Angst or Awe? 41 – 50 of 50 Anxiety-Free Power Tools

Anxiety disorders will likely be our next and most dangerous pandemic, experts fear! We know that worry and fear is on a fast rise and escalation of these toxins are already showing catastrophic problems that hamper people’s ability to cope with challenges. We also know that we come with chemicals that delight and wow us, just as we come with chemicals that fuel anxieties and worries.

This series first blog includes the first 10 anxiety-buster tools and is followed by the second blog with tools 11 – 20 with the third blog tools 21 to 30, the fourth blog tools 31 to 40 and below, the final blog tools 41 to 50 of our anxiety-free series. All five blogs offer proven exit tools for our personal escape to decrease anxiety in tough times, such as a pandemic or climate change catastrophes!

Tool 41 below, shows how the brain comes hardwired to overcome passivity or boredom that easily defaults to stress. By transforming pressured practices to stress-free solutions, we can reduce stress. We overcome anxiety by using mental tools to exchange facts into working solutions. Transfer is not automatic regardless of genius insights. Action creates change. Brains hold new facts for a short time in working memory and actions transform and store this data into usable skills.

COFFEE CONSIDERATION 41: How we see change will determine how we replace anxiety with anti-stress responses. 10 principles of change I’ve learned over 40 years and international experiences, that help us to alter talks or lectures into vibrant interactive learning and mutual mentoring opportunities.

Initiate change in small increments – mentally, physically and emotionally. We need time and support in order to temper con­cerns about stress and to build skills that will adapt new knowledge and contemporary challenges, such as a pandemic in a changing society. Change should more than test traditional pressured practices.  It should introduce a variety of brain based ways, such as mind-guiding and multiple intelligence approaches to live without anxiety.

Help others by doing projects with them, by working alongside. We activate one another’s interests and abilities to build innovative structures that counteract deeply ingrained, anxiety inducing approaches. As we work together, we bring unique responses to resolve common problems with stress-free solutions created to benefit all.

Respect human dignity. Rather than blame others for failure, we can draw on the experience and knowledge of each one to facilitate growth. When we hook new knowledge onto past ideas and expe­riences, we demystify complex new tactics that reduce. Growth begins with both knowledge and experience, so that we enjoy a role in the production of new approaches that incorporate unique abilities become our growth-producing engine.

Achieve innovation at minimum cost by using local resources. Often, the best resources are those closest to us. We are nourished and ener­gized through shared responsibility for positive changes. Experts may also bring specialized resources, such as the ability to use new technology effectively to help us resolve problems without anxiety.

Complete all tasks with excellence and evaluate each. Through performance- based assessment, or the direct observation and rating of performance, evaluation becomes an ongoing process. Brain based assessments of our progress include opportunities to apply new neural discoveries to real-life situations in ways that achieve stress-free and excellent problem-solving approaches.

Share what we learn with others. Unless shared, ideas and new approaches have little power to bring about lasting changes. Growth becomes interactive and active. Any setting can be charged with enthusiasm, when we offer folks a place at the helm of their personal growth. Stress-free practices may include Gardner’s eight ways of applying solutions through filters of music, dance, dining, industrial frameworks, art, historic re­ports, and samples of architectural designs.

Create both personal and group satisfaction. As we interact, we gain new appreciation and interest, not only in ideas but also in one another. Our circles benefit through group satisfaction that arises from this holistic approach toward growing and leading new stress-free problem-solving skills together.

Base innovation on wisdom, not mere knowledge. Many believe the process of lasting change is spiritual, not merely intellectual. Inuit leaders on Baffin Is­land emphasize that wisdom includes such distinct characteristics as kindness, hu­mility, caring, putting others first, and building community. These characteristics are often modeled by Inuit leaders and participants and in circles they build with in community. An overall observation I made while in the Arctic is that Inuit innovation draws more on participants’ beliefs and values and draws less on rigid facts from texts or water-tight answers.

