Sunday, February 15, 2009

The New Dare to Discipline

Methods and philosophies of discipline have been the subject of heated debate and disagreement throughout the past seventy years. Psychologists and pediatricians and university professors have all gotten into the act, telling parents how to raise their kids properly. Unfortunately, many of these “experts” have been in direct contradiction with one another, spreading more heat than light about a subject of great importance.

Perhaps that is why the pendulum has swung back and forth regularly between harsh, oppressive control and the unstructured permissiveness we saw in the mid-twentieth century. It is time we realized that both extremes leave the characteristic scars on the lives of young victims, and I would be hard pressed to say which is more damaging.

At the oppressive end of the continuum, a child suffers the humiliation of total domination. The atmosphere is icy and rigid, and he lives in constant fear. He is unable to make his own decisions, and his personality is squelched beneath the hobnailed boot of parental authority. Lasting characteristics of dependency; deep, abiding anger; an even psychosis can emerge from this persistent dominance.

Many of the writers offering their opinions on the subject of discipline in recent years have confused parents, stripping them of the ability to lead in their own homes. They have failed to acknowledge the desire of most youngsters to rule their own lives and prevail in the contest of wills that typically occurs between generations.

Much has been written about the dangers of harsh, oppressive, unloving discipline; these warnings are valid and should be heeded. Many well-meaning specialists have waved he banner of tolerance, but offered no solution for defiance. They have stressed the importance of parental understanding of the child. But we need to teach children that they have a few things to learn about their parents too!

The term “discipline” is not limited to the context of confrontation. Children also need to be taught self-discipline and responsible behavior. They need assistance in learning how to handle the challenges and obligations of living. They must learn the art of self-control. They should be equipped with the personal strength needed to meet the demands imposed on them by their school, peer group, and later adult responsibilities.

When properly applied, loving discipline works! It stimulates tender affection, made possible by mutual respect between a parent and a child. It bridges the gap which otherwise separates family members who should love and trust each other. It permits teachers to do the kind of job in classrooms for which they are commissioned. It encourages a child to respect other people and live as a responsible, constructive citizen.

As might be expected, there is a price tag on these benefits: they require courage, consistency, conviction, diligence, and enthusiastic effort. In short, one must dare to discipline in an environment of unmitigated love.

The most effective parents are those who have the skill to get behind the eyes of their child, seeing what he sees, thinking what he thinks, feeling what he feels. The art of good parenthood revolves around the interpretation of meaning behind behaviour. If parents intuitively know their child, they will be able to watch and discern what is going on in his little head. The child will tell them what he is thinking if they learn to listen carefully. Unless they can master this ability, however, they will continually fumble in the dark in search of a proper response.

The most vital objective of disciplining a child is to gain and maintain his respect. If the parents fail in this task, life becomes uncomfortable indeed. is a book summary service that provides summaries of top self-help, motivational and inspirational books where you can learn--in minutes-- what it takes to live life and live it well. sends out one book summary every week in PDF, PDA, audio and/or print formats. For more information, please go to

Monday, February 9, 2009

Power of the Plus Factor

The Big Idea
You have the power to achieve all that you wish to do in your life – and much more.

Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, one of the most popular and inspirational writers of all time, explains how you can tap this inexhaustible reserve of energy within you. The key is the Plus Factor, which when activated will give you the motivation to do what you want to do and to achieve health, confidence, and security.

You'll discover that you can do things you once thought were impossible and ultimately experience the fantastic joy of living a healthy, happy life to the fullest.

Find out today how the plus factor can change your life!

Why You Need This Book
This book will offer you a better understanding of this inner potential and make it begin to operate in your life and your loved ones.

You will learn how the Plus Factor can add vitality and excitement to every area of your life through:

Unlocking your potential through creative dreaming

Setting positive goals that will enrich your inner self

Overcoming setbacks by persistence and perseverance in obtaining your goals

The Challenge of the Plus Factor
What if there is a power within you that can revolutionize your life?

The Plus Factor.

It’s the quality of extra-ness that you see in certain people.
People who live with more eagerness, more energy, more enthusiasm than others.

Who set higher goals and achieve them more often.

Who shrug off misfortune and give out warmth and caring and encouragement wherever they go.

