Categories
General Leadership

Lead by Example

Lead by example. Phillip Kane's andwin.net blog
Photo 74575302 / Don Shula © Jerry Coli | Dreamstime.com

Friday, December 2, 2022

This week, while visiting the NFL Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio as part of a team‐building exercise with some of the leaders of our company, I noticed a quote projected on a wall from the legendary coach of the Miami Dolphins, Don Shula. Shula, who coached from 1963 to 1995 (most of those years with the Dolphins) holds the distinction of being the only coach to have ever led a team to an undefeated season – going 14‐0, then winning the 1973 Super Bowl. Shula, who died just two years ago, was a hero to many of my generation, including me, not only for what he did in football, but for the way he lived his life and led other human beings. So, as I saw his words projected on the smooth, concrete wall, though I’d seen it before, I found myself reading it over, and over again:

“I don’t know any other way to lead but by example.”

What Don Shula understood intrinsically is that people follow the example of their leaders. They don’t do what they say … they do what they do. They watch them carefully. Imitating them. Wanting to be like them. Believing that if they do the things their leaders do, they can be like them someday. And because of this Don Shula understood something else – something far more important even. He understood that the sort of example he set was a choice. He knew that the only person who determines whether a leader creates a positive example or something other than that is the leader themself and no one else.

And that’s the point for the week.



See, what Don Shula knew, maybe better than any other coach of his generation, is that life is a choice. Every day of our life is a beautiful, wonderful choice between happiness and sadness, between giving our all or giving in, between bringing our whole heart or bringing something less, between doing the right thing or the wrong one, between helping a neighbor or walking right on by, … or between setting the right example or the wrong one. And this goes for all of us. Each of us is faced with a hundred chances each day to decide what sort of example we’ll set. Each one of us is a leader of something – even if it’s just our own future self. Each of us has an opportunity to choose.

And when more and more of us, then, ultimately, all of us, choose to lead, to set an example for good more often, the lives of everyone around us will improve – here at Turbo, in our homes, and in our communities. It can’t work any other way. It won’t work any other way. For every person here to achieve whatever the “more” is that they seek in their lives, every single person who works here must believe in, exhibit, and be willing to fight for a kinder, more positive example of leadership. And when we do, almost nothing will be able to stop us; because exactly none of our energy will be wasted on negativity, dissent, half‐heartedness, or indifference.

See, what Don Shula proved, beyond any doubt, is that winning, that having more of whatever matters to the people on a team, requires that no room be left anywhere for anyone except those who choose a better way. And because every single person in that organization, beginning with him, chose something better, they never lost a game.

That’s what’s available to us … if we choose a better way … if we choose to set a better example for those around us to follow.

So be like Coach Shula. Lead by example.

And Win.

Categories
Gratitude

Be Grateful

Be grateful. Phillip Kane's andwin.net blog.
Asian Community News Network

Friday, November 25, 2022 – The Thanksgiving Week

This week, at the FIFA World Cup in Qatar, the Japanese national football team delivered a stunning 2-1 upset over heavily favored Germany. But as much as this installment of The Week could be about the near absolute likelihood of achieving whatever you believe you can do, or about how more-nimble Davids can prevail over too-slow and too-confident Goliaths seven days a week and twice on Sundays as long as they stick to the more-nimble playbook, it’s about neither of those things. It’s about gratitude and respect and how one begets the other.

See, after cheering on the Samarai Blue for 90 minutes, plus a bit of extra time, the Japanese fans stayed behind to help clean the stadium … not just the part they were sitting in, but the entire stadium. For Japanese football fans, Thanksgiving isn’t a once-a-year thing – it’s a 365 day a year thing. And because they are grateful for each day and everything in it, they likewise show respect for all they encounter; like football stadiums. It is not something the Japanese have to stop and think about. There are no dots to connect. It is reflexive … a common and simple truth: One will respect that which they are grateful for.

