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Newsletter Vol. #102

I have decided not to declare a definitive date for the launch of my new book, Communication & Relationships, but rather it will depend on when I have 1000 email addresses to help me launch the book at the McNally Robinson bookstore. So I would like you to help me get to this goal of 1000 email addresses.

How can you help, you ask? Well, you could suggest to a friend they sign up for the newsletter (See Sample email-"Hi (Friend)" at the end of the newsletter); you could host a Book Party (; do a short Testimonial or a longer Review of Communication & Relationships; ask groups you are part of if they would like a "free" copy of C & R and then contact me, (I would ask that you collect their email addresses so they can receive the newsletter); I could make a presentation as well; and do you know anyone who could help me with a Social Media Campaign?

Did you know?

More than one-third of married couples in the U.S. met online, according to a new study looking at couples married between 2005 and 2012. Believe it or not, they actually seem less likely to divorce than those who met in person. The study, which included 19,000 people, also found online couples tend to be happier.

Re-decision Pt. 2

I repeat myself: I am very excited about this five part series dealing with the impact that early negative childhood messages/experiences have on our adult lives. We are driven by these unhealthy messages and if we don't become aware of them, they will direct our adult behaviours. Remember though, we can re-decide on these messages and live a fuller and healthier life.  Dan

Reminder/continuity from Pt. 1

Apparently "self-directed" individuals, excited and challenged by their work continue to "burn-out". Over time their effectiveness, despite their decision-making and time management skills is undermined by feelings of being overextended, restless, guilty, or resentful. There is a point where being efficient with life is not the answer. To deal with burn-out, both external and internal, controls or changes are necessary. Relief from both sources of tension (External forces-weather, pace of modern living, and Internal forces-perception we have of self and others, the decisions we make as a result of those perceptions) requires the
application of two stress reduction approaches-Skills and Decision.

Pt. 2

Skills Approach

The "skills" approach to stress management is effective with external stress factors. We become more effective by communicating better, organizing more efficiently, estimating more accurately, and so forth. The list of potential positive additions to your skills is probably endless. There is a point, however, when organization and efficiency actually produce stress. Perhaps you have increased your skills to a point where you can handle twice the workload you did two years ago, but have you really reduced your stress level? Unless the increase in efficiency is concurrent with decisions that minimize stress level, what you have actually accomplished is to invite twice the responsibility.

Decision Approach

A "decision" approach is effective with internal stress factors. Whether or not
we wish to acknowledge it, each of us make numerous decisions each day.
Many of our present choices are based on decisions we made years ago; decisions about who I am, how I could get love and affection, and what I was supposed to do with life. Some of those decisions are limiting and stress producing. Re-deciding, making new decisions about who I am, how I can meet my needs and how to approach life, frees us to act on life rather than react to life.

The decisions which form the framework of our lives influence the kinds of questions we ask ourselves. When problem solving, for example, if an early decision was to "try to please every one", we restrict our problem solving to "how" to please others rather than "whether to" or "who to".

Similarly if we decided "achievement yields approval", we restrict our questioning to "how to achieve" rather than "Why is approval so important to me?" or "Whose approval will be important to me?"
The focus of this article is to explore the "decision" approach. Two phases are implied: a) becoming conscious of and understanding the decisions on which we are now operating, and b) confirming, rejecting or altering decisions which guide our lives.

Background to Decisions

The decisions referred to are made at an early age and form the initial foundation of our approach to life. Sometimes they are in response to a specific event. For example, the trauma of the loss of a parent could result in the decision, "It's better not to get close to people. It hurts too much if they go away". Repeating a school grade might trigger a decision, "I'm stupid" or "I'm not as good as others". Other decisions are made on the basis of what appears to the child to be repeated messages from his environment.
If rarely cuddled, a child might conclude, "I'm not loveable". If they constantly
believe no one listens to them, the conclusion might be, "I'm not important". It is critical to remember that these decisions are made when a child's ability to make accurate interpretations of the world is essentially undeveloped. As a child we interpret the words and behaviour of the "big" people in our world from our limited frame of reference. The messages we used as the basis of decisions about ourselves and others came from grownups that were important to us when we were little. These messages take the form of expectations, limitations, approval, disapproval and instruction about what is appropriate behaviour. From these messages we get our first hints about how we are supposed to live as adults. Many messages resulted in decisions which do not produce stress, but many do. The influential messages instructed us in both what we should and should not do, and although each of us have unique interpretations, a number of common do's and don'ts that create stress have been identified.

References: Bob & Mary Goulding, C. Panati,  Hans Selye, 
Pt. 3 in next newsletter

Reader Response

I have driven cars of many different colours, trucks of many sizes, buses, bicycles and scooters.  These vehicles are useful and beneficial.  In recent times we have seen vehicles being misused.  When someone takes a truck and runs it up a sidewalk or into a group of people; that is misuse.  It is not what the manufacturer intended.

