July 22, 2007

The ‘Both’ Tool

This is both a way of thinking and a tool.

A central question, or struggle, for many people is: Should I look out for and serve my Self or Others? This has generated many very heated debates. Graphically, let’s look at this conflict.

Who to help:

1 Dimension

However, if we change this from a 1 to a 2 dimentional space, here’s what happens:

1 to 2 Dimensions

Since this is both a way of thinking and a tool:
As a way of thinking, it helps when you want to resolve often contentious issues. This presumes your true intention is to unite not split. Those whose intentions are to create and maintain divisions, such as some politicians, many so-called news-reporters, and those who want to destroy our way of life, will have no use for it.

The tool part is simply a graphic way to help us ‘think out loud’. Graphs are sometimes more useful than words, since words allow us to both reveal or hide our thoughts, and focus on things and people and events as if they were totally isolated experiences. Graphs tend to encourage us to make more relationship type decisions. Where do I place the first item on a blank page? And the second item, should it be lower or higher, to the left or right, in bigger or smaller letters etc. Perhaps a different color…

Expanding this a bit further and, hopefully, shedding some light on it, and making it even more useful, we need to look at several things. Not everything we do helps ourselves or others. Sometimes it does nothing, and I’ll address that situation later, but sometimes, in spite of the best of intentions, we actually do harm. To see that graphically, lets extend both of these arrows in the opposite direction.

All 4

By pushing each dimension into the negative range we have a more complete picture to think about. To save space I’ll label the 4 quadrents, QI, QII, QIII, QIV. (Remember the Roman Numerals). The numbering is completely arbitrary.

Here we can place many groups of individuals, some of whom seem hard to understand, especially if we only have 2 places like Good & Bad.

To print this out for taking notes, right click on the graphic, select “View Image”, and when the image comes up in a separate page, Print it.

This is my view only, others may well disagree…

Quad I – Win-Win or Both Win
Diplomats are typically here. Win-win solutions is what their whole life is all about.
Internationally – Tony Blair – creating peace between England and Ireland.
SalesPeople are also here. While we sometimes think of them as self only oriented, the best of salespeople realize that no deal is concluded until BOTH parties are satisfied.

Quad II – Self Wins – Others Lose

There are quite a few folk here.

Bullies, being insecure, need to put others down, in order to feel OK about themselves.

Criminals of most all types, believe, and live, I win, others lose.

These next 3, Narcissists, Sociopaths, and Perverse Abusers or Soul Killers, I’ve known about for a while, but couldn’t figure out just where they differed or overlapped. Doing some reading and using my KnCells tools to reduce the confusion, here’s what I currently think:

Narcissists The narcissist, is not just the center of the universe, he/she IS the universe. So the rest of us simply don’t exist.

Sociopaths – see: “The Sociopath Next Door” by Martha Stout
The Sociopath, also a narcissist, acknowledges we exist, indeed he/she needs us to play the games where he/she will ‘win’ over us. But after winning we no longer count. A recent example is Mike DeFong a now former prosecutor in North Carolina, who cares absolutely nothing about the damage he creates to others, only his own, sometimes imaginary, advancement.

Perverse Abusers – see: “Stalking the Soul” by Marie-France Hirigoyen. The ‘Perverse Abuser’, I call them Soul Killers, also a Sociopath, not only acknowledges that we exist, but is dedicated to make sure we cease to exist. They will not rest until we are destroyed. We see these on the international stage. They are also in our personal lives, but are much harder to see or accept there.

Yet another group, with deadly effect:
Homicide bombers – I win others lose.

Quad III - Self Loses – Others Win
Martyrs – Others win, I lose
- Others win, I lose

Quad IV – Both Lose

Suicides – I lose, others lose what I might have contributed.
Idea Killers – These people will attempt to kill any idea that moves us all forward. They seem to believe that somewhere in this world, somehow, there exists a person who wants to have fun; and it their mission in life is to prevent that from ever happening. They are the sadest of the sad, and it would be only their problem, but most of them are devoted body and soul to making the rest of the world as miserable as themselves.
Suicide bombers – I lose life, others lose life.