And that’s the point for the week.



Japanese football fans do not clean stadiums out of a sense of moral obligation or duty. They do so from a place of love and mutual respect – a place that is rooted in gratitude. The former simply flows from the latter. Easily. Without great thought or effort. Without gratitude, respect is nigh on impossible. Surely, one can behave in a respectful manner toward someone or something without having any sense of gratitude in their heart. But there is a world of difference between respect and being respectful.

True, caring leaders and those who fully buy into what they are trying to accomplish know these things. That’s why they wake up each day with grateful hearts and are careful, at any point in any day, when they feel that sense of gratitude slipping away, to restart their day – seeking to re-find that almost childlike sense of gratitude, and ensuring that it connects up with a spirit of respect for everybody and everything in their life. Because they do, people are more likely to want to follow them, and will more willingly engage in difficult tasks or invest long hours on their behalf. Think about your own experience. Recall the best boss, teacher, coach, leader, or superior of any other kind that you’ve had in your life. I’m willing to go out on a limb to bet you that this person was exceedingly grateful for whatever they had in their life.

And it was that spirit of gratitude that led them to first appreciate then respect you. And since, after all, because all of us want simply, and not much more than but, to be respected, those who lead with grateful hearts will, by the sheer business of odds, be apt to reach all of those around them, forming many-stranded cords of nearly unbreakable strength which become capable of accomplishing extraordinary things that exactly no one might ever have thought them capable. 

But it all starts with one person … waking up with a grateful heart … behaving with respect for others … picking up the very first piece of trash.

So, be that person. Be thankful for all that you have in the world.

Be grateful.

And win.

Categories
Make Others Big

Make it About Others

Make it about others. Phillip Kane's andwin.net blog
Image credit: Didgeman | Pixabay

Friday, November 18, 2022

This week, CBS ran a story about Ironman athletes, father and son, Jeff and Johnny Agar. Jeff is 59. Johnny is 26. They have competed in over 200 competitions together – competitions that require a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike ride, and a 26.2 mile run. Jeff and Johnny are not your typical triathletes though. Johnny has Cerebral Palsy. So, in each race, when they swim, Jeff tugs Johnny; when they bike, Jeff tows Johnny; and when they run, Jeff pushes Johnny. The two of them together with their gear weigh over 400 pounds.

This is not something Jeff Agar does for himself. Speaking of her husband, Becky Agar said, “Even though he got him the 140 miles, he’ll always be hiding behind Johnny. He doesn’t want to be announced as an Ironman. It’s Johnny’s moment. And it’s the most beautiful thing to me.” Jeff Agar knows with 100% certainty that it’s not about him. And because of that, his son becomes really, really big. See, that’s the paradoxical truth of life and leadership: the smaller we become, the bigger those around us can get.

And that’s the point for the week.



Those who make it about others attract followers to them. Because those who follow them recognize in them a genuine care for those they lead as human beings, and a true concern for their welfare and safety. When we make it about others, their interests are placed ahead of our own, and as a result, we are made more aware of that which stands in their way of health and happiness, and we’ll move heaven and earth to fix it when these things are threatened. When we make it about others, they flourish, because nothing other than that is more important to us.

But when we make it about us, those around us cease to thrive. That’s because we suck the very life out of them. It’s exhausting and soul-crushing for others to support the nearly endless need of a narcissist to feel more important than they truly are. Those who put themselves first make others feel unsafe, less valued, and less important. They feel like disposable parts whose opinions matter for nothing and who wouldn’t be missed if they didn’t bother showing up one more day.

In organizations where it’s not about those in charge, the rest of the place looks out for one another and for their leaders. They offer up ideas to make things better and to catapult the organization forward. They bring their whole hearts to what they do because they know that it’s about them and making their lives better. And as a result, the businesses they work in move ahead with speed and force, accomplishing things that those in them only ever once dreamed were possible. All because people started making it more about others than themselves.