Change takes buy-in and support to succeed, so we engage others at the onset, through two-footed questions, such as “What if …?” The best way to frame our inquiry is to ask a question that another person would most enjoy addressing.

Reflect to engage all! We cannot change others but we can change and grow ourselves to lead others toward growth with the kind of excellence and care that inspires leadership and participation from all.

Reflection after Tool 41 use: Most agree that change from telling to doing is rarely for the faint of heart, but here are 10 reasons to actively build stress-free problem-solving skills rather than listen to lectures about the perils of stress and anxiety. Below are 100 reasons to run from talks on anxiety reduction and build skills for calm.   

Have you considered lately how lectures, talks and delivering facts impact our ability to benefit from those facts? Below are 100 considerations.

When we believe anxiety describes a tough situation we’re stuck in today, we do little to avoid panic or seek new way out of our dilemma. If our beliefs about stress show anxiety as not normal and if its unable to demean our actions, we risk kind and hopeful responses, even in difficult settings.  Our beliefs about change and mental autonomy support freer actions and foster anti-anxiety approaches.

To see stress as an intruder is to seek ways to prevent its intrusion

COFFEE CONSIDERATION 42: We may feel frustrated by lack of  money, or lack of  support, and so we anxiously watch personal possibilities slip away, as our problem-solving skills seem to be inundated with anxiety laden problems.

Good news is here if we dip into personal mental resources.  Our brains come fully equipped with power-tools needed to step into a finer and anxiety-free future for ourselves and others we support.

Not that we can change others, or remove their stressful ways. We can’t. Nevertheless, regardless of the challenges we face, our brains are fearfully and wonderfully made to lead far finer directions forward than many of us realize. Our pathways can side-step chaos we encounter to create the calm we crave.

How so?

Let’s say we struggle with anxiety and feel unsure what causes our edgy concerns.  Check out brain-friendly choices that advance our autonomy to resolve whatever challenge we face. Use one of our multiple intelligences rarely used, and watch hopeful opportunities open to you.

Discover thankfulness in what we have, rather than focus on our limitations, and our brains shift gears into new possibilities. To the human brain spoken and lived expressions of gratitude reduce anxiety charged chemicals such as cortisol. See any opportunity here for mind-bending strength to march forward? Yes, in spite of obstacles we all encounter at one time or another.

Laugh at the little things and we lead others to laugh with us more. Laughter, even expressed in a casual smile will amp up the brain’s well-being chemical, serotonin. This aha hormone literally changes the chemistry of your brain. It fuels you mentally to tackle difficult challenges with renewed courage and problem-solving capability. Evidence of its operation, will be the rewards we take away from challenges we conquer. I learned this firsthand when I found myself left out on my own at 14, after my mother died of cancer. Change takes action, and action changes the brain, alters our beliefs about hope and showcases its evidence in mental wellbeing chemicals to fuel our way forward. Worth a shot?

Simply by the choices we make, we also inspire others to step toward delightful results in spite of challenges or chaos. How so?

For many years I tried to demonstrate that our education systems work against human brains. Then, I decided to create and make available  student-ready leadership and learning materials with fun brain based tools at my TpT site. By designing materials based on brain research I solved daily dilemmas secondary school and university faculty face, with neural solutions they use as tools.

Stubborn snags may sometimes slow us down, and broken systems resist change,  but our brains come equipped to link us to brilliant solutions we already possess. It’s merely a matter of connecting the problem to a brainy possibility.

Fail to connect to our brains and we may well miss an opportunity to bring about brilliance bits that power ourselves and others past daily traps. Let me explain. Let’s say somebody crosses us or we feel the need to correct a person we mentor. Sadly, we often lecture that person and therefore trigger a cranky chemical, cortisol in us and in the other person. Show kindness, smile and offer respect, even if we have to suck up an injustice though, and we woo ourselves and others into serotonin solutions!

Reflection after Tool 42 use: We could say we literally shift angry situations into peaceful solutions by tapping into personal DNA pools.

The opposite is also true. Lecture an already angry person and watch cortisol escalate rather than dissipate. Have you seen it when parents or teachers berate youth? Contrast that response with a parent who gets an upset child laughing and moving forward with confidence. It’s a brain thing…

Below are a few difficulties we all face from time to time, along with our brain’s ready-to-roll solutions to help reduce stress.

1. Lose keys lots? Try a simple memory tactic that outsources our keys to our working memory.

2. Feel bored? Capitalize on hidden and unused intelligences that awaken wonder.

3. Slip into loneliness sometimes? We all slip into loneliness – yet our brains come fully equipped to move us beyond lonely.

4. Struggle with anger? Snip our amygdala before it snipes us back. Here’s how.

5. Lack confidence? Play brain based games that boost confidence. with brainy alternatives.

6. Fear risks? Stack the deck for fun and creative risks.

7. Face unfairness? Discover what happens inside our brains when even-handedness goes missing in any day.

8. Stressed? Celebrate our social and emotional survival skills to take a step beyond stress.

Whatever the anxiety related problem, our amazing brains likely hold a custom-made remedy. It’s merely a matter of identifying the dilemma and accessing its neural stress-free solution within our amazing DNA. What do you think?

Just as we run from cynicism, we run from fear to remain healthy!

COFFEE CONSIDERATION 43: Spot a cynic and we see mental functions that also drive anxiety. Not that anxiety means we are cynics or bullies. Never! Yet the same chemical and electrical circuitry that drives bullies and cynics also pushes panic buttons and whips up worry! Yikes! Good thing we can do its opposite to see angst flee.

Only after we hit unethical walls raised by scorn from anxieties cynicism, do we value freedom flights toward its opposite brain functions – the curious mind. I’m speaking of that chronically negative, anxious person, who expresses disdain for innovative ideas, and who comes to expect that stressed brains rely on habit so that distrust reigns and delight hides.

For Russel Lynes, cynicism’s the pseudo-intellectual’s substitute for intelligence. For Norman Cousins it’s intellectual treason. For us? However you define it, the cynic’s anxiety ridden  brain leads a direction of disaster by tone that rushes to fuel and highlight the worst in us.  

Consider the mental equipment active in brains cynics and you see what fuels anxiety.

1. Amygdala for the cynic is that tiny sac of neurons that remains agitated most of the time, overheats easily, and triggers turmoil as an emotional pattern. How do we tame an anxious amygdala?

2. Cortisol releases from cynics like falls over Niagara, as its potent chemical slams people into stress and panic that shrinks human brains. What tactics do we use to counter that cortisol surge?

3. Neuron pathways for cynics create disagreeable expressions of gloom, and habitual synapses can reshape anxious moods or jade perspectives into permanent panic as we face problems over time. See how today’s actions to avoid anxiety shape tomorrow’s mental and emotional health?

4. Plasticity rewires the cynic’s anxious brain nightly for angry responses, and deep seated frustrations. Outwardly, poor tone packs punches that cripple opportunities to prosper calm and enjoyable approaches. Rewire against cynicism and panic by doing their opposites, since every action we take today helps to reshape the brain as we sleep tonight.

5. Dendrite brain cells connect negativity to negativity in the mind of an anxious or cynical brain, to regenerate mental stagnation not seen in the curious or calm. Practice one positive act and watch chemical and electrical activity reboot us mentally for more of the same.

6. Basal ganglia, with its propensity to default back to ruts, stores and replays worst habits of cynical or anxious minds till others can cite our complaints by heart. That’s why we see some people locked into racism, sexism and other poisonous or panicked practices picked up and played routinely without much thought.

7. Working memory sits unused and often remains mute for the anxious or cynic, who finds no need for mental equipment that prospers the curious or leaps into action for calm, solution-bound minds. Focus on facts that build concrete solutions in contrast,  and working memory tools spring into action to solve complex problems out of bounds to the cynical or anxious mind.

8. Brain chemicals refuel retched moods in cynics, with decreased natural drugs for well-being, and increased hormones for negative or anxious behavior.  Cynicism and anxiety block serotonin, sometimes referred as molecule of happiness, and both stir up chemicals that accompany disdain.

9. Serotonin sinks lower in mind of the anxious or cynic, leaving the brain without resources against anxiety, disquiet, anger, or conflict at work. Each cynical act can lower a brain’s natural serotonin supplies. Increase serotonin through healthy foods, exercise, and many behaviors that spike sincere satisfaction.

10. Brainwaves of cynics or anxious minds, rewire daily to reshape our mind for more cynical and panicked performances. Organized by a hierarchy, electrical waves control how neurons communicate for better or for worse, and cynical or anxious forces can surge a brain’s circuitry for negative outcomes.

Reflection after Tool 43 use: Sadly, over time cynics no longer see cause for change, because anxious brains work against that possibility.  Anxiety and cynicism leave their victims craving attention and creating conflict much like addicts crave drugs or drunks cause oppression. In either case mental tools shut down. In fact, looking back at mistakes, the cynic often chills to bitter regrets, while rarely taking advantage of mental equipment tapped by curious minds who build finer futures. Know any molecular switch that could turn off cynical cravings or anxiety’s angst in our day?

The brain releases fear when it pursues love

COFFEE CONSIDERATION 44: In Touched by an Angel, Maya Angelou suggested, “love strikes away the chains of fear… it is only love which sets us free.”  Angelou affirmed neural and cognitive sciences call to flee cortisol-fueled fear by embracing serotonin-fueled love. Not tough love, but unconditional love. We may not be able to control stress that clobbers us, yet we can control our calm and loving reactions.

With each of the 22 average stressors that hit us on an ordinary day we will choose fear or calm, depending on learned reactions. To act fearfully is to stir up cortisol chemicals and shut down brainpower for the innovative answers many of us crave. We can learn to flee fear before it blocks mental courage and prevents new possibilities.

When fear causes reactions such as venting, these are stored in our amygdala, and they will surface again in similar difficult situations. Love locks in the tools we need to face reality with courage.

Let’s say we want to flee fear of losing memory for example.  Research supports common reasons that memory can fade through stress,  pregnancy or menopause, thyroid problems, long-term excessive drinking, normal aging, head injury, some drugs, concussion or depression.

If we sense memory loss we then  wire  for either fear or freedom. The opposite of rewiring for calm and inner love through inclusive tone skills, for instance, is to wire for gridlock, fear and compromise. The potential within caring tone tools from neuroplasticity – can rewire entire communities for emphasizing and attaining more positive, compassionate targets from deeper DNA pools.

The flip side of memory loss is to develop tactics that sharpen memory when we need it most. For example, hook a new fact onto something already known. Whenever we link ideas to something familiar, we hang new knowledge hats onto familiar hooks inside our cranium. See how new facts stick when we flee fear?

Reflection after Tool 44 use: When new facts hook onto known facts, our brain remembers where to find both. Take the lost keys, discussed earlier.  I hook keys in the same place daily and luckily haven’t had to search for years. What could we remember for a finer and fear-free day?

People far younger than me waste endless hours looking for lost keys, while new research about memory and aging brains brings amazing good news monthly for those who calmly use its tools.

Simple memory tricks magically free up our working memory  to focus on integrating new facts needed to solve real-life problems with life-changing actions. We are liberated to love and care rather than panic and fear.

We are freed to use more, working memory that holds new facts a very short time, so we may wish to  sketch the fact in a quick image or diagram next to its meaning.

Learned forgetfulness can be turned around today into a new brain based memory tool for tomorrow. New research about plasticity enables us to rewire your brain nightly as we sleep. It’s based on activities we do in memory’s favor that day. In other words, try any of the tips in this post, and that action alone will build new dendrite cell changes for remembering more and fearing less.

Try any of the new tricks below and jog our memory to calm down, develop inner confidence, and we’ll likely retrieve facts we need.

Start here just for the fun of remembering – and then try one tip to add zip that will stoke your day.

a. Eat light and avoid fats and sugars before a talk, presentation or a think tank.

b. Stay calm and link what we hear to what we already know so when we hear a name we link it to a feature on a person’s face. I once met a guy called “Harry Bignose,” who had a hairy nose the size of a country pump. OK – that one was easy.

c. Attach a small hook onto our keys and snap them onto a belt or bag, but make sure it is the same place repeatedly, so our brain grows new neuron connectors for finding keys in the same place.

d. Tell somebody else about these tips and tools to improve holiday memories. Did you know that to teach a thing at the same time we learn it, helps us retain 90% more of what we learn. Not bad returns for sharing a simple tip to help a forgetful friend.

e. Thank people around us for anything they do in our favor and our brain stirs in serotonin, a hormone that fuels well being. Not surprisingly, serotonin also opens the brain to peak memories, just as anger causes the brain to forget.

Did I just say we can teach our brain to forget?  OK, it’s true … and now the secret is out. Our brain operates more by how we use it for love rather than for fear, than by our age. Good news for those who plan more than gracious existence and expect to age voraciously – with memory in tact.

Teens also love to use these 25 brain based study skill tips to learn more, in less time, and with fun strategies, that draw more from their awesome brains.

It’s often a simple case of outsourcing core facts, to free up our mind to relax and enjoy a holiday, for instance. How so? Why not remember directions next time a person tells us three turns at main intersections – by outsourcing brief details into a list written to ensure our memory’s peak performance to get us there. Simply list three adventures you plan to do on your holiday. Then do them delightfully, whether alone or with others.

Emotional health often determines our change or stagnation, and new research shows how our emotions survive even after memories vanish.

Only low intrapersonal IQ can keep us stressed, alone or overwhelmed during a holiday, while others with higher emotional IQ seem to revel in festivity and fun. As discussed earlier, our brains hold enormous working memory tools for another run at an overcoming life in a healthier, more enjoyable lane.

When we live each day as if love could triumph over fearful setbacks, we also lift our capacity to live well when barriers appear. Scott Fitzgerald said it best. “It’s never too late to change and to choose new adventures that will replace old habits that hold us back for another year.”

Hope is our mental and emotional antidote to despair and distress

COFFEE CONSIDERATION 45: Hope is to our brains what a bright light is to a dark tunnel. It’s the mental energy to remain calm in stressful situations that seem impossible. With hope we survive difficulties and can support others in tough times since hope removes the veil over our perception and thought. No surprise that researchers such as Dr. J. Groopman also found that hope fortifies prosperity and raises our immunity to stress and sickness.     

In his book,  The Anatomy of Hope, Groopman stated, “Hope is different from blind optimism: it brings reality into sharp focus.”

My international brain based work showed hope to also fuel Intrapersonal IQ, which elevates our minds over panic or past anxiety and eliminates common fears by rewiring our brains through acts of courage. In fact, hope fuels multiple intelligences just as hopelessness tends to fade whenever we find courage for intrapersonal activities that increase thickness in our cerebral cortex, especially in areas of attention and sensation. Reconnect neurons of wellbeing, and we support neuron pathways to hope.

Check out a FREE Intelligence Survey Here  to see which go-to intelligences will reboot hope as our problem solving tool. Let’s also teach our teens and young adults to use their wider range of capabilities for engaging hopeful solutions in difficult times!

What if we targeted multiple intelligences to develop higher IQ for hopeful economic problem-solving in a pandemic season?

1. Mathematical or logical intelligence enables us to trace and engage new logical chains of reasoning to discern where solvable problems are rooted.

2. Verbal linguistic intelligence enables us to read, research and discuss accurate economic trends, as well as writing a plan for economic growth, and perhaps even proposing a possible new approach to our bank manager. If he or she hears and acts on our good ideas, we can be assured we are growing hope in this mental domain.

