Empathy & the Empathetic Apology: New, Improved "I am sorry."

October 08, 2019

Apologies are essential in our relationships. No matter how they are given, whether through an apology letter or in person, apologies recognize that hurt has happened due to the actions of another. Without that recognition, bitterness and resentment can build.

When given freely and sincerely, apologies hold the power to be precious. They say, “I have screwed up and have hurt you.” Are we able to mend and move forward in our relationship in spite of the screw-up? Will the experience result in greater distance or more closeness and understanding?

Posted in Emotional Intelligence

Top 3 Mindsets Managers Need to Be Successful!

October 01, 2019

Every company needs managers to make sure that the work gets done and employees stay on track. Every manager needs specific skills to be successful. However, many people who excel at their job get promoted to management without proper training. Managing people is vastly different from managing a process or project, and studies find that companies pick or hire the wrong people for managers 82% of the time! Now that’s a ton of wasted time, lost revenue, retraining costs, and frustration.

Finding the right people with the needed skill sets may be challenging. However, without the right [...]

Posted in Business and Leadership

My Kids Are Driving Me Crazy: 3 Parenting Tips for Sanity

September 17, 2019

A common phrase I often hear while teaching parenting classes or in parent coaching sessions is, “My kids are driving me crazy!” It doesn’t matter if the child is a toddler or a teen; this level of exasperation is more common than you may think. No matter the age of children, this is a plea for help. Unfortunately, as parents, we can often feel alone, like we’re the only ones who feel this way. And then guilt rises. After all, what’s wrong with us that we don’t like spending time with our children. Or worse, we jump to the conclusion that we’re failing as parents. We might even wonder [...]

Posted in Perfectly Imperfect Parenting

Marriage Advice: Sweat the Small Stuff!

September 10, 2019

A few weeks ago, I made a quick stop at the grocery store that turned into a lesson in love. While scanning the grocery cooler for a Greek yogurt I like, an older gentleman noticed my futile search. He was stocking the dairy aisle and inquired what I was looking for. He pointed me in the right direction; I had totally missed my favorite brand because of a new packaging design. It’s called change blindness, a cognitive phenomenon where we’re unable to detect small or large visual changes due to familiarity.

Anyway, we struck up a conversation. (My husband learned long ago that there are no [...]

Posted in Love, Marriage, and Relationships

How to Teach Empathy to Children and Create Understanding

September 03, 2019

Recently I went into The Flooring Place to get my Douglas Honeycomb shades repaired. As I waited to speak to a clerk, I saw an ad about flooring that read: Water resistant. Worry relief. This ad illustrates a simple principle: prevention.

Empathy is prevention. Empathy creates relief from emotional duress and upset. When a person truly listens and understands us, we feel heard, and emotions dissipate. Upset is no match for empathy. Feeling heard is a human need, and an empathetic response goes to the core of this need. So how do we teach this critical skill to our children?

Posted in Perfectly Imperfect Parenting

Simple and Effective Ways of Thriving Team Building

August 20, 2019

Is a thriving team one that is profitable and productive? Or is it one where everyone is friends? Ask 100 people, and you might get 100 different answers.

The popular show “The Office” exemplifies this discrepancy well. Michael Scott, manager of the Scranton branch of fictional Dunder Mifflin, figured that as long as his team was laughing, they were thriving. He justified his behavior and antics, no matter how crazy, with the intent of creating a fun workplace. However, the corporate office only viewed the Scranton branch as thriving because they were profitable and outshining other [...]

Posted in Business and Leadership

People-Pleasing Compliance—a Felony Against Self

August 15, 2019

"Sure, I'd be happy to watch your dog for the weekend." "Absolutely, you can count on me for that fundraiser." "No problem—I'll help decorate the kids' lockers for the big game!" "Sure, I'll help you finish that project and stay at the office until it's done!"

It's so easy to say yes, isn't it? Before we even think, agreement and caring responses slide off our tongues. But do you agree with someone and then regret it? It's true, we are creatures of habit. And if you're in the habit of being a people pleaser, it's a habit you may be looking to break up with!

Often people pleasers are well [...]

Posted in Emotional Intelligence & Fitness

The Power of Empathy: More than a Band-Aid for the Heart

August 13, 2019

One of the most needed and talked about topics and skills right now is empathy. Why? Because we are all longing for connection. People are hungry to be understood. And empathy has become a lost art. The power of empathy is at the core of emotional intelligence (EQ) and relationship mastery. It faithfully delivers the ability to connect with people we love and care about—and even handle those difficult people in our lives gracefully.

Do you ever feel ill-equipped to respond to a friend, spouse, or co-worker when they're sharing strong feelings or a painful experience? Do you postpone those [...]

Posted in Emotional Intelligence, How to Build Empathy

5 Simple Keys to a Happier, Vibrant Life

August 10, 2019

How would your life be different if you could have regular support, deep connection, and inspiration that you could count on?

Life without love and friendship is empty. Work without support, collaboration, and a shared vision make for a lonely path. As human beings, we are wired for relationship, and connecting is crucial. Families, businesses, and communities disintegrate without genuine connection. Happier living requires connection with oneself and each other!

Sure, we can climb the mountain of life alone, but it's not as safe and isn't nearly as fun! Going it alone isn't what we need [...]

Posted in Emotional Intelligence

Parenting Challenges and Tales During Intergenerational Living

August 01, 2019

Every summer, my little family of four heads travels to the family cottages in Northern Michigan. Once there, we meet up with three generations of cousins, two sets of grandparents, and a multitude of friends. The friends’ cottages are also full of multiple generations across their family trees. Intergenerational living in cottages is a lot of fun, but it can also have its share of challenges.

What does this have to do with you? Intergenerational living is subject to a long list of struggles—and joys—that others don’t have. But at the heart of this complex dynamic, the challenges are the [...]

Posted in Perfectly Imperfect Parenting