#Colors Affect #Mood

July 12, 2020

© Carole Kanchier, PhD

How Colors Affect Mood and Performance

When I wore black to business meetings in San Francisco I was perceived as sophisticated. However, when I wore black to meetings in certain small school districts, I was considered aloof. A change of wardrobe color altered perceptions.

What do the colors you wear say about you? Colors you wear may affect your mood as well as how others perceive you. Work environment colors also matter.

At a subconscious level colors affect people in different ways. Colors can send positive or negative messages. Using colors effectively to dress, decorate your office or design your web site can put you ahead of the competition.

What Colors Convey

Research on the psychology of color consistently demonstrates that colors evoke emotional, behavioral and physical responses. Advertising executives know that a product can have a completely different impact if the packaging color is changed. Psychologists have found that certain colors in our environment help or hinder performance of certain tasks. Mental concentration is best in cool environments while exercise is best performed in warm environments.

Generally, warm colors such as red and its neighboring hues on the color spectrum are active, exciting. Cool colors such as light green, blue and violet are passive, calming.  Reds tend to stimulate the central nervous system, increase bodily tension, while cool colors release tension. Meanings change with lighter or darker shades of colors, and different cultures have differing views.

Research suggests that blue is the most favored color, followed by pink, green, red, purple and black. Brown is the least popular, followed by white, yellow and orange.

Personality traits are reflected by your preferred color. Extroverts like red, introverts blue. Yellow is the choice of intellectuals, and well-balanced individuals tend to wear green.

Use Color Positively

Use color to trigger desired emotions. Surround yourself with favorite colors to lift your spirit.  In addition to selecting colors that suit you, attend to how you feel, and the message you want to project.

When dressing for important meetings, plan your wardrobe to achieve impact.  If you wear more than one color, combine the meanings to create your desired effect.

Remember to dress with authority. The dark suit, navy or medium to dark gray, with a crisp shirt and contrasting tie is appropriate for men. A conservative navy, gray or tan business suit is suitable for women.

Create Desired Effect With Color

– Red exudes power, energy, excitement and passion. It makes peoples’ hearts beat faster.

Wear red when you want to be assertive, need an energy boost or exude sexuality. Red is effective as an accessory to project energy. Avoid red when you feel nervous, want to elude attention.

– Orange represents creativity, confidence, joy, sensuality and ambition. It suggests vibrant health and has positive effects on emotional states.

Wear orange when you want to have fun, heighten creativity or heal emotions. Avoid it when you feel restless, dependent, fearful, want to relax.

– Yellow is associated with happiness, freedom, optimism and mental concentration. Yellow speeds metabolism. Some shades suggest cowardice; golden shades promise good times.  

Wear yellow when you need to attend to details, maintain mental alertness, feel happy. Use sparingly because it can be overpowering. Avoid yellow when you’re fearful, want to evade attention, relax.

– Green suggests security, abundance, love, growth, luck and balance. It’s also associated with envy. Forest green projects conservatism, wealth, but olive green may represent illness.

Wear green when you want to see things from a different perspective, need to feel grounded, calm, generous. Don’t wear it when you’re confused, feel stagnant, want to be alone.

– Blue represents authority, structure, communication, dependability, trust and loyalty.  Some shades or too much blue can project coldness.

Wear blue when you want to exude power, have mental control, be conservative, respected or communicate an important message. Don’t wear blue when you feel isolated, depressed, critical.

– Gray is practical, timeless, cautious, successful and solid. Some shades are associated with age, depression, lack of direction. Excessive use of gray leads to feelings of being invisible, but a touch adds feelings of stability.

Wear gray when you want to feel self-sufficient, isolate yourself.  Avoid it when you feel lonely, stressed.

– Brown is associated with stability, honesty, practicality and commitment. Wear brown when you need to work hard, be a team member or organized. Avoid it when you want to expend energy, play, feel insecure.

– Pink represents love, affection and serenity. Wear it when you want to feel feminine, lovable, need to concentrate and listen. Avoid pink when you feel vulnerable, insecure, fragmented, are giving more than receiving.

– Purple is associated with prosperity, spirituality and sophistication. When overused it communicates ostentatiousness.  Wear purple to project wisdom, trust, release destructive emotions.

– Black represents power, elegance, discipline and mystery. Sometimes, it’s associated with evil and grieving.

Wear black to communicate an authoritative image or protect emotions. Since too much black can overwhelm some, don’t wear it when you want to establish rapport.

– White symbolizes purity, cleanliness, safety, completion, strength and neutrality. Wear white to feel peaceful, convey a well-balanced, optimistic personality. White is most effective as part of an ensemble. Too much can project coldness, isolation.

Make a great impression. You’re that first flash of color others see!

Author Bio: Carole Kanchier, PhD, is an internationally recognized newspaper/digital columnist, registered psychologist, coach, speaker, and author of Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life. https://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963. Kanchier has taught at University of California, Berkeley and Santa Cruz, and other institutions of higher learning. Carole Kanchier is known for her pioneering, interdisciplinary approach to human potential

Dr. Kanchier is available for consultations and interviews.

