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Failure is Not an Option

When ever I am faced with adversity or doubt, this is the sign I look at in my office,  (and then I "Spring into Action").

Download the PDF to print here:


Get it Done Thought of the Day: Spring into Action

When my mother, Auschwitz survivor was up against adversity she would say, "It's time to spring into action!"

That philosophy led to her and her sisters to escape a death march in January of 1945 and served her the rest of her life.


Dealing with Relatives Tip of the Day

  Over the next couple of weeks I'll be posting my favorite stories and strategies I've heard for dealing successfully with relatives. Here's the first:

Have a Mantra. There's a couple I know, who before leaving the house for an event, will look each other in the eyes and simultaneously say, “Just visiting.”

When they arrive, but before they ring the bell they look at each other and say, “ Just visiting.“

During the event if things start getting stressful they just give each other the look and silently say to themselves, “Just visiting.”

A pair of adult sisters use with their mother, “She's just making conversation.”  That prevents them from getting caught up or taking too seriously their mother’s wild tangents or illogic. Instead they remind themselves, “She’s just making conversation,”  and that gives them permission to not engage, but just simply change the subject.

What's your mantra?




Study Shows Ignoring a "Jerk" Causes Less Stress Then Reacting

A study found that by reacting to a person, rather than ignoring them, causes more stress and distraction that lasts far longer than the actual event. I was honored to be a communication expert in this article at Woman's Health where the theme is "when to hold'em, when to fold 'em" or when do you do something about a behavior and when do you let it go. In this article I answer the age old questions of what to do if:

The situation: A woman cuts you in line at Starbucks

The situation: Your boyfriend / husband leaves his dirty clothes strewn over the floor for the hundredth time

The situation: Someone keeps texting in the middle of a movie

The situation: While you’re walking down the street, a dude hollers, “Hey baby, lookin’ good!”

The situation: Your slacker coworker asks you to help him finish his quarterly report

The situation: A close friend shows up an hour late to your birthday dinner

The situation: During holiday dinner, Uncle Marvin says, “You look really tired.”



Time Flies...

Greetings Conscious Communicator,

Dr. Rick Brinkman 1971

In a few weeks I will be attending my 40th reunion of Stuyvesant High School in New York City.

This is the first reunion I am aware of and my theory is because we were the last all-male graduating class, we didn't have any girls to organize social events.

In my time, though not my class, was Paul Reiser and three current members and advisors of Obama's cabinet including Attorney General Eric Holder. He was a senior in my first year and in fact ;-) I think he gave me my first wedgie! ;-)



Attitude is Up to You

I presented to 1600 people at the American Medical Directors Association recently. One of the doctors came up to me and shared an expression I want to share with you: In life pain is inevitable.

Misery is optional.



College Senior Freakout

I was recently interviewed by Her Campus for tips to deal with "senior freakout." Meaning ;-) college life is over and you have to join the real world. ;-) The process I suggest is valid for anyone dealing with anything. It's about how to control your reactions and put yourself in the state of being you need to be successful with whatever you are dealing with.

You can access the article here.



Tis the Season to Deal with Relatives

I recently was interviewed by Woman's World magazine on Dealing with Relatives. I believe the article is in the current issue. Here is a link to access a PDF version or simply click on the graphic.

But wait there's more!!!

In case you haven't gotten it yet here is a 90 minute audio-seminar I did last year on Dealing with Relatives. It covers Martyrs and Judges and defusing your reactions. And speaking of defusing, while you are at the Relatives web page check out the hypnosis audio. It will defuse your triggers with Relatives from the inside out so they can do what used to drive you crazy and it won't matter to you anymore. I have gotten great feedback over the year on it's effectiveness. You'll find it all at:



To Do or Not to Do

I have some motivational signs posted in my office, mostly to do with focus and belief. I shared the Rule of Acquisition #173 in the last post. Here is another favorite of mine that most visitors to my office seem to gravitate to:






A Stone's Throw

Auschwitz Train Entrance

In August of 1944 the Lodz ghetto of Poland was liquidated. That meant all the Jews were sent to Auschwitz. But the Germans kept my father and the people in his factory together. The officer in charge told my father his group was ultimately going to be sent to a Siemens factory in Germany. Apparently my father had created such an efficient team that the Germans wanted to keep them intact.

When they arrived at Auschwitz my father's group was not processed like most prisoners meaning; children and any one frail right to gas chambers, the others shaved, tattooed. etc.  They kept my father's group sitting on grassy hill. The other prisoners who worked for the Germans were stunned. They had never seen something like this before.

A German officer finally came with soldiers who carried a bunch of stuff. The German officer would hold up an item and ask if my father's group could make such a thing.  Eventually the men and women were separated into their individual camps, however for the next 5 days they all remained unassigned in Auschwitz.

At one point my father was standing next to the barbed wire and saw my mother across the way in the women's camp. The distance between them was the width of a typical residential street including the side walks. There was a high fence of  barbed wire on each side. At this point they still had some paper and they would write notes to each other, wrap the note in a rock and throw it across. My mother didn't have much of an arm, and her notes would land in no man's land. My father's notes did reach my mother.

Each day they would meet at a certain time at the barbed wire. But then one day as my father thew a note he was caught by a German guard. "What are you doing?" he barked. My father explained in German he was thowing a note to his wife. My father thought he was dead for sure.  But the guard merely said, "Away from the wire" and moved on.

The next day the Siemen's transfer was cancelled and they were processed into Auschwitz. That was the last time my mother and father would see each other, until a year and half later, after the war was long over.

My mother said she never forgot the last note. She translated it as saying, "My sweet, don't worry, we will be together again and I will kiss you and hold you in my arms."