Wednesday, 29 June 2011

The 10 Commandments of How to Get Along with People

For the amusement of some of the Heal's out there, I recently stumbled upon our 96 years in Canada Cookbook that was published for the 1999 reunion (by the 1988 committee).  To even greater amusement, there is a page that's dedicated to THE TEN COMMANDMENTS OF HOW TO GET ALONG WITH PEOPLE, which I really needed to share=).  My fav's might be bullets 3, 5 & 6 ...

  • Keep skid chains on your tongue; always say less than you think.  Cultivate a low, persuasive voice.  How you say it often counts more than what you say.
  • Make promises sparingly, and keep them faithfully, no matter what it costs.
  • Never let an opportunity pass to say a kind and encouraging word to or about somebody.  Praise good work, regardless of who did it.  If criticism is needed, criticize helpfully, never spitefully.
  • Be interested in others, their pursuits, their work, their homes and families.  Make merry with those who rejoice; with those who weep, mourn.  Let everyone you meet, however humble, feel that you regard him as a person of importance.
  • Be cheerful. Don't burden or depress t hose around you by dwelling on your minor aches and pains and small disappoinments.  Remember, everyone is carrying some kind of load.
  • Keep an open mind. Discuss but don't argue.  It is a mark of a superior mind to be able to disagree without being disagreeable.
  • Let your virtues, if you have any, speak fo rthemselves.  Refuse to talk of another's vices.  Discourage gossip.  It is a waste of valuable time and can be extremely destructive. 
  • Be careful of another's feelings. Wit and humour at the other person's expense are rarely worth it and may hurt when least expected.
  • Pay no attention to ill-natured remarks about you. Remember, the person who carried the message may not be the most accurate reporter in the world.  Simply live so that nobody will believe them.  Disordered nerves and bad digestion are a common cause of back-biting. 
  • Don't be too anxious about the credit due you. Do your best, and be patient. Forget about yourself, and let others "remember." Success is much sweeter that way. 

Friday, 24 June 2011

YouthLink-Pathways to Education celebrates 2nd year in Scarborough Village

I had the pleasure of attending last night's year 2 celebration for YouthLink's Scarborough Village Pathways to Education program.  Here is a pic of a mural that many of the youth painted that now hangs in the local Pathways office.   

Gorgeous!  It really is incredible how Pathways has become a blue-chip charity and how quickly it has grown since first launching in Regent Park in 2001.   With 11 sites currently in operation with others surely being planned for roll out across Canada through their "Graduation Nation" campaign, they are in the middle of the kind of scaling up effort unheard of in the non profit world.  

And the best part about it for a public health guy like me:  It goes beyond the usual theorizing and is a practical example of how support around determinants of health can lead to real life objective outcomes that people of all political stripes can see.

For more info on YouthLink & Pathways to Education in Scarborough Village, please visit: or

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Tip of the hat to 3 people from 3 parties

        Although it never received the hype of poverty reduction or other high profile parliamentary committees - the Select Committee on Mental Heath has probably been the most functional one of all during this government, no doubt in part due to members of all 3 elected parties working together. 

        With reasoned debate, a respected consultation process and evidence-guided recommendations - they seemed, at least from an outsider's perspective, to have worked as a committee should.  While the debate will carry on as to how exactly the initiative will roll out and what the specific priorities will be - yesterday's announcement of a new 3 year $257 million strategy to support children's mental health (story at ) is an important product of their work, will help thousands of children youth and families, and is a committment that has a decent chance of surviving an election due to the multi-partisan approach in which it was developed.

        Big congrats are in order to Liberal MPP Kevin Flynn, PC MPP Christine Elliot, NDP MPP France GĂ©linas, and all others who worked hard on this one!