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Note: Cross posted from STATIC Youth’s Weblog.

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altarboy2 Friday was a god day for me, I had time to catch up on some of my reading. I subscribe to 3 different Catholic newspapers and 3 different magazines, two Catholic and one political. The problem is time, when do I have time to read them all. Well Friday night I was able to slam through all the newspapers, than Saturday a new one arrived… UGH! But such is life.

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This is take from an online article in Time magazine…..

 

Time.com

  • By EBEN HARRELL Eben Harrell 29 mins ago

A professor of psychology at the University of Massachusetts, Robert Feldman has spent most of his career studying the role deception plays in human relationships. His most recent book, The Liar in Your Life: How Lies Work and What They Tell Us About Ourselves, lays out in stark terms just how prevalent lying has become. He talked to TIME about why we all need a dose of honesty.

What are the main findings of your research?
Not only do we lie frequently, but we lie without even thinking about it. People lie while they are getting acquainted at an average of three times in a 10-minute period. Participants in my studies actually are not aware that they are lying that much until they watch videos of their interactions.

One of the reasons people get away with so much lying, your research suggests, is that we are all essentially dupes. Why do we believe so many lies?
This is what I call the liar’s advantage. We are not very good at detecting deception in other people. When we are trying to detect honesty, we look at the wrong kinds of nonverbal behaviors and we misinterpret them. The problem is that there is no direct correlation between someone’s nonverbal behavior and their honesty. "Shiftiness" could also be the result of being nervous, angry, distracted or sad. Even trained interrogators [aren’t] able to detect deception at [high] rates. You might as well flip a coin to determine if someone is being honest.

What’s more, a lot of the time we don’t want to detect lies in other people. We are unwilling to put forward the cognitive effort to suspect the veracity of statements, and we aren’t motivated to question people when they tell us things we want to hear. When we ask someone, "How are you doing?" and they say "fine," we really don’t want to know what their aches and pains are. So we take "fine" at face value. (Read a TIME story on ground rules for telling lies)

Do you feel deception is a particularly relevant topic to our society?
We are living in a time and culture in which it’s easier to lie than it has been in the past. The message that pervades society is that it’s okay to lie; you can get away with it. One of the things I found in my research is that when you confront people with their lies they very rarely display remorse. Lying is not seen as being morally reprehensible in any strong way.

You can make the assumption that because it often makes social interactions go more smoothly, lying is okay. But there is a cost to even seemingly benign lies. If people are always telling you that you look terrific and you did a great job on that presentation, there’s no way to have an accurate understanding of yourself. Lies put a smudge on an interaction, and if it’s easy to lie to people in minor ways it becomes easier to lie in bigger ways.

You say in the book that recent DNA evidence suggests that 10% of people have fathers other than the men they believe conceived them. So is lying pretty widespread in our intimate lives, too?
Research shows we lie less to people that we are close to. But when we do, they tend to be the bigger types of lies. And the fallout is greater if the deception is discovered.

You show how lying is a social skill. Does that mean it’s part of an evolutionary legacy?
I don’t think lying is genetically programmed. We learn to lie. We teach our kids to be effective liars by modeling deceitful behavior.

In your book you offer a way to cut back on lies. What’s the "AHA! Remedy?"
AHA! stands for active honesty assessment. We need to be aware of the possibility that people are lying to us, and we need to demand honesty in other people. Otherwise we will get a canned affirmation. At the same time, we have to demand honesty of ourselves. We have to be the kind of people who don’t tell white lies. We don’t have to be cruel and totally blunt, but we have to convey information honestly. The paradox here is that if you are 100% honest and blunt, you will not be a popular person. Honesty is the best policy. But it’s not a perfect policy.

(more…)

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This was sent to me from a friend in India, not sure who the original author is, he never stated it… But I thought I would share it…

Positive words.bmpI remember my dad teaching me the power of language  at a very young age. Not only did my dad understand that specific words affect our mental pictures, but he understood words are a powerful programming factor in lifelong success. 

