The Power of Believing In People

Self-doubt is one of the causes of failure in people’s lives. Many people are unsure of themselves, and often need the belief of others to pull through. “Believe in yourself” is easier said than done – generally, when the rubber meets the road, people struggle with it.

You would think that money, success, or fame would stop people from doubting themselves, but this is not quite the case. Many successful people and leaders are insecure and crippled by self-doubt. My point is: there is a huge significant need for belief support. Often, we need someone to believe in us for success to happen. So, what does belief in people do for them? Here are three benefits.

It Gives Unusual Courage: I have seen this work in my coaching practice. My clients do not doubt that I strongly believe in them – I communicate it. Consequently, they get the boost to achieve phenomenal results. I have witnessed the unusual courage that people get when they are certain that someone truly believes in them – it’s magical. Self-belief is one thing, but another’s belief gives you extra strength to keep going.

In life, it is important to believe in yourself, but equally vital when someone believes in you and is willing to give you a chance. How many teams now suffer because the leader did not believe in the team members? How many children now live dysfunctional lives because their primary caregivers didn’t express belief in them? Our lives are interconnected, and self-belief alone isn’t enough. Unusual courage grows when someone (or group) truly sees you, believes in you, and is willing to bet on you.

It Restores Self-Esteem: Self-doubt means that you don’t believe you are enough in certain areas – your self-worth is under siege. Here, someone who believes in you would help you to see yourself differently, and gradually, you would move from “I am not enough” to “I am good enough”. When you believe in people, you help to heal inner wounds that made them think less of themselves. It restores and reaffirms their self-worth.

It Inspires Growth: True belief in people gives them clarity of purpose, which in turn, creates the desire for continuous growth and improvement. In this case, people become excited about the next level and take steps to achieve it. The fact that they know that you are rooting for them gives strength to move forward. Belief in people gives them the emotional anchor and stability required for sustainable success in life.

Source: The power of believing in people

Critics by Mark Goulston

Before you say anything, you need to know that I live on the top floor of my building and there’s no access to the roof,” Jack said, then gave me a “gotcha” smile, as if to test me on what I was going to say. At that point, I asked Jack what prior psychiatrists had said. He told me that they had said such things as “That sounds frustrating,” “Perhaps that’s part of your condition that I’d like to help you with” and “That may be something we can treat and make better.”

I then thought to myself, do I want to help him? Or do I want to continue to offer him a sympathetic, compassionate and yet clinical reality check, which it seemed the other psychiatrists had offered? Yet, here he was with me. I decided on the former and looked him in his challenging eyes and replied, “Jack,” to which he responded, “Yes?” I then calmly said, “I believe you.”

He paused for a moment, stopped smiling and began to cry, then sob almost like a feral cat. I thought to myself, “Great, you just unleashed a flood of paranoid delusions.” I waited patiently, believing he would eventually finish, which he did after five minutes. When he stopped, I asked him, “What was that about, Jack?” He gathered himself, and with completely bloodshot eyes and a different smile said, “It does sound frickin’ crazy!”

I then smiled in recognition of his realizing this, and we went on to have a productive psychotherapeutic relationship. What had happened? Daniel Goleman, who’s credited with identifying and explaining the importance of emotional intelligence, as well as others, identified three types or levels of empathy: cognitive, emotional and compassionate. Cognitive empathy can be described as “knowing how the other person feels and what they might be thinking.”

Having emotional empathy is “when you feel physically along with the other person, as though their emotions were contagious.” Finally, compassionate empathy is when “we not only understand a person’s predicament and feel with them, but are spontaneously moved to help.” I believe that I exhibited validational empathy with Jack, which went beyond the other three levels by telling him that I believed him.

You may think that I was taking a chance by doing that — not to mention being dishonest if another part of me had heard Jack refute his own belief disguised as a challenge prior to my response. I thought that as well. And I’m not suggesting or advocating that any of you state untruths in an effort to connect with people who say things that you don’t believe.

Nevertheless, the fact remains that telling Jack I believed him appeared to be a level of empathy that got through to him, causing him to feel less alone in his paranoid delusion and to get a sense of relief because of that. This, in turn, enabled him to self-identify and accept that he was being delusional.

