Illustrated Blog


Talk Your Way Into a Greater Ingroup. Mention to your work connections what you have in common with them (use list from last week’s tip). “You and I have new supervisors we have not met in person. How’s that going for you?” for example. Now BOTH of you are more likely to benefit from a bigger ingroup.

Purposeful Palm series: Talk your way into a greater ingroup

The above tip from the Purposeful Palm outside my office window builds on last week’s tip. Last week it suggested we reflect on the similarities we have with those we work with. As you see, this week it suggests we go one step further. If you haven’t already, please review last week’s post to understand why the Palm’s tip is so transformative.

Think Your Way to a Greater Ingroup. When you plan your workday, list the individuals with whom you will meet and one thing you have in common with each-college kids at home, a recent promotion or a love for surfing, for example.

Purposeful Palm series: Think your way to a greater ingroup

The Purposeful Palm’s advice might seem frivolous, but repositioning how we think of others could very well improve our relationships. It can bring people who aren’t in our ingroup, which consists of those who give us a sense of belonging and we are inclined to support, into it. Research has discovered, for example, that after fans of professional soccer teams reflected on why they enjoyed being fans of a certain team, they were unlikely to stop and help someone they thought was an injured fan of the rival team (it was really an actor wearing a rival team’s jersey). Only 30% helped. But after fans reflected on loving soccer, something they had in common with the fans of the rival team, 70% helped the injured fan of the rival team. The bottom line is that focusing on similarities appears to

#6: Work less for democracy. Whatever work you plan to do over the next month, do less of it and do more for democracy. Why not take vacation on November 3 to staff a poll site or spend Fridays on phone banks instead of sales calls? The saddest words in every language are “If only I had…” Let’s ensure we aren’t saying this to each other in 2O21 or to our children in 2O31.

Purposeful Palm series: Work less for democracy

When I gazed at the palm outside my office window searching for inspiration, it offered the above advice. Together we can ensure that all Americans with the right to vote have a safe opportunity to do so. Here are several organizations that offer volunteer opportunities to support a fair and peaceful election, including from wherever we are sheltered in place: Civic Alliance, a non-partisan group of businesses building a future where everyone participates in shaping our country, has opportunities for businesses large and small to do good. Join Target, Kenneth Cole, SAP, HandsOn Connect and hundreds of other businesses. Frontline Election Defenders, an alliance of progressive organizations such as the Working Families Party and the Movement for Black Lives, has an Election Defenders campaign with several roles we can play on election

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Purposeful Palm series: Buy good

As you might remember, last week’s tip for a meaningful workweek from the Purposeful Palm was to forgo meat. My favorite reader response was from Ernesto: “No way, Bea. I love parrilla [bar-b-q]! Try to get your little plant to give me some other advice.” After the Palm stopped chuckling, it agreed to stay away from suggesting a culinary sacrifice this week. Thus, the above tip on something close to the opposite: Shopping! Here are resources to help you find black-owned businesses: The Buy From A Black Woman Directory New York Magazine’s 180 Black-Owned Businesses to Support The Black-Owned Market Etsy’s Black Owned Shops  Black Enterprise’s Top 100 list  Bank Black Bon Appetit’s list of Black-owned Restaurants  A list of 181 Black-owned businesses across the United States in many different

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Purposeful Palm series: Shine the limelight on others

When I stared at the Purposeful Palm outside my office window this week, it suggested we help with the other pandemic afflicting us: social isolation. In our work-at-home reality, many of our colleagues feel as though they have faded into the background, neither heard nor seen. The resulting loneliness can be crippling. The above tip can help reduce their suffering. Amazingly, research shows that if we are the ones suffering from social isolation, doing this good deed helps us as well.

Drawing of a palm tree with this message: Look through your work contacts/emails for someone who has been supportive, upbeat, hardworking or otherwise great. Write them a 1-3 sentence thank-you email. Set a reminder to repeat this exercise in 2 days. On the second round, thank someone who has a different racial background from yours. Finally, reflect on and relish your acts of social purpose!

Purposeful Palm series: Gain meaning through gratitude

I spend a lot of time gazing out my office window at a palm tree wondering how to ignite a sense of purpose in whatever work team I’m trying to help. It turns out the tall palm often has surprisingly helpful, simple and broadly applicable ideas. Above is one. The Purposeful Palm’s first tip might take no more than five minutes and be ridiculously simple but make no mistake: It will bring more joy to its beneficiaries than we likely know. Furthermore, there is evidence that it’s sufficiently meaningful to boost the happiness of those doing the good deed—for days or even weeks!