In the Scheme of Things …

Small talk with little substance…”bears no fruit” with casual acquaintances, groups or strangers.

small-talk

There was a study that someone conducted in regard to the attention span of the average listener.  It concluded after 25 seconds if the listeners had no interest in what you were saying… they tuned you out and were no longer listening.  (I am sure that I have made a lot of 25 second speeches without knowing it).  We sometimes initiate questions that promote longer answers (unintentionally) than we are prepared to listen to. For example: “How was your golf game today”? “Well on the first hole I knocked one out of bounds and three putted…then on the second hole”….and so on….get the point. The question that deserves a 25 second or less response… “What score did you shoot today”?

We all ask questions or make statements that are not meant to initiate a conversation…but as a means of politeness or awareness of one’s presence. Such as “How are you today?”… “Have a good day”… “Good golf shot”…etc…all of these can be responded to in no more than one or two words….and should be.

If you are trying to start a conversation that has value beyond 25 seconds…then ask a question to someone who has a source of knowledge to the question you are asking….and then be prepared to listen to the answer. Conversation should be an exchange of ideas or at least a learning experience.  Remember when you are talking “you are only learning what you already know”…and if your dialog extends beyond 25 seconds it should have interest to the other party.

There are some basic rules that we should all engage in such as:

…never ask a question that you know will embarrass or make the other person feel inadequate.

…questions concerning religion and politics are not good topics…if you know the other person’s views are different from your.

…having an opinion and elaborating on something that you know nothing about is more dangerous than not having an opinion at all. This one is a confirmation to the statement “I thought he was smart until he open his mouth and removed all doubt”.

…people usually would prefer talking about themselves or their own experiences with you listening …rather than listening to you talk about yourself.

Now I have just stated what I believe to be the proper protocol for starting an intelligent conversation with a casual acquaintance, group, or a stranger in the proper setting.

With that said… if you should run into an “old friend” that you haven’t seen in some time… in an informal setting such as on the golf course or like…none of the above applies…the proper greeting would be to extend you hand for a hand shake, smile and verbalize… “Damn you are as ugly as I remember”…It’s a guy thing…we wear it like a badge of honor….and it took less than 25 seconds.  Disclaimer: I would not necessarily recommend this greeting to the more intelligent gender…women.

 

 DISCLAIMER: The information presented is either my opinion or information obtained from sources believed to be reliable and factual; however, I make no representation as to the completeness or accuracy thereof. Any errors, including misuse or misspelling of words is either due to my fingers hitting the wrong keys, oversight, or my own ignorance

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When understanding…was simple

the-simple-lifeI grew up in a time when understanding…was simple.

Prime example is the first twelve years of my formal education. I knew in advance that the purpose for attending school was to receive an education in order to improve my chances of becoming successful.  The word “successful” is a subjective word meaning different things to different people…which we will discuss another day.

Ok….let me backup a little…in the first few years of my education I couldn’t even conceive the words that I just used above…must less spell them. The first few years were spent learning (without my awareness) to interact with other kids, structure, sharing, respect for authority, discipline…and heartache.  Yes…heartache, there was a little girl in the third grade that was cute that had absolutely no interest in becoming my girl friend.

Beyond those first few years I gained the “simple understanding” of several things. If I didn’t listen and study…not only would I not learn…but there would be consequences. I would not be promoted to the next grade level with my friends if I didn’t meet the minimum academic requirements… that my family who cared about me would be disappointed… that it was my fault that I didn’t pass because I didn’t apply myself because of my priorities.  I had a great deal of respect for my teachers and their attitude toward us as developing individuals. That respect never wavered…even when I was sent to the Principal’s office to have my ass whipped…that’s right …have my ass whipped.  I didn’t need a thirty minute lecture or therapy session with the Principal, I knew what I had done was wrong and I new the consequences beforehand…it was my choice.  I also knew when I got home that my Pop would not be going to the school the next day to try and have the Principal fired…but that he would just whip my ass to reconfirm the Principal’s action.  I began to make better choices after a couple of those sessions.

