Tag: Self-awareness (home)

"How can you come to know yourself? Never by thinking; always by doing. Try to do your duty, and you'll know right away what you amount to."

permalink source: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, German poet and dramatist
tags: Self-awareness

I am not what I ought to be. I am not what I want to be. I am not what I hope to be. But still, I am not what I used to be. And by the grace of God, I am what I am.

permalink source: John Newton (1725-1807)
tags: Self-awareness

WHY DOES IT HURT? A man went to see his doctor in an acute state of anxiety. "Doctor," he said, "you have to help me. I'm dying. Everywhere I touch it hurts. I touch my head and it hurts. I touch my leg and it hurts. I touch my stomach and it hurts. I touch my chest and it hurts. You have to help me, Doc, everything hurts." The doctor gave him a complete examination. "Mr. Smith," he said, "I have good news and bad news for you. The good news is you are not dying. The bad news is you have a broken finger." CITATION: David Holdaway, Kincardinshire, Scotland KEYWORDS: Cause and Effect; Consequences; Discernment; Disease; Judgment; Pain; Self-Examination; Sickness; Spiritual Perception SCRIPTURE: Matthew 7:1-5; Luke 12:57; John 7:24; 1 Corinthians 2:12-16

permalink source: Anonymous
tags: Systems, Self-awareness

New York City writer William Adrian Milton, 59, and his doctor told reporters in January that his recent CAT scan revealed to his complete surprise that he had a bullet in his head. Searching his memory, Milton recalled a 1976 incident in which he wandered too close to a fight on a loading dock, heard a noise, and was knocked down. He said he staggered home bloody and went to bed, but failed to seek medical treatment because the bleeding soon stopped and the remaining lump was consistent with being hit by a brick. Milton said he'll leave the bullet there. [New York Post, 1-4-01]

