Sustainable economic development

We shall need a substantially new way of thinking if humanity is to survive.

~ Albert Einstein

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Oneness of humanity

Since climate change and the global economy now affect us all, we have to develop a sense of the oneness of humanity. ~ The Dalai Lama

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Climate change affects us all

Climate change respects neither border nor who you are. This we call global challenges requiring global solidarity. ~ Ban Ki-moon

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Climate change challenges humanity

Climate change is the Everest of all problems. The thorniest challenge facing humankind. ~ Lewis Gordon Pugh

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Say YES to Inspirational Leadership and Humanity

(Freeway Exit Sign. Artist: nattavut. Freedigitalphotos.net. 14102011)
(Freeway Exit Sign. Artist: nattavut. Freedigitalphotos.net. 14102011)

I was inspired to write this post for several reasons:

  • Inspiration is something that makes me tick, and something I personally welcome into my life each and every day.
  • Other inspirational people empower me, those, who always rise above their fears, insecurities, and challenges.
  • I have noticed, throughout my life, and my career, how much people need inspiration and encouragement. Every single day, I interact with other professionals, who either doubt themselves or humanity, and who need to be encouraged in order to have faith in themselves and in humanity.
  • Inspiration is equal to being connected with your soul, and your true purpose in life. We all experience less perfect days, but by connecting to source, finding meaning and purpose in our lives, and connecting to people who inspire, empower and believe in us, we can, and should have, faith in ourselves and in humanity.

I would like to share with you a story about staying motivated, and not giving up, even though things and circumstances may seem tough, or even rough at times, when people let us down, and we sometimes are about to lose faith in humanity. I do not know the origin of the story, but it is being widely spread online by different people:

 

ONE DAY I DECIDED TO QUIT

 

“I quit my job, my relationship, my spirituality… I wanted to quit everything.
I went to the woods to have a talk with Spirit.
“Spirit”, I asked,
“Can you give me one good reason not to quit?”.
The response surprised me…
“Look around”, Spirit said. “Do you see the fern and the bamboo?
“Yes”, I replied.

“When I planted the fern and the bamboo seeds, I took very good care of them.
I gave them light. I gave them water. The fern quickly grew from the earth.
Its brilliant green covered the floor. Yet nothing came from the bamboo seed. Yet, I did not quit on the bamboo. In the second year the Fern grew more vibrant and plentiful.
And again, nothing came from the bamboo seed. I still did not quit on the bamboo.
“In year three there was still nothing from the bamboo seed, but I would not quit.
In year four, again, there was nothing from the bamboo seed. I would not quit.”
“Then, suddenly, in the fifth year a tiny sprout emerged from the earth. Compared to the fern it was seemingly small and insignificant…But only 6 months later the bamboo rose to over 100 feet tall.
It had spent the five years growing roots. Those roots made it strong and gave it what it needed to survive.I would not give any of my creations a challenge it could not handle.”

Spirit asked me: “Did you know, my child, that all this time you have been struggling, you have actually been growing roots”.
“I would not quit on the bamboo, and I will never quit on you.”
“Don’t compare yourself to others.” Spirit continuet.”The bamboo had a different Purpose than the fern.
Yet they both make the forest beautiful.””Your time will come”, Spirit said to me.
“You will rise high”.
“How high should I rise?” I asked.
“How high will the bamboo rise?” Spirit asked in return.
“As high as it can?” I questioned.”Yes.” He said, “Give Me glory by rising as high as you can.”
I left the forest and brought back this story. I hope these words can help you see that Spirit will never give up on
you. Never, Never, Never, Give up.

Don’t tell Spirit how big the problem is, tell the problem how Great Spirit is”!

 

Picking Yourself Up And Dusting Yourself Off

What makes someone a skillful leader? And who is qualified to be a leader? 

The response to the second question is easy, but the first one requires a bit more of reflection. In my opinion, the list is never-ending, and a great leader never ceases to develop him or her.  

Some important skills for any leader: 

HUMANITY

Any leader needs to remember that we are all equal on this planet, despite of our backgrounds.

HUMILITY

Leadership is not about position – it´s about character. 

ACCOUNTABILITY

Keep your promises and don´t let people down. 

COMMUNICATION SKILLS

This is perhaps one of the most difficult of all including not only language and speaking skills, but also other means of communications such as writing, reading, and listening skills + gestures and expressions.

DECISIVENESS

Sometimes decision-making takes time, but please don´t let it take forever! Sometimes a bad decision is better than no decision at all. 

TEAM-BUILDING SKILLS 

Team-building is necessary because no one of us can survive alone, nor do all the work by ourselves. 

TEAM WORKING SKILLS

The team is only as strong as its weakest link so make sure to empower all your team members.

Team work is key to success.

EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE

This is probably one of the most important. Take time to develop your emotional intelligence – it is possible.

CAPABILITY OF WORKING ALONE

Ok, team work is important, but you also need to be capable of working in solitude.

EMPATHY

You don´t have to carry all the problems of the world, some empathy won´t harm you either.

SENSE OF HUMOR

Life is not always easy so a good proportion of humor and an ability to laugh at yourself and your mistakes is important when coping in different kinds of circumstances.

