Are You A People Blossumer?

by Tess on February 25, 2010


Creative Commons License photo credit: faungg

Our guest today is Douglas Cartwright, from "Living Words." Douglas, 36, is the CEO and Primary Coach of Living Words Coaching and Training.

He is an expert in cognitive-behavioural change techniques with over 15 years experience in helping people make significant personal transformations.

He’s trained in the USA, New Zealand and the UK and is an Associated Certified Meta-Coach and a Neuro-Linguistic Programming Trainer.

His expertise is in helping people untie their psychological knot, renew their minds and live their words so that they actually get to do what they say they want to do. He trains people to access their personal ‘genius’ states for heightened personal effectiveness.

He has been a Christian for 12 years and considers his faith to be central to how he lives.

Are you a People Blossumer?

 Are you a ‘people blossumer’?

Are you someone around whom people blossom…?

In nature the sun shines upon a bud and the flower unfurls in its entire beauty. Do you have this effect on people?

Do people grow and change for the better because of your influence in their lives?

I work as a professional effectiveness coach with people who have gotten ‘stuck’ and want to get moving, and start taking action. And take action they do. But what about with the people I come into contact with day after day?

What about my family? What about my friends? Do my out-of-work people blossom around me?

What about you?

Are you a leader of people?

Do your people blossom?

What gets in the way of you ‘blossoming people’?

Bluntly, once you deal with your issues about people that have hurt you, and groups of people you don’t like, trust etc. I think it mostly comes down to your basic concept of human nature.

·        What do you really think about people? 

·        Yes, but deep down, what do you really think?

Everyone has as a fundamental theory about what people arereally like. Fundamentally, are people good or bad? Do they rise to your expectations or fall to their basest nature?

What do you think?

Your philosophy will have been shaped by many things: parents, peers, school experiences, religious teachings to name a few.

Having had a rather unpleasant childhood, I grew up believing that deep down people were just out to hurt me. This didn’t make me want to ‘love my neighbour as myself’.

I had to re-examine my concepts of human nature. I turned to my Bible and decided that people were created in God’s image but had fallen from that. Therefore, they have a lot of potential to rise to do great things (and are capable of doing terrible things as well.)

The reasons your base-line beliefs on human nature are important are because during times of stress your attitudes and actions may reflect what you truly think people will do when the chips are down.

You can mouth platitudes about how all people are basically decent but if you don’t believe it, you won’t live it.

In The Sky’s Is Not The Limit  Malcom Kiliminster says “There is no “middle ground”.  Either you care deeply and passionately in the potential of people, even if you are seen as naïve for doing so, or you discard life as meaningless.”

It’s also important to respect people, and really listen to them. Even as a professional coach, I only took leaps and bounds in being able to truly listen to people when I took the position that I had no idea what they were going to say next.

Assuming that I knew absolutely nothing that was coming next awoke a hungry curiosity in me, an even stronger desire to understand how they thought – to build understanding. And this made me a more eager attentive listener. Have you ever talked to someone who made you feel like for that moment you were the centre of the world?

What helps people blossom?

I am fairly sure I have the answer: it’s love. Love is what motivated me to change. Love, from a friend who took me under his wing when I was young, impulsive and stupid and treated me like his son.

And because he believed in me, I changed for the better.

The most important thing is to love people. And loving people is not merely a feeling but a way of treating them.

To develop as a people blossumer you must know how to really love people – and not just when you feel like it either!

Your love for them must be like a rock raised high: a constant fixed point from which you view people and do not deviate no matter what waves of emotions swirl around you.

Your commitment to love – regardless – must be so far above and beyond you’re the ebb and swing of your everyday moods that they do not even touch it. Yes, it’s hard.

I understand recently that this is how Christians can say God (who is love) is their rock; because “ he does not change like the shifting lights and shadows”.

We do. He doesn’t.

Lest you think I am talking about being all huggy-touchy-feeling (calm down Type-A personalities!) I will state that it is entirely possible to feel furiously angry with someone and yet be calm and come at their situation from a place of love.


Well, part of it comes from what I said above: it depends on whether you think people are deserving of love in all circumstances.

Another thing that helps is what Michael Hall, creator of Neurosemantics and Frame Games says “The problem is always the frame [belief, decision, value], not the person”.

