3 Ways to Gain A Positive Outcome from A Conversation

One of the most natural acts for a human being like me and you is to socialise. We have conversations all day, every day. What surprises me is the fact that most people have no idea how to handle a conversation, or how to lead one properly. Today, I want to talk about 3 major ways how you can direct a conversation towards a positive outcome that you might be looking for. Do you want to maintain your rent? Using these 3 methods to discuss this with the landlord will increase your chances tremendously. All of these 3 ideas come from the book called How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie.

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Begin in A Friendly Way

Every conversation you ever have, be it to scold someone or to beg for something, should be started in a friendly way. This is the most basic skill of a successful conversationalist. Imagine that you are coming to one of your bosses to talk about your salary. What do you think will happen if you come up with an angry tone complaining that your coworkers are getting paid more for the same amount of job you do? What you hear is: “Boss, I have a family to feed, can you help me?” However, what your boss hears is: “Hey! You are the most unjust guy under the sun! How come you pay the others more than me?! You better increase my paycheck!” Always remember that starting a conversation is about making a good connection with the other person, which you can build on throughout the conversation. Don’t just get straight to the business, small talk matters. Utilise it to your advantage and get on a good side of the other person. Give a compliment, ask about the person’s mood and show that you care. This way, your conversations will become more positive and straight forward.

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Get The Other Person Saying “Yes, yes” Immediately

This ability builds up on the first skill I spoke about. Creating a positive environment around the conversation is very important. After starting the conversation in a friendly way, your next goal is to reinforce the fact that you mean good in the other person’s mind. You want to reinforce the idea that you both have the same purpose in the conversation, although the method might differ. You can do this through putting through some questions you know the other person will agree to – will actively say “yes.” For instance, if you are meeting your landlord to discuss your rent, you might want to start talking about how nice the place is. You can choose sentences like: “I really like this place, it must have taken a lot of effort decorating it, right?” Or if you know anything more in detail about the landlord, you could say: “I know that there are some other tenants that are quite hard to deal with, it must have been hard on you.” Choose the sentences that you know he will probably agree with. This way, he will start thinking – this guy is really good, he’s kind and I agree with most of what he says. This conclusion will make a huge difference in the landlord’s attitude towards your request later on.

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Let The Other Person Do A Great Deal of The Talking

Something that people love is to talk about their issues, about their views and about their experiences. Have you ever met someone who just threw up all his issues at you in the period of 10 minutes? People need to do that from time to time and the fact that you understand it and support it will make them love you. When you’re managing a conversation, ask a lot of questions and be patient with your answers. Let the other person finish completely and then ask questions to clarify or to expand on what they’ve already said. What this will do for you is that it will make them feel respected and appreciated, which gives you constant rapport and leniency from their side. In short, people should leave you happier than they were before they came to you and this is the way to achieve that.

Find Your Life Anchor – How to Stay Consistent When Life Happens

There is a question I have been always struggling to answer… What is the most common reason why people give up on their goals & dreams? However, in the last few months, I have been slowly uncovering the answer to this question. Now, I think I have finally found it. People give up because life happens. We all have our own goals & dreams, but we also have our own hardships & struggles. We always account for the hardships that are on the way leading to the target we’ve set up for ourselves. What we fail to account for are the hardships that happen outside of that path, in life. The fact that is the hardest to accept is that we can’t accurately predict and account for these issues. You can’t possibly account for a disease occurring in your family or for a financial bankruptcy of your close friend. Things like this will happen in life, so how can you prepare yourself for them so that you will be able to maintain your consistency on the way towards your dreams?

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Find Your Anchor

To successfully prevent our failure to cope with such issues, we need to create something in our lives that will hold us to our path and keep us accountable to ourselves. A something that makes you stick to your path no matter what, a something that helps you overcome any unexpected but inevitable issues that will occur in your life. We need to identify an anchor in our lives that will help to hold us close to our ambition, exactly like the anchor on the picture above holds the boat stuck to the bottom of the sea. In the next part of the article, I will talk about a few ways you can make this a reality for yourself.

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Find a reason why you should make it to the finish line

In many, many of our articles we mention the concept of the why. Why? Because it is the number one, central, most important concept that will make you stick to your path. Put very simply, if you know why you’re doing it, you are very likely to stick to it. This obviously involves many aspects of reminding yourself of your why and developing it further. Visualisation, spoken word and mentorship are a few aspects of this that will help you understand your why and stick to it.

