Dove with Branch
February 15, 2010 Insights From the Dean of Peace
Notes from the Dean's Desk
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Ask the Dean?
Dean Van Leuven   Global Struggle

Dear Dean, My daughter has married and moved to another state. The only contact I have is Christmas and birthday cards. I ask her to call but she doesn't. I miss her very much. What do you suggest? - Grace in VA

Dear Grace, The lessons she learned growing up apparently did not include keeping in close touch with her mother. Perhaps this is because you taught her to be independent. Now is the time to give her whatever love she will accept, and appreciate the person you have taught her to become. You can try to find a positive way to be in her life, but do not offer beyond what she is willing to accept. Perhaps unfortunately, our society does not include an obligation to care about our parents. - the Dean

Dear Dean, I make collages and like to hang them on my walls. My husband says that he does not like collages and refuses to allow them to be displayed in the home. We seem to be OK with everything else. He says that some of my pictures include old boyfriends and he doesn't want to be reminded of them. I have no love attachment to old boyfriends but I like be reminded of my fond memories which sometimes include them. Should I put away the old collages or replace some pictures just to make him happy? - Cicily in CA

Dear Cicily, Yes, no, and maybe. It isn't necessary to eliminate your collages just because of his problem and he needs to work on getting over his jealousy. To have a successful marriage he needs to learn to trust. On the other hand a little compassion may be in order. Perhaps a compromise, such as putting the old pictures away and creating new ones might be helpful if he agrees to work on his problem in return. Neither of you are perfect. Helping each other to get better is part of a good relationship. - the Dean

I welcome questions and/or comments from our readers. Send your Ask the Dean questions or comments to: 90022 Sheffler Rd., Elmira, OR 97437, or visit www.DeanOfPeace.com. to submit by e-mail.

Law, Politics & Society ... As I see them
  Globe Magnify Glass

Many of us live in a world of turmoil. We often fail to realize that inner peace and joy are equally available to each of us. Regardless of the circumstances in our life it is a personal decision whether we allow ourselves to be upset by what happens - or not. We will accept anything as appropriate if we personally believe that is the way life should be. And we will fear anything we believe is fearful.

We accepted the idea that communism was going to take over the world and that we must prevent it from advancing at every turn and at any cost. As a result of this fear we entered into war of rebellion against the government in Vietnam. Many lives were lost and even though we lost, the results turned out well. Things would have turned out even better had we not entered the war. Life is too dear to lose it over our irrational fears.

The next time we want to enter into a fight with someone I suggest that we look at the situation from their point of view, and try to determine what they want to accomplish instead of looking just at our fear of what could happen. The world is not naturally a "dog eat dog" world. We have made it that way unnecessarily because of our distrust and fears. Everyone may want something from someone else, but we have learned long ago that we can accomplish more by negotiating than fighting.

Creating a Peaceful New World
  World Peace

If we think we must have a certain result, then we are addicted to the outcome. If we desire a certain result, we have a preference. If we have no preference as to what the results will be then it is easy to be accepting. If we are accepting, then we have no negative emotions attached to the event or to the outcome. We can also learn that we do not have to be emotionally attached to the outcome, even when we have a preference. We can accept the idea that we are willing to try things the other person's way.

For everything that happens in our life, there are three possibilities: (1) We can change it, (2) We can leave it, or (3) We can accept it. With each event in our life we need to make this choice. For example; consider your work. You may not be happy with it just the way it is. Is there a way you might change it to make it better? If that is not possible, then your next choice might be to leave it. That may not be possible for the present, because you may need the work in order to eat, or pay the rent. You then can choose to accept your work, or you may choose to make a plan to change to new employment in the future. If you choose to make a change later, then you need to make the decision to accept your work for now. As with all of life's experiences, if we don't find a way to make our work experience a positive one, then we are left with negative emotions in our lives. < p align="justify">

To remove any anger or other negative emotions from your life, you need to apply this principle of change it, leave it, or accept it each time you need to make a choice. The important thing is to remember that if you can't change something and are not going to leave it that the only choice left for you is to accept it.

Tips for Peaceful and Joyful Living
  Left Arrow

Monday: Today I release all anger from my life.

Tuesday: Today I celebrate my commitment to live in peace.

Wednesday: Every day I join others in a prayer for world peace.

Thursday: Today I accept the viewpoints of others as valid for them.

Friday: Today I agree to understand the viewpoints of others.

Saturday: Today I choose to feel loving toward those whom I disagree with.

Sunday: Today I choose to love the world and appreciate my life experience.

Dean Van Leuven is a psychologist, conducts workshops and is the author of A Peaceful New World and many other books dealing with quality of life issues. Contact him on the web at: www.DeanOfPeace.com

Additional Notes
 

The World Emotional Literacy League in conjunction with World Without Anger and Lumbini Buddhist University has taken on the task of introducing emotional literacy training in the educational system of Nepal nationwide. In support of that program I will be conducting workshops throughout the United States and Canada. These workshops will provide an introduction to the emotional skills training program as well as an introduction to establishing emotional skills training programs in your local area. The program and my workshops are based on my textbook "Emotional Intelligence - Taking Control of Your Life."

I have taken on the task of supporting the teaching of emotional skills training in the educational system with the trust and hope, that many in your community will be able to share in the vision of this great work, and join us in this amazing project. We are promoting a "Sponsor a School" program to raise awareness and support throughout the U.S. & Canada If you have any interest in the program and/or having a workshop in your area. Contact me for additional information.

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I welcome your suggestion or comments. If you have a question that you would like addressed in the Ask the Dean? column feel free to send them to drdean@lifewithoutanger.com

 

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