I have shared with you in the past people who have made a mark in my life over the years, my Mother, the late Mr. Mark Fried, the late Roger Poston, Thomasa Burton, Steven Gaffney, and of course, God. In the past 2 years, I have added to that list Alan Weiss, Ph.D. I am forever a student of life and always looking to learn from others and acquire more knowledge to make me a better person, especially from those who are wiser, more experienced, and more successful than I. Alan has published over 40 books related to business and life (while am only working on my first). He is also living his dream life doing what he loves with his long time beloved wife Maria, whom I absolutely adore. Below are some words of wisdom I took from one of Alan’s latest Newsletters that I would like to share with you.
1. Address it or forget it. If you feel you need to vent or react, then write the letter, make the call, confront. But if you don’t, then move on. Otherwise, you’re perpetually irritated with no relief. (I am a big believer of this proactive honest and open communication which is why every one of my staff has to go through Steven Gaffney’s Honest Communication Bootcamp as one of the requirements of working for me. When you have open and honest communication in any relationship, trust is stronger and people are happier and more productive.)
2. If you want to improve the quality of your life, learn to say “No” and understand that you don’t need to justify that response. (I am guilty of this. I love taking on things that others find a challenge or do not want to do. I love being the go-to person, the hero, the savior, whatever you call it. I am now learning in my 40’s that I cannot do it all and please everyone. So learning to step back and say no has been a journey for me in the past year, and believe me, I have surprised some people in my life.) 🙂
3. The only way to deal with passive-aggressive behavior (“You went to Barbados? I assume you couldn’t get to your first choice?”) is to confront it: “Why would you say something so hurtful?” When you ignore it, you enable it. (Exactly. If you want more tips on handling these personalities, email me and I will give you some more suggestions.)
4. When someone nearby chimes in to a conversation I’m having with someone else, offering their unasked opinion, I merely say, “I’m sorry, I wasn’t speaking to you.” (One of the things I love about Alan is his bluntness. I know not everyone likes that, but for me, I rather know where I stand with a person.)
5. Of all the gender issues, the one that no one talks about that I find insulting is this: EVERY TV female reporter, anchor, meteorologist, and traffic reporter ALL look exactly alike: a pound of makeup, hair done to within an inch of their lives, done up like donuts. They allow themselves to resemble Stepford Wives. (This is hilarious and is so true. I wish they would have more of their own personal style that look a lot more approachable and real.)
6. Your kids should be loved and supported. They should not be calling the shots. (Knowing my creative self, I absolutely support this statement. If my parents did not groom me and set boundaries while I was growing up, I think I would be a wild, mad, unfocused, undisciplined, and uncontrollable person right now…lol)
7. I love the food stores and shopping services that deliver (Peapod). Why would anyone put up with 40 aisles, 60 checkout lanes, and hundreds of people looking for just the right jar of mustard? (This is why I love Trader Joe’s and farmer’s markets.)
Hope you like the above. I will be attending Alan’s Thought Leadership this fall where James Carville will be one of the main speakers. I am very much looking forward to it.
Reprinted with permission from Alan Weiss, Balancing Act: The Newsletter (No. 175, March 2014), Copyright 2014