Saturday, November 29, 2014

WHAT IS "DiSC" Anyway?

         What do a lie-detector machine, Wonder Woman and sales and management theory have in common? What they share is their creator William Moulton Marsten, a psychologist, 
inventor, polyamorist, & interdisciplinarily-educated researcher, imagineer & synergizer who has revolutionized the way society has learned to understand visceral interpersonal tensions and physical attraction impulses, at least within the DiSC matrix.

          Into the complex stew of modern behavioral science discoveries, Marston blended ancient medicinal concepts; i.e., wizened insights deep into a specific individual's personal temperament style. In 444 B.C. Empodocles first noticed temperament style differences. In 400 B.C.  Hippocrates verified the efficacy of Empodocles initial "earth, wind, fire  and water" 
personality observations.

          Marston's interest and findings into the emotions of normal people, at a time when the emerging mental illness commercial industry was just beginning to flourish, was overshadowed by Freud and Jung's banter and labeling of their nominalizations. In 1928 Marsten published his groundbreaking book, Emotions of Normal People.

         The first Diagnostic & Statistical Manual (DSM) of mental disorders diagnostic labels weren't based on any real, conclusive science but were simply voted on by via argument by a small group of self-interested doctors who were tasked with defining behavior patterns by assigning an insurable DSM label. This same circle of DSM planners alleged and assigned subconscious and unconscious motivations to others' subjective experience, based on the doctors' 'best guesses' at the time. 

          In 60's, the early days of organization development and  
based on Marston's exciting breakthroughs, Dr. John Geier created the first (paper version) DiSC self-profile, which has since been utilized globally by tens of millions of participants and a majority of leading, global organizations. 

         Wiley Publishing, a leader in college textbooks, through a serendipitous series of corporate purchases by leading training companies of other major, competitive industry giants, has inherited Dr. Geier's original line of DiSC research content and subsequent corporate application outcome studies. Today DiSC is recognized as the only such behavioral instrument to utilize adaptive technology to constantly create more accurate self-reports. A world-famous self-assessment instrument, the DiSC profile rates highly on overall validity and reliability scores.

          Since the early 80's, Frank DeDominicis has applied DiSC to his coaching and training services with amazing individual results. Self-knowledge is power. Frank & DiSC have served the reorganization of post-divestiture AT&T Communications, staff development for the United Way, accelerated lead flow and closings for Re/Max realtors, executives, independent business owners, entrepreneurs, and practitioners.  Frank's unique style is light-hearted and engaging, in a way that changes learning a seemingly complex epistemology into merely a personalized, interactive, fun dialogue.  (Review his client comments.)

         Today Marston's original work has evolved into a powerful system of self-assessment management instruments which have revolutionized what is currently considered best practices in sales, management and customer services. The DiSC people-reading technology course is a teachable system that boosts organizational overall productivity and customers' lifelong loyalty and referrals; proven in 2011 by Honda Motor Co., Inc.  

To profile yourself  or another person see:  

