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Name of author Rick Baker, P.Eng.

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The cornerstone of our personality, our mental attitude, shows up as the general flavour of our thoughts.

by Rick Baker
On Jun 24, 2017

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

We can choose from 3 mental-attitude flavours: Positivity, Negativity, & Indifference.

Positivity is the best flavour...a rich flavour in many ways.

Negativity can be hard to swallow...but, at least, it gives you something to argue against.

Indifference - so bland it's not worth writing about.




I developed a serious interest in other people ... in less than 6 decades.

by Rick Baker
On Jun 18, 2017

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

From a very early age, I noticed people making mistakes. I didn't just notice it. Their mistakes scraped in my ears, seared my eyes and caused me all sorts of other discomfort, anxiety and annoyance. 

But, in less than 6 decades I managed to get beyond the constant barrage of other people's errors...and, when all the dust cleared, I found myself truly interested in other people.

Better to climb mountains in your mind than on the back of your donkey-ego.

by Rick Baker
On Jun 8, 2017

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

May your molehills remain molehills and may your ego choose molehills over mountain climbing.

Refuse to allow your ego to join the mule trains climbing those mountains!


Attitude: Creating Positive Attitude | Beyond Business | Humour | Personalities @ Work | Thought Tweets

Your brand starts with your character and the culture you breed: your brand stalls or flourishes there.

by Rick Baker
On Jun 7, 2017

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

A brand isn't a cute visual.

A brand isn't a catchy logo or a slick tag line.

A brand cannot pretty up a flawed character or a troubling culture.

When testing new branding, take a step back and look at your personal character and your business culture. Do they pass the litmus test? Do they render an investment in 'branding' worthwhile? Or, do they neuter your branding expenditures?


Master Rules | Personalities @ Work | Thought Tweets | Values: Personal Values

Being Right, Being Wrong, & other ways to Annoy People

by Rick Baker
On May 23, 2017

We can annoy other people so many ways...from being 100% right to being 100% wrong and pretty much everything in between.

It's relatively easy to understand why we annoy people when we are wrong. When we say and do wrong things people are annoyed because we let them down and we waste their time, etc.

It's relatively easy to understand why we annoy people when we stick to middle ground. People don't like indecision and they don't like wishy-washyness. People are impatient and they want answers.

And, I suppose for some folks it's easy to understand why we annoy people when we provide accurate answers, technically-right advice, and clear perceptions. Nobody likes a wise guy. Nobody likes a know-it-all. And sometimes all it takes is a right idea or an accurate piece of advice to trigger other people's self-defence mechanisms.

"Productive Communication": what an art form -

  • knowing when to bite your tongue just before it expresses something quite right but nonetheless doomed to be poorly received 
  • knowing when to bite your tongue just before it expresses something incorrect or stupid or otherwise wrong 
  • knowing when and how to take the time to formulate opinions that will inject Value into situations...helping others...without annoying them

Self-monitoring & self-control, the gifts that create a pleasing personality, a personality that -

  • does not annoy
  • inspires people
  • influences action
Inspire People - Influence Action - Generate Success
When you annoy people you don't make money...[unless you happen to be a sitcom actor or a Don Rickles clone]


Communication: Improving Communication | Influencing | Personalities @ Work

Criticism, Adrenalin Spikes & Improving Relationships

by Rick Baker
On May 15, 2017

Some people naturally repulse criticism. These people may show outward signs of their repulsion. These people may not show outward signs, or their repulsion may hide so well it would take a professional observer to notice it. Regardless, internally, these people churn in reaction to criticism. For these people - even small, innocuous pieces of feedback can trigger intense internal reactions, floods of adrenalin – adrenalin spikes.

  1. Do you know people who show vehement reaction to tiny criticisms…people who have zero tolerance for incoming criticism?
  2. Do you know people who, at first, show no outward reaction to criticism then, later, strike excessive reactionary blows against the person who delivered the criticism?
  3. Do you know people who have the habit of claiming they are the victim of undue criticism?
  4. Do you know people who repulse criticism yet deliver it to others with gusto and righteousness?

These are four common reactions to criticism.

I have personally exhibited at least three of these four reactions to criticism…and, probably, many people would think I’m selling myself short by not admitting to all four.


Why would I have had such reactions to criticism?

Not having much knowledge of physiology or biology and only dabbling experience with psychology I answer that question this way:

  • When people criticized me, I experienced adrenalin spikes [or was that cortisol?]. I felt strong, churning, tightening sensations in the gut…quickly followed by combinations of anxiety and anger, often intense anger...then excessive negative thoughts and behaviour.
  • This reaction must have started when I was a very young child. I have no memory of reacting any other way to criticism [until the last decade, that is].
  • Perhaps, my criticism-repulsion was are due to genetics? Perhaps, my childhood environment? Perhaps, my early experiences with authority figures? I expect it was some combination of these things.

Here’s a curious thing. When you experience criticism-repulsion as a child you can be quite oblivious to other people. And, this can cause challenges…a large variety of interpersonal challenges. Left unattended, these interpersonal challenges can last a lifetime.

Here’s some good news. It is possible to gain self-understanding and create strategies to overcome the interpersonal challenges. The starting point, or at least one starting point, is recognition of the physiological changes that signal less-than-ideal reactions to criticism. People, perhaps most people, can alter their bad habits [including adrenalin spikes] if they choose to make the changes and do the work required.


PS: Perhaps, the people who experience the criticism-repulsion I have described are most capable of identifying it in other people? ... and helping others?  

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