Kindness Anyone?

Halloween is near and along with the costumes, parties, and pumpkin carving comes the tradition of "Trick or Treating."  As children go door to door singing the verse, they usually get a "treat"  as no-one likes to be "tricked."

As we reflect on this custom, it is really about our options in life to be kind or to be crude. In our daily roles, do we make it a habit to be generous to one another or do we focus our energies on being mean?

Think about the office gossip, the negative comments said about co-workers, the blaming of others when things go wrong, and complaints about "the boss."  Now think about what is happening in our schools. Everyday approximately 160,000 students skip school because they are afraid. They fear rejection, being safe and being bullied.

Schools across the nation have started to adopt the Rachel Challenge. Named after Rachel Joy Scott, the first person killed in the Columbine HS tragedy in 1999, it is a program about teaching children on how to be kind.  Immediately after the tragedy, Darrell, her father began to speak and used writings and drawings from Rachel's diaries to illustrate the need for a kinder, more compassionate nation. (http://www.rachelschallenge.org/educators). 

In our daily interactions with others what do we focus on? Do we concentrate on the good or do we set our sights on the bad or what makes them different?

This week at a training program, I met the nicest waitress. By her age I could tell she has been in this industry a long time, serving as a banquet host. You could tell she loved her job and loved helping people. After the program I thanked her profusely and let her know that she was one of the kindest persons I have met at a hotel and was thankful for her service. She got tears in her eyes, gave me a hug and said, "You have made my day! Thank you! Thank you!"

My challenge to you today is to make it a habit of being kind, to those you know well and those you don't. In the words of one very smart girl who is no longer on this earth, "I have this theory that if one person can go out of their way to show compassion, then it will start a chain reaction of the same. People will never know how far a little kindness can go." Rachel Joy Scott, 1981 - 1999.

Learning to Grow

Not only do we need to grow ourselves personally, we may be in the position of cultivating our workforce as well.  As managers, nurturing and coaching our employees will enable them to  become stronger.  A true "coaching manager" takes every opportunity to develop the talents of his/her team.  The purpose of coaching is to GROW:

G --- Goal of what we are trying to achieve.

R --- Reality of where we are starting from.

O --- Options or choices that we have to move forward.

W --- What actions/activities shall we do next?

Follow the above acronym as a simple guide to workforce development and growing your human capital garden.

(To learn more about this topic check out our Coaching for Development Training.)

 

Let It Go

After Disney's blockbuster animated film Frozen won an Oscar this year, it's Oscar-winning anthem "Let It Go" sung by Idina Menzel, got plenty of airtime on the pop and adult contemporary radio stations.  Even if you didn't see the film, the song's refrain serves as an excellent mantra for our every day challenges whether they are just annoying inconveniences or Kilimanjaro-esque problems.  Our natural human behavior is to control our environment, control others, control our emotions.  The conflict arises when things happen beyond our control and manifests itself into physical and emotional stress.

Let. It. Go.  Three simple words to help us move from stress to acceptance.  Wikipedia defines acceptance as "...a person's assent to the reality of a situation, recognizing a process or condition (often a negative or uncomfortable situation) without attempting to change it, protest."  

A family member chooses to attend a work event rather than your child's birthday party.  Let it go.  Recognize that individual has different values and accept them for who they are not who you want them to be.

A co-worker receives a promotion over you.  Let it go. Recognize this other person has been chosen for the position and accept you may have talents better served in your current job or a future opportunity.

The company break room is a cross between a science experiment gone wrong and an episode of Hoarders.  Your boss directs you to clean it up before upper management visits your facility.  Let it go.  Recognize this is out of your normal job description and accept the chore as a challenge and change from your everyday work routine.

So whether your challenge is annoying or life-changing, close your eyes, take a deep breath and say out loud "let it go". Or if you are a fan of the movie Frozen, close your eyes, take a deep breath and sing in your loudest voice "let it go, let it go..."  Moving your mindset from stressed to acceptance will give you some control over the uncontrollable.  

Quote of the Month

"Some people dream of success while others wake up and work hard for it."

 

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