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Tagged with 'optimism'

What Are the Most Important Lessons You’ve Learned in Life?

  There’s a quick and easy question! How would you answer it? Life lessons are one of 52 questions I’ve been asked weekly since my last birthday almost a year ago. That’s when our daughter, Jen, gifted me a subscription to Storyworth. The service is designed for older family members to answer a weekly question […]

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Earth Tones: We Need a Climate Change of Hope and Optimism

  “We are on a highway to climate hell with our foot still on the accelerator,” said United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres at an international climate negotiations conference.   “A recent global survey asked 100,000 16- to 20-year-olds about their attitudes to climate change. More than three-quarters thought the future was frightening, and more than […]

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Protective Perspective: Don’t Be a Victim of the Doomsters Divers

How’s the world doing? Are we heading in the right direction? Should we look to this new year with dread or hope? How do you answer these questions: Is morality in decline? Are people less kind, less honest, and less good? Do we need to make America/Canada/The World great again? Are rates of violent/property crimes […]

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For the L of It: Living and Leading Above the Line

Too many appointed leaders sit on the line and wait rather than taking the initiative and stepping up to make things happen. They follow someone else’s lead. Some slip down below the line and wallow in hopelessness and pessimism — which they’ll often call “being realistic.” They may be called “leaders” by their position. But […]

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Quotes to Note from Superabundance

Last week’s review of Superabundance: The Story of Population Growth, Innovation, and Human Flourishing on an Infinitely Bountiful Planet generated a good LinkedIn discussion in The Letter Leader. Paul Born’s comment on Canada’s significant reduction in poverty rates is a great example of the progress documented in Superabundance. Here are a few quotes of note […]

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For Better or Worse: How’s the World Doing?

As we look at a new year ahead, what do you think is the state of our world? Are we living in the best of times or the worst of times? Are these statements true or false? The poor are getting poorer as the rich get richer US carbon emissions are rising Home ownership is […]

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I Exam: Negative Nuggets of Pessimism or Positive Points of Optimism?

In the Shakespearean tragedy titled after the main character, Hamlet ponders his imprisonment by Denmark and the King as well as in his own mind when he says, “There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” In my previous post in this series of posts on the nature of “reality,” we […]

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Are You Wearing C.R.A.P Glasses?

A few years ago, I ran into an old acquaintance I hadn’t seen for a while. Our short conversation confirmed just why I hadn’t seen him — and wouldn’t again soon if I could help it! I started off with, “Hey Phil. How’s it going?” His response was, “Oh, you know; same crap, different day.” […]

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War, Pandemic, Inflation, Climate, Politics, …Let’s Not Lose Perspective

Which dot is bigger? It looks like the right dot is quite a bit larger than the other one. But they are the same size. Go ahead, measure them. The framing around each dot changes our perception of its size. When hanging a painting on your wall, the size and color of the frame or […]

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Antidotes for the Pessimism Plague

New Year, new newsletter! Since LinkedIn has become such a widely used professional network (nearly 800 million members), we’ve moved The Leader Letter to LinkedIn’s Newsletter platform. The Leader Letter will now become a “try-weekly” — I’ll try to post a weekly article. Each issue will focus on one of the personal, team, or leadership/organization […]

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What’s The Word and The Force of Your Leadership?

I’ve loved the Beatles for decades. Saturday has been Beatles Day at our house for many years. A big reason I subscribe to Sirius radio is because of Channel 18 — The Beatles channel. Our son, Chris, is now a Beatles fan after all those years of relentless exposure to their music. There are many […]

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Despite Our Incredibly Tough Times, Our World’s Still Getting Better and Better

I kicked off 2020 with my sixth annual post on how our world keeps getting dramatically and relentlessly better and better and better. As in the five years before that, Lose those News Blues and Leave the Dark Side: The World’s Never Been Better, listed over 30 major improvements and 24 sources for further reading. […]

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2020 Hindsight: Soaring or Sinking on the Winds of Change?

What a year!! 2020 is almost over… Like many of us, you’re likely going to stay up on New Year’s Eve just to make sure that old man 2020 is kicked out by a youthful and more hopeful 2021. These holidays will be different — and very memorable! Hopefully, you’ll have some time to pull […]

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Thoughts That Make You Go Hmmm on…Humankind

A few favorite excerpts (so many to choose from) of my review of Rutger Bregman’s Humankind: A Hopeful History. …to stand up for human goodness is to take a stand against the powers that be. For the powerful, a hopeful view of human nature is downright threatening. Subversive. Seditious. It implies that we’re not selfish […]

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Review of Humankind: A Hopeful History

How many of these assumptions describe the reality of humankind: Corruption and cruelty lie just beneath the surface and can easily be pulled out of people. Civility is a thin veneer covering people’s selfish, sometimes evil tendencies. Laws and punishments are needed to curb dishonesty and violence. We’re all born into a world of sin […]

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We Can’t Let the Pessimism Plague Infect Us As Well

Wouldn’t it be nice if we all woke up this morning and the Coronavirus pandemic was a big April Fool’s joke? Unfortunately, it’s not and won’t go away soon. But it will go away. In 1848 William Blackwood wrote in Blackwood Edinburgh Magazine, “When an Eastern sage was desired by his sultan to inscribe on […]

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Coronavirus Crisis: Reasons for Hope During These Dark Times

As Heather and I work from, and stay home, to be part of the solution, I found myself gorging on way too much negative news. As my sleep and mood deteriorated, I went looking for an antidote to the pessimism plague. I began a search for reasons to be optimistic. One of the first articles […]

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Thoughts That Make You Go Hmmm on…Hacking Our Pessimistic Neuro Programing

These comments and excerpts come from my last two blogs on Lose Those News Blues and Leave the Dark Side: The World’s Never Been Better and Don’t Start the New Year Losing Touch With Reality “In Christian tradition, the four horsemen of Famine, Pestilence, War, and Death usher in the apocalypse. Compared to 100 years […]

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Don’t Start the New Year Losing Touch With Reality

What if you invited me into your house and I sprayed a noxious gas that made you and your family sick? What if I also dumped a big barrel of stinking sewage on your kitchen floor? You’d likely have me arrested. You’d get out of the house until the mess is cleaned up and the […]

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A Bigger Perspective to Avoid the Blues

A few years ago, I facilitated a workshop with managers struggling to stay positive during a very difficult time. We discussed the choice we all have: either we can focus on a problem and let it overwhelm us, or we can keep things in perspective and re-frame what’s wrong within the much larger frame of […]

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