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Personal Development

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PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT – EXAM
1. What are the four foundations of using your time more efficiently on a daily basis? a. Personal “TO-DO” list b. Priorities c. Personal Peak and Trough times d. Personal controllable times

2. What is time management? Time management is the way we arrange, organize and schedule our time for the purpose of doing things more effectively, professionally and personally. It is about doing things in the right way at the right time for the right reason. 3. What is the difference between efficiency and effectiveness? Efficiency means doing something well within the time which is allocated to it. But, no matter how efficient we are, if we are not taking the right actions toward your goals, we are ineffective. Effectiveness means doing just those things that move us closer to our goals and objectives. The main difference between those two terms is that effectiveness is more about organization and setting priorities, and efficiency is more about execution. On the way to reaching our goals we have to be effective and efficient, in other words use time well and productively. That means that we must pull away from the chaos and think through exactly which steps are most likely to take us from where we are now to where we want to be. By accomplishing those steps, we are effective as we move ourselves closer to our goals and dreams. Within any step, of course, it is important to be efficient.

4. What is stress? Stress is our body’s way of responding to any kind of demand. It can be caused by both good and bad experiences. When people feel stressed by something going on around them, their bodies react by releasing chemicals into the blood. These chemicals give people more energy and strength, which can be a good thing if their stress is caused by physical danger. But this can also be a bad thing, if their stress is in response to something emotional and there is no outlet for this extra energy and strength which happens very often these days, and actually, this is description of what it is called stress in everyday life.

5. What causes stress? Many different things can cause stress — from physical (such as fear of something dangerous) to emotional (such as worry over family or job.) Identifying what may be causing stress is often the first step in learning how to better deal with it. Some of the most common sources of stress are:

Survival Stress or so called “fight or flight” – This is a common response to danger in all people and

animals. When people are afraid that someone or something may physically hurt them, human body naturally responds with a burst of energy so that it will be better able to survive the dangerous situation (fight) or escape it all together (flight). This is survival stress.

Internal Stress – worrying about things we can do nothing about or worrying for no reason at all? This is internal stress and it is one of the most important kinds of stress to understand and manage. Internal

Sanja Mušec

PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT – EXAM
stress is when people make themselves stressed. This often happens when we worry about things we can’t control or put ourselves in situations we know will cause us stress. Some people become addicted to the kind of hurried, tense, lifestyle that results from being under stress. They even look for stressful situations and feel stress about things that aren’t stressful.

Environmental Stress – This is a response to things around us that cause stress, such as noise, crowding, and pressure from work or family. Identifying these environmental stresses and learning to avoid them or deal with them will help lower stress level. Fatigue and Overwork – This kind of stress builds up over a long time and can take a hard toll on your

body. It can be caused by working too much or too hard at job(s), school, or home. It can also be caused by not knowing how to manage time well or how to take time out for rest and relaxation. This can be one of the hardest kinds of stress to avoid because many people feel this is out of their control.

6. What shapes your thoughts and feelings the most? Feelings, thoughts, and beliefs define our internal environment that impacts our health. With or without a directly measurable influence on our physical body, the ways in which we feel, think, and believe help shape our quality of life. Beliefs define each person’s perceived strengths and weaknesses. Our beliefs about what we can and cannot do define what we think and feel. These mental constructs are very important to explore when we are dealing with serious diseases, for instance. How do we define our strengths and weaknesses? Are we defining our strengths and weaknesses, or is how we think and feel about ourselves defined by other people, specific life experiences, and our culture? We have the power to choose what we believe, think, and feel through our life’s journey. 7. What are the three main groups of emotions that are signs that stress is present in your life? a. Fear b. Anger c. Depression

8. What is ego? Without possessions, success, and fame – who are we? We don’t know. We are our name, our fame, our prestige, our power. But other than these, who are we? So this whole possessiveness becomes our identity. It gives us a false sense of being. That’s the ego. Ego is not something mysterious; it is a very simple phenomenon. You don’t know who you are, and to live without knowing who you are is impossible. If I don’t know who I am, then what am I doing here? Then whatsoever I am doing becomes meaningless. The first and the foremost thing is to know who I am.

