When I reflect on the idea of courage, a particular moment from high school stands out in my mind.

Two of my close friends (both of whom happened to be large, broad-shouldered, football players) were physically brawling in front of our school. Upon realizing what was happening, I marched my 5’6” frame through the crowd that had gathered to watch, and positioned myself right in between the two boys yelling, “Stop!” By the grace of God, and my cat like reflexes, I ducked just as one of my friends threw a powerful fist at the other, ignoring the fact that I was standing between them.

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Living with Courage – Blog at joyofit.org

When I reflect on the idea of courage, a particular moment from high school stands out in my mind.

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How We Grow

In her book The Outstanding Organization, author Karen Martin uses her 20+ years working with hundreds of successful businesses to identify four foundational elements that are present and essential in organizations that she, as an expert in the OD field, defines as outstanding. Those that make the cut as “outstanding” are only those that have “consistently delivered high value, relative to the alternatives, to stakeholders for years, if not decades.” The principles she discovered that provide the foundational framework for outstanding organizations to become just that are: clarity, focus, discipline, and engagement. In her view, these four elements are directly related to the amount of chaos an organization experiences. And, as you might have guessed, chaos is the root cause for an organizational diagnosis of anything less than outstanding.

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Living in Humility and Confidence: The Great Paradox!

Written by Monte Schmidt, Counselor at Living Wholehearted

Whether leading ourselves, our loved ones, a small group or an organization, most people intuitively desire to have these two powerful words describe them as a leader: humility and confidence. But how is this done? Can it be done? At first glance, these two powerful words appear to be on opposite ends of the spectrum. They seem to cancel each other out, or work against each other like a teeter-totter in motion, either being up or down but never on top at the same time.

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What is “Healthy” Sexuality Anyways?

Written by Melinda Arnold, M.A. LPC, Certified Sex Therapist

Sexuality is a topic that comes up frequently in counseling. It is a subject that touches each of us, though I have found that understanding what “healthy sexuality” is continues to elude most individuals. Discussing the subject often becomes a conversation about what is not healthy and can become a shame-fueled list of “do”s and “don’t”s. Limiting our understanding of sexuality to a list of morally acceptable behaviors does not adequately describe what “healthy” is, let alone what “sexuality” is.

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MyCourageousGirls.com: Building Trust in a Guarded World

Co-Founder Terra Mattson has written a great article on trust on the MyCourageousGirls.com website. Courageous Girls is a curriculum that Terra has developed to “help moms discover their own courage in raising a daughter who knows herself as LOVED”

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The Miracle of 16 Minutes

I am practicing the discipline of being unhurried (insert long sigh here).

After launching a counseling and organizational business with my husband, managing a private practice and a team of ten practitioners, starting Courageous Girls, publishing my first book, raising two girls, living life-on-life with our community and church, carpooling, doing laundry, laundry, laundry and squeezing in a date here and there, I had just about come to the point where all I needed was a partridge in a pear tree. But then, I had an awakening; I realized I needed to return to the days of margin, the days of saying “no-thank you” and breathing a little deeper as I wait for the next thing on my calendar (instead of tripping on my shoes and running into the wall on my way out the door).

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A Key for High Trust Organizations: Turn Towards Others vs. Turning Away From Them

One would assume that highly profitable companies have healthy work environments; this is true for some of the professional organizations that grace the pages of Forbes and the Wall Street Journal. However, they just as likely might not.

In my line of work, I look beyond marketing hype, the cultural values espoused on walls, and flyers over the water cooler. If I simply pay attention to the people within an organization, for even just a short period of time, I’ll feel their pulse. The importance of this information is that I can then use it to evaluate how a company can operate more productively. If there are places within the organization that could use some fine-tuning, I can bring awareness to them. I am not looking to catch companies doing something wrong; rather, I am on mission to assess, solve, and ultimately prevent the root-level personnel issues that fuel broader, systemic problems that most organizational leaders deal with today.

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Play Therapy, Unpacked

For those not familiar with Play Therapy, it may seem like an odd concept. As a required course in my graduate studies program, I distinctly remember thinking that “this is definitely not going to be something I utilize as a therapist.” I couldn’t have been more wrong. In a nutshell, the Play Therapy treatment method helps children process what they have experienced, make sense of their reactions and feelings to their experiences, and ultimately helps them achieve a greater sense of self so that they feel okay with who they are. Play, in its simplest form, is a natural – yet dynamic – self-healing process children engage in. Just as adults use talk therapy to help process their experiences (trauma, grief, anxiety, relational issues, etc.), children use toys and simple play as symbolic self-expression. Spend five minutes observing a park full of kids — you’ll see all kinds of stories, imaginative play, active motor skills, and self-regulation happening. Garry Landreth, a pioneer of Child Centered Play Therapy, sums it up well: “The toys are their [children’s] words, and play is their language.” 

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