3. Musical or rhythmic intelligence enables us to compose musical solutions or emulate those who have expanded our world through musical interjections. Listen to words in the song, Lean on Me, and we begin to pull people together to find collective solutions, rather than divide or insist on getting our own way when trouble strikes.

4. Visual spatial intelligence enables us to create or use images, graphs, or visual portrayals to understand and explain economic problems and possibilities. We grow this domain of our intelligence when we use visuals to see and act on hopeful pathways forward for ourselves and others.

5. Bodily-kinesthetic intelligence enables us to engage in movement, building and handling materials in ways that deepen understanding about past economic challenges. This unique capability enables us to rebuild our surrounding to accommodate more hopeful opportunities.

6. Interpersonal or social intelligence enables us to discern and respond well to moods, temperaments, motivation, and desires of different people as they relate to economic bust and boom. Are we surrounding ourselves with people who rebuild for hopeful solutions, and avoiding those who seem to delight in doom?

7. Intrapersonal or introspective intelligence enables us to show self-knowledge, act with integrity and discriminate between good or bad personal choices for our benefit and the benefit of others around us.

8. Naturalistic intelligence enables us to use mental tools that draw on patterns and designs in nature as a way to see real world problems and propose nature-related solutions for growth.

A new look at the brainpower within multiple intelligences helps us to improve problem-solving – by targeting more brainpower for hopeful possibilities and better results going forward.

Reflection after Tool 45 use: Let’s say we activate mental and emotional reward centers through music that inspires hope for instance. In this way, we can boost moods as well as improve neural survival well past those challenging obstacles. 

Our brain operates hope as its power tool to rebuild after trouble (such as coronavirus pandemic) strikes. Unfortunately however, our brain also slides into despair, a pre-condition that prevents us from accessing hope’s best benefits at times. Did you know for instance, that laughter sets the brain’s stage for hope that heals us from hardships?

Luckily, we can change approach, whenever past problems or pre-conditions leave us feeling hopeless, or ready to blame others for stressors that strike. In fact, our IQ or capacity to construct hopeful solutions is less fixed than once believed. Furthermore, intelligence is more fluid, and hopeful solutions more mentally available in trauma situations, than once realized.

Not surprisingly the creator of our first intelligence test taught that intelligence can be increased. We assumed our IQ score answered the question, “How hopeful are you?”

So why do so many of us tend to feel inadequate when faced with coronavirus challenges? Why do we fear that intelligence we are born with appears to limit our hope-filled capabilities now that we face so much loss?

When we understand the elastic fluidity of our intelligence we answer to a very different question, How are we hopeful? In similar ways we engage the question, How are we smart? rather than, How smart are we? Simply stated, tangible ways exist to be more hopeful and smarter. Luckily, our brains come equipped to open mental access into hope’s problem solving skills that will improve our situation.

For those of us who enjoy the fluidity of intelligence, we reboot constantly to show evidence of hope’s growth and change across multiple mental domains. How so?

Henry Ford summed up the brain’s hope tools when he said, “Whether you believe you can do a thing, or fear you cannot, either way you are correct. Believe IQ is fixed, and we fix past mental outcomes of despair when storms strike, as well as limit our performance to one familiar watermark. Believe IQ is fluid, however, and our brains are more apt to run with hopeful possibilities in ways that help us to perform at mastery levels. We now know that our collective IQ increases about 3 points every decade. Hopeful? Yes, and we then ask, what would it take to increase hope for ourselves and others in a pandemic today?

COFFEE CONSIDERATION 46: Start with our talents and we end with productivity and emotional wellbeing. Let’s consider this inventory one item at a time to see how we identify and activate talents that sidestep panic and stress.

First, see how I completed each Interest Inventory item below by adding my personal responses after every statement. Then following the inventory I created tasks that use a strength or talent I possess. Hopefully my example will help you to uncover a few hidden talents you possess.

