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Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Public Speaking

What are some of the tips for better public speaking? Overcome your fear of public speaking and become a better public speaker with these simple tips for public speaking.

Tip 1 - Speak in a Loud and Clear Voice

This is so simple and obvious that it is often forgotten. People have the instinctive fear of public speaking and tend to have the tendency to speak more softely when we are scared.

Speaking confidently in a loud and clear voice is a simple, yet difficult tip to achieve.

Tip 2 - Speak at a Reasonable pace and use Appropriate Pauses

Some people ramble on too fast while others speak too slowly. We should all endevour to speak at a reasonable pace.

Do not be afraid to use appropriate pauses to emphasize certain points as well as to think about your next point.

Tip 3 - Use Hand Gestures

Public speaking in from of an audience does not involve the voice alone. Hand gestures are important as well.

Good use of hand gestures help to add emphasis to the speaker's important points as well as make the speech more interesting.

Tip 4 - Talk Candidly (if possible)

I was watching a good speaker talk about his points when halfway through his speech, he mentioned that he had drifted away from his points. Thats when it hit me! The truely great speakers do not speak from a memorized script. They just speak from the top of their head.

Speak just as if you were talking to a friend.

Follow these four tips in order to become a more effective public speaker.

If you have enjoyed this post, do bookmark it or subscribe to the feed. Thanks.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

I Love You

I Love You.

Three words that have transcended emotional core of the human race.

I Love You.

Three words that have transformed the of human history. Three words that can move armies and change the face of human destiny. Three words that can touch lives.

Falling in Love

Falling in love is one of life's great experiences. Everyone wants to be in love. No matter where we are in our lives or what else might occupy our time, we all wish to have someone to love and someone who will love us in return.

Love is...

So what is love? Love refers to emotions and experiences related to a sense of strong affection and attachment. Relating to the phase "I love you", love usually refers to a deep, ineffable feeling of tenderly caring for another person.

When we feel that special feeling for someone else, we tend to want to say that special three words to the other person. We think of the other person all the time. It floods our minds and occupies our fleeting thoughts. That special person and those three special words, "I love you".

Love in a Relationship

In a relationship, differences between men and women may cause friction within a loving relationship. For example, a women wants to feel loved and cherished but the man will want to feel competent and respected. Not recognizing such differences might result in problems later in a relationship.

Similarly, recognizing such needs and desires early on can help both parties fulfill each other's needs and desires in a relationship resulted in strengthen bonds and ties.

Love Equals Giving

Pure love is giving by its nature. When a person showers his or her partner with the warmth and tenderness of love, his or her partner will instinctively feel the desire to reciprocate. This creates a positive feedback loop of love and affection. Thus, we should all strive to shower our partners with as much love and affection as possible.

Relationships need Constant Love

Relationships require nourishment in order to grow and develop. Just like plants that require water and sunlight, similarly, our relationships also require constant nourishment and care to flourish. Shower your partner with love and affection, such as affirming your love by saying "I love you".

I wish you a lifetime of endless love and happiness with whoever he or she may be.

Here are some resources that are related to the words "I love you"

Love Quotes from Free Famous Quotes
I Love You in Different Languages
21 Reasons why I Love You
The Art of Seduction from Amazon.com
How to Write a Love Letter from Amazon.com

Monday, September 7, 2009

Pleasure and Pain in Human Behaviour

Why do you do the things that you do? Why do you go to work, or relax in front of the television, or meet up with some friends?

What is the motivational factor that drives all human behaviour?

The answer is actually very simple. World renounded success coach Anthony Robbins in his book Awaken the Giant Within has the answer.

We do things in order to avoid pain, as well as to gain pleasure. Let me repeat that again. We do things to to avoid pain and/or to gain pleasure. That sounds so simple that it clouds the deep truth and profound wisdom in the answer.

This provides the answer as to why different people may do different things or have different values. Let me provide an example. Why do some people smoke, but others frown upon it?

This is because the people who smoke link tremendous pleasure to this activity, such as the feeling of being "cool" or "hip". However, other people may link tremendous pain to the activity, such as coughing, or getting lung cancer.

The point that i am trying to make is, all of us are driven by the need to gain pleasure, as well as the need to avoid pain.

Understanding this principle will allow you to become more understanding and empathetic to the actions and behaviors of other people. If can also help you to improve the quality of your own life by getting you to take action on the things that you know that you need to do.

For example, we all seek to improve our relationships with our loved ones, but not everybody makes the effort to spend time with them. We know that we seek to improve our relationships, because of the pleasure and good feelings that we get when our relationships are strong.

