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Our 2020 New Year’s Resolutions (B)

I resolve to be even more accepting of and tolerant with people with differing personalities, traits and characteristics, personal styles, individual values and beliefs, and for their idiosyncrasies. I will also work at better managing fluctuations in people’s moods, points of view, and interests.

I resolve that especially with friends, co-workers and family, I will always assume that they will succeed, assume that they will do things correctly, assume that they will give everything they do their best effort. I’m surprised when other people make mistakes, give things less than their best effort, don’t succeed. Since I expect success, I’ll take on some degree of personal responsibility for mistakes of others, lackluster effort, non-success. My first take on the situation is that I haven’t been smart enough or skilled enough to effectuate the right outcome. For that reason, I’ll work with the person to identify the deficiencies. When possible, I’ll modify my performance so that I can facilitate the other person’s success.

I resolve to try harder to accept people as is. My goal isn’t to change anyone. Rather, I’ll make the effort to focus on encouraging and facilitating in ways that enable each person to achieve optimal performance within the context of their skills, abilities, and interests. Concurrently, I expect people to expand and improve their capacities and am ready to help with that process however I can. I don’t expect People to change but expect them to grow and develop.

I resolve to do a better job with remembering to praise my children, friends and family when they do well. I’ll take care not to praise too little but also will try to avoid making it seem like little more than a polite habit. I won’t be stingy with praise nor be excessive with it. I’ll be quick to recognize and acknowledge the successes and accomplishments of others but won’t confuse praise with simple good manners. Please and thank you and noting that someone did a good job or was helpful are not examples of praise. They are rather, merely examples of good manners and are just part of my habitual deportment. Alternatively, praise is an intentional and thoughtful action which privately or publicly acknowledges and commends excellence. I reserve praise for exceptional or extraordinary performance, never missing an opportunity to praise when anyone meets that standard.

I resolve to resist the temptation to either focus on what is not going well or on what is. It may be a function of human nature to attend mostly to the negative or to the positive, depending on one’s personality; but I’ll keep in mind that this is not a simple matter of choice or personal preference. The key to my success is seeing that neither focusing on the positive nor on the negative is advisable. Here’s the perspective I’ll always try to keep in mind. The reality is that things are continuously transitioning from a past state to a future state. My primary responsibility is to affect the transition so as to actualize the desired future state. To do this, the task is to reduce and eliminate the disparity between the present and future states, without redefining or compromising the desired future state. My focus then needs to be on the cluster of elements that affect the future state either as contributors or as detractors, understanding that neither is more or less important than the other. Focus must be on the gestalt. In short, I’ll be keeping my eye on the big picture, on the way on down the road.

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Featured Tidbits (The title link takes you to the podcast’s page.)

54 min. of Happy Background

Do well, Be well and enjoy.

The Witch In The Box

In what I think was probably the most recent episode of Benjamen Walker's Theory of Everything podcast, Mr. Walker featured an artificial intelligence (AI) expert from Google. The Google guy was discussing what sounds like an AI game for geeks. In this scenario, the geeks are themselves artificial intelligence entities. Think of them as computer one and computer two. Computer one’s gig is to create realistic scenes indistinguishable from reality. Think of them as mind pictures. Also keep in mind that these scenes are completely computer generated. They are fully a product of artificial intelligence, ones and zeros supported by algorithms. Once the button is pushed, there is no additional human intervention. For computer two, the gig is reality detection. Along with IA scenes from computer one, computer two is shown scenes captured from actual reality. The challenge for computer two is to tell which scenes are artificial and which are actual, which are fake and which are real. Think of computer two as a lie detector of sorts. … It does not seem like much of a stretch to believe the Google guy when he suggests that computer one (the AI box) has progressed further than computer two (the lie detector). Computer one can produce artificial reality virtually indistinguishable from the real world. Not only can computer one fool computer two, it does a fair job of deceiving computer two’s keepers as well. It is pretty clear that it is no longer true that a picture is worth a thousand words, if it ever was true. At least it is not as true as it used to be. This would be little more than an interesting story from Google land if that were where the story ends but it isn’t. The AI box is far from finished just because…

Want To Be A Foster Parent?

