Dealing with Dissonance

Dissonance fact v belief

As human beings, we get very uncomfortable when our internal beliefs don’t match up with our external reality. When what we believe and what we see or do or experience don’t align, we consciously or unconsciously yearn to reconcile the discrepancy.   There are several possible paths we might take to alleviate this cognitive dissonance and […]

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 Forget what’s wrong. Ask what’s right?


There seems to be a natural human tendency to be preoccupied with what’s wrong.  I think the intention is often good—let’s get to the heart of the problem so we can fix it.   So we ask:  What’s wrong with a situation? What’s wrong with this organization?  With this child?  With this country?  But personal fulfillment, higher performance […]

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 Increasing Your Purpose Ratio


On any given day, you’re going to feel a certain amount of negative emotions (disappointment, sadness, anger, anxiety) and a certain amount of positive emotions (joy, excitement, love, hope). Positive Psychologist, Barbara Fredrickson, calls this the Positivity Ratio. Most people go through life with a kind of 1:1 balanced ratio. When you ask them, ‘how’s […]

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 Seeing the Seeds of Greatness

Hands Holding a Seedling and Soil ca. 2000

“We all have more potential than meets the unappreciative eye.”–Tal Ben-Shahar Think of your innate potential as a tiny little seed buried deep within.  It needs light.  It needs water.  It needs nourishment in order to flourish.  But before any of that can happen, it needs to be seen.  Someone has to acknowledge that the […]

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