Anxiety is not Intuition

Anxiety is not intuition. Worry doesn’t make you more productive.

Planning for how you will handle situations gets you ready for whatever will come. Worrying only focuses on what might or might not happen if you don’t plan.

Take out a plain piece of paper and a marker or pencil. In the center write your goal or problem to solve. Circle it. Draw branches out from the circle, each with a topic to think through. Make extra notes using smaller branches for each of the topics. Only use single words or short phrases.

What you drew is a mind map. The process you went though on paper helps your brain explore and investigate ideas such as how to solve a particular problem. Try mind mapping the next time you are grappling with a problem.

This is my TedX talk about mind mapping with nearly a million views:

What Life Learning Can You Share?

Share something you have learned in your life as a gift of curiosity and knowledge.

It will be a gift to yourself at the same time as to the other person.

When you share a lesson you learned, and this can be a practical,

how-to-do or something you realized not to do, they learn from your experience.

At the same time time, your learning gets deeper as you figure out how to explain and create understanding without the direct experience.

This not about ‘shoulds’, as you tell the story about how you learned. Bring the other person into your thought process, your curiosity, your hard lesson, if necessary. Let them visualize what it would have been like if they were there with you or instead of you.

Stories are memorable. Stories give the listener the chance to decide.

Your Needs and Wants

What is the difference between Needs and Wants?

We all mix them up. Imagine for a moment you’re looking to buy a new car. What do you need? Something reliable, decent gas mileage, seats one, or maybe 4, what else? Do you need it to have fast acceleration? Do you need it to be a color you like, maybe even bright red? Do you need a snazzy convertible that makes you feel on top of the world?

So wants and needs get mixed up in our head.

A need is something that must be fixed, a problem that requires solving, a pain that requires fixing.

Wants are desires, preferences, attractions.

And if you can satisfy both your wants and needs at the same time, do it, and be aware of the difference and the double win.

Leaders keep their eyes on their vision, strategy, and mission

Your vision, mission, and strategy

Vision is the big, long term goal for an individual or an organization.  Strategy is the “How.”  How will you achieve the vision or at least keep moving solidly towards it.  Mission describes the daily processes and behaviors that focus on the vision and apply the strategy.

TEDxNaperville November 9

I will be there coaching anyone interested in learning how to use mind mapping to take notes during the TED talks so that you remember what you want to remember.

Women need to understand what they are doing that undermines their authority

Women need to change what they are doing that undermines their authority

It is not just the power stance, though that is a good way to stand when talking to others at work.

Stand up when someone comes into your office.  It serves 2 purposes.  First it will keep the other person from acting like you have all the time in the world to listen to them.  Second, they are not looking down at you.

Train yourself not to end your statements as a question.  There are two ways women do this that undermines their authority.  First they end with OK? or right? or some time of question that means you are asking if what you said is ok with them.  Second, even if you don’t make it an obvious question, you use the question tone of voice at the end of you sentence.  You might want to record yourself and listen.

Back to the power stance, feet separated about a foot or foot and a half, facing the other person directly.  Don’t cross your legs or lean on anything.  Look directly at them.  Make eye contact.

BTW, this is true for men, too.  It just is observed more often in women.

Critical Thinking & Emotional Intelligence

Critical Thinking and Emotional Intelligence

I just read that these 2 skills are in short supply.  I teach both of them online.  The great thing about taking a course in one of those subjects with others, most of whom you are meeting for the first time, is that alternate viewpoints are a big part of both subjects.  Being part of a group and hearing from people with very different backgrounds allows you to open your thinking and ask open questions, both of which can improve your critical thinking and emotional intelligence.

Give that talk without PowerPoint

How to give a great talk without PowerPoint

Have you noticed that your eyes often glaze over and your mind wanders as someone gets up in front of your business meeting with another deck of typical bullet pointed slides? How can you avoid being the next boring speaker?

If you pride yourself on your analytical thinking you have a double whammy because your business associates, your audience, most likely want you to be short and to the point. Get to the conclusion. Keep the data charts out. Executive summary please!

If you would like to know how to be the most appreciated speaker at your next meeting by using mind mapping instead of graphs and bullet points, let me know. I’ll teach you how. To get started you can watch my TedX talk

I will be at TEDxNaperville again this year on Saturday November 9. Please come over and say hello.

John Baldoni’s new book, Grace

John Baldoni as quoted in Skip Prichard’s newsletter:

“Purpose begins – as many have said –with our why. Purpose is the answer to, “What gets you up in the morning?” From purpose comes vision and mission. Vision is an aspiration; it is our becoming. Mission is our doing; it is our building. And here’s where grace enters the picture. Grace is our how.”

In more typical business terms our how can be considered our strategy.

Writing down a strategy without a clear vision and mission is like Alice wandering in Wonderland. Having a Vision and/or Mission without a strategy is like looking at a great photograph of a scene without any desire to experience it first hand.

Find Your Solutions in Understanding the Problem

“Every problem has in it the seeds of its own solution. If you don’t have any problems, you don’t get any seeds.” -Norman Vincent Peale

Dig into the problem itself before beginning work or even brainstorming a solution. Einstein said if he only had an hour to solve a problem, he would spend 55 minutes on understanding the problem.

Socrates believed in asking lots of questions of anyone who came to him with a problem to solve, rather than offering a solution.

I coach business managers to let their team know to bring multiple options or ideas to them, not just the problem, and not just one option.

As N.V. Peale said, the seeds for a solution are in your deep understanding of the problem.