But there is one thing you must realize about the Plus Factor. Its power is potential, but it is not self-activating. If you want this wonderful stream of power to be activated in you, there are four preliminary things you should do.

First, make the key discovery that the Plus Factor is no myth, no abstraction, but a reality that has been recognized and used by wise men and women for centuries.

You must want it intensely, urgently, ardently. Lastly, you decide to face the fact that this marvelous potential built into you is not being fully realized.

Creative Dreaming
The first step to be taken in order to start the Plus Factor operating is to learn to be a creative dreamer. In some uncanny way that no one fully understands, dreams seem to contain the seeds of their own fulfillment.

If you dream something long enough and hard enough, a door seems to open and through that door come mighty forces that will guide and support you in your efforts to make the dream come true.

Creative dreaming, in other words, activates the release of power that we call the Plus Factor.

Hard-nosed, practical people sometimes scoff at such a notion. To them the term dreamer implies vagueness and impracticality.

A dream vividly imagined. A goal tenaciously pursued. An unshakable determination to work and work and keep on working.

These are all keys that open the door to the power that we call the Plus Factor.

Dreams are not just idle nothings. They are the parents of possibilities. And possibilities are the descendants of dreams.

Dream big, dream long, dream strong.

And remember, sometimes, the Plus Factor is only a dream away.

Setting Goals
Let’s assume you have begun to liberate the Plus Factor in your nature by the process of creative dreaming.

You have to build a viaduct over which they can pass from the world of dreams to the world of reality.

In other words, you have to learn to set goals.

Here are suggestions that will help you:

Sharpen your thinking about goal setting.
Obviously, goals range all the way from very broad life goals to small specific goals. Learn to distinguish between long-term and short-term goals. The objective is worth the price.

Learn to distinguish between a goal and a wish.
The fairy tales we all loved as children are full of spells that bring instant happiness and charms that make dreams come true; but they are fantasy, not reality. The reason such stories have had such appeal through the ages is that they promise glowing rewards without effort. Life isn’t like that.

Prepare for ultimate goals by achieving interim goals.
The principle involved here is completely logical and completely sound: The training and experience you acquire in attaining a lesser goal leaves you ready to pursue a greater one.

Choose goals that will benefit others as well as yourself.
A goal that involves concern for other people seems to liberate the Plus Factor much more readily than one that doesn’t. It’s not enough for a person entering medical school to want to be rich and successful; his or her basic goal should be the desire to help people. You’ll find it helps to have the concept of service embedded in the goal.

Persisting with the Plus Factor
No matter how long it takes, persist. No matter how discouraged you may get, persevere.

Why are persistence and perseverance of such enormous importance? Because so little consequence is achieved without them.

We’ve all heard the story of the rusty old pickaxe stuck in the rocky wall of an unproductive mine, left there by a miner who had given up in disgust and walked away from it. Years later, another miner idly swung his pick against the same wall and broke through into the fabulous Comstock lode.

Untold wealth could have been discovered by the first miner if only he had persisted a little longer.

Handling Trouble
It’s learning how to live, isn’t it? Life is a priceless gift, but it doesn’t last forever. While we have it, our happiness depends on just one thing: how well we learn to cope with the challenges it presents.

There are common-sense attitudes that can be found helpful in dealing with trouble in such a way that the law of challenge and response becomes operative and the power of the Plus Factor comes through.

Face up to the problem.
There’s always the temptation to shy away from it, to play the ostrich, to bury your head in the sand, and hope the problem will go away. Look the problem in the eye.

Analyze it. Dissect it.

Very often people find themselves in trouble because the trouble is really in them. They may be in trouble, but before they can deal with it they have to recognize and deal with trouble in themselves.

Having faced up to the problem and examined yourself, take some kind of action.
Action is a restorer and builder of confidence. Inaction is not only the result but the cause of fear. Perhaps the action you take will be successful; perhaps different action or adjustments will have to follow.

But any action is better than no action at all. So don’t wait for trouble to intimidate or paralyze you.

Don’t be unwilling to ask for help.
Some people act as if trouble were a disgrace, something to be concealed at all costs. Even a sympathetic friend can help just by listening or offering a word of encouragement. Sharing trouble eases the strain and often helps perspective.

Don’t fall in love with your trouble.
Troubles come. William James, the great psychologist, once said that the essence of genius lies in knowing what to overlook. Why not apply that to your troubles? Overlook the small ones, and when the big ones are ready to move on, open wide the door and let them go.

What the Plus Factor is trying to teach us is this: Trouble can be unpleasant and painful and damaging, but it can also be the flint that strikes sparks out of the steel in your soul.

The Plus Factor of Good Health

Rules for Good Health and Positive Living

Have interesting work to do. Keep active at something worthwhile.

Eat simply. Keep your food intake under control.

Give top priority to walking every day. Swimming is also helpful.

Never let a sense of guilt fester in you.

Develop spirit and soul health.

Cultivate the ‘peace that passes understanding.’

Expect and image good health.

Through spiritual cultivation keep your Plus Factor robust.

Turn Setbacks into Comebacks
Everyone has setbacks. This is a normal fact of life. If you allow it to be so, it can take the life out of you.

Then draw on that big something within called the Plus Factor. You will be strong enough to turn that setback into a comeback.

Often a so-called setback is actually a blessing in disguise. Many times setbacks not only lead to comebacks but to even better circumstances than before.

By a strong positive attitude and intelligent effort he was able to turn the majority of his setbacks into comebacks. And he says he learned something from each experience.

One thing he learned was to look intently into a setback situation for what know-how it might contain, for usually there are some direction signs to that comeback down the road.

Using the principles listed here will help you turn your setbacks into comebacks:

Always believe that with you can ultimately turn any setback into a comeback.

Your Plus Factor is still unimpaired.

Remember, in that setback may be the answer to your comeback.

Never be afraid. Pray big, believe big, think big.

Always be helpful to others and you will have friends who will help you turn setbacks into comebacks.

Remember always that you can turn setbacks into comebacks with your Plus Factor. is a book summary service that provides summaries of top self-help, motivational and inspirational books where you can learn--in minutes-- what it takes to live life and live it well. sends out one book summary every week in PDF, PDA, audio and/or print formats. For more information, please go to

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

How We Lead Matters

How We Lead Matters
Reflections on a Life of Leadership by Marilyn Carlson Nelson

The Big Idea
Marilyn Carlson Nelson has achieved global recognition for the Carlson brands of hotels, restaurants, travel, and marketing services.

As a daughter, wife, mother, and grandmother, Marilyn has always put people first. Most compelling of all, she reveals how a meaningful legacy is built one day at a time.

Why You Need This Book
This thoughtful book offers a surprisingly personal glimpse into a multi-faceted woman who became one of the world’s most successful global CEOs.

Star Gazing
Those of us who are “called to business” as our life pursuit must learn how best to leverage our influence and work across sectors on complex problems for the common good. We must be what is called “integrative leaders.”

In an increasingly complex and interconnected world, business leaders must pause and contemplate the way businesses can best interact with the non-profit and public sectors.

Like magicians with their adroit movements, Klaus is a master at focusing all attention on the object at hand whether it be peace, social responsibility, economic vitality, or world health.

Secret Ingredient
In today’s pop business culture of motivational phrases and self-improvement books on successful management, there is no shortage of slogans about the value of teamwork:

“There’s no ‘I’ in teamwork.”

“TEAM: Together Everyone Achieves More.”

The fact is, they all convey what we know instinctively: TEAMS ARE POWERFUL.

Through our own experience and supporting research, we are convinced that complex problems benefit greatly from the creativity that comes from diverse thought, backgrounds, and styles.

The researchers studied “successful” teams and the true “breakthrough” teams to try to determine the differentiators between the two. In the end, they concluded that the greatest determinant of a breakthrough team is that they members of the team care as much about each other’s success as they do about their own success.

It’s well worth the investment to institutionalize a method for hiring people that’s based not only on the capacity to do the job but also on the capacity to care.

The Greeks, who had a wise saying for everything, said, “A people are known by the heroes they crown.”

There are some of us, though, who do see the quiet but significant contributions they make to society and mentally crown them heroes, adding their vocal and, when appropriate, financial support. is a book summary service that provides summaries of top self-help, motivational and inspirational books where you can learn--in minutes-- what it takes to live life and live it well. sends out one book summary every week in PDF, PDA, audio and/or print formats. For more information, please go to