Contact; carole@daretochange.com; www,questersdaretochange.com

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© Carole Kanchier, PhD

Authenticity: Be Yourself

Questers Dare to Change Shows How

Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life                   https://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963<

Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life

The word, “authenticity” comes from the Greek root authentikos, meaning “original, genuine, principal.” Authentic people are genuine, self actualizing and have a sense of purpose. Along with fearless passion and courage, they possess strong mental discipline. 

Authenticity does not come from title, social stature, or wealth, but rather from how we live. That is, how we go about pursuing our purpose and making a contribution in our own unique way. Authentic people prevail in changing times because they are in harmony with the energy of the universe. Most Questers, described in Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life, are authentic: www.questersdaretochange.com.

How authentic are you?

Check qualities you possess.

– Try to perform daily activities in unique ways

– Work hard

– Share honest opinions

– Enjoy being alone

– Self aware

– Curious

– Love intellectual stimulation

– Respect others

– Enjoy inter personal relationships

– Seek new opportunities

– Exude vibrancy

– Care about environmental issues

– Live in the moment

Scoring: The more statements you checked, the more authentic you seem to be.

Fostering authenticity

To be authentic, you must understand who you are, who you want to become, and contributions you intend to make to make the world a better place.  Be self-guided, real!.

– Strengthen Quester traits. Take the Quester Quiz: http://www.questersdaretochange.com/services-2/quester-quiz

– Build self esteem. Confidence gives you courage to set high expectations, to risk, to grow, to be authentic. Acknowledge your accomplishments. Prepare a list of positive achievements and personality characteristics. Post this where you can read it daily. Don’t change to please others or compare yourself to or compete with others.  

Stretch yourself. Constantly push the envelope, raising standards. Challenge conventional beliefs and paths. Travel uncharted territories. Although this may invoke disappointments, accepting and growing through challenges enhances authenticity.

– Be in the moment. Engage yourself completely in the activity at hand.

– Maintain perspective. Time and distance can make mountains seem like molehills. Don’t let what happened yesterday affect what will happen tomorrow. Face each challenge with an open mind.  Look upon setbacks as one step toward growth and authenticity.

Take comfort in uncertainty.  This unchartered path evolves moment-by-moment.  Realize the path is the goal. Everything is workable. 

– Focus on the positive. Look for and expect good things. Each time you catch yourself thinking something negative, replace it with a more positive thought.

– Strengthen resilience. Note what you’ve learned from traumatic experiences. Indicate how these have made you stronger, wiser, more authentic. Identify early cues that you’ve ignored, and what you’d now do differently.

– Bolster courage to risk. Review three successful risks taken. Note what made these successful. Identify perceived barriers for taking another risk, and explore ways to overcome them.

– Manage fear. Identify worrisome issues. Minimize these by researching relevant information and resources. Live in the present. Let go of “attachments.”

– Create a life in which you continue to grow and have choices. Make choices in harmony with your authentic self. Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life shows how. http://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963

Dr. Carole Kanchier, career and personal growth expert, is a registered psychologist, coach, speaker and author of  award-winning, Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life.

Check audible Questers: https://www.audible.com/pd/Questers-Dare-to-Change-Your-Job-and-Life-Audiobook/B07VZNKGJF?asin=B07VZNKGJF&ipRedirectOverride=true&overrideBaseCountry=true&pf_rd_p=34883c04-32e5-4474-a65d-0ba68f4635d3&pf_rd_r=TN801GRP49AWQSSYMDYC1

Dr. Kanchier offers coaching and speaking engagements on topics related to being the real you.

Contact  Carole Kanchier; carole@daretochange.com; www.questersdaretochange.com

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© Carole Kanchier, PhD

Authenticity: Be Yourself

Questers Dare to Change Shows How

https://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963″

Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life

The word, “authenticity” comes from the Greek root authentikos, meaning “original, genuine, principal.” Authentic people are genuine, self actualizing and have a sense of purpose. Along with fearless passion and courage, they possess strong mental discipline. 

Authenticity does not come from title, social stature, or wealth, but rather from how we live. That is, how we go about pursuing our purpose and making a contribution in our own unique way. Authentic people prevail in changing times because they are in harmony with the energy of the universe. Most Questers, described in Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life, are authentic: www.questersdaretochange.com.

How authentic are you?

Check qualities you possess.

– Try to perform daily activities in unique ways

– Work hard

– Share honest opinions

– Enjoy being alone

– Self aware

– Curious

– Love intellectual stimulation

– Respect others

– Enjoy inter personal relationships

– Seek new opportunities

– Exude vibrancy

– Care about environmental issues

– Live in the moment

Scoring: The more statements you checked, the more authentic you seem to be.

Fostering authenticity

To be authentic, you must understand who you are, who you want to become, and contributions you intend to make to make the world a better place.  Be self-guided, real!.

