Taking the time to thank your loved ones for their small acts of kindness goes a long way. It's a key to a good marriage, friendship or family.
Certainly, one spouse may do most of the cooking and the other take out the garbage, but sharing your appreciation of each other throughout the week can help keep the love alive. Making requests, rather than demands, is far more effective at keeping the love flowing.
Be Aware of Your Own Gratitude
Consider keeping a gratitude journal, where you record 5 things you are grateful for each day. Some days it may be your health, other days it may be your home and loved ones, sometimes it may be that you made it home safely after a grueling trip. What's important is to acknowledge verbally that you have been blessed. Some people prefer to do this once a week; either way is fine, so long as you acknowledge the good things in your life.
Gratitude teaches us not to take people or life for granted. It's one of the lessons the great late Christopher Reeves shared when he spoke- to appreciate every moment while you have it. He was a very smart man.
In Neuro- Linguistic Programming, the concept of matching styles means that if someone converses with you in a quiet, low key manner, you respond in kind, matching vocal tone, physical gestures and body posture. If they sit back with their arms crossed, you do the same. You don't mimick every gesture, but you match their style. The theory (based on decades of solid research from Bandler and Grinder) is that this builds rapport and makes the other person feel comfortable.
While this may seem artificial and awkward initially, there is great value in matching styles. It can be jarring to a quiet person to have an exuberant one approach them with lots of energy. (I know because I am usually the exuberant one!)
I have learned the hard way that moderating my energy, softening my tone and calming my enthusiasm can put the other individual at ease.
It's important to acknowledge that we are all different, and demonstrate respect for those differences, through your actions, physicality and words.
Meet people at the level where they are, and then gradually, bring the energy up together with shared enthusiasm. Then you are truly partnering and collaborating.
With the holidays upon us, it is easy to let family anxiety come between you and your spouse or partner. Emotional "junk" like anger, frustration, petty annoyances, can build up in your relationships when you are not willing to talk about the issues. Fear about seeing family members can intensify the tension.Then one day, you explode, because they have all accumulated.
Often, this has the exact opposite effect than what you wanted.
Your partner is usually shocked and hurt and feels like this came out of nowhere. The solution is to mention the little things as they show up, make requests and own your reactions to things. "I know this might sound petty, but it really bothers me when you leave the cap off the toothpaste. Could you please try to put it back it on?"
That is a reasonable request, shows your need and asks for a solution. Ask-. not demand. Share your feelings, explain what bothers you and don't blame. Encourage your spouse to share their petty annoyances, too and explain that your goal is to have a more loving relationship where stuff does not get in the way. If you clean up the little things as they arise, you won't have BIG problems later on.
I was out of the country this past week on vacation and returned home to two sad events. Cinderella Hubbard, (yes that was her real name) the woman who raised me, has passed away at age 93 after battling dementia. She was an amazing person who made a huge difference in my life. Cindy's goodness, loving, wisdom and values shaped my life in so many ways and I will never forget her. For a little girl with a dying mother, she provided the solid rock of love, faith and strength that I needed so much. She touched so many lives, especially at her church, where she was the oldest living member and the kindest. They called her 'Aunt Cindy'. More shocking was the sudden and tragic death of Denai Vaughn, a newer friend and fellow speaker. Killed in a car accident at the age of 37, Denai left behind a doting husband and young daughter, and a legion of fans.
Denai and I had one of those instant heart connections. We had a great deal in common, including a passion for making a difference. Her exuberant, joyful personality and friendly open approach drew people in. There's no surprise she was the Networking Queen.
Both of these women touched so many lives by the essence of who they were. They were kind and caring, filled with the joy of life, and shared themselves generously, leaving a legacy of love and gratitude for all who knew them.
What is your legacy? How do you want to be remembered? What will people think of after you have gone? Give some thought to what you are leaving behind and what you want to be known for. You never know when your time is up, so be grateful for every moment. I know I am grateful to have known these two extraordinary women. They blessed my life. How will you bless others?
In his new book, Social Intelligence, Daniel Goleman writes about recent brain research: "One person's inner state affects and drives the other person....We actually catch each other's emotions like a cold." The moresignificant the relationship is, the greater the impact on the other person. Our thoughts have tremendous power. The ramifications of this are interesting.
If you have annoying co-workers or employees, and you continue to think that they are obnoxious or rude, or whatever your belief system is about them, you will unconsciously be creating more of what you don't want in them. If, on the other hand, you start focusing on their good qualities, both inside yourself and verbally to them, you will help strengthen their positive characteristics and your relationship.
This has great implications for employer-employee relationships, wherea perceptive boss who becomes aware of her/his thoughts, can actually contribute to an employee's greater success... just by the way they think about that employee.
Thoughts are incredibly powerful, so monitor yours carefully and think about what you truly want to create in your life.
In today’s global market, smart businesses want to tap into the huge market on the Internet. Websites, ezines, blogs and webinars are just a few Internet vehicles for education and marketing.
But where you may run into trouble is in the grey area of SPAM. Recently, a client said he had access to 10,000 email names and could we send them all an e-blast postcard. The answer is very definitely NO! That would be considered SPAM and his website could be taken off the Internet. Why? E-marketing is only allowable if it is permission-based.
Everyone on my email newsletter list signed up for this ezine either on line, by giving me your card to enroll you, or by attending one of my speeches and completing the ezine form. That's permission, which you can revoke at any time by asking me to remove you from the list.
Before you start any kind of email campaign, be sure you have proof of permission to send the email and be sure your recipients want to hear from you. Many use a double opt-in feature, which confirms they have signed up for your ezine. Provide education, good content, and high value and you have a win-win marketing strategy.
When money is tight and you need new business, do three things. Continue to provide excellent service to your existing customers, far above what they pay for, ask how you can help them and then ask for referrals.
Check and make sure you have happy clients and when discussing how pleased they are, use that time to ask if they would be willing to spread the word about your product or service to colleagues or associates.
The key, according to referral expert Bill Cates, is to suggest where they might find prospects for referrals. Suggest: "Perhaps there is someone in your rotary club or church, your gym or chamber group." Then sit back and listen as they start to rattle off names and numbers. Write it all down, including the referrer's relationship to the prospect.
If they do give you referral prospects, follow-up immediately with the prospect and thank the referrer. Send them a handwritten note, a gift or referral fee to express your gratitude.
One of the hardest parts of any job is feeling like you are missing critical data you need. Sometimes that data is product and service-related and other times, it is personnel-related. Lately, it might be economy-related and you might not be sure you will have a job next week.
If you are in a situation where you don't know the guidelines, you don't understand the ramifications of a decision, or you're not sure of the politics, ask someone wise whom you trust (preferably someone higher up.) Explain that you sense there might be something more to a given issue, and that you would like the history of it. Ask if they could please share their perspective.
Then, make your decision from a more informed viewpoint. There are politics in every job, in every workplace. Some are minor and insignificant, others are insidious and unfortunately, critical to your success. Diplomacy and tact are key in every workplace, and thinking rather than reacting will serve you well. When in doubt, ask. It is far better than assuming, which can frequently get you in trouble.