Therefore, I’ll leave it to you whether there might be occasions when you’re at a standstill with another person and any of the conventional levels of empathy — cognitive, emotional or compassionate — might not be effective. If that’s the case, could using validational empathy be an instance of the end justifying the means — of breaking through to that person?

One approach that you might be comfortable with is called mediated catharsis, by which you don’t exactly tell the person you believe what they’re saying. Instead, you align with it and exaggerate it for empathic emphasis, saying something like, “If I were you, I’d be really upset and it would make me nuts. What do you think you should do about it?” When you do that, they feel you’re not judging or disagreeing with them but instead are validating what they’re feeling — without telling them whether you believe them or not — and then moving them toward solutions.

Here’s a taste of it. If I were you, reading this article, I might be saying to myself, “Yeah, many times when I’ve tried to be empathic, it didn’t work. So, I’ve stopped trying. But I need to do something because the situation with a person is getting worse. Oh, well, maybe validating what they’re going through in the way you suggested might work.” Why not give it a try?

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Multitasking Is a Lie: Women Aren’t Doing More in Less Time, They’re Just Doing More

You’ve definitely seen the high-achieving multitasking heroine. She’s making dinner with one hand, typing with the other, on a call with the third, perhaps holding a baby with the fourth. She’s a multi-armed stock photo, or an octopus lady photoshopped on a magazine cover.

You know her. Maybe you are her. For many ambitious women, the ability to master multitasking was supposedly a path to success. The irony is that it actually made many women feel scattered, overworked, and underappreciated — all while getting passed over for promotions.

Despite growing awareness that the multitasking superwoman is an elaborate fabrication duping women into doing more for less, it’s not easy to escape the pull of shared cultural expectations, explains Dr. Laurie Weingart, Professor of Organizational Behavior at the Carnegie Mellon Tepper School of Business.

“By default, we turn to women when we need non-promotable tasks done,” Weingart said. “What happens is that on the flipside, we internalize this role, and women are often more likely to volunteer and say ‘yes’ to doing them when asked. It’s a self-perpetuating cycle, and then we say ‘yes’ because of the fear of violating the expectation.”

The Myth of Multitasking

The concept of multitasking has been around since the 1960s when IBM first used it to describe computer functionalities. Since then, it’s become part of our workplace lexicon, going from a nifty trick enabled by technology (sending emails and talking on the phone at the same time was once revolutionary) to productivity optimization strategy to a cringey buzzword. And it was women, questionable research suggested, who were simply better at doing lots of things at once.

Then came the plot twist: multitasking actually diminishes productivity. The brain can shift between tasks, but it can’t parallel process. Shocking! The American Psychological Association reported that shifting between tasks can cost as much as 40% in productivity, and other studies suggest that “media multitasking” (listening to music and simultaneously checking email) diminishes the ability to focus attention.

Despite research showing that double X chromosomes do not inherently make women better at performing multiple tasks simultaneously (women and men are equally bad at multitasking), the mighty multitasking woman trope persists.

If women have bought into the belief (consciously or not) that they must do it all at once, they’re often focused on others, not exclusively on their own ambitions. It creates a vicious cycle: women take on more, but fall behind in ways that count, then must keep taking on more to prove themselves, again.

Office housekeeping, organization busywork, or the mental load that’s part of domestic labor or child-rearing are one way women tend to multitask. Another is by getting saddled with non-promotable tasks, which Weingart defines as work that women do that helps their organizations but does nothing to advance their careers.

“These are usually shorter-term assignments that need to be done quickly. Can you help with that, cover for me here — these tasks are the interrupters, as opposed to the work you’re hired to do and is longer term and requires that depth,” said Weingart, who co-wrote The No Club: Putting a Stop to Women’s Dead-End Work. “

These tasks tend to be less tightly tied to the organization’s bottom line, and they tend to be behind the scenes and less visible. When you define it that way, it’s much more than office housework or taking notes or getting the birthday cake.”

“What we often assume is that women are asked to do non-promotable tasks because we’re better at them or we enjoy doing them,” said Weingart. “What our research shows is that it’s not what’s driving this.”

In her research, Weingart found that at one firm, women consultants were working 200 more hours than their male colleagues. For younger women consultants, the tradeoff was between high-value work and other tasks, so when they came up for partner, they had less billable hours despite doing more work. For senior women, the issue was different.

