Expect Peace in Brain Based Bits

      20 Comments on Expect Peace in Brain Based Bits

Imagine a climate of peace, with language that inspires, and people who cheer on your talents. Would you agree that peace would have been a better plan than war in most cases you’ve observed? Not a passive peace, but a robust plan where many angles from different viewpoints move forward together on common ground. Have you seen it happen?

Most would agree that human minds are capable of increasing peace and warding off war. Far fewer though, are aware that it takes daily rewiring for positive tone. It starts where we live and it lives peace through words and actions that negotiate good in many directions. In ways that prove tangible benefits from wherever you stand. Not easy to achieve, yet that kick-start depends more on what you do and say daily than most people realize.

Lucky for those who’ve been more warrior minded than peacemaker prepared, that the brain’s plasticity changes daily.  Since your brain’s shaped by the world around you, new choices could change a groups’ plans for war into peaceful solutions instead.  It rarely happens by accident though. Frontal sections of your brain tell you where you’d score on the war/peace metrics. In the same area of the brain, you also build and develop strategies for becoming more of who you want others to see in you. To help, newly discovered research can guide how you respond with forceful peace tactics whenever war calls sound bugles where you work.

Brains rewire most when stimulated, and least when you remain passive, or accept war tactics that seem well entrenched. One way to remain alive mentally to new stimuli is to repeat actions that improve the world around you peacefully.

Facing conflict in your circles, for instance? Here are ten ways to kick-start your intrapersonal intelligence to live and promote peace before the mind rewires again for violence:warzone.gif

1. Suggest a peaceful alternative – whenever a conflict strikes. Hear about an unfairly demoted worker? Offer a proposal that shows the other side – respectfully – with no brain left behind. One leader refused to allow people to bring complains to his office, unless they had prepared an alternative for improving the broken situation. Can you see any impact for our broken systems that stagnate under problems today?

2. Model good tone on a daily basis – in ways that inspire others to emphasize points they agree on, to disagree with respect, and to value differences as a learning opportunity for both sides to find common ground. Tone that leads bullies to attack,  acts like a silent killer long before physical violence erupts. Tone’s also a best kept secret for peaceful prosperity and  luckily it’s skills can be learned by all who choose them. Few days pass with a new opportunity to practice and strengthen newly developed tone tasks, since the average person’s hit with about 22 stressors per day. How many of these found you responding with peace possibilities that inspire others to do the same?

3. Affirm peoples’ strengths – and downplay their weaker areas. When the mind awakens new intelligences, contentment follows, and with that – a will to spread peace. As peaceful solutions make life-changing improvements to another’s day, people’s strengths find ideal settings to grow as part of that process. I’m often amazed at multiple intelligences that pop into play once people begin to look for them, beyond the maze of weaknesses that shout back from war zones. What was your last genuine affirmation to encourage strengths around you?

4. Articulate what you expect – in clear, thoughtful examples. Ask people’s input and frame expectations more to offer benefits to all concerned. Workers used to war zones tend to come with frail self-worth, and foggy expectations. No wonder war triggers shoddy results. The opposite is also true. Project the peaceful results you expect onto screens in the back of your mind, and you’ve already set a mental trajectory to move ideas from mental imagery, into lived realities. Do others see vibrant colors, lines, and textures you expect to follow in your peace plan today?

5. Invite questions – about what’s specifically expected. Thomas Friedman’s best selling book, The World is Flat, shows how we can question beyond what will soon be outdated in a flat world.  Show the benefits of meeting expected criteria – and a person’s brain leaps into action for rejuvenated approaches forward. Two-footed questions tend to make differences fade and open common visions that unite. In contrast,  venting tends to promote violent reactions that lead into cortisol fuels for more conflict.

6. Challenge people for higher productivity – found from building common ground together. Then share the winning results when people avoid stifling others’ gifts or talents. It’s the opposite of entering a war zone with the assumption one side’s evil and one side’s angelic. Research at the University of Michigan shows that warlike tactics stifle job satisfaction, while the secret to improvement is to build people’s morale across diverse backgrounds or beliefs. Do people around you feel they’re making a difference because of your tactics to challenge issues for higher productivity?

7. Contribute brain food to your workplace – on a fairly regular basis. It need not be expensive but it will often add to peaceful encounters and can help to cut out conflict – simply by goodwill that generosity generates. Dark chocolate’s the best source of flavonals that fuel brains by diluting arteries and increasing blood flow. Blueberries add anthocyanins which help motor agility, and slow down or prevent mental problems associated with age. Green tea adds anti-oxidants that improve memory, as well as balance emotions for more well-being. Salmon, tuna or walnuts will toss that omega-3-fatty-acids into the mix to improve memory, add concentration, as well as impact communication, social adjustment, and interpersonal acumen. Anything here that would offer incentives to your snacks peaceful-solution-sessions?

