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3 Reasons Why Diversity and Inclusion are Essential to the Workplace

It is important that diversity and inclusion are practiced in every aspect of our life — starting with the workplace. Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) have become more than just HR checklist items; they’ve grown into a cultural phenomenon that — when executed correctly — has a direct effect on the bottom line. These days, it’s … Read more

Unconscious Bias: How It Affects Us More Than We Know

When you type CEO, CFO OR CTO in your textbox on your iPhone, notice what comes up. It is an emoji of a man in a suit. Shocking, isn’t it, that this sexism exists? Even seemingly innocuous things as an emoji can reinforce these gendered stereotypes and demonstrate the structural sexism inherent in our society. … Read more

12 Unconscious Bias Examples and How to Avoid them in the Workplace.

If you’re hiring based on ‘gut feeling,’ you’re likely hiring on the basis of unconscious bias. The best way to prevent yourself from succumbing to these unconscious biases is to become aware of them and take action to prevent them when recruiting, hiring and retaining employees. Doing so will help your team build a more diverse and inclusive workplace. … Read more

4 Ways to Facilitate Effective Communication in the Workplace

Effective communication in the workplace can improve collaboration, engagement and the employee experience. Here are four strategies to help. Effective communication in the workplace builds strong team relationships, empowers healthy manager and employee collaborations and helps the organization advance toward its goals. Yet creating the conditions for effective communication — both at the individual level … Read more

How teambuilding leads to innovation

As Albert Einstein once said: “Play is the highest form of research.” We’re taught to play at a young age – to be creative, think innovatively, be imaginative.  And then, out of nowhere, we’re told to put aside our childish things, grow up, and move on. But, as HR leaders are starting to realise, it … Read more

How To Effectively Complain in the Workplace

As a former human resources manager, I can assure that most employees are not aware that they are annoying you. You may find your loved one’s quirks adorable, but when it comes to your colleagues’ annoying habits, some simply drive you crazy! From coast to coast, Canadians in different sectors of the economy write to … Read more

Managing Different Personality Types on Your Team

Meet Jana Hashim, HR professional and fashion model. A multitude of personalities, work and management styles, along with deadlines don’t always make for the most harmonious of environments. For Hashim, this is simply an opportunity to work her magic. She thrives on the challenge of disseminating personality quirks, building teams and resolving conflicts. “I think … Read more

What Highly Sensitive People Need to Be Happy

Growing up, I was a very sensitive child. One of my earliest memories is of freaking out after seeing a particularly bad story on the news. I don’t remember what the story was about, but I do remember running into my bedroom, plugging my ears, and making up a song about how “everything will be … Read more

Caution! Using Self-Labels Can Be Hazardous to Your Health

The Voice of Reason | Psychology Today
Article originally posted here.

We often see the world through dark-gray lenses that color our life experience and twist or distort everything to the negative. It’s one of the main symptoms of depression, but labeling yourself in this way is also common among anyone who experienced harmful, stressful, or negative life experiences as a young person and may have come to believe the critical statements as true facts.

What do I mean by a self-label? It’s a description you place on yourself, or a way you regard yourself, that is narrowly focused and pigeon-holes you in a certain way—in this case, in a negative light. Such labels are usually not correct but are a distortion of the real facts. For example, it might be that you tell yourself, “I’m no good,” “I’m the plain one, not the pretty one,” or “I’ll never amount to anything.” Or you may hear in your head statements like “You’re lazy” or “He’s the good one, you’re the bad one” and believe that this status is a permanent condition and not “fixable.”

You must ask yourself where these negative statements came from. Who is “saying” them to you, if only in your head, and why? Do they come from a parent or other authority figure who had an impact on your early life? Just because an influential or controlling parent says something about you does not mean that it is true. Parents or grandparents, teachers, clergy, and other authority figures are human, have flaws, and make mistakes. But as a child, we do not know or understand this and cannot challenge them. We believe their words to be true and take them inside of us, through the process known as internalizing. Ask yourself now: Do these statements have any foundation or basis for the truth? The answer is almost certainly No.

There is a danger in believing these negative statements and declaring yourself permanently “no good” or “unfixable.” Believing something that is not a true reflection of you can cause emotional pain and suffering. It can have a major impact on the way you see yourself and think about yourself—and how you present yourself to the world. In thinking this way your mind is closed to the possibilities of what you might accomplish, or who you might become in the future. Experiences and opportunities that might have been available to you no longer are. Since you don’t give yourself a chance, you set yourself up for failure, disappointment, and unhappiness.

So how do you avoid using labels and keep them from overtaking your thinking? It takes a lot of concentrated effort—a good thing to work on with a therapist—but you can also address it on your own. Here’s one way to begin: First, be aware and try to identify when it is happening. Next, challenge your negative thoughts one at a time. When you recognize a negative label that you have just applied to yourself, stop and ask yourself if it is really true. Try to think of where in your past it came from, and who it is who might have said it to you. And then ask yourself if that thought really applies now.

It can be helpful to search out evidence for and against the negative thought as you try to challenge it. Try this exercise: Take a piece of paper and draw a line down the center. On the top of one column write Evidence For and atop the other, Evidence Against. Start to fill in the two columns with concrete examples from your life that speak for or against the negative thought or label. You should soon see that the negative label has little to support it.