“What’s interesting is that the senior women weren’t making a trade-off; the time was coming out of their personal life. So they were working longer hours, and they were putting in a month of extra work above male colleagues.”

The implications run deep. When multitasking pulls focus, it also erodes the ability to enter the deep thinking state of flow, or the optimal state of mind at which we feel and perform our best. Add in distractions of modernity — from Slack to email to the daycare group chat blowing up about spirit day — and for many women, this state of productive flow is elusive.

“Especially for people who are working longer hours, you see a lot of stress, burnout and negativity in terms of health and wellbeing,” she added.

Monotasking Is the New Multitasking

Now, after years of leaning into multitasking, many women are realizing that doing simultaneous tasks isn’t part of the promotion track. It’s the path to burnout. This awareness is the start of helping “women step back and figure out how to improve,” says Weingart.

Before committing to a task, Weingart suggests determining whether it’s of high value to your organization. If you still feel compelled to do it, try to understand your motivation for saying yes. Sometimes it’s guilt or fear of letting others down.

Then think about your performance: What criteria are you evaluated on? What’s your skill set? What do you bring to the organization that sets you apart? And does this task relate?

Remember that you might be better at non-promotable tasks because you do them over and over, not because you were born that way. It’s a feature, not a bug, of a patriarchal system, and it’s always easier to ask the person who will say yes.

The answer is easier said than done. Just say no. After all, monotasking is the new multitasking.

By Alizah Salario

Source: Chief | Multitasking Is a Lie: Women Aren’t Doing More in Less Time, They’re Just Doing More

Doing more than one task at a time, especially more than one complex task, takes a toll on productivity. Although that shouldn’t surprise anyone who has talked on the phone while checking E-mail or talked on a cell phone while driving, the extent of the problem might come as a shock. Psychologists who study what happens to cognition (mental processes) when people try to perform more than one task at a time have found that the mind and brain were not designed for heavy-duty multitasking.

Psychologists tend to liken the job to choreography or air-traffic control, noting that in these operations, as in others, mental overload can result in catastrophe. Multitasking can take place when someone tries to perform two tasks simultaneously, switch . from one task to another, or perform two or more tasks in rapid succession. To determine the costs of this kind of mental “juggling,” psychologists conduct task-switching experiments.

By comparing how long it takes for people to get everything done, the psychologists can measure the cost in time for switching tasks. They also assess how different aspects of the tasks, such as complexity or familiarity, affect any extra time cost of switching. In the mid-1990s, Robert Rogers, PhD, and Stephen Monsell, D.Phil, found that even when people had to switch completely predictably between two tasks every two or four trials, they were still slower on task-switch than on task-repeat trials.

Moreover, increasing the time available between trials for preparation reduced but did not eliminate the cost of switching. There thus appear to be two parts to the switch cost — one attributable to the time taken to adjust the mental control settings (which can be done in advance it there is time), and another part due to competition due to carry-over of the control settings from the previous trial (apparently immune to preparation).

Surprisingly, it can be harder to switch to the more habitual of two tasks afforded by a stimulus. For example, Renata Meuter, PhD, and Alan Allport, PhD, reported in 1999 that if people had to name digits in their first or second language, depending on the color of the background, as one might expect they named digits in their second language slower than in their first when the language repeated. But they were slower in their first language when the language changed.

In experiments published in 2001, Joshua Rubinstein, PhD, Jeffrey Evans, PhD, and David Meyer, PhD, conducted four experiments in which young adults switched between different tasks, such as solving math problems or classifying geometric objects. For all tasks, the participants lost time when they had to switch from one task to another.

As tasks got more complex, participants lost more time. As a result, people took significantly longer to switch between more complex tasks. Time costs were also greater when the participants switched to tasks that were relatively unfamiliar. They got up to speed faster when they switched to tasks they knew better….

By: APA.org

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Performance Management vs Disciplinary Action: The Differences Explained

Many employers find performance management, or instigating disciplinary action against employees for misconduct, difficult and emotionally challenging. It can be hard for an employer to distinguish between misconduct and underperformance; it’s harder still managing an employee through either a disciplinary or a performance management process with confidence.

