Love Has No Labels

February 13, 2018

Maybe you’ve seen the images? A white square superimposed over a picture of your friend, mom or coworker, an NFL quarterback, celebrity or news anchor. Inside the box, this phrase: “love has no labels.”

This campaign—though “campaign” can’t really capture its essence—is spreading, and fast.

The motto is simple, as the most powerful revolutionary thoughts tend to be: “Before anything else, we are human.”

Personally, I cannot help but think of the opening to Pride & Prejudice, “It is a truth universally acknowledged that…” It seems painfully simple to say that we are human. Obviously, we [...]

Posted in Communication & Interpersonal Skills, Brain Fitness, Mindfulness and Perspective

How to Cultivate Healthy Collaboration and Team

December 13, 2017

Nothing is more exciting and empowering than working on a project or playing on a dynamic team—until it’s not. An energetic brainstorming can go completely awry by a subtle putdown. A co-worker makes a critical comment about a blog posted on the company newsletter. Someone makes a disparaging remark about another person's work. Most everyone has experienced something like this, right?

Posted in Business and Leadership, Communication & Interpersonal Skills

The Stop, Drop, and Roll of Successful Communication

August 02, 2016

Most of us (especially parents) know what to do if our clothes catch fire: STOP, DROP, and ROLL. But do we know what to do if our relationship catches fire?

Our relationship may function smoothly and harmoniously most of the time. But when a conflict does arise, we may find out that we just don’t know how to resolve it. Many times, the problem lies in our lack of communication skills.

We all want to feel heard and understood. If we don’t know how to establish real connection through effective communication in our love relationship, we may find ourselves competing within the relationship [...]

Posted in Love, Marriage, and Relationships, Communication & Interpersonal Skills

How to Give Feedback Effectively

January 06, 2016

Often we hold back from giving feedback to others, even when it’s important to us and to the health of our relationship. Maybe we’re afraid we’ll hurt their feelings even if it's constructive, or we’re afraid of their reaction. Or maybe we think they’ll feel we’re criticizing them. But if we don’t give others feedback, we may hold on to resentment or anger toward them, which can spill over into later communications and even cause distance in our relationship.

Posted in Communication & Interpersonal Skills, Emotional Intelligence & Fitness

How to Give Effective Feedback to Children

April 23, 2014

One of the biggest misconceptions about creating healthy self-esteem in children is that praise is an important ingredient in building it. But praise can actually deplete self-esteem. Why? Because too much praise causes children to become dependent on what other people think, instead of focusing on what makes them happy and how they feel about themselves and their actions. Praise promotes pleasing others and relying on others for validation.

Posted in Perfectly Imperfect Parenting, Communication & Interpersonal Skills

Finding Bliss Everyday

July 03, 2013

When my kids were still in the baby-zone, I left them and my husband for four glorious days in New York City with a couple of close girlfriends. I was worried that I would miss the family, but instead I thoroughly enjoyed every single moment of freedom. Shortly after returning, I met with Jennifer and cried my heart out, mourning the fact that that sense of freedom had come and gone so quickly. I had a whole year to wait until I could do something like that again.

Posted in Perfectly Imperfect Parenting, Communication & Interpersonal Skills

Meaningful Mentors

April 19, 2013

I write regularly for a women’s business website, and I often have the opportunity to interview career women who are really making a difference in their workplaces and their communities. In these interviews, we often discuss how they got where they are, what kinds of things factored into their success, and how they balance it all. One factor that almost always comes up is mentors, and the importance of women helping other women.

Posted in Communication & Interpersonal Skills

No Sense of Hurry

October 15, 2012

This past weekend I was in Lewistown for my son's football game. Prior to the game, we made a quick pit stop at the local truck stop. As I was waiting to use the restroom, a mother and two young girls were coming out. The mother held the door wide open while waiting for her oldest who was meticulously washing her hands. She bombarded her daughter with "Hurry! Hurry!" then turned to me and said: "Kids! They have no sense of hurry!”  Ah, a parenting stress moment; we've all been there.

Posted in Perfectly Imperfect Parenting, Communication & Interpersonal Skills

Lying Is Easy; Honesty Is Loving

June 08, 2012

Honesty is a value I have espoused for many, many years. I didn’t always, though. In fact, when I was growing up, I was a prolific liar. Like a chameleon, I mirrored the people I was with or transformed myself into what people wanted me to be. I made a game out of fooling people and seeing how smoothly I could transition between my Shakespearean acts. But my game came to a screeching halt when I awoke as a young woman and realized that I could not tell the difference between what was real and what was a lie. Whatever lie you tell yourself enough, you begin to believe.

Posted in Communication & Interpersonal Skills

What Is Most Important?

May 25, 2012

As I sit waiting for my flight in the Denver airport, I am struck by the busy but disjointed scene around me. The gentleman next to me has been surfing the web nonstop for an hour. All but one person out of about twenty at United Airlines Gate B82 are hooked into computers, cell phones, iPads, or a Kindle (including me as I write this blog). No smiles, no conversation.

Posted in Communication & Interpersonal Skills