Posted by: Anne | December 1, 2012

Give the Gift: Put People Up

The No Put Down Game

These are the rules, the way to play the game is simply to time yourself and see how long you can go without putting anyone down. Can you go for ten minutes? An hour? It may not be as easy as it sounds.

The rules forbid putting anyone down, out loud, including yourself. The “joking” put down is also prohibited because it usually has a sharp barb attached to it. It is certainly possible to tease someone in a warm, loving way, but to rule out the possibility that the teasing, joking put down is just a clever way of sneaking in individual, personal, private project. Do not tell anyone else what you are doing. Just time yourself and see how long you can go. You are only working on YOURSELF! Calling another person’s attention to the fact he has just put someone down is a put down, even if you were the one being attached.

When you find out how long you can go without any putdowns, then see if you can break your record. See if you can go for a longer period next time.

At the same time, develop the habit of putting other people UP instead of down. See what happens if instead of undermining other people, you make their good feelings come out about themselves. Be alert to the positive feelings that you have about another person. Be aware of what is going on inside you and when you feel a sense of admiration or regard or warmth for another person, go ahead and express it. You will be so happy with the results. As you will spend a little more time putting people up and less time putting them down, you will not only be enhancing your environment, but you will find yourself liking you better, too. You will be building your feelings of self esteem as you develop the ability to reinforce the positive qualities of others.

When you deal with people, you always accomplish more by praising the qualities that you admire than you can ever accomplish by criticizing the behavior or attitudes of other people when they are doing something “wrong” which means they are doing it not the way you want them to do it. But it is much better to admire them for the good they are doing.

Picture this, imagine a husband and wife sitting in a restaurant. One of them says to the other, ”You’re not really going to eat that piece of banana cream pie are you?” The question and tone of voice that goes with it has the reinforcing effect, but not in the way that the person had in mind! Pointing out the behavior you do not admire and would like to see changed often has the reverse effect. It might be better to wait until the other person passes up the dessert to comment on that in a positive manner. ” I know how much you like desserts, honey, and I really admire your decision to not have any.”

If you are in a management role, or if you are a parent, sometimes you encounter situations where someone under your supervision has done something badly. Your child broke a plate. Something does need to be said but what the child does not need is to have someone tell him, ”You broke the plate!” He knows that already. He’s aware of what he did and feels bad about it already – without having someone to remind him of what happened.

What he needs is some help in how to handle this kind of project differently, better, NEXT TIME. He needs some loving, coaching guidance on how to handle a plate. “That didn’t work so well did it?” “Next time you will have a better grip.”

A sales manager may say to one of his sales people, “When the telephone rang in the middle of your presentation, you lost your momentum and never quite got back on track. Next time a phone call breaks your stride, how can you handle it better? What can you do to get back on track and close the sale?” In many cases it will be desirable to give your opinion about something which might work next time. Above all, be sure to discuss the activity or the behavior, NOT the person. The coaching kind of helpfulness on the part of the manager or parent is more likely to be in the category of a “next time” message and an expression of opinion, rather than advice.

Read the whole article at

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: