The magnet

Yesterday morning I ran a workshop called Making It Magnetic. I’ve been a participant in the workshop before, but have never been the presenter. Making It Magnetic is a board game and dialogue that ideally should be done in an hour and a half. I had 15 minutes. Ha! Out went the paint by numbers script and in came me speeding through the pretext of running a game and getting across what I think is the most important aspect of growing membership and involvement on the county or committee level: Positivity.

The negative is so easy to find and hold onto. Bad situations or experiences may make us feel frustrated, unwanted, angry or depressed, but for some reason they are also familiar and comfortable. It is easier to believe the bad things about ourselves, our abilities, the people who surround us, and the world in which we live than the good. We hope for the positive but cling to the negative. We all do it.

By contrast, that thing we are all craving, positivity, seems fleeting. When we get it the joy fills us far too briefly before something creeps in and shuts off the tap. We may want to have good in our daily lives and in our souls, but for some reason it is the bad many of us feed off of.

When you are in a leadership role, your primary responsibility is to spread positivity. Tell people you are happy to see them, thankful for the work they do. Give them responsibility and respect when they take on a task and succeed. Be a resource when they stumble. Membership will grown in your organization and retention numbers will rise.

Prepare for a jump:

I live by one rule: to spread a culture of appreciation. I tell my friends that I love them, that I respect and am awed by them. It’s not a constant thing, but a small note or a word at random moments brightens life. Think how wonderful it would be to find a little note mixed in with your junk mail and phone bills. A note that says you are appreciated. How good would that feel? If the thought makes you smile, why wouldn’t it make someone else too? Thank those who are important to you for being the person they are everyday – no make-up on, pretense, no gift wrapping or bows involved.

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