Power with Heart News - May 2015
Right Use of Power Institute

Right Use of Power

power with heart news

May 2015

Dear <<First Name>>!

We are delighted and gratified to report that in our first few weeks of our fundraising campaign, we have raised $3,720 of our $10,000 goal!  It is exciting to watch the thermometer go up and to send out our thank you gifts! These funds will lift us from the day-to-day operations of a business to the next level of enacting our vision.  

Why should you consider supporting us financially? From the largest perspective, because as many people as possible need to understand power as the ability to have influence and then learn the skills, self-awareness and sensitivity to use their power with both strength and heart. 
If you'd like to donate now, you can see our fundraising campaign here and make your donation. We appreciate all the help we can get! 

We hope you will enjoy this issue of Power With Heart News.

Note: Try clicking "View it in your browser" link at the top of the email (above the header image). You will be able to translate the newsletter into various languages, share through Facebook, etc.

In this issue you will find:
  • Ethical Decision Making In Therapy by Cedar Barstow. Reading time - 5 minutes
  • Reminder about upcoming workshops
  • CE Credit Hours for Featured Ecourse: Ethical Decision Making
  • Teacher of the Month - Ellen Palme - Reading time - 2 minutes
  • Climate Change - by EDF. This is a welcome little piece about little seedlings of recognition and shift toward more right use of influence in regard to addressing climate change.  Reading time - 2 minutes. 
  • How Do We Develop High Character? by The Ethics Guy's Newsletter. You've seen stuff from "The Ethics Guy," Bruce Weinstein in the newsletter before.  Now Bruce has just finished a book about why character should be a high priority item for employers choosing employees. I've long advocated character, or moral compass, as a foundation for right uses of power. Reading time - 5 minutes. 
  • The Pledge. Take a minute to look at the Right Use of Power Pledge. - Make your own pledge to use your power wisely and well. Reading time 1 minute

Featured E-Course

Earn Continuing Education Credits from home! 

Ethical Decision Making
Take this e-course and find out more about ethical decision-making as coming from a combination of professional responsibility and personal integrity.  Practice thinking through some complex situations using the power spiral.

There are many CE E-Courses that you can browse online.

Workshops & Trainings

Boulder, Colorado

Right Use of Power Workshop:
July 25-26, 2015 (Saturday/Sunday)

Teacher's Training:
July 27-28, 2015

Presented by Cedar Barstow, M.Ed., C.H.T.

Click here for more information

Siler City, North Carolina

Right Use of Power
October 30, 2015

Presented by Julia Corley, LMBT, C.H.T.
Click here for more information

Reminder to Guild Members that you can re-take the training(s) for 50% discount at any time!  Great way to update your skills and increase your confidence. Just register and make the $100 deposit at

Teacher of the Month

Ellen Palme, 

I have had the opportunity since attending the RUP training last fall to offer Ethics/Right Use of Power trainings on several occasions. Twice it was within the agency I work with to 20+ participants, once was at the Addiction Professionals of North Carolina Conference with 40 people attending. The feedback was “best ethics training I have ever attended. Please come back.” For those of us professionals that are required to maintain a license, ethics is an on-going requirement and having the opportunity to attend experiential ethics training is refreshing. I am a certified clinical supervision in the addiction and mental health field and value the opportunity to create greater awareness with clinicians who are working with a very vulnerable population. I have three more trainings lined up this fall for our Area Health Education Centers in various parts of the state.  I am excited to be able to offer such a valuable and rewarding training.

How Do We Develop High Character?

The Ethics Guy's Newsletter (May 20, 2015)

Note from Cedar: You've seen stuff from "The Ethics Guy," Bruce Weinstein in the newsletter before.  Now Bruce has just finished a book about why character should be a high priority item for employers choosing employees.  I've long advocated character, or moral compass, as a foundation for right uses of power.  Read on.

Time, Practice, and Commitment
Character is developed over time, with consistent effort. Character development is similar to weight training. It takes several trips to the gym every week for months to build strength, and if you stop, your body returns to the way it used to be.

When I was writing my doctoral dissertation, I started lifting weights to help deal with the stress of the work. The first time I tried the bench press, I could hardly lift the bar even with no weights on it. Gradually I was able to lift more and more, until finally people started commenting on how strong my upper body looked. Sometime later I stopped weight training, and those bulging pecs returned to their normal, less impressive proportions.

By the same token, it takes constant effort to develop and sustain the traits associated with high character. In his book 10% Happier, the ABC News journalist Dan Harris talks about how hard he has had to work to develop patience and presence. An on-air meltdown prompted him to reevaluate the way he was living, and he discovered that developing a mindfulness meditation practice helped him to “neutralize the voice in the head,” as he puts it, and live more fully in the moment. Being present and resisting the urge to dwell on the past or future is something he works at — hard — every day. Some days go better than others, but overall, he notes, he is much nicer to be around and much less prone to lose his temper.