permalink source: News of the Weird
tags: Self-awareness

Our friend Don Zimmer is back with his monthly installment on books. As you may remember, Don is a member of our Church Champions Editors Board and a long time friend. Unlike your truly, he reads deeply and remembers what he reads. He is my number one expert in finding a book for the topic to be addressed. This month he follows up his previous columns on leadership with a discussion on thinking styles and how they affect our conception of work and the church. "Some years ago, Bob Dale and George Bullard introduced me to a relatively new instrument called the Success Style Profile (SSP). The SSP provides an assessment of how we have learned to think. Over the next year I gave the instrument to several hundred leaders in the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod at the congregation and judicatory levels. Everywhere a clear, consistent pattern of thinking was present. I accepted the pattern as normal, after all, every organization has its culture and people are shaped by it. Later, as I gave the instrument to more people in more diverse settings other patterns emerged. Variations tended to cluster around organization forms and cultures, some were slight, some significant. I found myself asking what do these patterns mean for the processes that must occur within an organization for it to be responsive to changing environments? Heifetz spoke of "technical work" and "adaptive work", the former, work done to accomplish known tasks, the latter, work done toward the unknown. The observed patterns suggested each organization had a style that had evolved over time that enabled them to do the known "technical work." While each was successful in varying degrees, I found myself asking how can they do the "adaptive work" necessary to respond to rapid and profound change when some styles of thinking are clearly under-represented? It was a short intuitive step to the question, "How does thinking style relate to our spirituality, prayer forms, worship preferences, and theology?" I do not purpose to offer an answer, but I believe that there is clearly a link. Dr. Corinne Ware's book, Discover Your Spiritual Type and Kent Groff's, Active Spirituality (Alban Institute) together with my training as a Spiritual Director have helped organize and further shape my thinking around this question. The spiritual typology Dr. Ware's book contains offered me a way of relating spirituality, prayer form, worship preferences and theology to thinking style. The instruments provided a way of opening up a dialogue around the possible relationships. Methodologically, I walk folks through the SSP experience where I spend some time on brain body research then I invite them to take Dr. Ware's instrument. We post the results and talk about our observations. Several things have emerged from these sessions. First, people perceive how they express their spirituality as different from how they perceive their church body expressing its spirituality. Second, people are mixed in how they view that difference. For some their church provides a base from which they can explore while others see their church as unable to support the full range of their spiritual needs. Third, thinking style is potentially a major factor in much of what divides us as a the church and if we can name that perhaps we can reshape the dialogue among diverse church bodies and help further unbind the latent gifts present within the church. Over the years as our organizations have evolved, certain thinking styles, talents, and behaviors have dictated what goes on in churches and how it gets done. The "business model" is everywhere present. But what is good for business is not necessarily good for the church. If God intended us to be a "body" why is so much of the body excluded from the processes that shape much of the direction and focus of churches and judicatories? The answer lies in how we shape those processes and how we shape those processes is determined by the prevailing thinking style. In the early 1990s, I encountered Chuck Olsen's work that eventually became Transforming Church Boards and later Discerning God's Will Together (Both published by Alban Institute and the latter co authored with Danny Morris). Chuck offered a different model for church boards and committees. It is a model focused on consensus versus majority rule, on discernment rather than decision, on story more than data, on listening more than speaking. It was a model that values the "wholeness" of the body and the process of inclusion more than "efficiency". The people who tend to do well in contemporary church organization shape it, and as they do, others who do not do well self exclude themselves. The result is a process in which the body of Christ is disproportionately represented by certain thinking styles. Clearly there are many roles to be played within church organizations, and not everyone can do everything, but by defining our church organizational and governance practices as we have we have, we have systematically excluded the voices and gifts of many. If we sought to carry out church differently, could we involve more people from the body in discerning God's will, seeking to follow it, and in being better stewards of the enormous diversity of gifts that people have to offer? Part of the challenge we face in governing churches and judicatories is how we conceptualize church. When we conceptualize the church as an organization we tend to emphasize the structure and roles that define that organization. During the course of planning the program for a mid-level judicatory pastor's conference, I had the privilege of spending time with Loren Mead. He was just finishing Transforming Congregations for the Future (Alban Institute). When I read the book Chapters 2 and 3 really spoke to me. A short time later I was looking at a map of the German forces deployed across France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg just prior to the Normandy invasion. It hit me. The relevant issue is where forces are deployed not where they are based. The military commander focuses on the troops in the field not just the headquarters and bases that support them. What if we saw our church-selves as people rather than organizations and roles, scattered as well as gathered? What if we paid attention to enlisting, equipping, empowering, and enabling people to serve where they live their daily lives versus through congregation activities? Perhaps the most effective point for communicating the authentic gospel is in the contact that occurs in everyday life as people connect around pain, needs, and shared interests, activities and experiences. Is our often-myopic view of church yet another product of the thinking styles that define our organizational structure and practices?" You can send Don some direct feedback at DonaldZ7@aol.com. He will appreciate your comments and dialog. Don has agreed to be a moderator at one of our November Team Forums focused on lay persons.

permalink source: Church Champions Update, Mar 10 2001
tags: Paradigms, Self-awareness