If you are required to take management action, to help you gain confidence in your processes which in turn may help you to build a better business, we have set out some differences between performance management and disciplinary action below.

What is Disciplinary Action?

If an employee is behaving improperly in the workplace, an employer may need to raise and address concerns regarding the employee’s conduct by means of a formal disciplinary process.

Employers should introduce and implement policies and procedures in line with the expected standards of behaviour in the workplace, so employees know what is considered acceptable conduct. These policies should be made available to all employees and the employer should be consistent in applying and enforcing these policies.

Disciplinary action is usually taken to address misconduct, which is defined as behaviour in the workplace which is generally unacceptable, or contrary to the employment contract, or breaches policies and procedures of a company.

What Are Some Examples of Misconduct?

Misconduct is behaviour that is considered unacceptable and inconsistent with employee obligations or duties, i.e., a breach of company policy or procedure.

Examples include:

  • unauthorised absences (including ‘sickies’)
  • lateness
  • bad language
  • poor presentation
  • misuse of company equipment

Serious Misconduct

Serious misconduct is defined as wilful and deliberate behaviour that is inconsistent with the continuation of the employment contract or causes serious and imminent risk to the reputation, viability or profitability of the business, or health and safety of a person. Examples includes theft, fraud, and assault.

Provided a fair process is followed, serious misconduct may give an employer grounds for instant, or summary, dismissal which means the employee is not provided with notice, or payment of notice in lieu.

Employsure is here for business owners and are committed to giving every business free initial advice. If this is a topic of concern and you need to get more from your staff, call us on 1300 207 182.

Appropriate Standards of Behaviour

It needs to be noted that not all misconduct is clear and obvious. For example, getting into a fight at work is clearly and obviously inappropriate behaviour in any workplace, however, expected behaviour when using company equipment may vary from business to business. It’s important to ensure that you’ve implemented – and consistently applied – a thorough code of conduct or standards of behaviour policy in your workplace in case an employee disputes an allegation of misconduct.

What is Performance Management?

Performance management is used to address poor performance. Poor performance is where an employee is not meeting the essential requirements of their role. If an employee is underperforming – for example failing to hit KPIs or unable to meet their remit due to lack of skills an employer may consider entering the employee into a performance management process.

As part of a fair process, the employer should identify the issue e.g., where skills are lacking, inform the employee and provide further training where appropriate. The employer should put in place a plan of action to address the performance issues and to give the employee an opportunity to improve to the required standard. Performance management should only address the requirements of the role, not behaviour in the workplace; it should be clear that misconduct is not poor performance.

While part of the performance management process is similar to disciplinary procedures, it is important for employers to not conflate the two concepts. If you’d like to know more about performance management, download Employsure’s free guide. For a more confidential chat, call Employsure’s Employer Helpline for free initial advice: 1300 207 182.

What’s the Difference?

A performance management process may result in further training or a performance management plan (PMP), or performance improvement plan (PIP), an opportunity to improve their performance.

A disciplinary procedure may not result in a behavioral management plan as it is not an employer’s responsibility to ensure their employees act reasonably and appropriately in the workplace. An employer’s duty is only to remind them of their expected behaviour in the workplace and ensure they abide by it.

By : Employsure

Source: Performance Management vs Disciplinary Action: The Differences Explained – Dynamic Business

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12 Questions to Test Your Level of Self-Connection

We often try hard to stay connected to others (e.g., to friends and family). But how do we stay connected to ourselves? Self-connection is a new, important concept, one which I will discuss in the rest of this post. To do so, I describe a recent study by Klussman and colleagues on the development and validation of a new measure called the self-connection scale.

What is self-connection?

Self-connection has three components. These consist of self-awareness, self-acceptance, and self-alignment.

  • Self-awareness: Awareness of one’s internal experiences, thoughts, emotions, sensations, preferences, values, intuitions, resources, goals, etc.
  • Self-acceptance: Full acknowledgment and acceptance, without judgment, of self-relevant characteristics and experiences. And seeing them as part of us and belonging to us.
  • Self-alignment: Using self-knowledge to behave in ways that authentically reflect oneself and fulfill one’s psychological needs (e.g., autonomy).

All three components are required for self-connection. For instance, awareness without acceptance may result in self-loathing and self-harm.

