Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Remember Names

Often people will excuse themselves by saying: "I remember faces but not names." The folly of this remark is apparent: If you can remember faces, you can remember names. The trick is to connect the face and name in your mind. Here are some suggestions:
  1. Listen intently the first time the name is said. Make sure you have heard it correctly.
  2. Repeat the name several times in your mind.
  3. Use it as often as possible in immediate and subsequent converstaions.
  4. Cement the name together with the face through association. Look for some outstanding feature of the person's face. Then mentally exaggerate that feature or use your imagination to conjure up some indelible image (the more ridiculous, the better).

-Page 80 of "The art of talking so that people will Listen" by author Paul W. Swets

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Take control of what you say

The following strategies are designed to help you gain greater control over what you say and how you say it:

  • Check to see if the listener understand. Encourage questions. Never stifle the listener with "Stupid!" or the like. Ask, "Am I making myself clear?" "Do you know what I mean?"

  • Think before you speak. Avoid hasty generalizations. Ask yourself if there is a clear, reasonable connection between your statements.

  • Say precisely what you mean. Don't expect your listener to understand a hidden message. If the hidden message is worth saying, dare to say it clearly.

  • Try not to repeat. Condense your message and avoid speaking for more than a minute at a time.

  • Ask yourself, "How am I making the other person feel? Would I like to feel that way? How could I have said that better?" Become aware that put down messages are usually damaging not only to communication, but to the other's self-esteem as well.

  • Listen to the tone quality and volume of your voice. Is it harsh, too loud, irritating? Modulate your voice so it sounds pleasing to you. Do not speak louder than necessary.

  • Consider your body and facial expressions. Check them in a mirror if possible. Ask yourself, "How is what I'm saying coming through? Am I tense? Do I look worried, uncertain, angry?"

-Page 60 of "The art of talking so that people will Listen" by Paul W. Swets foreword by Norman Vincent Peale

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Get in the Happiness Habit

Accept responsibility for your happiness and take control of your life. Decide to make happiness a habit.
By Joel Osteen

Many people don't realize that much of the manner in which we approach life-our attitudes and our demeanor-is learned behavior. These habits have been formed by repetition throughout the years. If we've spent years focusing on what's wrong rather than what's right, then these negative patterns are going to keep us from enjoying our lives.
We acquired many of our habits from our parents or the people who were around us as we grew up. Studies tell us that negative parents raise negative children. If your parents focused more on what was wrong, living stressed-out, uptight or discouraged, there's a good possibility that you have developed some of those same negative mindsets.

-Page 79 of "Success Magazine: August 2009 (Energy to the POWER of Monavie Edition)" article written by Joel Osteen.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Know when to keep silent

Silence communicates, but the messages vary. The silence of retreat is the sulking attitude which says, "I don't need to talk to you. I'll just think my own thoughts and isolate myself from you." The silence of anger is the attempt to get even, to lash out by keeping thoughts within, to refuse to give one the pleasure of company. Then there is the silence of awkwardness which almost shouts, "Help! Let me out of here! I don't know what to say! Somebody say something!" There is also the silence of support. Instead of filling up time with small talk, that silence says: "I want to know how you feel about yourself, your failures, your accomplishments, your future plans." What a great experience to be on the other end of that kind of silence!

-Page 50 of "The art of talking so that people will Listen" by Paul W. Swets foreword by Norman Vincent Peale
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