News from Jude Bijou and Attitude Reconstruction™      


Joy, Love, and Peace in 2016

Attitiude Reconstruction  


March 2016                                               "Them" vs "Us"


Jude Bijou
Jude Bijou MA MFT is a respected psychotherapist, professional educator, and workshop leader. Her multi award- winning book is a practical and spiritual handbook to help you create the life you desire.  
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I will also be giving a full two-day workshop on Attitude Reconstruction in beautiful Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada on October 22 - 23 2016. It's called Attitude Reconstruction: Build Joy, Love, and Peace. Sign up. It's a crazy conversion rate from US to Canadian dollars currently.  Come join me!      
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Kind words from readers:

I loved your newsletter this morning.  Along with this subject is the so important aspect of listening which you mentioned.  It all helps us to be happier, more content and understanding people.  After all, we are human but there is always room for learning and bettering (is that a word?) ourselves!
Apologizing is a most important subject. When I first married my husband, I remember his grandparents said they never went to bed angry and I have always followed that advice!  Kind of like you mentioned, not holding on to it.  Work it out, let it go .. . Be free, be happy. . .life is too short not to do that.

An email from someone who came across my website...

I just wanted to send you a quick note of thanks. I just took one of your Attitude Reconstruction quizzes and found it simple but powerful!
I appreciate your work!

Check out the helpful content on the Attitude Reconstruction Website


          "Norman won't collaborate."

     "That wasn't very nurturing of you."

"Sometimes I think the collaborative process would work better without you."

This picture demonstrates how we each can hold a different perspective. We must integrate all positions in order to have true collaboration.

Do you see an old or young woman?

The following three pie charts yield some fascinating data!


Consider purchasing
Keys to a Good Life, a book that includes a collection of articles, including one by yours truly on how to deal with anxiety!

It is now available for purchase through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, etc. and is the perfect way to find wisdom to unlock your power within.

Dearest Friends,

I'm pleased to report that the 'Special Attitude Reconstruction' two day workshop in Santa Barbara was an overwhelming success. Participants were amazed at how much information was covered but more importantly, how much they experienced the concepts that were presented. And of course, the biggest take-away was realizing how we're all in the same boat, with the same issues. And that we're all seeking tools to make our voyage on the ocean of life filled with more joy, love, and peace.

This month I thought I'd explore the merits of collaboration and lay out a nifty way to resolve conflict so we can experience the heartfelt benefits of working together. But first...

Just now I heard President Obama speak to the heart of the month's theme at a press conference with newly elected Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada. President Obama said that "when working to find a solution, each side wants 100% but will get 60%. Then they will complain about the deal." We're just so predictable!

Along these lines, Obama had a broad perspective about the current state of politics in the USA currently. (These aren't direct quotes, but the gist of the message.) He said when one party holds the view that cooperation / compromise is a betrayal, that righteous views are a badge of courage, and that "them" vs "us" thinking is the norm and "them" is the root of the problem, we create an environment where someone like Donald Trump can survive.

According to Attitude Reconstruction this exactly describes the attitudes people who have an ANGER constitution. And this is the dynamic we will encounter as we attempt to cooperate and collaborate for the benefit of the world and our own peace of mind.

Our survival depends on keeping in touch with our unity and remembering we are all the same. It's the recipe for LOVE to thrive.

Interesting Articles

These three articles caught my attention this month.

       First, a study was recently published that showed that 40 year old subjects who were more physically fit during the 20 years the study ran, had less brain shrinkage at age 60 compared to the control group. They were less likely to develop Alzheimer's disease, diabetes, dementia, and cardiovascular disease. Another reason to get moving!

       Second, here's an article that demonstrates that it is detrimental to a child's self-worth when their parents hide their emotions or pretend to be excited when playing with their child! The result is that parents hurt their own level of emotional well-being as well as weaken the level of closeness they and their children feel.

       Third, good news for chocolate lovers. A study recently came out that suggests that people who eat chocolate at least once a week see their memory and abstract thinking improve. In addition to that benefit, other research has shown that consuming chocolate reduces the risk of stroke, is good for your heart, and helps protect your skin from the sun. According to Merrill Elias, one of the researchers of the aforementioned study, "I think what we can say for now is that you can eat
small amounts of chocolate without guilt if you don't substitute chocolate for a normal balanced healthy diet."

Collaboration Videos

Here are a couple of illustrations of collaboration and cooperation. The first is an ad produced by Coke, showing insects working together.

Next, is an example of dancer's precision

And last is some great clips from Everyone Loves Raymond, guaranteed to bring a smile to your face and brighten your day.  

Just like Colorado aspens or giant California redwoods need each other for support and to survive, so do people.

Science now substantiates what we intuitively know: It feels good to be part of a team effort. Whether it's working on a group project for school, being part of a team that undertakes a business deal, or participating in a team sport. When you have a shared goal you can go to greater heights of creativity and success. According to a recent article, studies "found that the endorphin response is far greater when working in teams than it is for the same accomplishment when working solo." The benefits of camaraderie and collaboration are undeniable.
Working alone and being adversarial leads to feelings of isolation and alienation. Working together to reach a common goal fosters joy, love, and peace. Love because you feel that connection as you work together and collaborate. Joy because each member is contributing his or her best to the joint project. And peace because there is strength in numbers when you are part of a community.

Nowhere is this more obvious than in a family that has each others' back. Each can go out in the world knowing the security that exists back home. Each person knows they are equally valued. They collectively embody the lovely truth "Your viewpoints and needs are as important as mine," and as a result, each feels worthy and empowered to be their best selves.

