Rick Baker Thought Posts
Left Menu Space Holder

About the author

Name of author Rick Baker, P.Eng.

E-mail me Send mail
Follow me LinkedIn Twitter



<<  February 2019  >>

View posts in large calendar

Recent Comments

Comment RSS

Negative feelings cheat us: they take much energy from us and they give little of value in return.

by Rick Baker
On May 8, 2017

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

We feel good when we participate in fair & square deals!

We would be annoyed if someone else came by and started stealing our energy...

To ensure fairness we need to tell negative feelings to go away until they can deliver a better exchange.


Emotions & Feelings @ Work | Thought Tweets

Anxiety: be present, don't fret over it, observe it in real time, & learn what it takes to control it if it gets out of hand.

by Rick Baker
On May 7, 2017

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

Anxiety is in our genes...what we feel now is the legacy of the fight or flight 'wiring' that allowed our ancestors to bring us us.

In right-sized doses, anxiety energizes and hones focus.

In too-large doses, anxiety becomes a demon and destroys quality of life.


Emotions & Feelings @ Work | Thought Tweets

"Fear is (a) an impulse, (b) a habit, (c) a disease."

by Rick Baker
On May 4, 2017

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

That's a quote from Frank Channing Haddock's 'The Culture of Courage', (1910).

What an interesting view of fear.

What an interesting base for growing courage.

When lions charge...

by Rick Baker
On May 1, 2017

We live in a world, surrounded by external stimuli. We perceive stimuli in a variety of ways, some consciously and some not, and we have internal reactions. Certain stimuli trigger emotion-responses. Emotion-responses are innate.

Some examples of emotions [based on the research of Paul Ekman]: anger, disgust, embarrassment, excitement, fear, guilt, joy, pride in achievement, relief, sadness, satisfaction, sensory pleasure, shame, and surprise.

When emotions are triggered automatic body chemistry kicks in. This chemistry has been pre-concocted to bring about physiological change which will accompany/cause behavioural change.  Most of us are aware when our emotions kick in. We feel internal changes and our behaviour changes. All of us, with some diligent work, can thoroughly understand the nature and implications of our emotions, why they are happening and what impact they have on our thoughts and our behaviour. When we take the time to study our emotion-responses we have the opportunity to replace unplanned emotion-driven activity with well-thought-through, logical post-emotion activity.  Like any other desired behavior, this will require effort and practice in order to develop the emotion-response skills we desire.

The first step is to understand emotions...

Paul Ekman’s research provides a helpful ‘platform’ for understanding emotions.

In summary, emotions are not the feelings/mindsets/thoughts we carry around in our brains. Emotions are the short-lived automatic responses our bodies have when exposed to certain stimuli, particularly external stimuli. A commonly-cited example is the emotion of fear. When lions charge at us and we see that happening our bodies, without any conscious effort on our part, quickly generate/release chemicals to prepare us for fight or flight. That’s one example of how the emotion of 'fear' can be triggered.

More thoughts about the emotion called 'fear'.

The next step is to understand our [personal] emotion-responses…


Emotions & Feelings @ Work

For situations you cannot control, learn how to avoid feeling anger, anxiety, fear & frustration.

by Rick Baker
On Apr 29, 2017

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

When people find themselves in situations they cannot control their reaction is, naturally, one of discomfort. For some people, the discomfort is extreme. This discomfort often leads to thoughts and actions that lead to dysfunction, stress, and a host of other negative things. 

We can learn how to do better than that.

We can teach ourselves how to do better than that.


Emotions & Feelings @ Work | Thought Tweets

No question about it, people are interested in learning how to kill good ideas

by Rick Baker
On Apr 27, 2017

A number of years ago, I posted the following thoughts about how to kill good ideas.

It is interesting to see a number of people liked the contrarian approach. Perhaps we should spend more time communicating about how to kill good ideas? Perhaps that would encourage people to come up with more-creative ways of squashing one another's innovations, inventions, and creative thoughts? Perhaps this could go a long way toward throttling that annoying habit called Curiosity?

Regardless, at least we have 4 proven ways of getting the job done!


4 ways to kill a good idea

By Rick Baker
On Oct 4, 2011

As mentioned recently, I read a really interesting book. It taught me how to kill good ideas.
Here is a sample of what I learned, 4 ways to kill good ideas:
  1. Fear Mongering…use genuine facts from the past to create a picture of a fearful future You know many people agonize over the mistakes they have made in the past. And they worry horrible events will repeat themselves…causing misery. So, when someone has a good idea and you want to kill it you can try this strategy. Just recall some extremely painful event from the past and express your concern that this terrifying situation could happen again if we accept this new idea.

  2. Death by Delay…one great way to do this is send the idea to a committee 

    Here’s a nuance you can incorporate when you use this strategy. Dig up some abstruse fact from your company’s history. Applaud the idea then introduce the abstruse fact and talk as if you are convinced the idea and the abstruse fact must be addressed by a committee of various intelligent people. Suggest a chairperson for the committee…i.e., suggest someone you know to be a curmudgeon. 
  3. Confusion…inject lots of irrelevant facts and support them with illogical arguments

    Keep a list of irrelevant facts in a file in the MemoPad area of your BlackBerry. Gather these over time, wean out the weakest ones, and replace them as you find really-choice irrelevant facts. Have at least a dozen fresh irrelevant facts ready for use. Then, whenever people come up with ideas pull out your BlackBerry while stating something like, 'What a synchronicity…I was writing some notes around that topic last week'. Then go on to cite a list of irrelevant facts…keep it up until at least one person dozes off.
  4. Ridicule…with a good-natured demeanour and calm voice, assassinate the character of the person who has the idea

    This one should come with a warning: DO NOT show anything close to a negative emotion while you do this. That could backfire on you, making you look like some sort of unreasonable person. CAUTION: this will take practice…if you are real busy then pick another strategy. To pull this one off you must be pleasant and calm. You must prepare your assassinating words well in advance and practice them in front of a mirror so they come across just right. I recognize that is barely an introduction to this 4th way to kill ideas. But, a more-detailed explanation is beyond the scope of this Thought Post.
You may be saying to yourself, surely there must be more ways to kill good ideas.
Yes, do not fret; of course there are many other wonderful ways to kill ideas.
The book I am referring to is ‘Buy-In, saving your good idea from being shot down’, John P. Kotter and Lorne A. Whitehead. According to the authors of the book I just read, the average person receives about 10,000 ideas [other people’s plans, demands, suggestions, and proposals] every week. That’s a lot of incoming ideas to deal with. Many people are overwhelmed. Most people figure out ways to kill the vast majority of those ideas. The authors provide some solutions…i.e., how to save your good ideas from being shot down. But, it’s a double-edge sword…you can also use their wisdom to hone your skills at killing good ideas.

490 Dutton Drive - Suite C6 - Waterloo ON N2L 6H7 - phone 519-886-6522 - fax 519-886-8795
Copyright © 2012. W.F.C (Rick) Baker. All Rights Reserved.