PULSE Conversations


There are many ways to measure your well-being.  This week I have been thinking about one that is more portable … one you can keep on your finger tips for quick check ins when you are going through a rougher time in your evolution as a person.  I suppose this could become an APP but for now all you need is five fingers to set and remember the scales that will help you assess your state of mind, body and heart.  I have always talked about the three orientations that people.  Past oriented people are more likely to live in the heart and feel things deeply.  Present people are more likely to live in their body and fill the spaces they occupy.  Future oriented people are more likely to live in their minds, thinking deeply.  All of us have head heart and body so there is no escaping the past present future orientations.  Each can be identified as a Type of intelligence.  Many people are writing and study multiply intelligence and they do include head, heart and body kinds of knowing. I thought it would be helpful to have a quick assessment tool to evaluate where you are, how you are doing, by your own determination on these and two others.  Besides physical intelligence, mental or intellectual intelligence and physical intelligence I have added relational or social intelligence and spiritual intelligence to the Check In List.

Beginning with the mind, consider how SHARP your mind is today.  On a scale of one to ten, one being the foggiest day in your mind and ten being the brilliant day when you made great discoveries, how SHARP are you today? Use your preferred hand to slide that scale across your baby finger until you can feel and see how you feel right now.  If you are feeling SHARP you will end up near the tip of your finger.  If you are not feeling especially SHARP today you will be closer to the palm of your hand where the fingers come together to help each other.

Now on your ring finger consider the level of HAPPINESS you feel in your heart.  How joyful and happy are the emotions you are experiencing right now.  Again, slide your preferred hand up and down the ring finger of your other hand to determine a visual and sensational point to indicate that experience.  Closer to the palm is less happy than closer to the tip and truly joyous might be off the end of the finger.

Now for your middle finger.  This is a social intelligence measure and the scale relates to your level of INDEPENDENCE.  How independent of spirit are you feeling today?  I am not sure why I choose independence as the measure except that experiencing a sense of independence and confidence and courage allows you to develop relationships on your terms.  Closer to the palm means you are depending on others for your social well-being while closer to the tip indicates that you are in charge of your own social agenda.

The pointer finger or index finger represents your body and its level of FITNESS.  How FIT are you?  Closer to the palm indicates that work needs to be done to maximize the energy that our bodies can provide. I think of another acronym that I use as a reminder to myself about fitness.  RENEW – Rest, Energy, Nutrition, Exercise and Water.  These are the things that contribute to a healthy and fit body. Are you getting the right combination of these things to keep you fit?

The thumb represents the soul, the spiritual intelligence that connects us with mankind. Here the measure is TRUST.  How trusting a soul are you?  Do you have faith in mankind? Can you trust your fellow human beings or a deity that you have come to know as kind and loving?  Can you move beyond yourself in a way that benefits others and the planet?  This scale is about consciousness which can be raised if we trust each other.

Each time you use your preferred hand to measure the scales on your other hand you will notice that the results are not constant.  Where we are on a given day at a given hour can SHIFT.  Using the scales SHIFT scales can provide immediate feedback on the depth and direction of the SHIFT and can promote corrective action.  Keeping things on an even keel, especially in difficult times is key and working toward the tips of the fingers and beyond on all of scales can improve our attitudes, our perspectives and our lives.

On a scale of 1 to 10 measure your SHIFT.

Sharpness of mind
Happiness of heart
Independence of spirit
Fitness of body
Trust in mankind

Over the next week or so I will write about each of the areas of intelligence and suggest ways to change the results on each of the fingers.  Meanwhile please let me know if you use the scales and how they work for you.

MERPS – Mental, Emotional, Relational, Physical and Spiritual+ Well-being indices.

I had a chance to do an introduction of myself as a representative of the St Albert Mediation Office at the Chamber of Commerce breakfast meeting this morning.  I used my new line.

“Giving people the courage to make a change and the confidence to make a difference.”

The giving part is iffy.  I don’t really give anyone anything.  I help them look for the power to change inside of themselves, in their own history and in their own values.  I did that today too.  I listened and asked questions today.  I was the consumer instead of the sales person and I learned a lot as we did the speed networking.  There are wonderful people running businesses in St Albert and I am happy to be in their company.

“What is the best experience you have had doing what you do?”  That was my question.  The answers were thoughtful and thought-provoking and I felt honoured to hear honest, heartfelt and “off script” responses.  People come prepared to talk about their businesses but not necessarily their own experiences within it.  It was great.

“What’s one thing you would change about what you do?”  That was my second question. Some interesting takes on how to improve things.  My final challenge to them … “What one thing could you do this week to make things better for you?”  This one usually invokes a quizzical look that says “I have the power to change things???” Really? … hmmmmm, let me think…”

As we move in to SOAR (Season of Added Responsibility), I know you will be chatting with people at Christmas Parties and family gatherings.  Add theses three little questions to your conversations starters.  You will be amazed.  Everybody has a story.  Some of them could break your heart.  Others will lift it to new heights. These questions let people identify for themselves what brings them joy, what they value and what is within their power to change. Just asking the question makes a difference.

“What is the best experience you have had doing what you do?”

“What’s one thing you would change about what you do?”

“What one thing could you do this week to make things better for you?”

Merry Christmas

We are coming up on another winter Olympics.  It seems like yesterday that I was here in Vancouver when the games were on.  It was magical. The world had come to Canada and we were enjoying the hosting role very much.  There was a lot of work and organization that went into those games and so many volunteers meant an added level of commitment.  Any one who was Canadian and here in the city was an ambassador and a fan.  The streets were alive and we were all vibrating at the same frequency it seemed.

What will Sochi be like for us?  Right now for me it is anticlimactic.  The proximity to the action, the opportunity to perhaps run into the athletes, to catch a glimpse of them in person, all the excitement that went with that presence is now half a world away.

I am happy for the Russians who will participate in the hosting experience this year.  I am sure it will be exhilarating for them as it was for us.  I wish our Canadian team the very best.  Maybe the absence of the home crowd will allow them to concentrate .  Maybe because they have experienced it first hand they will be more successful at imagining, visualizing the home crowd reaction to podium medals.  I hope they understand the support that is here for them in a new way.

I wish them well.  I will be glued to the TV coverage no matter the time of day.  I will be part of the world that is watching from afar and my heart will be there with them as they compete.  It is not the same but the experience of last time has strengthened a connection that will last for me and for many others who were here in Vancouver for the GAMES, our games.

Experience brings us together in shared history.  That is true not only in major world events but in our every day lives.  Make your own shard memories today.

Have you ever learned something new the day after you needed to know it?  That happened to me this week.  Saturday I attended the CAPS meeting in Edmonton and heard two wonderful speakers.  One talked about websites and business development.  It was very informative.  I learned somethings that I did not know, especially things to avoid, and I am grateful.  The speaker was Irene Gaudet.  the second speaker was Tim Breithaupt from Calgary.  His topic was about shifting activity to productivity.  He was referring to marketing as activity and sales as productivity.  It is the first sales presentation I have heard that stuck for me.  He was funny and had lots of great stories that I can relate to and that I will remember.  Most importantly he was honest with us. He explained to me what I have been doing wrong for the past 12 years and more importantly what I had done wrong on Thursday and Friday last week.  I SOOOOO wished I had heard him speak on Wednesday.  Thursday and Friday may have been very different for me.

Tim talked about the differences between Features and Benefits.  PULSE has lots of Features but what are the benefits to the clients?  That’s what people buy …benefits.  All weekend I have been thinking about what the benefit of buying PULSE products are for those who do.  If you have done the training and been coached by me how does that help you?  What do you have at the end that you had less of at the beginning? What I came up with is Confidence.  We sell confidence.  After a PULSE training you are more confident about your ability to handle difficult situations and people.  We don’t’ sell books, coaching, training and keynote addresses.  We sell confidence in dealing with difficult situations and people.  HMMMM???  What do you think?  Does that ring true for you?

I think the confidence comes from the thoroughly researched and theory based approaches that we know work in high conflict.  I thing it comes from the tried and true results of appreciative inquiry and the powerful wisdom of the Enneagram.  The three prongs of PULSE conversation converge and integrate to a powerful approach that we know works.  It is deliberate and reliable.  Knowing it adds confidence and courage to anyone who applies the methods.  We sell CONFIDENCE IN DEALING WITH DIFFICULT PEOPLE AND SITUATIONS. That is at least one benefit that I can see.  I know that the client is the one who identifies the benefit.  As clients if you have other ideas of what benefit you derived from your PULSE experience please share it with me.

Thanks, Tim, for the inspirational and thought provoking presentation.  Only wish I had heard it sooner.

If you are familiar with PULSE conversations you know that they provide you with tools to move people from the RED Zone of retaliation and anger to the GREEN Zone of connection and collaboration. I have often written about it when I talk to mediators and negotiators because in those circumstances people enter the conversation ready for a fight, in the Red Zone.

Recently I was working with a coaching client on his approach to an up coming difficult conversation. What I realized that we were doing together was creating a strategy for STAYING in the GREEN zone from the beginning. So we talked about how to avoid triggers and word choices that would make it impossible for the other person to take offense and move to red. It was an enlightening exercise for both of us.

We took turns playing the roles. I read to him what he had prepared and he could hear immediately what words might trigger an unfavourable reaction. Then we talked about remaining curious rather than accusatory, asking questions rather than giving opinions, listening for tense orientation and matching it for best opportunity to connect, matching and mismatching to move them to the purpose of the meeting, being clear about that purpose from the beginning and in fact following closely the PULSE structure to insure a positive outcome.

This is a very different purpose for the PULSE frame and associated skills but a very useful one for anyone in leadership who needs to deliver news in a way that won’t incite riots. How do you work with someone to have them come to understand some hard to hear news without triggering emotional responses that can negatively impact the working relationship? There are deliberate steps to follow and effective tools at your disposal. GHOST, POWER and HEART to name 15…..

I am hosting 40 hour PULSE Course in October and November. The first 16 hours are on line at your leisure, at your own computer with me providing feedback as you finis the modules. You receive a link and a password the first week in October. Then November 14, 15, 16 I have room for three more people to work with me on the practice part of the program in St Albert at the office. If you are interested or would like to recommend the program to someone else, let me know.

I am leaving for Europe today. I will blog when I can. Europe always inspires me. France and Italy this time. Au revoir ….

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