However, we do not act on this instinct as this feeling of pleasure is overwhelmed by the even greater feeling of immediate pleasure that playing a video game or watching some television may bring.

What we need to do is to try to strengthen our associations between pleasure and relationships, as well as to link some pain into not having strong relationships.

Think of what it might feel like to be distant to your loved ones, and you might find that this might motivate you to put in the necessary effort in your relationships or whatever you want to achieve in your life.

The pain and pleasure principle is extremely simple yet powerful. Understanding this principle and applying it in your daily life will not only allow you to change your behaviour, it will also allow you to improve the quality of your life.

If you are interested in reading more about Anthony Robbins, you might also enjoy some quotes by Anthony Robbins
If you are interesting in reading more about human needs, you might enjoy my post about Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Make the Other Person Feel Important and do it Sincerely

How to make people like you instantly.

In my previous post "How to Win Friends and Influence People", we have explored the first five ways to make people like you, and they are

1. Become genuinely interested in other people.
2. Smile.
3. Remember that a person's name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.
4. Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves.
5. Talk in terms of the other person's interests.

In this post, we will explore the one all important law of human conduct. This law will bring us countless friends and constant happiness if followed, and endless trouble if broken. The law is,

Always Make the Other Person Feel Important

As humans, all of us crave to be appreciated. I am not referring to cheap insincere flattery here, but honest sincere appreciation.

The truth is that almost everybody that you meet feel that they are superior to you in some way. Why not let them realize in a subtle way that you recognise their importance and recognise it sincerely.

Show Respect to Others

Always show respect to others. Fill your vocabulary with phases such as "I'm sorry to trouble you," "Would you be so kind as to -" "Won't you please?" "Would you mind" and "Thank you."

Little courtesies like these grease the gears of everyday life and make our daily existance a nice and smoother one.

As humans, we should do our best to try and radiate a little happiness and pass on a bit of honest appreciation to others, even if we do not get anything in return. The fact that you managed to make someone feel a tiny bit better about themselves is reward enough.

Why not say something nice to somebody else. It could be a family member, a friend, or even a complete stranger. Make the other person feel important, and do it sincerely.

Make someone else happy, today.

If you enjoyed this post, don't forget to subscribe or bookmark it! :)

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Relationship Advice

'After being in a successful relationship for almost 2 years and on the verge of getting married, I thought I would share some important relationship advice on how to maintain a strong relationship with your partner.

1) Be Understanding –

Relationships have their ups and downs. No two people are perfect, and everybody is different. You should not expect your partner to share your point of view for all things.

The key is to try to be understanding to the other person’s feelings and to try to take the other person’s point of view. Compromise. Adopt the other person’s point of view more often and you should see more improvement in your relationships.

2) Make the Extra Effort –

Relationships don’t sustain themselves automatically. A plant requires nourishment and sunlight to grow, similarly, relationships require lots of nurturing for them to develop and grow. And all of this nurturing requires lots of time and extra effort for them to develop.

In life, we often times take our closest loved ones for granted, and don’t put in the necessary time to develop our relationships with them. Do make the extra effort to make time for your loved ones today.

3) Be Interesting (Or at least try to be interesting)
In many relationships, couples fall into a rut of doing the same things again and again. That coupled with the stagnation as a result of familiarity results in boredom in a relationship.

Periodically do something different or interesting to excite your partner. Go for a weekend getaway, do something nice for your partner for no reason. Avoid falling into that mundane ruet that many couples tend to fall into.

Relationships in an important aspect of our lives and we need to take the effort to nature them. These three simple relationship advice may require some effort to follow, but might provide much more joy and satisfaction to your relationships.

You might also enjoy some Funny Dating Quotes.
You might also enjoy the post: "Can Money Really Buy Happiness?"

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Become a People Person at Work


The most difficult thing about working in an office is often not the job itself, but dealing with other people. This is the main reason why most job requirements these days have requirements such as

- The ability to relate to people of all levels
- Have a good team spirit and a pleasant personality
- Able to work independently and good people management skills

- Good communication & interpersonal skills
- Able to communicate well and able to work with people from various levels

From these actual sample job requirements above, it is clear good interpersonal communication skills is a essential requirement of the modern day corporate executive.

Here are some helpful tips that might be helpful in the workplace.

• Do treat your co-workers with respect

Treat your coworkers as your equals, no matter what their position within your organization. All people are equal; they just have different jobs. The way you treat other people is important in building interpersonal relationships.