– Strengthen Quester traits. Take the Quester Quiz: http://www.questersdaretochange.com/services-2/quester-quiz

– Build self esteem. Confidence gives you courage to set high expectations, to risk, to grow, to be authentic. Acknowledge your accomplishments. Prepare a list of positive achievements and personality characteristics. Post this where you can read it daily. Don’t change to please others or compare yourself to or compete with others.  

Stretch yourself. Constantly push the envelope, raising standards. Challenge conventional beliefs and paths. Travel uncharted territories. Although this may invoke disappointments, accepting and growing through challenges enhances authenticity.

– Be in the moment. Engage yourself completely in the activity at hand.

– Maintain perspective. Time and distance can make mountains seem like molehills. Don’t let what happened yesterday affect what will happen tomorrow. Face each challenge with an open mind.  Look upon setbacks as one step toward growth and authenticity.

Take comfort in uncertainty.  This unchartered path evolves moment-by-moment.  Realize the path is the goal. Everything is workable. 

– Focus on the positive. Look for and expect good things. Each time you catch yourself thinking something negative, replace it with a more positive thought.

– Strengthen resilience. Note what you’ve learned from traumatic experiences. Indicate how these have made you stronger, wiser, more authentic. Identify early cues that you’ve ignored, and what you’d now do differently.

– Bolster courage to risk. Review three successful risks taken. Note what made these successful. Identify perceived barriers for taking another risk, and explore ways to overcome them.

– Manage fear. Identify worrisome issues. Minimize these by researching relevant information and resources. Live in the present. Let go of “attachments.”

– Create a life in which you continue to grow and have choices. Make choices in harmony with your authentic self. Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life shows how. http://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963

Dr. Carole Kanchier, career and personal growth expert, is a registered psychologist, coach, speaker and author of  award-winning, Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life.

Check audible Questers: https://www.audible.com/pd/Questers-Dare-to-Change-Your-Job-and-Life-Audiobook/B07VZNKGJF?asin=B07VZNKGJF&ipRedirectOverride=true&overrideBaseCountry=true&pf_rd_p=34883c04-32e5-4474-a65d-0ba68f4635d3&pf_rd_r=TN801GRP49AWQSSYMDYC1

Dr. Kanchier offers coaching and speaking engagements on topics related to being the real you.

Contact  Carole Kanchier; carole@daretochange.com; www.questersdaretochange.com

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Check Nonverbal Cues

July 9, 2020

© Carole Kanchier, PhD

Check #Nonverbal #Communication

Are you aware of the nonverbal signals you send? Do you know how to interpret the body language of colleagues and clients?

We both send and receive conscious and subconscious nonverbal messages.  Experts say that 70 to 90 percent of communication is nonverbal.

Gain a competitive edge in the business world. Attend to nonverbal and verbal messages. What you say as well as how you say it give you advantages during interviews, presentations, company meetings and client negotiations.

Check body language knowledge

Answer “yes” or “no.”

1. Eye contact is disrespectful in some cultures. 

2. Listeners who look away from speakers demonstrate confusion or disbelief.

3.  Eagerness is exhibited with simultaneous displays of smiling and head nodding.  

4.  Confidence is exhibited by hands in pockets.

5.  Well-dressed professionals project success, credibility.

6. Placing both hands behind the head reveals self-doubt.

7. Speakers who make eye contact with listeners increase credibility. 

8. It’s best to interpret nonverbal communication along with simultaneous verbal communication. 

9. When conducting business, it’s best to stand or sitat the client’s level. 

10. Defensiveness is indicated by arms crossed high on chest and crossed legs.

Scoring: One point for each “yes” to statements 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 9, and 10; and “no” to statements 4 and 6. A high score suggests you understand nonverbal communication. A low score suggests you could enhance body language knowledge. Consider the following:

Understand and use nonverbal communication

– Eye contact and facial expressions.  Establish eye contact to demonstrate open communication flow, and convey honesty, interest, warmth and credibility. Smile frequently to encourage approachability. Smiling transmits happiness, friendliness. 

– Body orientation and movements. To show you’re approachable, lean slightly forward to face the person with whom you’re communicating.  

Be aware of positive and negative messages sent by other cues.Boredom is indicted by looking away from speaker, sloppy posture or preoccupation with something else.

Attentive listening is demonstrated by cupping chin between thumbs and fingers or putting hands to bridge of nose. Expanded chests communicate confidence in men and openness in women, while shrunken chests convey self-consciousness.

Dishonesty is demonstrated by frequent eye blinking, covering mouth or looking away while speaking. Insecurity is exhibited by hands in pockets, fidgeting, coughing or hand wringing.

– Gestures. Some hand and arm gestures while speaking are good; they demonstrate animation and capture interest. But excessive gestures turn some off, and not using any suggests no enthusiasm. Head nods communicate interest and positive reinforcement.

In today’s business world touch is avoided because of “sexual implications.” However, touch demonstrates “You’re OK.”

