J. Gordon Duncan

Culture, Business, Fitness, Etc.

A Dozen Do-Nots: Assumptions

assumptionsAs much as people hate for others to assume things about them, everyone is prone to assuming.  And here is the crazy thing:  assumptions are so often wrong.  Even worse, assumptions are belittling.  Assumptions say, “You are not worth knowing; I already know enough without speaking to you.”

In light of those dangers, I present A Dozen Do-Nots:  Assumptions.

A Do-Nots:  Assumptions

  1. Do not assume you know what someone is thinking.
  2. Do not assume that you would make better decisions in someone else’s circumstances.
  3. Do not assume your experience equals someone else’s experience.
  4. Do not assume you are smarter than anyone.
  5. Do not assume you are a better person than others.
  6. Do not assume people would have it easier if they took your advice.
  7. Do not assume you would do a better job parenting someone else’s child.
  8. Do not assume you understand the pressures that someone else is going through.
  9. Do not assume you have the best idea in the room.
  10. Do not assume you’ve been heard until someone repeats what you’ve said.
  11. Do not assume you can teach until someone has learned.
  12. Do not assume God, or anyone else, is impressed with you.

A Dozen Do-Nots is part of an on-going series.  You will also find posts about the Dozen from Mike Askew at http://bit.ly/4nnOim.  The idea is to present 12 simple things to avoid in the most practical of areas.

Others in the Series:

Being a Humble Person

Going on a First Date

Meeting Someone for the First Time

Writing

Writing a Sermon

Parenting

Running

Making Your Wife Happy

Marriage Communication

Church Planting

This article also appears at the Raleigh Examiner.

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October 20, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

A Dozen Do-Nots: Humility

i'm-humbleHumility is not something easily attained.  It is also something that no one can ever claim about themselves.  Saying that you are humble makes you proud.  So in an effort to guide us all towards greater humility, a quality long lost in our day and age, I offer a Dozen Do-Nots on being a humble person.

A Dozen Do-Nots:  Humility

  1. Do not take offense if your idea is passed over for someone else’s.
  2. Do not continually refer to your experiences.
  3. Do not think more of yourself than you do of others.
  4. Do not treat others in a way you would not want to be treated.
  5. Do not seek a position of prominence.
  6. Do not determine your identity by what others think of you.
  7. Do not dominate conversations with your stories or opinions.
  8. Do not place your desires before the desires of others.
  9. Do not take offense if people less talented than you succeed.
  10. Do not point out a fault joyously.
  11. Do not begrudge those in need of mercy.
  12. Do not return insult with insult.

A Dozen Do-Nots is part of an on-going series.  You will also find posts about the Dozen from Mike Askew at http://bit.ly/4nnOim.  The idea is to present 12 simple things to avoid in the most practical of areas.

Others in the Series:

Going on a First Date

Meeting Someone for the First Time

Writing

Writing a Sermon

Parenting

Running

Making Your Wife Happy

Marriage Communication

Church Planting

Being Civil to Others

This article also appears at the Raleigh Examiner.

October 13, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 1 Comment

A Dozen Do-Nots: Going on a First Date

Dozen-DoNotsIt has been years since I’ve been on a first date (though every date with Amy has that same excitement).  However, I definitively remember the awkwardness of going out with someone for the first time.  So, with that in mind, I present A Dozen Do-Nots:  Going on a First Date.  Most of these are applicable for older/younger or male/female, but there are a few targeted at the men.  Feel free to contribute.  Enjoy.

A Dozen Do-Nots:  Going on a First Date

  1. Do not wear so much cologne/perfume that your date has to stand in a puddle.
  2. Do not talk about ex-girlfriends or boyfriends.
  3. Do not go to either the most expensive or the cheapest restaurant in town.
  4. Do not embellish your career…tell you what, don’t embellish anything.
  5. Do not order anything you have to eat with your fingers.
  6. Do not forget to use mouthwash (bad breath is a killer).
  7. Do not kiss your date goodbye in front of her parents (just skip out on the kissing if the date is young enough to have to be picked up at her parents for good measure).
  8. Do not wait until your date is getting in the car to clean it.
  9. Do not touch anything but your date’s hands (if that).
  10. Do not go to a movie unless you have had plenty of time to talk before or after.
  11. Do not get your date home late (by either the parents’ or your date’s standards).
  12. Do not show up late or early.