Before we continue, let me note that self-connection is different from similar concepts such as authenticity and mindfulness. Authenticity is only one element of it (i.e., self-alignment).

And mindfulness is closer in meaning to a combination of self-awareness and self-acceptance, but not self-alignment. Let us take a brief look at the research by Klussman and colleagues on the measurement of self-connection.

Investigating the validity and reliability of the self-connection scale

Study 1

Sample: 308 participants; 49 percent female; average age of 38 years old; 80 percent white; 45 percent with a bachelor’s degree or higher.

Measures

  • Self-connection: A pool of 29 items
  • Authenticity: Authenticity Scale
  • Mindfulness: Cognitive and Affective Mindfulness Scale-Revised
  • Self-concept clarity: Self-Concept Clarity Scale
  • Flourishing: Flourishing Scale
  • Meaning: Presence of Meaning subscale of the Meaning in Life Questionnaire

Study 2

Sample: 164 participants; 39 percent female; average age of 36 years old; 77 percent white; 47 percent with a bachelor’s degree or higher.

Measures

  • Self-connection: The Self-Connection Scale developed in the previous investigation
  • Life satisfaction: “In general, how satisfied are you with your life?”
  • Positive and negative affect: Positive and Negative Affect Schedule
  • Anxiety and depression: Patient Health Questionnaire for Depression and Anxiety (PHQ-4)
  • CDC health measures: CDC Healthy Days Questionnaire
  • Health behaviors: Preventive Health Behaviors Scale

Study 3

Sample: 992 participants; 56 percent female; average age of 34 years old; 72 percent white; 52 percent with a bachelor’s degree or higher.

Measures

  • Anxiety and depression: PHQ-4
  • Eudaimonic well-being: Flourishing Scale and Presence of Meaning subscale of the Meaning in Life Questionnaire
  • Hedonic well-being: Positive and Negative Affect Schedule
  • Self-connection: The Self-Connection Scale
  • Self-acceptance: The self-acceptance subscale of Ryff’s Psychological Well-Being Scale
  • Self-compassion: The Self-Compassion Scale-Short Form

Results

The Self-Connection Scale demonstrated good reliability and validity. For instance, analysis of data showed it was related to similar constructs—authenticity, mindfulness, self-compassion, self-acceptance, self-concept clarity, hedonic and eudaimonic well-being—yet distinct from them.

In addition, the factor structure of the scale was confirmed.

Testing your self-connection

To determine your level of self-connection using the scale developed in the study, follow the instructions below.

Indicate your agreement with the items from the Self-Connection Scale—whether you strongly disagree (1), disagree (2), somewhat disagree (3), neither agree nor disagree (4), somewhat agree (5), agree (6), or strongly agree (7). The numbers in parentheses are the scores associated with each response. Note, Item 4 should be reverse-scored.

  1. I have a deep understanding of myself.
  2. It is easy for me to identify and understand how I am feeling in any given moment.
  3. I know myself well.
  4. I am often surprised by how little I understand myself.
  5. I try not to judge myself.
  6. When I find out things about myself that I don’t necessarily like, I try to accept those things.
  7. Even when I don’t like a feeling or belief that I have, I try to accept it as a part of myself.
  8. I can easily forgive myself for mistakes I have made.
  9. I find small ways to ensure that my life truly reflects the things that are important to me.
  10. I spend time making sure that I am acting in a way that is a reflection of my true self.
  11. I try to make sure that my actions are consistent with my values.
  12. I try to make sure that my relationships with other people reflect my values.

So, how did you do? Note: The first four scale items are related to self-awareness, the next four to self-acceptance, and the last four to self-alignment.

A high score suggests a high level of self-connection. A low score suggests you are either not self-aware, not accepting of yourself, or do not act in concert with your feelings, beliefs, values, goals, etc.

Needless to say, a high score is desirable. Indeed, research by the authors shows that self-connection is associated with a number of positive outcomes. These include positive emotions, life satisfaction, flourishing, clarity in life, and meaning in life.

People who are disconnected from themselves are more likely to experience negative emotions (e.g., sadness, anger, confusion, stress) and feel their life is unsatisfactory and has no purpose.