One particularly interesting event occurred when I was eight. As a kid, I was always climbing trees, poles, and literally hanging around upside down from the rafters of our lake house. So, it came to no surprise for my dad to find me at the top of a 30-foot tree swinging back and forth. My little eight-year-old brain didn’t realize the tree could break or I could get hurt. I just thought it was fun to be up so high.

My older cousin, Tammy, was also in the same tree. She was hanging on the first big limb, about ten feet below me. Tammy’s mother also noticed us at the exact time my dad did. About that time a huge gust of wind came over the tree. I could hear the leaves start to rattle and the tree begin to sway. I remember my dad’s voice over the wind yell, "Bart, Hold on tightly." So I did. The next thing I know, I heard Tammy screaming at the top of her lungs, laying flat on the ground. She had fallen out of the tree.

I scampered down the tree to safety. My dad later told me why she fell and I did not. Apparently, when Tammy’s mother felt the gust of wind, she yelled out, "Tammy, don’t fall!" And Tammy did. fall.     

My dad then explained to me that the mind has a very difficult time processing a negative image. In fact, people who rely on internal pictures cannot see a negative at all. In order for Tammy to process the command of not falling, her nine-year-old brain had to first imagine falling, then try to tell the brain not to do what it just imagined.

Whereas, my eight-year-old brain instantly had an internal image of me hanging on tightly. This concept is especially useful when you are attempting to break a habit or set a goal. You can’t visualize not doing something. The only way to properly visualize not doing something is to actually find a word for what you want to do and visualize that.

For example, when I was thirteen years old, I played for my junior high school football team. I tried so hard to be good, but I just couldn’t get it together at that age. I remember hearing the words run through my head as I was running out for a pass, "Don’t drop it!" Naturally, I dropped the ball.     

My coaches were not skilled enough to teach us proper "self-talk." They just thought some kids could catch and others couldn’t. I’ll never make it pro, but I’m now a pretty good Sunday afternoon football player, because all my internal dialogue is positive and encourages me to win. I wish my dad had coached me playing football instead of just climbing trees. I might have had a longer football career.           

Here is a very easy demonstration to teach your kids and your friends the power of a toxic vocabulary. Ask them to hold a pen or pencil. Hand it to them. Now, follow my instructions carefully. Say to them, "Okay, try to drop the pencil." Observe what they do.

Most people release their hands and watch the pencil hit the floor. You respond, "You weren’t paying attention. I said TRY to drop the pencil. Now please do it again." Most people then pick up the pencil and pretend to be in excruciating pain while their hand tries but fails to drop the pencil.   

The point is made.         

If you tell your brain you will "give it a try," you are actually telling your brain to fail. I have a "no try" rule in my house and with everyone I interact with. Either people will do it or they won’t. Either they will be at the party or they won’t. I’m brutal when people attempt to lie to me by using the word try.

Do they think I don’t know they are really telegraphing to the world they have no intention of doing it but they want me to give them brownie points for pretended effort? You will never hear the words "I’ll try" come out of my mouth unless I’m teaching this concept in a seminar. 

If you "try" and do something, your unconscious mind has permission not to succeed. If I truly can’t make a decision I will tell the truth. "Sorry John. I’m not sure if I will be at your party or not. I’ve got an outstanding commitment. If that falls through, I will be here. Otherwise, I will not. Thanks for the invite."             

People respect honesty. So remove the word "try" from your vocabulary. My dad also told me that psychologists claim it takes seventeen positive statements to offset one negative statement. I have no idea if it is true, but the logic holds true. It might take up to seventeen compliments to offset the emotional damage of one harsh criticism.           

These are concepts that are especially useful when raising children.

Ask yourself how many compliments you give yourself daily versus how many criticisms. Heck, I know you are talking to yourself all day long. We all have internal voices that give us direction.         

So, are you giving yourself the 17:1 ratio or are you shortchanging yourself with toxic self-talk like, " I’m fat. Nobody will like me. I’ll try this diet. I’m not good enough. I’m so stupid. I’m broke, etc. etc."   

If our parents can set a lifetime of programming with one wrong statement, imagine the kind of programming you are doing on a daily basis with your own internal dialogue. Here is a list of Toxic Vocabulary words.   

Notice when you or other people use them. 

But: Negates any words that are stated before it.               

