I May Be Past My Peak But I’m Not Over the Hill

There are many benefits and risks of extreme sports. When are you too old to do them?

Don't Type at Me Like That! Email and Emotions

People will remember the emotional tone of an email more vividly and longer than the content. Consider the tone of your email before sending it.

That Was Horrible! What Makes Feedback Work... or Not?

We are all on learning journeys. At work, we are learning new professional skills. In our communities we are learning to make difference, be a good friend, neighbor, or weekend athlete. At home, we are learning how to be a better child, spouse, partner, or parent. Without effective feedback, it becomes impossible to get a realistic perspective on how we are doing.

I Don't Feel Your Pain: Overcoming Roadblocks to Empathy

Empathy is a vital relationship skill and a predictor of success at both home at work. Learn to overcome some of the potential roadblocks to empathy.

The Empire State Building Shooting: Threatening Behavior At Work

The termination or resentful resignation of an employee can be a triggering event that propels a person further down a path toward violence. Once the individual has left, the organization has no clue what other triggering life events may be happening that could escalate the person’s potential for violence. What can an organization do to protect itself?

The Ari Gold Syndrome: Can Smartphones Make You Stupid?

Do you have trouble going "off the grid" to the point that you sometimes damage your relationships? Do you know someone who has this problem?

Did Intolerance Fuel the Tucson Shooting?

Two days after the horrific act of violence in Tucson, many are speculating about the impact of "political hate talk" on people who may be "unhinged." No matter how bizarre one's belief is, one can do an internet search, and find like-minded people with the same belief...Loughner did. 

Communicating with People with Mental Illness: The Public's Guide

Popular media fuel stereotypes about mental illness and dangerousness, because that is how they generally are portrayed on the screen. Our fear of mentally ill people also stems from our own inability to communicate with them and our lack of knowledge about mental illness. Learn how to better communicate with people who may have a mental illness.

I Love My Boss: Office Romances

Many people fall in love with their bosses and co-workers. So what do you do if this happens and both of you want to work at the same organization?

The Times Square Car Bomb Attempt: Balancing Paranoia and Vigilance to Stay Safe

How do we, as good citizens, help keep one another safe, as did the street vendors in Times Square, without becoming hyper-vigilant and paranoid? We need to balance our sense of denial that "this can't happen to me," with being mindfully vigilant. How do we do this when the face of the enemy is almost impossible to recognize? It could be a car, a plane, or a friendly looking person with a bomb strapped to him or her.

Put that iPhone down. I’m talking to you!

Blackberries, iPods, computers, and other techologies save us time and keep us connected, but they can become ADDs (Attention Distraction Devices) distracting us from having good conversations. 

Interactive Presentations: Avoiding the Audience “Dead Zone”

Many great speakers have experienced the audience "dead zone." Facilitating large group interaction calls for a very different skill set than giving a speech or meeting with a small group. It requires reading the group, scanning the non-verbals of the participants, and creating a safe environment for interaction.

The Pentagon Shooting: They Don’t “Just Snap”

"He just snapped." "He went off the deep end." These are terms commonly used by family, friends, neighbors, and TV pundits who describe people like John Bedell, the person who shot two police officers, at the Pentagon on March 4. Do people really "snap?"

Connecting the Dots: Information Sharing to Prevent Violence

Connecting the dots with effective information sharing is the cornerstone of threat assessment and violence prevention. It hasn't been working too well.

Adrenaline Rushes: Can They Help Us Deal with a Real Crisis?

Is it possible to train yourself for crises and stressful events the way law enforcement and the military do? Understanding and harnessing the impact of adrenaline can help.

Managing Conflicts With Email: Why It's So Tempting.

It may seem easier to deal with conflicts with email, because you don't have to see the recipient's angry facial expressions or hear their seething voice tone, but we miss a lot of information about what the other person is feeling and experiencing.

Feedback Is Your Safety Valve: Let It Flow

In the late 1970's, research by the National Trasportation and Safety Board identified the human error aspects of the majority of air crashes as failures of interpersonal communications, decision-making, and leadership. Since then the airline industry has implemented "Crew Resource Management" training programs to address this issue and change the cockpit culture and communication patterns so feedback flows effectively. While lack of feedback will most likely not lead to death at your workplace, it could lead to the loss of a valuable employee or customer, or result in errors or reduced productivity.

Preventing Campus Attacks: University Threat Assessment Teams

In the wake of recent violent attacks on university campuses, schools have added emergency communication systems and critical response plans. These are vital for dealing with a crisis once it has occurred, but resources for preventing an attack and managing the fear of violence are even more important. Many schools have not taken this important step. The ability to identify, assess, and mangage threats is essential.