– Interpersonal distance. Too much or too little space between people causes discomfort.Signals of uneasiness include rocking, leg swinging, tapping.

Appropriate amount of space for intimate communication is one and one/half feet or less. Close interpersonal contact requires one and one/half to four feet, and business transactions need four to 12 feet. Formal communications are beyond 12 feet.

– Vocal cues and linguistics. Speak in a level, modulated voice. Talk loud enough to be heard, but don’t shout. A low voice can make a strong point. 

Vary the tone, pitch, rhythm, timbre, loudness and inflection of your voice. Monotone suggests boredom. High pitch suggests excitement, and low pitch projects anger.

Arhythmic voice pattern projects confidence, authority. Irregular speech is considered thoughtful or uncertain. Slow speech frustrates listeners. Speaking too fast suggests nervousness, and is difficult to understand.

– Physical appearance and grooming.  Project a confident, energetic, enthusiastic, professional image.  

Look savvy, contemporary. Maintain standards of good taste. Dress according to company norms. Coordinate pieces. Wear spotless, well-tailored clothes. Maintain shoes, have hair cut professionally. Avoid strong fragrances, bulging briefcases.

Stand tall, sit erect.Slumping posture projects subservience, exhaustion and age.

– Handshake. Convey a positive first impression.Communicate power, confidence and sincerity with a firm grip. Support your grip with consistent nonverbal messages.  A loose handshake projects weakness, insecurity. A vice-like grip suggests intimidation and causes pain. Use a handshake after an agreement to symbolically seal it

Awareness of nonverbal behaviors enables you to send positive messages and eliminate destructive ones. To improve nonverbal communication, videotape yourself interacting with others.  Ask a friend to suggest refinements. Practice those you want to perfect.

Additional suggestions for strengthening nonverbal communication are found in Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life by Dr. Carole Kanchier: https://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963  

Check audible edition: htps://www.audible.com/pd/Questers-Dare-to-Change-Your-Job-and-Life-Audiobook/B07VZNKGJF?asin=B07VZNKGJF&ipRedirectOverride=true&overrideBaseCountry=true&pf_rd_p=34883c04-32e5-4474-a65d-0ba68f4635d3&pf_rd_r=TN801GRP49AWQSSYMDYC1

Author, Carole Kanchier, PhD, informs, inspires and challenges individuals to be all they can be! A registered psychologist, educator, speaker, and author/columnist, Kanchier encourages adults to look at career advancement in new ways.

A complementary copy of chapter 1, Questers Dare to Change, is available from Dr. Kanchier’s web site: www.questersdaretochange.com/book

To request a review copy of Questers or book an interview with Carole Kanchier please email: carole@questersdaretochange.com.www.questersdaretohang.com

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© Carole Kanchier, PhD

carole@questersdaretochange.com

#Perseverance: A Secret to #Success

Mark’s first try at establishing his sportswear store failed. After re-evaluating his experience, he opened another store. Mark is now the proud owner of four successful sportswear stores.

Mark didn’t fail in his first attempt. Failure occurs when we quit or stop trying. Mark has perseverance. He kept improving his products and services.

Perseverance is the key to success. After thousands of efforts to make the electric light bulb, Thomas Edison said, “I haven’t failed, I’ve identified 10,000 ways that it doesn’t work.” Helen Keller, Abraham Lincoln, Marie Curie and an endless list of other great achievers found that success inevitably arrives for everyone who perseveres.

Acquiring a desired job or promotion or succeeding at business may present challenges, but this is part of the learning process. Ultimately, individuals who persist, become successful. They learn from mistakes.

Do you persevere? Or, after meeting rejection or difficulties, do you quit?

Test Your Perseverance Quotient

Give yourself one for each “yes” to the following:

   1. I believe in myself.

   2. I have clear career goals.

   3. I address my limitations.

   4. I bounce back from disappointments.

   5. I persist.

   6. My family and friends support me in my pursuit of goals.

   7. I can adapt to change.

   8. I focus and complete projects.

   9. My goals are consistent with my purpose and values.

  10. I can take unpopular stands when I believe I’m right.

Add your “yes” scores. The higher your score, the more perseverant you tend to be. You may be a Quester. Test your Quester quotient: http://www.questersdaretochange.com/services-2/quester-quiz/

Tips for Persevering

Clarify your goal. Base it on your purpose, needs, and abilities. Know why you want this goal and how you and others will benefit.

— Intend to achieve your goal. Outline your goal, strategies, and timeline. Know resources that can help you attain it, including individuals and the Internet. Break the goal into small steps, working backward from your desired outcome and attainment date.

— Maintain optimism. Expect good things. Keep a daily diary of good experiences.

— Acknowledge your accomplishments. Judge these against personal standards of self improvements. Have the courage of your convictions. Don’t change for others or compare yourself with them.

— Live in the present. Don’t dwell on the past or worry about what might happen. Let go of attachments. The more attached you are to something, the greater the fear of losing it.