The opposite of collaboration is competition. It's based on who can exert the most power and win. But the fruits of victory by over-running others are often bitter sweet. It does nothing for the heart or for the good of the whole.

Hence, our political situation today.

In order to reap the rewards of collaboration, we need to have a strategy to resolve differences in a way that honors all involved. That's an area where Attitude Reconstruction shines.

A Simple Way to Resolve Conflict

Small details or big issues, no matter! Reconciling differences can happen with commitment to teamwork and by abiding by the four communication rules of "I"s, specifics, kindness, and listening. This means curtailing the "you"s, overgeneralities, negativity, and not listening.

Regardless of the conflict, the goal is to create solutions that are workable for everyone and connect, not separate. In order to accomplish this it's vital to hear and understand each person's position. Only then is it possible to work together to find a mutually satisfying outcome. (See image to the left that clearly illustrates how we can each have a different perspective.)

Depending on the complexity of the issue and the number of people involved, the process can take from just a few minutes to several lengthy sessions. Don't be deterred by the time it takes to thoroughly and collaboratively resolve an issue. In the long run, your time investment will pay off, and you will enjoy the connection and feelings of mutual respect.

Two steps are all you need to resolve any difference in a way that honors all concerned. If you do the first step well, the second will be easy -- even fun. You start by listing the specific topics you want to discuss, picking one, and promising to stick to only talking about that one issue. Agree to the amount of time each person is allotted to speak for at a given time. Usually a minute or two is enough because you continually alternate talking and listening. (A kitchen timer is very helpful.)      

The Two Steps to Resolve Any Difference

1.    Alternate exchanging views about the specific issue until all feel heard and understood.
2.    Together, brainstorm ideas to find a workable solution that honors all parties.       

Step One: Alternate exchanging views about a specific issue until all feel heard and understood.

Begin by one person saying everything he or she needs to say about that topic. You're not talking solution in Step One. Say everything you need to say about why you believe or feel what you do about the issue now. (Once you go to Step Two, you will be talking about what you need or want.)

This can be a bit of a time-consuming process. It's a challenge to articulate thoughts and feelings, because they need to be truly understood by the other(s). Keep alternating until no one has anything more to say. That might mean ten rounds! Although you don't have to agree when you listen, you must recognize that all positions are equally valid. If communication violations occur, get out your matador cape. Gently remind the person you're communicating with them and to please speak about himself or herself so you can truly understand their position.

As you talk and listen, new subjects may emerge. Note them in writing so they can be discussed at a later time, but resist the urge to throw new issues on the table and complicate matters unless you both consider the shift helpful. When each person feels his or her position on the chosen topic is understood by the other, step one is done.

Step Two: Together, brainstorm ideas to find a workable solution that honors all parties.

Integration, compromise, cooperation, and ultimately collaboration are what I'm suggesting. You now need to integrate all points of view in Step Two in order to find an acceptable and workable agreement. (Step Two is not: the time to revert to espousing your grievances; challenging others; proclaiming who's right and wrong; or using threats and intimidation. It's not about rehashing your opinion of what happened in the past or interpreting the other person's behavior.) This time for creative dialogue is about finding win-win solutions that feel right to all; now and for the future.

What a good agreement looks like? It should combine the ideas of everyone concerned. It does not mean "your way" or "my way," but a way we can both agree on. Using the goal of connection as a guide, ask yourself these questions:
*    How can we find a middle ground between our
*    What is a workable solution?
*    Is the position I am proposing, or agreeing to, coming
         from selfishness or love?

If there are bumps in the road to finding a solution, try adding "trading time" to Step Two. If everyone contributes to a brainstorming session, you'll be surprised by how many alternatives you come up with. Collect every idea and extract the merits and liabilities of each. After listening to all suggestions, collaborate to find the best blend of positions. Remain open, stay specific, build on each others suggestions, and trade time when the discussion gets lopsided. Break big problems down into manageable pieces. Keep talking, and keep listening.

Clamming up or becoming the loud bully isn't going to win you any merit points nor encourage others to find a happy solution. Focus on putting the "we" first and personal desires second. Sometimes downplaying your own wants and needs is necessary for the good of the whole. If you normally give in, realize your needs are important and consult your intuition before acquiescing to another person's suggestion. Persist until you arrive at a win-win solution. Workable solutions that honor everyone are possible. If you can't find one, shelve the topic temporarily and set a specific time to resume the discussion, or bring in a neutral third party.

The Afterglow

Once everyone's come to an agreement, it is imperative you honestly accept it, and not back out whenever the going gets tough. Be careful not to consent to a solution that doesn't feel right, or you'll definitely experience a backlash. If the solution feels correct, you'll be able to let go of what you gave and deal with your emotions about not getting things your way.

Avoid keeping score or bringing up your concessions later, either out loud or to yourself. Avoid sarcasm, as it's an insincere attempt at humor. These tactics indicate you haven't truly handled your anger about your differences nor have you embraced the solution.

Working together towards agreement allows all to enjoy the benefits of collaborating. Every time you reached a win-win you'll feel the connection and satisfaction for your efforts.

Hey Jude! 

I'll be back next month. The newsletter is already so long. Keep your questions coming!  
Thanks for reading this newsletter. If you have any feedback, suggestions about a newsletter theme, or general comments, I enjoy hearing from you, so write me at: