Dove with Branch
August 12, 2013 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 disobeys and refuses to follow my rules I set down for her. I sometimes get so upset at her that I scream at her, and have even slapped her on a few occasions. I am ashamed of myself. How can I stop this behavior? - Loretta in FL

 

Dear Loretta, You and your daughter have both learned strategies of responding that are not effective, and self-defeating. It seems impossible to stop because they have become an automatic response pattern that happens whenever you are "provoked." Just like when you buy a new car with different controls or get a new computer operating system you can learn a new response pattern. This is a serious problem. If you can't do it on your own or with the help of my book I suggest you seek counseling. - the Dean

 

Dear Dean, My sister and I have fought for years. We are very different and find it hard to see the other's point of view. We are middle aged. It is difficult to even talk to each other. I feel it is time we get over this and find a way to get along. How can I go about this? - Brad in MO

 

Dear Brad, You can start by accepting her as perfect just the way she is. Learn to think that it is okay that she has different beliefs and goals in life than you do. The next thing is to tell her that you have come to understand and are truly sorry for the way you have acted toward her. Next find time to show her that you care by visiting and being friendly whenever the opportunity arises. Do not beg forgiveness or push for togetherness. It will happen when she realizes that things have truly changed. - 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

As humans banded together; at first in small communities and then in ever larger social structures we developed rules about how we should live and function together. These are the rules that have become the laws and traditions which determine how our society functions. These structures were created at a time when we were concerned primarily with our safety and when we had little trust that others would follow the rules voluntarily.

 

We developed solutions that did not look beyond the immediate problem we were trying to solve and did not contemplate changes that would occur in the future. Conditions changed and needs changed but rules changed only a little. Our rules and laws are bound by the traditions of the past that are difficult to change.

 

We need to exam these structures in some detail to determine possible changes that will bring them into harmony with our objective of creating a harmonious framework for our society. Our objective is to create a framework that will make it possible for each of us on this planet to experience a peaceful and joyful life. In working to create peace we need to examine each of our society's operating systems to determine their goals and purpose. We need to discover the stresses and obstacles created by the way they presently function. We need to have a general understanding of the functioning and objectives of each of these areas. This will allow us to be able to create productive changes that will help to align these systems more closely with our need to function effectively and to be creative in a Peaceful World.

Creating a Peaceful New World
  World Peace

We say we would like to have peace, but it never happens. It is always the "other persons fault." There seems to be an unlimited supply of "other persons" in the world, and perhaps we are sometimes one of them ourselves. Why do we always get angry and blame the other guy when things don't go our way? It is because we think they are wrong and we are right. Isn't it possible we are both right; and both wrong when we get angry?

 

If we are to have peace we must learn to stop getting angry at other people. When we get angry at others we quit treating them with respect. We are no longer caring, or even open to why they think the way that they do. When we are angry we have the idea that they must do it our way, or we will make them do it. We think they are bad and should be punished. We judge them by our customs when they have been living by theirs.

 

We are willing to impose our power, even to the death if need be, to make them do it our way. We may be able to do this without resorting to war because they are weak. We may be happy for the moment because we have things our way. But instead of solving the problem it only sets us up for more conflict in the future. We have made an enemy that we didn't need to make! When we listen to others, understand their differences, and seek resolution we can create a peace that will be lasting.

Tips for Peaceful and Joyful Living
  Left Arrow

Monday: I realize that my life is not controlled by what other people think of me.

 

Tuesday: If I make an honest mistake I do not feel shame.

 

Wednesday: I do not need to control what other people do.

 

Thursday: I do not blame others for their honest mistakes.

 

Friday: I do not try to control others by making them ashamed.

 

Saturday: Others are not obligated to me simply because they made an honest mistake.

 

Sunday: I give up the need to always be right.

 

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 conduct workshops throughout the United States and Canada. These workshops 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."

 

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