The 10 Things All Trustworthy, Trust-Generating Pros Do

 

You can’t be everything to everyone,

but you can be something great for someone. 

Arielle Jackson

 

 

Although I only play miniature golf I had the privilege to speak at the Titleist Performance World Golf Summit. I spoke on how coaches, trainers and teachers can create trust between themselves and their clients.

 

I explained that no matter what your field trust springs up when your client believes that you “see” and understand them.

 

In my talk I highlighted the basic communication skills that go into creating trust: listening, managing emotions, understanding your biases and using well-chosen words.

 

Since that talk, I’ve recognized a marked difference between those who are able to create a trusting relationship and those who seem robotic. Yes, clearly there’s a difference in communication skills BUT there’s also that “something else.”

 

I’m now convinced that the “something else” hovers around whether the coach, teacher, healer (substitute “manager” or “leader”) trusts their own individual self – trusts not just their professional skill set, but trusts their own person and their ability to enter into a relationship with others.

 

In order to establish trust with your client you need to trust your own self.

 

What does it mean to trust your own self?

 

While it’s about being “confident”, it’s about more than confidence. When you trust your self certain observable things happen – or at least, you’re willing to let happen.

 

Trusting yourself means that you –

 

  1. Believe what you’re doing is worthwhile and you’re committed to the job. Golf legend Scott Foley said it best: “I’m here to touch the individual lives of the people that I work with. I was raised on the idea that when you wake up in the morning and when you go to bed at night the goal is to leave the world in a better place than you found it.” 
  2. Readily and willingly make yourself vulnerable and are not easily embarrassed.
  3. Experience empathy for what your client is feeling, thinking.
  4. Respect failure and mistakes and so are patient because you know the process demands it.
  5. Convey knowledge and competency with a non-arrogant alertness so that a potential problem is addressed with, “here’s how we’ll handle it.”
  6. Telegraph joy in what you’re doing through a palpable sense of liveliness, exchange and laughter.
  7. Focus on the client and are not self-absorbed because the on-going dynamic of the relationship is paramount.
  8. Understand the inherent power of story – realizing that a command of facts alone doesn’t generate trust.
  9. Go about your business rooted in the belief that the ultimate goal is to hear a client say, “I hadn’t thought of that before.” It’s all about discovery.
  10. Are grateful – for the skill, the client, the opportunity. Everything rests on this.  Seriously, have you ever met an ingrate you trusted?  How can there be trust without gratitude?

 

I think these ten traits flow from being able to answer the most basic and simple of questions: “Who do I want to be?”

 

Answer that question and you will inevitably come to trust yourself – and so create a trusting relationship with your clients.

 

A recent client of mine told me that he wants to be known for five characteristics: Intriguing / interesting / powerful / knowledgeable / humble.

 

He believes that he is these words and also that he can become “more” of these words.

 

I’ve been working with him only a short while but I can see how those words mark him and why his business practice is getting noticed.

 

The truest of truths is that people will most trust you when you trust yourself. 

 

Why?  Because the more you trust yourself, the more you’ll –

  • trust your client
  • trust the process of the relationship
  • help the client trust him / her self

 

Trust is a circular experience.

 

A client or colleague trusts you when they believe you “see” them.

You can only see them when you see and trust yourself.

The more you trust yourself, the more you can help your client trust his or her own self. 

Help a client trust their own self and they will come to believe that they can “do it” – whatever skill that “it” might be.

 

Ultimately, the circle of trust begins with you.

There’s no magic to any of this, though when trust happens, it can be magical.

 

 

Do you want to break through the negative thinking that is preventing you from being influential and heard?

 

To explore how one-on-one communication skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence,

contact me at:

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

What Name Do You Call Yourself?

 

To have that sense of one’s intrinsic worth, which constitutes self-respect,

is potentially to have everything.

Joan Didion

 

 

I don’t know my paternal grandfather’s first name. His birth certificate says, “John”, but his baptismal certificate says, “James” while his death certificate says, “Joseph.”