So, make others really, really big … by making yourself really, really small.And win.

Categories
Listening

Listen to One Another

Listen to one another. Phillip Kane's andwin.net blog
Image credit: Couleur | Pixabay

Friday, November 11,2022

This week, an election was held in this country. Despite predictions of a huge “red wave,” from state legislatures, to governorships, to the U.S. House and, ultimately, the U.S. Senate, those who were victorious were those who spent their campaigns talking about things that actually mattered most to their voters. Conversely, those who spent the past twelve months talking only about those things that mattered to them and their party – things their constituents were not truly concerned about – were punished at the ballot box. But life is like that. People will more often follow those who place the needs of others ahead of their own.

And that’s the point for the week.



The success of any enterprise, whether a country or a company, is inversely proportional to the degree to which those leading it impress their own personal self-interests upon it. That’s because when the direction of an organization is determined solely by those leading it, enthusiasm and commitment among everyone else becomes harder and harder to find. See, people want to be heard. They want a say in the direction of things they are expected to contribute to, and which impact their lives. Most importantly, they want to know that when the enterprise achieves its goals, their lives will improve.

All this begins with people who listen to one another and who take the time to understand what’s important to them. It’s no harder than asking then caring enough to listen to what comes next. It’s a simple fact that we learn things about each other when we take the time to talk about what matters to each other. Those who do so build things that others want to be a part of, believe in and fight for – because they see a place for themselves in these structures, and can imagine the better futures that they promise – all because someone cared more about what mattered to them than their own self interests.

So, take the time to understand what matters to each other.

And win. 

Categories
General Leadership

Don’t Change Definitions, Change Lives.

Don't Change Definitions, Change Lives. Phillip Kane's andwin.net blog
Image: Annie Spratt | Unsplash.com

Saturday, July 30, 2022

This week, the ruling class and media elites in this country spent most of their time arguing about the definition of long-settled words, most notably, recession. Long understood by all to mean an economic period marked by two or more continuous quarters of GDP retraction, our current administration and its water carriers began seeking immediately, after the news of Q2’s economic decline was announced, to recast the definition of the word recession so as to avoid admitting that the nation was, in point of fact, in one. Some even went as far as to deny that the long-held definition was actually the long-held definition after all. Bastion of truth and objectivity, Wikipedia changed the definition, locked the page from further editing, then, in response to visceral outrage, changed the definition of definition itself to allow for such fluidity as was occurring right before our very eyes.

The trouble with all of the variability, though, is that it was doing absolutely nothing to fix the root problem of the economic malaise gripping the country. Changing definitions is not winning. Changing definitions does nothing to help those whom one held their hand up and asked to lead.

Changing definitions is concerned solely with improving the image and legacy of those with egg on their face; it does nothing to improve the lives of those paying more for eggs.

And that’s the point for the week.



The trouble with insufferable narcissists is that they almost never take responsibility for their failures.

The other problem with them is that they care almost nothing at all for those whom they asked to lead.

It’s why they will bend themselves into a pretzel to avoid even the appearance of blame, let alone actually accepting, then taking action to correct a mistake they have caused. It’s simply not in their nature.

So, they send out their minions to deny that the truth people can see with their own two eyes is actually taking place. They instruct others to change the definitions of words. Still others they ask to recast and reframe data. “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain,” they shout, “Enjoy the wonderful world of OZ.”

But this isn’t winning. No right-thinking human being believes this is winning.

And it’s not a matter of politics … or comparison … or whataboutism. It’s a simple matter of right and wrong – about telling people the truth or telling people something else.

People who tell others the truth, no matter how difficult, attract followers. They collect around them people who would go anywhere with them and do anything for them, because they know if they tell them something it is the truth. For second only to love, the most important contract between two human beings is trust. And without it, one will never have followers, but only people that do what they are told in exchange for money. But trust binds organizations together and fuels them onward. It’s what enables them to withstand the cycles of the economy and the buffets of the competition. It’s what creates winners – the likes of which we haven’t seen around here for a while … because we keep mistaking things for leadership traits that aren’t, and hiring people to lead who can’t – people who change definitions instead of changing what’s broken.