A LEADER'S EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE ''Without it (emotional intelligence) a person can have the best training in the world, an incisive analytical mind and an endless supply of smart ideas but he still won't make a great leader." - Daniel Goleman (Harvard Business Review, Nov-Dec 1998) What is the "must have" characteristic of highly effective leaders? That is a question that would stir quite a bit of debate in most leadership circles. One idea that I would not expect to hear is that of emotional intelligence. At lower levels of leadership the issues of ability, intelligence, training and experience play a major role in distinguishing good leaders from very good leaders. But the higher you move up the leadership ladder, the less these threshold components - ability, intelligence, train- ing, experience - matter in terms of separating the good from the great. Think of professional athletes for example. When they play- ed at the high school level, many pro athletes were head and shoulders above everyone else in their league, let alone their team. But when they got to college, the difference between them and other players was somewhat diminished. By the time they get to the pros, the difference is even less noticeable. The same is true for leaders. At the highest levels of leader- ship, the distinguishing factor, which separates good leaders from great leaders, is not primarily their training or IQ but - according to Daniel Goleman - their emotional intelli- gence. Evaluating Emotional Intelligence Goleman studied research on the competency models of 188 different companies ranging from Lucent Technologies to British Airways. The research evaluated the competency of leaders based on cognitive skills (analytical thinking, big picture perspective), technical skills (accounting, systems) and emotional intelligence (working with others, managing change). It was through this study that he con- cluded emotional intelligence is twice as important as other factors and its relevance increased proportionately with movement up the leadership ladder. Those in the study with higher levels of emotional intelligence out produced others both inside and outside the United States. (In other words, they believe this research is not culture-bound.) Five Components of Emotional Intelligence Goleman suggests there are five basic components of Emotional Intelligence as follows: 1. Self-Awareness - Leaders with emotional intelligence know who they are, where they are going and why. They have a deep understanding of their emotions, strengths, weakness- es, needs and drives. They are honest with themselves. They make decisions that are consistent with their values. They set goals - short-term and long - that flow from who they are and where they want to go. They operate with candor and are willing to admit failure. They receive constructive criticism and willingly ask for help. Implications for Christian leaders: Leaders with emotional intelligence are making progress in destiny processing. They are refining an explicit philosophy of leadership (ministry), which empowers their decision-making. They have a learning posture, which fuels a teachable spirit. Want to be a great leader? How are you doing in the area of destiny processing? Refining your ministry philosophy? Personal growth? 2. Self-Regulation - Leaders with emotional intelligence are in control of their feelings and impulses. They have mastered their emotions to the extent that they are able to deal with the unpredictable or even disastrous circumstances of life on an even keel. They radiate an environment of trust, safety and loyalty. Their followers are not afraid to be the one to bring bad news. They are thoughtful and reflective enough to navigate the moguls of life in proper balance. Implications for Christian leaders: Leaders who want to be effective at the highest levels of Christian leadership are passionate about allowing the fruits of the Holy Spirit - in- cluding patience and self-control - to be seen in their daily activities. Want to be a great leader? How would your followers (including your family) rate you when it comes to self-control? How about patience? 3. Motivation - Leaders with emotional intelligence have an inner drive to go beyond the minimum expectations of others. They have a desire to improve, to do things better. They want to keep score so as to be able to measure growth or improvement. They have a buy in to the organization, which expresses itself in loyalty to the cause. Implications for Christian leaders: Christian leaders need a passion that expresses itself in a sense of responsibility. Passion can cover a multitude of sins when it comes to the lack of ability or training. I have seen very average communicators take the house down purely based on the fact they were passionate about what they said and communicated a sense of personal responsibility for the cause. Want to be a great leader? When was the last time you cried over the cause? Is your passion meter stuck on "whatever"? 4. Empathy - Leaders with emotional intelligence thoughtfully consider the feelings of followers in the process of making decisions. They are not governed by this empathy so as to keep them from making the tough call. But they recognize they are dealing with people and that actions have consequences. They go beyond trite statements like, "Deal with it" or "Get over it" when helping followers process change. This kind of empathy is critical in an environment where teams bring with them complex relationships and globalization requires cross-cultural communi- cation. Effective mentoring and coaching on the job grows out of the strength of relationship, which is enhanced by empathetic interaction. Implications for Christian leaders: What Goleman describes as empathy could easily be viewed as servant leadership. Effective Christian leaders realize the most preferred power base is spi- ritual authority, which flows from strength of character and servant attitudes. Want to be a great leader? Try living the golden rule. What is your default power base setting? 5. Social Skills - Leaders with emotional intelligence are purposefully friendly. They are not necessarily sanguine in their personality type. But they are intentional about culti- vating interpersonal communication skills. They have an "others" focus that makes it easy to carry on a conversation. They readily seek common ground and ask sincere questions. Social skills in this context are really a combination of other aspects of emotional intelligence. These skills emerge as the components of emotional intelligence are put to work synergistic- ally in real life. Implications for Christian Leaders: The social skills Goleman describes have a common root in listening. Being a good listener is not always at the top of the priority list of high-energy leaders. Many times as leaders we are busy forming our rebuttal statement after the first three words have been spoken to us. Want to be a great leader? Cultivate good listening habits. Be quick to listen and slow to speak. Final Comments Let me take you back to the opening thoughts in this article. What is the "must have" characteristic of highly effective leaders? If you were in a room with all the other Leadership Minute subscribers and that question was asked, I predict none of us would have ans- wered emotional intelligence. And as a result, few of the practical application comments flowing from this article would have been on our short list of action steps. Review them for a minute. Should they be? 1. Want to be a great leader? How are you doing in the area of destiny processing? Refining your ministry philosophy? Personal Growth? 2. Want to be a great leader? How would your followers (including your family) rate you when it comes to self-control? How about patience? 3. Want to be a great leader? When was the last time you cried over the cause? Is your passion meter stuck on "whatever"? 4. Want to be a great leader? Try living the golden rule. What is your default power base setting? 5. Want to be a great leader? Cultivate good listening habits. Be quick to listen and slow to speak. Assessment and Action 1. Do you agree with Daniel Goleman's assertion that emotional intelligence is the most important distinguishing factor between high-level leaders? 2. Can you think of a high-level leader who is/was very success- ful but did not have emotional intelligence? If yes, who? Did they succeed because of this lack of emotional intelligence or in spite of it? 3. What component of emotional intelligence is least valued by traditional leadership paradigms? 4. Rate yourself on a scale of 1-20 in each component of emo- tional intelligence. Then total your score for each area - a perfect score would total 100. 5. Based on your answer to #4, which component of emotional intelligence do you most need to develop? Steve Moore - Global Leadership Consultant, Top Flight Leadership