You can change a belief more easily than you can change a ‘person’.

What does it mean to love people? How do I know when I am loving people?

I’ve talked a lot about love but what do I actually mean?

(We all have our own version of love but let’s look at one definition so respected that has so stood the test for the last two thousand years. You have probably heard it at a wedding ceremony.)

“The love of which I speak is slow to lose patience – it looks for a way of being constructive,

It is neither anxious to impress,

It does not cherish inflated ideas if its own importance,

It is never rude,

Love does not insist on its own way,

Love is not quick to take offence. Love keeps no score of wrongs.

Love is never glad when others go wrong, but joyfully sides with the truth.

There is nothing love cannot face; there is no limit to its faith.

It keeps up hope in everything.

It gives us power to endure everything.”

1 Corinthians 13: 4 – 8

In this definition love is a series of things you do.

You stay patient. You don’t take offence quickly. You side with those who tell the truth. You hope. These are all actions.

I realise that treating people this way, especially those that act like real jerks, can be difficult. I’m still working on it, believe me. I ain’t no angel but I do want to make the world a better place. I can do this one person at a time.

Fundamentally I believe that treating people any other way that this just breeds enmity and trouble.

And love never fails.

So if you want to blossom people, have a think about the following questions:

  • How will you have to change your expectations of people in order to be more patient with them?
  • What causes you to boast about yourself and your achievements?
  • Do you feel like other people violate your boundaries? Is your expectation of them healthy and realistic?
  • Do you get angry easily and without considering more positive outcomes?
  • Do you want certain people to fail? Why?
  •  Do you hate?
  • What will you have to change in the way you believe about people?
  • Do you believe some people are more worthy than others?

Not all of these questions will be relevant to you. The important point is to get thinking about how you do treat, and how you want to treat those who can best be influenced by you.

 If you are experiencing thoughts and feelings that are interfering with your personal and professional effectiveness, visit and sign up for the mailing list. You’ll receive links to articles that help deal with procrastination, perfectionism, and positive thinking, and product suggestions.

You can also receive a free ‘explore your breakthrough’ session with me, Douglas Cartwright. Read about it

 Follow Doug on Twtter and sign up at Living Words for a 7 part e-course, How to Stop Feeling Stuck and Start and download his free 61 page e-book,on Overcoming Procrastination Effectively. 

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    { 21 comments… read them below or add one }

    Caroline February 25, 2010 at 9:49 am

    Fantastic post! Funny how I never thought about this concept. Do people blossom around me? I would like to think so…but I know I could work harder on the ones closest to me. You are right about one thing…love. The more you give the more those around you will grow.
    .-= Caroline´s last post…I am… =-.


    Douglas Cartwright February 25, 2010 at 10:17 am

    Hi Caroline, thanks for your comment. The full article accidentally got chopped and is now posted up, so feel free to read the rest.



    Jannie Funster February 25, 2010 at 12:05 pm

    I am not sure if I blossume my friends or not, but they sure do blossume ME!!!

    So nice to meet such a wonderful friend of Tess.
    .-= Jannie Funster´s last post…Harbinger Of Great Things To Come =-.


    Hulbert February 25, 2010 at 12:18 pm

    Nice post Douglas. I liked how you shared your experiences with your journey of trying to connect with people. I agree with Michael that the problem that we don’t share love is that there is something in our frame (beliefs, decisions, values, etc.) that make it difficult to do so. It takes patience like you say, but if we reach out to people, let our guards down, and be a good listener, we can experience a better connection with others that influences them in a positive way.
    .-= Hulbert´s last post…My Brother Got Pulled Over by the Police – Part I Interview =-.


    Peggy February 25, 2010 at 1:10 pm

    Do people blossom around me? I really hope so.

    I know I surround myself with people who, when I’m around them, I blossom.

    For the last two weeks I have really seen this part of 1 Corithians 13 in action:

    “There is nothing love cannot face; there is no limit to its faith.
    It keeps up hope in everything.
    It gives us power to endure everything.”

    Thank you,
    .-= Peggy´s last post…40 Truths I Discovered ~ Guest Post by Rita G. =-.


    Tess February 25, 2010 at 2:02 pm

    I KNOW people blossom around you. We blossom through your photos, poetry and authenticity and were not in your physical presence but we are blossoming on a spiritual level. You rock. I love today’s post!