 

He was thirty-three when he died and my father, his son, was just seven. Oddly, my father never could recall his father’s name and nor could my grandmother, even though she’d been married to the man!

 

The “JP” of my name stands for “Joseph Patrick.”

 

I’m named after my father, but my mother hated both names. My dad insisted, though, that I be named after him. However, he never called me “JP.”

 

He called me “Bobby.” Lambs were painted on my crib and because a lamb goes “bah-bah,” he called me “BaBa” when I was growing up. In high school, he slurred it into “Bobby.”

I come from a family that doesn’t have strong loyalty to names!

 

Yet, there is power to a name.

 

Recently, Roxanne, a new client, came to me distraught – she’s been out of work for several years and feels hopeless.

 

She said, “I don’t know any more who I am.  I’ve lost my dream and I don’t know how to get it back.”

 

I asked her to tell me who she had been before she lost her job.

 

Agitated, she said that she couldn’t remember.

 

And then, she poignantly muttered, “I don’t know if I really ever had a sense of ‘me’.”  She went on to say, “I’m a loser.”

 

I’m coaching Ron, another client, in public speaking. He’s intelligent, accomplished, respected and valued as a professional resource by his peers.

 

He downplays that reality by maintaining, “I am a fraud.”

 

When he speaks, he talks fast because he doesn’t think he’s worthy of people’s attention.  He’s afraid that people will see him for the imposter that he believes he is.

 

I think it’s easy for a person to lose sight of who they are – of who they once wanted to be – and of who they could become.

 

The TV private eye Remington Steele famously claimed, “I am who I believe myself to be.”

 

Whether you’re a fictional character or a real person, I think that belief influences just about everything in a person’s life!

 

Roxanne believes she’s a “loser” and Ron thinks he’s a “fraud.”

 

I know, though, that she’s not a loser and he’s not a fraud.

Yet, they insist on labeling themselves with names that don’t accurately reflect the reality of who they are.

 

Motivational guru Brian Tracy urges people to,

“Never say anything about yourself you do not want to come true.”

 

What name do you give yourself?

Who do you believe yourself to be?

Is it a belief that gives you life or that sabotages your life?

 

Do you want to break through the negative thinking that is preventing you from being influential and heard?

To explore how one-on-one communication skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence,

contact me at:

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

 

This One Precious Day!

 

The aim of life is to live, and to live means to be aware,

joyously, drunkenly, serenely, divinely aware.

Henry Miller

 

I recently came across this reflection snippet from Danielle LaPorte.

I don’t know the context from which this comes, but it has grabbed my imagination and challenged me to ask myself,

what am I doing in this moment and will it eventually benefit someone?

I don’t know the context from which this comes, but it has grabbed my imagination and challenged me to ask myself, “what am I doing in this moment and will it eventually benefit someone?”

 

Read this and see if you’re similarly challenged. . .

 

Right Now:

  • Someone you haven’t met yet is already dreaming of adoring you.
  • Someone is writing a book that you will read in the next two years that will change how you look at life.
  • Millions of children are assuming that everything is amazing and will always be that way.
  • Someone is in profound pain, and a few months from now, they’ll be thriving like never before. They just can’t see it from where they’re at.
  • Someone has recently cracked open their joyous, genuine nature because they did the hard work of hauling years of oppression off of their psyche—this luminous juju is floating in the ether, and is accessible to you.
  • Someone is genuinely forgiving the seemingly unforgivable.
  • Someone is curing the incurable.

 

What are YOU doing Right Now?!

 

Do you want to be more in the moment right now

so as to develop and nurture successful professional relationships?

To explore how business skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence – and joy

please contact me

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

 

What I Learned This Summer

 

Life is change. Growth is optional. Choose wisely.

Anonymous

 

This past week I finished teaching an eleven-week course at UCLA Extension on “The Dynamics Of Interpersonal Communication.”

 

It was a remarkable experience for many reasons – and since I haven’t received the class evaluations, I’m presuming that my students also enjoyed the course!

 

There were twenty-six participants, only four of whom were from the U.S. They ranged in age from early twenties to late fifties. They came from Tunisia, Morocco, Romania, Italy, Sweden, Denmark, South Korea, France, India, China, Japan, Indonesia, Philippines and Mexico. For some, English was their third language.

 

On the first night, the room was quiet before start of class as each person was focused on their smart phone or tablet, ignoring the person just a desk away.

 

On the last night of class, the room was a chatter fest, as though these folks had known each other since pre-school.

 

What accounts for the radical change?

 

They learned how to have and enjoy a conversation. 

 

Simple as that!

 

I’m convinced that real learning takes place in a relaxed atmosphere conducive for conversation.

 

And so each week I’d give them ample opportunities to talk – in pairs and in small groupings.

 

I’d give them questions that sprung from exercises we’d do related to that night’s focus. No role-play – just conversation in which they had the opportunity to talk from their perspective.

 

In the talking, they surprised each other.

 

Most came to the course wanting to learn how to be confident when dealing with the stranger, especially in challenging, difficult situations.

 

While I taught about listening and emotional intelligence and conflict strategies, more than that I invited them to put down their phone and look at the person sitting next to them – not as a stranger, BUT as a person who just might be worth getting to know.

 

By the last night of class, they figured out how to allow themselves to be surprised with a new way of understanding others as well as their own self.

 

And what did they learn?

  • That most people come from families that baffle them.
  • That most people worry about “what will people think?”
  • That they’re not the only one uncomfortable speaking in public
  • That everyone longs to be more confident.
  • That everyone resists change – even if they say they don’t.
  • That learning comes from doing.

 

They learned the power of story – the power of conversation. 

 

And so they could not help but learn that each person, no matter where they’re from, shares three things in common –

 

Every one of us

loves someone

is afraid of something

has lost someone or some thing precious.

 

Ultimately, they learned, to quote motivational guru Rene Brown –

 

If I get to be myself, I belong. 

If I have to be like you, I fit in.

 

My students learned how to belong to an international tribe of learners!

 

Do you want to break through the negative thinking that is preventing you from being influential and heard?

To explore how one-on-one communication skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence,

contact me at:

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

Breaking Through Old Rituals That No Longer Work

 

What you risk reveals what you value.

Jeanette Winterson

 

My communication work is based in the belief that we all do what we do and say what we say for a reason.

 

No one “just is”. 

 

Flowing from that is my conviction that in every relationship, over time, we fall into dance steps, patterns for dealing with conflict as well as for expressing feelings, needs and desires.

 

The question, though, becomes – are those dance steps working for you or are they sabotaging you and your partner?

 

This past week I got an email from Pamela (names changed), a former client. She wrote:

 

Recently my boyfriend and I have really been working on our communication. For perhaps the very first time I noticed that when I’m upset and need to ask him something, I get very frustrated and then just explode into accusatory statements instead of explaining what I want or what I’m feeling.

 

Usually that sets off our “normal” fight of “YOU never – well, YOU never –” but this time I stopped and told him, “Look, I have a lot of trouble with this so can you please hug me and work with me instead of reacting to me?”

 

And he actually did!

It was an interesting moment for both of us.  He said to me, “Well, I never knew that. I thought you were just cruelly accusing me, doing your usual annoying girlfriend thing.”

 

We talked about ways I can bring up issues without waiting too long and then exploding.  And now he’s being less reactive to my tone and more understanding when I repeat something three times in a row – he gets that it’s because I’m having difficulty expressing my self and am caught in a “broken record mode.”

 

Now when I do that (which I did this morning), he just pretends to be a broken record too and we make it a joke between us.

