Archive for the ‘Stress Management’ Category

I Got It! #31 Coping With Change?

Tuesday, May 8th, 2012

How does one transition from a job they love to a new stage in life? That question has been circulating in my head for the past two years. Today I go public with my thoughts. I am no longer accepting new speaking and workshop opportunities. I am happily fulfilling the obligations I have for the 2012 year and passing my work to a talented woman who will bring her wealth of experience, knowledge and  sensitivity to the role.

It is a strange feeling to be declining work and not actively seeking more. For those of you who run your own business you will understand. We never know when the next opportunity will arise so to to say no or talk about change to clients, who you trust and enjoy working with, is scary!   And while it is sometimes daunting, it also feels right to me.

What will I do? Once a writer, always a writer so I will write and look for new ways to promote my book Got It! What will I write? So many ideas… to settle on one right now is impossible. Will it is be a book? Probably not in the form of my others. What form? Humm…good question.

Why now? Why not! So over the next months I will write about “the change.”  It just might help me crystallize  “what next.”

 

I Got It! #25 Sharpen Your Listening Skills

Friday, July 29th, 2011

When I hear clients recounting negative interactions with others I often say, when in doubt, say nothing. When upset it is best to listen and before answering or commenting, think before you speak. As many before have said, “you can’t regret something you haven’t said.”  When you do speak, think about your body language, your tone and then the actual words.

Saying ‘should have’, ‘can’t because’ you never’ or ‘you always’ will lead you down a path that is not good for your soul or your career. Each day we make a choice about how we will communicate. Only you have that power. Use it wisely.

Remember what Abraham Lincoln said, “It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt.”

I Got It! #24 Can’t Get A Direct Answer? Quick Communication Tips

Saturday, July 16th, 2011

Doesn’t it drive you crazy when people won’t give you a direct answer? People who use noncommittal language such as ‘perhaps’, ‘maybe’ or ‘sometime’ are often avoiding being honest. For the receiver of the message you don’t get closure or direction. What can you do? Try phrases like “When you say ‘maybe’ what exactly do you mean?”  They may hedge so ask another more specific question like, ” What conditions would need to be met for you to be able to say yes?”  or “When you say ‘perhaps’ you are telling me you haven’t come to a decision yet.  Am I correct?” Then  you could say ” When will you be ready to decide?” or “What will it take for you to decide?” Then stop talking, look the person in the eye and wait for an answer.

The most difficult part is to wait for an answer. Sometimes if the person says “I don’t know” you can look at them and say “what would the answer be if you did know?” Your face must match your concern for an honest answer. While not perfect, I’ve tried this and it often works. Good luck!

I Got It! #23 Ice Breakers for Groups

Thursday, June 9th, 2011

I am preparing a hand-out for a talk I’m giving and decided to put together my favourite ice breakers. They are large and small group activities that promote fun-learning. Some help listening skills, how it feels when change happens and ways to find common ground with a group. Here is an easy one. If you would like the hand-out please subscribe to my newsletter and I’ll be happy to send them out.

What’s In Your Wallet?
Choose one item in your purse, briefcase or wallet.
Tell your partner why that item is significant to you.

I Got It! #22 Are You a Tired, Frustrated Family Cargiver?

Thursday, June 2nd, 2011

June 2011

Communicating with elderly parents or chronically ill partners is tricky. We have history, an already established pecking order and all of a sudden what has been a comfortable relationship becomes increasingly uncomfortable. We are no longer cared for, we become the caregiver. We have to make unpopular decisions. As one of my friends said, “Now, when I leave my parents I either feel guilty or upset.”

A caregiver is a family member or friend who provides unpaid care for a loved one living with challenges due to disability, illness, or aging. The Canadian Caregiver Coalition estimates there are 4.5 million caregivers today. (more…)

I Got It! #19 looking For A Book Club Idea?

Monday, April 18th, 2011

When you write a book you can never guess who will contact you or what parts resonate with readers.

