Daily Quote: “For a person with mental illness, the challenge is to find the life that’s right for you. But in truth, isn’t that the challenge for all of us, mentally ill or not?”Dr. Elyn Saks, from her book, The Center Cannot Hold.
Reflection:Very moving speech detailing,one highly functioning person’s, long difficult struggle with Schizophrenia and Mental Illness. Dr. Saks, insightful, sad and realistic story makes me want to help more with this devastating disease. Here is her heart felt and insightful speech at the University of Virginia Law School http://www.law.virginia.edu/html/news/2009_spr/saks.htm
What are your reactions?
Note: Dr. Elyn Saks is the Orrin B. Evans Professor of Law, Psychology, and Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at USC’s Gould School of Law, an adjunct professor of Psychiatry at the UCSD School of Medicine, and assistant faculty at the New Center for Psychoanalysis in Los Angeles. In 2009, she received the MacArthur Foundation “Genius Grant.” Despite battling schizophrenia and acute psychosis since she was a teenager, Saks is a nationally recognized scholar in mental health law, criminal law and the ethical dimensions of medical research.
After decades of hiding her illness, Saks published a memoir about her struggles and successes in The Center Cannot Hold: My Journey Through Madness (Hyperion, 2007). The book won far-reaching acclaim from literary critics and advocacy groups.
Quote:” Elite performers, researchers say, must engage in “deliberate practice”—sustained, mindful efforts to develop the full range of abilities that success requires. You have to work at what you’re not good at. In theory, people might be able to use self-coaching, but most people do not know where to start or how to proceed. Expertise, as the formula goes, requires going from unconscious incompetence to conscious incompetence to conscious competence and finally to unconscious competence. The coach provides the outside eyes and ears, and makes you aware of where you’re falling short. This is tricky. Human beings resist exposure and critique; our brains are well defended. So coaches use a variety of approaches—showing what other, respected colleagues do, for instance, or reviewing videos of the subject’s performance. The most common, however, is just conversation.” Top Athletes and Singers have Coaches. Should you? Atul Gawande
Action Challenge: Given that we can all improve our skills the question for you in the next week is to identify–What areas would you like a coach to assist or provide feedback on so that you can become a more effective professional?
"America was not built on fear. America was built on courage, on imagination and unbeatable determination to do the job at hand." Harry Truman 1947
As President Obama offers another olive branch and marshmallows one wonders if he understands the war for the soul of our Representative Republic he is in the mist of. Maybe he just wants to be known as a nice guy. His new strategy is the one he has been taking for two years-"Let's all just get along". I guarantee you this will not work when the Republicans are spouting off about the goals for their governing strategy--defeat Obama and take this country back to the future with more tax cuts for the wealthy and dismantling the New Deal cornerstones Social Security and Medicare. Maybe taking a page out of Harry Truman's approach would suggest another and more assertive way to handle the party of "No"--Let's get the job done. Continue reading "After the Mid-Terms: Obama’s Leadership Imperatives"
“Life never was a series of easy victories (not even a series of hard victories). We can’t win every round or arrive at a neat solution to every problem. But driving, creative effort to solve problems is the breath of life, for civilization or an individual.” John Gardner
Recently, I talked about President Obama’s leadership style in the HCR debate. He delegated authority to the House and Senate and expected reasonable debate to provide a consensus bill. What were the reasons for this approach? Let me speculate on a few: Was he timid or naive to assume and trust the Senate and House members would do what was right for the American people ? Miscalculation of the support for HCR in the ranks of the Dems? An overreaction to the process used by Bill Clinton’s attempt to pass HCR? An over estimation that persuasion, olive branches and evidence of need would work to bring Republicans around ? Or just arrogance of the White House about the power and authority of the Presidency? An underestimation of the gullibility of “low information” people like the Tea Party crowd who seem to believe everything from death panels to government take over by the “right-wing talkers” and obstructionist? Lack of understanding of the power of fear? Or lack of effective leadership, organizing and understanding of the process of a complex change process as defined by Dr.Kurt Lewin, who said the following about the complexity of changing the status quo : ” Unfortunately, some people will genuinely be harmed by change, particularly those who benefit strongly from the status quo. Others may take a long time to recognize the benefits that change brings. You need to foresee and manage these situations.” Continue reading “No Easy Victories: Obama’s Personal Leadership Style”
Our advocate has arrived. Finally, there is some listening and action on the needs and expectation of all Americans at the White House—solve our problems and produce results. By being an advocate the President can rebuild trust and credibility with the folks who elected him; ensure positive change by meeting and exceeding constituents expectations and adding value to their “quality of life” not pain; and build an empathic government through listening and acting on priority problems; such as HCR and more jobs… and more Continue reading “President Obama arrives as Advocate In Chief”