Recall the two co-workers we discussed last time, Mike and Joe.  Is it possible for Joe to develop the high-character traits that Mike already displays? Yes. With the right management and a willingness to  acknowledge his shortcomings, Joe may be able to change. But for this to happen, both Joe and his company would have to make an investment in him that one or both might not want to make. Yet if Joe doesn’t change and is promoted to a more responsible position, his problems may have profound consequences for the organization and the people it serves.

Smart companies seek to hire and promote high-character people like Mike for five reasons:

• They make coming to work a more agreeable experience for everyone, which is good for employee morale.

• They contribute significantly to the organization’s financial health by being highly productive and developing strong relationships with clients.

• They tend to be loyal to their employers. People like Mike stick around.

• They advance the company’s mission of enhancing people’s lives.

• They reflect well on the company, which is valuable for its own sake and also promotes positive word-of-mouth.

Assuming that Mike and Joe have the same knowledge and skills, Mike is the more desirable employee, because, at least at work, he is a person of greater character. Mike is one of the Good Ones. 


Ethical Decision-Making in Therapy

by Cedar Barstow

The power spiral is a guide to using role power wisely and well, and is of particular use to therapists. There are four aspects to the power spiral for use with ethical decision-making: gathering information, engaging compassion, resolving and repairing, and resourcing.

As a mental health professional, when you have any kind of ethical decision to make, consider the questions that guide you through the power spiral process. This process may also be helpful when you would like to harvest some learning by reflecting back on a decision or mistake you may have made.

Start by focusing your thoughts on the situation you want guidance on. Then imagine this situation in the center of a power spiral surrounded by the four aspects described next. Now imagine sitting in each of the directions of the spiral and consider questions such as the ones listed here. What insights emerge?

1. Gather Information: The Informed Use of Power
  • What does your code of ethics say about this issue?
  • What is the impact of the power differential?
  • What other objective information is relevant?
2. Engage Compassion: The Conscious Use of Power
  • How does this issue affect you personally?
  • Is shame de-resourcing either you, the person you’re working with in therapy, or both?
  • What kind of transference or countertransference may be operating?
3. Prevent or Repair Harm: The Caring Use of Power

Some ethical decisions are involved with how to be in service to the person you’re working with and prevent harm, while others are related to how to resolve difficulties and repair harm.

Read the rest of the article here.

Climate Change

Environmental Defense Fund

For years, it has felt like most of Washington has been burying their heads in the sand, ignoring the climate problem even as evidence mounts and dire predictions become reality. But this week, it became undeniably clear that the tide is turning.

It started Monday, as Senator Whitehouse—a longtime, tireless advocate for climate action—gave his 100th weekly climate speech on the Senate floor. Knowing that "opponents of responsible climate action do best in the dark," Whitehouse dedicated himself to pulling the Senate into the light:

"Time and time again, we hear, 'I'm not a scientist' from politicians refusing to acknowledge the evidence. We're not elected to be scientists. We're elected to listen to them."

But he's not alone in shedding light on the problem. Secretary of State Kerry's recent trip to Asia focused on the nuclear threat of North Korea and violent extremism around the world—and climate couldn't be left out of the conversation:

"It's time to put aside discredited scientific arguments and to focus on the facts, not just for our health and the health of our children, but for our planet's security as well," explained Kerry upon his return.

Today, President Obama continued that conversation, highlighting the national security threat climate change poses in his commencement address at the Coast Guard Academy:

"Climate change constitutes a serious threat to global security, an immediate risk to our national security, and make no mistake, it will impact how our military defends our country. And so we need to act—and we need to act now... In Miami and Charleston, streets now flood at high tide. Along our coasts, thousands of miles of highways, roads, railways and energy facilities are vulnerable. It's estimated that a further increase in sea level of one foot—just one foot—by the end of this century could cost our nation $200 billion."

Read the rest of the newsletter here.

Quote of the Month

"Always try to do the right thing. It will confound some and gratify the rest." 
 - Mark Twain

The Pledge

As a part of our fundraising campaign we wanted to give everyone a chance to sign a pledge to use their power wisely and well. Everyone who donates (any amount) will receive this beautiful pledge card. (We have other gifts available as well. Check them out on our fundraising page.). 

Here is the pledge:

"I pledge to use my personal and professional power with strength and heart. I will endeavor to stay connected, accountable, sensitive and skillful. I know that my right uses of power will help prevent and repair harm, resolve conflict and promote well being."

To make your pledge, go to our website fundraising page.
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