Roadblocks to Listening

April 17, 2013
Listening is one of the most important skills you can master, for both business and personal life success.

Listening also takes effort, and doesn't happen automatically. 

Many barriers get in the way of our ability to listen to one another.  

Some of the worst are:
  1. Making Assumptions about the Other Person - when we tell others how they feel or what they mean, we shut down the conversation.  The word "you" frequently causes a defensive reaction.  Instead, try to reflect what the other person said by saying something like "It sounds like..." or "If I understand what you're saying..."  Then, be open to them letting you know if you really understood or not; some clarification may be necessary.
  2. Mental Chatter - It is possible to look like you're listening even when you're not.  However, to truly listen, you need to do more than just put on your "listening face".  You must turn off your mental chatter and focus on the other person.  Stop thinking about your to-do list.  Don't think ahead to what you will say when they stop talking.
  3. Interrupting - As a person is speaking or thinking, you cut him or her off to present your line of thinking.  This behavior clearly conveys a lack of respect for the other person's point of view.
So the next time you are engaged in a conversation, use these tips to focus on listening to what the other person is really saying.  You will be amazed by what you hear!

Three Small Steps for Big Wins

March 27, 2013
Have you ever noticed that when your confidence is low, you downplay your strengths and overemphasize your flaws?  Or, that when you feel small, you act small, or not at all?  When this happens your self-esteem and confidence plummets and the cycle sends you spiraling downward until you feel as if you are a loser - a lost cause.

That simply is not true.  You have gifts, attributes, and skills that are uniquely yours.  And if you look back over your life, you will find that you have exp...
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Getting Out of Our Comfort Zone

February 12, 2013

We all have our comfort zone, a world where we feel comfortable and safe.  We are at ease in our routine surroundings, job, community, and relationships.  But here's the catch - in our ever-changing world, life inside our comfort zone will still be tossed and turned.  If we are not prepared to change with the pace of our world, we will find ourselves stuck, or worse, left behind.

Here's a good example.  Depending on your age, you have had to make changes to the way you listen to music...
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How to be a Risk Taker Even When You're Scared

August 31, 2012
Don't you admire risk takers--especially when they win or give a thrilling performance?  There's something exciting about someone who takes a chance - the person who has courage to start a business in a down economy, a football team that goes for the two point conversion to win the game, or those that put it all on the line to get what they want.  These folks seem fearless.

How about you?  What was the last risk you took?  What risk did you not take?  Fear is one of the biggest culprit...
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Calm Down and Carry On

August 3, 2012

Do you ever feel so overwhelmed or stressed that you can't think straight?  Do you have days when your mind feels so cluttered that you can't fit in another chore, project or appointment even if you wanted to?

When our minds are filled with worry, stress and overwhelm, we operate from an emotional part of our mind that prevents us from making decisions or taking actions that serve our best interest.  It is easy to lose confidence during stressful times.  We just don't know which way to ...
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Just Who Do You Think You Are?

June 28, 2012
Have you ever had an idea, a dream, or a sudden burst of confidence to try something new, only to be reeled in by your internal voice that says, "Who do you think you are?"?  All of a sudden we find ourselves in a tug-of-war between our confident, forward moving self and the other self--the one who holds us back by causing us to question our ability. 

You've heard those voices say things like:

You always start a new project and never finish it.
You tried something like this before and failed.  ...

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Is It Time To Kick Some "Buts"?

May 31, 2012

Are you a dreamer, a doer or both?  Is your head in the clouds, full of ideas, are you able to plant your feet on the ground and take action?  Confident people let their imagination soar with possibilities and have the courage to take action.

If you find yourself dreaming big but acting small, you might need to kick some "buts" that hold you back.

Test yourself.  Think of a dream, big or small.  Do you have any "buts" holding you back?
  • "But I don't have enough time.."
  • "But there's n...

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Give Everyone an "A"

February 8, 2012
The book, The Art Of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life, by Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander, talks about a concept called "giving an A" which suggests that we simply choose the perspective of seeing everyone, including ourselves as having great potential.

People rise (or fall) to our level of expectation.  Imagine what would happen if you gave an A to anyone and everyone--your spouse, children, employer, co-workers--even strangers.

It is easy to fall into the hab...
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You Are Making An Impact As A Leader

January 30, 2012

According to, the origin of the word “impact” comes from the Latin word impingere, which means “to push against.” The online dictionary has three definitions of impact that relate directly to the concept of leadership impact:

1) “influence; effect,”

2) “the force exerted by a new idea, concept, technology, or ideology,” and

3) “the power of making a strong, immediate impression....

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My Faith Has Been Restored

January 29, 2012

Wow!  I just had a great customer service experience and I still can’t believe it.  I’m still reeling!   I won’t bore you with all the nitty gritty details but just suffice it to say that my belief in good customer service has been restored.

I have been worried lately that people just don’t seem to care anymore.  Whether it was getting no response from a client who missed an appointment (after many repeated atte...

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