 

I’m excited for Pamela and her boyfriend because of the good that has come about from their mutual kindness and determination to break a habit that chipped away at the quality of their life together.

 

Pamela’s boyfriend thought her lashing out was just a “girlfriend thing”.

 

It wasn’t.

 

However, it wasn’t until she came clean and actually asked him for what she needed that he was able to really understand what was going on.

This was a breakthrough moment in their relationship.

 

And, hey, never underestimate the power of a good hug!

 

Pamela reminds us that life really can be far simpler than we make it out to be!

 

 Do you want to break through the negative thinking that is preventing you from being influential and heard?

To explore how one-on-one communication skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence,

contact me at:

[email protected]

818-415-8115

 

Figuring Out What To Do When You Finally “Grow Up”!

Christmas in July – what can I say?!

 

Where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet. –

there you will find your vocation.

Frederick Buechner

Since January I’ve had four new clients approach me with the refrain, “I need help figuring out what I want to do when I grow-up!”

Each of these folks has graduated college (one is a post graduate) and each works at an established company. And each is deeply uncomfortable where they are in life.

So how do you figure out what to do when you “grow-up”?

The first thing is to acknowledge that you already ARE grown-up!

You are an adult – even if you may not always feel like one or act like one.

In addition, although you have a job or had a job, it’s critical to keep in mind that you are not your job – no matter what you do. 

You are the sum of your relationships and your obligations to those relationships, along with your feelings and beliefs, your spirituality and psychology, your values and habits.

All of that guides and influences what you do and how you do it and why you do it.

The legendary theologian John Henry Newman believed that “To live is to change, and to be perfect is to have changed often.”

When someone says they want to figure out what to do when they “grow up” they are muddling the issue because the issue is not “when I grow-up.”

The issue is – given that I am today this grown-up, how will I reinvent myself?

In the early years of my adult life I lived in a religious community and prepared for ordained ministry as a priest. When I resigned from ministry after twenty years of community life I had only a hazy notion of who I was. And, yes, that it is a startling thing to admit!

My therapist told me that I had to find new ways of being “priest.” That required I do things that would force me to become realistically acquainted with the skills and talents I’d acquired and had taken for granted. I had to experiment, try on, risk and reevaluate.

Reinvention doesn’t necessarily require new skills. It does, though, require you to be familiar with the skills you currently have and become comfortable using them in new and possibly unfamiliar ways.

So how do you reinvent yourself – now that you are grown-up?

 

Cristina Nehring in her book, A Vindication Of Love, writes that when she was in high school:

My English teacher told our class that the most important thing about life was to live it as if it were a good novel – as if, she said, it were a good film script. ‘Would audiences walk out during the movie of your life?’ She believes that by living ‘deliberately, gracefully, inventively, and fearlessly’ any one of us can be “a piece of art.” 

Here are 20 questions for you to rummage around in and grapple with

as you create the piece of art that is YOU

1.     In your present job, what skills do you enjoy putting to use? What comes easy to you?

2.     For what skills do you get your most compliments?

3.     When you last were looking for work, what had you really wanted to do?

4.     What or who pushed you into taking this job?

5.     How you think you’ll emotionally be if you remain in your current job for another five years? Ten years?

6.     What are the practical reasons for you remaining in your current job? How important are those needs? Are those needs really “needed”?

7.     Who else is involved in your decision to reinvent yourself?

8.     What needs do they have? What fears are attached to those needs?

9.     Is there a specific field you’re interested in? Does it require new training? Do you know anyone who is doing what you want to do? Do you know anyone who knows someone doing what you want to do?

10.  Are you most excited by the idea of a new job or by having the opportunity to use skills you currently under-use?

11.  Is there any place within your current company that would let you tap more into the skills you want to be immersed in?

12.  A dream job is just a dream without a strategy. Do you have a dream or a strategy? What does your strategy look like?

13.  How will your life be different in your new job? Is this new job crucial to making your life different in the way you imagine?

