Lunchtime Links: Kick It Old-School

How nostalgia can help build your own sense of optimism. Also: Two alternative organizational structures which could make your association's workload easier to lift.

How nostalgia can help build your sense of optimism. Also: two alternative organizational structures that could make your association’s workload easier to lift.

Love the ’80s? Of course you do. How about that awesome project you got to work on a long time ago? Pretty rad, right?

Reminisce a second. A moment of reflection might just make you feel a little bit better. Nostalgia’s psychological effects, and more, in today’s Lunchtime Links:

Get nostalgic: Nostalgia has had a huge case of overexposure over the years, as anyone who spent the mid-naughts watching VH1 can attest. But that doesn’t necessarily mean looking back is a bad thing. In fact, a new study published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin suggests that nostalgia can make us more optimistic about the future. “Nostalgia is experienced frequently and virtually by everyone, and we know that it can maintain psychological comfort,” study co-author Tim Wildschut, Ph.D., told PsychCentral. “For example, nostalgic reverie can combat loneliness. We wanted to take that a step further and assess whether it can increase a feeling of optimism about the future.” So if you’re aiming for a pick-me-up, give your past successes a good hard look.

Make your goals attainable: Are you finding that you’re taking on too many things within your small organization’s structure—with none of them getting done effectively? Lori Halley of Wild Apricot understands your plight and suggests that building around a framework could help you reach your goals. She points out two that are worth considering: the “workplan-driven” framework, which focuses on a set agenda for the entire year for both volunteers and staff, and a “mission-driven” model, which gets away from committees and focuses on involving volunteers in whatever small ways the association needs. (Associations Now’s Joe Rominiecki touched on the latter last month.) Laying them side by side, Halley helps you gauge the strengths and weaknesses of each. How can you keep your organization’s work manageable for both your employees and members?

The bad seeds: It’s easy to let an idea grab hold in your brain—but it can be a challenge not to let that lingering thought grow into a head full of doubts. That’s what contributor Geoffrey James warns in his latest piece. He cautions against five “toxic beliefs,” including linking your self-worth to others’ opinions, letting your past define your future potential, and believing that supernatural forces control your destiny. In the case of the third, James writes: “This all-too-common (and ultimately silly) belief robs such people of initiative, making them passive as they wait for their ‘luck’ to change.” Check out the full list—and if these beliefs are plaguing you, work to get out of that mindset.

What’s on your reading list today? Tell us in the comments below.


Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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