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Tired of people coming to you with problems or complaints? Don’t take the bait!

RL Practice of the Month

Tired of people coming to you with problems or complaints? Don't take the bait!

Tired of people coming to you with problems or complaints?
Don’t take the bait!


Complaining is a common form of reactivity, and complaints increase as stress levels, uncertainty and change escalate. Sometimes the complaints aren’t even about the subject being raised, but rather are attempts to let off steam and lower anxiety. However, complaints can be very helpful if they are delivered at the right time and in the right way.


When someone comes to you with a reactive, emotionally driven complaint use the opportunity to coach them around the difference between a productive complaint and a reactive one. Productive complaints are thoughtful, well-grounded in facts, take into consideration the bigger picture, and include possible solutions when appropriate.

Try It:

Within the next few days you will more than likely be on the receiving end of a reactive complaint.

  • Step 1: Let the complainer do some venting while paying attention to the facts that he/she presents. The key here is to allow them to let off some of their steam while not indulging them in an unproductive venting session.
  • Step 2: Report back a brief summary of the facts of the complaint as you understood them along with an acknowledgement of how the person is feeling (e.g. “This situation is really frustrating for you.”)
  • Step 3: Ask a question that puts the ball back in their court and helps them to think more clearly.  (e.g., “What have you tried already to remedy the situation?”  “What would help you to move forward here?” or “What might be your best next step?

Over time, people will learn that you are not open to unproductive venting sessions but you are willing to coach them.  If they are only interested in venting (and not moving forward), they will find someone else to complain to!


Anxiety Rising?

Anxious These Days? Try  (1) Staying Calm, (2) Staying Connected, and (3) Staying the Course.

One of the basic challenges we all face at home and at work is how to achieve a healthy balance between our thinking and feeling responses. When our level of anxiety rises, either as a result of internal stressors (headaches, worry about the bills, etc.) or from the escalating anxiety of those around us (a family major illness, lay-offs at work, etc.) – our feeling levels also rise, and it becomes more difficult to maintain a healthy balance between thinking and feeling responses.

Need to know more or just get control over your emotions? Contact us — we can help.
If you want to see where you are personally, take our free or comprehensive RL Self-Analysis.

We all have an automatic tendency to react without thinking, after which a vicious cycle can quickly be established, with heightened feelings feeding anxieties which in turn make us more and more reactive. Couple this natural tendency with the fact that anxiety is cumulative. That is, our anxieties at work are added to anxieties at home which are added to anxieties in our communities and even nationally or globally.

Resilient Leadership points out the need for a leader to understand the dynamics involved in this potential chain reaction and to know how to moderate reactivity in him/herself as well in others. How so?

One helpful technique that Resilient Leadership has adopted was introduced by Ed Freidman, author of Failure of Nerve. Friedman used the metaphor of a “step-down transformer” to describe a leader’s preferred response when dealing with an anxious system as they take steps to avoid the potential chain reaction described above. The quality of the leader’s presence in times of heightened anxiety will make the difference, all the difference, in the emotional system that underpins and deeply impacts the effectiveness and productivity of others. The leader who learns to lead from a position of calm, clarity and strong conviction is able to serve those he/she influences in a way that enriches and inspires them to do their best.

Need to know more or just get control over your emotions? Contact us — we can help.
If you want to see where you are personally, take our free or comprehensive RL Self-Analysis.

What is really going on around here?

RL Practice of the Month

What is really going on around here?


Much, maybe most, of what is going on in the social networks of life is based on automatic functioning (AKA instinctual responses). We would like to think that our day-to-day action follows a well-considered, thoughtful pattern. Sorry – overwhelming scientific research indicates that’s not true. For the most part, we are being pulled along in the fast-moving and often turbulent currents of our emotions. What to do?


Three steps will help.

  1. First: Simply be more self-observant. Get in touch with your own emotional state. Notice the people and events that are triggering you and how you react when triggered.
  2. Next: Consider your part in the drama unfolding around you. Work at seeing yourself more objectively and then ask yourself, “What’s my part in this?”
  3. Finally: Decide— “What should I do now?”

