Character/Values


06Jun 2010

Walking, Jogging & Sprinting: Some Observations and Life Lessons

Recently, I went to our state high school track and field championship meet — it is a wonderful spectacle — thousands of student athletes, coaches, friends and family members in one stadium. Vibrant colors are displayed in the uniforms, supportive T-shirts and baseball caps, and tents (to keep the students out of the sun). Lots of sunshine, sunscreen and water

12May 2010

Understanding Why We Make the Financial Decisions We Do

There is a relatively new field of social science (i.e. the study of social behavior) called behavioral economics. It has been around for about 10 years formally. And two of the leaders in the field (Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky) received a Nobel prize a few years back. As a psychologist, initially I had a bit of a cynical view

15Apr 2010

Lessons Learned (for Daily Life) from 20 Years of Testing Students

Traveling a few weeks ago, I was reflecting on one of the professional activities I have done for over 20 years — testing students of various ages for possible learning difficulties (ADD/ADHD, dyslexia, learning disabilities). I realized I have learned a lot of lessons from the process — interviewing parents; testing students from 5 years old through elementary school, high

10Apr 2010

A Fascinating Book on Personal Responsibility, Character and Conscience

Some books are just incredibly thought-provoking. I was recently referred to The Language of Conscience by two good friends whom I highly respect. So I ordered it and have been reading it (it is one of those books you do not finish in a couple of hours). And I am intrigued. I am not sure I fully understand all of

31Mar 2010

Successful Teams with Highly Talented Team Members

Over the past few months, I have had the opportunity to work closely with business teams comprised of highly talented and successful professionals. Some of these high-powered teams work together well and achieve amazing results, while some of the teams are struggling a bit in working together effectively. And one of the teams had to reorganize because the team members

07Mar 2010

Creative Problem-Solving: Ways to Communicate When the Other Person Just Doesn't "Get It"

My wife (Kathy) and I have been married 30 years. We are both college-educated and fairly good communicators. Most people understand us when we talk or write. But sometimes we have a hard time communicating with each other. It is not that we don’t try, or that one of us doesn’t want to understand. But occasionally (I think it is

09Feb 2010

Trust and Business Relationships — Some Common Pitfalls

Recently, in a variety of settings I am observing the issue of trust impacting business relationships. Obviously, trust is at the foundation for business transactions — that the vendor will provide the goods or services purchased, that the goods or services will be at the quality level described initially, and that the customer will pay for the goods or services

09Jan 2010

A Tribute: To a Man of Great Character

Unfortunately, when the issue of “character” is in the news today, the focus is usually on character failures — lack of integrity, marital unfaithfulness, greed and dishonesty. So to be able to talk about a man of good character is a privilege. When thinking about the title of this entry, I was indecisive about whether it should be “To a

28Dec 2009

The Problem with Trying to Be "Fair" With Your Children

In my role as a family coach for wealthy families, one of the common issues that arises is the parents’ desire to be “fair” with their children and grandchildren. (I put “fair” in quotation marks because it really is an unusual term that is defined differently by many people and is almost totally based on perception.) For whatever reason, and

17Dec 2009

Creating New Family Traditions Around the Holidays

A “new tradition” is sort of an oxymoron. By definition, (“a long-established, inherited way of thinking or acting”), a tradition is some action that you have been doing for a while. But I believe it is both possible and helpful to intentionally create new traditions for your family. We need to recognize that families go through a variety of life

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