Don’t be these people. Don’t change definitions, change what’s broken. Don’t change the narrative, change the outcome. Don’t change words, change people’s lives.

And win.

For more about the author, please follow this LINK.

To purchase Phillip Kane’s new book, The Not So Subtle Art of Caring, (John Hunt Publishing) please click HERE.

Image: Annie Spratt | Unsplash.com

Categories
Empathy

Don’t Fake Empathy

Image credit: engin akyurt | Unsplash.com

Friday, July 22, 2022

This week, I sent a tweet that some may have found a bit cynical, which suggested that the attempt by large corporations to convince their associates that a CEO who earns $20 million per year understands the well-being concerns of their average employee is, as a matter of fact, contributing to the well-being concerns of their average employee. See, no reasonable person believes that someone with an 8-digit compensation package has any ability at all to relate to the health and welfare issues of individuals making 100 times less than them. So, for anyone in the organization to suggest that they do is not helpful; in fact, it’s upsetting.

As if on cue, two days after I sent the tweet, up pops a post in my LinkedIn feed from a CEO sharing the great news that he had finally taken the advice he’d been giving to his team about self-care and had decided to embark on a 5-star retreat to one of Europe’s most exclusive destinations. It was a rather long post, complete with pictures of the posh facility and some regret on the leader’s part that he doesn’t do enough for himself. I tried to put myself in the place of one of his average workers. I tried to decide how the post would contribute to my own well-being and rather quickly decided that it likely would not, imagining that with the rising cost of everything my own vacation had likely been postponed as personal budget worries mount … creating real live health concerns at a time when people in the office are being asked to do the work of more than one associate.

And to know that the boss’s idea of empathizing with it all is to jet over to Switzerland for a spa week was likely the last straw. Because the goal of empathy is not to show people how much more important you are than their problems. It’s to show them how important their problems are to you.

And that’s the point for the week.



Trying to show people that their problems shouldn’t matter to them by proving they are trivial to you will almost always serve to remind them only of why you should no longer matter to them. No one wants to be reminded of power they don’t possess, or money they don’t have, or luxuries they don’t own. People want to be made to feel big, not torn down or made to feel small. They want to work for people who are empathetic with their plight – not tone-deaf narcissists who seek to minimize the importance of their lived experience.  

See, empathy is not a function of trying to convince people that things that they very well know do matter don’t. It’s a simple function of putting yourself in another’s place and understanding as best as you possibly can, how they feel … either because you’ve asked them or because you’ve been there before – purposely having walked a mile in their shoes.

At a minimum, it’s about honestly admitting that you have no earthly idea how they feel but promising that it matters enough to you to find out and then caring enough to do so. Because two things are true. One, all that most people care about is that you care. Second, you can’t fake empathy. Either you care or you don’t. If you care more for the person in the mirror than the person sitting in front of you, find another line of work. Leadership probably isn’t your bag. Because if putting yourself first matters more to you that anything else, you’re going to be spotted a mile away. And when you are, people will turn and run – joining the more than 4 million others per month that are heading for the exits, looking for people who truly and actually care.

So, don’t fake empathy.

And win.

To learn more about the author, please follow this LINK.

To purchase a copy of Phillip Kane’s new book, The Not So Subtle Art of Caring, please click HERE.

Image credit: engin akyurt | Unsplash.com

Categories
Forgiveness

Give Second Chances

Give second chances. Phillip Kane's andwin.net blog.
Image credit: Tommao Wang | Unsplash.com

Friday, July 1, 2022

This week, for Catholics universally, was the solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul. The Gospel reading was from Matthew, chapter 16 – the story of Jesus promising that upon Peter, himself, would he build his church. 

