Intentional Tuesdays

The Steel Standard: Lessons from a 4-Year Old

conflict Jan 26, 2021

What can we all learn from a four-year old?

I once had the pleasure of riding 90 minutes in the car with my little buddy William. He'd turned four the week prior and wasn't afraid to tell you about it.

But there was something William loved to do more than telling, and showing, his age. He loved asking questions. At first, it seemed normal. Then it was cute. Then it was a bit annoying. Then it was driving me batshit crazy.

How could this kid have so many questions? Everything I say receives the same response ... why? It some point, I began asking myself the same question. Unwilling to meet defeat at the hands of a toddler, I resorted to the wildcard that every adult has in their pocket ... just because.

Okay Mike, that's a nice story, but what's the point?

Suppose you see a negative post on social media about a politician that you dislike. What is your immediate reaction? In a perfect world, you'd analyze the information to test. Does this make sense? Is this source credible? If so,...

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Turning Straw into Steel

I love a good debate, but I think that one of my biggest areas for personal growth is my ability to preserve the relationship while advocating my position.  I often find myself so wrapped up in making my case that I forget I am engaged in conversation with another human.  My attention is consumed by ensuring the soundness of my argument rather than the soundness of the connection between us.  Although I may end up getting the conversational upper-hand, I do so at the cost of damaging the relationship.  Why do I allow this to happen?  It happens because I am choosing the wrong mode of discourse.  I am using debate even though I rarely find myself in a situation that requires true debate.  Normal, everyday situations require dialog.  These two words, debate and dialog, sound alike but they are very different both in their form and in their purpose.  Debate is a formal argument, the point of which is to persuade, although the target of your...

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