— Try new experiences. Experiment with new ways of improving a product or service at work or other activities. Investigate how successful individuals or teams have achieved similar goals.

— Care for you mind, body, emotions, and spirit. Schedule quiet times to think and reassess. Practice stress relievers such as deep breathing and exercise. Get sufficient sleep, eat healthy, and take time for fun and friends.

— Experience yourself living your goal today. Hold your desired outcome firmly in your mind. See, smell, touch, and hear aspects of your goal. Each morning upon rising, review your goal. Repeat the process at night.

8. Persist. Focus on goals daily. At regular intervals, ask yourself whether your activities are moving you forward. Additional Questers’ success secrets are found in Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life. https://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963.

Check audible edition: htps://www.audible.com/pd/Questers-Dare-to-Change-Your-Job-and-Life-Audiobook/B07VZNKGJF?asin=B07VZNKGJF&ipRedirectOverride=true&overrideBaseCountry=true&pf_rd_p=34883c04-32e5-4474-a65d-0ba68f4635d3&pf_rd_r=TN801GRP49AWQSSYMDYC1

Please review sample book chapters: http://www.questersdaretochange.com/book/excerpts, and

Carole’s blogs: http://www.questersdaretochange.com/blog

Based on ongoing research, Questers helps people understand change, and empower themselves to manage uncertainty

Author Bio: Carole Kanchier, PhD, is an internationally recognized newspaper/digital columnist, speaker, registered psychologist, coach and author of award winning, Questers Dare to Change shows how to reevaluate lifelong personal and professional goals and plan for success.

Carole Kanchier has taught at University of California, Berkeley and Santa Cruz, University of Alberta, and other institutions of higher learning. Dr. Kanchier is known for her pioneering, interdisciplinary approach to human potential.

Dr. Kanchier is available for consultations and interviews. Her team will be delighted to send a complementary PDF of Questers Dare to Change for review

Contact: carole@daretochange.com;  www.questersdaretochange.com

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© Carole Kanchier, PhD

Is Perfectionism Hindering Your Career Growth?

Are you always worried that no matter how hard you try it’s never good enough? Do you feel you must give 100 percent on everything or be considered a failure? Do you delay completing projects because you can’t get them right? Avoid giving opinions because they may sound stupid?

If so, you may be a perfectionist. Perfectionism refers to self-defeating thoughts and behaviors that cause people to set unrealistic goals, fear making mistakes.

Some perfectionism is good. It can advance your career and encourage excellence and pride in accomplishments. But excessive perfectionism may make you afraid to try. You worry about disapproval. Productivity and creativity diminish.  

Perfectionist attitudes can interfere with career success. Perfectionism leads to stress, impaired health, troubled interpersonal relationships, and reduced feelings of accomplishment and confidence. Other consequences include procrastination, fear of risk-taking and rejection, conformity, self-consciousness and doubt. Perfectionists are vulnerable to depression, performance anxiety,pessimism,compulsiveness, loneliness, disappointment,impatience, frustration and anger.

Perfectionists differ from healthy strivers. Strivers set goals based on their own needs and capabilities rather than external expectations. Their goals are realistic, potentially attainable. They enjoy the process of accomplishing challenging tasks rather than focusing solely on results. Their reactions to failure are limited to specific situations rather than generalized to self-worth. They accept constructive feedback and bounce back from failure quickly, energetically.

Perfectionists believe:

– It’s possible to do things perfectly.

– Mistakes must not be made.

– The highest standards must always be met.

– Failure to reach goals equals personal shortcomings.

– People judge others negatively if they see flaws.

– Needs are secondary to goal attainment.

– Everything is black or white, right or wrong.

Overcoming Perfectionism

— Accept yourself. Acknowledge who you are, not who you “should” be. List accomplishments and personal qualities that deserve recognition. Ask friends for feedback and support.  Take pride in successes.

Forgive mistakes. Accept the “ideal” as a guideline, goal to be worked toward, not to be achieved 100 percent. Give yourself credit for good performance and effort, even though not perfect. Use thought stopping techniques when you mentally scold yourself for not being “good enough.” Reward yourself for progress.

— Eliminate self-defeating thoughts and behaviors. Realize perfectionism is an unattainable illusion.

Identify irrational thinking patterns, and dispute deceptive thoughts. For example, “I’ll get a reward if I perform perfectly. “Observe whether superiors always notice when you do things perfectly. When you recognize the inaccuracy of these beliefs, reevaluate. For example, if you decide you feel good when performing certain tasks perfectly, continue this behavior.  But, if nobody notices, you may decide to skip perfection.

Write answers to questions such as, ”What perfectionist characteristics do I have? What irrational beliefs do I possess? How do these impede my career advancement?  “What’s the worst thing that could happen if I don’t complete things perfectly?

Try replacing one self-defeating thought or behavior with a more positive alternative one every week. Believe you’ll succeed.  Even though you’re not the model, you’re moving in a positive direction.

