Cathy W said... 47
Cathy, I will be sending you an email in a little while--please reply back within 48 hours and I will forward your info to the publisher who will send you this marvelous book directly.
For the next two months I will be joining in with several of the big money giveaways as well as a couple of book related giveaways--so keep watching Miki's Hope!
I received “Find the Upside of the Down Times” written by Dr. Rob Pennington in the mail today. I decided to start reading it this evening. Dr. Pennington recommended, in his introduction, that each chapter be read—then the exercise, which is included at the end of each chapter, be practiced for a week or two before starting the next chapter. However—once I started reading this short, extremely informative, entertaining, thought provoking and concisely written book (125 pages) I just kept going until I finished it!
I will however be re reading this book slowly again and maybe even a third or fourth time! This is a keeper!
Part of the title of this book is “How to Turn Your Worst Experiences Into Your Best Opportunities!” Dr. Pennington uses several of his real life experiences to prove this can be done. Now admittedly I was a bit skeptical on how being shot in the chest could be turned around! Actually, Dr. Pennington was very lucky he did not die outright after being shot in the chest and even luckier that he happened to go to a door of a person who was a heart surgeon—but this is not what turned his life around. It has something to do with being uninsured and the hospital bill—no I am NOT going to tell you what happened because I honestly think you should read this for yourself!
One of the chapters deals with an episode where Dr. Pennington was fired—and yes—the fact that he was fired did turn his life around for the better! Actually I do believe in the old saying when one door closes another is opening! And this is readily proved by what went on during and after he got fired!!
The power of positive, forward thinking as opposed to negativity or backward thinking as a way of life, I believe is one of the main objectives that Dr Pennington is trying to prove in his book—he succeeded admirably!
Dr Pennington has agreed to do an interview. I did not think I would be able to-however there are a few questions I would like to ask him after reading his book.
1. Your comments on Stress are extremely interesting—but in light of this economy and the shortage of jobs—how would you tell someone to handle shortened hours with more work which is obviously stressful when that work can not be completed correctly in that time frame.
Answer: Thank you for your appreciation of my comments on stress. I went through a lot of stress in order to have the insights that helped me recognize my automatic stress reaction quicker and move through it faster to what I call the stress management response. At the end of my first chapter I have a link to the following audio of a live presentation: http://www.resource-i.com/stress1.html
Concerning stress in the workplace, management does not usually say, "A decision is being made to not get as much done with the same level of quality," when staff is reduced. But if workload expectations are not clarified, employees are unfairly left with the expectation that they are now supposed to get more work done with a high level of quality. Everyone knows this is not possible. But for any employee who is used to producing high quality results this expectation is both disheartening and stressful.
Here are a few suggestions:
1) Accept that the game has changed and that your old criteria for quality success no longer is possible for every task, although it may still be appropriate for some tasks. This is not a reflection of your competence but of a profound change in your circumstance.
2) When confronted with competing deadlines it is your boss’s responsibility to determine your priorities. Involve your supervisor more often in reviewing the process, progress and timetable of your milestones so that no surprises or misunderstandings occur as to priorities and deadlines. In the book, Death by Meeting, Patrick Lencioni encourages teams to start the day with a “Lightning Round” meeting in which each person has 60 seconds to outline their major tasks of the day. This is a quick way to communicate challenges and accomplishments.
3) Do your best to propose a solution to your supervisor whenever your supervisor does not clarify your priorities by asking if he or she wants to propose an alternative to your list of priorities. If not, clarify by saying, “So, you want me to go ahead with …” This allows the supervisor to confirm the decision.
4) Accept there is always more work to do. We will die with things not done. In the meantime, enjoy your self while you are getting things done. You can learn more about how to Turn Worry Into Its Positive Opposite Possibility – A Goal! and then generate action steps towards achieving that goal by checking this post on my blog:
2. Not everyone who appears to be negative truly is—they may say negative things but strive towards positive outcomes—do you agree with this. I happen to be one of these people—and even as I am saying negative things I am forging ahead and almost always achieve my goals.
Answer: I do agree. There is certainly a range of people, from those so clinically depressed that no positive thought can occur because of chemical imbalances or neurological damage. There are others like you and me who forge ahead and get things done, in spite of the worries our concerns!