In India I had occasion to spend time with a fellow grandpa.  He was Muslim.  We agreed that what we wanted was to grow old surrounded by our children and grand children as well as great grand children if we are especially fortunate.  No jihad.  No building larger churches.  No having more power or raising more support.  Let me bounce the little ones on my knee while I share the love, peace and joy of what I believe.

One of my favourite stories is when Jesus cleaned up the temple.  It enters the grey area if I go back to my pacifistic upbringing.  I shiver and tremble when I watch what is happening in modern churches.  Jesus taught two commandments.  The second is to love all the people we come in contact with everyday.  So I ask, 'Why are gay people, alcoholics and such like evil people not welcome in most evangelical churches?'  By the way people who misuse food are fully welcome.  I have been told that only Republican or Conservative people are going to heaven.  If you have any central or left views you are going straight to the hot place.  There is a chasm between what Jesus taught and what is lived.  (and you wonder why most pastors don't like me).

As I lived and listened to people of all kinds of faith backgrounds, I find that the same is true through out the world.  The leader taught but too often the people have found ways to twist 'the truth'.

And, yes, I rant on.  In every faith community there are people who try to follow the teaching literally.  I applaud them.  And I hope I live by what I say I believe.                                                        Steve

The police officer got out of his car as the kid who was stopped for speeding rolled down his window. 'I've been waiting for you all day,' the officer said.
The kid replied, Yeah, well I got here as fast as I could.'
When the cop finally stopped laughing, he sent the kid on his way without a ticket.  

Did you know?

Canadian health guidelines say that to achieve health benefits, adults need at least 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity each week, and children ages 6 to 17 need 60 minutes a day. Certainly, that's more than the commonly prescribed 20 minutes, three times a week, but more worrisome is that a new Statistics Canada survey found that only 15% of adults meet the guidelines. Most distressing: only 6% of children do.

Stress and Exercise

A research team based at Princeton University found that physical activity really does reduce the body's response to stress.
What happens is that exercise "reorganizes" the brain, so that its response to stress is reduced, and anxiety is less likely to interfere with normal brain function. Specifically, the study showed that exercise produced a large increase in the number of new neurons in the hippocampus, the brain region shown to regulate anxiety.
1. Exercise pumps up endorphins. Physical activity helps increase the production of the brain's "feel-good" neurotransmitters, called endorphins.
2. Exercise is meditation in motion. After exercising, most of us have forgotten the day's irritations by concentrating only on the body's movements. Often people discover that regular exercise helps people remain calm and clear in everything they do.
3. Exercise generally improves mood. Regular exercise can increase self-confidence and lower the symptoms associated with anxiety. Many people find they sleep better when they have exercised.

Did you know

Cardiologist Daniel B Mark, Duke University School of Medicine, followed the progress of 1719 men and women after cardiac catheterization. After one year, 12% of people who were initially pessimistic about their health had died, compared to only 5% of the optimists. Dr. Nancy Frasure-Smith, of the Montréal Heart Institute, found that heart patients who scored high on pessimism were eight times more likely than optimists to die over the course of 18 months. In men and women between ages 62 and 87, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania found that optimistic individuals had higher helper/suppressor T-cell ratios, meaning greater ability to resist the disease.

Golf (I hope this is funny, and if it isn't, it's because you didn't send me any funny ones)

Q:  Do you know why there are 18 holes on a golf course?

A:  Because that's how long it took the Scots who invented the game to finish their bottle of whisky!

Have just a fantastic week and hug someone you love.

Sample email
Hi (Friend)
Just a short note to let you know that my friend, Dr. Dan, puts out a very interesting newsletter once a week, and I thought you might find it as stimulating and informative as I do.
Dr. Dan Rosin, a Manitoba author, therapist, and counsellor for 50 years, puts out a free weekly newsletter entitled, "That's How I See It!" The newsletter is filled with articles on communication, change, personal power, self-esteem, relationships, anger, exercise/fitness, reader input, and a lot more. I really enjoy reading the newsletter as there is always a relevant take-away for me and I thought there might be for you too. So please tap the link and subscribe.

Dan's first self-help book, Finding Balance has sold over 10,000 copies. I just received his newest book, Communication And Relationships, "free" just for letting you know about the "That's How I See It!" newsletter. He has indicated that he would extend the same offer of a "free" copy of his newest book to my friends if they asked to receive his newsletter now. (I believe his thinking is to give away 1000 hard copy books in order to eventually sell 5000 books. The 1000 "free" books are expected to go quickly.)
To have Dr. Dan add you to the distribution list for his free newsletter, just tap the link, register your email address, and subscribe. Of course if you aren't as impressed as I am, you are free to unsubscribe at any time.
 Instructions on how and where to pick up your "free" hard copy book will be emailed to you if you ask for a copy.