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Posts Tagged ‘Inner Edge

We’ve been trained to think that we know what must be done

One of the hardest concepts to grasp in positive existential psychology, is the idea of open endedness.  It is an anathema to the soul of a psychologist trained in positivist thinking and to a manager trained in “gap techniques”.

In the old school, we are supposed to define a goal or an outcome and achieve what we say we are going to achieve.  We are supposed to be competent and confident that what we say will work, will work.  We are supposed to be able to make more things work than our neighbor.

Yet, the most important skill is to tolerate uncertainty

David Whyte talks of frontier conversations where we do not know the outcome and of places where we are not certain of our competence.

We need to change our methods of selection to allow for not knowing what must be done

If we insist on defining things as competencies, then we need to check whether the people joining our organization can tolerate being in a situation where they do not know if they understand or will ever understand.

Equally, if tolerating uncertainty is a competence important to the organization, the interviewer needs to be in a likewise situation.

A new definition of a good selection interview

Great! Two people don’t know what they are doing.  So my definition of a good interview is when I have learned something from the person I am interviewing!

Here is a quotation of David Whyte reprinted by Inner Edge.

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Sometimes the glass is half-full .  .  . of poison

When we are faced with brutality, cruelty, perversion, etc., it is NOT wise to dismiss it in with superficial optimism. Sometimes the glass is not just half-full, it is half-full of poison. Realism is important.

Real life can be awfully depressing

Unfortunately realistic attitudes are associated with depression. Not only do we have to confront exceptional nastiness on occasion, or for some unlucky people day-after-day, experiencing extreme unpleasantness tends to close use down psychologically.

Positive psychology requires us to recognize evil for what it is and to recognize opportunity, however minute

Positive psychology is about the processes that allow us to recognize what is evil and keep a clear mind, and conversely, to keep a clear mind and yet recognize evil for what it is. It is also about how to recognize opportunity, even if it is minute, when opportunity seems to have deserted us.

Today, I came across this quotation on Inner Edge on how to maintain some mental balance and perspective when life horrifies.

“Let fear soften us rather than harden us into resistance”

This is also a very attractive blog of poems with beautiful accompanying photos.


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