Find someone you will be accountable to

In addition, mentorship not only provides you with the opportunity to cooperate with and learn from an already well-experienced individual but also to stay accountable to him. This is very well visible in many gyms, where you can get a personal coach. They will not only come up with a gameplan for you, talk to you about your goals and motivate you, they will also serve as an anchor for you. When you feel down, when you feel like you don’t want to work out today, you will think of your coach/mentor and you will make it happen. Assuming that you are a responsible and mature human being, the sense of accountability will keep you grounded and moving.

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Develop a daily routine of self-development

Having a strong habit in place that helps you grow as a person and that keeps you moving forward is something incredibly powerful. It keeps you grounded and motivated to move forward. What is the greatest issue with that? Many people have an issue developing this habit in the first place. So when their life starts going downhill, they don’t have anything to stick to. Dig your well before you’re thirsty. Develop a habit of reading, listening and associating with positive individuals every day. This will keep you on your path no matter the scale of the hardship you might be going through is.

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Always remember that the strongest anchors come from within. Your internal motivation beats your external motivation every second of the day. That’s a fact. Find your anchor and grow it. Screw safety plans, burn the ships and develop anchors instead. Move forward and never look back. And know that if you do, your anchors will turn your face forward again.

The Overlooked Power of Praise

The present generations have grown up in the world, where we are told what we shouldn’t do, how we shouldn’t behave or how negative our lives are. Hearing all these negative phrases and criticisms inevitably leads to something we call negative conditioning of our mind. We are lead to negativity by default. This is one of the reasons we tend to overlook something all of us can do, we tend to overlook the good stuff in others. We look for the negatives in people, we criticise. What we do very rarely is praise.  In this article, I want to focus on the power of praise, its effect on our relationships and more importantly on our own mind.

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The Negative Conditioning

As I mentioned in the introduction, most of us have been brought up in a negative environment. We go through our youth learning what is not meant to be done, what can never be achieved and what we need to focus on, although it might be something we really do not enjoy. The way modern society is set up is very alarming. In school, in the workplace, you are criticised whenever you do something that is outside of the norm (in a bad way). You are led to think inside the box, to follow the tradition and to keep your head down. Try to look back, how often have you been criticised for making a mistake? How often have you been praised for performing well? Most of us tend to focus on the negatives to “improve” our behaviour, but we fail to praise the positive, which is actually the factor that influences us the most.

The Power of Praise

So what should we change? According to the books Whale Done and How to Win Friends and Influence People, we need to start looking for the good people around us do and we should start bringing it up more often. Look for the good instead of the bad. Look for the small accomplishments you can praise people for and praise them! It is very unnatural for us since that is not how we have been taught to behave, but it brings miracles. How do you feel when someone tells you how amazingly you’ve completed your task? It feels great. And even more, it makes you want to improve and grow! Praise supports growth and improvement, thus it is a very good idea to praise even slight improvement because it will multiply the original result in the future. Additionally, the more positive you look for, the more positive you will see. The more positive you will see, the more positive you will accept into your life. The more positive you will accept into your life, the more positive you will attract. It is simple, the more you praise, the more will people want to be around you and the more you will want to be around yourself.

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Regarding the practical side of this concept, I have discussed different kinds of responses in this article. In short, there are different kinds of responses. You either ignore, you criticise, you praise or you redirect. The most common response is ignorance. The most useful responses are positive and redirection. Why redirection? Because it allows you to take the negative and turn it into praise.

Look for the good in people and in their actions. The greatest challenge for most of us will not be reducing criticism but strengthening praise. We love to ignore the positive, now we have to take a step forward and start praising it.

Be An Ambassador For Positivity

In our daily lives, we encounter situations where we have a choice to make. It’s a choice of response. In your workplace, what do you do when your team screws up? In your household, what do you do when your kids don’t do their homework? What do you do if they finish it well? All these situations might seem boringly common, but the reality is that the majority of people makes the less correct choices in such situations. How many times have you been yelled at in work? How many times have you been yelled at when you were a young rebellious kid? All of these experiences have framed your way of thinking. The truth is, most people have got a very bad understanding of how they should behave in such situations exactly because of the way they have been brought up. In this article, I want to utilise one of the concepts that is developed in a book called Whale Done, where the author tells a story of a manager who learns about how he should “motivate and treat” the people around him (including his team and his family) and how he should build healthier and more positive relationships.

 

Your Response

According to Ken Blanchard, there are 4 ways we can respond to any situation. No response, negative response, redirection and positive response. The two very well known responses would be the positive and the negative one. However, Blanchard argues that these are too simplistic and that there are 2 more responses that are less easily observable.