-Frank DeDominicis 11/19/14

Monday, November 10, 2014

Four Key Coping and Stress Skills

            Napoleon Hill suggested that everyone might benefit by annually taking a  fearless personal inventory, preferably over end-of-year holidays. He suggested that we reassess what we are becoming, what we've attracted, what we've spurned and what we generously and graciously given back to our communities.
            History is a great teacher, Professor Hindsight teaches us to learn how to recognize problems' warning flags and to how to re-navigate through or around them. Yet, through our "normal" default conditioning, we often naturally react to inter- and intrapersonal stressors via predictable, habitual behavior patterns within our personality temperament.
Four keys to treat interpersonal stressors:
                Problem-solving is most effective for those who can synergize ideas, create multiple solutions and color outside the usual lines of "normal.” A prevalent problem with problem-solving is that interpersonal problems can be complex, presenting multiple symptoms, some of which may be more emotionally distracting than the actual, practical core problem.
            To improve your problem-solving skills, first acknowledge that the emotional component of a problem is sometimes larger and more impactful on one's sensibilities  than the problem itself.  Emotional stress is traumatizing.  Therefore, we tend to first  focus our behavior on primarily relieving discomfort and distress of negative feelings. 
                A positive attitude suggests that although I expect problems to reveal themselves to me via negative feelings, that is merely a signal, an indication of a feeling that I really don't want; which then empowers me to choose the opposite feeling, the real win at the end of the storm, like success, triumph, overcoming or real love.          
                Communication - Besides our own self-talk, where else in our lives do we enjoy valued conversations with friends, family, lovers and mentors? Oratory is not just a skill but also a need. Good speakers are also good readers, good listeners and can be good team players.  Communication can affect both individuals and groups' collective flow with the potential to positively energize or negatively discourage and weaken others' resolve towards their dreams.   Therefore, please choose to consciously communicate or, as Ben Franklin said, "speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation."  
            Flexibility - Who do I think I am? What am I but a bundle of subatomic energy particles ultimately expressed in DNA hardware and software; merely a product of early experiences, observations of role models, attitudes, values and influences? What if, in confronting interpersonal problems, I am wrong in my personal heuristics? In a school of  Japanese psychotherapy "what if" serves as an highly effective re-framing tool in the  treatment of depression.  Reflect.  Ask yourself, "what if I'm totally wrong?"
            Closeness - The real question is not whether we need or desire closeness but to what degree and when. Closeness occurs when two opposite fears are in check: the fear of loss of love from someone and the fear of abandonment.  If you were abandoned as a kid, left alone in your room like Robin William who used his isolation to create imaginary characters and fictitious friends, then perhaps your conditioning necessarily attracts  similar experiences, within your painful but familiar emotional 'comfort' zone.
            A persistent, deeply rooted fear of abandonment may ultimately become self-fulfilling. The safety-seeking reasoning of such a person is, "Why risk involvement and attachment if a relationship begun can then just progress onwards as a relationship that eventually (as expected) crashes?" 
            Those who desire closeness ought observe and come to terms with their own natural need to bond with others versus a strong need for solo time alone to deepen oneself through reflection, meditation and other interests. Open dialogue with others about our emotional waves, our closeness fluctuations, may help comfort others' fears.
            These four interpersonal skills and their interactions is measured via a high validity/high reliability Wiley Publishing instrument called a "Coping and Stress" e-profile, available at "Longevity" presentations and at
Comments or questions: 323.543.5719.                               - Frank DeDominicis

Contact me for a copy of Hill's inventory.                            10  November  2014

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Thursday, August 7, 2014

The Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale
Understanding the Impact of Long-term Stress

Are you "burning the candle at both ends?"

