Monthly Archives: December 2013

#208 – On the Cusp of New Beginnings

Thank you so much for the many wonderful replies I received in response to my announcement that I am transitioning from writing a weekly Tuesday Minute with Mary to writing on an occasional basis. It was very heartwarming to read your comments about this change and what my Tuesday Minutes have meant to you – thank you! After four years, this will be my last weekly Tuesday Minute. Starting in 2014, I will be writing An Occasional Tuesday Minute with Mary, with no predetermined schedule, just whenever the inspiration appears!

As I mentioned, I am closing this particular chapter of my work in order to see what the next chapter may be. It’s always challenging to end something, especially if it’s going well, but I am confident that there are undiscovered opportunities that will become evident once a vacuum is created. I recently came across a wonderful quote by Morihei Ueshiba, the founder of Aikido. It relates beautifully to this idea of a new beginning; and it’s a lovely thought to start out the new year.

“Your heart is full of fertile seeds, waiting to sprout.”

Food for Thought ~

Periodically evaluating our activities and priorities is a useful exercise to have in our repertoire. Once we have completed the evaluation process, we can then decide if there are things we may want or need to stop doing, as well as to start doing. The turning of the calendar year is an opportune time, but of course, we can do this anytime. A new beginning is a time of discovery and growth, revelation and change. Yes, it can be uncomfortable and a bit scary, but it’s also liberating and exciting.

Question for the day ~

Is there something you might wish to let go of at this time? Is there an ending that’s called for? Is there an important New Beginning that could emerge if you were to give it time and space? What fertile seeds may be in your heart, waiting to sprout?

Mary

#205 – Acknowledging a Great Leader

Last week’s post addressed the subject of acknowledgement. The recent death of Nelson Mandela is an opportunity to acknowledge a truly great leader whose life and accomplishments will have lasting meaning and impact. Nelson Mandela is a wonderful role model for leaders everywhere. He was confident without being arrogant. He was intelligent, strong, and courageous. He conducted himself with integrity, dignity and grace. He was charismatic and optimistic, an inspirational representative of determination. His vision and resolve were immutable. I admired him greatly, and consider him to be one of the greatest leaders of our time. In addition to his intelligence and skill, Mandela was also wise, and his insights are often quoted. Here is one of my favorites.

Food for Thought ~

“I am fundamentally an optimist. Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed towards the sun, one’s feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lies defeat and death.”
Nelson Mandela

Question for the day ~

How might Nelson Mandela be a role model for you?

~ Another Mandela Quote ~

“A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination.”

In memoriam, Nelson Mandela, 1918 – 2013.

Mary

#204 – Insightful Acknowledgement

This is the third in a series devoted to the different types of positive communication. A good leader uses all of these regularly and frequently. We started with encouragement, and then addressed appreciation. This week the theme is acknowledgement.

Food for Thought ~

This type of communication is somewhat more complicated and subtle than the previous two. It requires slowing down enough to look beneath the surface of a situation and see the underlying motivations. This requires awareness, empathy and insight on the part of the leader. Generally speaking, an acknowledgement recognizes a person’s values, their ethics, their principles. Regardless of the manifestation of those values, whether the outcome is success or failure, the motivation underlying the behavior is what deserves to be acknowledged. A thoughtful and accurate acknowledgement can be a very meaningful, perhaps even profound, way to honor and appreciate someone. When you have done this well, an insightful acknowledgement is a gift that will long be remembered.

Question for the day ~

Have you honed your skills at acknowledgement?

A Footnote ~

As with the two previous types of positive communication, it is very instructive to recall our own experiences in order to remember how important these seemingly simple communications can be. If you have been the recipient of an insightful acknowledgement, you hopefully recall its power and meaning. If not, you may be aware of a time when its absence was noteworthy.

Mary