It’s normal to worry. It’s a habit to project a negative into the unknown. The question is, do you stop there? Or do you take the next step of flipping that negative possibility around to it’s positive opposite possibility, a goal, and then begin taking action steps toward that goal? That is called planning.
Of course, this is easier said than done. But it is most certainly easier done than not done! To help move quicker from one's habitually negative reaction to a more proactive, positive response I have blog-posts, handouts, audios and video resources available for free on my blog at: www.UpsideDownTimes.com
3. You are an accomplished public speaker and trainer as well as a psychologist-how much of that PhD do you actually use when dealing with individuals in the groups.
Answer: I often make the joke that my Ph.D. means I know how to use a library. But the truth is that 10 years of college taught me how to learn. I learned how to think, how to do research and how to express myself. I learned how to evaluate the evidence that supports whatever idea or opinion someone expresses.
This ability to learn has helped me work with individuals and groups, to speak in ways that educate and inspire without challenging anyone's dogma. I did not learn that skill in college, but I got a foundation of understanding that provided a most powerful springboard into a lifestyle of continuing research and self-education.
There are many topics that continue to fascinate me about this amazing experience of being a human being who can hear or read a new thought that instantly changes the course of one's life forever. I love to have and share that experience. The simple truth is that the more I have learned about myself, the more I discover I know about everyone else. The more accepting I am of my own limitations, the more compassionate I have become of the limitations of others. Getting the Ph.D. was just the launching pad in my life-long journey of exploration to understand how to increase the ability to consciously grow and evolve.
I was most fortunate in college, particularly in graduate school, to have the opportunity to work with some amazing teachers. In my book, Find The Upside Of The Down Times, I acknowledge the preeminent social psychologist and Professor Emeritus at the University of California at Santa Cruz, Dr. Elliot Aronson. I spent about 6,000 hours outside of my regular academic curriculum working with Elliot in "encounter groups" or "sensitivity trainings"; half of that time as a participant and half as a co-trainer. This prepared me for the past 29 years of training employees of ExxonMobil and other major corporations, keynote addresses to associations such as National Safety Council or Meeting Professionals International. Working with Elliot while completing my Ph.D. was the foundation of much of what I do today.
4. Is there anything else you would like to say?
Answer: As a writer I was admittedly anxious about how others would review my book. So I have been pleasantly surprised by the glowing reviews it has received so far.
In a review on her blog Your Journey of Encouragement http://ht.ly/6vCkV, Meredith Bell agreed with my intention that this book could be used by readers like a roadmap for themselves, rather than just a dramatic story about someone else’s life. She points out that readers can use the book to create a series of transformational experiences in how they see and respond to the challenges they face. Meredith found value with the design in which each chapter follows the same format: 1) a true story from my own challenging life, 2) the lesson I learned in that challenge, and 3) an activity I designed to save the reader the time and pain it took me to learn that life lesson. The most powerful benefits come from reading each chapter, taking a break to do the activity and let the lesson and insight of that chapter bubble around in your life a few days. Then go on to the next chapter.
In another review, (Strategy to Deal with Stress in Bad Times and Find Opportunities | Suite101.com http://ow.ly/6ErCW ) Jerry Lopper states that Find The Upside Of The Down Times is “a perfect complement to” Rabbi Harold Kushner’s When Bad Things Happen To Good People. Lopper says, “Kushner answers the question, ‘Why?’ and Pennington answer the question, ‘What now?’… “Pennington is not suggesting we ignore a tragedy by calling it an opportunity. Instead he suggests that we accept negative events without dwelling on them, then as quickly as possible shift to positive actions in finding and exploiting possible opportunities.”
Thank you so very much Dr. Pennington for answering my questions!
Now--on to the giveaway
One very lucky reader is going to win a copy of this book--the winner will be chosen by Random.org. Please make sure to put your email address in each comment so that I can contact you if you win! If you win you will receive an email from me and you will have 48 hours to respond.
You can also buy this book at Amazon!
Mandatory: Visit Dr Penningtons Blog and tell me something you learned
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