We know that he followed through. John 21 tells us so.  Even without the text from John, the existence of some 2.5 billion Christians globally would make it clear enough besides.  Christ kept his word … despite Peter failing to keep his.

Many of you may recall that between his first being told he would be the foundational rock for the future Christian church and his ultimate commissioning, Peter denied Jesus 3 times – even after promising, upon penalty of death, not to.

But despite what many might view as the ultimate slight, the ne plus ultra of betrayals, Jesus the Christ gave Simon Peter another go. But that’s what you’d expect from a perfect human being. It’s a notion rooted in forgiveness and the idea that few ever achieve first place without having been given a second chance. 

And that’s the point for the week.



There is a persistent notion in American business that, in the often cut-throat game of corporate ladder climbing that the rule of one strike and you’re out applies. There is no margin for error. There is no allowance for a temporary loss of self-control. There is no understanding for decisions to prioritize other aspects of your life over the business. And so, over time, the field of “leadership” candidates winnows away as a greater number of once well-regarded high-potentials violate this coda or that, disqualifying themselves from further ascension.

But true, caring leaders – those being sought out by many of the more than 50 million workers who have left jobs in the last year looking for kinder, better work environments, and the leaders behind them, behave differently. These leaders not only believe in second chances, they encourage the sort of line-crossing and mold-breaking that leads to needing them. 

That’s because these people know that protecting the world as it is or insulating the old guard from any challenge or criticism will merely result in a world without change and a business that watches its competition stream past it. They know that people and organizations learn, not from success, but from mistakes, failures, and knocks on the head. They understand that the best of us has have been given a second chance, an opportunity for redemption and the occasion to prove that tossing them aside would have been a monumental error. 

For many, a second chance is a first date with adversity. Without second chances, we build columns of so-called leaders who have never known defeat, nor trial, nor the requirement of picking oneself up and pressing on. We build soft-skinned and soft-palmed tyrants mostly, with zero soft skills and almost always a world’s best boss mug that they bought for themselves. 

To find the winners in life, simply look for the ones passing out second chances. They’re the ones people want to be around – not because they are pushovers, but because they recognize that having more and being more in life is a direct function of having fallen and been helped back up by someone kind enough to give them a chance to try it all again tomorrow.

So, give second chances.

And win.

To learn more about Phillip Kane, please click HERE.

To purchase a copy of my book, The Not So Subtle Art of Caring: Letters On Leadership, from John Hunt Publishing, please follow this LINK

Image credit: Tommao Wang | Unsplash.com

Categories
General Leadership

Do Things Cleanly

Do Things Cleanly. Phillip Kane's Andwin.net blog
Image: Charlotte Kane

Saturday, June 25, 2022

This week, my daughter, Charlotte, started a blog of her own. She named it Bellezza Pulita, or Clean Beauty. Charlotte has a passion for a more refined sort of lifestyle without artificial fillers or extraneous things that either don’t belong or don’t add value or worse, that are potentially harmful or disruptive. She believes strongly that there is a cleaner path to beauty, style, food and culture.

As I thought more about what Charlotte was doing and saying, besides being proud of her, it also occurred to me that a lot of what she’s talking about has application for our lives in business too. It makes perfect sense. When we seek to do things more cleanly, with less waste and with greater refinement, we’ll win more often.

And that’s the point for the week.



I often tell those I have the privilege to work with or coach that the expenditure of any effort, resource, or expense on anything not 100% tied to attainment of the organization’s goals and objectives is waste. I tell people this because it’s true. The cleaner anything is, the less waste will be associated with it.

That’s because what is clean is sleek and streamlined; it’s something pure and undefiled; it’s something without unnecessary adornment or extra bits that contribute nothing to its stated purpose or objective. So, it would follow, then, that things done more cleanly will be far less wasteful and far more aligned to organizational goals. They will also tend to be beautiful.                                                                                           

Beauty is not just a superficial asthetic. It is, or should be, something far deeper than that. Beauty defines the way all parts of something come together in proportion and balance. Too much of anything or something out of place destroys not only appearance, but functionality and effectiveness as well. 

