This past year has been the biggest one for me in a sense of personal growth and self development. I have always been a student of self development ready to learn more about myself and others and how they all interlock, but actually doing what you learn is a totally different story. Once I lifted the fear and really got to know and learn about myself - the good, the bad, and the evil, I was able to move. I was able to move with purpose and direction and become the person and health professional I always envisioned and wished to be. If I am most honest, I will tell you I still have a long way to go and I know the journey is never ending and ever changing!
If I want to be the person, the woman, the brand that others come to pursue their dreams in the health industry wether it is with Gaia Fit, Shaklee or both, I must be that person and I must not be afraid to be that person. I learned 3 Key Tools - Listen, Smile, Give. Yes, if you have taken any entrepreneurial class or workshop, these will sound very familiar to you. But until you go there really go there, they will not mean anything.
I went from a child and young adult too shy and nervous to speak my mind to an adult with a passion to change the world and made the mistake of what we call vomiting everything I know on everyone who would listen with out really listening to what they were looking for. When I stopped being afraid of silence and made my conversations about the other person, I started to listen. I have learned and continue to learn so much by listening. You can really help people when you just stop and listen. It is not about me and what I know. It is about them and what they need.
Have you ever seen those hysterical videos about "NBF" a.k.a natural bitch face? Wow! When I realized my natural every day happy face kind of, um, ok really looked like a NBF!? I started to smile a whole lot more. Now this is a life long habit and I think a bit of a family trait so it is taking time, but I am working on it, working real hard on it. When you start listening and becoming aware of others, you start to want to become a happy and genuine place for them to go and see and so you start to smile.
With the listening and smiling, you start to remember why you are doing what you do. You value it and want others to value it so you will give it. You stop counting on your fingers hours and minutes and seconds you worked with someone and you start to help and give them everything you can. Something I won't cover here (I'll save that for another professional post) is what must coincide with the giving is valuing yourself. Don't confuse giving value with providing your service for free to everyone you know. We all make that mistake in the beginning.
So, let's break it down and keep it simple.
My Top 3 Tools that will help your business soar:
Listen more than you talk. Yes, even in a profession of advice giving and teaching. People want to be heard. They want to know you care. They want you to treat them as an individual. Next conversation you have with a client, take a deep breathe, zip the lips and actually listen. You may have heard their story before, but they are not the person you spoke to this morning. What they have to say is unique to them and means something to them. It is personal. Believe it or not (and they might even not know this): they want you to listen more than they want your advice. Listening is the first step to showing you care.
Smile... and mean it. Smile when you are in person or on the phone. Smile when you greet someone for the first time or for the twentieth time. Smile when you are not working (just driving by in the car or riding by on your bicycle, at school pick-up, in the grocery store). Smile when you are having a bad day (it will even make you feel better).Even if it is just a small grin. A pleasant smile and a look in the eye that is genuine shows you care, you are listening, and you are approachable. Of course, be appropriate. There is nothing worse than a fake smile. If someone is talking about something very deep and emotional, you sitting with your fake grin on your face is going to show you are not listening, not present, and not real. A genuine smile with an intent ear goes a long way.
Give more than you expect to receive. It can be tiresome to think about, but when you stop calculating how many hours you spent with someone versus how much they paid you, your business will grow. Remember why you are in the health industry. Now don't go giving your services away to every Jane and Joe you see because then your services lose their value and the person will not value you or your services. However, when you provide a service, go above and beyond the written value of what is expected. People will appreciate it. They will recognize it. Yes, there are some who might not, but they are smaller and more far in-between than you realize when you Listen, Smile, and Give because you want to not because you are expecting something in return or getting paid to do so.
Go take the world by storm! Listen, Smile, Give!
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