Believe in this and believe in this each and every working day. You will develop a network of co-workers whom like and respect you in turn.

• Do keep your promises

If you say you will do something, then do it. People will need to depend upon you and the deadlines to which you commit. Again, it is a matter of developing trust. Similarly, when working on a project together, always put forth your best effort. Be the person who is willing to go that extra mile to strengthen the collaboration and the outcome or product.

• Do exhibit total professionalism at work

Never participate in the gossip of co-workers behind their backs. People will only trust you and if they know that what they tell you is safe in your hands. Cooporation at work only works when trust is present.

Similarly, never back-stab or blind-side a co-worker. If you have a problem with their actions, talk to that person directly and in private.

If you let your ally down, you could spend years redeveloping the relationship, if trust at the prior level is ever again even possible. Resolve any conflicts or disputes at the earliest opportunity. Unresolved conflict festers just under the surface in organizations. Unresolved conflict undermines alliance-building and mutual, purposeful progress toward accomplishing personal and organizational missions.

• Do your job well

If you do your job well, and with sincerity, you will succeed. You will not need office politics to help you succeed (or at least need it to a much less extent). Therefore, do your job well, and hopefully you will influence other people at your workplace to do likewise.

Effective communication forms the foundation for positive working relationships. Open lines of communication keep information, opinions and support flowing.

Put yourself in the shoes of your colleagues and respect their point of view which may be different from your own. Treat your co-workers with respect and keep your promises. Resolve any conflicts or disputes at the earliest opportunity, and do your job well.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Persuasion Tactics Simplified


Interested in using simple tactics to persuade others?

If you were a product development manager who was interested in raising the sales of your product, what would you do? Would you give the consumer more choices to choose from?

Logically, the more choices given to a customer, the better the expected sales. However, do you know that offering people more might make them want it less?

According to research conducted by behavioral scientist Sheena Lyengar, employees of a given company were asked to select mutual funds for a voluntary retirement plan.

The results show that the more mutual funds choices that the employees were given, the lower was the participation rate. When only two funds were offered, the level of participation was about 75%. However, when fifty nine funds were offered, the level of participation dropped down to about 60%.

This counter-intuitive result stems from the fact that when people are offered too many choices, this frustrates the decision making process, resulting in a reduced interest in the product.

This phenomenon transcends itself in supermarkets as well. According to an experiement conducted at a local supermarket, when the number of flavors of jams was reduced from twenty-four to six, the percentage of people who actually made a purchase increased from 3 percent to 30 percent.

This simple persuasion strategy appears in advertisement as well.

In a study conducted by Michaela Wanke, students were asked to compare an ad for BMW that states:

"BMW or Mercedes? There are many reasons to choose a BMW. Can you name 10?"

against a slightly modified ad

"BMW or Mercedes? There are many reasons to choose a BMW. Can you name ONE?"

Afterward, the students were asked to give their opinions about BMW and Mercedes. Surprisingly, the first advertisement that asked for 10 reasons resulted in generally lower evaluations of BMW and higher evaluations of Mercedes compared to the modified ad.

So, what is the reason for this result?

It is speculated that when the students were asked to come up with only a single reason for the BMW, they had an easier task as compared to the more difficult task of naming ten reasons. Hence, rather than using the number of reasons to evaluate the car brands, the participants instead based their judgment on the ease or difficulty of the assigned task to make their selection.

This result reinforces the main idea of this post, which is often times, the most effective persuasion tactic or strategy is the more simpler one. People inherently like easy solutions in life. Simplify your persuasive arguments by leaving out all the unnecessary clutter and just present the clear facts and simple alternatives.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

The Persuasion Power of Social Proof

In my previous post, "The Art of Persuasion", we have gained an understanding of the importance of persuasion.

In this post, we look at harnessing the power of social proof in increasing the effectiveness of your persuasion.

Firstly, what is "Social Proof"? Wikipedia states that social proof is is a psychological phenomenon that occurs in ambiguous social situations when people are unable to determine the appropriate mode of behavior.

It means that in many common situations such as shopping at a supermarket, driving in a traffic jam or browsing at a public library, people will pick up social cues on the appropriate response based on the actions of others.

This phenomenon assumes that surrounding people possess more knowledge about the situation, and will deem the behavior of others as appropriate or better informed.

Social influence in general can lead to conformity of large groups of individuals in either correct or mistaken choices, a phenomenon sometimes referred to as herd behavior.

