Dove with Branch
November 19, 2007 Insights From the Dean of Peace
Notes from the Dean's Desk


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Ask the Dean?
Dean Van Leuven   Global Struggle

Dear Dean, My best friend often tells me he is going to do something for me such as come over and help me but he never does. Last week he promised he would come over and help me rake the leaves but he never showed up. The next time I saw him he never even mentioned it, let alone say he was sorry. How can I get him to do what he says? - Carl in Palo Alto

Dear Carl, You might ask him if he would like a reminder call. Perhaps that morning, or when you are about ready to start. He has developed this behavior pattern that he has apparently chosen to do nothing about. If you reject him perhaps he will care enough to change, but don't count on it. If you want to keep the relationship the thing you must learn is to expect that kind of behavior as normal for him, and not be upset by unrealized expectations based on his promises. - the Dean

Dear Dean, My wife has told me that I must quit shouting at her when I get upset or she is going to leave me. She makes a lot of mistakes and doesn't seem to care about making them right. I was taught that when someone makes a mistake they are obligated to fix it. I don't shout at her because she makes mistakes, I shout at her because to doesn't fix them they way she should. What do you suggest? - Taylor in Las Cruces

Dear Taylor, Your expectations of your wife don't match her way of looking at the world. She has a habit of not doing things the way you want them done and you have a habit of being upset when she doesn't. You have a habit that causes you to believe she should do it your way. The way you respond is just a belief and a habit you have. Your belief is not serving you well. If you want to keep the relationship, you need to learn to respond differently. If you can't do it on your own I suggest a counselor; or my book. - the Dean

I welcome questions and/or comments from our readers. Send your Ask the Dean questions or comments to: P.O. Box 535, Elmira, OR 97437, or visit to submit by e-mail.

Law, Politics & Society ... As I see them
  Globe Magnify Glass

My personal mission and goal is to bring peace to every country and every individual in the entire world. From the beginning of time humans have dreamed about living in a peaceful world, even though many of us still feel doomed by history, human greed and our fear and anger. We have now learned that a new way of thinking is possible that will bring us the peace and love that we all desire. We have learned that we are the creators of our own fear and anger and that we can learn to make new and more positive choices for our lives. By learning to understand, and how to make changes, we are each capable of producing loving relationships within our world.

Universal education was the great beginning that makes this all possible. The next step is to expand the learning process so that we possess emotional intelligence to match our great intellectual intelligence. We can accomplish our mission by bringing emotional education to everyone starting with our children. We gather the spiritual principles that have been discovered and taught by all of the great religions of the world. We learn to evaluate the world based on the results of events rather than our personal belief of how the world should be.

SEWA-Nepal has been chosen as the developmental field and proving ground for this great mission. SEWA-Nepal ( has been created to demonstrate to the people of Nepal and the world how this can be accomplished by teaching the people of Nepal the skills necessary to transform their own personal world - and ultimately the entire world. Our World will be exactly what we make of it!

Creating a Peaceful New World
  World Peace

Satisfying and positive relationships result from our mutual caring about and assisting each other, not from obligation. While others have no obligation to meet our needs, they often find that they benefit from doing so. When we help others, we often get much more in return. Being of service to others will provide much happiness. It will also remove many of the potential negative emotion producing situations from our life.

Too often we end up manipulating others to do things our way, without even realizing it. This creates negative feelings because it is not what they want to do and they will therefore resist us. And this resistance will cause us both to be upset. This takes energy that could better be used in more constructive ways. Learn not to impose your own expectations on others. Learn not to expect from others. Learn to be your own person and learn to honor the rights of others to be their own person. If you think that the world or some other person owes you something, then you have set yourself up for negative feelings whenever the things you think should happen don't happen. When you learn not to expect from others both they and you will end up being happier and more fulfilled.

Furthermore, the expectations of others are going to be different than yours, and when you assume they are going to be, or think they should be, the same as yours you cause yourself problems. We create conflict for ourselves all the time by assuming that others expect what we expect.

Tips for Peaceful and Joyful Living
  Left Arrow

Monday: I recognize that others are not obligated to do things the way I would like them done.

Tuesday: I do not expect others to do things my way.

Wednesday: I appreciate it when others do things even if it isn't just the way I would like.

Thursday: I will refrain from manipulating others to do things my way.

Friday: I do not expect others to do things just the way I would like them done.

Saturday: It is okay for others to do things differently than I do.

Sunday: I honor the opinions of others just as I honor my own opinions.

Dean Van Leuven is a psychologist, conducts workshops and is the author of A Peaceful New World and many other books dealing with quality of life issues. Contact him on the web at:

Additional Notes

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