Dove with Branch
December 19, 2011 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, I have a good friend who often tells me he is going to do something for me such as help me rake the leaves, but he never does. Last week he promised he would come over and help me repair the fence but he never came. The next time I saw him he never even mentioned it, let alone say he was sorry. How can I get him to do what he says? - Del in VA

Dear Del, You might ask him if he would like a reminder call. Perhaps that morning, or when you are about ready to start. He has developed this behavior pattern that he has apparently chosen to do nothing about. If you let him know how you feel about it perhaps he will care enough to change, but don't count on it. If you want to keep the relationship the thing you must learn is to expect that kind of behavior as normal for him, and not be upset by unrealized expectations based on his promises. - the Dean

Dear Dean, My wife has told me that I must quit shouting at her when I get upset or she is going to leave me. She makes a lot of mistakes and doesn't seem to care about making them right. I was taught that when someone makes a mistake they are obligated to fix it. I don't shout at her because she makes mistakes, I shout at her because she doesn't fix them they way she should. What do you suggest? - Mark in CA

Dear Mark, Your expectations of your wife don't match her way of looking at the world. She has a habit of not doing things the way you want them done and you have a habit of being upset when she doesn't. You have a habit that causes you to believe she should do it your way. The way you respond is just a belief and a habit you have. Your belief is not serving you well. If you want to keep the relationship, you need to learn to respond differently. If you can't do it on your own I suggest a counselor; or my book. - 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

It seems that when we perceive that our government is doing something wrong we start a resistance movement to stop it. Probably the most notable at this time is the war in Afghanistan. We are marching frequently to try to create pressure to bring the troops home. We don't like what is going on and we want it to stop so we "fight" to end the war. Our solution when we don't like what is going on is just to put up resistance until change is made.

The problem with resistance is that it works to stop the harmful conduct without offering a positive solution to the problem. If we want to have peace and stop wars not only must we stop wars, we must also discover a way to live in peace. If we focus on creating peace, then not only can we find a way for the war to end, but we can also create conditions so that future wars are unnecessary. We must change the thinking that causes us to use war as a way to resolve conflict, before we will stop using war as a way to have our way in the world.

When Mother Teresa was asked to march against war she refused saying, "call me when you are marching for peace." We admire her thinking and her way of being. Let's recognize the value of her thinking. We will quit using war as a tool to settle disputes when we recognize that there are better ways to settle our differences. Why squander our lives and our resources when there are better solutions available to us? Let's no longer use war as a tool of diplomacy to solve our problems. We can instead use some form of mediation to solve our problems and end up friends with our relationships and resources still in tact. We can and should make war only our tool of last resort for self-protection.

Creating a Peaceful New World
  World Peace

Personal Peace comes from the way we view and respond to the world around us. Our own personal world and the way we feel about it is determined by the way we chose to respond rather than by what actually happens to us.

Whatever happens is simply what happens. How we choose to view it is determined by our own personal belief system, the way we look at things, and how we feel about all of the stuff that has happened to us in the past. How we feel, and how we respond to something always comes from our own personal choice that we make at the moment the event or thought occurs to us.

Most of us have learned to judge events as either good or bad and respond accordingly. This is the way our parents and the world have taught us how to deal with things. We are taught that we are supposed to feel bad, or angry, when certain things happen. Too often we make a judgment that things are bad and then respond from our negative emotions, instead of being able to calmly think about what happened before we choose how to respond.

Tips for Peaceful and Joyful Living
  Left Arrow

Monday: Think about how your beliefs are created out of your teaching and experiences.

Tuesday: Think about how you would feel if your beliefs did not cause you to be upset.

Wednesday: Think about the beliefs you have about your family that you would like to change.

Thursday: Think about the beliefs you have about your work that you would like to change.

Friday: Think about the beliefs you have about your community and your country that you would like to change.

Saturday: Think about the beliefs you have about yourself that you would like to change.

Sunday: Resolve that when your beliefs are upsetting, you will find a new belief to replace them.

Dean Van Leuven is a psychologist, conducts workshops and is the author of Life Without Anger 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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