Category Archives: Relationships

Learning social and emotional skills is hard but worth it

on May 9, 2017 in Choosing/Decision-Making, Exercises, Leadership, Relationships

Ultimately all the advice in the world leads to one simple starting point: You have to act, practice, and rehearse new skills to get their benefit and those first acts, as with any new skill, will be clumsy, embarrassing, and full of other challenges that will lead the novice to feel bad. If you try, you will fail and feel bad, worse than if you never tried, but if you[…] Keep reading →

Love, work, commitment, and anxiety

on May 4, 2017 in Awareness, Relationships

Have you ever loved a job or person without the love resulting in more work and commitment? Did the work lead to loving it, him, or her more? But did feeling that you’d have to work more stopped you, often unconsciously, from allowing yourself to love something or someone? Do we move away from passions for the reasons we should move toward them? I call the feeling driving that inhibition,[…] Keep reading →

The value of technique: My student connects with a billionaire and gets invited to Harvard using skills from the course!

on April 27, 2017 in Education, Entrepreneurship, Relationships, Stories

I was delighted to read the email below from a former student. You can tell that English is not her native language, nor is America her native culture. Yet you’ll see she turned a standard business meeting assigned to her into a meaningful connection. That’s the value of technique: it works even when you wouldn’t know what to do. You can fall back on it. The more you practice and[…] Keep reading →

High praise no one would have told me before

on April 15, 2017 in Exercises, Relationships

The host of a podcast we just recorded emailed: Again, I so enjoyed our conversation today. Thank you for bring your whole self to the table. … I loved it. (and I know my audience will love it too.) I never used to hear that I brought my whole self to anything. On the contrary, as I’ll share below, I spent the first few decades of my life only able[…] Keep reading →

How “Relationship Goals” Might Be Ruining Your Relationship:

on March 20, 2017 in Relationships

Leadership is about more than business and politics, where people associate it most. Leadership applies to all relationships, including with yourself, to family, school, and significant others. Especially the kind of leadership that my book, Leadership Step by Step, develops: based on understanding, empathy, compassion, listening, connecting their passions to the team, teamwork, support, and similar social and emotional skills. is more for the next generation, but they caught[…] Keep reading →

Becoming The Person Others Follow: the Art of Authenticity awesome second interview!

on February 14, 2017 in Leadership, Relationships

Laura Coe, host of The Art of Authenticity podcast, posted today our second interview, “Joshua Spodek: Becoming The Person Others Follow,” which covers Leadership Step by Step, along with authenticity in general. Laura is a wonderful interviewer who genuinely cares about her guests. A second interview means more familiarity and comfort, which means covering perspectives and details beyond what a first interview can cover. Listen to the interview! (scroll down)[…] Keep reading →

Is leading with empathy and compassion soft? Will you get taken advantage of?

on February 11, 2017 in Leadership, Relationships, Tips

A reader wrote with some questions common enough from other readers to share. His second message is the common one. The first sets the context of dealing with a difficult person. Here’s the first message: I’d like to know how to deal with the type who is indifferent to the possible adverse repercussions for his actions (or lack thereof) and may actually want to deliberately trigger you to intervene and[…] Keep reading →