Many different examples of social proof exist. For example:

Certain nightclubs and bars employ social proof in an effective manner in order to increase the popularity of their venues.

By deliberately reducing the rate of entry, this artificially causes the line to be longer, thus customers might perceive this long line as a positive signal of the place's desirability. This might be the case while in fact the venue might be mediocre and nowhere near its full capacity.

Similarly, television shows and theaters use social proof to increase the effectiveness of their offerings.

Television shows increase the perceived "funniness" of a show by merely playing canned laughter at key "funny" moments.

Theaters similarly sometimes use audience members, specially planted within the audience who are instructed to give ovations at pre-arranged times. Such ovations might be perceived by non-expert audience members as signals of the performance's quality.

Now that we have established the existence and validity of social proof, how can we use social proof to improve the persuasiveness of our arguments? To learn how the large organizations use this, let us look at a few examples.

When you pass by a nearby McDonalds, you might notice a sign stating "Billions and billions served" The local KFC advertisement at my area states that "Millions of taste buds can't be wrong". These advertisements use the power of social proof to persuade others to take a desired course of action.

There is little doubt that other people's behavior is a powerful source of social influence. Do take advance of the persuasive power of the herd. It costs very little to apply, and all it takes is to change a few words in your advertisement, speech or argument.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Art of Persuasion

In the art of persuasion, there is a small and simple word that everybody craves.

The word is "yes".

Just because that yes is simple and understandable, that does not mean that we should be fooled into believing that anybody can obtain it easily from another person.

In Robert Cialdini's book Influence: Science and Practice, he talks about the six universal principles of social influence. Let us take a look at what these six principles are.

1) Reciprocation - The feeling of obligation to return favours performed for us.

2) Authority - Looking towards the guidance of experts to show us the way.

3) Commitment/Consistency - The feeling that each individual has of acting consistently with their own commitments and values.

4) Scarcity - The less available a resource, the more people will want it.

5) Liking - The more we like a person, the more we want to say yes to them.

6) Social Proof - Looking to the behaviour of others to guide ones behaviour.

These six principles act as the foundation for the majority of successful social influence strategies. Aside from these six factors, there are also many other persuasion techniques that are based on psychological factors.

Everyone persuades for a living. There is no way around it. Whether if you are a sales professional, an entrepreneur, or even a stay at home parent, if you are unable to convince others to your way of thinking, you will be constantly left behind.

Donald Trump said it best, "Study the art of persuasion. Practice it. Develop an understanding of its profound value across all aspects of life."

In upcoming posts, we will be looking at some tips and strategies that each and everyone of us can utilise in our everyday lives to influence and persuade.

The Persuasion Power of Social Proof

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Talk in terms of the other person's interests

In Dale Carnegie's international best seller, How to Win Friends and Influence People, we have seen how we can become more likable by Become Genuinely Interested in Other People.

In this post, we will build upon this post by exploring the aspect of talking in terms of the other person's interests.

To be successful in relationships, a person will need to learn to talk in terms of the other person's interests. This rule holds true in many instances from social situations where you are meeting someone for the very first time, to married couples.

We cannot achieve this if we have no idea what the other person truly values, cares about or is really interested in.

Let the other person do most of the talking by asking questions and them listening to them actively and connecting with them at the level of what they value. You should have a genuine interest in the other person. Then, and only then, can you sincerely talk in terms of the other person’s interest.

Similarly, this piece of advice even holds true when giving a speech: The speech isn’t about you. It isn’t even about your expertise. It’s about your audience and how they can benefit from what you say.

According to Howard Z. Herzig, a leader in the field of employee communications, talking in terms of the other person's interests pays off for both parties. When you take the time and effort to find out what interests the person you are speaking to, the reward will be an enlargement of your life each time you speak to someone.

You've probably heard of the Golden Rule, which is "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." Why not apply this rule to the area of interpersonal communication? Author Tony Allesandra has come up with the Platinum Rule, which is "Treat others the way they want to be treated." This is an important rule that can help guide the way in which you treat others.

This article is one of the six ways to make people like you as mentioned in Dale Carnegie's book How to Win Friends and Influence People. If you enjoyed this post, do bookmark this post or subscribe to this blog.

If you like this article, you might also enjoy

Fundamental Techniques in Handling People
1. Don't criticize, condemn or complain.
2. Give honest and sincere appreciation.
3. Arouse in the other person an eager want.

Six ways to make people like you

2. Smile.
3. Remember that a person's name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.
4. Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves.