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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

What is Happiness and Why Does this Matter?

I don't like the name calling that's happening in American politics. Name calling is like slamming the door in the face of others--it stops conversations and minimizes important issues. Instead, I believe in civil discourse and debate. I also acknowledge our primitive instincts to quickly demean and disrespect those that disagree with us or do us wrong, but caution myself and others to move above and beyond our primitive selves towards civility, respect, collaboration, development, and betterment.

This led me to think of commonality of purpose and action, and brought me back to the great words that lay the foundation for our United States democracy, words that formulate our vision to provide all with "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."

The focus on happiness caught my attention and prompted me to imagine a world based on an economy of happiness. I tweeted out a number of questions related to the attributes of happiness, happiness metrics, and happy communities. People retweeted and then tweeted related links. I decided to collect the links here as I continue to focus on this vital element of living--an element that leads to peaceful communities, quality living, and care for one another.

I'm sure I'll add more in the days to come, and I invite you to share related links, tweets, and research with me.


Walk the Walk: No Name Calling

One who I often disagree with shared demeaning words. I was tempted to name call due to my frustration and disappointment with the situation. Yet, as I watch political leaders use name calling, disrespectful soundbites, and disparaging remarks to quickly knock those that disagree with them down, I recognized the harm in that. When we name call, we avoid the needed analyses, civil discourse and debate o find the promise in the problem. As Getting to Yes reminds us "Go hard on the problem, not the people."

Instead I wrote a note to the person who made the remark. I noted how the remark made me feel and suggested a possible alternative. I looked closely at the individual recognizing so many strengths that I value and some traits that challenge me. I noted my own part in the episode--the energy I brought to the meaning, recent events, and vision.

Essentially we share so many goals, and we both regard well attributes of each others' work, yet there are areas of disconnect, areas that I can work to change in positive and proactive ways.

So, it's best to move away from name calling, disrespectful soundbites, and quick judgement, and instead seek common ground and ways to work together. That results in development rather than disparagement. So as I write, I'll commit to walk the walk with regard to no name calling, and instead seek to work with those that challenge me. Great leaders of the past have demonstrated that this is the way to move forward, a way that I respect and will strive for.

Summer Coaching and Care

Ready for preorder
Summer is a great time for educators to shore up areas of challenge and care for ourselves and loved ones in ways that matter.

I'm thinking deeply about this as I embark on the summer vacation today.

What will I do?

Many family members gathered for a Mt. Washington
hike and family get-together in Jackson, NH.
  • Focus on health and energy
  • Family reunions and celebrations
  • Supporting family members' pursuits and activities
  • House upkeep and improvement