1. Three words that describe me are… Writer, Curious, Fun

2. Things I like to do most are … Golf, Discuss new ideas, Invent

3. I’d love to learn more about … How to create cool videos

4. Someday I’d really like to… Be part of learning change at work and home

5. Learning is fun for me when… All speak up and feel heard

6. If I could improve anything about school, it would be…Add fun

7. I like to get praise for…Caring deeply about others

8. When I do something well, I like … To be thanked

9. I wonder a lot about… How the brain can benefit more people

10. I like people who… Laugh at themselves, stay open minded

11. Sometimes I worry about… Our world losing its kindness

12. One thing that really bothers me is… Leaders who dominate

13. Something that really challenges me is… Helping others well

14. One thing I know about me is… I am a possibility thinker, and I tackle most problems with possibilities in mind.

Our talents come in delightfully unique shapes, sizes and colors. In this interest inventory task, our talents become our tools against anxiety in difficult situations. Brains cannot exercise strengths and engage weaknesses such as worrying, since that will bottleneck our abilities. So we simply choose strengths to go after and anxiety begins to fade in response.

Reflection after Tool 46 use:

1. Words that describe me such as Writer, Curious, and Fun also offer opportunities to sidestep stress in this way: I will pass along my written ideas here to support to a good friend who may be struggling under the weight of worry today.

2. Words that describe things I like to do most, such as Golf, Discuss new ideas, and Invent also offer opportunities to sidestep stress in this way: I exercised to get ready for my golf league game coming up. The stretching exercises brought me serotonin and removed any reasons to waste my time worrying.

3. Words that describe me such as, How to create cool videos reminded me to look up and reflect on a video I created to describe serotonin at this site

4. Words that describe me such as, Be part of learning change at my daily setting, offered me the chance to suggest on a twitter discussion, a new approach and blog that suggests learning that adds happiness.

5. Words that describe me such as having fun when all speak up and feel heard, gave me the opportunity to brainstorm with a friend how I will start hosting dinner dialogues at my home to facilitate diverse voices on hot topics.

6. Words that describe me such as improve anything about my setting, include the fact that I would like to add fun, and so today I will post a fun new way to leave others appreciated and ourselves more victors than victims.

7. Words that describe me such as liking to get praise for caring deeply about others lead me to the task of planning my upcoming foundation, which will offer resources directly to single moms who often get left behind by charities.

8. Words that describe me such as what I like when I do something well, are to be thanked, and that reminds me to openly thank all those who stepped up to help people who felt isolated during this pandemic scare.

9. Words that describe me such as I wonder a lot about… How the brain can benefit more people, left me ready to embrace curiosity and define more clearly what I can do here to ensure all benefit from less angst and more wonder expressed today.

10. Words that describe me such as I like people who laugh at themselves, and stay open minded, remind me that I can laugh at myself during the upcoming move that left me a bit stressed.

11. Words that describe me such as sometimes I worry about our world losing its kindness help me to list a few ways that would motivate more kindness to encourage myself and others when the chips are down.

12. Words that describe me such as one thing that really bothers me is leaders who dominate now challenge me to write and post about the brain based traits of leaders who welcome diverse voices, as compared to those who dominate.

13. Words that describe me such as something that really challenges me is helping others well will challenge me to redefine how I can help more in ways that draw from my personal cache of strengths rather than from guilt about others’ lists of help needed.

14. Words that describe me such as one thing I know about me is that I am a possibility thinker, and I tackle most problems with possibilities in mind, now have me challenged to list one problem today (such as finding a new place to live) and taking the first step to a solution that I launch as a result.

Do my inventory responses help you to see how we can turn strengths or talents into an engine for shifting away from angst and moving toward awe? Yes, even in the wake of this pandemic or other personal traumas. What does your interest inventory reveal about your strengths and their opportunities to sidestep stress? What task will you pursue today to move the dial?

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