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014 Are You a Target for Criticism?

Who among us has not felt the sting of personal criticism?  Criticism of our ideas, our beliefs, or the decisions we’ve made. This form of human communication strikes at the very heart of self-confidence shattering our defenses and insidiously makes us an accomplice in questioning our own choices.  It’s an assault on our emotions which,…

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013 The Art of Effective Listening

One of the most popular classes I teach in my People Skills 101 course is a session I call The Art of Effective Listening.  Listening is the other half of communication.  Yet unfortunately, we tend to overlook this component since we often confuse the word “listen” with the word “hear.” Hearing is the ability to…

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012 Am I Making a Difference for Posterity?

Today we return for the second in our 3-part series exploring the fundamental need to make a difference in the lives of others.  (CLICK HERE to read Part 1)  And in this episode we’re going to consider two fundamental approaches for affecting a change that has far-reaching implications. The first of these is when we…

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011 This Day We Sailed On

Recently, in looking through the “Reflections” section of my Thinking Companion, a quotation I’d entered several months ago caught my eye. This statement was a recurring entry from the ship’s log of Christopher Columbus during his epic voyage of discovery in 1492.  “This day we sailed on.” Day after seemingly unproductive day, contending with dwindling…

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010 Am I Making a Difference?

Virtually every young person I encounter has the same two answers when asked the question, What do you want to do with your life?”  The first is, “Well, I don’t really know.”  And the second is, “…but I want to do something to help people.” Whenever we help another person, either through benefit of our…

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009 Where Do I Fit In?

From early adolescence we begin to ask the question, Where do I fit in? First it’s fitting in with the right crowd at school, having the right clothes, and generally doing our best to look cool.  Then it’s about going to the right schools, getting the right job or career, and doing whatever else is…

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008 5 Words to Never Use

Language is a fascinating subject for study since it is the primary means by which we humans communicate. And, as I’ve been emphasizing in my last few posts, the diversity of knowledge we communicate, and the way in which we do it, are direct measures of the success we will achieve in life. In today’s…

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007 How to Use Words That Influence

Exactly when humans first voiced repetitive sounds that evolved into words is a controversial topic. But one thing we can know for sure is that words and language developed side-by-side with hierarchical social structure.  Some individuals began to give orders, and others began to follow. And with that, the concept of influence was born! Today…

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006 How to Create a Thinking Companion

Have you ever been in a business meeting, or even a casual conversation, where it seemed that some wise words would be appropriate… but you just didn’t have any wise words at hand?  Well, take heart!  There is a way to increase your store of supportive responses in both your speaking and your writing, and…

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005 Feed the Mind Daily

There’s a verse in the book of Romans of the Christian Bible that begins “And be not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind…” This is a succinct introduction to the subject of today’s discussion since this phrase “Be not conformed to this world…” underscores the fact that…

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