14.  What will you miss from your current job and do you think you’ll find it in your new one?

15.  How will the new job make you more “grown-up” than your current one? What “grown-up” responsibilities will you have in your new job that you don’t have in your current?

16.  How are you sabotaging yourself now and would those techniques carry over in whatever new job you take?

17.  Do you have a tolerance for ambiguity, along with a dose of patience and grit?

18.  Do you think you have what it takes to reinvent yourself?

19.  What is one skill you have that will come in handy as you reinvent yourself? One is one skill you need to develop?

20.  What do you want to be remembered for in this life? Will your future job help you be remembered for all the right reasons?

 

Answer these questions and you will have more insight into your next possible job and clarity into who you want to be, doing what you’ll be doing.

If you strategize with these questions, you will not just find a new job. You will experience transformation.

Leadership guru John Maxwell calls transformation the “journey to significance.” Significance, according to Maxwell, is all about adding value to people.

Angela Duckworth, author and expert on “grit” believes that, “Rather than ask, ‘What do I want to be when I grow up?’ ask, ‘In what way do I wish the world were different? What problem can I help solve?’ This puts the focus where it should be — on how you can serve other people.”

 

Deep. Yes, I know!

Going deep, though, is what adults do!

 

Do you want to help discovering who you want to be when you grow up?

 

To explore how life- skills coaching can help you live your life

 with enhanced confidence – and joy

please contact me

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

A Mid-Year Check-In

 

It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.

Confucious

 

It’s July and so we’re halfway through 2019. Soon Hallmark Card stores will be premiering their line of Christmas ornaments!

 

I thought of offering in this posting a review of the ten most important lessons I learned in 2018 with an eye on evaluating how they might help me navigate the rest of 2019.

 

However, as I reviewed my list, I realized there is really only one great lesson that I (and you) need to keep in mind through the remainder of this year.

 

And that tip?

 

“NO” doesn’t have to be the final answer.

 

Rejection doesn’t equate to the decimation of ideas, plans or dreams.

 

Throughout this year, I’ve been privy to the struggles of folks who have steadily plodded on until they reached their goals – even if, when reached, those goals looked differently from what they’d originally imagined.

 

Pat (name changed) is a comedy writer who came to LA from NYC with a TV writing gig. Within just months, the show folded and he was out of work and luck.

It was an unnerving time for him and his family. Do they return or not return to NYC?  Does he stick with comedy or play it safe? Pat had to face the reality that maybe he wouldn’t earn a living from writing funny words.

 

Pat decided to live his life “as if” he was employed as a comedy writer.

 

He set-up a schedule and committed to writing a certain number of jokes per day. He went on the rubber chicken circuit and submitted unsolicited jokes to late night shows.  He brought schmoozing to a whole new level. And he did all this in the face of bone-crushing doubt.

 

Today, you may very well be laughing at his late night jokes as he’s on staff with one of the late-night shows.

 

Five years ago my friend Melissa signed a contract with a major book publisher. Her first book was released April 2015. And it’s been re-launched in Canada with a new marketing push.

 

Hers was been a journey of more than twelve years. Twelve years of self-doubt, rejections and being faithful to the writing task.

 

Nancy contacted me several months ago. Among other things, she wanted to hire me for her company’s annual retreat; however, I was booked that weekend.

Last week she called again, wondering if by chance my weekend had opened up. Turns out, it had freed up as previous clients canceled their event.

 

Each of these people encountered “no’s” that had the ring of finality to them.

 

Yet, each person decided that “No” would not be the ultimate arbiter of reality.

 

Have you come up against any “No’s” in 2019?

Have plans and goals for 2019 been met with a NO?  

What can you do to gain traction on your goal beyond the NO?

 

 

Do you want to learn how to confidently live your life without letting other people’s NO derail your goals?

To explore how life-skills coaching can help you pursue and present you

with enhanced confidence – and joy

please contact me

  [email protected]

818-415-8115