Controlling your words

In Dead Poet Society, Robin Williams said, “Avoid using the word ‘very’ because it is lazy. A man is not very tired, he is exhausted. Don’t use very sad, use morose. Language was invented for one reason, boys – to woo women – and, in that endeavor, laziness will not do.”

If you want to become a more effective communicator, a better spouse, parent, friend, leader, co-worker you have to control the words you use. You can start learning to control your words by choosing not to swear.

Be wary of those who particularly swear a lot. They have a harder time controlling their emotions. If you have a harder time controlling you emotions, you have a harder time controlling your actions.

Have you ever noticed those who are quick-tempered tend to swear on every occasion whether he is excited or upset?

It is because swearing can numb us from how we express ourselves. You can’t communicate peace using the same tool to express violence. People that tend to swear on a regular basis have a harder expressing in words how they are feeling. So the cycle moves from demeaning words to abusive actions.

Try going a day without swearing. Then a week. See if it makes a difference.

The rest step

The rest step is a mountaineering technique to keep moving in the mountains when you are tired. It is particularly effective in resting your muscles and putting the stress over your skeletal system. Here is how to perform the rest step:

  1. Inhale while taking a step forward.
  2. Exhale while extending your back leg into a locked knee position.
  3. Repeat.

The rest step will help you find rhythm. It is not the fastest way to the top of the mountain but it will likely be your best chance getting to the the summit.

No more talking. Just climb the mountain one step at a time. This is your moment. When you are tired and don’t feel like you can move, take a rest step, and then another, and another. Inhale. Exhale. Repeat. Find your rhythm.

No one said it was going to be easy but it will be worth it.

The superior way of communication

Jesus knew all the answers to any question and yet in the four Gospels, Jesus asked over 150 questions. Why would someone who knows all ask us questions?

It is because asking questions (even if you already know the answer) is the superior way of communication.

Four questions that can help anyone get started in becoming a superior communicator is to ask:

  1. What is going well?
  2. What is not going well?
  3. Where are you stuck?
  4. Where do you need to change?

Mr. Hite and the barber school tribe

Tucked away in a corner on 72nd and State, you will find The Barber School. From the outside it doesn’t seem like very much. In fact, it looks like any other barber shop. However, once you step inside you will be pleasantly surprised to find a large group of students learning how to create art using trimmers and clippers.

The mastermind behind this is Tim Hite. Mr. Hite (as he is affectionately referred too) has been cutting hair for over 70 years! He has studied under the best (Paul Mitchell ring a bell?) and mastered his craft over a lifetime of work. Instead of hording this gift, Mr. Hite chooses to share it. In six months time, anyone can come in and learn the art of cutting hair.

His students come from all walks of life. This tribe of misfits Mr. Hite has assembled have left comfortable jobs or come right out of high school to follow their passions. Many of these starving artists are working 80 hours a week to support their families. Just ask the students when you are on the chair, it is part of the experience. Each student has an amazing story of how they got there.

As for Mr. Hite, he wonders between chairs, saying very little. Always observing. When students need his approval, he says one word or makes one motion. Highly respected by his students, Mr. Hite has turned cutting hair into a work of art.

For customers in the Salt Lake area, it is the best bargain in town! For five bucks, you get a five-star service and a great haircut. I never leave without tipping at least that amount (the service is that good).

You can’t help but feel you are part of something special when you go down there. And you certainly can’t help but tip your hat to Mr. Hite, who could have put down the trimmer many years ago. He could have chosen not to share his gifts with the world – it would have been easy. The same can be said with all of us: we could be “just a barber” or we can be an artist. More of us need to take a page out of The Barber School’s book.

Head over to The Barber School and be part of something real.

"With the way the world is going…"

You are either worried that the world is running out of resources (scarcity) or you believe that there will be enough invention and innovation to find new resources (abundance).

Or if you are an outside of the box thinker you believe in both, that when you have abundance in one area of your life you have scarcity in another.

“With the way the world is going…” it up to you and me to make it the best possible world it can be.

Why your story is more important than mine

Take a look at the top visited websites such as Google, YouTube, Wikipedia, Twitter, Yahoo!, Amazon, they seem to all share one thing in common: None of them are telling THEIR story but are helping you tell YOUR story.

Donald Miller explains this beautifully about positioning yourself as the Guide and placing your customers as the Hero.

As Miller puts it, if you position yourself as the Hero in your customers story they are going to react with, “That’s awesome. I am a Hero too. I am looking for a Guide to help me though. Good luck on your journey.”

None of these sites are wasting a second of our time with telling their story on how they got here. They are all focused on helping us solve our problems. And they do it each day with a more seamless and fluid experience (one click shopping, dash button, like, share, subscribe).