Thursday July 10th, 2008
by: Ed Mayberry, July 10, 2008 10:07:00 am
Dr. Kathryn Cramer says when you change the way you see yourself, you treat your personal priorities with the same level of importance as you do external demands.
"Changing your bias from deficits—what's wrong, what's problematic, what's weak, what is missing — to a focus on assets — what's strong, what's possible. Most of us grow up by nurture, and as human beings, by nature we are hard-wired, really, to have a bias towards deficit-based thinking. We know now through the research that you can intentiaonally shift what yuo scanned for, hence the title 'Change the Way You See.'"
Dr. Cramer says in the business world, whether someone is reactive or proactive makes all the difference in the face of relentless daily demands.
"People who apply these principles to life and work are the ones that get the most traction. It's a real discipline. It takes maybe three months, 90 days, to really get to the point where you can notice when you're in deficit-based thinking, and then you can make a shift into a what we call ABT, Asset-Based Thinking, for short. The asset-based thinking channel of mind is the one that'll take you farther, get you there faster, create a 'don't miss' life that gives you the rewards of being on that 'positive side of life' ledger."
Cramer says changing the way you see yourself helps you navigate through the ups and downs by letting your purpose and passions guide the way.
"When you change the way you see yourself, you can change anything. Most of us in this 24/7 complex world feel very small. So this book is really aimed at giving people a chance to change the way they see their own power. The inner sources of power — your mission and purpose in life — we call it "the might cause." What were you born to do? Many of us are working at jobs that are not conected to what it is that we were actually born to do, and it's actually a very short trip. You are able . You can, if you want to connect even the most mundane job experience to a higher purpose."
Dr. Cramer says life becomes an adventure when you decide the destinations, using surprise, serendipity and even setbacks to make the journey more interesting.
"There are fewer of us, perhaps, that are born an optimist. Forty to fifty percent of our optimism is under our direct control. So no matter what we were born, you know, tending towards the glass half-full or half-empty, we can raise that optimism by developing the kinds of assets that we talk about in asset-based thinking." Ed: "Whereas most people assume you're either born an optimist or pessimist and you stay that way." "Yeah, we think of it more as a fixed personality characteristic. It really isn't. An asset-based thinker can be a glass half-full or a glass half-empty person. The question is 'how do I raise the water line? What do I have to work with?'"
Ed Mayberry, KUHF Houston Public Radio News.