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Archive for the ‘Listening’ Category

Have you ever been double booked or invited to two exciting things on exactly the same date?   Frustrating hey!  I have been invited to speak on the Ann Diamond show – BBC Berkshire at 12.00 today with Maria Millar MP.  Re: ” How to Get Women in Senior Positions and Influence.”  However I already have an important meeting with a new client today which I am excited about.   Keeping your commitments is important to maintain your credibility and reputation.   I do love doing the inspirational talks and debates but it just as important to me to demonstrate practically what I do best.  Showing others how to succeed in their professional roles . For business, my paying clients are critical for enabling me to share my knowledge with a wider audience.  For which I am grateful.   How about making your  lunch time priority the Ann Diamond show today?  http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/playlive/bbc_radio_berkshire/

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Here is the next insight to the second step that you can take to be a professional wonder woman and keep your sanity.

Step 2: Find Confidence in Your Worth

Women who are successful are not blind to the global financial problems or the barriers that they face.

They just don’t see them as permanent.  Life goes in cycles.  Eventually this time will pass.  Be ready for the upturn in the economy.

I have found that the area of self worth and value is the most difficult for women. 

Here are 5 simple actions that you can do now: 

  1. Be alone, quiet and still for 20 minutes.  What is your inner voice saying to you…? 
  2. If there is a critical voice, quieten it down and soften it. 
  3. Replace critical thoughts with a confident state (my guide will show you how) 
  4. Counteract criticism of yourself by remembering actions that you have taken that demonstrates the opposite. 
  5. Act the part

“There are many times that I sat in the board of directors meetings looking at a complicated set of figures and didn’t know what I was even looking at.  But I put on a good show.  Somehow I’d pull it off.  Afterwards I would ring a good friend who was a whiz at figures and learn for the next time.”

Did you know that women who love what they do and are earning high salaries feel afraid and nervous and have self doubt but do not let these feelings stop them?  In other words, they feel the fear and do it anyway.  They push beyond their comfort zone. 

 “Success rarely comes to the passive or pessimistic”  – Barbara Stanny – Leading Authority on Women and Money

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Step 1 – Clear your mind

Before having a conversation, think about the other person.  Ask yourself, “How can I connect fully with what this person is about to say.”   Keep your mind open, free from preconceived ideas or assumptions of what they might say.

Step 2 – Listen

Listen to the words they are using, their tone of voice and body language.  Concentrate on the messages they are conveying.   Skilful listening is critical in understanding what messages are being communicated.

Step 3 – Demonstrate that you understand

It is important to communicate that you understand what they have said and the messages they are portraying through their body language and tone of voice by repeating back some of their exact words.  Say something like, “That’s a really good point you made about….”

Step 4 – Find similarities

Bring into the conversation areas where you both see “eye to eye”, common themes, subjects or observations.

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I hear so many stories of people who are caused stress because another person has failed to sensitively communicate with them.  Misunderstandings create mistrust, anxiety and often false assumptions about the other person’s motives. “They just wanted to belittle me”, when the real reason was they were overly concerned about getting their own point across or they wanted to hide their insecurities so they came over as cold and heartless.

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Key 1

Truly appreciating the person or persons, eg commenting on the person’s qualities or making a comment to let the person know you have listened to their point of view or found something that is similar.

Key 2

Listening with an open mind and heart – to understand what they are saying and what they are feeling, eg withholding judgement.

Key 3

Be prepared to explain and discuss your views and beliefs.  Be willing to challenge your own beliefs.  Are they based on sound principals or are they beliefs with very little substance?

Key 4

Demonstrate that you understand their views.  Find common ground.   What are you willing to sacrifice – to give up?

Be prepared to speak, be open, honest and show your true self. 

Key 5

Keep your promises.   This engenders trust.  Show you care. Find ways to demonstrate that you care by doing something unexpected for the person.

Remember that it is a human need for people to be recognised, appreciated and understood – even if their behaviour tells us the opposite!

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When we listen empathically, people feel understood and it changes the dynamics of the communication.  We are creating positive energy to enable both parties to seek consensus.  The most powerful communication is when we understand fully first, before trying to put our own views forward.  It takes patience and self control. 

This does not mean that we remain passive in the conversation.  You have set the scene for having the best chance to be heard.

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It is important to listen to the messages our emotions are trying to communicate to us.  If a situation keeps repeating itself, eg if we are constantly late for meetings, or people seem to dump on us, or we keep promising ourselves we will take more exercise, or lose weight, but it never happens, then it is time to find out what is going on!

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