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Independence Day ~ 4th of July

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Friday, November 18, 2011

Relationships Love Language ~ Utilizing Thanksgiving as a Reminder to Appreciate Your Staff ~ Identifying the Positive Characteristics of Colleagues ~ Communicating your appreciation, Make sure your praise is specific and personal, Communicate in a way that will be comfortable for you and Absolutely be genuine

The First Thanksgiving. By Jean Louis Gerome FerrisGiving Thanks for Gods Bounty and Each Other

The First Thanksgiving. By Jean Louis Gerome Ferris

 







 

 

 

 




 

 

A Marriage Carol

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What's Your Love Language?

Relationships Love Language ~ Utilizing Thanksgiving as a Reminder to Appreciate Your Staff ~ Identifying the Positive Characteristics of Colleagues ~ Communicating your appreciation, Make sure your praise is specific and personal, Communicate in a way that will be comfortable for you and Absolutely be genuine

 

 

 

Utilizing Thanksgiving as a Reminder to Appreciate Your Staff

 

Thanksgiving is the holiday where we are encouraged to be thankful for the good things in our lives - health, safety, adequate food, clothing, and shelter, as well as the many material blessings we have. For most people, Thanksgiving is usually more of a personally-focused celebration, including sharing meals and time with family and friends.

But the Thanksgiving holiday season can also be an opportunity to focus on, and be reminded of, the positive aspects of our work lives. This is especially true in these more difficult economic times, where many who desire employment are unable to find work or have to settle for a job beneath their professional capabilities.

For those who are supervisors, managers, business owners or leaders in their organizations, the Thanksgiving holiday is an excellent reminder to both remember, and communicate, the most valuable asset in your workplace: the people who work there (both employees and volunteers).

While many people sarcastically say, "I'd enjoy my work more, if it weren't for the people"; in reality, most of us have highly talented and valuable colleagues. And a few minutes of reflection can help each of us identify those positive characteristics that our team members bring to the workplace each day.

Identifying the Positive Characteristics of Colleagues.

Think about the individuals you see and with whom you work regularly.

  • What do they do that makes you smile?
  • What character quality do they demonstrate, that if it weren't present would really make life at work tough? (e.g. dependability, thoroughness, punctuality, honesty)
  • What talents or skills do they regularly demonstrate that are part of "who they are"? (e.g. good communication skills, accurate detailed work, being a good problem solver, creative).
Make a list of your teammates, along with the characteristics you've identified.

Communicating your appreciation.

While it's nice (for you) to reflect on and be thankful for the top quality co-workers you have, it would make their day to hear from you what you appreciate about them. Let me give you some tips that will make the appreciation communicated really "hit the mark" (versus "fall flat"):

  1. Make sure your praise is specific and personal. General, impersonal praise is like eating mashed potatoes without gravy or butter - blah. Use their name. Tell them specifically how their positive characteristic makes your life better. Give a specific example, if possible.
  2. Communicate in a way that will be comfortable for you. You can tell them verbally, write an email, or write a handwritten note in a Thanksgiving card. It doesn't have to be a big deal or production. Just do it.
  3. Absolutely be genuine. Don't try to fake it and don't overstate your appreciation ("You are the best accountant in the world!"). Make sure your tone of voice, facial expression, and body language match what you are communicating. If you are rushed, or uptight about something, wait until you have relaxed before talking to them.
A small act of communicating your appreciation to your colleagues may make their whole Thanksgiving a very special holiday. And the rewards you may reap in the coming weeks may be bountiful as well.

GUEST POST BY: Paul White, PhD

Dr. Paul White is co-author of The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace. He is a psychologist, author, speaker, and consultant who helps make work relationships work. For the past two decades, he has improved numerous businesses, wealthy family estates, schools, and nonprofit organizations by helping them to build healthy relationships, create positive workplace environments, and raising the level of job satisfaction for both employees and volunteers. For more information, visit DrPaulWhite.com

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Relationships Love Language ~ The Power of Words ~ "Don't underestimate the power of words!"


CELEBRATING GOD'S FAITHFULNESS
























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What's Your Love Language?