— Set attainable goals based on your purpose and strengths. Set each new goal one level beyond your present level of accomplishment. Avoid all or nothing thinking. Reassess plans.

Outline realistic, flexible time frames for achievement of goals. Be patient as you work toward goals. Enjoy the process and learning involved.

Evaluate success in terms of what you’ve accomplished and degree of enjoyment.  Experiment with standards of excellence. Instead of aiming for 100 percent, try 80 percent for some projects.

Recognize mistakes are part of the process. “Imperfect” results don’t lead to punitive consequences. Learn from mistakes. Acknowledge your right to make them. When you stop making errors, you stop learning.

— Set time limits on tasks. Prioritize these.Outline activities that will move you toward your goal. Meet deadlines. When time is up, move to another activity.

Don’t take criticism personally. Accept constructive feedback. Learn from it.

Remember, a healthy achiever has drive. A perfectionist is driven. Pablo Cassals advises: ”The main thing in life is not to be afraid to be human.”

Author Bio: Carole Kanchier, PhD, is an internationally recognized newspaper/digital columnist, speaker, registered psychologist, coach and author of award winning, Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life. https://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963. Questers shows how to reevaluate lifelong personal and professional goals and plan for success.

Carole Kanchier has taught at University of California, Berkeley and Santa Cruz, University of Alberta, and other institutions of higher learning. Dr. Kanchier is known for her pioneering, interdisciplinary approach to human potential.

Dr. Kanchier is available for consultations and interviews. Her team will be delighted to send a complementary PDF of Questers Dare to Change.

Contact: carole@daretochange.com;  http://www.questersdaretochange.com

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© Carole Kanchier, PhD

carole@daretochange.com

Are You a Good Listener?

Are you a good listener?  Do others feel comfortable talking to you? 

Listening skills are crucial for personal and professional success. Unfortunately, studies suggest that only about 25 percent of us listen efficiently.

Ineffective listening affects productivity and morale. Faulty listening habits can alienate customers, damage relationships, and cause people to miss appointments and misinterpret suggestions. Managers, who are rated inefficient by subordinates, tend to be poor listeners. Subordinates, who fail to listen, may make mistakes.

Are you a good listener? 
Answer “yes” or “no.”

1. I finish sentences for others. 
2. When listening, I tend to think about what I will say next.
3. I listen for main ideas. 
4. I judge content, skip over delivery errors. 
5. When others ask questions, I give them full attention. 
6. Certain emotion-laden words anger me. 
7. I maintain eye contact. 
8. I get distracted easily. 
9. I take intensive notes. 
10. I listen between the lines to voice tones. 
11. I mentally summarize the speaker’s message. 
12. I anticipate what the speaker may say, then finish his statement. 
13. I give the speaker an opportunity to explain the issue. 
14. I never put others on the defensive. 
15. I tend to monopolize conversations. 

Scoring: One point for each “yes” to 3, 4, 5, 7, 10, 11, 13 and 14; and “no” to 1, 2, 6, 8, 9, 12, and 15. The higher your score the more you tend to be a good listener. To further verify your listening ability, ask a colleague to complete the quiz for you.
 
Effective listening is an active process. Like most skills, listening takes practice. Become aware of your ineffective listening habits, and practice effective skills.

 Tips for effective listening

— Focus on the speaker and attend to his or her message. This enables the speaker to feel comfortable sharing thoughts and feelings.  

— Demonstrate appropriate body language. Lean forward slightly and look the speaker in the eyes. Instead of sitting behind a desk, join the speaker in an adjoining chair. When appropriate, smile, frown, laugh, or maintain silence to let the speaker know you understand what he is saying.  

Radiate interest and offer encouragement. Speak softly (“Uh-huh”) and nod. Make comments such as “Fascinating,”  and offer prompts: “What did he say?” and “What did you do then?”

Ask questions for clarification after the speaker has finished so you won’t interrupt his train of thought. Repeat, in your own words, what the speaker said so you can ensure your understanding is correct.  For example, “So you’re saying …”  

— Listen for main ideas. Important points the speaker may want to convey could be mentioned at the start or end of a talk. Attend to statements that begin with phrases such as, “My point is …” or “The thing to remember is …” 

— Listen between the lines. Concentrate not only on what’s being said but also on the attitudes and motives behind the words. Note changing voice tone and volume, facial expressions, hand gestures and body movements. 

Observe whether the voice message is congruent with auditory and behavioral cues. Although the speaker says he’s excited about an idea or project, his lack of spontaneous movement, wandering or downcast eyes, unanimated voice tone, masked face or hunched posture may indicate he feels differently.

— Focus on the message. not speaker. the speaker’s accent, speech impediment or disorganized thought patterns. 

— Tune out everything but the speaker. To minimize distractions, close the office door, don’t answer the telephone, and turn off the computer. Don’t doodle or click your pen and continue to focus on what the speaker is saying.

— Don’t interrupt. This signals you’re not paying attention, and suggests the speaker’s comments are unimportant. 