Try: Presupposes failure.     

If: Presupposes that you may not.   

Might: It does nothing definite. It leaves options for your listener.

Would Have: Past tense that draws attention to things that didn’t actually happen.

Should Have: Past tense that draws attention to things that didn’t actually happen (and implies guilt.)         

Could Have: Past tense that draws attention to things that didn’t actually happen but the person tries to take credit as if it did happen.             

Can’t/Don’t: These words force the listener to focus on exactly the opposite of what you want. This is a classic mistake that parents and coaches make without knowing the damage of this linguistic error.       

Examples:           

Toxic phrase: "Don’t drop the ball!"   

Likely result: Drops the ball     

Better language: "Catch the ball!"   

Toxic phrase: "You shouldn’t watch so much television."             

Likely result: Watches more television.   

Better language: "I read too much television makes people stupid. You might find yourself turning that TV off and picking up one of those books more often!"   

Exercise: Take a moment to write down all the phrases you use on a daily basis or any Toxic self-talk that you have noticed yourself

using. Write these phrases down so you will begin to catch yourself as they occur and change them.

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Ask yourself this one question, and than respond truthfully and I guarantee you will change your life forever.

Can a statement like that truly be true? Can one question alter your whole life, make that much of an impact on you that your life is totally different, that you charge a new course?

What sort of question must it be? Is it a question for one of your ancestors of Greek or Roman descent? A question of a great sage or from one of the eastern religions know for deep thoughts. A question from Buda or Krishna maybe, or did it come from Jesus or from one of the prophets?

Or maybe the question really doesn’t exist, maybe there is no one question that will change your life, maybe it’s all useless, we should just give up now, and not even search for the question.

Ask yourself this one question, and than respond truthfully and I guarantee you will change your life forever.

I know the question, and I will share it with you now, this one simple question will, if you allow it to, change your life forever. The rules are simple:

1. Read the question as it is, do not try to read anything in to it, there is no hidden message or meaning.

2. You must be open minded about the question.

3. You must give it some thought, this is not a question you can just simple put down any old response to.

4. You must be honest, you can not respond the way you think others want you to, you must respond with the truth as you know it at this moment.

5. You must be willing to take ownership of the responses, the only way to use the responses for agents of change, is to own them.

Ok, now that you have the rules, and you agree to them, we can move on, you will need to write the question down, it’s part of the ownership thing, by writing it down, in your own hand writing, it becomes yours.

Here is the question:

What really matters to you?

 

That’s it, that is the one question that will change your life. But remember, you have to allow it time to sink in, you have to give it deep thought. This is not a quick response question, but rather one of slow deep thinking.

Once you have your list or paragraphs or statements or what ever you decided to write, now comes the hard part. Now comes the part were you must look at that list and ask the following questions about it:

1. Is it (the feeling, action, goal) a positive?

2. Does it (feeling, action, goal) create a better world?

3. Will it help others?

4. Is it affirming?

The questions above a re designed to help you align your responses to a life changing action.  Example, if what really matters to me is money,than how is it a positive, how is it useful for a better world how will it help others and how will it be affirming to me?

To make a difference in our own lives, we must be willing to make a difference in the lives of others. No man (or woman) lives in a void, our actions or lack of actions affects the world around us, to truly become more we must be willing and able to affect others around us, in a positive and uplifting way.

The question “What really matters to you” is not a question about you, but really it is a question that will help you define your interactions with the world around you.

Good luck with the question, it truly can change your life.

Paul

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The other day I wrote a blog concerning a TV program I watched about the Knight Templar’s. The basic idea of what I was writing was the fact that the TV show spent 10 to 20 minutes talking about how mean and evil the Knights were, yet gave just a fleeting mention to the fact that they were protecting and defending the Holy Land from attach from the Muslims.

I found the responses I received interesting, I posted this blog on my STATIC Youth  blog site, but also on my Linked In site in the Catholic Group I belong to. The STATIC Youth site received no comments, but the Catholic Group on Linked in, wow! I was called a Liberal Catholic, told to go to confession and basically my faith call in to question because I dared to say that the Knights may have done some bad things.

