Tuesday, July 04, 2006

I love you! I hate you!

Immature love is loving someone for what they do right;
Mature love is loving someone in spite of what they do wrong.

In the thought provoking July 3, 2006 Los Angeles Times article "I Love You! I Hate You!" Marianne Szegedy-Maszak describes research that essentially says the lower your self-esteem, the more difficult it is for you to accept that people in your life have both good and bad attributes. Instead you see people as all good or all bad. The higher your self-esteem, the more you are able to see people as "whole" having both good and bad attributes. Some of the other measures of high self-esteem are listed below:

The Top 10 Measures of Self-Esteem
Self-esteem should not be confused with self-confidence -- self-confidence is believing in your competence, whereas self-esteem is believing in your worthiness. You build self-esteem the old fashioned way, you e-a-r-n it -- through dedication, effort, and sacrifice.

When you have developed it, your reward is to feel whole and satisfied. You show your gratitude not only by giving generously back to the world, but by being gracious in victory and graceful in defeat. Self-esteem is crucial to how much or how little contentment you feel at the end of your life.

1. How much you do to raise and DON'T do to lower the self-esteem of others.

2. How long you sustain an effort outside of your comfort zone to help the common good.

3. How full an effort you give to a fair decision that you disagree with.

4. How easily you ask for help or assistance.

5. How quickly and sincerely you thank someone who has helped you.

6. How quickly you offer help without the other person having to ask for it.

7. How fully you forgive and forget after you've been hurt and how quickly you move on.

8. How quickly you recognize and earnestly you apologize for your failures of commission or omission.

9. How enthusiastically you congratulate someone else on an achievement or good fortune.

10. How much more you give to the world than you take from it.

© 2003 Mark Goulston, couplescompany.com

Subscribe to Dr. Mark's Usable Insight mailing list.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Be Different or Pay the Price

If you don't distinguish yourself from your competitors, your clients and customers will treat you like a commodity, marginalize you, and make decisions about your services and products based on price rather than value or loyalty.

The best way to distinguish yourself is to listen to what your clients and customers most want to accomplish (and in many cases you may need to help them define what that that is) and then help them to do it.

My friend Bruce Wright, founder of Macro Strategic Design suggests people watch the movie Groundhog Day to see how to do that. Wright explains that the movie is superficially about an obnoxious Bill Murray trying to have sex with Andie MacDowell and throughout the movie he keeps waking up to find it's Groundhog Day. The more important story and lesson is that Murray also discovers what Andie MacDowell really wants in a boyfriend. When he becomes that person, she bids and wins him in an auction in one of the closing scenes, because he has become what she wanted. What makes it a terrific movie (in the Frank Capra sense) is that he also discovers that what she wants turns out to be what he actually wants to become, i.e. a generous and caring person.