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October 30, 2017

Over-functioning is Under-productive

“Never do for another that which they need to do for themselves.”
(Abraham Lincoln)


Whenever we use threats to control anyone’s behavior, we ruin any chance of getting what we actually want most. See, we don’t want our employees to improve because we threatened to fire them, we don’t want our spouse to do the dishes because we threatened to withhold sex, and we don’t want our kids to do their homework because we threatened to punish them.


What we really want is for these people in our lives to be SELF-motivated, not threat-motivated. It follows, therefore, that whenever we threaten them, their own self-motivation becomes impossible.


So, what are we supposed to do instead?


For a little while, nothing.  If we’re constantly thinking about how to motivate others, then we’re working way too hard on other people’s problems, and not enough on our own. So first, concentrate on making your own improvement, washing your dishes, and doing your homework. All the while, resist the urge to even think about what these f0lks are, or aren’t doing.


Try that for a week, if you can, and see what happens. You may feel irresponsible, or resentful, or downright enraged. These are all symptoms of over-functioning. And it never fails…the more we over-function for others, the less they do for themselves.


Peace begins with pause,



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