A Dozen Do-Nots is part of an on-going series.  You will also find posts about the Dozen from Mike Askew at http://bit.ly/4nnOim.  The idea is to present 12 simple things to avoid in the most practical of areas.

Others in the Series:

Meeting Someone for the First Time

Writing

Writing a Sermon

Parenting

Running

Making Your Wife Happy

Marriage Communication

Church Planting

Being Civil to Others

Mountain Biking

Wrestling with Your Kids

This article also appears at the Raleigh Examiner.

October 6, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 2 Comments

A Dozen Do-Nots: Meeting Someone for the First Time

Dozen-DoNotsMeeting someone for the first time can be incredibly awkward.  You want to stand up straight, shake with a firm hand, remember names, and on and on.  Since this is a universal experience, I’ve included some definite don’t’s about meeting someone for the first time.  Here are 12 things that I have learned about that first meeting.  If any of you want to contribute, feel free to add or post.  I hope you enjoy.

A Dozen Do-Nots:  Meeting Someone for the First Time

  1. Do not break eye contact first.
  2. Do not give your personal/spiritual/occupational resume (let them ask about you).
  3. Do not turn a hand shake into a strength competition.
  4. Do not get so close they can smell your breath.
  5. Do not forget to repeat their name when they introduce themselves.
  6. Do not introduce your topic until you’ve spoken to theirs.
  7. Do not expect people to wait while you finish something up (email, text, etc).
  8. Do not pitch your deal (your church, job, MLM, etc).
  9. Do not chew gum while speaking.
  10. Do not pretend you remember their name if you have forgotten.  Just ask.
  11. Do not say, “Haven’t we met before?” if you know you haven’t.
  12. Do not make promises to follow up if you do not plan on keeping them.

A Dozen Do-Nots is part of an on-going series.  You will also find posts about the Dozen from Mike Askew at http://bit.ly/4nnOim.  The idea is to present 12 simple things to avoid in the most practical of areas.

Others in the Series:

Writing:  http://bit.ly/3L0CBa

Writing a Sermon:  http://bit.ly/2Tti6o

Parenting:  http://bit.ly/6yv8T

Running:  http://bit.ly/A6NYw

Making Your Wife Happy – http://bit.ly/Ty5OK

Marriage Communication – http://bit.ly/IERbQ

Church Planting – http://bit.ly/37hAPb

Being Civil to Others – http://bit.ly/4nnOim

Mountain Biking – http://bit.ly/vdZ6

Wrestling with Your Kids – http://bit.ly/BaQff

This article also appears at the Raleigh Examiner.

September 30, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

A Dozen Do-Nots: Writing

Dozen-DoNotsA Dozen Do-Nots is part of an on-going series.  You will also find posts about the Dozen from Mike Askew at http://bit.ly/4nnOim.  The idea is to present 12 simple things to avoid in the most practical of areas.

Writing every day, I’ve learned some definite do’s and don’ts about writing.  The hardest thing is to remember what I’ve learned.  Old habits die hard.  With that in mind, I decided to post 12 things that I have learned about writing.  If any of you want to contribute, feel free to add or post.  I hope you enjoy.

A Dozen Do-Nots:  Writing

  1. Do not use anxious when speaking about something in which you are excited.
  2. Do not end a sentence in a preposition.  Really, don’t do this.
  3. Do not use three words when you can use two…or even one.  Seriously, omit needless words.
  4. Do not assume that name calling enhances your point.  It actually diminishes it.
  5. Do not use the word “we” unless you address your audience.
  6. Do not think because people are no longer interacting with you that you have made your point or won the argument.  They may just not like you.
  7. Do not hit publish the moment you finish writing.  Let it percolate.
  8. Do not make presumptions about your audience.  If it is good, people will read it.
  9. Do not hesitate to admit when you are wrong.  Then admit it in writing.
  10. Do not assume you need to produce copy.  If you don’t have anything to say, don’t write.
  11. Do not grow content with what you write about.  Look for new things.
  12. Do not lose the desire for constructive criticism.

This article also appears at the Raleigh Examiner.

Others in the Series:

Writing a Sermon:  http://bit.ly/2Tti6o

Parenting:  http://bit.ly/6yv8T

Running:  http://bit.ly/A6NYw

Making Your Wife Happy – http://bit.ly/Ty5OK

Marriage Communication – http://bit.ly/IERbQ

Church Planting – http://bit.ly/37hAPb

Being Civil to Others – http://bit.ly/4nnOim

Mountain Biking – http://bit.ly/vdZ6

Wrestling with Your Kids – http://bit.ly/BaQff

September 22, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 2 Comments

A Dozen Do-Nots: Writing a Sermon

Dozen-DoNotsA Dozen Do-Nots is part of an on-going series.  You will also find posts about the Dozen from Mike Askew at http://bit.ly/4nnOim.  The idea is to present 12 simple things to avoid in the most practical of areas.

Since I am a pastor, I’ve learned some definite do’s and don’ts about preaching.  With those things in mind, I decided to post 12 things that I have learned about preparing a sermon.  These 12 will probably apply to preparing a Bible study, and a few will apply to giving a talk.  If any of you want to contribute, feel free to add or post.  I hope you enjoy.

A Dozen Do-Nots:  Preparing a Sermon

  1. Do not assume you know the meaning of a text before you start writing your sermon.
  2. Do not assume you are the first person to think of your interpretation.
  3. Do not quote someone unless you give them credit.
  4. Do not ignore the original languages.
  5. Do not practice your sermon more than you pray for it.
  6. Do not only read people with whom you agree.
  7. Do not wait until the end of your sermon to make application.
  8. Do not make yourself the hero of your illustrations.
  9. Do not use your children as examples without their permission.
  10. Do not assume that ground you have already covered has been absorbed.
  11. Do not make the application of your sermon, “Do better.”
  12. Do not preach a sermon without preaching Jesus Christ.

This article also appears at the Raleigh Examiner.

Others in the Series:

Parenting:  http://bit.ly/6yv8T

Running:  http://bit.ly/A6NYw

Making Your Wife Happy – http://bit.ly/Ty5OK

Marriage Communication – http://bit.ly/IERbQ

Church Planting – http://bit.ly/37hAPb

Being Civil to Others – http://bit.ly/4nnOim

Mountain Biking – http://bit.ly/vdZ6

Wrestling with Your Kids – http://bit.ly/BaQff

September 14, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 2 Comments

A Dozen Do-Nots: Parenting

parentingA Dozen Do-Nots is part of an on-going series.  The idea is to present 12 simple things to avoid in the most practical of areas.

Since parenting covers so much territory, I decided to post 12 things that I have learned about parenting.  If any of you veteran parents want to contribute, feel free to add or post.  I hope you enjoy.

A Dozen Do-Nots:  Parenting

  1. Do not miss an opportunity to praise your child
  2. Do not forget to model repentance for your child.
  3. Do not discipline your child without also affirming your love for them.
  4. Do not discipline your child in anger.
  5. Do not forget that you are the adult.
  6. Do not change the house rules to accommodate your schedule if you aren’t willing to change them for your child.
  7. Do not say “no” to dancing with your daughter or wrestling with your son.
  8. Do not start the school day without praying for your child.
  9. Do not hide your past from your child.
  10. Do not grow weary in telling your child that you love them.
  11. Do not make hugs easier for your child to find outside the home.
  12. Do not put your child to bed without praying with them and for them.

Others in the Series:

Running

Making Your Wife Happy

Marriage Communication

Church Planting

Being Civil to Others

Mountain Biking

Wrestling with Your Kids

You will also find posts about the Dozen from Mike Askew.

This article can also be found at the Raleigh Examiner.