Here’s a graphic which shows where I believe these various groups fit; your values may well differ.


Filed under: Individuology — Bob Gorman @ 8:26 pm

July 17, 2007

Left Brain Creativity

Left Brain Creativity and/or Right Brain Editing

This topic is very, very personal. I hope it will be a comfort to others who have the same dynamics.

This is a topic that is rarely, if ever discussed. I always knew, based on what everyone around me said, that I was ‘creative’ in some way, perhaps even hyper-creative, if there is such a thing. My need to create is so pervasive in my life, and I attribute it at least partially to being an appropriate response to severe and inappropriate abuse/neglect.

It shows up in so many ways in my life. When most people run out of money, they think “I need to go get a job”. When I run out of money, I think “I need to go create a business”.

Once when I was living in the Chicago area I saw an ad in the paper, for a collection of books on creativity. The person wanted, I think, $150. for about 35 books on every possible aspect of creativity. Naturally I bought them, and over several years, read them all.

But what I am about to write about was NOT in that collection. It was a small book, and I don’t remember the title or the authors’ name, it was a woman. It was set very strongly in a business setting. If anyone knows the title or author, please contact me. She had a huge impact, in a very positive way on my life, and I’d like to say Thanks…

Even tho I had been accused of being creative by everybody around be, I didn’t fit the typical definition, and so for many years, I felt like a fraud of some kind, till I read her book.

Most of us when we hear the term creativity, think of what I now call right-brain creativity. The painter starts with a blank canvas and draws a picture. The writer starts with a blank piece of paper and creates a novel. The musician, and I’m guessing here, starts with blank music paper. But while I wanted to do that, at least the writer part, I couldn’t!

She introduced the notion of Re-Arrangement as a form of creativity. Moving the existing parts around to create a new pattern! Wow! It clicked with me immediately. In business, several times I had been hired to take over a failing department, turn it around, and make it successful. A ground rule was always, I could NOT fire everyone and hire a whole new staff, I had to do it with the existing staff! I did it, I did it very well, and more importantly, I loved it! Reflecting back, I was Re-Arranging!

Looking more broadly at my whole life, I wanted since my youth to create, there’s that word again, a better system of psychology. A better way of thinking about people that would help eliminate, or significantly reduce, personal violence. I wanted both to provide recovery for those who had already been severely broken and a way to prevent future generations of individuals from becoming broken.

Over the last 45+ years I have studied over 140 ‘systems’ of psychology. Some, I read a few articles or books, many I took direct trainings, workshops, seminars etc. Each of them had some good ‘nuggets’ of truth or help. Where, in my opinion, they mostly went astray is that they tried to generalize their excellent solution of a specific problem into a generic solution for all human problems.

So now at 65+ I am left with a few hundred jigsaw puzzle pieces, to assemble into a picture, but I don’t have that picture! I must create it. And how I do that is a massive Re-arrangement of all those nuggets!

Right Brain Editing
Another thing I haven’t read much about, even tho I’ve been reading “The Writer” magazine for over 50 years, is what I call “Right Brain Editing”.
When I start creating an article, book, workshop etc., I start with a lot of small pieces, very often not organized well at all. Then occasionally, more often now that I recognize it as a solid process, I get into a mode, a frame of mind, where I don’t touch any of the pieces or chunks, but simply re-arrange the big chunks. This chunk needs to come before that chunk… This has worked well for me, and I hope it will be helpful to others as well.

Recently, I was totally stymied with a whole bucket full of my ideas and no clear way forward. What finally worked was this: I made, totally for myself, a PowerPoint presentation of all my ideas. This forced me to concentrate on my main ideas, keeping the What’s, but dropping How’s, and it forced me to create some organization or sequence! In other words, I had to Re-Arrange the chunks!

Filed under: Individuology — Bob Gorman @ 8:51 pm

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