ABILITY TO PRIORITIZE

Work first, then the fun.

FLEXIBILITY

Many unexpected things may happen so be prepared for obstacles.

OPENNESS

If you are not open-minded, how can you see all the possibilities in front of you?

ANALYTICAL SKILLS

The more complex the business, the more important to know how to analyze.

RELIABILITY

Stick to your deadlines!

SELF-DISCIPLINE

Learn to lead yourself before leading others.

GOOD MANNERS

A “thank you” does not cost you anything.

SENSE OF MORAL/ETHICS

Great leaders do the right things.

OPTIMISM

Essential if you want to thrive.

REALISM

Understanding the hard facts.

CULTURAL AWARENESS

If you´re into international/global business, it is important to know the etiquette and the customs of the country in question.

NEGOTIATION SKILLS

Essential in order to reach your goals.

CREATIVITY

Sometimes, creativity is the only way forward. If opportunity does not knock, build a door!

ACTIVITY

Great leaders don´t wait for things to happen. They make things happen! 

RESILIENCE

Things may sometimes be difficult and life provides many kinds of obstacles on our paths, but great leaders never give up.

EMBRACING FAILURE

We all make mistakes and fail sometimes, but great leaders pick themselves and their teams up and dust themselves off.

PASSION

A great leader has a passion for everything he or she does. 

HUNGER FOR SUCCESS

Together with passion, a great leader is hungry for success and wants to achieve what´s important to him/her. 

In times of adversity, listening to a good song can be helpful in cheering yourself up: 

http://bit.ly/pickyourselfup

Lyrics for “Pick Yourself Up” (Original: Nat King Cole)

“Pick yourself up,
Take a deep breath,
Dust yourself off.
And start all over again

Nothing’s impossible, I have found
For when my chin is on the ground
I pick myself up, dust myself off
And start all over again

Don’t lose your confidence if you slip
Be grateful for a pleasant trip
And pick yourself up, dust yourself off
And start all over again

Work like a soul inspired
Until the battle of the day is won
You may be sick and tired
But you’ll be a man, my son

Will you remember the famous men
Who had to fall to rise again?

So take a deep breath,
Pick yourself up,
Dust yourself off,
And start it all over again

Work like a soul inspired
Till the battle of the day is won
You may be sick and tired
But you’ll be a man, my son

Will you remember the famous men
Who had to fall to rise again?

So take a deep breath,
Pick yourself up,
Dust yourself off,
And start all over again”

Virtues and Sins Part 2: Patience vs. Wrath

Have you ever felt impatient? Full of wrath, not knowing how to calm down or how to relax? Letting off steam in a proper manner e.g. through regular physical activities is good for anyone´s health, but if and when we do exercise wrath in maliscious ways, we end up harming not only others around us but most of all ourselves. Do you agree?

Having the gift of the tongue may be helpful in some situations, but playing a smart aleck can sometimes turn against you. Therefore, patience and the ability of listening, truly attentive listening often brings one further and enhances the birth of a true dialogue.

Then, what is a dialogue? And how is it related to patience and wrath? Simple questions, non?

A few years ago I had the privilege of attending a class held by Shawn Spano, Ph.D., about communication and dialogue at SJSU in Silicon Valley. According to Spano, there are many different approaches to dialogue. As an example, he used a unique form of human communication relating it to the social construction theory.

“Communication is the process through which we collectively create our social worlds. Rather than see communication as a neutral vehicle for transmitting information from one person to another, social construction treats communication as a primary activity, one that not only reflects meaning but shapes it as well”.

Seen from this perspective, everything comprising our social worlds (emotions, personalities, relationships, beliefs, attitudes, identities etc.) are being created in patterns of communication.

Social construction in key words:

– Individuals co-construct their social worlds through communication processes

– Communication is a process of action, not only transmission of information

– To widen the boundaries of people´s social worlds, there is a need to create communication bridges in-between these.

DIFFERENCES BETWEEN ARGUMENT AND DIALOGUE:

In Argument we…:

  • Try to win
  • Compete for speaking time
  • Speak for others
  • Create a potentially threatening and uncomfortable environment
  • Take sides with others
  • Polarize ourselves from those with whom we disagree
  • Feel unswerving commitment to a point of view
  • Ask questions to make a point or put the other person down
  • Make predictable statements
  • Make simplistic statements
  • COMPETE

In dialogue, we…:

  • Try to understand
  • Value listening
  • Speak from personal experience
  • Create an atmosphere of safety
  • Discover differences even among those with whom we agree
  • Discover shared concerns between ourselves and others
  • Discover our uncertainties as well as deeply held beliefs
  • Ask questions out of true curiosity and the desire to know more
  • Discover significant new things
  • Explore the complexity of the issues being discussed
  • COLLABORATE

(Source: http://www.publicconversations.org)

Once again: what has this got to do with patience and wrath?

Just about everything, since we all have the ability of constructing our social worlds through our means of communication. Communication and dialogue are at the core of every individual´s and organization´s success, but still, more often than not, undervalued.

Through the development of communication and dialogue we can all become successful at what we do, both in business and private.

For more information, feel free to contact me and to comment my posts. I love being in dialogue with people.