I responded to this person for a little bit, but I have decided it matters not what I say to him, he is just dead set on saving my soul, regardless as to what I have to say. It’s almost like tossing a life ring to someone on dry land. Now please understand, I am not saying I don’t need salvation, because I do, but what I am getting at is I have explained to this person, several times, that I am not what he thinks I am, nor and I attaching the Catholic Church. But that is just adding facts to it, and he will have none of that!

It did make me stop and thing a bit, here I am, online, have a major discussion with someone I don’t even know, being accused of anti-Catholic views, and basically  being told I am not a Catholic at all. How is it, that a person feels they can make such statements concerning someone they never met nor has he read anything else I have written, and based on his responses to what I have said to him, he will not read other things I have written. Have we gotten to a point were people feel free to attach you, to call in to question your convictions over the net. Have we allowed ourselves to be fooled in to thinking that we have gained knowledge of a persons soul or being over the net?

In some ways, yes we have, look at all the so call “long distance” relationships started via chat rooms, or people who claim friendships to IM friends they never had met. We have allowed the simple task of typing to each other replace face to face, we have allowed the net with all its cool and amazing possibilities to overshadow human contact. So in a way, I have lead myself in to this little mess, but contributing to it. Such is life…

Now, I will continue to post, and I will continue to dialog with others on the net, and yes i will continue to add people to my “friends” list, I just found it interesting, that’s all.

Paul

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It seems I have gone blog crazy, I have 3 blogs going now, this one, You can be new, and two others, STATIC Youth and Faith and Life. The Faith and Life blog is the latest blog I have started. Each blog had a purpose, each one helps me examine a different part of my make up.

Each blog represents a side of me that I feel in need to dive in to a little bit more deeply, but at times all 3 cross over each other. For example my new blog, Faith and Life is the more political side of me. But readers of this blog or my STATIC Youth blog will know that I have made political statements here. Were-as this blog, You can be new, is more of a blog for my self-help look deep with in you side of me, but that has also spilled over in to my STATIC Youth blog and I am sure it will slip in to my new Faith and Life blog before long also. The STATIC Youth blog is my Catholic faith blog, allowing me to share my faith with the world, but as you know my Catholic faith has entered in to discussions here and it is part of my Faith and Life blog also.

I say all this not to just shamelessly promote my 3 blog, but to illustrate a point. We are made up of different part, but each part is not separate from each other. I have three interest that truly define me, my faith, my need to help others and my political values, each is unique but each is also me. I would not be the same person I am today if anyone of them were not part of my being.

Our DNA defines us, our eye color, hair and body shape, our parents mold us into good little people, teaching us moral and our faith and society leans onus to conform to the norms of the times. But in the end it is us who truly defines us, we choose to follow our parents lead or if we will bend in to social norms, it is us, our individuality, that creates new possibilities for ourselves.

All three parts of me, represented by my blogs, help to shape me, guide me and in some ways define me, but only if I allow them to. My parents help create them, my faith help shaped them and the social/economics of society help bend them in to what we see today. But ultimately I allowed them to.

How can I say this, what proof do I have that in the end it is my choice. I have 4 case studies, my brothers and sisters, all raised by the same two parents, all raised with in the same faith and similar social/economics as me, each of us are different, we each chose how we would allow each force mold us.

So yes I am at times divide between my Faith, political and self reliance sides of me. Sometimes what I write in one blog may seem like it is in opposition to what I wrote in another blog. But in truth it can not be in opposition with anything else I write, it is just taken out of context. When I write purely for one blog, not allowing my other 2 sides to enter in to the conversation I create a conflict of sorts. This conflict is internal, wanting to establish the links between all three major forces in my life. This is a choice I make, not allowing the overflow of the other two in to what I am writing. I want to allow myself the freedom to dive into the topic unhindered by my own confines, to allow the organic growth of the thought, and than at a latter time see how it fits in to my over all person. No conflict, only growth.

So please if you get a chance check out my other two blogs, let me know what you think, and tell your friends to give me a read, who knows maybe someone somewhere will like what I wrote, they may even think I am smart. But I am not holding my breath for that, I don’t write for others, but for myself.

Paul

STATIC Youth  —  Faith and Life

 

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