September 8, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

A Dozen Do-Nots: Running

Dozen-DoNotsA Dozen Do-Nots is part of an on-going series.  You will also find posts about the Dozen from Mike Askew at http://bit.ly/4nnOim.  The idea is to present 12 simple things to avoid in the most practical of areas.

Since I am a novice runner preparing for my first marathon, I decided to post the 12 things that I have learned in my 3 months of training.  If any of you veteran runners want to contribute, feel free to add or post.  I hope you enjoy.

A Dozen Do-Nots:  Running

  1. Do not spit in front of you; spit to the side (you’ll figure this out).
  2. Do not wear 100% cotton shirts (it’s like wearing a 10 lb weight).
  3. Do not assume you can skip rest before a run.
  4. Do not forget to hydrate before, during, or after a run.
  5. Do not assume you are ready to train for a marathon.
  6. Do not wear brand new shoes on your run; break them in somewhere else.
  7. Do not waste time getting protein in you after your run (do it immediately).
  8. Do not brag about your time or pace.
  9. Do not skip stretching.
  10. Do not compare yourself to other runners.
  11. Do not assume oncoming cars can see you.
  12. Do not run at night alone.

Others in the Series:

Making Your Wife Happy – http://bit.ly/Ty5OK

Marriage Communication – http://bit.ly/IERbQ

Church Planting – http://bit.ly/37hAPb

Being Civil to Others – http://bit.ly/4nnOim

Mountain Biking – http://bit.ly/vdZ6

Wrestling with Your Kids – http://bit.ly/BaQff

September 1, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

A Dozen Do-Nots: Making Your Wife Happy

Dozen-DoNotsA Dozen Do-Nots is part of an on-going series.  You will also find posts about the Dozen from Mike Askew at http://bit.ly/4nnOim.  The idea is to present 12 simple things to avoid in the most practical of areas.

Since the Dozen Do-Nots of Marriage Communication was so popular, I submit another in that line of thinking, but this one is geared toward the men.  I hope you enjoy.

A Dozen Do-Nots:  Making Your Wife Happy

  1. Do not pass a sink full of dishes.
  2. Do not miss an opportunity to pray with your wife.
  3. Do not go to bed angry
  4. Do not complain about your wife to others.
  5. Do not compare your wife to your ex.
  6. Do not pass up a chance to walk with your spouse.
  7. Do not lose your patience when your wife changes her mind.
  8. Do not compare your job to hers (whether she works outside or inside the home).
  9. Do not think that the evenings are your time to relax and her time to work.
  10. Do not think that your experiences negate her opinion.
  11. Do not assume everything that your wife does for you is your right.
  12. Do not forget to open the door for her.

Marriage Communication – http://bit.ly/IERbQ

Being Civil to Others – http://bit.ly/4nnOim

Mountain Biking – http://bit.ly/vdZ6

August 25, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Dozen Do-Nots: Marriage Communication

A Dozen Do-Nots is what I hope will be an on-going series.  You will also find posts in this series from Mike Askew at http://bit.ly/4nnOim The idea is to present 12 simple things to avoid in the most practical of areas.  To kick things off, I present 12 things not to do when trying to communicate with your spouse.  I hope you enjoy.

A Dozen Do-Nots:  Marriage Communication

  1. Do not assume you know what your spouse is thinking.
  2. Do not assume your expectations are known.  Communicate them.
  3. Do not say the word, “What.”  Say the word, “Yes.”  It is a softer way to respond.
  4. Do not give another woman a compliment that you haven’t already given your wife.
  5. Do not chase your spouse through a room trying to make your point.
  6. Do not befriend or communicate with ex’s via social marketing.
  7. Do not criticize your spouse in front of your children.
  8. Do not miss an opportunity to complement your spouse.
  9. Do not use similes.  For example, “You are just like…”
  10. Do not eat dinner in front of the TV.
  11. Do not apologize for your spouse’s hurt feelings.  Apologize for what you have done.
  12. Do not say one thing in order to communicate something else.  Say what you mean to say.

dozendonuts

August 18, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 7 Comments