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I’ve added your articles list to my RSS feed, and look forward to following more of your insights.

If people understood just what you’ve posted above I can only begin to imagine the impact it would have on businesses.

2. Brian Mistler | July 9th, 2007 at 5:24 pm

Agreed (with the article and the comments).

I’ve worked with Dr. Higley now for several years, and knowing him and the Building Blocks / Excellence Tree Materials, and having studied Covey myself for years, am convinced that these programs represent a better understanding of Carl Rogers and Steven Covey’s material that any other business trainer I’ve known.

The article above points to and demonstrates that pretty well, doesn’t it .

“Creating an organizational process that is more Fully Functioning will not only earn your money, but will also positively impact you, your employees, your clients, and your little part of the world. What could be more satisfying?” — pure Covey’s 8th Habit

And, all the rest are, to me, a pretty nicely put version of Covey’s material and a core humanistic business philosophy.

3. John Spence | July 10th, 2007 at 2:12 pm

I’ve just come back from a week at the Aspen Institute for their annual “Ideas Festival” where more then 200 of the top business and world leaders of today converged to discuss the future of American competitiveness and one things was abundantly clear… smart, bright, talented people will be the very foundation of competitiveness in the future — and these sort of people will ONLY work in organizations they feel good about, are proud of and have fun in — in other words — fully functioning organizations. I might also add, that a leader’s organization will never become “fully functioning” until they work on themselves first.

The seven key points that Dr. Higley lays out in this article are right on target — for building a more satisfying and fully functional life and business. Very good ideas here – well played. John

4. Brian Higley | July 11th, 2007 at 10:39 am

I agree with John Spence’s assertion above regarding the correlation between leaders and their organizations (“. . . a leader’s organization will never become “fully functioning” until they work on themselves first.”). This is why I’ve also written an article on this blog covering “Self-Mastery” at: . It might be a nice companion article to this one.

5. Kevin Tate | November 13th, 2007 at 10:34 pm

I am a student in a Counseling program, and am new to the world of business consulting. What is quite refreshing about reading this article is to see the way in which these concepts are stated without the “B.S.”. I send a lot of time reading very long books with very long words, and it is nice to see it spelled out so clearly and to the point.

As for my nonmedical opinion: Talk about your depression as much as possible. At first, it won’t be easy and you might worry about what people will think. But choose a trusted family member, friend, or professional and you’ll learn that many people share similar experiences. Talking about it eases the isolation that results from internalizing your mental health condition.

Because no matter the face of your depression, it’s always easier to look into the mirror when there’s a shoulder to lean on standing next to you.

In the field of mental health, there’s still so much we don’t know. But what we do know is that depression and anxiety disorders affect far too many people for our society to remain ignorant about them.

Being depressed doesn’t make me lazy, antisocial, or a bad friend and mom. And while I can do a great deal of things, I’m not invincible. I recognize that I need help and a support system.

And that’s OK.


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Fourth, good ideas in evolution are often easy to spot because they appear nearly exactly the same across many different kinds of organisms. Although the DNA codes for millions of different organisms, the basic structure of the molecule and the process by which it replicates itself is the same across much of the living world. Heat shock proteins, which go around the body repairing damaged proteins, are both present and nearly identical in almost all organisms on earth. Thus, the biologically inspired ideas I propose here are not just stab-in-the-dark guesses that happened to work out well for a snail or a soybean plant somewhere, but time-tested billion-year-old solutions that have worked out in the coldest, highest, darkest, hottest, most predator-full and water-starved places on earth.

Fifth, good ideas in evolution are often the things that evolved independently multiple times. Eyes, for example, are a good solution for finding your way around in a complex world, but there isn’t one common type of eye that evolved billions of years ago and that we all share. This security solution arose independently several times in different types of organisms. Octopuses have incredible eyes that serve the same kinds of functions as our eyes, but they are unique to octopuses. This phenomenon, called convergent evolution , is evidence that evolution is not about taking one design and plopping it down all over, but about solving problems particular to a given organism in a given environment. Here I propose ideas for security that mimic natural solutions, but they may also have been explored by other people or organizations who didn’t make any reference to nature at all. I consider these coincident solutions to be examples of convergent evolution – different people trying to solve the problem of how to be ensure security in society and coming up with similar solutions.

Sixth, under the lens of natural history, humans are special, but not that special. There are a number of adaptations we have – such as advanced cognition and language – that both set us apart from most other species and create a lot of the complex security threats we face, but we are, in the end, just another species that evolved through time to deal with security challenges in our environment. With over a billion people facing chronic nutrition shortages, 4 and a host of old and emerging diseases that threaten to turn into human pandemics, we are undoubtedly still subject to the pressures of natural selection. Moreover, the way we have evolved has changed our environment enough to force us to adapt further. This cuts several ways for us – we are extremely adaptable, but we also may have changed our world and way of living faster than some parts of us can evolve. Some of our adaptations, which first arose in societies and on a planet completely unlike that in which we live today, can get us into trouble now.

Finally, and most important, change and variation rule everything in nature. As Darwin mused during his long journey on the Beagle , “where on the face of the earth can we find a spot, on which close investigation will not discover signs of that endless cycle of change, to which this earth has been, is, and will be subjected?” Marks and Spencer Round Stone Ring gold D07QqWcQn

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