    Just read what I wrote to Caroline and include humor with your photos, poetry and song! Love ya xo

    You are so right and I’ll add practicing non-judgment as well!
    I’m coming over to read part 2…part 1 was so interesting.

    I’m blossoming and blooming with you. I absolutely love that I know you and enjoy reading every word you write. I’m sending loving thoughts in this difficult but love filled time. God Bless!


    Wilma Ham February 25, 2010 at 3:16 pm

    Hi Doug and Tess
    I have been blessed with wonderful parents who did make people blossom and they sure made me blossom.
    We all worked in my father’s shop and it was such a joy to be around him and to experience how he treated us and his customers. There was love around, you could taste it.
    From that experience I just expect loving exchanges with people, in the bus, on stairs, in the shops; it has become a way of life for me, thank goodness.
    To be this way creates so much fun and I am getting so much love back as well.
    I rather create blossoming than irritation and nastiness.
    What else is there to do anyway with difficult people in our lives. Fighting them usually leaves a bad taste and wounds me, so loving them is actually a lot easier really.
    Love is a great currency, so thanks Tess and Doug.

    PS And Tess, I am catching up with blog reading and as I know you will keep blogging but no longer coaching I am looking forward to see what your great mind will come up with. You are not one to sit still and you should not with your talent, so I am anticipating :)
    .-= Wilma Ham´s last post…Wilma on Fear of Losing Love =-.


    Dan @ Anxiety Support Network February 25, 2010 at 3:47 pm

    Doug –

    First of all, I love your Christian perspective. The answers are all on the Bible, and people who don’t find the answers simply haven’t had the Bible taught to them well.

    Love is very difficult, especially the love the Bible encourages us to give. I am newly married and my wife is going through a trying time of an eating disorder and unemployment, and boy, there are certainly some days where love is tough.

    But, your post hits it all on the head, and when we love people as we should, everything ends up going well. Great post!


    vered - blogger for hire February 25, 2010 at 10:05 pm

    So, a ‘people blossumer’ is probably the exact opposite of a ‘toxic friend’… I like to think that I am a ‘people blossumer’, usually, though not always. I also like to think that I can identify people blossumers and toxic friends, hang on to the former and get rid of the latter.
    .-= vered – blogger for hire´s last post…Ten Things I’ve Learned After Two Years of Blogging =-.


    Cheryl Paris February 26, 2010 at 1:22 am

    Hello Doug,

    I believe I am people blossumer and I am also a leader when the situation demands.
    Love demands sacrifice. How many are out there ready to love this way? We can give without loving, but we cannot love without giving. Real love demands sacrifice and one can never achieve it being self-centered.

    I personally liked : Michael Hall, creator of Neurosemantics and Frame Games says “The problem is always the frame [belief, decision, value], not the person”. You can change a belief more easily than you can change a ‘person’. So true!!!

    Cheryl Paris
    .-= Cheryl Paris´s last post…3x Thursday: You are missed! =-.


    Phil - Less Ordinary Llving February 26, 2010 at 1:34 am

    Doug –

    I really enjoyed this post. I believe that every person has huge potential for greatness. I’m also a coach and my role is to help people find and use that power. I think that love, empathy and compassion for others is the best starting point. Great stuff!

    .-= Phil – Less Ordinary Llving´s last post…Stop taking life too seriously – 5 ways to enjoy the journey =-.


    Tracy Todd February 26, 2010 at 3:31 am

    I know that my friends, family and many strangers see me as a People Blossumer. But admitting to being one is more difficult because of the responsibility and expectations that come along with it. I know that I have the power to change people’s mindsets about my world through engaging with them in various manners and I see that as a gift I now have — despite being paralyzed from the neck down.

    Thanks for a great blog.

    .-= Tracy Todd´s last post…A Letter from a Soldier =-.


    Tess February 26, 2010 at 4:30 am

    How wonderful to hear about your childhood. What gifts your parents passed on to you. And what you bring to others on and off line is nothing but blessings. We are happy you’re part of our community. And remember, Wilma no pedestal!

    Love and blessings to your wife. As a former therapist I know how difficult eating disorders are to heal. You are correct with God and all the love your pouring on her I want you to expect a miracle. You are both in my prayers today. God Bless.

