Ever Widening Circles Part II: Gratitude Economy

August 12, 2021 | | 1 Comment

Ever Widening Circles

Dr. Lynda Ulrich opens the conversation with thoughts moving away from the autopilot of intellectual laziness, and continues to dive into attention economy, gratitude economy, and value-driven consumers. Lynda is the founder of the media platform Ever Widening Circles and the Conspiracy of Goodness Network, which brings together a new world of possibilities by connecting co-conspirators and goodies. She is returning on the People Helping People Podcast for part 2 for an insightful conversation on gratitude economy. 

Firstly, Lynda believes that each person in those world is here to make a very unique contribution. Valuing this thought influences how Lynda approaches curiosity, mind shifts, and recognizing goodness. She says using the phrase “the conspiracy of goodness”, comes from these pockets of good being  well hidden among the negative content crowding mainstream media. I recommend checking out the TED talk Lynda gave on the topic. There is actually much good to discover; we may not see it since we’re not tapped into that, and other things we’re searching come to us more frequently.

Attention economy became the game that’s played through media, from the beginning earliest form up until now. Lynda explains the connection between media being structured as a triggering force. Lately, she noticed more people are being more thoughtful of where they place their attention. Society is experiencing a change in a positive direction from a time when only the craziest stunts caught attention. Lynda thinks people are starting to notice the tactics that are pushing narratives by using fear.

Lynda gives her observation on how we’re scanning the world at all times now for who can help us survive and thrive. That search and leaning into goodness combined to spark the emerging gratitude economy. Moving into the world of gratitude economy includes actions such as celebrating the people you do business with in your life that you’re super grateful towards. In other words, the emphasis is on reflecting back your gratitude for everything that the people around you are doing to support your own life, even if you’re simply paying for a service.

Gratitude economy is growing into a larger movement attached to people identifying as value-driven consumers. Lynda explains that people are spending their money with corporations that make them feel grateful. 

Being aware and doing more research about the values that a company espouses and lives up to is well-adopted in the current society. Today’s transactions have less to do with getting the lowest price or the cheapest or the most for your money. Lynda explains that the definition of what a good deal is may be changing, and becoming whether a good deal is something that has a positive impact for the greater good. 

Not only are consumers focusing on matched-values, talent search for matched-values when applying to companies. Lynda describes conversations, observations, and solutions of companies looking to retain talent in the gratitude economy.

You can listen to the previous episode with Dr. Lynda Ulrich.

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Read Full Transcript

[00:00:00] Adam: Welcome to People Helping People, the podcast inspire greater social change and give you ideas on how to take action. I'm your host, Adam Morris. Returning to us today is Dr. Lynda Ulrich founder of the media platform Ever Widening Circles and the Conspiracy of Goodness Network, which brings together a new world of possibilities by connecting co-conspirators and goodness. In our last podcast together, she shared the four shifts that we can take in order to see this new world, which is unfolding, including the power of the pause. She returns today to address a teaser should dropped it in our last episode about the gratitude economy and some delightful new ways that people are interacting.

So Dr. Lynda Ulrich welcome on the podcast.

[00:00:43] Lynda: Hey, I'm so glad to be back. We had such a great time.

[00:00:47] Adam: I loved it. Before we dive in, can you just give us a little background about Ever Widening Circles to anyone who hasn't yet gone back and listened to that episode?

[00:00:56] Lynda: Yeah. I actually spent 25 years being a dentist. I still am. And how that relates to becoming a global positive media mogul, which was my moniker given to me at the last TEDx event I spoke for. My field allowed me to get to know personally, cause I really took my work personally that thousands of people and how they were thinking and what they cared about and what they were fearful of.

And over the years of after 2010, 11, 12, 13, wow. I started to really notice that my patients were starting to have a future fatalism. A sense that the negative news and what was going on in, in social media just pointed to the horrifying future for us, all people are known as chipper. All their lives were starting to, go in those downward spiral conversations so easily.

I have a strange, very strange and wonderful background that I've lived abroad twice. I'm I have an Irish citizenship. I'm an artist, my whole life crazy artists. I do giant metal sculptures.

