Volume 104, July 2010: Love and Happiness

Keyzine: An E-zine for Leaders about the People Side of Business

Summer Edition

This is a monthly electronic magazine for anyone who wants to be a better leader, coach, facilitator, or simply, to tune up their people skills. It is a complimentary publication, devoted to the next evolution of Quality Thinking.

Publisher: © Key Associates, LLC, 2010 ISSN # 1545-8873

“Love cures people, both the ones who give it and the ones who receive it.” — Dr. Karl Menninger

“Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass … it’s about learning how to dance in the rain.” — Patricia T. Green

“Love is the condition in the human spirit so profound that it allows one to survive, and better than that, to thrive with passion, compassion and style.” — Maya Angelou

“{4} Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. {5} It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. {6} Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. {7} It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. {8} Love never fails …” — 1 Corinthians 13

“Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace and gratitude.” — Dennis Waitley

IN THIS ISSUE:

  • What’s Hot in Leadership
  • Maintaining Yourself as a Leader
  • Frequently Asked Questions from Leaders
  • Educational Opportunities
  • Useful Websites & Newsletters
  • Articles/Publications

What’s Hot in Leadership

  • Passion combined with compassion.
  • Pointing your heart toward the person with whom you are communicating.
  • Shedding the culture of blame and cultivating joy in work.
  • Deeds not words. Small acts of kindness fill the giver.
  • Reinventing work as more than a job.

Maintaining Yourself as a Leader

As a Mother about to experience her only child’s wedding, I am contemplating the meaning of love and the experience of happiness – which seem to be intertwined.

What does this have to do with leadership and work? I see in so many workplaces, people rushing to retirement, weighed down by their jobs, riddled with conflict, underappreciated – if they have a job at all. The economic environment and other pressures amplify feelings of worry, loss, anxiety, detachment and depression. What I see lacking is relationship – to self, to the organization, to others, to meaningful work.

Let’s reinvent the workplace and redefine work in these tough times – as community, as service, as an expression of our caring, pride, and value. It is the leader’s task to pull the threads into a whole cloth.

Frequently Asked Questions

“Where do I begin?”
With your authentic self. Martin Seligman (2002, 2006) described incorporating strengths such as humor, originality and generosity into everyday interactions with people. This is the way to achieve happiness.
Display and cultivate within yourself kindness, tolerance, competence, interpersonal skills, a work ethic, and faith. These are the vital ingredients of a gratifying and happy life.
Buddha would say, “Happiness never decreases by being shared.”
“How does it spread?”
First, understand the barriers to pride in your workplace.
Provide people meaningful work to do. Focus on the skills, talents, and knowledge required in the job role, and how each person uniquely contributes to the overall mission.
Do not practice motivating from without (rewards, punishment) – the true love of work comes from within (see Motivation).
Take time to dialogue about an employee’s special strengths and how they can make a difference. Then provide recognition, acknowledgement, and the freedom to do what they do well (see Strength-based Organizations).
Encourage processes where people can develop high-quality relationships: teams, partners, clients, projects, celebration. We’isms, not me’isms. (see Employee Engagement).
“This is a bit Pollyana. We know there is negativity out there.”
Of course – in leaders and followers alike (see Cynicism and On the Dark Side of Leadership).
In a civilized organization, a leader must take the main role in developing, expressing, and defending civility and values (Max DePree, 1990). Good manners, civility (see Civility), respect for others – these are conditions for participation in the community. With some degree of tolerance (remember, the irritants are trying to survive, be valued and recognized just like everyone else), and some reframing (this, too, shall pass), declare the expectation that civility is expected. And back it up.

Exercises And Action Items:

  • Practice one new act of kindness daily. Love is made nimble by practicing (Gayle Alexander’s class, Spiritual Journeys for Women).
  • Smile. The feedback from your face will engender happiness. When you don’t feel like Christmas, just start behaving in Christmas ways.
  • What is your code of civility? Where is the line crossed?

Education

E-course, e-book, daily quotes: True Happiness – How to Be Happy in Life.

The Feeling Good Handbook by David D. Burns.

Many surveys on optimism and authentic happiness: Welcome to Authentic Happiness.

Tests administered to students found that love correlated most closely with happiness, followed by the two other particularistic resources, services and status (Gordon, 1975): Effects of interpersonal and economic resources upon values and the quality of life.

Key Associates offers leadership training and team-building events. Contact us for more information.

Useful Websites & Newsletters

A Chief Happiness Officer announces international newsletter.

Many articles on happiness created through self-awareness: Happiness is Created Through Self Awareness.

Work and happiness is the opposite of hopelessness and feelings of worthlessness – I love my work! I Love My Work.

Keyzines on related topics: Spirit at Work, Speaking from the Heart, Optimism, Employees as Customers, Building Community, Relationship Building, Minding Manners, The World of Words, Employee Engagement, Civility, and Creating a Spirit of Community in the Workplace

Articles/Publications


 

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