Tools For The Journey – When To Say Yes

With a special needs daughter in my life, I get a lot of practice saying no, especially when she falls into Princess mode. “No, you are able to put your own shoes on.” “No, you can carry your own coat.” “No, you’re a junior in high school and should be able to …” She is quick to ask for help when she doesn’t need it … and completely silent when she should speak up. Lately,

Tools For the Journey – When To Say No

While the cell membrane (see Monday’s post) defines the boundaries of an individual cell, it also serves as a gatekeeper that only allows certain molecules in. Boundaries in our personal lives serve a similar purpose. We can all probably remember the advertising campaign to just say no to drugs. It’s always a good idea to say no to progressively destructive or addictive substances or behaviors like drugs, alcohol, pornography, erotic novels, soap operas, super-sized double

Tools For The Journey – Boundaries

Why was the math book so sad? Because it was full of problems. Some days it feels like life is full of problems, but not all of the day’s problems are really mine to carry. That is where the concept of healthy boundaries actually brings freedom. (see Boundaries: When to Say Yes, When to Say No to Take Control of Your Life by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend) Simply stated, boundaries define what is mine

Tools For The Journey – Face The What Ifs

Worry is like a rocking chair. It will give you something to do, but won’t get you anywhere. ~ Unknown The beginning of anxiety is the end of faith. The beginning of true faith is the end of anxiety. ~ George Muller I read once that no more than ten percent of what we worry about ever happens. In the meantime, instead of making forward progress toward our goals or investing energy into relationships, we’ve

Tools For The Journey – Drain The Cesspool

The recent flooding that swept through my town and state left damaged roads, soggy homes, overturned cars, scattered debris, layers of mud, and giant pond-sized puddles. The water that remains is an ideal breeding ground for bacteria and in many places has been tainted with raw sewage. While some crews focus on stabilizing and rebuilding roadways, others are concentrating on cleaning up the mess. It’s a mess similar to something I read recently in Charles

Tools For the Journey – Habit #7 – Sharpen The Saw

The story is told of a woodsman busy cutting down trees. A visitor stopped by and watched for awhile before recommending the man sit down, rest, and sharpen his saw. But the woodsman refused to stop because all he could see was the number of trees still to be cut. As I read the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey, I found myself overwhelmed at times by all the things I should be

Tools for the Journey – Habit #6 – Synergize

How can one plus one equal more than two? It requires something called synergy. Synergy is when the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. As discussed in Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey, it’s when our self-awareness, imagination, conscience, will, motive for Win/Win, and empathic communication skills are applied to the toughest challenges we face in life. Synergy allows for creative cooperation as we become trailblazers who open up new

Tools For the Journey – Habit #5 – Seek First to Understand, Then To Be Understood

I’ll never forget the day I ordered fries at a drive-thru … and got a Sprite instead. I’m glad technology improved beyond static-filled speakers to screens to verify your order because it’s important to be understood. But, we all have a tendency to make assumptions, jump to conclusions, and rush to fix things based on what we thought we heard. When working toward Win/Win solutions, it’s important to take the time to really understand the problem

Tools For The Journey – Habit #4 – Think Win/Win

It’s fall and that means football season! Time to wear your team’s colors and root them on to victory. But when it comes to relationships, winning and competition aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. In Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey, the author describes several possible outcomes from interactions with other people. Win/Lose – I get my way and you don’t get yours. Win – Others are irrelevant because it only matters