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Even More FREE Holiday Gift Ideas

Even MORE FREE Holiday Gift Ideas you give TO and OF yourself…A continuation of our version of “Joy to the World” from Cyndi Maxey & Kevin E. O’Connor

Listen to the world

And you will hear

A number of surprising things!

…The water cooler news is – you (!)

…The question from your kid is cool

The rumor mill holds more true information than one may initially guess. It’s not all bad and it’s usually not all good either. Your rumor mill may be on Facebook or the old fashioned face-to-face encounters in the employee cafeteria or the hallway at work.

Really listening at the water cooler at work is a gift to yourself in several ways: (1) it is a chance to practice the  “no gossip” rule. And that is, first measure if what you are about to say will HURT someone or HELP someone. How will your comments benefit them if uttered in their absence? If you ask this question every time you are tempted to add fuel to the gossip flame, you will stop an ugly habit that does no person good. (2) And it’s also a good time to find out what you’re doing wrong! Most often we are least aware of our own potential areas for change and improvement.   Why not use the water cooler setting to ask others for help? (3) And, last, if the water cooler news is misleading or false in some way about someone else, correct it immediately or say you’re uncomfortable hearing it…and leave!

John Buchanan, the pastor at Cyndi’s church, in Sunday’s sermon referred to the celebration of Christmas as the celebration of “… raw, earthy, worldly human life” and indeed there is such life out there if we listen to the world.

…The question from your kid is cool

Remember when your child was very, very little? The questions that were so endearing were often the ones you couldn’t answer well.

  • “How big is the sky?”
  • “Why is the sky blue?”
  • “Why do people get sick?”
  • “Why can’t we go?”
  • “When will we get there?”
  • “Why can’t we have a doggie?”

Back in those days you smiled at these questions, bluffed your way out of them, and cherished the mind that framed them.

And then the questions seemed to get less and less. Sometimes we  parents were the ones with questions about school, friends, texts, and Facebook. We were inquisitive and they were sometimes the bluffers.

But there is a new day we can manufacture with our children no matter how old they are nor how distant from us. We can do what Dale Carnegie recommended over 76 years ago: focus on being interested in them – not to get something from them, but to learn about them.

Children know when we think they are cool people and they know when they are being investigated and judged. When we are interested, truly interested, this they cannot ignore.

When we show real interest to our adult peers they feel affirmed.

The same is true with our children…when we do it.

And that is very cool.

STAY TUNED FOR MORE FREE GIFT IDEAS NEXT WEEK. Your feedback is always welcome.

Kevin and Cyndi

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