Ensure the speaker has finished conveying the message before talking. If the speaker is launching a complaint against you, wait until he is finished. This will allow the speaker to feel his point has been made. 

— Keep an open mind. Don’t make assumptions about what the speaker is saying. Wait until she is finished before coming to conclusions.  Instead of dismissing the person or topic as dull, consider this as an opportunity to learn something new.  

— Don’t top the speaker. If someone is discussing the Rockies, avoid reminiscing about a trip to Italy.

Consider listening a learning experience and an opportunity to enhance relationships with others. 

Questers Dare to Change provides additional tips for effective listening as well as other skills required for career advancement.  https://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963

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Keeping Your Cool

July 3, 2020

© Carole Kanchier, PhD

Keeping Your Cool

< Dare to Change Your Job and and Life describes how to manage anger and take charge of lifelong career growth: https://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963

Have you been so angry that you wanted to throw something at another colleague? Lost your temper and voiced anger?

Anger sends messages such as, “You’ve offended me.” “I don’t like you.”  Expressing anger tends to generate more anger.

While anger is a natural emotion, mismanagement of anger can have serious consequences.  Anger in the workplace is a problem when it adversely affects co-workers and productivity, or turns into violence and expensive litigation. 

Anger has a negative effect on worker morale, productivity and teamwork. Itcan also result in health problems; angrypeople tend to have more cardio-vascular and stress-related illnesses than calm people.

Do you manage anger well? 

Answer “yes” or “no:” 

1. When angry, I act before thinking.

2. It’s easy for me to forgive.

3. My anger goes away after I explode.

4. I’m rarely angry.

5. I become mad to get what I want.

6. I’m easygoing.

7. I lose control when my anger takes over.

8. When provoked, I think before acting.

9. I need to win arguments.

10. I can calm situations when people are angry with me.

11. I hang on to anger.

12. I’m usually calm and centered.

13. I take anger out on people around me.

14. I know when I’m getting angry.

15. People are out to get me.

Scoring: One point for each “yes” to odd-numbered statements and each “no” to even numbered ones.  Three or less suggests you manage anger well; four to seven suggests you should learn anger management strategies; and eight or higher indicates you need anger management counseling or coaching.

Managing anger

1. Take time out.  Count to 10 before acting. Go to a quiet place and breathe deeply if you’re enraged, or wait a few days to cool down.

Shift gears. Dispel angry energy by performing more mundane, routine aspects of your job.

2. Identify feelings and thoughts. Clarify and objectify the issue. Know why you’re mad. Remind yourself to keep anger in check.

Think. Write down your version of the incident. Take responsibility for your feelings.  Explore ways to resolve the problem. Plan how you’ll communicate your view.

3. Communicate. Share your thoughts and feelings with the person. Discuss the factual basis of each other’s thoughts to get a different interpretation. Give merit to another’s view until you can validate its accuracy. Change your view if new information proves you wrong.

Listen. Conflict accelerates when people don’t feel heard. Consider others’ viewpoints carefully without defensiveness. Try to understand the message even if you disagree. Attend to words, tone of voice, expressions and gestures. React thoughtfully. Pay attention to what is said without interrupting, judging or offering solutions. Ask questions when you’re not clear about something. This enables you to get more information and demonstrates interest and concern.

Summarize what you hear the person say to correct misunderstandings. Let her know you hear the emotional content of the message. Listen between the lines. What’s the person feeling but not saying.

When there’s a pause, demonstrate understanding. For example, “I understand.” You’re not necessarily agreeing with the person or giving in, but you’re showing interest and respect the other’s concern.

4. Share negative emotions in person. Never criticize, complain, or send inflammatory remarks via emails, answering machines or notes.

Don’t respond negatively to inflammatory mail. Question your assumptions for validity. Contact senders by phone or email to schedule one-to-one meetings in person or over the phone to discuss concerns.

5. Negotiate. Look for creative compromises that consider needs and priorities of all parties.  Ask those involved for suggestions. Choices make people feel they have control.

6. Forgive. Release negative feelings, the painful past and need for revenge. Search for positive solutions.

7. Practice makes perfect. Identify someone who handles anger well. List three effective anger management strategies he or she uses. List three ways you usually express anger, and three ways in which you could react more positively.

Rehearse anger management strategies.Practicing self-control will enable you to remain calm when tension is high.  You’ll also become a better communicator, maintain fairness and integrity, and have a more harmonious, productive workplace.

Review sample book chapters: http://www.questersdaretochange.com/book/excerpts/ and Carole’s blogs: http://www.questersdaretochange.com/blog

Author Bio: Carole Kanchier, PhD, is an internationally recognized newspaper/digital columnist, registered psychologist, speaker, coach and author of Questers Dare to Change.  Kanchier has taught at University of California, Berkeley and Santa Cruz, University of Alberta, and other institutions of higher learning, and worked with diverse individuals and organizations.  Dr. Kanchier is known for her pioneering, interdisciplinary approach to human potential. She is available for consultations and interviews.

Contact: Carole Kanchier, PhD

carole@questersdaretochange.com; www.questersdaretochange.com

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Are You a #RiskTaker?

July 2, 2020

© Carole Kanchier, PhD


Can You Take A Risk?

Most successful people have learned to risk. The good feelings that result from taking a risk can be incredible. You see yourself as a survivor. You force yourself to grow by calling on abilities you haven’t used. Achieving your goal will enhance your sense of accomplishment, self-confidence and knowledge.

Are You a Risk Taker?

Answer “yes” or “no.”

1. I often wish people would be more definite.

2. When I want something, I’ll go out on a limb for it.

3. If the possible reward is very high, I would put money into a business that could fail.

4. I like to plan my activities.

5. I enjoy taking risks.

6. I prefer job challenge to job security.

7. I enjoy working on problems that have ambiguous answers.

8. I accept the possibility of failure.

9. It bothers me when something unexpected interrupts my routine.

10. I trust decisions I make spontaneously.

11. In games, I usually go for broke.

12. Once my mind is made up, that’s it.

13. I’m in favor of very strict enforcement of laws regardless of the consequences.

14. I try to avoid situations that have uncertain outcomes.

15. I would not borrow money for a business deal even if it might be profitable.

Scoring: 2 points for responding “yes” to each of the following statements: 2, 3, 5, 6,  7, 8, 10, and 11.

A score of 10 or higher, suggests you enjoy taking risks. You are autonomous, like challenge, are confident, flexible and open to new experiences. However, if your score is 14 or more, your desire to risk may sometimes be extreme. A score of 4 to 8 suggests you may be open to some new experiences, but are overly organized or rigid in other areas. If you scored 3 or lower, you prefer a secure, well-ordered lifestyle.

Strengthen ability to risk.

If you want to develop your full potential, learn to take planned risks. Try some of the following:

— Make small changes first. This enables you to develop confidence and trust. You can then move on to more major decisions. Experiment with a different hair style or food. Change your routine. At work, offer new ways of tackling a job.

— Have a goal. A risk without a clear purpose can backfire. Focus on things you can change.  Have positive expectations, do your homework, know the pros and cons, and listen to your intuition.

— Believe in yourself. Affirm yourself. Replace any negative thoughts or statements with positive ones. Avoid phrases such as, “I can’t,” “I will never. …”

— Turn failure or crises into growth opportunities. Consider “failure” a temporary setback. Depersonalize setbacks. Learn from these. Ask yourself what you would do differently and then make the necessary modifications.

— Look upon something new as an exciting opportunity to challenge yourself andto grow. If you don’t try, how will you ever find out if you can do it?

— Balance tentativeness with commitment. Set goals but don’t write these in stone. Be open to new experiences.

— Establish a support group. Confide in and ask for help from supportive family or friends. Associate with positive people.

— Describe barriers that are blocking you from making a desired change. For example, Personal Barriers include fear of loss of a secure income; fear of failure (such as starting a new job); fear of what others will think; fear of success; and guilt that change might create family hardships.

Societal Barriers include old notions of “career”; outdated retirement policies; traditional gender roles; and blocks imposed by educational institutions, unions and professional associations.

— Complete the Fantasy Risk Exercise: Think of an important risk you would like to take.  What appeals to you about taking this risk? What would you gain?  What is frightening about this risk? What will you lose?  What’s the worst thing that could happen if it turned out badly? If the worst happened, what would you do?

Where could you get information to pursue this risk? From whom could you get support? What could you do to make this less risky? Less irreversible? 

If you broke the risk into small steps, what would the first step be? How soon could you take it? Do this for each step. Evaluate the outcome of the risk. Did it turn out as expected? If not, why? What have you learned?

Celebrate your success whether or not it turned out as expected. Gradually, you will see yourself as a risk taker.

Creating a life worth living and finding the courage to risk pursuing you dreams isn’t easy, but you can do it! Questers, described in award winning, Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life, show you how! http://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963    

Check audible Questers:  https://www.audible.com/pd/Questers-Dare-to-Change-Your-Job-and-Life-Audiobook/B07VZNKGJF?asin=B07VZNKGJF&ipRedirectOverride=true&overrideBaseCountry=true&pf_rd_p=34883c04-32e5-4474-a65d-0ba68f4635d3&pf_rd_r=TN801GRP49AWQSSYMDYC1

Author Bio: Carole Kanchier, PhD, is an internationally recognized newspaper/digital columnist, registered psychologist,  speaker, coach and author of Questers Dare to Change.  Kanchier has taught at University of California, Berkeley and Santa Cruz, University of Alberta, and other institutions of higher learning. Dr. Kanchier, who has worked with clients representing varied industries, is known for her pioneering, interdisciplinary approach to human potential.  Dr. Kanchier is available for consultations and speaking engagements.
Contact: carole@daretochange.com; carole@questersdaretochange.com; www.questersdaretochange.com
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