[00:02:04] Adam: Wow.

[00:02:05] Lynda: Junk and junk card stuff. And I've been a writer all my life and some of the by most people's standards.

I'm naturally curious about everything. So that combination that I believe, and I don't say any of those things with any pride, it's just my whole personal alchemy and you have yours and every single person listening to this podcast has theirs. And I truly believe that we are all built to contribute something unique.

[00:02:40] Adam: I would just love to hear your take on curiosity a bit, because that seems to feed so much and, especially if there's anything people can do to, expand their Curiosity

[00:02:50] Lynda: So I think curiosity ties into what I, the sentence I just said, I believe we're all built to contribute something very precious and unique to others. And that might mean one person that might mean the environment that might mean whatever we are uniquely built to contribute. And human beings have been doing that for thousands of years.

Okay. So where curiosity falls in there is we are noticing at Ever-widening circles and all our platforms of the interaction we have. And what we see in social media, in the news is that more and more people every day are looking for their calling. Because this the thing we're all curious about something. And I believe that if we look at what we're curious about, not like morbid curiosity, we all tend to want to look at a car accident, but those things that make us probe deeper and we go down rabbit holes with a sense of wonder, not like more, not morbid curiosity but wonder that's probably going to lead to your calling.

That's probably going to be something that, that you know, more about than most people or that you have this capability of putting things together that nobody thought to connect. And so that's that's when there I was with all my little gathering of life, experiences and skills, when I started to see my patients' attitudes going way down, right down the tubes. And I guess I was an early adopter of technology. I was fixing teeth with computers in 2003. So I guess that qualifies, I wrote my own website with 300 pages in 2004.

[00:04:35] Adam: Definitely.

[00:04:36] Lynda: So with that combination, I thought one day I just snapped.. I had a young boy who I'd known since he was a toddler, write me from a foxhole in a very dreadful place in the world. Very depressed about the news and what he was seeing about back home from social media. And he turned to me because I had always found something to celebrate in my patients' lives. That was my little, the one thing I could do, I could fix their tooth or fix whatever's and I could leave them with something to celebrate. So he gets to me and I went on a mad search, the internet to find someplace to refer him with no politics and no adds. Someplace anyone of any generation could get a sense of hope and learn about insight and innovation. That's not being celebrated on the, in the news.

And lo and behold, there was nothing

[00:05:30] Adam: It's a big internet and still nothing.

[00:05:33] Lynda: I searched for it. I'm a tech kind of nerd at no, I could not find any place on the internet for signs of goodness and progress without politics, without an agenda. To either sell us something or sell us on an idea. And so I snapped one day and I started it. I started ever-widening circles.com.

The name comes from a poem by Rilke's poem called Widening Circles. Check it out. It's a beautiful poem about how we are sometimes a storm, sometimes a Falcon and sometimes a great song.

So I began this curation of the internet for good news and insight and innovation, not puppies and mailboxes and stuff, but, Damien Mander, who's made the biggest leap in conservation in a hundred years, by figuring out that single mothers make the best game wardens in Africa, that is such a story.

How about Tofor White has discovered we can save their, all the remaining rainforest with old cell phones. I could go on and on. There is so much goodness and progress happening. And that's how I come to talk to you. You and I both discovered a wonderful thought leader named Dr. Srikumar Rao at the Rao Institute.

RAO and I think if you come away from Srikumar with anything, you come a way with this notion of good thing, bad thing. And you don't try and frame up every disappointment as a loss, but an opportunity.

[00:07:08] Adam: That's so powerful.

[00:07:09] Lynda: Yes, it's really something. And so along the way my team. Now, I have a big team. Nine nine of us are curating the internet for signs of goodness and progress. And I'm here to tell you there is an enormous wave of and progress going on in the world that no one knows.

And if you want to know a little bit more about we call that the conspiracy of goodness, because it's so well hidden by the negative knives.

And if you want to know a little bit about that I did a Ted talk by that name, exposing the conspiracy of goodness. And it'll put a spring in your step, at least that's what I'm saying.

[00:07:49] Adam: If you're listening to this, I recommend going and checking that out because it's interesting how much good stuff is out there and we just don't see it because we're not tapped into that and we're searching for other things. And so other things come to us.

[00:08:05] Lynda: It's a combination of the things we talked about in the last podcast interview, I talked about these four tricks that I've given people that they can do four shifts, simple shifts, little simple things for that we can all do in our daily lives.

When we're online, rather than going on autopilot, you go with these four little tiny shifts and you'll see the same world I do. I have huge loss and disappointment and grief in my life, just like other people. But I just see the world of possibility in a vision of the future. That's entirely different because my online view is so different because I manage my algorithms so carefully.

I'm not sure I said it on that last interview, but I don't discourage people from listening or watching the news. You're talking a lot about entrepreneurship and business. It is critical that people who are putting their business on the line know about the wider world, I get kinda, you think I would be somebody who would rail against the news, but.

I'm railing against autopilot. I'm railing against our own intellectual laziness. I want to do that too. Oh gosh. I worked 16 hour days every day and I want to just, go on autopilot, but not in my online life and not where it comes to the news. I have my two routines and I figure that anything really important that would change my business decisions or. What I recommend to my kids or friends or whatever will get to me with this routine. And it takes me 14 minutes to drive into my office. So I listened to NPR for those 14 minutes. And then it takes me 14 minutes to drive back. And I listened to the BBC for the world in that 14 minutes. And anything that's really critical is going to float into my world somewhere.

And then that's it. I just figure, I there's so little that I can personally affect in all the constant repetition and negative noise that the news brings us often and because they never shine a light on anything positive, never.

[00:10:16] Adam: Okay.

[00:10:16] Lynda: And that's why that's what I do is shine a light on things that are positive.

I can't trust them with my emotions. We have to really look at our online life. And our incoming curate our incoming, because if you don't, you are trusting your emotional life to people who are making money off of triggering our worst impulses.

[00:10:42] Adam: In the last podcast, we talked a bit about how, it's only a reflection of our natural desires. We spoke about some of the responses of the amygdala that just, gets heightened when there's some danger or some tragedy. And that's one reason why negative news sells really well, whereas positive news doesn't.

[00:11:03] Lynda: Nobody gave us an owner's manual when the internet was invented or for that matter when 24 7 news. It wasn't always like that. We just had the news from six o'clock to six 30 and it was Walter con he wasn't trying to sell us on any notions. He was just telling us what happened today. But now we have these other creations, the 24 hour news cycle, which has to be fed constantly. And then the online dilemma that we're in with that. And I just say don't go there. And lead with your amygdala because you will absolutely positively think the world is going to heck in a hand basket and that is guaranteed because the internet was foundationally built on capturing and holding our attention.

That's the only thing that matters. Our conversation is sliding towards something though that I started noticing in 2014, when I started the website at Ever-widening Circles, now we have As Adam mentioned many platforms, we have a social media network.

We said, okay, forget it. The big four. They're just all the crappy people are there. All the people who think they can say anything thoughtlessly. And unhelpfully we started the Conspiracy of Goodness Network, a social platform, the social media platform, where people who are kind and good intention and whatever can find themselves and find each other and feel us as a community.

[00:12:30] Adam: Until way for people to actually connect them the

[00:12:32] Lynda: Yes. Yes. In a space that's safe that has rules and has a culture. It how about that?

But along the way, I noticed watching all these thought leaders that we write about watching all the people interact with our content, talking to people like you and Dr. Rao and all these other thought leaders. I've noticed that we're starting to look for the helpers. That out in the world many of us are just turning our backs on the on what I'm calling the chaos builders.

We're starting to notice that people who trigger our worst impulses are our worst enemies. We need to invite people in our lives.

We're starting to notice and gravitate. Part of this was the pandemic. All this was going on before, but the pandemic really gave us time to pause and look at the people who made us feel like we could do more than survive.

We started to notice who those people were, who seemed more thoughtful. Helpful and measure. We started to appreciate some measured voices, instead of the people that are just doing the craziest things to get our attention. And if I try and go up to the a hundred thousand foot, look on this, you could say that what we've been doing for the last 100 years since the invention of radio,

yeah. You could call that the attention economy,

Because radio was really the first medium that could capture the attention of millions in whatever way they saw fit and then use neuroscience. And they were, but even back then too, to hold our attention. And here we are today with radio going to TV and TV, going to our online lives and so forth.

And still the game is still the same. Capture by any means and hold our attention. But

[00:14:26] Adam: continued to refine itself and become more effective at that.

[00:14:30] Lynda: I recommend to people to watch the Netflix documentary, the Social Dilemma. It's not more doom and gloom. It's actually very well done. But if you had any notions about any of us being, not susceptible to what's going on there, lots of social dilemma you'll know the game being played with your hearts and minds, and you will, you'll go to the internet with purpose from there now.

So anyway, I started noticing that this attention economy wasn't working for a lot of people. I learned to discipline myself. I do not see the world that other people see on social media. I will not click on anything that I know that you can tell from a mile away is not good.

And well-intended

[00:15:11] Adam: And you know it in your gut when you see it.

[00:15:14] Lynda: Yes, you know it and we're built like that. And that's another thing to trust is that, back in 40,000 years ago, during the stone age, we had to be able to recognize across a ravine, a stranger. We traveled the planet and bands of 15 to 30 people. And we came across this stranger.

We had to recognize whether they had good intention or bad from mile away. And I believe we have antenna for that.

And I believe it works on the internet as well. I have a real sense about someone's thoughtfulness or their agenda one way or the other on social media. And maybe it's because I've just practiced it for so long that what I noticed is other people telling me the same thing is that more and more people were starting to unfollow influencers that left them with a bad feeling in their gut, the pit of their stomach, Even if it's on your team after a while you start to listen what your team is saying about the other team.

And that there seems to be so much malice. And I don't know that many people who really say, oh, I want more malice

[00:16:16] Adam: Or things that involve scarcity or needing to get ahead. There's a different feel when somebody is genuine and open and collaborative and there to lift up everybody collectively.

[00:16:28] Lynda: And I think we're starting to notice the people who are preying on our fears.

I always like to say, when I'm open to anything, man, I can say, you've got a point there to almost anybody if they make a good case, but I will not say it.

If they shoot over to fear real quick, if someone trying to convince me of their notions and they shoot over to fear or scarcity really quick. To me, it just says you don't have that. You don't have any facts to tell me that might sway me to know your view is the right way to go. So you try and scare me into believing and it doesn't make sense.

I'm not going there with my amygdala leading on trying to be critical. And I started noticing more and more people doing that. And then what they were doing next was they were rewarding. The people that they were grateful for in their lives as consumers, you have a choice of two groups, two dry-cleaners equal.

This is from your house. You go to the one that knows your name. You go to the folks that are in that you say, oh, they're so super nice. You go to the one that, tell you the truth. When you borrowed that dress and got a really bad stain on it. Okay. They have to tell you the hard truth, but they're like a trusted advisor in your life.

Because you've got a relationship and they're going the extra mile for you all the time. So when you need them to tell you the truth of that, the dress on the stain that they're looking out for your best

[00:18:00] Adam: There's something about that going the extra mile where it's not just. A self centered. Okay. I'm going to go the extra mile in order to get your business, but there's people who genuinely are there and they're doing it from a standpoint of yeah, I'm doing my best for you. And they're making their contribution to the world and that's lifting it up as opposed to trying to get something from that interaction.

[00:18:25] Lynda: AB, absolutely. That is the bottom line. And back to our antenna, have you ever tried to convince like a 13 year old boy to do something? You're trying to use a little psychology or anything like that. No way teenagers, young teenagers, they have such antenna for BS. It's not even funny.

And that's how we all used to be. I believe we, and we had to be 40,000 years ago. Again, it's served us to be critical thinkers and to not just believe the first thing we heard of or believe what we saw or what we hoped to hear about that. There'd be berries around that hill. So I started really noticing that there was this movement of people doing exactly what you're saying.

They were giving themselves over in their working lives to just doing the right thing and being nice and deeply caring. They've refused to go through the motions. And, there was something going on in society then that I started to notice more and more people rewarding that by either, celebrating some great thing, the great service they had in a restaurant on Facebook, or, in my own dental practice at that time It's still like this, we get more referrals.

We always ask people when they're calling us new patients. So how did you, what brings you to our practice? And we get people all the time say, oh, my friend has referred me and we meet, we say, oh who can we thank? And they say, oh, they don't go to you. They're just running around telling everybody at the plant that they, that people should go to you.

[00:20:07] Adam: pretty amazing.

[00:20:09] Lynda: That is what I call the gratitude economy and it's happening all over the planet. We can all see someone going, just going through the motions a mile away too. And we recognize the people who can help us thrive.

This is what we're doing. We're scanning the world at all times now for who can help us survive and thrive. And that's why we scan emails. That's why we don't read the whole thing. That's why we just skip through social media. So strangely we're trying to find people who can help us survive and thrive, whether it's a dry cleaner, or a waitress or dentist. And at some point I think it was about 2015.

I started to think about this as a gratitude economy that was emerging. If what we'd been in was the attention economy. I think we're in a weird transition right now. And the pandemic just pushed us over an edge because what were people doing? Do you remember what people were doing in social media?

Those first few weeks of the pandemic, they were celebrating the helpers. They were celebrating people who had discovered the cleverest ways to, to address problems that we all were having. There was so many clever people doing cool things in those first few weeks.

And we,

[00:21:31] Adam: stories that people singing out their windows and

[00:21:34] Lynda: yes, it was huge.

It was huge. And, clever do it yourself, things that we were all stuck with. And then there was the, the bad haircut men and their bad haircuts. Wear the baseball CAS. Did you do a baseball cap week?

[00:21:47] Adam: I know I had a long delay before my haircut.

[00:21:51] Lynda: Yeah we started to get more light hearted about

[00:21:54] Adam: Hmm.

[00:21:55] Lynda: we started to really appreciate and reward people who are experimenting with new ways to do customer service. And even when it failed, we had a good sense of humor about it. We rewarded them for trying. And this was something that was well underway before the pandemic, but I think it got a huge shove.

And then we really had no tolerance for the chaos builders.

Oh, I'm telling you what? My favorite new show that I was watching every night at nine o'clock after two weeks, the first two weeks of the pandemic, they had nothing nice to offer. They just were ratcheting up the drama with every single word. I just felt like I should just don't need this. I think people were doing that more than just me, that people were choosing to start ignoring the chaos builders right then. Okay. So here's where we all are. We're all consumers. So I'm telling people engage in the gratitude economy, celebrate the people you do business with in your life that you're super grateful to have there.

They may be the trusted advisor that that you have it in an accountant, or it may be a restaurant where there's a certain waitress that just always makes you feel lucky. We need to say thank you more often. And then the gratitude of how many people are I tell people, Go for the tender comments from others.

[00:23:20] Adam: So really just heartfelt and real

[00:23:24] Lynda: Yeah.

[00:23:25] Adam: kind of reflecting back your gratitude for everything that the people around you are doing to support your own life, even if you're just paying for a service. So some sometimes just realizing the person that's behind the. The business or the transaction.

[00:23:40] Lynda: Yeah, I was going through an airport a couple of weeks ago and oh gosh, I made a great mistake and there was my pocket knife in my purse that I carried for three decades all over the world. And it looked like it as TSA agent, she pulled it out and she said, sweetheart, this looks fresh. You've got to get this back out to your car.

I just can't throw this . And she just knew she just took a look at it. She took one. Look at me. I looked like I was a world worn traveler.

[00:24:13] Adam: Not dangerous.

[00:24:15] Lynda: Yeah, but she, this sweetheart and she meant it. And then she made it really clear that she was going to make it possible for me to get that.

They're nice and put it in my car and get back through really quick. Now she didn't have to do that. She wasn't getting paid anymore for being nice and thoughtful and lovely and connecting because that's what she did. She knew exactly what that meant. And every morning to accept. And she decides who she's going to be for others. I think we all have the same choice, no matter our field. Some of us deal with customers, some deal with just, work groups. We could be in a gratitude comedy economy relationship with our coworkers as well. But I'm looking at social media and saying how quickly business can lose ground.

If they aren't part of the gratitude account, the gen Zs and millennials have no tolerance for discovering that some big major corporation has child labor in their supply chain. Okay. So the gratitude economy is even bigger than just our nice dry, cleaner dentist or waitress. It's really growing into this movement where people are becoming values driven, consumers that 69% of people now identify as that. Which means they are spending their money with corporations that make them feel grateful.

[00:25:38] Adam: Got it. So people are just more aware and do more research about the values that a company espouses and is living up to.

[00:25:48] Lynda: That's it that living up to part because there's no fooling the generation of internet users who are digital now. There's no PR hype or anything that could get around being called out for not walking the talk. I would always, I like to tell a story of a couple of months ago I was dashing out of the house to get it. And said, so anybody need anything from the big box store? I shout it out. And all three of my kids, I get to gen Z years in a millennial, all three of them yelled. No, what? No, don't go to that box store. They said all these things. Knew about the CEO of one box store, one giant place. And then they said go over to this other one because their CEO is, and then they've told all the stories about all the good he's doing in the world.

And it no longer became about what I was, whether I was going to be $42 or $48 for the sheet of plywood that was irrelevant.

[00:27:01] Adam: Yeah.

[00:27:01] Lynda: for them. They really, their values driven consumers. And they did not want to shoot the plywood, our house that that was attached to that negative aspect happening in society.

So this is it. We are becoming more and more able to check out what companies are doing to make the future a better place for all of us or not. There's so much choice. Now. We have so many choices.

[00:27:30] Adam: So there seems to be one aspect of this, which is one, just paying attention to what corporations are doing. Stories are emerging about them because people do share very quickly, both the good and the bad.

[00:27:42] Lynda: Yeah. Here's what I'm noticing in the gratitude economy that's coming. It used to be that a good deal. That something was a good deal. If you got so much, it was all about how much you got for your money. And what I'm noticing with this gratitude economy is that the definition of a good deal is changing.

Like a good deal to my kids is okay. I'm going to pay $300 for a pair of glasses. Anyway, no matter what. But if I buy from this company, they're going to give a pair of glasses to someone in need. And that's a good deal

That doesn't have anything to do with getting the lowest price or the cheapest or the most for your money.

It's I think that definition of what a good deal is changing. And I think it's becoming whether a good deal is something that has a positive impact for the greater good.

[00:28:37] Adam: Got it. So for companies, what are some things that they need to do in order to be a good player in the gratitude economy.

[00:28:47] Lynda: so they're going to have to walk their talk. There's a reason why Unilever bought Ben and Jerry's for what $925 million. And that was a long time ago. That was they saw this thing. They totally saw this thing. The Ben and Jerry's cows poop in my driveway sometimes when they get up

[00:29:06] Adam: Oh, wow.

[00:29:07] Lynda: Yeah. I'm talking to you from the part of Vermont where looked at a jury's plan, ice cream finance.

[00:29:13] Adam: Okay.

[00:29:15] Lynda: And I remember a time when it was looked at as so hippy dippy and irrelevant to the broader economy. Now you got Peet's coffee, which has a social mission. You've got Burt's Bees being bought for.

Gosh knows. I used to know all these figures. What's happening. There is corporations are are recognizing that they have to have a part of their business footprint, be about making the world a better place.

Really as this is a cycle that we can all contribute to and then in our working lives, we can find ways to add to it as well that we can contribute to the growing gratitude economy by not accepting the status quo.

Looking a little deeper before we go buy that piece of plywood. Making sure we, we reward behavior. We want repeated. Like for instance, in a restaurant, we'll all go to a restaurant where they get 45 minutes behind and the waitress who's coming by every five minutes and saying, can I fill you water?

How about another drink? Can I, you hear some free or horderves or peanuts or whatever, versus the waitress or waiter who just standing on the over in the corner, not even eyeballing us for 40 minutes talking about last night party, one has rigorous inten tion one's going the extra mile. The other one is going through the motions. And we'll still give the 20% tip, even though the meal was so late to the one that was going the extra mile.

[00:30:39] Adam: Yeah.

[00:30:40] Lynda: So it's not just saying thank you. And that's a huge part of it, but we can actually reward behavior you want repeated and that propagates the wave. So as consumers, if we do a little bit of homework before we buy, decide who to buy from and we say, thank you, we call it out. We celebrate that on social media.

Whenever we can, we propagate that way and we get the future. Participated in creating,

And for corporations and companies, it's super easy if you're like being a dentist office or a dry cleaner or whatever, you just be nice and make sure all your employees propagate that sort of real people, kindness, ethos.

And in corporations, you have to walk your talk. You have to take a deep breath and say, does anything going on around here that we wouldn't want spread all over social media from the CEO down from the CEO down, we should scratch your heads. If there's a lot written about us by employees who leave are our corporations and have nothing but negativity to say that's problem. We've got to make sure our supply chains are aligned with a better future.

[00:31:49] Adam: It seems like even in that corporate environment where sometimes it feels like change needs to come top down, people don't realize the power of showing up with that attention and looking out, that you can lead from pretty much any position and have ideas heard if you have something which is genuine and.

We'll lift up the company. So quite often your attention can create that shift.

[00:32:15] Lynda: I tell you, I hear from from business leaders all over the place that finding and retaining good employees is the number one problem. I was just talking to a business leader in India recently, it was it's exactly the same. It gets me for the whole world, but just anecdotally, I was surprised.

He says, oh yes, Lynda, that this is the biggest attracting and keeping good employees. And that goes with another crazy statistic. I discovered in Glassdoor, did a study and they found that 64% of employees want to work for companies that whose values match their own. So this is a part of a trend that I'm beginning to talk a lot about, which is living with purpose. And of course the gratitude economy and all of us building lives of purpose are intertwined. If we want our working life to match the way we want to see our personal life, flourish we're going to look to work in environments for companies large and small that make us feel like like our work has meaning and that we can bring our best to the table and it will be appreciated.

[00:33:27] Adam: I like that. And it seems like one aspect of this gratitude economy is as you're showing up and acknowledging. The other people that you interact with, there's more authentic conversations, which come out of that. You're able to connect with people at a deeper level where you can hear about the things that they're curious about.

So it's not just being grateful for, the way that comes across, but maybe that leads to a conversation. Being able to acknowledge them for the person that they are.

[00:33:56] Lynda: Absolutely. It's the hobby that they have, that, that you share that you discover because you take one minute to have a more, a little bit of conversation and be curious about them. I think curiosity is woven all through the gratitude economy. Thanks for reminding me of it. Because, a manager should be curious about the those unique skills that each of us have and how we might contribute.

I interviewed a wonderful evolutionary biologist named Dr. Tamsin Willie Barker, who advises giant corporations about the fact that human beings are culturally and socially organized like ants and bees.

[00:34:38] Adam: Huh.

[00:34:38] Lynda: The other primates do not self-organize into creating and being productive.

But ants and bees naturally do. And so do we.

Her whole thesis that she works from. It's not just the theory is that if we were a corporation and we'd go on to all that trouble, the hire the very best employee. And then we plop them down into a little square box of tasks and ways systems and all that we have completely.

Cut off the greatest assets that they might have brought to our company, which is this collective way that human beings self-organized. And so that'll be part of the gratitude economy too, is that, we will look at the people we hire as whole people, as people who are built to contribute something.

And we will go to the effort to organize things in a way that people can show up for their skills,

[00:35:41] Adam: That makes a lot of sense of why that pandemic was so powerful because all of a sudden people were at home in their home environment and they were able to live their lives in a way that was more congruent with who they were.

[00:35:55] Lynda: so true at him. I just heard some, I, it was on I'm here yesterday that somebody had done a pretty important study that found that 60% of people don't want to go back to work.

[00:36:06] Adam: Okay.