permalink source: Steve Moore in Leadership Minute from Top Flight Leadership
tags: Leadership, Emotions, Self-awareness

If we see a speck in a brother's eye, we must first see if there is a log in our own eye; perhaps that speck in our brother's eye is only a reflection of the beam in our own.

permalink source: David Watson
tags: Judging, Self-awareness

To say of an act done, "My conscience is quite clear", sounds smug and satisfactory. It does not by any means follow that the speaker's conscience ought to be clear. It may simply show that [it] is sadly unenlightened.

permalink source: Bishop G. E. Reindorp
tags: Guilt, Sin, Conscience, Self-awareness

NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS YOU CAN KEEP Are you sick of making the same resolutions year after year that you never keep? Why not promise to do something you can actually accomplish? Here are some resolutions that you can use as a starting point: ~ Gain weight. At least 30 pounds. ~ Stop exercising. Waste of time. ~ Read less. Makes you think. ~ Watch more TV. I've been missing some good stuff. ~ Procrastinate more. Starting tomorrow. ~ Spend more time at work, surfing with the T1. ~ Take a vacation to someplace important, like to see the world's largest ball of twine. ~ Don't jump off a cliff just because everyone else did. ~ Stop bringing lunch from home--eat out more. ~ Don't have eight children at once. ~ Get in a whole NEW rut! ~ Start being superstitious. ~ Personal goal: Don't bring back disco. ~ Don't box with Mike Tyson. ~ Buy an '83 Eldorado and invest in a really loud stereo system. Get the windows tinted. Buy some fur for the dash. ~ Speak in a monotone voice and only use monosyllabic words. ~ Only wear jeans that are 2 sizes too small and use a chain or rope for a belt. ~ Spend my summer vacation in cyberspace. ~ Don't eat cloned meat. ~ Create loose ends. ~ Get more toys. ~ Get further in debt. ~ Don't believe politicians. ~ Break at least one traffic law. ~ Don't drive a motorized vehicle across thin ice. ~ Don't swim with piranhas or sharks. ~ Associate with even worse business clients. ~ Spread out priorities beyond the ability to keep track of them. ~ Wait for opportunity to knock. ~ Focus on the faults of others. ~ Mope about faults. ~ Never make New Year's resolutions again.

permalink source: Anonymous
tags: Goals, Self-awareness, Personal Growth

SOME PEOPLE ARE LIKE POTATOES 1. Some people are very bossy and like to tell everyone what to do, but of course they do not wish to soil their hands. You might call that type "Dick Tater." 2. Some people never seem to be motivated to participate. They are content to watch while others do. They are "Speck Taters." 3. Some people never do anything to help, but they are gifted at finding fault with the way others do things. They might be called "Comment Taters." 4. Some people are always looking for ways to cause problems. They look or others to agree with them. You call them "Aggie Taters." 5. Then there are those who always say they will, but somehow never get around to, doing anything. They are "Hezzie Taters." 6. Some people put on a front and act like they are someone they are not. They are "Emma Taters." 7. Still, there are those who live what they talk. They are always prepared to stop what they are doing to lend a hand. They bring real sunshine into others' lives. You might call them "Sweet Taters."

