The gorgeous and talented Amanda Rose is guest blogging this week with a wonderful story about how you can use words to change your mindset and achieve great things in your career.
“Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me!” Remember that popular childhood recitation?
Well, guess what? It’s not true. The truth is words are powerful. After all, they are our primary tools of communication, and though they do fade in our memories over time, their impact can be long lasting. Maya Angelou, poet and author put it this way, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” So words do matter, specifically, our own words – those we habitually use in conversation with ourselves and those we invite into our consciousness or choose to internalise, can have a profound impact on the quality of our life experiences – reflecting what we think and believe about ourselves in relation to every situation and feeding into how we feel and behave; ultimately influencing the results and outcomes we create and experience.
You may have heard the story of two salesmen sent by their company (an international shoe manufacturer) to a remote village in Africa to assess its potential as a target market. The first salesman sends a telegram that reads, “Situation hopeless STOP No one wears shoes STOP.” The second salesman’s telegram reads:, “Fantastic potential STOP No one wears shoes STOP.”
“Words do two major things: They provide food for the mind and create light for understanding and awareness” – Jim Rohn
My work with clients over the years has unearthed so many words and phrases that don’t do us any favours. You know them -”can’t”, “should”, “shouldn’t”, “have to”, “I’m too this”, “I’m too that”, “It’s too late”, “I’ve never been good at…”, you’re probably thinking of your own favourites right now. How do they make you feel? Not great…I know.
So, here just one month into this new year, as your attention is on the goals you may have set yourself for your current role, or returning to work after a career break, or perhaps making that career change you’ve been thinking about for some time, consider this – does your vocabulary need a detox in order to get you in better mental shape and take you closer to who and where you want to be in 2017? What language will empower you, encourage you, propel you forward, invite you to step up, to show up and to be all that you know you can be in your work, life and relationships? Why not take some time over the next few days to reflect on this and see which words and phrases emerge and what special meaning they hold for you and your circumstances? Kay White, author of The A to Z of Being Understood, suggests that choosing four or five words brings a certain rhythm and you may also notice an interactivity between them.
This is a great way to start a new year, a new season or indeed, a new phase in life or work. If it helps, think about words that define you, inspire you, or those that describe how you will sustain yourself, your non-negotiable professional and personal values and perhaps others about your place in the world. When you’ve chosen yours, commit them to paper, perhaps in a journal, or on post it notes placed strategically around your home or office for regular visual reminders. Also think about how you will use this new language to convey key messages about yourself, your work, your passions and your purpose through your CV, at interview and in your social and professional interactions.
I’ve chosen mine that reflect what I want my work and life to be about this year:
These are the words I will hold close and reflect on regularly as I seek to stay on course for the rest of 2017. They come together something like this – I have faith to believe that when I choose activities, people, places and things that inspire me, I will in turn, inspire others, serve with passion and make myself available to unlimited possibilities.
And the laughter, you ask? Well that’s just because for me it’s the best medicine.
Now it’s your turn!
©Amanda Rose, CareerTree. February 2017.
Amanda is an experienced Coach and Mentor, and Co-Founder of CareerTree. She has significant experience in helping women to think through, plan for and manage the many and varied career related issues they face. She is passionate about motivating, empowering and enabling women to achieve their personal and professional goals.
Amanda can be contacted at [email protected]