[00:36:07] Lynda: In the workplace and you got, that's got to cause us to scratch our heads, that what was going on in those environments that was not additive to people's lives.

This is part of the gratitude economy too, by the way, is that work will be additive to our lives. I spring out of bed every morning and get to work at 5 36 in the morning because I absolutely love what I'm doing with everyone in circles. No, I'm not walking along, dragging my knuckles after a long day, I'm like, oh my God, I can't believe what I got done today.

And we should all have that lovely feeling, whatever our niche is. And not that we should have it instantly. I don't know. There's something to paying your dues, having to work hard and develop the coping skills through times when things aren't absolutely a great fit for us. But then the gratitude economy we will be noticing, and we will each be finding more and more people who have found their calling and her offering that calling.

And we're be happy that they make a good wage. We'll be happy. And then gratitude economy. It's not going to be about not wanting a company to make money. They can make money. As long as they're making the world a better place along the way. Not the opposite.

[00:37:27] Adam: And then. And the employees will be delighted to be part of that mission and that force.

[00:37:33] Lynda: Yeah, you see it. There are places that, that are doing this all over the place. And once I've planted these seeds in your mind and your audience's mind, I encourage people to look for it. Just start noticing that place that really makes you feel good every time you step in the door and then go the extra mile.

And thank them.

[00:37:54] Adam: Love the flow of this conversation, because at the very beginning, we were talking about this natural impulse that has been coming to the surface that people who want to find their calling. And what I've gotten from this conversation is the gratitude economy is a gateway for this. It leads to more effective choices that you're making with, businesses that align with your values.

It's also a way for you to show up in the work that you do to be more present and have more genuine interactions with other people. and through that, be more guided by your curiosity and the people that you interact with and that will lead you more to understanding your own calling

[00:38:34] Lynda: that's it. A healthy work environment would have you, no matter how large or small would have people curious about others and would be safe enough that, you can disagree. And that where I always think it's funny, this, all this talk about diversity.

Because to me, any business person who is trying to solve problems needs as much diversity of opinion as humanly possible. We can't solve the problems we have with the same thinking that got us here.

That is just to think any other way is self-defeating. So in the graduate economy, things like diversity, whether it's gender diversity or neurodiversity, you heard that one of the biggest Pricewaterhouse accounting firms in the world is now looking for people who maybe on the Asperger's spectrum, because they seem to have the gifts that it takes to do the level of concentration and focus.

Now there's an example of the gratitude economy right there. They figured out that why they never attracted these employees before it was because their interview process was automatically going to roll them out. So they've created an entirely new interview process and and. That works for people who have a different kind of mind, and then they bring some neuro diversity to their workplace. Logically that offers more ideas that offers more energy towards problem solving. It's just obvious that I'm very optimistic, but in a very casual, relaxed way about the future.

I think more and more people will find these ways of taking what we already have and doing something new with it.

[00:40:19] Adam: Brilliant. Thank you so much for sharing all about the gratitude economy today. It's been a huge pleasure.

[00:40:24] Lynda: I delight in talking about it because I can see it all around me and I just want more and more people to see it in practice.

[00:40:31] Adam: Before we wrap up, how can people find ever-widening circles and the conspiracy of goodness.

[00:40:37] Lynda: Yeah. So the mothership of our many platforms is the website. at ever widening circles.com. And if people are, looking for more in the direction of community building for themselves or their communities, finding a place that's safe and kindred spirits will be found. And problem solving is happening.

That's at the conspiracy of goodness network. That's the social media platform that we've created for folks who are wanting to do good in the world and find other like-minded people. And I'd say I, I have to recommend watching, exposing the conspiracy of goodness, Ted talk that will give you a spring in your step and start to remodel your view of the world around you.

Because that's what we need to do. We need to change the negative dialogue log of that. And if people want me to speak for their group or in any way, share my message with the folks they care about or the folks they work with. You can find me at Dr. lynda.com that's Dr. Dash L Y N D A.com

[00:41:45] Adam: that's beautiful. If you're listening you can check out the show notes on people, helping people.world for any of these resources. And until next time, cheers.

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