permalink source: Anonymous
tags: Personality, Self-awareness

A person is always startled when he hears himself seriously called an old man for the first time.

permalink source: Oliver W. Holmes, Sr., 1806-1894
tags: Age, Self-awareness

In the midst of great joy, do not promise anyone anything. In the midst of great anger, do not answer anyone’s letter.

permalink source: Chinese Proverb
tags: Discipline, Happiness, Anger, Self-awareness

Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be, since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be.

permalink source: Thomas a Kempis
tags: Grace, Anger, Judging, Self-awareness

Life is not long, and too much of it must not pass in idle deliberation how it shall be spent.

permalink source: Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1709-1784
tags: Time Management, Self-awareness

To measure up to all that is demanded of him, a man must overestimate his capacities.

permalink source: Johann von Goethe, 1749-1834
tags: Courage, Self-awareness, Confidence

Life is like playing the violin solo in public and learning the instrument as one goes along.

permalink source: Samuel Butler, 1835-1902
tags: Experience, Learning, Self-awareness, Maturity

A whale is as unique as a cactus. But don’t ask a whale to survive Death Valley. We all have special gifts. Where we use them and how determines whether we actually complete something. -- Max DePree (Leadership is an Art, p. 145)

permalink source: Anonymous
tags: Self-awareness, Purpose

First and foremost, find out what it is you’re about, and be that. Be what you are and don’t lost it... It’s very hard to be who we are, because it doesn’t seem to be what anyone wants. -- Norman Lear

permalink source: Anonymous
tags: Self-awareness, Purpose

It is not possible to fight beyond your strength, even if you strive. – Homer, Iliad, 700 B.C.

permalink source: Anonymous
tags: Self-awareness, Personal Growth

He that respects himself is safe from others; he wears a coat of mail that none can pierce.

permalink source: Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
tags: Character, Conscience, Self-awareness

To see ourselves as others see us is a most salutary gift. Hardly less important is the capacity to see others as they see themselves.

permalink source: Aldous Huxley
tags: Affirmation, Self-awareness, Compassion

Knowing your own strength is a fine thing. Recognizing your own weakness is even better. What is really bad, what hurts and finally defeats us, is mistaking a weakness for a strength.

permalink source: Sydney J. Harris
tags: Self-awareness, Personal Growth

Our greatness and wretchedness are so evident that the true religion must necessarily teach us that there is in us some great principle of greatness and some great principle of wretchedness. It must also account for such amazing contradictions. To make us happy it must show us that a God exists whom we are bound to love; that our only true bliss is to be in him, and our sole ill to be cut off from him. It must acknowledge that we are full of darkness which prevents us from knowing him, and so, with our duty obliging us to love God and our sin leading us astray, we are fully unrighteous. It must account to us for the way in which we thus go against God and our own good. It must teach us the cure for our helplessness and the means for obtaining the cure.

permalink source: Blaise Pascal, the Pensees
tags: Apologetics, Humans, Self-awareness

It is men’s ignorance of themselves that makes prayer little in request: Hunger best teaches men to beg. You would be oftener on your knees, if you were oftener in your hearts. Prayer would not seem so needless, if you knew your needs. Know your needs, and be prayerless if you can. Françios Fénalon

permalink source: Anonymous
tags: Prayer, Self-awareness

We exist on at least three levels: there is the person as he or she appears in public; the person as he or she is known to intimates, which include family and dear friends; and that person--deepest of all--who is known only to him- or herself, where all the aspirations, resentments, fantasies, desires, and much else that is not ready for public knowledge reside. At this last level, where envy also resides, the wattage tends to be kept low, making self-knowledge not all that clear and the law of contradictions carries no authority whatsoever.

permalink source: Joseph Epstein, Envy p 15
tags: Self-awareness

More than once I have been told: "If you want to succeed with me, severity is no use. You will get nowhere unless you are gentle." But I know that no one is a good judge in his own case.

permalink source: St. Thérèse of Lisieux
tags: Self-awareness, Spiritual Formation

It's a control freak thing. I wouldn't let you understand.

