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I have just learned about this terrific site Get Rich Slowly Here is a fascinating post about Thirteen Steps to a Better Life — lots of great suggestions for how to be happier.
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I was playing a game with myself to choose 2 steps I like the most, and I chose:
Join a group and help others.
Being around people, feel a part of a community and help others grow, have been a constant source of happiness for me.
What are your top 2? (I know it’s hard to choose 😉 )
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it has been 9 months since my Breakthrough seminar. During the seminar, while we were working on ‘what is our gift’ I felt that I was missing something, and maybe to be accurate, cheating myself.
I was creating what looks ‘good’, not what really felt good. I got to understand that and recognize the feeling during the seminar, and that was great.
Since then, I have been on the path of searching for the perfect combination of my gifts.
My love for nature, art and of helping people.
The reason I am writing about it today is because I feel I am getting closer and closer to the answers. It seems that I get in the mail what I just needed to read, the right people are coming into my life, the activities I am involved at are just the ones that let my passion shine.
I am now at the process of creating a new project with a dear friend, which is all about educating people about our garbage through art.
Yes, you read right- garbage.
It seems that in the last year or so, environmental issues are on my mind. I am much more aware of my garbage, my recycle and how it’s effecting our world.
Understanding the impact of our personal actions, made me realize that I would like to contribute to the overall understanding of those important issues. I am not sure yet how, but I can feel that the way is being created for me, for us.
The opportunity to educate others, help our environment incorporating art into it, will be a great soil for me to strive on. I believe that by giving out from my heart, good things will follow.
If you are feeling that you are missing something, don’t give up ! Stay open to new opportunities, keeping in mind few questions:
What makes you happy?
What feels great?
Can I help ?
I found that these questions have helped me a lot refocusing myself every time I am slipping away from my goals. If it doesn’t feel good – stay out of there, it is probably not the best choice.
I would be happy to help anyone who needs help finding his/her gift, source of happiness, so feel free to write me !

The Little Theater was full with teachers and parents who came to listen to Dr. Carol Dweck. Dressed in a black suite, with a very soft voice, Dr. Dweck shared how you can make a huge different in children’s academic accomplishment by praising them for the PROCESS rather their intelligence.

Her message although simple to absorb, is quite amazing –

By changing the way you are praising your child, you are effecting his ability to become a better student while developing an attitude of growth towards learning.

According to Dr. Dweck, there are 2 basic mindset – A fix mindset and a growth mindset.
The fixed mindset student care more about Looking smart, rather than learning and growing.
The growth mindset student care more about what she is learning rather that how she looks.

Her research shows correlation between a student mindset and their long term academic success:

A fix mindset will tend to choose ‘ easy tasks’ and avoid challenges, to sustain the need of ‘looking smart’ and over time will do poorly in school. A growth mindset will take the time to learn from her own mistakes to become a better student and improve grades.

The big discovery of the research shows a direct relationship between the way a child is being praised and their mindset and preformance. A child that is being praise for his intelligence (e.g : you are so good at that, you are so smart, of course this is easy for you because you are so smart…..) tend to develop a fixed mindset and will not make an effort that will make her look ‘not smart’.
A child that is being praised for the process – meaning, the hard work she puts in and the effort she makes to become better, will develop a growth mindset and will challenge herself to grow all the time.

Although the research is all about academic performance, I can see a direct relationship to parenting and life in general. The way I look at life is that it’s a continues journey of leaning and growing. This is the reason we are here – to learn all the time, and become better human beings and at the same time become professional at our vocation. As a mom, I am telling my kids all the time how smart they are, and according to Dr. Dweck research, I am doing then a disservice. I do not help them develop a growth mindset. The fact that a child is smart and have better abilities than others, does not mean she needs to work less hard. By praising a child for hard work, for trying hard, for making mistakes and learning from them, by making an effort to do the best, we encourage him to become a more confidence person in his ability to learn and grow.

Personally, I know that this has been one of my biggest challenge as a growing child, I was always told that I was smart and I can do it, and thus I got so stressed before tests, that is came to physical pains. I was afraid to let down, to not look as smart and others thought I was. Today, as I am learning more and more, and enjoying every minute of it,I stop to thank myself for all the learning I have done, and all the growth I have made. Stephan Covey said: The more you learn, the more you realized how ignorant you are. The more we learn, the more we realized how much more there is to uncover and to learn. I love this message, it makes ignorance to be a positive thing that keeps you on your toes, and pushes you to learn more.

Praise yourself and your children for the effort they are putting in, and with a lot of love they will become a great curious human being and a great students.

Last month, as I was on my way to a meeting I heard a talk show on KQED radio that was all about raising resilient children. One of the presenters was psychologist Carol Dweck. Studding a lot about ‘Warrior Spirit’ and Warrior attitude to over come issues in my life, I was curious by her work.

When I came back home today, my boys brought a note from school that she will be speaking at the local high school…. I am always amazed to see how I think about something I want to learn about and the universe is helping me in achieving them!

I also went to read the article about Dweck work ” How Not to talk to your kids, The inverse power of praise, written by Po Bronson , Published Feb 12, 2007 http://nymag.com/news/features/27840/

Here are some highlights from the article :

“a new study from the trenches of the New York public-school system—strongly suggests it might be the other way around. Giving kids the label of “smart” does not prevent them from underperforming. It might actually be causing it”…

…”Dweck’s research on overpraised kids strongly suggests that image maintenance becomes their primary concern—they are more competitive and more interested in tearing others down. A raft of very alarming studies illustrate this. “

I am still learning this article and her work, and would share with you more after hearing her lecture.

http://nymag.com/news/features/27840/

To our children, Relli