Healthy Power
Healthy Power
Pathways to Success in Work, Love and Life
Perfect Bound Softcover
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At its deepest essence, this book is about the interplay of light and shadow in constant motion throughout our lives. Like the ebb and flow of oceanic tides, rising and falling in concert with the moon, we move constantly back-and-forth between admirable and ignoble behavior. We are not fixed, and we’re never perfect. No one is exempt, thus any sense of permanence is merely an illusion. Each of us is born with an animalistic nature that is our ancient heritage and has served our species well through the millennia for basic survival. Since it appears that we are the only creatures endowed with higher consciousness, we are uniquely capable of contemplating our existence, thus we have evolved to the point that we can make choices above and beyond our mere survival. Moreover, through self-mastery, evolution has presented us opportunity to go beyond the reactivity that characterizes most other living things.

Our species governs and reigns supreme over the planet with advanced reasoning and execution skills combined with skills in emotion management and impulse regulation. However, the nature of our power depends not primarily upon this superior raw potential. Ultimately, our power is determined by the operating system we apply in self-governance, and that is the focus of this book. Moreover, it provides a framework for understanding power within eight dimensions in an attempt to illuminate those key forks in the road where choices are made in our pursuit of power, both healthy and destructive. Healthy power emerges from the development of a person’s core strengths and is manifested in effective personal leadership. This, in turn, generates positive, values-driven results through our empowering influence upon others and systems. Welcome to your journey toward self-empowerment!

“A stellar job, Craig: a well written, well organized and eminently readable book. I recommend it enthusiastically.”

—Wayne Dyer

Healthy Power in leadership comes from the eight root psychological principles working together in harmonious balance so that the whole they create is greater than the sum of its parts. They then combine and resonate like the finely tuned instruments of an orchestra to produce a powerful and beautiful symphony. Accordingly, as the conductors leading any such concerted effort, we manifest those principles most effectively by:

1) Taking complete Personal Responsibility for every choice, decision, and action that we undertake, and then holding others accountable fairly in like fashion.

…The voice of Personal Responsibility

“I take complete responsibility for my choices and the consequences of my actions, neither making excuses nor blaming others. Therefore, I am accountable to myself and others. I become more powerful each time I take responsibility, thus I hold others accountable appropriately with the acknowledgment that my doing so can serve to empower them also.”

2) Developing and expressing our Optimistic Expectations with unwavering confidence and faith that we and our families or other teams will ultimately prevail.

…The voice of Optimistic Expectations

“I build and maintain positive expectations for the future while bringing a positive spirit and outlook to the present moment in all that I do. I do these things knowing that I am likely to fulfill my own expectations, and because I understand how positive energy and faith tend to be contagiously helpful and uplifting, both for me and those around me.”

3) Building Win-Win Relationships with everyone as much as possible in an atmosphere of abundance and good spirited competition, comparing ourselves primarily with ourselves using internally identified and defined benchmarks.

…The voice of Win-Win Relationships

“I am neither greater than nor less than any other human being, and we are interdependent with each other and our planet. Therefore, I always strive to develop Win-Win Relationships knowing that any great relationship is mutually empowering and that life is enhanced and made more rewarding through healthy personal/social connections.”

4) Creating a lifestyle of Energizing Joy in which we, our loved ones, and colleagues experience intrinsic motivation, an internal locus of control, and freedom from self-serving distractions with any related over-dependency—staying off the hedonic treadmill.

…The voice of Energizing Joy

“I seek joy and fulfillment in all that I do, knowing that it comes from the heart and stems from unconditional love. While I enjoy healthy pleasures, I do so in moderation in order to avoid over-dependency and addiction. When I become energized in joyful pursuits, I am enlivened through feelings of gratitude, contentment, and peace.”

5) Making only Reality-Based Choices with careful and thorough information gathering, fact-based analyses, and team planning so that decisions foster confident action and minimize the need for any rework or damage control later.

…The voice of Reality-Based Choices

“I acknowledge truth as the foundation of Healthy Power, thus I strive to use facts, accurate data, and other credible input to form my opinions and make key decisions. To the greatest extent possible, I speak the truth and strive to empower others with reliable information. I have biases, so I confer with others when necessary to validate my thinking.”

6) Initiating and mobilizing intensively Focused Action through effective management of all 3 facets—Selection, Concentration, and Perspective—in order to maximize alignment of prioritized effort and to create sufficient impact toward breakthrough successes as an individual or group.

…The voice of Focused Action

“I make constructive use of focus in all three facets: Selection—the object of my attention, Concentration—how I maintain attention, and Perspective—the lens through which I view things. Knowing that my focus tends to expand, I use focus constructively for my inner world, thoughts and emotions, and my outer world, the universe in which I live.”

7) Demonstrating Unrelenting Courage by taking decisive, effective action, even amidst fears, doubts, or other discomfort, and then expecting and supporting the same in others.

…The voice of Unrelenting Courage

“I acknowledge my need to take effective action, even in the presence of fear, discomfort, and other negative feelings, so I can maximize my life experiences and reach my greatest potential. While always exercising good judgment before taking risk, I welcome challenges and adventures with a courageous spirit of confidence and commitment in order to live and die with no regret.”

8) Envisioning a Lifelong Purpose for ourselves and for any organization serving others with which we become affiliated through our passionate, inspired, and altruistic behavior, trusting that both the journey and the outcomes will be tangibly rewarding and emotionally fulfilling for everyone touched by our leadership legacy.

…The voice of Lifelong Purpose

“I acknowledge my most important developmental milestone: making the shift from myself toward others to find a purpose greater than myself. I can then accept my mortality in a manner that makes life a joyful pursuit. I strive to be altruistic, to leave a positive legacy, and to die with grace and dignity—at peace for having attained my personal greatness.”

The combined effect of the Healthy Power described above fosters a seemingly effortless ability to create positive, values-driven results through people within our sphere of influence. Such results flow from loyal, committed, and enthusiastically engaged supporters—people providing the followership that empowers our leadership in a healthy quid pro quo paradigm. As a key part of such, the most effective leaders nimbly play alternating roles: at times the teacher, at other times the student; at times the speaker, at other times the listener; at times the service-oriented leader, at other times the appropriately enabling follower.
Especially in the workplace, we do well to commit ourselves to gaining the confident, undying trust of others by being both professionally competent and of fine character, for both are necessary but insufficient conditions for gaining trust. And when people trust us unflinchingly as the result of experiencing both our competence and character, they will then entrust us with their most precious assets, tangibly and intangibly, thereby empowering us to influence even greater and more positive changes in their lives.

Craig N. Piso, PhD is president of Piso and Associates, LLC, an organizational development consulting firm in northeastern Pennsylvania. A licensed psychologist with thirty-three years experience, he has worked in family systems clinical practice, corporate managed behavioral health, and organizational consulting. He and his wife, Theresa, reside in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.

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