9. What is emotion and how is emotion created? The word “emotion” includes a wide range of observable behaviors, expressed feelings and changes in the body state. For many of us emotions are very personal states, difficult to define or to identify except in the most obvious instances. Moreover, many aspects of emotion seem unconscious to us. Even simple emotional states appear to be much more complicated than states as hunger and thirst. Emotion is a feeling that is private and subjective. Humans can report an extraordinary range of states, which they can feel or experience. Some reports are accompanied by obvious signs of enjoyment or distress, but often these reports have no overt indicators. In many cases, the emotions we note in ourselves seem to be blends of different states.

PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT – EXAM

10. What is the difference between emotion and feeling? Emotion is more similar to conscious thought than feelings are. Although emotion and feeling can be described as unconscious thought, one of them is going to be more similar to conscious thought. Feelings are more like sensations, when you touch something you get a feeling. Therefore feelings are faster than emotions and thought, because when you touch something there is a slight delay before you can think of something about it (thought), or feel something deeply about it (emotion). Emotion is therefore just unconscious thought. Actually it would better be described as unconscious feeling (so a feeling is like a conscious emotion because you can “feel” it better and easier but emotion is a deeper, more unconscious experience similar to unconscious thought, but emotions are also more similar to conscious thought because thought is a deep experience while feelings are intense or shallow, but not deep).

11. What are five examples of ego driven behaviors that are seen most frequently in the workplace? a. Criticizing b. Possessing c. Lying d. Resistance e. Envy

12. What are the five inner steps to manage your emotions? a. Awareness b. Acknowledgement c. Acceptance d. Ascension e. Attuning

13. Why is self awareness the most important “competency” in emotional intelligence? Because without that ability we can easily be distracted by emotions, it is what keeps us on track to produce results in anything we do, and to keep the necessary level of motivation, required level of social skills, especially those important for management positions. 14. What is relationship between identity and destiny? In the case of identity it is about answering the question “Who am I?”. Destiny is a way, a shroud in which we create our own lives, our belief of what we should be. There can be no identity if we don’t believe we have destiny.

15. What is the deepest motivator of any human being? It is a personal, clear sense of our way in life, our personal purpose – when you have personal purpose then you know your place in the world, and even more importantly, what are you going to do from this moment on.

PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT – EXAM
16. What is emotional literacy? Emotional literacy is the term used to describe the ability to understand and express feelings. It involves having self-awareness and recognition of one’s own feelings and knowing how to manage them, such as the ability to stay calm when angered or to reassure oneself when in doubt. It includes empathy, i.e. having sensitivity to the feelings of other people and it has been said that emotionally literate people are able to employ self-discipline in order to harness their emotions and identify and reach their personal goals. Emotional literacy also includes being able to recognize and adapt to the feelings of other people,
whilst at the same time, learning how to manage and express one’s own emotions effectively. This is helpful to developing good communication skills and the enhancement of our relationships with other people. It is especially important that young children develop emotional literacy because they need to have recognition of their emotions in order to know how to behave, mature and ultimately be happy.

17. What is the difference between empathy and sympathy? Sympathy emphasizes sharing distressing feelings whereas empathy does not emphasize any particular type of feeling. The listener using empathy shares (experiences) whatever feelings the talker is expressing at the moment, regardless of whether the feelings are distressing (grief, for example) or pleasant (love, for example).Sympathy may also involve agreeing with some aspects of the other person’s feelings, beliefs, etc. whereas empathy emphasizes understanding all of them with no interest in either agreeing or disagreeing. Sympathy focuses on sharing (experiencing) a person’s bad news or feelings, feeling sorry for the person suffering the bad news/feelings, and whether the sympathizer agrees with any of the person’s beliefs, opinions, or goals whereas empathy focuses on sharing (experiencing) a person’s bad and good news or feelings and understanding the bad or good news/feelings rather than feeling sorry for the person’s bad news/feelings or agreeing or disagreeing with the person’s beliefs, opinions, or goals.

18. Which of the seven “home truths” about conflict do you think is most important and why? Although I believe that all of these things are important, I would take number four, our personal investment in the situation, and because when we care about something we have to invest in it. That is a closed circle of things, because our beliefs are challenged and yet we have to operate to complete the task at hand. Compromise and looking the things “from above” are two key words here.

19. When you begin to question an employee about non-performing a function assigned to her earlier in the week she immediately starts to defend why she has not completed the task. In pursuing the issue, she becomes more and more defensive and eventually she starts to avoid you. How would you approach this employee about her behavior? There are many possible reasons for this kind of behavior and it is almost impossible to detect real reasons behind it without sitting and talking with the person. She may have difficulties about the job itself; you personally, team colleagues, personal problems. What I do in such situations is by the person a drink during one lunch break and talk to him/her about it. In very few cases it was a lack of technical knowledge;almost always it was some problem with either personal life or in the organization aspect of the company. Once I understood what the problem really was we could start solving it, but the key was to go slowly, gently and talk to the person about the real cause of the problem. 20. In real conflict situation what is the difference between “position” and “interest”? Disputants often describe a conflict in very simple terms. These often take the form “We want this, but they want that,” or “I want this, and he wants it too (but we can’t both have it).” These simple statements about what people do and do not want are “positions.” While some conflicts are really structured a win- lose way, many conflicts which are thought to be unavoidable win-lose situations are more manageable when redefined in terms of underlying interests. Unlike positions, interests are the reasons why people want things, and can, if properly communicated, can form the basis of easier conflict resolution. 21. Why do people resist change? It is often said that the only things in life that are inevitable are death and taxes. To that you can add change. And change is happening faster than at any time in human history.

Why do we resist…because of fear. Fear of losing, failure, loss of control, that the new way may not be better, unknown, personal impact, etc. We all experience moments of change in our lives. In can be a tragedy, or it can be something good. Sometimes we force change and sometimes it’s forced upon us. Change comes in all shapes and sizes and can be a very disruptive force in our lives. Even small changes, can throw us out of balance. Sometimes it’s as simple as a routine, or good habit, being broken. If enough time has passed and enough disruption has occurred, it can be hard to get back on track. Part of a maintaining a good work/life balance is taking a break now and again. The problem lies in that sometimes, a break is such a disruption you can lose momentum in various aspects of your life. 22. What is the difference between identity and the role? Identity is who you are. This is what you use when you define yourself, basic facts about yourself. Role is what your identity plays upon, what role you lead in life. This is something you choose to do. what you make yourself to be like, the things you do, the actions you take, the choices you make.

23. What are the three main “faculties” of consciousness? a.) The subconscious b.) The conscious c.) The super conscious

24. How do you change a habit? Habits are patterns that run our lives. Habits take the pressure off of needing to consciously control every aspect of daily life. These patterns run in the background allowing us to focus our efforts on more important things. Our brain creates these patterns to help us run common tasks on autopilot so we don’t have to spend our attention on them. Despite the incredible power of habits, there are probably a few habits we would like to remove. If we want to remove or change a habit we need to spend more time planning it. Changing habits can often be a delicate surgery, especially for really entrenched habits – removing with willpower alone is like trying to conduct that surgery with a club. Instead, we need to find our scalpel. It basically takes four steps: analyze, form a strategy, prepare (pain and pleasure) and act.

25. What is the law that operates within dynamics of all relationships in life? It is influence, which can come from either a forceful way (bad way) or through conversation, mutual understanding and create much stronger bonds in our relationships with other people, especially that we care most about.

26. What is respect? Respect is something that has to be earned. Teachers, authority figures and many other groups of people are classified as people who are supposed to be given respect. Not only are people supposed to be
given respect, but people’s decisions are also supposed to be respected.

