Wednesday, November 16, 2011


so last night i went to a mentor training that might have been a game changer in regard to how i deal with people in general. there were three steps of how to make others feel important and learn to move toward solving their own problems.
one i had already learned, giving descriptive praise. instead of "great job" tell someone they did a very well on a specific task, why it was important, and how it will affect the future. such as: you did a great job of helping me distribute bags for the food drive today, that is the first step in making sure families less fortunate than ours have a good Thanksgiving.
next was asking permission before blurting out advice or similar experiences. "can i give you my advice/opinion?" or "i had a similar experience, would you like to hear about it?" instead of seeming like i'm trying to top you with my experience.

finally, the most mind blowing. get ready. "Behind every complaint is a commitment for something better." if you really listen to the things people complain about (beyond "im cold" and "im hungry") you can actually learn the things they are really committed to. if they complain about money and you investigate a little more it could be that they cannot afford ____, which conflicts with their commitment to _____. when you've figured out the commitment, you'll know because the person's face will brighten a little. and when you reinforce the importance of that commitment it will reinspire them to solve the problem they're complaining about.

perhaps i'll read this tomorrow and roll my eyes. perhaps you're rolling your eyes now, but im really feeling energized about this and cannot wait to enact it.

in other news, i am three books short of reaching my 2011 resolution of reading 15 books. any suggestions?


  1. Hey, this is actually super helpful! I'll be giving journalistic writing workshops this weekend and I'll be sure to try out a few of those tips on my students. Thanks, Val! :)

  2. glad someone got something out of this besides me! hope you're doing well!