Summer temperatures, racial tensions, police fear, terrorism, Brexit and our presumptive 2 Presidential candidates (out of 350 million people): all together make this an interestingly scary moment.
The internet brings us closer together. Often we don’t like what we see; “they” annoy and frighten us.
Without institutional filters like we had before (remember the 3 TV networks or even life before Chromecast?) events develop faster and are shared instantly.
This is our time. Your time. Our issues.
What you say and how you say it matters more than you think.
Emotions are contagious and the person with the most confidence wins the most impact.
Be that more confident person.
Be the one who sees the opportunity in the chaos, the one who knows a solution is out there and is confident we can solve it.
Only practicing (versus thinking about) gratitude facilitates vision for that opportunity because negative emotions and fixed assumptions blind you to what’s actually possible.
That’s why you consistently thank people for their specific contributions and efforts.
Be the one who appreciates reliable electricity and indoor plumbing, functional roads, property rights, freedom of speech (if endangered,) Starbucks and Trader Joe’s.
There are more people listening to what you say and using your communication as personal motivation. (Though it’s more secret than North Korea’s nuclear weapons facilities, some of your family members actually value what you say.)
There are people who remember something you said to them, of which you have zero recall.
(It’s a bizarre feeling when people thank you for saying X, and you never remember saying that.)
Be the person who sees the potential for excellence in others and shows them those great qualities that are curiously invisible to them.
Be that person who is so caught up in the conversation that you forget to worry about how you’re coming across.
When you forget about yourself, that’s when you’re most persuasive and interesting. Listening = ability to influence.
Be the person who is not afraid of seeing problems because you know that’s what builds our character and colors our life stories.
Be the person who neither seeks to be nor find victims in the situation.
Aside from being a colossal waste of time, playing the victim game only holds all the players back from moving forward.
Be the person who takes the “yes, and” approach. This is the person who avoids those false dichotomies (“either, or”) that develop into short-cuts for manipulating. Of course these fake dichotomies dominate mass media because over-simplistic points of view create such catchy sound bites. Recall Odysseus put wax in his ears not to hear the sirens; today we call them “news anchors.”
Motives are complex and points of view develop over time.
(If you work on a multicultural, international team, you may want to download free and instantly Top 8 Global Culture Tips for Business. It’s got loads of questions to help you integrate folks from different points of view.)
Be the one who isn’t afraid to say it. Whatever “it” is. You have built the relationships that give you the right to say what needs to be said.
Be the one who take the effort to prepare an audience to receive your message. You consider what people already know and how they feel about your topic. You realize that in sharing details about your project, less is often more, for most of your audiences.
Benefits are more compelling than features.
Brevity shows respect.
People who take care in choosing their words and how they present themselves and their viewpoints are considered the more intelligent and capable leaders. It’s your time.
If not you, then who? If not now, then when?