permalink source: Stacey Yuen
tags: Personality, Self-awareness

Another illustration of our lack of self-knowledge comes from a study in which researches asked a group of college students to choose a series of snacks. Each week they had a three-hour seminar with one break that allowed participants to stretch their legs, use the bathroom, clear their heads, and have something to eat. When the professor asked the students to pick a snack for each of the next three weeks, the students picked a variety, thinking they'd get tired of the same snack each week. In contrast, another group in the same study got to choose their snack every week, and tehse students, choosing one week at a time, tended to choose the same thing each week. These two sets of participants were faced with different tasks. The students who were choosing one snack at a time simply had to ask themselves what they felt like eating at the moment. Those who were choosing for three weeks had to <i>predict</i> what they would feel like eating two or three weeks from the moment of choice.

permalink source: The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less, by Barry Schwartz, 51
tags: Choices, Planning, Self-awareness

We probably like to think that we're too smart to be seduced by such "branding," but we aren't. If you ask test participants in a study to explain their preferences in music or art, they'll come up with some account based on the qualities of the pieces themselves. Yet several studies have demonstrated that "familiarity breeds liking." If you play snippets of music for people or show them slides of paintings and vary the number of times they hear or see the music and the art, on the whole people will rate the familiar things more positively than the unfamiliar ones. The people doing the ratings don't know that they like one bit of music more than another <i>because</i> it's more familiar. Nonetheless, when products are essentially equivalent, people go with what's familiar, even if it's only familiar because they know its name from advertising.

permalink source: The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less, by Barry Schwartz, 54
tags: Advertising, Art, Marketing, Self-awareness, Music

God is infinite while we are finite. We can never fully comprehend the infinite, but we do have within us a spiritual sense that allows us to recognize and enjoy God's presence. The ocean is vast beyond our imagining, and it would never be possible for a person to fathom it or take in all its great treasures. But with the tips of our tongues we can recognize at once that the ocean is salty. We have not understood even a fraction of all there is to know about about the ocean, but with our sense of taste we can experience its essence. In the end, how can we expect to have full knowledge of the creator, when even our knowledge of created things is limited? We know a little about the physical characteristics of the created world, but we know next to nothing about the unseen spiritual world. Indeed, we know next to nothing about our own spiritual lives. If we had complete knowledge of our own spiritual nature, then perhaps we would be capable of knowing the nature of God, for we were created in his image.

permalink source: Sadhu Sundar Sing, Wisdom of the Sadhu, 57-58
tags: Apologetics, Worship, Self-awareness

Many people are immersed in sin and don't even notice its great weight - just like a diver may be covered by tons of water without feeling its load. But if when the diver emerges from the water he tries to carry even a small bucket full, he will feel how heavy it is.

permalink source: Sundar Singh, The Wisdom of the Sadhu, 84
tags: Sin, Self-awareness

Adam was lonely and God took Eve out of Adam to solve his problem. So we see that God has given us everything we need in ourselves - we just need His help to find it. {paraphrased}

permalink source: Coach Jerry Baldwin, The Uprising, 12/31/2006
tags: Loneliness, Self-awareness, Personal Growth

We Best See Ourselves Through The Eyes of Others

And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all. –1 Thessalonians 5:14 This is one of my favorite passages. It helps us see there are people in our midst who are idle, some who are fainthearted and others who are weak. A wise minister/counselor will use a different tool for each person. .... When someone is set in their ways and living in active rebellion you don’t coddle them with a message of grace and Jesus loves you. You admonish them. But at the same time you don’t admonish the faint-hearted. As one person has said, “Wisdom dictated that they should not ‘warn the weak’ nor ‘encourage the idle’”. Instead we are to “encourage the faint-hearted”. ... We don’t see things correctly. The idle often think they’re weak. The faint-hearted rebuke themselves for idleness. We need another set of loving eyes to come alongside us and properly apply the gospel. And for that you need a local church. And for that to actually “work” and matter and do what it’s supposed to do—you need to pursue being known and to know others.

permalink source: WHY YOUR ONLINE “CHURCH” ISN’T ENOUGH, DECEMBER 17, 2018, MIKE LEAKE, http://www.mikeleake.net/2018/12/why-your-online-church-isnt-enough.html
tags: Church, Wisdom, Counseling, Community, Self-awareness