Dove with Branch
May 18, 2015

Insights From

the Dean of Peace

 

Notes from the Dean's Desk
Dear Peacemaker,
 
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Ask the Dean?
Dean Van Leuven   Global Struggle

Dear Dean, I have a problem at work. People never pass along important information to me, even though it is important for me to know so that I can do my work properly. For example I need to know about our orders so I can determine how much material to buy. This upsets me and affects my performance. How can I get them to give me the correct figures? - Randy in CO

 

Dear Randy, Have a meeting and talk about it. Explain your need and learn about their problems. If you are not getting the right answers learn to interpolate. The most important thing is to not allow yourself to become upset by this problem. If it is out of your control accept it as something you need to become more skilled in working with. - the Dean

 

Dear Dean, The people I work with are very aggressive people. I am not aggressive and don't need to be since what I do in my job is primarily to support them. The problem is that they are always taking advantage of me. They ask me to do much of the work they should be doing, and then are rude if it's not done the way they think it should be done. If I suggest they should do it themselves they just get angry and complain that I am rude and lazy. How should I deal with this? - Barb in MA

 

Dear Barb, Helping people is great if that is your job, or if you like doing that. If however it is upsetting you then you have the problem of dealing with the power issues of your fellow employees. Since this is extra work you have a choice of not doing it. If you like doing it then require that they appreciate and don't complain about it. Since you can choose not doing it don't feel you must, and don't be upset when someone asks - or when you tell them "sorry I can't help today" and they still complain. - 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 intact. We can and should make war only our tool of last resort for self-protection.

 

Creating a Peaceful New World
  World Peace

Most often the anger directed toward us is due to the other person having different expectations than our own. They are operating under the assumption that we will act toward them in a certain way; and when we don't, their anger is triggered. They may have very different beliefs and be totally unaware of our point of view or motivation; or they simply may be very different from us in many ways.

 

In dealing with another person's emotions, it is important to be aware of the fact that the other person wants something to come out of their relationship with you. The key is to understand their expectations, and to help them understand yours.

 

Such mutual understanding is brought about by meaningful communication. Rather than expecting the other person to feel the same way as you do about the situation that has made them upset, make a real effort to find out how they are thinking about something. In order to get a good understanding of what's driving their upset, so that you can ultimately diffuse it, you need to hone your listening and communication skills. Train yourself to be a good listener by learning how to "listen deeply." To do this, you must put your own thoughts and beliefs on hold, and really focus on what the other person is saying.

 
Tips for Peaceful and Joyful Living
  Left Arrow

Monday: When someone is upset with you ask yourself why you think they are angry.

 

Tuesday: When someone is upset ask yourself what they are expecting from you.

 

Wednesday: When someone is angry with you ask yourself what different belief they have that is causing the upset.

 

Thursday: When someone is asking something from you find out exactly what they are expecting and why they do.

 

Friday: When you are asking something of someone make sure they understand exactly what you are expecting and why you expect it.

 

Saturday: When someone asks something from you try to understand their request from their point of view.

 

Sunday: Resolve to always be a good listener, and understand fully the meaning and feeling of what others are relating to you.

 

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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