Dealing With a Problem That Hounds You

Talking about a problem incessantly doesn’t lead to a solution.

Psychiatrists and psychologists know that even years of counseling may not lead a person to get beyond what bothers or gnaws at them.

Don’t waste time or energy on something that will bring you more pain.

Take the effort that is being poured into continued frustration and turn it into something that will bring you gain.

Do you have a dysfunctional family that consumes your efforts to love and help them? Redirect that negative energy to something that is more rewarding – teaching, volunteering, mentoring others.

Your employer is always cutting you out of meetings and the planning chain to your endless frustration? Take the skill that they are not using and redeploy it to a startup, a part-time venture or a charitable cause.

The one thing that all humans have is energy and the ability to focus that energy to things that make us happy and successful is absolutely the way around a nagging problem that hounds you.

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Artificial Intelligence

Did you see that Amazon is going to work on making Alexa smart enough to deal with suicidal patrons?

Ours is an artificial intelligence world – robots, Siri and Alexa on Amazon’s Echo.

So we’re now leaving suicide prevention up to artificial intelligence.

Suicides especially among young people are at the highest level ever and some blame their connected, digital world as a contributing factor.

We can’t go back.

Artificial intelligence is here to stay and so it is appropriate that these devices get smart enough to handle complex issues of the human condition.

But people need to get smarter, too.

Only real live people can sense when a person is in need

Learn to listen in a non-judgmental way

Be there for people 24/7 the way Alexa stands ready for the next command

When our phones get smarter and more prevalent, that’s our call to match them and raise them by living in the present totally focused on others.

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Crowdsourcing Friends

We’ve got Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat, What’s App, chat and endless ways to communicate with people without having to be there in the present.

Obsessed with “likes” and “follows” – feeding the monster with new and creative posts.

This plays out into direct contact with real people face-to-face in crowdsourcing situations.

At the country club – group contact.

The pool – cover many people in the time you would have to spend on one.

Girl’s (or guy’s) night out – group therapy in one place with everyone together.

Anywhere we don’t have to be one-on-one focused on an individual in real time.

Crowdsourcing friends is an avoidance of such contact and allows less significant contact with more people – kind of like the principles behind online social media.

If you have made one real friend in life, you are a special person.

If you have one real friend who cares about you enough to focus on your life, you have been blessed many times over.

You’re not a real friend if you’re absent and social media doesn’t count.

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Distracted Living

7 out of 10 people basically between 18-34 prefer to text rather than talk according to a new LivePerson study of 4,000 in Western nations in that age group.

Large majorities in that age group think it is fine to use their phones during dinner (42%) or in the middle of a conversation (28%).

You don’t need a survey to know how distracted we are becoming.

But parents are teaching the wrong thing by example.

The parent in the doctor’s waiting room buried in the phone invites their children to do the same.

Taking a call during dinner by an adult is the green light kids need to mimic the same behavior.

Endlessly checking the phone to see if you missed something is a rehearsal for your offspring to also do it.

No child under teenage years should have a phone (and that includes parental excuses that they need to check on their whereabouts and safety).

A screen is not a sitter even though most cars are now wired for backseat video.

What parents do does matter.

There is a new Comcast commercial running that shows a mom pausing the Wi-Fi during dinner to the chagrin of her children and husband that hits close to home.

We don’t have to wait for robots to take over — we are creating them.

Balance the phone as a tool not a way of life.

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Consoling Others

When we say there are no words that can express my feelings, we are speaking the truth.

What people facing adversity need is someone to listen to them not speak well intended empty words.

The depth of how long and how intense to listen is in direct proportion to how long and intense your friendship is.

Even poor listeners can rise to the occasion and look the other person in the eyes and just listen.

It doesn’t even take a major crisis or loss to console another.  Just lend them your ear and listen.

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