nuggets for learning

Cultivate Positive Thinking Habits (1): Get Rid of Prejudices

In the 21st Century, where the effect of globalisation has hit the shores of every nation, every community, the ability to handle diversity soon became a highly-sought after skill in leaders everywhere.

In face of such diversity, are we truly able to accept the differences? Can we celebrate the differences? Are we really free of prejudices?

Interpersonal relations often begin with finding a common point, and building the relationship from there. If we have formed certain opinions beforehand, chances are that we would tend to focus on the differences rather than the common points. Be it within family members or corporate teams, we need to be careful of our thoughts, are we focusing on the ties that bind or the gap between people?

Searching for the common point between people has brought Sophia from one tool to another, from DISC, MBTI, TJTA, to PEAKS, which is the tool of choice. Personality forms a the core of  a person, behaviour, attitudes, cognition, personal values, are all closely related to a person’s personality and PEAKS is by far the best tool to describe it.

Based on the five-factor model, created through multiple iterations and factor analysis, PEAKS takes a snapshot of a person’s inner self using terms which are simple to understand and easy to apply. Using PEAKS, a person can be understood based on:

P- purpose: how the person relates to tasks
E – energy: how the person relates to relationships
A – affirmation: how the person relates to authority
K – knowledge: how the person relates to change
S – sustainability: how sensitive the person is to stress

By using such a tool which captures the universal traits of a person, we can then figure out the common points in a shorter time, helping to get rid of prejudices, allowing relationships to be established and developed. Using this tool, leaders have found it easier to understand the diversity surrounding them to build the relationships that matter.

One of the most influential early Christian missionary, Paul, once wrote: “For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win the more; … to the weak I became as weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.” (1 Cor 9:19,22 NKJV)

Cultivate Positive Thinking Habits

King Solomon, probably the wisest king throughout history, left us with these words, “don’t eat with people who are stingy; don’t desire their delicacies. They are always thinking about how much it costs. “Eat and drink,” they say, but they don’t mean it.”

Our mind is the basic element of life, causing us to act or feel in a certain way. If one constantly think about the cost, no matter how much of an outward appearance we try to put up, it is hypocrisy at best. Yet, we know many who live life in a similar way, having their speech and actions inconsistent with their thoughts.

In our pursuit for a more wholesome life with a character worth telling our children about, we need to cultivate positive thinking habits. As the Chinese saying goes, it is easy to learn bad habits, but it is very difficult to learn good ones. Cultivating positive thinking requires toil and effort before we can reap the fruit of fulfillment and integrity.

Similar to cultivation in the field, the first step is to toil the soil, removing the rocks and the loosening the soil. In order to do that, we have to:

1) Get rid of prejudices

2) Break out from set thinking patterns

3) Challenge and control twisted thoughts

It is only with loosening the soil, which we can then go further to thought renewal processes.