Being a foster parent can be a delightful and satisfying adventure and will definitely be a difficult challenge that requires your full attention and patience. Even so and if your heart is truly into the adventure, it can be wonderful for both you and your foster child. There are many aspects to being a foster parent; but for now, let's think a while together about a few of the behavior and adjustment concerns that may develop while the child is with you. Your foster child comes to your home with her strong points and special problems. It is hard for any child to adjust to a new family; but for your foster child, it is extra tough. If her past family experiences had been positive and healthy, being her foster parent would be fairly easy. Loving her and giving her a chance to live in your home would be enough. It is sad but true that love and a good home are not enough for her. Your foster child is with you because she (or he) could not stay where she was. Maybe she was abused. She may have been neglected. There might have been other problems that made it impossible for her to stay with her family. Whatever happened, she was not safe, happy, and getting her needs met. She now has more problems than most children. Learning about her special problems is your first step. You will love her, care about her, and encourage her. That's just the way you are. At your home, she also can count on help with her problems, whatever they are. She will get what she needs, whatever it takes. Let's think about children who are abused and neglected. Abuse and neglect cause lifelong problems. Being mistreated hurts children in ways you can…

Simon says, “Communicate for Success.” – Audio TidBits Podcast

Simon is back. He says, “Communicate for Success.” In this episode of the Audio Tidbits Podcast, our old friend Simon shares his rules for effective success communication. There are several kinds of communication but communicating for success is special. Please listen and learn the strategies for making most any conversation a success conversation.

The Great Mouse May Have Met Her Match

Our intrepid hunters are again confronting the Great Mouse. They detected her in an alternative dimension, dangerously near the heart of the city. Their goal as always is to capture the Great Mouse, while protecting the human population of the Earth city. So, join me as we serve as neutral observers to the battle. Our role is to assure that the intrepid hunters strictly comply with the engagement rules of the cosmos Council, while fielding their most powerful weapons yet. Their newest fire power is indeed awesome.

The Internet Was Edited

I’m sure that by now you are aware of fake news. Someone somewhere adds to the content of the Internet by sharing what seems like legitimate news, good information or reporting that accurately reflects some aspect of the real world. The news appears to be true and valid, when in reality, it is intentionally false or at least misleading. With this type of deception and manipulation, it’s difficult and at times impossible to distinguish the real from the fake. Our struggle for the truth is made even more challenging when we know that people in respected positions can and do knowingly tell us that the real and true is fake and just as often that the fake is really true and should be believed. The result is that we are left wondering who, if anyone, we can trust to be straight with us. For the most part, we are reduced to taking everything on the Internet with a very large grain of sault, no matter who says it or no matter the source. I regret having to report to you that as pervasive as fake and intentionally misleading news is, things are far worse than any of us have imagined. I have intercepted a transmission from the home planet of the aliens amongst us. Due to a technical glitch that I admittedly don’t understand, my interception of the transmission was delayed for at least several months, if not longer. I suspect this delay was intentional, to prevent us from intervening to stop the aliens amongst us from implementing the directive included in the transmission. I fear that the directive has already been carried out. As best I can determine, the home planet of the aliens amongst us is a single consciousness or intelligence, with what appear to be individual aliens…

DonJohn/Mitch vs Joe/Bernie

I listen first to the Democrats and then to the Republicans, First to Joe and Bernie and then to DonJohn and Mitch. I think they are all talking about the USA and about our problems and issues, but it’s hard to know for sure. As best I can figure, the Dems think our most critical issues are healthcare and managing the people wanting to come in from Mexico. The Repubs are mostly concerned about the Dems and whether they will actually be able to displace DonJohn and Mitch in 2020. It must be more thoughtful than it first seems, so I try to go a little past the surface. Joe and Bernie are focused on and fighting for the twenty percent of us who struggle to make ends meet while DonJon and Mitch are committed to preserving the status quo and the privileged position of the twenty percent of us who are getting along just fine. I’ll take another pass at understanding what the fuss is all about. DonJohn and Mitch want to reduce controls and constraints on business and wealth expansion while Joe and Bernie want to regulate and contain business and wealth concentration to redistribute those benefits down the line to the workers among us and especially to the twenty percent least wealthy among us. For the full story, press play and listen to the podcast.

If Harry Potter Ran General Electric

orris, Tom. If Harry Potter Ran General Electric: Leadership Wisdom from the World of the Wizards. New York: Doubleday, 2006. The greatest teachers are always masters of their subjects who lead, train, guide, and inspire their student apprentices to their own forms of excellence. They never just pass on information. The master is a model, coach, helper, and motivator as well as a teacher and trainer. The best leaders teach by example and guide with encouragement. What we haven't ourselves received, we can't pass on to others. ... A great mentor is a person who has filtered his or her own prior personal experience, along with the experience of many others, analyzed it fully, and extracted from it the wisdom it contains. Ultimately, he is a great leader because he's a wise man who knows human nature, and who acts in everything he does with great character. Without truth, people can't work effectively. Without trust, people can't work efficiently. The best leaders in most circumstances tend to be just completely committed people with keen intelligence, great skill, focused energy, a clear vision, the courage of their convictions, a passion for what they're doing, strong character, and a robust sense of concern for others. We can mess up, and then clean up, and end up better than we started. The deepest emotions are compatible with the highest rationality in any life that is in full control of all its faculties. But without proper self-control, no amount of passion or intellect can guarantee either great leadership or even long-lasting personal success. ...Ethics is really about creating strength. It is a matter of making choices that preserve those values and qualities most deserving of preservation. It's about doing what's right in any given circumstances, regardless of the consequences we might happen to predict,…

The Success Train

Have you ever taken a trip on the success train? If not, you are in for a real treat. If you have made the journey with Tom and his friends before, you will discover that a second trip on the success train is even better than your first. Press play, climb aboard and enjoy the ride.

20 Reasons To Be a Democrat in 2020

Note that these 20 Reasons To Be a Democrat in 2020 are in no particular order and that it is not necessary to sign onto all 20 reasons. If you agree with or at least lean toward most of the reasons and don’t strongly disagree with the rest, being a Democrat in 2020 is likely the right choice for you. Reason 1: You believe that it is important for business to flourish, but also believe that there are other aspects of society that deserve and must receive equal and sometimes greater consideration, when formulating government policy and regulation. Reason 2: You believe that whether to carry a pregnancy to term is and should be the woman’s choice. Reason 3: You believe that the accumulation of wealth by individuals and companies is an inevitable product of capitalism and should be limited and to some extent redistributed through regulation and taxation. Reason 4: You believe that the nation’s natural resources and public areas should be protected from unsustainable use or exploitation through legislation and government regulation and from activities that represent undue risk to the areas where those resources and public areas are present. Reason 5: You believe that the right to bare arms has to be balanced against the right to life and safety for the public and that buying, selling and possessing guns should thus be limited or restricted through government regulation or policy in order to reduce safety risks to the public. Reason 6: You believe that global warming is a scientifically provable fact and represents a real and present danger for the planet and for its inhabitants. In particular, it represents a valid and significant threat to life in America. Reason 7: You believe that America’s priorities and interests should be balanced with the priorities and interests of…

Fault Finders

Do you know someone who would probably find something negative to say about the Easter Bunny? They always have a comment or opinion, and it's usually negative or critical. If you find these fault finders as annoying as I do, listen for a tip about how to manage them.

Since The Last Test Was So Fun

Here's another cool tune just for you. I am still testing Hosting and thought I might as well share it with you. Enjoy.

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Scaredy Cat

This scaredy cat is not in a nursery rhyme but most of us can identify. Press play and come along for the trip.

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Test Your Parenting

Diane Loomans once reminisced, “If I had my child to raise all over again, I’d build self-esteem first, and the house later. I’d finger-paint more, and point the finger less. I would do less correcting and more connecting. I’d take my eyes off my watch, and watch with my eyes. I’d take more hikes and fly more kites. I’d stop playing serious, and seriously play. I would run through more fields and gaze at more stars. I’d do more hugging and less tugging.”

Being a parent is both satisfying and challenging. Knowing exactly how to handle any situation can be very difficult. Sloan Wilson captured the central issue this way, “The hardest part of raising a child is teaching them to ride bicycles. A shaky child on a bicycle for the first time needs both support and freedom. The realization that this is what the child will always need can hit hard.”

Although being a parent is very complex and will have many twists and turns over the years, knowing how you and your child are doing through the process is less daunting. If the following statements are most always tru for you as a parent, both you and your child are most likely making the journey rather successfully. Before we get to the statements though, there is a point that needs emphasis. Joyce Maynard made the point for us this way when she said, “It’s not only children who grow. Parents do too. As much as we watch to see what our children do with their lives, they are watching us to see what we do with ours.”

Okay, here we go. Think about each statement and honestly decide if it is true for you. If it is, you and your child are probably doing just fine. If not, you definitely have some work to do and possibly changes to make with your parent relationship with your child.

1. I am reasonable and fair when disciplining my child.

2. I know what my child needs and what is important to him or her.

3. I am able to get my child to cooperate with me.

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Testing Your Mental Health

1. What do you think it means to have good mental health?

2. What do you do to help your mental health?

3. What do you like about yourself?

4. What helps you feel happy, excited, satisfied? What kinds of people, situations, things help you feel good, help you be emotionally positive?

