now I’m a bona fide blogger and soon-to-be podcaster. I’m writing, telling stories, connecting others to resources, and sharing ideas What patterns and connections do you see in your life? Know thyself Take some...

Pleasantville

It seemed everything was perfect. Kids were happy, fathers got a fully cooked dinner after a long day at work, the streets were clean, and there was no crime anywhere to be found. It was the idealized American 1950s. It’s all the residents of the small town knew. But life turned messy when two teenagers from the next century invaded their perfect space. You see, the place was a fictionalized town inside a fictionalized movie called Pleasantville released 1998. The film starred Tobey Maguire, Reese Witherspoon, William H. Macy, Jeff Daniels and Don Knotts. The film began in the 1990s. Tobey’s character David longed for the simplicity of the 1950s. The victim of his parents’ failed marriage, a stressed-out mother, and an absent father, David escaped his painful reality by watching old re-runs of a 1950s TV show, Pleasantville. And Reece’s character, Jennifer, was obsessed with being popular at school and sleeping with every high school boy she could seduce. Her value was based on being liked by others. One day, while fighting over the television remote, David and Jennifer were magically transported into the 1950s world of Pleasantville, only to find the town residents living in black-and-white, just like the TV show. What they found were isolated, ignorant and shallow residents. While everything seemed wonderful on the surface, the reality was that the townsfolk knew of nothing outside their tiny world, and were ignorant to the beauty of art, the mind-expanding knowledge of books and the intimacy of deep relationships. David and Jennifer could not help being who they were (themselves from the 1990s). As they interacted with Pleasantville’s residents, things began to change. As folks experienced beauty, choice, knowledge and passion, they began to change from 2-dimensional characters in black and white to 3-dimensional characters...

Living With Purpose

“Finding a direction for life, and setting overarching goals for what you want to achieve can help you actually live longer,” says psychology researcher, Patrick Hill of Carleton University. Hill and his colleague Nicholas Turiano recently published “Purpose in Life as a Predictor of Mortality Across Adulthood,” in the journal, Psychological Science, adding to a list of studies that show the importance of living life with purpose. Many studies have shown the physical benefits of psychological wellbeing. And several have even studied attitudes about life purpose. But Hill and Turiano (of the University of Rochester Medical Center) decided to see  if the benefits of purpose vary over time and help people deal with life transitions. They looked at data from the Midlife in the United States (MIDUS) study, funded by the National Institute on Aging. They examined responses about purpose from over 6,000 participants over a 14-year period. They found those who had reported a greater sense of purpose outlived their peers. In fact, they had a 15% lower risk of death compared to their more aimless counterparts Purpose turned out to be a greater predictor of long life than other factors including gender and emotional wellbeing. We know there are many influences on our health and aging. It is not simply the fate of our DNA that determines our happiness, success and longevity. Living a life of purpose is a uniquely human endeavor. There seems to be a drive deep inside everyone to live for something greater than themselves. Some live for their children. Some live to change the world. It doesn’t seem to matter how lofty the purpose. But having a purpose is essential for living life as you were designed. It is no coincidence that Rick Warren’s book, The Purpose Driven Life:...

Examining Relationships...

With whom do I have the closest relationships? What connections are those relationships based on? How can I re-evaluate the depth of particular relationships to know where to put my energies? These are some of the questions I asked myself while sitting in on a course called, Your CrossRoads. Working with a non-profit for much of my career, I had considered literally hundreds of people to be friends. A belief is that the mission is held together by relationships and shared ethos. Consequently, I had almost no mental map to differentiate various relationships. However, when I left the group, it became more obvious who were my friends and who were relationships of convenience. True friends follow you in life; friendships of convenience or circumstance fade away. Now a couple of years out, I find myself thinking about my relationships and considering the differences between friends, acquaintances and colleagues. There are differences. In her CrossRoads course, creator Victoria Jeffs challenges participants to identify the foundations important to healthy relationships. The model helped me identify how I relate to various people in my life. The foundational pillars are touch points we have in common with others. Upon examination, I found that my closest friendships are with those people I share several touch points. They are: Intellect Emotion Social Spiritual Financial Physical Cultural Some people are in our lives due to circumstances. These include family members, work colleagues, and others we know through various groups in which we participate. The close relationships in our lives are those we have invited in. Like me, you can use the seven pillars to examine your closest relationships. This simple exercise can help you identify what aspects of those relationships are healthy and also what are unhealthy. Healthy relationships are life-giving....

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