Dove with Branch
June 06, 2011 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, Business relationships have become very casual and informal. Sometimes workers on the production line even call me by my first name. I have earned the respect through schooling and hard work. I should be paid the respect I am due. . I get e-mails saying hi to me. I think I deserve more respect than that. - Bradford in MA

Dear Bradford, If it is your company, you can probably have it any way you want it. However, the person who calls you by your first name may feel that he is respecting you by considering you his equal and his friend when using your first name. He wants friendship - you want respect. You are the boss; decide how you want it in your company. When you are doing that, think about what will be the most productive and friendliest working conditions for your employees. You may want to reconsider the idea that people owe you something just because of your position. - the Dean

Dear Dean, A worker in my office is causing many hard feelings. She is trying to get ahead by making other people look bad. She blames others for her mistakes and tries to take credit for our work. She tries to make my supervisor think I am not doing a good job. How do I solve this problem? - Claudia in MD

Dear Claudia, By doing nothing about it! If you enter into the game your fellow worker is playing, it will only cause you more trouble. Your supervisor is not stupid, and will be able to figure out what is going on. You both will ultimately be recognized for what you are contributing. Don't let this negatively affect your performance. Do you're best and if it isn't recognized in a positive way then you need to find a place to work where you will be recognized. - the Dean

I welcome questions and/or comments from our readers. Send your Ask the Dean questions or comments to: 90022 Sheffler Rd., Elmira, OR 97437, or visit to submit by e-mail.

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

As a people we have embraced the idea of an end to warfare and that we would like to live in peace. But at the same time we have not accepted the idea that our world can be peaceful. We see it as a world where we are all competing for limited resources and if we don't prevail, we won't survive. We believe in survival of the fittest so we see life as a struggle to survive.

If we stop and reflect for a moment we will realize that we are using much of those "limited resources" just for the struggle. We use about half of our national resources in this country just to support our fight for survival (supremacy) as a nation. We make our legal system an adversarial system and give half the resources (money) to the warriors (lawyers). If we could just double our available resources by learning to get along with each other, and find peaceful resolutions to our problems we could double the standard of living for everyone! The petroleum we use to provide for our military needs could be used to solve our current gasoline shortage problem. It would release a lot of our mental energy for finding long term solutions to our energy needs as well.

When we can't think beyond our present need for preservation we don't do a good job of providing for the future. Let's start looking more outside the box for solutions to our problems. Let's look more for solutions that will enrich our quality of life. Let's be more open to change. We know things aren't working exactly the way we want them to be. Let's be more respectful of others, they are trying to solve the same problems. They are just working with a different vision. Let's work on creating a new common vision and then work on solving our common problems together.

Creating a Peaceful New World
  World Peace

Be your own person and 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 anger when things that you think should happen don't. When we learn not to expect from others, we both end up being happier, and more fulfilled.

Furthermore, the expectations of others are going to be different than our own, and to assume that they are the same will only cause problems. We create conflict for ourselves all the time by assuming that others expect what we expect. This is especially obvious in marriage. We often marry someone expecting that they will act according to society's accepted rules for marriage partners, or the same way our parents did, or that our marriage will resemble that of our parents in some general way. .

But we have no right to expect that someone live up to our expectations unless they agree to. Just because they marry us doesn't mean that our partner has agreed to do the cooking and the cleaning, or to be the breadwinner. Anything you consider important in your marriage should be agreed to ahead of time. Remember that the customary ways that things are done in this society are just general rules, and are only relevant to those who accept them. Don't fall into the trap of thinking someone should be a certain way just because most others are.

Tips for Peaceful and Joyful Living
  Left Arrow

Monday: Think about the things you do just to make others happy.

Tuesday: Think about doing or not doing those things in a way that makes everyone happy.

Wednesday: Think about the things that you expect others to do your way.

Thursday: Accept that others are free to do or not as they choose.

Friday: When you have a difference of opinion with someone, ask them about their expectations.

Saturday: Talk with your partner and/or friends about their expectations of you.

Sunday: Release others from the expectations you have of them.

Dean Van Leuven is a psychologist, conducts workshops and is the author of Life Without Anger and many other books dealing with quality of life issues. Contact him on the web at:

Additional Notes

The World Emotional Literacy League in conjunction with World Without Anger and Lumbini Buddhist University has taken on the task of introducing emotional literacy training in the educational system of Nepal nationwide. In support of that program I will be conducting workshops throughout the United States and Canada. These workshops will provide an introduction to the emotional skills training program as well as an introduction to establishing emotional skills training programs in your local area. The program and my workshops are based on my textbook "Emotional Intelligence - Taking Control of Your Life."

I have taken on the task of supporting the teaching of emotional skills training in the educational system with the trust and hope, that many in your community will be able to share in the vision of this great work, and join us in this amazing project. We are promoting a "Sponsor a School" program to raise awareness and support throughout the U.S. & Canada If you have any interest in the program and/or having a workshop in your area. Contact me for additional information.

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