I just had a phone call from a woman who used my just released book Got It! as her selection for the discussion. She said it was perfect because of the questions at the end of each chapter plus it only took her two hours to read. A couple of members hadn’t read it but could still participate as they could skim a couple of chapters quickly.

Each member had chosen a favourite chapter. The one that most chose was the one about authentic people and their favourite question to answer was “Who makes you exhausted and why?”  The next favourite was “Box Up Your Worries.”

Do you have a book club? What kinds of books do you enjoy?

I Got It! #18 Want To Be Inspired?

Monday, April 11th, 2011

I just chatted with a fellow writer Erica Jefferson. She was interviewing me for one of her upcoming shows. She was delightful. Her voice was animated and full of life and I loved her accent. Funny thing, she asked me where I was from as she could hear my accent too! Made me think how quickly we draw impressions, even when we can’t see a person.

What message are we giving off when we speak to someone? Are we enthusiastic and engaged? Are we good listeners or are we waiting for our turn to talk? Interesting thoughts for a Monday.

If you would like to learn more about Erica you can go to her website at http://www.beinspired-online.com/home/meet-the-founder/

Happy Monday!

I Got It! #13 Looking for Ways to Lower Stress, Save Time and Improve Relationships?

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011

Writing Got It! 21 Tips Communication Tips for Busy People and seeing it to completion takes patience – never one of my strong points. I like to do things quickly and move to the next. To think that at the end of August I had the book complete and 7 months later, it is finally out. I wasn’t sitting still during that time. It will soon be on Amazon and in the Kindle format.

There was lots to do. A group of my friends read the book and gave feedback, then there was editing, rewriting, approvals, checking and rechecking. Thinking about the cover design and title and working with a designer was interesting.  Then approving what words would go on the back cover, looking at the lay out and where there needed to be text breaks all took time and careful thought.

Plus because this is a joint venture I was working with a fantastic team at Strategic Book Group so again, others with much more knowledge in many of these areas than I have were part of the decisions. I enjoyed the fact we were a team and I had others working with me. My last book was self-published so I was on my own and the first book I wrote was with a publisher and I had very little control so this has been a new experience.

I still haven’t held Got It! in my hand. I can’t wait. Soon, very soon.

I Got It! #12 Want to Increase Health and Work Performance?

Sunday, February 20th, 2011

Unless you let people know that specific actions or words are upsetting you, they might never know. Our self talk can poison our hearts and heads and impair our work. When I am coaching, people will often tell me about hurts that were inflicted days,weeks or even years ago. I will ask, “does this person know you were upset?” Often the answer is “I would if I were them!” That’s not good enough.

The truth is that often someone has said or done something and your interpretation is quite different than what they meant.  They may have thought they were supporting you, or giving you some help or guidance and you have taken it to mean something different. You might have interpreted it that they didn’t think you were capable of specific work or they were showing you how much better they are than you.

If you were to stop and ask them, “why did you step in and help,” the answer may be surprising. They may have thought you were asking for help and so to support you they helped.  Too often we jump to a negative conclusion and then are upset about something that the other person hasn’t even thought about.

Another client told me her boss was mad at her and she didn’t know why. I asked how she knew and her answer was, “she doesn’t stop by anymore.”  I suggested she make an appointment with her boss and ask if everything was going okay.  She did and found out her boss thought she was so capable that she was letting her carry on with out interference.

So before you begin to stress about a situation, ask for clarification. Be honest and direct. Your life will be much better. If there is an issue you can fix it. Stop inflicting the present with yesterday’s pain.

I Got It! #11 Did Your Know Negativity in the Workplace Costs Millions?

Monday, August 23rd, 2010

If  you think ignoring negative Nellie or negative Nathan will make them go away, think again! Many negative people don’t even realize they are negative and they can suck the life out of you.

While we are all negative sometimes, there are people who have made it their life’s work. If you are a manager you must confront this behaviour because negativity can cost your organization millions, if not billions, of dollars each year. It can lead to increased turnover, customer complaints, errors, accidents, and illness.

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