Try It:

During the month of October, on Sunday evening select one important relationship for the upcoming week to practice recasting your way of thinking and behaving with an expanded level of self-awareness. In other words, stay awake during your interactions with this person, manage your own reactive tendencies and see what happens.

Would you like to know more about leading with calm, clarity, and conviction?

Resilient Leadership shares leadership method information at CFHLA HEAT Trade Show

At the CFHLA HEAT, visitors to the Resilient Leadership booth heard Jim Burns and Jim Moyer share information about a leadership method specifically designed to help leaders face and manage even in the most challenging situations.

It was a great show – well planned, organized and executed.   Thanks to all the folks who stopped by to say hello and give us a few minutes to talk about Resilient Leadership . If you missed us, you will be interested in the handouts we provided.

Our organization, Resilient Leadership LLC was delighted to have Jim Burns hosting our booth at this year’s CFHLA HEAT.  Jim earned his RL Coach Certification in 2018 and has been very helpful in speeding the word about Resilient Leadership, in the greater Orlando area. Welcome Jim!

At the CFHLA HEAT, people kept asked about our Iceberg Model. We talked a lot about how to Stay Calm, Stay Connected and Stay the Course.  First steps in learning about being more resilient took place all day as visitor connected with the important ideas of RL. Lots of learning and lots of fun too.


  • By learning how to SEE, THINK and LEAD within their organizational dynamics with much greater clarity, conviction and command.
  • By increasing their level of self-awareness, self-regulation and self-command.
  • By literally GROWING UP in very new and very rewarding ways.
  • Download the RL Overview
  • Download Jim Burns / Jim Moyer CV

Do we grow more from Comfort or from Challenge?

RL Practice of the Month

Do we grow more from Comfort or from Challenge?

Do we grow more from Comfort
or from Challenge?


Our body’s immune system grows stronger when it is faced with a virus or manageable threat that it must defend against by growing antibodies. This is at the heart of why immunizations work. The human system strengthens itself by overcoming adversity. Likewise, individuals and organizations grow stronger from overcoming adversity, from being stretched outside of their comfort zones, and from the challenge of finding new capacities within themselves.


Consider the extent to which you are currently asking yourself and others to stretch, to grow and to face challenge and adversity. The role of the leader is to act much like the immune system of the body, developing stronger internal capabilities in the face of adversity, which in turn builds confidence, fortitude, and strength. What new challenge might you undertake yourself or offer your family or team to strengthen the capacity to face and overcome challenges?

Try It:

As we move toward the end of the year, consider what growth opportunities exist which will help strengthen yourself, your family, and/or your team. What new capabilities can be developed in 2020 which will equip you, your family, and/or your team to be stronger, more prepared, more capable. Think it through, make a plan, face and meet a new challenge!

  1. Try our Self-Assessment to find out how resilient you really are
  2. Learn about our upcoming Resilient Leadership Certification Program

Would you like to know more about leading with calm, clarity, and conviction?


The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Really?

RL Practice of the Month

RL Practice of the Month-August

The apple doesn’t fall far
from the tree. Really?


The nugget of folk wisdom contained in this familiar saying may seem quaint to the point of being more myth than fact. But there is an accumulating—and by now conclusive—body of research that has documented the extent to which both “nature and nurture” conspire to shape the person we are. We “inherit” both our strengths and our vulnerabilities from a combination of genetics and epigenetics, from our DNA and from environmental factors such as the emotional patterns passed down to us across multiple generations of our family tree.


Increasing awareness is the essential starting point for improving how you show up as a leader. Grow your self-awareness (by personal observation and from conversations with family members) of the automatic, inherited family patterns that drive how you interact as a leader at home and at work.

Try It:Gather information about the topics or situations that “trigger” an emotional response from you. Make some choices:

  • Think to Yourself – “Am I triggered when someone challenges my authority, or my knowledge, or my motives?” What else? Be specific.
  • Ask Others – Ask a few family members and a few colleagues– “What are 2 or 3 topics or situations that you notice trigger a reactive response from me?”
  • Look Across Your Examples: Where is there commonality in your triggers or reactive behavior as seen by yourself or others? Is it possible that something in your past (either family upbringing or other life experiences) makes you especially vulnerable to this trigger?
  • Ask Yourself: “What changes will I make to have more self-command when triggered?” .