People use the word "stress" to describe a wide variety of situations - from your cell phone ringing while you're talking on another phone - to the feelings associated with intense work overload, or the death of a loved-one.
But perhaps the most useful and widely accepted definition of stress (mainly attributed to Richard S. Lazarus) is this: Stress is a condition or feeling experienced when a person perceives that "demands exceed the personal and social resources the individual is able to mobilize." In less formal terms, we feel stressed when we feel that "things are out of control".
Our ability to cope with the demands upon us is key to our experience of stress. For example, starting a new job might be a wholly exciting experience if everything else in your life is stable and positive. But if you start a new job when you've just moved into a new house, or your partner is ill, or you're experiencing money problems, you might find it very hard to cope.
How much of this does it take to push you "over the edge"? Not all unusual events are equally hard to deal with. For example, compare the stress of divorce with that of a change in responsibilities at work. Because of this, you need to be able to rate and measure your total stress score appropriately.
The Social Readjustment Rating Scale (SRRS), more commonly known as the Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale, was created to do just that. This tool helps us measure the stress load we carry, and think about what we should do about it.
This article looks at the Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale, and explains how you can use it to manage the stress in your life.
The Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale
In 1967, psychiatrists Thomas Holmes and Richard Rahe decided to study whether or not stress contributes to illness. They surveyed more than 5,000 medical patients and asked them to say whether they had experience any of a series of 43 life events in the previous two years.
Each event, called a Life Change Unit (LCU), had a different "weight" for stress. The more events the patient added up, the higher the score. The higher the score, and the larger the weight of each event, the more likely the patient was to become ill.
The Stress Scale
To score your stress levels, simply check the box in the right hand column next to all the events that have happened to you in the last year. Your score will automatically update.
This table is taken from "The Social Readjustment Rating Scale", Thomas H. Holmes and Richard H. Rahe, Journal of Psychosomatic Research, Volume 11, Issue 2, August 1967, Pages 213-218, Copyright © 1967 Published by Elsevier Science Inc. All rights reserved. Permission to reproduce granted by the publisher.
This scale must not be used in any way to cause harm to an individual's professional career.
Top of Form
Life Event
Check if this applies
Death of spouse
Marital separation
Jail term
Death of close family member
Personal injury or illness
Fired at work
Marital reconciliation
Change in health of family member
Sex difficulties
Gain of new family member
Business readjustment
Change in financial state
Death of close friend
Change to a different line of work
Change in number of arguments with spouse
A large mortgage or loan
Foreclosure of mortgage or loan
Change in responsibilities at work
Son or daughter leaving home
Trouble with in-laws
Outstanding personal achievement
Spouse begins or stops work
Begin or end school/college
Change in living conditions
Revision of personal habits
Trouble with boss
Change in work hours or conditions
Change in residence
Change in school/college
Change in recreation
Change in church activities
Change in social activities
A moderate loan or mortgage
Change in sleeping habits
Change in number of family get-togethers
Change in eating habits
Minor violations of the law

Bottom of Form
Note: If you experienced the same event more than once, then to gain a more accurate total, add the score again for each extra occurrence of the event.
Score Interpretation
You have a high or very high risk of becoming ill in the near future.
You have a moderate to high chance of becoming ill in the near future.
You have only a low to moderate chance of becoming ill in the near future.
What You Can Do About This
If you find that you are at a moderate or high level of risk , then an obvious first thing to do is to try to avoid future life crises.
While this is clearly easier said than done, you can usually avoid moving house, for example, close to when you retire, or when one of your children goes off to college; you can learn conflict resolution skills   to minimize conflict with other people; you can avoid taking on new obligations or engaging with new programs of study; and you can take things easy, and look after yourself.
For more on reducing stress, visit the Stress Tools area of Mind Tools.
Note 1:
Some scientists have suggested that the Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale is weak in certain areas. For example, some feel that different cultural groups react differently to different life events.
One study compared scores of Americans with those of Malaysians. Interestingly, Malaysians had different attitudes toward breaking the law and toward relationships than the Americans did, meaning that their experience of stress was different at the same score.
Keep cultural differences in mind as you score your own life events.
Note 2:
While it's useful to know about this idea so that you can take action with it, don't dwell on it, and don't let this knowledge affect your mood. Think positively!  
Note 3:
Stress can cause severe health problems and, in extreme cases, can cause death. You should take the advice of a suitably qualified health professional if you have any concerns over stress-related illnesses, or if stress is causing you significant or persistent unhappiness.
Key Points
The Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale is a well-known tool for measuring the amount of stress you’ve experienced within the past year. Taking the test can help you see clearly if you’re at risk of illness due to stress.
Warning: Stress can cause severe health problems and, in extreme cases, can cause death. While these stress management techniques have been shown to have a positive effect on reducing stress, they are for guidance only, and readers should take the advice of suitably qualified health professionals if they have any concerns over stress-related illnesses or if stress is causing significant or persistent unhappiness. Health professionals should also be consulted before any major change in diet or levels of exercise.