Finding The Right Words

Finding The Right Words


So often we hear It’s not what you say, but how you say it. Generally that’s taken in the context of tone of voice and body language, but oftentimes the specific words you use to express yourself are just as important.


Someone asks you if you’ll be able to get a project done on time. Yes you can – so you answer: Yes I think I can or Yes I can.


There may not seem like a huge difference between those two sentences, but one is an absolute affirmative, while the other still has question marks attached to it. Which one would you rather hear?


The words you choose speak volumes about you and at the same time influence how others perceive you.


Indefinite statements vs. definite statements

When you say things like I think or I guess, whatever follows is automatically on weaker ground than a simple direct answer. I guess I’ll go to that seminar implies and underlying unwillingness to do it and makes you seem wishy-washy.


I think I’ll go to that seminar implies a lack of commitment. I should be able to go. I’m supposed to go. The listener all of those statements will still not have any idea of whether or not you actually have any intention of going.


Yes I’m going is clear and decisive.


No I don’t believe this will be of benefit to me removes any ambiguity and provides a reason.


If you actually don’t know, give a reason why and a time when you will have an answer. I have to check with X, I will let you know by the end of the day.


Avoid negative statements

If you want someone to listen with an open receptive mind, you’ll have more success if you frame what you have to say using positive words rather than negative ones.


Rather than Don’t always hit reply all, turn the statement around to Only hit reply all when necessary.


Instead of I don’t like negative people go with, I prefer positive people.


By removing the negative words you’re eliminating a negative undertone you may not even realize is there.


Eliminate can’t

You may not be able to do everything you’re asked to do, however can’t is often people’s go-to word for won’t.


If you actually mean won’t then say so. It’s always better to be clear with your words and intentions. If what you’re being asked is outside of your skill set or knowledge then follow up with a solution. That’s not something I’m familiar with, I will call Sarah she can help. Or I have not done that before, I will find out how.


Your words are a reflection of who you are. People will be more inclined to listen to and follow someone who is direct, straightforward and positive. They will trust a person who is unambiguous in what they say.

Emotional Intelligence And You

Emotional Intelligence And You


What is Emotional Intelligence (EQ) you may ask, and what does it have to do with my professional life?


Emotional Intelligence is your ability to recognize your own emotions and those of other people, and how well you can process that information and use it to navigate the social environment you’re in.



Your EQ is based on four components:


Self-awareness – Your ability to recognize which emotions are influencing you at any given time and how they’re affecting your thoughts and behaviors. How well you understand your strengths and weaknesses and how confident you are in yourself.


Self-management – Your skill at managing your impulses. How well you manage your emotions in healthy ways, whether or not you get flummoxed by change, how well you’re able to follow through on commitments. Your emotional flexibility.


Social awareness – Your ability to understand the emotions and needs of others, to pick up on emotional cues in group dynamics, to understand what’s really going on beneath the surface.


Relationship management – How well you can communicate clearly, inspire and influence others, manage conflict and work well in a team.


The reason your EQ impacts your professional life is, according to a test conducted by Talent Smart, people with high EQ make $29,000 more annually than their low EQ counterparts. 58% of your job performance is based on your EQ, and 90% of top performers have high EQ.



In the past we were always taught that a high IQ – Intelligence Quotient was what was going to get us ahead in the world, but it turns out your EQ can be an even better indicator of your potential success than your IQ. And the good news is that unlike IQ, which pretty much stays the same your whole professional life, your EQ is something you can develop.



Just because you’ve flown off the handle with little provocation in the past or didn’t take how others felt into account, doesn’t mean it always has to be that way. There are things you can do to help you increase your Emotional Intelligence. Here are six from Psychology Today



Reduce negative emotions

No one is immune to negative emotions. The key is not to let them overwhelm you or let them influence your decisions. Two of the biggest contributors to negative emotions are taking things personally and the fear of rejection.


When someone doesn’t do what they say they’re going to do or they’re rude or unhelpful, our first impulse is to take it personally. What we need to remember is, what people do and say often has a lot more to do with them than us. Maybe that person didn’t return your email right away because they got busy with something else. Before jumping to conclusions, dig a little deeper.


If you’re afraid of getting rejected, then get rejected until it doesn’t bother you anymore. Go ahead and put yourself into the face of NOs. After a while you’ll build up a tolerance to them.


Also instead of focusing all your energy on a single outcome, give yourself lots of options so if one thing doesn’t work out, you have other avenues to turn to.