The dictionary definition defines respect as “to consider deserving of high regard.” Respect can take years to earn or it can almost be earned overnight. Teachers, authority figures and other groups of people spend years in school before they earn their respect. Musicians can write a song and earn respect almost immediately. Respect can be lost in an instant one word, one decision or one action can lose a person their respect. People can spend their whole lives thinking of ways to earn respect, but unless they do something they will never get it. Everyone has a different opinion on respect and who deserves theirs. In contrast respect is something everyone wants and something no-one wants to loose.

27. Why is having clear purpose of yourself so important? To have a clear purpose and specific goal in life, particularly when in a position of leadership, is essential. If we do not know why we are here, then we should not be overly surprised if we do not know exactly what we should be doing. Purpose gives true meaning to every aspect of our lives and simplifies it in so many ways. When we have a specific purpose and when we know what that purpose is it keeps us focused and encourages and motives and inspires us.

28. What is the difference between purpose and vision? Those two terms are much related, purpose is our answer to the question “why”, the fixed, stable element, and without the purpose there can be no vision (for instance why we wake up every morning (purpose) and the beauty of the morning after we wake up (vision)).So the purpose is something we seek (in the grand scale, the purpose of life) and vision is how we see that purpose achieved. PRACTICAL APPLICATION 29. Your team You are a manager responsible to guide the development of the members of your team. They are a mix of different personalities at different levels of motivation and awareness, and with a
variety of different attitudes. MARY –seems to be “tick skinned” and while this is good in that she is not easily affected by others comments and judgments, it also means she is not open to others ideas and does not like to join in anything. Mary is difficult to approach and make connection with. A) What do you think could be underlying ‘issue’ (blockage) with Mary? It is very difficult to say without more information but it is probably some previous experience through which she learns to “protect” herself from people with bad intensions. Although this “shield” blocks her ability to acquire new knowledge and broaden her mind, it is quite common in highly demanding job environments.

The other possibility is some bad personal experience through which she “learned” not to “trust” people. Without more information, which can be acquired with honest talk, it is very difficult to say more. B) As her manager what would be your AIM in helping Mary develop herself? I would have to talk to Mary and see the cause of the real problem. Probably when I learned more about this (if and when she would be willing to share ) I would either help her in a way to lower her shield, or if it something between two people, start her on a path of communication and problem resolve. But the first I would have to do is find the real source of the problem. C) How would you approach Mary to help her develop – what method/process would you use in your approach to her?

Although I could answer this question using procedures we learned in the class, I won’t use that answer. I would approach her in the friendliest and informal way I could, gain her trust and then see how I can help her to start helping herself. That is the most important thing, everything else are methods. 30. FRED is highly critical of your management style. He says things to others behind your back and whenever you speak with him he is moody and distant. You are upset by this and find it hard to communicate with him. How you would handle this situation internally(with yourself) and externally (in your interaction with Fred) The problem has to be solved externally, again we don’t have too enough background information to make a decisive decision, but it is obvious that he either has a problem with you, or, possibly, with something else in his personal or professional life and is externalizing it in that way. Either way, through emphatic listening we first have to learn what the real problem is and start from there. 31. DAVID is someone who likes to create scene, is frequently negative and always trying to upset others. He is seen by the rest of the team as ‘the problem’ and troublemaker. Everyone else tends to complain about him. But he is also bright and has good ideas, it’s his attitude that puts people off.

How would you handle this situation internally and externally (with David and the rest of the team)? This is basically just the extension of the previous answer. I would first go and talk to the rest of the team and acquire as much information (objective) as I can and then would go and talk to David to see the cause of the problem. In order not to repeat myself, I would just say that there are many possibilities why is this man “problematic” – personal, conflict in the company, wrong job, etc. If we approach this situation with an open mind we could probably resolve it in a way that would satisfy everybody. 32. Your Boss- he is struggling with his leadership style. He is a strong character and although he talks about empowering, motivating and influencing he still uses positional power (command and control) to get things done. Sometimes he tries but it’s clear he gets impatient and it’s clear that more flexible and open is difficult for him. He has also been on a variety of self management courses where you know he has been learning how to see himself differently and pick up some relationship skills. What do you think it could be underlying ‘issue’ blockage with your boss and what do you think in what ways could you help your boss to soften his leadership style? This is management vs. leadership typical situation.