This was also an age that you learned in life that everything was not necessarily equal.   I am hesitant to use the word “fair” because to me that meant you “cheated or didn’t play by the rules”. Today I feel that word is used more too express “resentment or entitlement”. It was a time…if you didn’t win your ball game…it’s was because the other team was better that day. It was fair…it just wasn’t equal on that given day. You also realized that your physical skill level may not be equal to some of your team mates, but you didn’t resent their talent…you used it as an incentive to play your best.

The first twelve years of my formal education was for the purpose to help me reach a level of knowledge and understanding that should benefit me in making choices in the “real world”.  There would no longer be a bell ringing every 50 minutes to direct me to the next event of my life… it was my time to make my own choices in life…the understanding was simple.

 

 DISCLAIMER: The information presented is either my opinion or information obtained from sources believed to be reliable and factual; however, I make no representation as to the completeness or accuracy thereof. Any errors, including misuse or misspelling of words is either due to my fingers hitting the wrong keys, oversight, or my own ignorance.

“Attitude” good or bad?

Attitudeis defined as an opinion or general feeling about something…a physical posture, either conscious or unconscious, especially while interacting with others…an arrogant or assertive manner or stance assumed as a challenge or for effect.

Attitude is usually perceived as “good” or “bad”…if one appears positive, happy, cheerful, friendly, etc…(You get the point) then he/she is probably perceived as one with a “good attitude”.  If one is assertive, loud, unafraid, determined, then one would probably be perceived as one with a “bad attitude”. Ones’ perception does not always reflect reality.  Whether you agree or disagree with the content of the message or messenger …it will usually influence your perception. Don’t be afraid to have  what could be perceived as “bad attitude”…without it… complacency, fear and political correctness can stand in the way of progress and change which can result in stagnation and eventually erosion…nothing remains the same. The next time you judge someone’s attitude (and we all do) ask yourself “Am I looking at a “hothead”…or a “passionate” person with convictions?  Good or bad? Assertions of the “right attitude” will have a purpose and a goal to reach a destination.

Attitude and Diplomacy do not always go hand and hand.  Diplomacy can be a long drawn out process with pandering and postponement. My attitude is much like the “old gentlemen” when asked by the store clerk if he wanted the extended warranty with his purchase…he said, “Son, I don’t need the extended warranty…at my age I don’t even buy “green” bananas anymore”.  Time is of the essence….cut to the chase…say what you mean and mean what you say… and say it with passion.

“Good” or “Bad” is not the question … the question is; is it the right “attitude”?

Footnote:  My wife forward an email one day that I thought was appropriate to this article…it read  “Don’t get confused between my personality and my attitude.  My personality is who I am, my attitude depends on who you are“.

DISCLAIMER: The information presented is either my opinion or information obtained from sources believed to be reliable and factual; however, I make no representation as to the completeness or accuracy thereof. Any errors, including misuse or misspelling of words is either due to my fingers hitting the wrong keys, oversight, or my own ignorance.

Definition of pandering… “as I view it”

nobull2To cater to the lower tastes and desires of others or exploit their weaknesses: “tell them what they want to hear…manipulate them…lower your owns standards to appease their egos or self-importance.”

Courtesy should always be extended…until it crosses the line and becomes pandering.  In regard to respect…it can not be demanded..nor earned…it can only be given…give it wisely and truthfully.

NOPANDERINGHERE  I tell the truth “as I view it”…you don’t have to agree…no problem…prove me wrong…I don’t care…but I will never agree for the sake of agreeing. 

We can disagree and both be right (or wrong)..that’s okay… but I remain true to my convictions until proven wrong..and if so…I will be true to the truth.

NO NONSENSE-NO BULL-COMMON SENSE APPLIED

DISCLAIMER: The information presented is either my opinion or information obtained from sources believed to be reliable and factual; however, I make no representation as to the completeness or accuracy thereof. Any errors, including misuse or misspelling of words is either due to my fingers hitting the wrong keys, oversight, or my own ignorance.