Would you like to know more about leading with calm, clarity, and conviction?


Bridgette Theurer on Resilient Leadership Development

Resilient Leadership is a big shift in thinking. Coaches who become Certified in Resilient Leadership (RL) develop new capabilities for helping their clients live and lead with greater awareness, understanding and command of themselves. RL concepts, tools and methods helps people SEE, THINK and LEAD with much greater insight into the emotional processes which surround and influence everything. Listen to what Bridgette has to say about the impact of Resilient Leadership on her coaching practice.

A New Way of Thinking – White Paper

A New Way of Thinking White PaperIn this document we invite you to focus on the nature of the “New Way of THINKING” that has the potential to transform to a dramatic degree the effectiveness of leaders everywhere. “What exactly is this New Way” you might ask. The short answer to this question is to “think systems”, but more specifically it is a mandate to “Think Emotional Systems”.

Foundational to this way of thinking is a recognition that every organization—in fact, every group of people who interact together often enough to have formed a cohesive unit—is made up of both a “Rational System” and an “Emotional System”.

Click here to read the entire White Paper.

Experience hands-on leadership coaching, gain leadership certification, and strengthen your own resilience. Learn more or Register below.
(October 17-19, 2019 and May 14-16, 2020 | $2,500)

Managing a lot of change? Give your team the clarity they need

RL Practice of the Month
Managing a lot of change?
Give your team
the clarity they need

Resilient Leadership Clarity


The human brain craves certainty. When change efforts breed uncertainty, anxiety and reactivity escalates, as does the rumor mill. The emotional system begins to vibrate with greater and greater amounts of dissonance. Rumors become rampant and when passed around the emotional system often enough become confused with fact.



Ask yourself where your team needs more clarity from you. Then communicate clearly, consistently and often. Doing so will calm their anxiety and settle the rumor mill, which in turn will allow people to act more thoughtfully.

Try It:In the midst of a change, repeatedly share accurate information and facts.
Let team members know:

  • The “Why” of the change,
  • The “How” of the change, and
  • The “When” of the change.

And even when you don’t know all the facts about a change (either because they are still evolving or because they have yet to be shared with you) be transparent with your team. Tell them what you do know, what you don’t know, and commit to keeping them in the loop”.


Would you like to know more about leading with calm, clarity, and conviction?


Spend 3 days with us that you will never forget.

Enroll in our Resilient Leadership Coach Certification where you will work with a small number of colleagues to explore the emotional dynamics that surround all that you do at work, at home, …. everywhere. Our Certification Programs take place: October 17-19, 2019 and May 14-16, 2020.

Need more information?


A triangle goes toxic! Reposition yourself!

RL Practice of the Month
A triangle goes toxic!
Reposition yourself!

Fact:Triangles are the smallest stable unit in an emotional system. They are nature’s way of dealing with anxiety. They instinctively form in our social systems in order to establish more emotional safety when stress arises. We all have been there when a triangle “lights up”, often in unexpected ways and with unanticipated intensity. And it can happen in a split second.

  • A colleague at work comes out of the boss’s office fuming and makes a beeline to your desk. “You won’t believe what just happened…”.

Action:How we respond in this situation will either increase or reduce your ability to help calm down the triangle between yourself, the boss, and your colleague. Being resilient in this situation calls you to quickly see the increased reactivity in the triangle, recognize the part you can play to calm things down in the triangle, and take appropriate steps without taking sides.

Some suggestions are:

  1. Avoid feeling sorry for someone, blaming someone or offering solutions.
  2. Listen without judgement and then help your colleague clarify their thinking about what happened in the boss’s office.
  3. Avoid the “togetherness position” which means avoid commiserating or feeling responsible to help your colleague figure out how to patch things up with the boss.
  4. Work to keep communications open between your colleague and the boss.

Try It: This month be on the lookout for triangles around you which would really benefit from a reduction in tension. Think about actions you could take to lower the anxiety in these triangles and decide to take an “anxiety reducing” action. Look for signs of improvement as you practice: Staying Calm, Staying Connected and Staying the Course.


For more insight, please enjoy the videos below!

For more information, watch this video of Jim Moyer on transforming triangles!


For more information, watch this video of Jim Burns on transforming triangles!