Before Social Distancing Was a Thing

Do you remember way back before social distancing was a thing? Just to prompt your recall, join me on a little trip down memory lane. It’s good not to forget since one day we might actually return to those days when we did not give any thought to hanging out and crowding close to each other.

Categories: Audio Tidbit Tags: , ,

Family Tips

Does sheltering in place put added pressure on your family? Are your family relationships subject to increased jeopardy? Is your family at heightened risk? The answers to all of these questions is, “It depends.” It depends on how well you personally handle the added stress and how conscientiously you attend to the pressures and stresses on your family relationships. The episode includes some tips and perspectives that you may find helpful.

Relationships Under Pressure

We are all under a lot of pressure these days in addition to the virus itself. Those extra stresses may include economic as well as emotional. Just having to shelter in place and social distance when we do leave home are definitely not normal and only add to our sense of uncertainty and anxiousness.

We each know how the situation effects us and have some idea about how it is effecting others in our families. What we may not think about is how much pressure current circumstances are putting on our relationships, especially our relationships with our significant others. Even solid adult relationships can give in to the pressure if we aren’t very careful. For that reason, I am sharing an episode focusing on long-term relationships and those things we need to remember and give the special attention they deserve. It takes about an hour.

Categories: How To Matter Tags:

Trying Times

Even if you are still leaving home to go to work, your activities are probably quite restricted. There is a long list of things you can’t do and places you can’t go. That means that you are spending more time in close proximity to your family. And being closer to each other does not necessarily lead to more closeness. It’s perhaps even more likely that you are working from home or – worse yet – without a job. The result is that you spend most all of your time with your family.

Can you relate to this? My parents have been gone for several years; but when they were still alive, I loved them dearly but definitely would not have wanted to live with them. Had it been necessary, we would have worked it out; but living together is not something either they or I would have chosen. The same holds for my adult children and for their children, for that matter. My family is special to me; but living with them on a 24-hour basis sound like a prescription for trouble.

But this is a time of little to no choice. That’s why we are sharing some tips for getting along when there is not much opportunity to get apart.

Our tips start with some wisdom that has been around forever. It says that it’s not what we love about each other that helps us get along, but is what we are willing to put up with from each other. What we love about each other is why we want to get along to start with. What we are willing to put up with from each other is what keeps us from blowing up or walking out. But when we can’t get some distance from each other or time away, putting up with what we have been just putting up with can get very hard to handle. Putting up with it – whatever it is – on a 24-hour, 7 days a week basis can stress the limits of tolerance and sensitivity for the best of us. What we just put up with before is now way over the top, even for us. …

Read More

More Tolerance On and Off Line

In these uncommon times, relating well to others on and off line is more important than ever. Stress is high and people aren’t always at their best. This makes it essential that we do our best to be our best when interacting with others. Expanding our range of tolerance is a good place for each of us to start.

Categories: How To Matter Tags:

Did You Intend to…?

How much better would your world be if other people just understood that you seldom intend to say or do whatever is annoying or frustrating them? Let’s think about how that might work.

People seldom intend to be jerks. I think we have all had to deal with someone who is just being a jerk. They are being difficult and impossible to cope with due to their seeming to be stupid, insensitive, hopelessly self-centered or clueless, or maybe all of the above. But are we ever the jerk in the picture? We sure don’t intend to be the jerk but we probably have our jerk moments, at least from the perspective of other people. As reasonable and as appropriate as we try to be, even nice people like us may slip into jerk mode at times.

People seldom intend to do less than their best. Do they always make an effort to do everything they can do as well as they can do it? No, people surely don’t do that. Rather, they usually make their best effort to do as much as they think is necessary and to do it as well as they think it needs done. The problem is that we may not agree that they have done enough or done it as well as we needed it done. Our issue is that we wanted more or better. From our perspective, the other person could have and should have done more or done better. It seems to us that we haven’t gotten his or her best effort. We have to deal with a shirker, with someone who is lazy or is sloppy and half does things. Of course we always give everything we do our best effort, always do things correctly and completely – or do we?

Read More