Takeaway

Many of us commit to staying in touch with friends and coworkers, current events, the newest trends, and the latest cutting-edge technology, but rarely commit to staying in touch with ourselves—our changing feelings, sensations, thoughts, inner resources, goals, etc.

If you belong to this group and are disconnected from yourself, there are ways to remedy the situation. Simply pause a few times during the day and check how self-connected you feel. Ask: In the last little while…

  • Have I been self-aware?
  • Have I been self-accepting?
  • Has my behavior reflected my true self?

Commit to getting to know yourself better and becoming your best friend. It may change your life.

By: Arash Emamzadeh

Arash Emamzadeh attended the University of British Columbia in Canada, where he studied genetics and psychology. He has also done graduate work in clinical psychology and neuropsychology in U.S.

Source: 12 Questions to Test Your Level of Self-Connection | Psychology Today

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Gas Prices: How Your Driving Behavior Impacts Costs at The Pump

On Thursday, the national average retail price for regular gasoline surged to another record high, hitting $4.41 per gallon.

While you may not be able to control the prices at the pump, you can control how you drive. Certain driving behaviors can actually help consumers save significantly when it comes to filling up at the pump, Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy, told FOX Business.

It’s the “easiest” thing to do when trying to combat those rising fuel costs, he said. Keep your tachometer as low as possible. De Haan says drivers should keep feet light on the gas when accelerating. The heavier you are on the accelerator, the more fuel your engine is using, he said.

The tachometer should be used as a gauge for drivers to see how much fuel they’re actually using, according to De Haan.  The tachometer measures the working speed of an engine in RPMs, or rotations per minute. It is located next to the speedometer on a vehicle’s instrument panel.

“The higher the needle goes, the more gas your engine is guzzling,” De Haan said.  The objective is to keep your tachometer as low as possible and not to “bash on the pedal,” De Haan added.

Cars crowding the turn lane into Murphy Express at Beal Parkway and Racetrack Road as gas lines started popping up at numerous gas stations around the Fort Walton Beach area in Florida. (USA Today Network via Reuters Connect / Reuters Photos)

It’s also important to keep the speed of the car under control because speeding increases fuel consumption. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, gas mileage will decrease “rapidly at speeds above 50 MPH.”

The best way to control speed is using cruise control. Although cruise control may not be useful in some congested parts of the country, like New York or Chicago. However, the feature can be “more effective and efficient than a human trying to maintain the same pressure on the gas pedal,” according to De Haan.

Maintenance: Make sure your check engine light is not on If you have a check engine light on, especially if it’s flashing, it should be checked as soon as possible. A lot of sensors on cars are critically important, but the check engine light is the “most critical,” according to De Haan. When the light is flashing, “it’s basically telling you that it’s in distress,” De Haan said.

The car essentially goes into “limp mode,” which means “the car has lost some critical sensor or something is critically wrong and … is basically using up to twice as much fuel to protect itself from catastrophic damage,” De Haan added. Another thing motorists should be checking is tire pressure.

A man checks gas prices at a gas station in Buffalo Grove, Ill., March 26, 2022. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh / AP Newsroom). When a tire loses air pressure, there is more friction between the tire and the road. That increase in friction will lower a car’s fuel efficiency, according to De Haan.

Removing access weight

Leaving heavy objects in the back seat or truck of a car can also hurt fuel efficiency. In fact, every hundred pounds will reduce fuel efficiency by one to two miles per gallon, according to De Haan.

Racks that sit on the roof of cars, typically in the summer or winter months, are also working against drivers. Those racks will “absolutely destroy the aerodynamics of your vehicle” and drive down fuel efficiency by 25 to 35%, De Haan said.

“They’re just like a mattress on your roof,” he said. “Your car is working harder to offset that object on the top of your car.”

Keep an eye on your AC this summer

When the air conditioning is running in your car, “you’re generally putting more of a load on your engine. You’ll burn a lot less fuel if you crack a window instead, according to GasBuddy. 

MYTH: It takes more gas to restart your car

That may have been true 30 years ago, “but that’s why vehicles have adopted that start stop technology,” according to De Haan. In fact, if you’re going to be sitting in traffic more than 10 seconds, it makes more sense to shut the vehicle off.

Source: Gas prices: How your driving behavior impacts costs at the pump | Fox Business

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