Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Why Bad News Grabs Our Attention

Every day we are bombarded with television, radio, internet and newspaper headlines and stories that draw our attention to bad news.  We hear and read about natural disasters, economic uncertainty, wars and other tragedies that serve to trigger distress and worry in many people.

Band NewsDid you know that 53.4% of the news on television alone depicts violence, conflict and suffering? The worse the report, the more likely it is to be the lead story because humans are naturally attracted to bad news. 

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Are You an Optimist?

What do you think? Is the glass half-empty or half-full? Do you usually anticipate the worst or more often think that things will turn out okay? The way you answer those simple questions can give you insight into whether you are more naturally a pessimist or optimist. Once you see what your natural tendency is, consider the impact it has on your life. In particular, which view of life do you think makes you more attractive and enjoyable to other people?

OptimistWe all know certain types of people we prefer not to spend a lot of time with. For me, it’s the person who possesses a pessimistic attitude. You know the type; they look like they just ate a lemon and every time you come up with a new idea they give you five reasons for why it won’t work. If you say it’s a beautiful day, they say, “Yeah, but it won’t stay this way.”

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

What are You Thankful For?

Happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday of the year.  I have very fond memories of the many special gatherings my family has celebrated together.  Playing and watching football, catching up on the latest news, and eating until we practically pass out continues to be a part of our family’s Thanksgiving tradition.  As is the case for many families, it has also been our tradition to acknowledge the many blessings we experienced throughout the year.

Pausing to reflect on the things and people you are thankful for at Thanksgiving is a great practice, but it’s important to remember how valuable it is to engage in this exercise on a daily basis. When you consistently make space in your life to regularly pause and express gratitude it promotes an attitude of appreciation, optimism and hopefulness.

The truth is, we too often take for granted the things and people that help to bring happiness and joy into our lives.  To understand this reality of life you need only to talk to someone who is going through a financial crisis, poor health, the death of a loved one or some other painful life circumstance. When you possess an attitude of thankfulness you are much more resilient to the negative effects of life’s inevitable hardships.

As I reflect on what I’m thankful for this year I have a very long list, but here are just a few:

I’m very thankful that I’m married to a wonderful woman who has always given far more than she receives and for the wonderful parents who raised her. I’m thankful for my new daughter-in-law and my son’s opportunity to begin a career that has been his life-long dream.  I’m thankful for my first grandchild my daughter and son-in-law will be welcoming into the world in just a few

Thursday, November 27, 2014

The Attitude of Gratitude: How to make your life better every day!

I hope you’re reading this with the smell of turkey and pumpkin pie in the air. Thanksgiving is one of the things I am thankful for, because it gives us an opportunity to consider everything we have that inspires an attitude of gratitude.

Attitude of GratitudeIn my last blog, I shared the Happiness Formula, and the research showed that some of our tendency to be naturally positive or negative is simply an inborn part of who we are.  However, we also found that almost half of the influence comes from what we choose to do.  I am thankful for that, because it means we can all intentionally find things to be grateful for and improve our outlook on life.

I came across this list of blessings on the web, and though you may have seen it, it bears repeating at this time of year.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

The Wisdom of a Champion – Part IV

Near the top of Coach Wooden’s Pyramid of Success are two leadership characteristics, poise and confidence, that emerge as a result of having successfully applied the qualities of the first three tiers of the pyramid.

POISE – Coach Wooden defines poise as “being true to oneself, not getting rattled, thrown off, or unbalanced regardless of the circumstance or situation.”  In his book, Wooden on Leadership, we read, “Poise means holding fast to your beliefs and acting in accordance with them, regardless of how bad or good the situation may be.  Poise means avoiding pose or pretense, comparing yourself to others, and acting like someone you’re not.  Poise means having a brave heart in all circumstances.”

CONFIDENCE – the firmly held belief that you have achieved a high level of competence through dedicated study and preparation.  Confidence is the awareness of having consistently made the sacrifice and effort necessary to turn personal and team potential into high level performance.  Coach Wooden warns that confidence must regularly be monitored so it does not turn into arrogance or a feeling of superiority.  It is this sense of elitism that discourages continuous hard work and effort and ultimately leads to mediocrity and failure.

Live, Work and Relate Well!

Dr. Todd