Imagine the scene: you have a coffee meeting on your calendar with a few people you haven’t seen in a while. Your morning got off to a crazy start. You rush to the meeting with your mind reeling about your huge to-do list and packed day ahead. You get to the coffee shop almost on time, feeling both relieved and panicked.
As you sit down, you hear some ask “how are you?”, and the first thing that comes out of your mouth is “busy”.
Every day you have countless conversations. These conversations are HUGE opportunities to move forward, to share the best of yourself with the world, and to open yourself to new and unexpected opportunities.
Make sure you wow others with your contributions, points of view, solutions, or well worded challenges that the other person may be able to help you with!
Watch the video: https://youtu.be/DxLaQKDax8c
There’s a lot going on. I get it! But do you want to be just another person saying “I’m busy”? When someone says “I’m busy” to you, what’s your reaction? Neutral at best?! Are you impressed and excited to hear more?
Language tweak: Instead of saying “I’m busy”, you can say “there’s so much great stuff going on right now. One of the things I’m most excited about is ______.” You fill in the blank.
You can talk about the new business you’re starting, a challenging project you’re working on, how you final cracked the code to lose 10 pounds, the wonderful day you spent with your kids and/or spouse doing something you all love, your new meditation practice.
Whatever it is, make it authentic to you. Give the person asking the question a feel for who you are and what lights you up. You’ll be amazed at the conversations and opportunities that come from this small tweak in your language!
“I don’t have time” is the close cousin to “I’m busy”. Have you ever said something like “wow I had a great run today”. The person you’re talking to says “run – good for you – I don’t have time to exercise!”?
Do you want to continue the conversation? Probably not!
So why do you say “I don’t have time” when someone asks you if or when you’ll do something? Don’t deny it. “I don’t have time” has slipped out of your mouth recently. And, you’ve probably thought it many more times. (I know I have!)
Language tweak: Instead of saying “I don’t have time”, say “right now I haven’t made _____ a top priority”.
Here’s an example. Someone asks you where you’re going on your next vacation. You are working on a huge project with a deadline in 3 months and can’t imagine taking a vacation.
Say “right now going on a vacation isn’t a top priority for me because I have a really exciting project to finish. But, as soon as it’s done I’m going to plan a vacation. I’m interested in some destination ideas. What’s the coolest place you’ve been lately?”
Please wipe “I can’t” out of your vocabulary! It saps the power out of you! “I can’t” implies that you aren’t able to solve problems, don’t hold yourself personally accountable, and that you make excuses.
Language tweak: Say “I choose” instead of “I can’t”. This is incredibly empowering and will help you see very quickly the choices you are making, good and bad.
Hope is a great thing. Sometimes all a person has is hope. Reserve hope for monumental challenges in your life.
However, hope is often used in other types of challenges like “I hope I can lose 5 pounds” or “I hope I can complete the project on time” or “I hope this is OK with you”. Qualifying goals you have or decisions you’ve made with hope makes you look like you aren’t committed to results.
Think about it like this. Say you’re working with someone and you ask her if she’ll finish her part of a project by the deadline and she says “I hope”. You automatically don’t trust that she’ll finish. You’re in panic mode and aren’t thinking very highly of her!
Language tweak: Instead of saying “I hope”, just drop it all together. Say “I’m working on losing 5 pounds” or “I have concerns about the project timing. Let’s talk about it to make sure any potential issues are dealt with.” Sounds more confident and together, right?!
And be careful about using hope with yourself. Hope implies that an outside force is going to bestow a result on you. You need to make decisions that align with the desired result. If you don’t, no amount of hope or faith are going to do the trick!
Starting your point of view with a qualifier like “you might think this is _______”, erodes the influence of your point of view. People are focused on whether or not they think your idea is weird, controversial, etc., instead of your idea!
Language tweak: Just drop the qualifier and give your point of view the attention it deserves!
Tweak your language when you’re talking to others AND when you’re talking to yourself, and your influence and respect will skyrocket!
Like this post? Check out www.carriesechel.com for tools, information, and inspiration to bring huge value, make and impact, and live a life you love!
Carrie Sechel is a coach, bestselling author, and entrepreneur. Through her transformation programs and community, Carrie guides clients to discover their most powerful attributes and use them to not only love life, but also to drive their greatest value, lead, and impact the world.
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