    Now I know you are a people blossumer and what you do for all of us on your blog making us aware of marketing insanity…wow when you say toxic friends…the photo that came to mind were dead cherry blossoms. Oh and I know your children are blossumer’s as well;)

    I wholeheartedly agree about the frame changin.’ Well said Doug!

    Love, understanding and compassion may be the entire solution or at least the umbrella. All else falls under it. What a great coach you must be.

    I’m sure just being in your presence is healing. God bless.


    Megan "JoyGirl!" Bord February 26, 2010 at 1:07 pm

    This is tremendously useful, and well written. Thank you, Tess, for having another great guest author.

    While I don’t agree with Malcom Kiliminster (I think this entire life is middle ground), I’m not sure that matters. What you wrote about your personal experience trying to love everyone all the time felt right to me. I do my best, yet I know I have further to go. Those people who test my patience, or who grate my nerves, are just reflecting parts of me I haven’t accepted yet. In some cases I’m embarrassed by it, and in others, I’m accepting of my own shortcomings… Yet I keep trying. That’s all any of us can ask of ourselves while we’re perfecting in this life, right?

    My thanks to you for shining a light on an important topic.
    .-= Megan “JoyGirl!” Bord´s last post…SURPRISE! Spread Joy, Have Fun =-.


    Doug February 27, 2010 at 11:49 am

    Thank you all for commenting, it’s very encouraging.

    I’m thinking a lot about what it means to love people at the moment and I’m starting to write my next piece ‘love is an arm-lock!’ If that intrigues you, please pop over to and have a look around. Big thanks to Tess for letting me guest amongst such a supportive community.

    God bless



    Karl Staib - Work Happy Now February 27, 2010 at 7:36 pm

    I try to help other people blossom. I’m not always successful, but I don’t think we can force people to blossom. They too need to want the change. To me that means being a good listener and encourager. Combine these two skills and blossoming will happen.
    .-= Karl Staib – Work Happy Now´s last post…What I Learned from Working on My Habits =-.


    Hilary February 28, 2010 at 11:39 am

    Hi Tess and Doug .. I know that people look at things in a different light – this has come about from my times at hospitals with my elderly mother and my uncle, and just talking to people and putting my own positive take on things – when I’ve been writing and when I’ve been talking to them. I’ve been surprised and chuffed – it’s a learning curve for me and a benefit from the last few years of their lives. Both my mother and uncle have set high standards for me – totally selfless .. but also so grateful at my input and care.

    When this period is over and I can be myself again .. I’m sure that the events of the last three years + will stand me in very good stead, as will just as importantly the input I see and have received from blogging friends, which will continue .. and the input and book recommendations I’ve received.
    .-= Hilary´s last post…Alpha, Treacle, Beta, Dogger, Snow – what do they mean to you? =-.


    Nea | Self Improvement Saga March 7, 2010 at 12:09 pm

    This is an awesome article. Because of childhood teachings and certain life experiences, it can be difficult to get past the limiting beliefs that we have about people. But when we challenge ourselves to look a little deeper and see everyone for their greatest potential, we
    .-= Nea | Self Improvement Saga´s last post…Take a Deeper Look: A Lesson On Understanding and Love from Brother Bear =-.


    Nea | Self Improvement Saga March 7, 2010 at 12:11 pm

    I hit send to quickly on my last comment. I was saying that when we challenge ourselves to look a little deeper and see everyone for their greatest potential, we grow and encourage others to grow with us.
    .-= Nea | Self Improvement Saga´s last post…5 Steps to Easily Influencing People Without Manipulation =-.


    Brenda March 8, 2010 at 9:05 pm

    I love blossuming people! I can’t sing or dance or paint but I know that I bring out the best in people and I feel good about that. Thank you for such a thought provoking post! I will never look at my interactions with others in quite the same way.


    Doug March 9, 2010 at 9:45 am

    Hello Karl, Brenda and Nea,

    Thank you (and all others) for your comments.

    Writing this post has got me thinking about how I can be more consistent about blossuming people and in addition to what I have written above I think that being convinced that you are loved makes it so much easier to love others genuinely. For me, this means knowing that God loves me because I need to know that I am loved above and beyond telling myself that I am loved (if that makes sense). I know people can love themselves but for me, this is essential.


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