Find ways to diffuse your stress

There’s going to be stress. Much as we’d like to, we can’t always sidestep it, but instead of flipping out there are a couple of things you can do to cool yourself back down – for example a splash of water on the face can help, or some fresh air. A walk outside, or a quick run. A few minutes of movement and change of scenery might be all you need to deal with the situation with a cooler head.


Learn how to express your emotions with words

We are pretty good at reminding our kids to “use your words” but as adults we will often keep our emotions bottled up inside which

A. Will often lead to illness and

B. Does nothing to change the situation with the person or situation that’s got us bottled up.


Instead of lashing out with “you are…” or “you have to…” learn how to reframe what you say from the “I” perspective. “I feel frustrated when I have to send several emails to you before I get a response.”


Recognize when you’re getting pulled into other people’s dramas

When someone is in a bad mood or starts yelling or speaking rudely our first impulse is to give it right back – like a mirror. Once again it’s important to remember that’s their baggage and you’ve got no business carrying it.


Learn the art of getting back up after you fall

When life knocks you down you’ll sometimes want to just stay down. Instead of dwelling on the fact that you’re down, ask yourself why? Did I fall because of something I did? What part of what I did wasn’t successful? How can I change that? Instead of thinking of knock-downs as failures think of them as learning experiences.


Foster close personal relationships

When we meet up with someone, we ask them how they’re doing as a matter of course, but do we really care about the answer? Become attentive to other people, to their words, their body language, your body language. The closer your attention to your relationships, the more in-tune you will become to them. The more you learn to genuinely care about others the higher your EQ will become.

Set Yourself Apart From The Job Hunting Pack

Set Yourself Apart From The Job Hunting Pack


A generation ago landing that first job was pretty easy compared to the situation now. Job seekers simply didn’t have to contend with the fierce competition for every position the way they do now.


With so many people vying for your job, you may find it’s the little things that set you apart from the pack.


Do your homework

If you want to shine during an interview, then thoroughly acquaint yourself with the company before you even begin tailoring your resume for them or writing your scintillating cover letter. That means checking out their About Us page, their Facebook page, Twitter. Get a feeling for the sort of company they are and incorporate that into your words, in person and on paper (or virtual paper).


Go over your resume with a magnifying glass

We don’t literally mean you should go over your resume with a magnifying glass, but we do mean you should check and check again and then get someone else to check for you to confirm there aren’t any typos or spelling mistakes on your resume and cover letter. Before you send it out print your resume and give the hard copy on final going over.


Follow up

After sending in your resume you might think your part of the initial application process is over, but there’s still one more thing you need to do. Follow up within a week. Follow up can be as simple as a quick note to the HR person or hiring manager, confirming how enthusiastic you are about the opportunity. You can also reiterate exactly how it is that you’re going to benefit the company.


Thank them for the interview

Within twenty four hours of your interview, follow it up with a thank you note. In the note, thank the interviewer for meeting with you, and once again, quickly touch on why you are going to be such an asset to the company. If you can manage to squeeze in something you discussed during the interview, brownie points for you!


Always have your elevator pitch ready

You never know when you’re going to run into someone who could possibly benefit you professionally. The last thing is want is to find yourself tongue tied when what you should be doing is wowing them with all the reasons you’re such a great candidate. Your pitch should be short somewhere between thirty seconds and a minute and it should include who you are, your great attributes and what you’re looking for.

Work on it unit you’ve come up with something snappy and attention getting. Practice your elevator pitch when you don’t need it, so when you do need it, it chirps out of your mouth like an early morning songbird.

Positively Increase Your Productivity

Positively Increase Your Productivity


Ever wonder how you can get more done everyday? Here’s something you might not realize, the higher your positivity, the higher your productivity!


You are a mirror to yourself

It might sound a little too smile and the whole world smiles with you simplistic to be true, but it is. You are a mirror to yourself and everything you think and do reflects back to you. Being productive makes you feel good about yourself and feeling good will make you more productive. It’s kind of like the opposite of a vicious cycle!


Get the cycle started

The key is getting the cycle started. Make a point of deciding to bring more positivity to what you do and that will encourage the productivity. Or conversely, bring up your productivity a bit, feel good what you’re accomplishing and boost your positivity.


Believe in your abilities

You will never be able to boost your productivity if you don’t believe you’re capable of doing more than you’re doing right now. If you don’t really believe you can do more then are you sure you’re in the right place? Is this something you want to continue with? If you don’t believe you can do more then you certainly can’t.


If you believe you can do more then you’re ready to lay down the foundation for achieving your productivity goals.


Schedule your productivity

To increase your productivity you need to set clear guidelines for yourself. Written guidelines that you adhere to. That means lists. Priority lists of things that MUST get done, should get done and wouldn’t it be great if I could get it done for each day.