True, caring leaders seek beauty in all they do because they know that not only does the creation of beautiful things more often guarantee winning but it also guarantees that people stick around longer and bring more of their heart to everything they do. That’s because if given a choice, most people would rather create beautiful things than the alternative. It’s also because in creating things of lasting beauty, human beings derive great joy. And along with love and trust, it’s joy that people seek to bring fulfilment to their lives whether at home, at work or in giving back to their communities.

And it all starts with doing things more cleanly, with less wasted time and effort, less of everything no one wants and more of what customers will actually pay for, less resources squandered on things that don’t matter and more spending on things that do, less screaming and more encouraging, less hidden agendas and far more transparency, less trash and more treasure, less L and more P, and, more than anything, fewer people who don’t care and far more people who do.

Because like almost anything else in life, to do things more cleanly is a choice – a beautiful, wonderful choice between caring enough to create something beautiful or, as is the case for many, to not quite care at all. 

So, choose beauty. Do things cleanly.

And win.

For more like this, visit https://AndWin.net

To purchase a copy of Phillip Kane’s new book, The Not So Subtle Art of Caring, a better alternative to narcissistic, old-school, micromanagement, please click HERE.

Image: Charlotte Kane

Categories
General Leadership

Gather with Purpose

Gather with Purpose. Phillip Kane's andwin.net blog. Image credit: Pezibear | Pixabay.com
Image credit: Pezibear | Pixabay.com

Saturday, June 18, 2022

This week, Annie, and I spent a day looking at houses. We are thinking of moving to be closer to our children. We looked at old houses, new houses and in-between houses. We looked at big houses, little houses and in-between houses. We looked at close to town houses, away from town  houses and a bit in-between houses. We looked at move-in-ready houses, gut-job houses, and in between houses. We looked at houses like the one we have now, totally different houses, and in-between houses. We looked at open floorplan houses, chopped-up floorplan houses, and in-between houses. And the one we ended up liking the most was the most unlike anything we expected to like.

It wasn’t in a location we liked. It wasn’t built in the 20’s like we like. It wasn’t in an old neighborhood like we like. It didn’t have a story like we like. It wasn’t particularly attractive like we (and most people) like. It was a house that 9 times out of 10, we’d drive right past. But it felt like a home … because it was built for people to gather in. And as much as I continued to think I wanted the house that was the most like the house I have now in the neighborhood like I live in now, I couldn’t stop thinking about the unattractive, needs everything, feels-like-a-home gathering place. I think that’s because we’re made to gather; we’re happier that way, especially when we have a reason for doing so.

And that’s the point for the week.



Human beings are social creatures. We were created to be together with other human beings – in tribes, in clans, in clubs, in families, in communities, on teams and any other collection of two or more of us in any one place with a reason for being there. We do so because we don’t care for being alone doing nothing for long. Even the more introverted among us like more to be left alone than to be alone; because we are not made for extended solitude.

That’s why cases of depression and worse skyrocketed during the last two years of remote school and work. Zoom was an awful substitute for gathering together. Two dimensional images of those we care about were poor and unacceptable substitutes for the real thing. And when the lack of contact was combined with a lack of direction things became even worse. Millions of listless, lonely workers was a recipe for disaster.

It’s that same lack of direction, I think, which is now creating the bulk of the mixed emotions which are surrounding the return to the office for so many. It’s not so much that people don’t want to return to the office ever … they do. They long to see and gather with those they love and care about. What they aren’t looking forward to, and in many cases outright refuse to tolerate, is a combination of the office with lack of direction. They are willing to tolerate the latter from home but not after dressing for the office then enduring a commute to get there. Plus, when there doesn’t seem to be any actual togetherness once they arrive, the whole thing feels like a giant case of bait and switch.