8. Organize for peaceful visions – and watch the brain reshape confrontations into cooperation. Sure, it’s often harder than herding cats at first. Yet whenever you organize a meeting around people’s top passions and targets, you prepare the ground for brains to shape new realities. Those who insist on warrior approaches, for instance, have likely never lived without violent reactions. We now know, however, that the human brain achieves calm best with an advanced organizer. You might break down details to resolve one at a time. Or process a new plan together in sequential steps. Encourage people to articulate what they read on the topic. Apply facts that promote peace. Recognize words, numbers or sketches that people offer. Use other people’s ideas to toss back logical suggestions for growth. Create a calendar to set time lines to apply and test each step of the peace plan proposed. Organization helps to break down unwieldy war tactics into transformational peace possibilities. Have you seen it happen?

9. Reduce stress levels – and begin to replace  cortisol hormones, with serotonin for well being.  The problem with stress that fuels warfare, is that it often masks as diligence, or self-righteousness. Just as warriors fail to recognize good in others who differ, when amygdalas heat up,  people also miss its warning signals for war. Under stress, you fail to spot signs that hint at an enemy’s oncoming strike. Stress hormones – such as cortisol – cause people to panic and snap at quick or emotive decisions. Especially stomp out stress that masks itself as diligence and yet creates meta messages that leave people wondering what others meant by words they spoke.

10. Discuss marks of brain based peace plan – The human brain rewires itself to make changes in daily approaches whenever we go after a plan for peace. That’s why it’s critical to express the plan in doables, and ensure people move forward together with common endpoints in view. Approaches will differ just as people’s stronger intelligences become practical tools to enact peace, will differ. As you create parts to your plan in these brain based tactics, project them back to the group for clarity. Adjust parts that need practical applications – so that you entire plan is negotiated, and is converted into practical steps that lead to peaceful solutions and raise productivity for all concerned.

Are you wired for war or peace?  More importantly, how can you improve a peace plan to inspire winning solutions for all?

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Created by Ellen Weber, Brain Based Tasks for Growth Mindset

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20 thoughts on “Expect Peace in Brain Based Bits

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  17. eweber Post author

    Great insights here Wally and thanks for sharing your ideas. The metaphors for war are very similar to the metaphors for conflict – and in this case are being used in similar ways.

    For some, peace is always better than confrontation that leads to war – and this post, in that it resolves problems in uniquely different ways is a fresh look at possibilities rather than much else. It dove tails back to other posts on how to disagree with tone skills that can be learned by all, and that promote respect so that differences will emerge to teach all. Other experiences would certainly differ from MITA Brain Based tactics, which is why these topics are not coming from any one person’s perspective in the social media:-).

    Ours (at MITA) is a delightfully unique approach – based on extending intelligences in ways that people can develop stronger skills to shore up weaker areas at work. We actually certify leaders in using and facilitating these skills:-) Each supervisor will use effective consequences to affect behavior and add performance in ways that work in their unique setting. This blog advocates peaceful approaches in all encounters – and lays out a rationale for that selection – over the warrier approaches common in other institutions. It’s what distinguishes us and it resonates with brain based approaches – in that we use brain research for the tactics fostered.

    Brain based thinking looks past weaknesses, for instance, in it’s highly deliberate tactics draw from, develop and use one’s “stronger” intelligences to “get at” or grow weaker skills. We certify leaders in this teaching which comes from cutting edge neuro discoveries about intelligences at work, and it’s the precise distinctive at the MITA International Brain Based Center. In fact it’s the very distinctive that has won us awards for excellence here and in several other countries.

    Great ideas for thought here, and what a delight to see folks come at core topics in different ways. The language is rarely clear enough to state tactics as they flow — since my reading into your ideas was not in any way how we use the tactics laid out. That too is great – to see how people read that we write, and then take their own skill to bear on the applications.

    Thanks Wally for your many leadership skills – that teach so many of us:-)

  18. Wally Bock

    There are three things about this post that make me uncomfortable. The first is the term “war” when what we’re actually discussing is confrontation and anger in an organization.

    The other thing that bothers me is what I see as the unchallenged assumption that working for peace is always better than confrontation. In my experience that’s not true.

    If I’m a supervisor, controlled confrontation is part of my toolkit and creating discomfort in the face of nonperformance is one of the ways I can use consequences to affect behavior and performance.

    The third thing is a bit more specific. I simply don’t think downplaying people’s weaknesses is productive. I’ve taught people in my programs that the objective should be to make weaknesses irrelevant.

    Sometimes you do that by shifting work assignments. Sometimes you eliminate the need to do the task. Sometimes you outsource to other people or to technology. Sometimes you help the person get “good enough.”

    Building on and developing strengths is a core strategy. But doing that without attention to weaknesses is not good for the team or the team member.

  19. eweber Post author

    Conrad, it’s a daily reflection to try and figure what would work best – for more people – in spite of what broken systems say works best:-) Would you agree?

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