The first one is no response. The reason behind the complexity of this response is that it is the most frequent one we use without realising that we do. In most cases, when people do something well, they tend to be ignored, but they should be praised. This is a very common issue because the only way you can motivate someone to grow and perform better and better is through a very careful choice of your responses. We need to understand that no response is also a response. It creates a very passive behaviour of the subject because he or she did something well but is not seeing any appreciation – the subject does not treat the consequence of his/her behaviour with any special care and thus might not utilise it for the future. This is not how we should treat people when they behave well. They need to be praised and rewarded – they need to see our positive response.

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The second less understood response is the redirection. Redirection is a method of handling a negative situation by redirecting the energy or the attention of a person or an animal in a positive direction. What you can imagine behind that is trying to teach a og how to stay by your side. He sees another dog and there he goes. He has not stayed by your side. What you should not do is you should not scold him, you need to redirect his attention to something positive. You utilise other things you have practised before, you get to him and you show him a treat. You make him stick to you and you make him come a few steps with you. Then you give him a treat or you praise him. You have ignored his bad behaviour and you’ve turned the situation around. This is a very simple example. In the human case, you might have someone messing up in your work. What you should not do is you should not scold the person. You speak to him, you calmly explain that there has been a mistake and you take responsibility. After that, he will feel more comfortable and you can start focusing on how he can improve his performance. Scolding people does not work most of the times. Redirecting their attention is a different kind of story.

For a more detailed explanation, I highly recommend that you take a further look into the book Whale Good. In a very short summary, make sure that you understand that any reaction that you have will affect the person’s state of mind and your relationship. Focus on building a good relationship through positive responses and redirections and watch your relationships improve.

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Mind Your Mind

In the modern era, many of us live our lives in a hurry. We’re often in a state of anxiety that we’ll not make the deadline, that we’ll be late or that we’ll miss out. There is actually a term that is used to describe this state of mind – the syndrome of fear of missing out. The reason why many of us live this kind of life is that we don’t know how to handle our own mind. Many people have no idea about the subconscious mind, prioritization and re-focusing. There are loads of people simply flowing through life with no specific purpose, living from paycheck to paycheck, from deadline to deadline. This is because they have no idea how to control their own mind. They don’t know how to calm their mind and re-focus it. That is also what I want to talk about in today’s article. I’ll describe how I personally re-focus and how it has changed the way I live my life.

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The Art Of Refocusing

In the present times with all the different kinds of media around us, we hardly manage to focus on our true goals. Our focus is often disturbed by the terribly violent news from the war on the other side of the world or by that “scandal” of our favourite movie star on social media. This is a great issue because people fail to live the life they’d want to live and then regret not spending more time developing themselves or developing their relationships. There are 2 major exercises that can help anyone in this sense tremendously.

Warren Buffet’s Prioritization

Warren Buffet once shared an incredibly useful tip on how you can prioritize in a very simple way. All you have to do is to sit down, write down the 20 most important aims, goals, targets, objectives or dreams that you want to achieve in your life. Then you rank these from the most important ones to the least important ones. Once you’ve ranked them, you will pick out the top 3 and disregard the rest. This will help your focus tremendously because you will know what is important for you and what you should prioritize. Of course, that is only useful if you stick to these priorities and your focus doesn’t get interrupted by useless stuff (anything that doesn’t lead you to the success in your top 3 priorities).

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Refocusing

So what do I do when I have lost control over my focus again? This can happen, don’t be discouraged by that. What I personally do and what I would suggest you do as well is finding out something that calms you down, something that cuts all your attention to other attention seekers (not only people but also tasks) and that allows you to focus on yourself. In my case, I love to take a walk in nature. I put earphones in, listen to an audio talk and walk around. I learned to appreciate nature and calm my mind. This allows me to refocus on my real goals. When I get back from my walk, I am ready to kick ass again. In your case, you could find this peace elsewhere. Some people find their peace in running, some like to draw, some like to listen to music. You have to find what works for you. Additionally, understand that “just walking” in nature is not a waste of time, if you utilise it to your advantage.

The Influence Of Refocusing

This method helps me in handling multiple things at once. I run a business, an online brand and I am a university student. I can do all these because I know what to focus on, what to prioritize and what to disregard. Everything becomes very simple when you understand your priorities and how to take control of your focus. I like to think that I am very productive during my days, yet my days are not hectic at all. I stay calm throughout my day because I have figured out how to mind my own business. I have figured out how to mind my mind. Use these 2 techniques I spoke about to gain control of your focus and of your life. It is very simple, you only have to make that step forward. Best of luck!

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