5. When do you feel unhappy? What kinds of people, situations, or things get you to feeling afraid, angry, sad, confused, or feeling emotionally negative?

6. Sometimes our negative emotions get out of balance and sort of take over. When this happens, we sometimes have problems with our behavior and adjustment. When your emotions get a little out of balance and the negative emotions take over, what kinds of problems does it cause you with your behavior, your adjustment?

7. Our feelings are okay. This includes feeling afraid, angry, or sad. How we deal with our feelings makes a difference, though. How do you deal with it when you feel angry, when you feel afraid, when you feel sad?

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Everything There Is To Know About Success

Do you want to know everything there is to know about success in about five minutes? If so, please press play and learn. If not, well, you’re on your own.

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Too Smart to be That Dumb

There are many reasons why some of us succeed while others of us are only getting by. One of the more hidden reasons is directly related to how successful people – yes, all of them — communicate. They always have smart conversations. While others are having simple conversations, the successful are doing smart, without anyone noticing. Do you communicate for success? I doubt that you ever do otherwise. I am assuming that you are too smart to be that dumb. Listen and hear how it works.

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Negotiation: Everything You Ever Need to Know

In this episode of the Audio Tidbits Podcast, you learn everything you need to know about negotiation at home, at work, or wherever you are when the time comes to make a deal. The skills you will develop will facilitate your being more effectively assertive, being a better problem solver, and being a better conflict manager. Developing the skills is sometimes tedious and requires a lot of practice. The payoff is both substantial and positive though.

At first, it will be useful to move through the negotiation process in a step-by-step manner. With practice and experience, you will gradually get to a point where effective negotiating is second nature to you and is not something that requires a lot of detailed activity. At first though, it is important to develop a negotiating plan and to seek out opportunities to practice. It is a little like learning to play the piano. Learning how is tedious and time consuming. Being able to play well however, is a very satisfying thing indeed.

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My Special Moment

I’m still finding the Prompts app on my iPhone pretty interesting. Whether I decide to play every time or not, it does get me thinking about things I would otherwise not consider.

The idea is that the app provides a phraise to serve as a thought starter. The point is to finish the sentence that starts with the prompt phraise. I suspect that the authors hope that we will write more than a sentence, but you get the idea.

I talked about one of the recent prompts on PPOV.net yesterday where I share my Personal Point Of View. I found the prompt interesting enough to explore it further here on the Audio Tidbits Podcast. I invite you to join me on the mental journey. …

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The Witch In The Box

In what I think was probably the most recent episode of Benjamen Walker’s Theory of Everything podcast, Mr. Walker featured an artificial intelligence (AI) expert from Google. The Google guy was discussing what sounds like an AI game for geeks. In this scenario, the geeks are themselves artificial intelligence entities. Think of them as computer one and computer two.

Computer one’s gig is to create realistic scenes indistinguishable from reality. Think of them as mind pictures. Also keep in mind that these scenes are completely computer generated. They are fully a product of artificial intelligence, ones and zeros supported by algorithms. Once the button is pushed, there is no additional human intervention.

For computer two, the gig is reality detection. Along with IA scenes from computer one, computer two is shown scenes captured from actual reality. The challenge for computer two is to tell which scenes are artificial and which are actual, which are fake and which are real. Think of computer two as a lie detector of sorts. …

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Pro Tips For Success

Success requires Focus, Focus, Focus. Your full undivided attention is on your success agenda. You do not permit distraction or competing priorities. You continuously say Yes to your success.

Success requires Timing, Timing, Timing. You are where you need to be, when you need to be there, doing what you need to do. You are always prepared, always good to go.

Success requires Attitude, Attitude, Attitude. It is not a whatever you happen to feel about it today attitude. It is the success attitude. You believe in your success, your capacity to succeed. What’s more, you have no doubt about what you do to succeed. You do whatever it takes. …

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The Familiar First

This episode of the Audio Tidbits Podcast is a remix of an earlier episode that suggests an approach to people and situations that reduces any tendency we may have to reflexively react negatively to others and new situations. It helps protect us from us.

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Three From Charlie Checker: Detective

Are you a Charlie Checker fan? If not, this is your chance to get abord with Charlie and his latest cases. Charlie thinks of himself as a detective but is at least as much into being a teacher and friend. Press play and get the story for yourself. I think you will enjoy it.

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The Success Train

Have you ever taken a trip on the success train? If not, you are in for a real treat. If you have made the journey with Tom and his friends before, you will discover that a second trip on the success train is even better than your first. Press play, climb aboard and enjoy the ride.

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