Relationships Love Language ~ The Power of Words ~ "Don't underestimate the power of words!"







The Power of Words
Dr. Gary Chapman


"Don't underestimate the power of words!"
That's what my mother told me when my dad was deployed in World War II. For them, it was true because she wrote Dad a letter every day. And he wrote her every time he had a free minute. The letters may have been a month late, but they brought news from home. And they expressed love. Mom and Dad stayed connected though separated by the miles and months.

In today's world, with computers and wireless phones, staying connected is easier than ever. Staying connected while apart is the best way to make re-entry sweet. If you are disconnected during deployment, it takes time to re-establish intimacy. If one of you has violated trust by being unfaithful, it takes genuine confession and forgiveness; then it follows the often slow process of rebuilding trust.

For the average couple who stays somewhat connected while deployed and remain true to each other, re-entry can be heavenly; with perhaps a few hellish moments. Whatever problems you had before deployment did not go away while you were apart. You must

start, not where you left off, but where you are now. That means, taking time to talk and listen. It means sharing what has happened while the two of you have been apart. Obviously, there is not time to relive all the experiences, but if you are to reconnect, you must share some of what has transpired.

Don't underestimate the power of words. They can make or break a relationship. Such statements as, "I missed you. I'm proud of you. You look great; I am glad you are home," communicate love to the one who has been deployed. While "You did a such a good job with the things while I was away. I'm so lucky to have you as a husband/wife. You look fabulous. I am so glad to be home again," communicate encouragement to the one who stated at home. No matter what has happened, beginning with positive words creates a climate for reconstruction.

This does not mean that you cannot voice your concerns, but even this need to be done in a positive way. "I know I may be misreading this. There are probably some things I don't know. But I felt concerned when...." This kind of statement is not condemning, but seeks information to clarify the situation. You can process your differences so long as you do not condemn each other. When you condemn and harshly criticize, you may create a war that is more volatile than the one from which you have returned.

The motif of a good marriage is mutual support and encouragement. Questions like, "What could I do to help you? How can I make your life easier? How could I best show my love to you?" express an attitude of helpfulness and will likely be well received by your spouse. Reaching out to help each other, you become partners in life, which is what marriage is all about.

The greatest detriment to such positive partnership is selfishness. Perhaps both of you feel that you have gone through a difficult period of life and you deserve a little pampering. However, when you focus on yourselves and start demanding things of each other, you become enemies. When you freely and genuinely reach out with the attitude of helping your spouse, you both become winners. Successful re-entry occurs when both partners seek the well being of the other.

Marsha, the wife of an enlisted man captured it all when she said "After all he had been through, I could not believe it when he came home and said, 'It was a hard deployment. But I'm home now and I'm here to serve you.' Of course, I wanted to serve him. What wife wouldn't respond positively to a husband who has that attitude?"

Editor's Note: Excerpt of an article Dr. Chapman wrote for Military Spouse Magazine several years ago.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Relationships Love Language ~ The Depressed Spouse ~ Identifying the Problem ~ Finding the Solution

Pemaquid Lighthouse and Cliffs; Maine, USA







 


                                                                                                             A Marriage Carol 
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What's Your Love Language?

Relationships Love Language ~ The Depressed Spouse ~ Identifying the Problem ~ Finding the Solution





The Depressed Spouse

Dr. Gary Chapman

John is a successful business man, but his wife is suffering from depression. "She spends most mornings in bed, and in the afternoons she just sits around the house," he said. "She seems to have no ambition. Every night, I have to bring food home for dinner. Many nights she doesn't eat with us. She has lost forty pounds over the last year. To be truthful, life is pretty miserable at our house. I feel sorry for the kids, although they get more attention than I do. But I know they must wonder what is wrong with their mother."

John just described some of the classic characteristics of depression. Unfortunately, depression does not go away simply with the passing of time. John's wife needs medical and psychological help, and without it things will get even worse. Many Christians don't understand depression. They think it is a spiritual problem. While it may have a spiritual dimension, it is often rooted in physical, and emotional imbalance.