Those that will win the return to the office game are those who understand that human beings have both a need to gather and a need for purpose. People will gladly show up in the office if they understand why they need to be there and are likewise rewarded by regular and meaningful gatherings with those they’ve missed. What they won’t tolerate are the early stabs at a hybrid model that feels worse even than either remote work or the office of yore because those in charge decided to combine the worst of both together into one awful construct they decided would be best for themselves.

This isn’t about spoiled workers with too much Covid money. Nor should it be about companies waiting people out until the Biden economy gets even worse and their perceived leverage returns. It’s about neither of those things. It’s fundamentally about people wanting to be with people. It’s about people wanting a purpose. And it’s about people wanting direction. None of those things seem like they are too much to ask for. People will gather together on purpose, it’s just what they do. Giving them a purpose to stay, well, that’s just what leaders do.

So, gather with purpose.

And win.

To learn more about the author, please follow this LINK.

To purchase Phillip’s new book, a finalist for the 2022 Hoffer prize, click HERE.

Image credit: Pezibear | Pixabay.com

Categories
General Leadership

Get Behind the Mask

Get behind the mask. Phillip Kane's andwin.net blog

Friday, June 10, 2022

Next week, my son, William, is going to racing school. It was a present for his 18th birthday. Like his father he likes cars. Like his grandfather, he like to go fast in cars. So, it seemed wise to combine some education with his fascination. So off to school he’s going to go. It’s something he’s been excited about … until the last week or so. Lately he’s seemed less enthusiastic about the whole thing. When before he’d talk about the adventure in a quite animated way, now he’s more reserved, matter of fact, and ready to change the subject. It has started to seem like something he doesn’t want to do anymore. The nearer time has come to leaving the less excited he’s become about going.

Finally, I asked him what was wrong. Of course, at first, it was, “nothing.” But eventually, I learned it was the 5 hours of flying it was going to take to get there. See, Will hates to fly. He always has. His trepidation about the trip, and what seemed the school, actually had nothing to do with the school. It was the air travel to get there. Will just wasn’t looking forward to the flight and it colored the way the rest of us thought he was thinking about the trip generally. Had I not asked him, I might have just cancelled the whole trip or made some other mistake based on my own assumptions of how and what he was feeling. That would have been a disaster. But then bad things typically happen when we simply assume what other people are thinking based on the masks they are wearing.

And that’s the point for the week.



When we try to diagnose the feelings of others from a distance bad things almost always happen. That’s because we’re almost never correct in our assumptions. The masks people wear are generally meant to hide their true feelings, not to portray them. But most of us miss that. Instead, we, at a glance, attempt to figure out what’s behind their expression, their body language, their eyes, not once thinking to simply ask them what’s going on. Then, acting on our own bad intelligence, we make matters worse.

In attempting to fix things we cause further damage. In attempting to heal, we create a greater rift. In attempting to bridge a gap, we widen one. All because we thought better of simply taking the time to get behind the mask, by showing that we care enough to ask what’s behind it.

After all, that’s what most people want anyway – to be cared about … to be listened to … to be unmasked, in their time and on their terms. No one wants by told by someone that they just fixed their problem when they haven’t even told that person what their problem is. But in most cases it’s not even about solving their problem. It’s simply about being listened to, about being understood, about not being judged, about someone saying, “I still love you no matter what” and “I’m not going to make stupid decisions based on stupid assumptions anymore.”

Most people want little more than that from their leaders, from their parents, from their siblings or from people they bump into on the street.

People don’t want to be the objects of assumption, they want to be the objects of affection. It’s truly no more complicated than that.

So, take the time to care enough to get behind the mask.

And win.

o learn more about the author, please click HERE.

To purchase a copy of Phillip’s new book, a finalist for the Eric Hoffer prize, please follow this LINK.

Image credit: Geralt | Pixabay.com