Today’s Topics: Gift Giving | Today’s Christmas Deal | Shoe Covers | What is Right? Part 2 | News to Start Your Day
December 15th is National Cupcake Day & Bill of Rights Day! Exercise your right to a cupcake today!
Today we received an unexpected gift from a vendor, and I just have to share it with you guys. This vendor often sends us little gifts for everyone in the family at Christmas, including our girls. This year he included a special gift – a 3D model/re-creation of one of our family pictures. It is so cool!
Here is the original picture from 2018 and a picture of the 3D model he sent. We all love it!
His gift made me think about the art of gift giving. I absolutely LOVE to give gifts. I enjoy thinking about what someone else would like and buying them something they (usually) wouldn’t buy for themselves. This little 3D model is a great example of that. I would’ve never bought this for our home, because I didn’t even know such a product existed. Thoughtful gifts can make people feel a variety of positive emotions – appreciated, seen or heard, loved – and it can bring great joy to the gift giver.
Do you have the gift of gift giving? If you do, please don’t be afraid to exercise it. The amount you spend isn’t important. By being thoughtful towards others you never know who you will touch in a special way when they need it most. So, whatever your gift is, exercise it well. If you haven’t read it already, check out The Five Love Languages for a breakdown of several (well, five actually) ways we speak love to one another. Knowing your language and the language of those closest to you will serve you well.
So that’s my encouragement for the day: Don’t be afraid to show love. We could all use a little more of it in this crazy world and in these crazy times.
Product Spotlights & Updates from Rebecca:
It’s time for Deal 6 in our 12 Deals of Christmas!
Today’s deal is an awesome HP GL360 Generation 8 Server! This Server comes with (2) Intel E52630 processors, 64GB RAM, and (6) 300GB Hard Drives! This 1RU server was specifically designed for server rooms where space is a concern. It features smart power and cooling management and comes equipped with fault tolerance! Further, it includes redundant fans, power supplies, and mirrored memory!
Best of all, when you purchase your server through CablesAndKits, it comes with an Advanced Lifetime Replacement Warranty at no additional cost!
Have you checked out our Shoe Covers!?
These shoe covers are Blue Polypropylene and are Non-Skid and Anti-Static making them perfect for any job!
Also, don’t forget about the FREE SHIPPING code PPESHIP
What is Right? Part 2 (Decision Framework) – Gary, our Chief Administrative Steward
Part 1 in this ”What is Right?” series mapped out seven different decision filters we can selectively use when confronted with a choice. Those filters serve as tools in our mental decision kit. However, like most tools they produce the most effective results when applied by a skilled craftsman within the framework of a process. For example, it does little good to smoothly sand and finish pieces of wood before cutting and shaping the individual pieces into their final forms and assembling those pieces into the final product.
What process might we apply to making choices? The following five critical questions help us apply the seven decision filters (authoritative, aligned, aimed, available, attentive, acceptable, and appropriate) in a logical manner. Disclaimer: I do not intend for the following process framework to fit all situations or all seasons. For the purpose of this post we will focus on choices that fit under the umbrella of “What is the right thing to do?”
- Is there an authoritative principle of natural law in play?
Natural laws apply to all people in all situations for all time. These natural laws are written on our hearts, and our own conscience acts as a witness; either condemning or defending the alignment of our behavior with those natural laws. We can squelch or cultivate our conscience, but natural laws stand inviolable. Consequently, everything starts here. On a related side note, the whole concept of civil disobedience collapses as vacuous nonsense unless certain authoritative principles trump all else.
- What prior commitment(s), if any, affect(s) my choice?
Commitments of belonging …Groups of people who have voluntarily chosen to align for a common purpose; whether they be countries, companies, clubs or communities (beginning with marriages and expanding outward), often create written and unwritten policies to govern the behavior of group members. Those policies describe “what is right” for inclusion in the group. As such, when I choose to join any group I essentially commit to conform my behavior to that group’s policies.
Several years ago, Todd Gurley, then a running back for the University of Georgia, allegedly signed his name to certain memorabilia items in exchange for compensation. That event provides a great example of the interplay between these first two steps in the decision framework.
Some argue that the NCAA’s policy prohibiting a player from financially capitalizing on their own image while doing the same for itself is not right. I happen to believe this argument has some merit; nonetheless, by voluntarily joining an organization aligned with the NCAA, Gurley effectively placed himself under the authoritative policies governing behavior in that organization.
When the NCAA determined his behavior violated their policy, Gurley got barred from playing for several games. Gurley’s situation reinforces the point that even when our behavior aligns with natural law, we may still find ourselves subjected to penalties, social ridicule, adverse financial damage, or, in extreme cases, risk of physical harm.
Commitments of action … One of my early mentors, Luther Boggs, made a statement which has stuck with me for decades. “A commitment is not a commitment, unless you are prepared to personally sacrifice to keep it.” Our lives are more productive and less stressful when we honor our commitments (one of CablesAndKits’ core values).
- What choice most aligns with my life purpose and goals?
Some might argue that this question should come second, but I contend it rightfully falls here. Choosing what is right does not allow us to abrogate prior commitments merely because we define a new goal. For example, a husband or wife should not walk out on their family to chase a new dream.
Absent the guiding presence of a personal mission statement, you cannot really answer this question. You will especially struggle to determine your availability and decide what invitations to decline. So, if have not yet created a personal mission statement or captured written goals for major roles and responsibilities in your life, I encourage you to do so.
- What Relationships could impact or be impacted by my choice?
As an engineer by education, great ideas grab my attention. However, life experience has taught me that absent relationships even the best ideas die quickly or go nowhere. Why? Great ideas require a diversity of skills and a depth of complexity over which no single individual can hope to have mastery. Relationships help us foresee issues that would otherwise trip us up. Relationships expand our minds and hearts to possibilities we would otherwise ignore. Relationships solve problems that would otherwise stymie progress. Relationships tap into resources without which a great idea would otherwise starve. Relationships lend us courage without which we might otherwise succumb to fear and doubt. Relationships leverage the power of shared passion without which we would otherwise give up.
- What is Reality?
Before we forge ahead into any new endeavor we must frankly confront reality. Do the numbers and other assumptions make sense? Test the math. Does the desired objective rely upon outcomes aligned (or wholly at odds) with historical norms? Bottom line…We must count the cost.
In Part 4 of this series, we will take this What is Right? process and apply it to a practical situation that is confronting or will eventually confront readers of this daily email.
One parting thought… Once past those five decision gates we are beyond principles and priorities and into the arena of preference where demanding our own way is likely just selfishness and deference should typically hold sway. Into this space apply the decision filters of attentiveness to the needs of others, responding to the appropriateness of the situation and choosing to behave in a manner acceptable to the sensitivity of others.
Part 3 of this What is Right? series will discuss the Binary Decision Trap.
Today’s News to Start Your Day:
- As of this morning, there are 20,224,200 active cases worldwide, with 1,630,878 deaths. In the US, there are 6,758,000 active cases, with 308,091 deaths.
- Federal officials said they expect 20 million Americans to get the first of two required vaccine doses by the end of the year.
- Scientists in Europe have found that certain gene variants are linked to severe covid-19 infections, suggesting that genetic makeup plays a role in why some patients experience worse symptoms than others.
- Coronavirus infections increased in London during the final weeks of a nationwide lockdown, for reasons that aren’t entirely clear, researchers said Tuesday — a potentially frustrating development that comes as other European nations like Germany and the Netherlands impose strict new rules for the Christmas season.
- Amazon’s Halo wearable is now available for anyone to purchase, the company announced Monday. The Halo is a health and fitness tracker that comes with a subscription service and smartphone app. Users can track their body fat percentages, activity levels and their emotional state, using a feature called “Tone.”
- Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai sent an email to employees extending their work-from-home period to next September 1. However, the company says employees should live within a commuting distance to their assigned office, where they are expected to show up three days a week, according to a Q&A viewed by CNBC. This stands in contrast to some other tech companies, like Facebook and Twitter, who have said employees can live remotely and telecommute permanently.
- Apple’s Siri assistant can now quack like a duck if you ask it nicely. To try it out, users have to update to iOS 14.3, the newest version of the iPhone operating system, and say, “Hey Siri, what does a duck sound like?” On Monday, Siri started to play short audio clips in response to questions about what something sounds like and Apple says there are hundreds of options.