Utmost Positive Regard (UPR)

I was reminded of UPR earlier this week when on a call with a group of people with whom I took a leadership program a number of years ago.

What is the intent behind UPR?

To treat everyone we meet with the utmost positive regard.
To believe that s/he is doing her or his best.
To treat people with respect.
To be present.
To be kind.

We hear a lot about the speed of life these days and our distracted living style with our eyeballs glued to our devices. We live in a super connected world yet we’ve developed habits that disconnect us from ourselves as well as those in our immediate vicinity.

What might be possible if we make a point of really connecting with people and sincerely holding them in high regard even when they are annoying us or not doing what we want? (think family or loved ones) Or when we’re in a rush or grumpy? (think driving) Or when we’re treating people as inconsequential by ignoring them even as we interact with them? (think store clerks)

While seemingly innocent, our actions have an impact on the people around us and are often more about what’s going on with us than the other person. Every person matters. Let’s let them know this through our interactions.

Ten suggestions for spreading UPR:

  • Smile.
  • Look people in the eye when smiling and speaking to them.
  • Put your device away at meals, in stores, walking down the street.
  • Ask curious questions to understand another point of view.
  • Be wildly fascinated when listening.
  • Give people your best listening posture – face the person, lean slightly forward, look at her/him, relax your jaw.
  • Catch people at their best…and tell them.
  • Make a phone call instead of texting.
  • Hold the door for the person coming up behind you.
  • Say hello, please and thank you.

The double bonus of spreading UPR is that it will impact how you feel as much as the other person. Positive interaction is known to shift mood… for the better.

Let’s create a UPR epidemic. Please share your ideas for spreading UPR in the comments below.

P.S. No vaccination required!

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