WEIRTON - When trying to improve personal and business relationships in a fast-paced world, members of the Rotary Club of Weirton Heights learned that being kind and safe can help everyone get along better.
Daniel Caron of Original Play, a company focused on providing programs for businesses, colleges and other settings to promote healthy, harmonious interactions, spoke to the Rotary Club recently concerning the program.
Caron said one thing he sees right now in the political arena is anything but a "United" States. He said right now, it feels like this country should be referred to as the "Fighting States of America." He said he sees two leaders acting the exact opposite way the nation is telling children they ought to behave. He said reality television shows the same thing, separation and exclusivity instead of unity.
Members of the Rotary Club of Weirton Heights invited Daniel Caron, right, to talk with the club members about being safe and kind to improve relationships and get along better. With the assistance of Lisa Soly, left, Caron demonstrated several options available when faced with a confrontation. -- Angelina Dickson
People, Caron said, are creatures of habit but there is more than one option when it comes to patterns of fear, aggression and violence. He said it can be transformed into love, kindness and belonging.
"Original Play conveys a message of connection that is a powerful alternative to fear and contest behavior," he said. "We need to talk about our options and responding to people in a different way. No one has ever said to me that they were overwhelmed with kindness and that I needed to stop being kind or safe."
Caron said taking time to think about which is the best way to react by elevating, not escalating, a situation takes years of practice. He said if a person spends time practicing being a jerk, then it will take time to unlearn that behavior.
At times, it seems people have a hard time interacting with each other peacefully enough without adding modern technology to it, said Caron. He said slowing down and taking time to relax can make a big difference.
"This doesn't mean we are bad people or stupid. It means we just aren't looking at all the options available to us in a situation," he said. "You can fight, run away, freeze and become a victim or react safely and with kindness."
Caron said the way to connect with people and the world around dramatically shapes everyday life. For this reason Original Play is applicable to many areas including business, education, family relationships and health by demonstrating there are better ways to spend energy than in postures of self-defense.
(Dickson can be contacted at email@example.com)