Block out time for your lists and don’t finish the day without completing the MUST list. Hopefully you’ll also get through the should list. Wouldn’t it be great if you also made a dent in that list as well?


Plan out your lists for tomorrow at the end of today so as soon as you’re ready to get to work, you know what needs to get done.


At the end of the week create a master list for the week ahead. By filling your time in advance you are much more likely to stick to the plan when the time actually comes.


Seeing your accomplishments feels good

As soon as you start seeing progress you immediately start feeling better about what you can do. The better you’re feeling, the more motivated you’ll be to keep on doing what you’re doing to increase that productivity. Your productivity is a reflection of your abilities. Feeling good about your abilities encourages you to push yourself to the next level.


Feelings are contagious

All those good feelings you’re starting to have about yourself won’t stay limited to yourself for long. Your positive outlook and ability to get things done will inspire those around you to find their own happiness and increase their own productivity.


Problems seem less daunting

If you consistently feel like you’re out of time and failing in the accomplishing department it’s hard to stay positive, if however you’re seeing positive outcomes on a consistent basis, then when problems do arise you’re much more likely to take them in stride and believe they are things that can be overcome, rather than things that will can stop you in your tracks. Because you believe you can get things done, you feel good about yourself. Productivity leads to positivity and positivity leads to productivity. It’s another one of life’s cycles.

Why Not?

Why not?

George Bernard Shaw is the author of Pygmalion, the story of a professor who makes a bet that he can take a destitute flower girl from the street and teach her so well that she will pass for a duchess at an upcoming party at the ambassador’s place.


The same story is also told in the movie “My Fair Lady.”


Eliza Dolittle does pass for a duchess at the party. With a little tutoring, she is a transformed woman. Dramatics of the relationship between professor Henry Higgens and ex-street urchin Eliza Dolittle aside, the story is a perfect illustration of George Bernard Shaw’s observation, “Some men see things as they are and ask why. Others dream things that never were and ask why not.”


Where you start does not determine where you will end

Just because Eliza Dolittle was born into poverty does not mean she hasn’t got the intelligence and capacity to be something else. She is perceived as a duchess because that’s how she presents herself.


People will generally take you at face value. If you present a confident, competent exterior, people will assume that’s what you are on the inside too.


Just because something or someone is one way that does not mean it or they must always remain that way. Current circumstances are not a snapshot caught in a drop of amber that always must remain as is.

How Do You Find Your Passion?

brain and heart interactions concept best teamwork


So often we hear how wonderful it is to work at something you love. How if you follow your passion it doesn’t even feel like work.  That’s all well and good if you know precisely what you’re passionate about and set out to follow your passion where ever it may lead.


But what about if you can’t come up with a huge, burning passion to motivate you? What then? Are you destined to languish in an unfulfilling career? Absolutely not!


Check out this article from Forbes detailing 7 steps you can take to find your passion!




Can An Introvert Become Company CEO?

Can An Introvert Become Company CEO?


When we think of leaders, whether they be leaders in our peer group, leaders on a work detail, or leaders of a whole company we will often picture extroverted, Hello, How Are you, Great To Meet you! Let’s spend the next several hours getting to know each other! types.


While extroverts might be great at commanding attention while oozing confidence, that doesn’t necessarily make them the best people to actually lead and inspire others. Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates are both highly inspiring and great leaders, and both are famous introverts.


Great listeners

Generally introverts actually prefer to listen than to speak. That makes them great listeners. An introvert is more likely to thoroughly listen to what others and telling them and then give those people more room to develop their ideas. An introvert likes to work on his or her own, so they give others the opportunity to do the same. People who work for introverts feel heard and recognized.


Well thought out decisions

Where an extroverted CEO might be inclined to burst out of the gate running full steam ahead, an introvert will more likely have spent a lot more time with an idea in his or her head, regarding it from every perspective before moving forward. Their decisions are well thought out and well informed.


In the GeekWire article, Do Introverts Make Better CEOs 


They refer to a study made by researchers from Stanford and the University of Chicago that found “A correlation between CEOs with reserved personlities and contemporaneous and future return on assets and cash flow.”


Passion has nothing to do with extroversion or introversion

The thing all successful CEOs have in common is great passion for what they’re doing. Passion has nothing to do with whether you love to take command of a room or whether you prefer more intimate encounters. Passion comes from within and when you find something you’re passionate about that’s what’s going to take you to the top.


Check out the inspiring life lessons from these Three introverted CEOs


If you’re introverted and thought leadership was out of the question, think again. The CEO prize is as available to you as anyone else!