Identifying the Problem
What do you do when your spouse is depressed? First, you must get information. It is helpful to think of three categories of depression. First, depression may be the by-product of a physical illness. When we are physically sick, our minds and emotions move into a depressed state. We temporarily check out. It's nature's way of protecting you from constant anxiety about your physical condition.

The second kind of depression is called situational depression or reactive depression. It is a depression that grows out of a particularly painful situation in life. Many of these experiences involve a sense of loss: the loss of a job, the loss of a child to college, or loss of a friendship.

The third category is depression rooted in some biochemical disorder. It is a physical disease, and must be treated with medication. Visit the library or search the web and learn about depression. It's the first step in helping your spouse.

Finding the Solution
The healthiest road of treatment involves an honest and in-depth evaluation of three elements: physical, psychological, and spiritual. Seriously depressed persons will seldom take initiative to help themselves. As a caring spouse you must insist that they get help. Depression is not an incurable disease. Even those who have been depressed for months or sometimes years can find relief with the proper treatment.

Long term depression can be devastating to a marriage. If your spouse has been depressed for more than a few weeks, I urge you to take action.









Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Relationships Love Language ~ Getting Rid of Bitterness ~ Unexpressed Anger ~ Uncontrolled Expression of Anger

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What's Your Love Language?


Relationships Love Language ~ Getting Rid of Bitterness ~ Unexpressed Anger ~ Uncontrolled Expression of Anger



Getting Rid of Bitterness
Dr. Gary Chapman

Have you ever heard the expression don't get angry get even? Well, there may be a better way to deal with that unexpressed anger than vengeance. Let's look at two negative ways and one positive way of responding to anger and bitterness.

First, there is unexpressed anger; holding it inside and letting it smolder. When we do this, the bitterness becomes like a malignant cancer slowly destroying the fiber of life. Then, there is uncontrolled expression of anger. Like an explosion it destroys everything in its range. Such an outburst is like an emotional heart attack and may produce permanent damage.

There is a better way. It begins by saying to yourself, "I'm extremely angry and bitter about what my spouse has done. But I will not allow their wrong to destroy me and I will not attempt to destroy them. I will turn my spouse over to God who is just, and I will release my anger and bitterness to God." The Biblical challenge is "get rid of anger and bitterness," (Col. 3:8).

Confess to God that you have held your anger inside and that you are bitter. Ask His forgiveness for handling your anger in a sinful way. Then confess your bitterness to your spouse and ask forgiveness. Find a counselor or trusted friend who can help you release your spouse and your anger to God, in order to live a constructive life in the future. Let me admit that a one time confession of bitterness may not eliminate all hostile feelings. If the bitterness has been there a long time, the hostile feelings may die slowly.

Paul said, "Never pay back evil for evil... Never take your own revenge, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, 'Vengeance is mine, I will repay,' says the Lord" (Romans 12:17,19). 


You may have been greatly wronged by your spouse, but it is not your responsibility to punish them for their sin. They must face God with their sin, and God is a just judge. Verbal retaliation accomplishes no constructive purpose. Seeking the good of your mate, which the Bible calls love, has much potential for good.






































 




























































































































































































































































































































Relationships Love Language ~ JESUS Enters Jerusalem ~ Holy Week ~ Jesus Washes the Disciples’ Feet

Relationships Love Language ~ JESUS Enters Jerusalem ~ Holy Week ~ Jesus Washes the Disciples’ Feet
Jesus Washes the Disciples’ Feet ~ Last Supper. The Passover with the Disciples. Institution of the Lord’s Supper. Judas to Betray Jesus. Matthew 26, Mark 14, Luke 22 ESV. Jesus Washes the Disciples’ Feet. ....12 When he had washed their feet and put on his outer garments and resumed his place, he said to them, "Do you understand what I have done to you? 13 You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. 14 If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15 For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you....John 13:1-20 ESV.Christ Reasoning with Peter, by Giotto di Bondone (Cappella Scrovegni a Padova).

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Tuesday, February 8, 2011~ Relationships Love Language ~ Biblical Inspiration ~ The Inspirational