He doesn’t want to give up his (fictive) sense of control and believes that he knows the best and that has to micromanage – or just doesn’t know any better. Sometimes I saw it is because he doesn’t trust his people or because he is part control-freak. All these problems have to be solved with dialog and compromise, which can be sometimes difficult because he is a boss. But, that situation is unattainable in the long run, so someone has to step up and say that he has to change something, or at least start a communication in a way that “we have to try something else”. Or the best people will leave the company and what remains will do the job very badly and unmotivated. 33. Short Essay – Why personal development and self management are vital to Living and Successful and Happy Life. Clarify the difference between personal development and self management; Explore the meanings of success and happiness. In the beginning to first answer the question about the difference between personal development and self-management. For me self-management is a first step of personal development, when you use “aids” to get ahead, to advance yourself in some way, but in time those “additions” become unnecessary and even detrimental. Therefore, self-management is for me just a first step in a complete process of personal development. Other topics of this essay are success, happiness and personal development value. To start with first two…happiness is not always connected with success (especially business success)…if we are talking about how success affects our happiness it is connected with how much we cared about the thing we have succeeded in – if we have no connection with it we don’t have to happy about, we could be only relieved that we have done it and that we are finished with it. On the other hand, if we had a personal interest (connection) in the thing in which we succeeded (for instance, if it was a result of a long time learning process) then obvious feeling we would get is a sensation of achievement and happiness.

But to be happy we really need, sometimes, very little – it can be a company of a person I haven’t seen in a long time, a beautiful morning or anything else that makes me a complete person. So for me, happiness can be but isn’t necessarily connected with success. Success has a “fighting” note about it (we succeeded in something and the other didn’t or we did something better than others) that doesn’t have to have a happiness component included in it. Success is critical in many aspects of our lives, especially in the field of self-fulfillment; it is a “food” for our emotional engine, something that we need in order to compare ourselves with others, which a normal and natural behavior. But happiness on the other hand is a state of mind, we can be happy for any number of reasons, it is state we are in, and to discuss cause of happiness is a very personal and unique thing – for somebody to see a beautiful morning is enough to be happy. Personal development plays a major role in this, from all the themes and subject we discussed one thing is critical, and that is our constant need to improve ourselves or become physically or emotionally obsolete. In the end we are all animals at some stage of development and even from that basic perspective we are “triggered” to constantly advance ourselves in any way possible or perish.

Although it is no longer that drastic because of the “shield” of modern civilization so called “benefits”, the fact is that we as people or civilization have to grow or we will sooner or later disappear. To finish, although I could write much more about this subject, personal development is key to our existence and survival, as individuals or species, as single units of existence or organisms which inherit this Earth. There is no choice or option about. Although we have a cloth of “civilization” around us that shields us, we cannot stop trying to improve ourselves as unique humans and as part of a greater entity. Through the processes we discussed in class (and many others) and those implanted in us by years of evolution, we constantly try to be better than we are today, and that is a way that nature works. To improve ourselves means to succeed in personal things, and that should bring a sense of joy and accomplishment to our hearts and souls, and it is what makes us happy. All these emotions, states and processes are a part of a greater whole, a natural circle of life that we are “prescribed” to as human beings and short-time guests of Earth. Everything else is just how we as a civilization structured our lives to live harmoniously.

To live without happiness is not to experience some great life moments, like life without love or family, but it is all a process of developing yourself to be a different person, more connected with your society and nature as a whole – it is something you are wired to do, whether you admit it or not – it something we all do to some extent to call ourselves human.

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