question of the week

How Do You React When a Learning Experience Clarifies How Far You Still Have To Go

I spent the last four days in a fiction writing workshop. If I take a narrow perspective, I “failed” with my writing. (It was a fantasy caper workshop with two genres: second-world fantasy and caper.) My failure? I did not include nearly enough setting in my writing. That’s where the writer explains where we are—and …

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How Do You Manage to Notice When You Need Updates or Upgrades?

Today is a maintenance day at Chez Rothman. Our heating system has an error code, and we’re upgrading our wifi. So people are stomping around—and I’m very happy about that. What we’re doing today is “extra” maintenance—updating and upgrading. We do normal maintenance all the time. The cleaning people make our house sparkle once a …

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Can You Resolve to Rethink About How You Think About Change?

Many of my colleagues are busy creating resolutions, in preparation for the new year. They think those resolutions will help them create better lives. Maybe, although I’ve never succeeded with resolutions. Instead of resolutions, I’ve suggested before that we create watchwords for ourselves. Those watchwords create some guidance for our actions. But this year, I …

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How Can You Know You’re Good Enough to Take That First Step?

Many of my colleagues are in the midst of change. Some people are looking for new jobs. Some writers are looking for places that will buy their stories. Others are considering consulting. All these people have something in common—they want to take that first step. Except, many of them stop before they do. Instead of …

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How Can You Incorporate Adaptability Into Your Leadership?

Many of us think of leaders as people with titles, bestowed leadership. In my experience, we all have the possibility to exercise our leadership—and part of that is seeing that we have alternatives we can consider. So adaptable leadership means we need to generate options, which means we need to see the reality of our …

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Do You Plan to Vote for the Short or the Long Term?

The US is voting next week, for what we call the “midterms.” We don’t change the entire government every four years—we stagger terms for each representative, senator, and governor. Much of the time, the voters want change. That means the President’s party tends to lose seats in the midterms. I also want change. But I’m …

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How Do You Know It’s Time for You to Confront a Bully?

The rapper formerly known as Kanye West conducted an anti-Semitic tirade a couple of weeks ago. (You can find it if you want to see it.) In his tirade, he bullied Jews. He thought he was untouchable. His licensing deals, his promoters, all of his business people—he thought his business collaborators would leave him alone …

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What Would Have to Be True for That Outcome to Occur?

Have you ever had a long-term disagreement with someone else? I’m going to discuss something small: when to take the garbage out for garbage day. (Talk about a first-world problem!) Our garbage day is Wednesday and nothing about our pickup is predictable. The current garbage company picks up the recycling and the actual garbage at …

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