Unclutter Your Life

Want to Sound More Confident?

I don’t read a lot of books, since I have a hard time remembering BUT I do love the core principles Valerie Burton outlined in her book, Successful Women Think Differently.  

Your thoughts create your actions.  I have said it a million times, think negative thoughts and more negative things happen.  Think positive thoughts and more positive things happen.  For me, sometimes I don’t realize I am thinking negative thoughts.  Crazy, right?  How many times have the words “don’t” or “need” or “won’t” been in your thoughts?  The Universe seldom hears things after these words.  I never really understood it until I started a list of positive mantras and read them every morning.  I claim the things I want and I am getting them – slowly but they are coming.

When you become aware of what you are saying to yourself about things, you can consciously decide if the thought is moving you toward your goals or farther away. Thoughts don’t just lead you to take actions,  your thoughts also shape the sound of your voice. Yes, the tone of our internal voices will reflect on the outside and others will see it.

Our voice is an expression of our internal state. If our internal state is anxious and you think danger is imminent, our voice will reflect anxiety. I have seen this play out so many times.  On the inside, I am stressing about money, relationships, business or whatever – on the outside, I am snappy and tense.  Our body responds to our thoughts.  No matter how hard you try, you won’t be able to hide it.

Here is the “technical reason”: The sound of your voice is regulated by the vagus nerve, which is central to the parasympathetic nervous system. When the vagus nerve is stimulated, which can happen as a fight-or-flight response to anxiety-producing thoughts, the vocal cord muscle spasms. This can cause your voice to quiver or ‘sound nervous’. Additionally, when stressed or nervous, you typically don’t breathe deeply. As a result, you don’t have the air which creates the pressure needed for a strong, consistent voice quality.

How can you change things to sound more confident?

1. Become aware of your thoughts and redirect counterproductive ones. Basically, go from a negative thought to a positive one.  Instead of “No one wants to book parties” or “It is taking so long to pay off my debt”, intentionally change the thought.  If you can, change your environment – go for a walk, a ride or just sit out in the sunshine and watch the clouds.  Choose a new thought – like “I am a booking machine” or “I have enough money to pay off my debt”.  Do something (anything) to get your mind moving in a new direction.

2. Exercise. Exercise purges negative energy.  It is true.  I don’t mean you have to go to the gym to exercise, unless you want to.  For me, it means a walk around the block or some housecleaning or turn on the music and dance.

3. Practice. We have heard most of our lives “practice makes perfect”.  While we aren’t looking for perfection, we are looking to feel confident.  Need to do a presentation in from of a group and you feel uncomfortable or anxious – practice what you are going to say in advance. Some will say you should even record it and listen to find the areas where you want to improve. Take a video on your phone or have someone else film you.  Then watch it back.  Don’t be overly hard on yourself, just look for ways to improve.  You don’t need to be PERFECT but you want to get rid of the nervous energy.

4. Hydrate. Hydration alleviates dry mouth. Drink water before or during important conversations.  In the beginning of talking to a group of any size, I am nervous.  I usually ask for a glass of water or keep a bottle of water handy.  When I feel like I am talking too fast or my nervousness is showing, I stop, take a sip of water, breathe and move on.  It really does make a difference.  It is like the water washes away the nervousness.

5. Talk it out. This one is tough for me because when I have the negative thoughts and I try to share them, I get emotional.  I have been blessed with friends, old and new, who help me to put my negative thinking into perspective.  Be careful and choose wisely.  Be sure you pick someone to share with who will help put the negative thoughts into perspective restoring a sense of confidence and calm.

These are some basic steps which will help, I know because I continue to practice all of them at some point in my life.  As you become more aware of the negative thoughts, you will be able to convert them to  positive thoughts and actions to help you move forward.

What thoughts make you anxious and chip away at your confidence?

Business Tips and Tricks

Things Leaders Wish They Learned Sooner

The Little Things

Happy Monday morning….. I have been on a high since earning the Leadership Incentive Trip from Thirty One diligently trying to grow personally and professionally.  I have just started reading a NEW book by Andy Andrews called The Little Things.”

Ever since I can remember, I’ve been told to focus on the big picture because when I do, it would lead me to success and happiness.  So you can imagine my surprise and curiousity when I heard successful people really focus on the little things.  Here is the one question asked of some “high achievers”, you may be surprised by their responses:

If you could go back in time 10 years, what “little thing” would you tell yourself to start paying more attention to? Why?

1. Talk to Yourself Instead of Listening to Yourself by Jon Gordon, Bestselling Author of The Energy Bus Jon Gordon - The Little Things

This is a GREAT book… Too often we listen to ourselves and hear all the complaints, self-doubt, fear, and negativity that lead to unhappiness, failure and unfulfilled goals.  Yup, Been there done that and have lots of t-shirts to prove it.

But instead of listening to the negative we can choose to feed ourselves with the positive. We can fuel up with words, thoughts, phrases, scripture and beliefs that give us the strength and power to overcome our challenges and create an extraordinary life, career and team.

Just keep running, stay positive, talk to yourself instead of listen to yourself and make sure you celebrate and raise your hands in the air when you’ve reached your destination!

2. Ask for Help (and Be Willing to Receive It) by John Jantsch, Founder of Duct Tape Marketing John Jantsch - The Little Things

This is a tough one for me but with the help of a coach/friend Eryka Peskin I am learning to ask for help and receive it graciously.

The truth is business owners like to push through and figure everything and to some extent, this constricts a lot of growth. What’s funny about this is people want to help and to some extent when you don’t allow them or ask them what they think or what they would do in your shoes, you turn the tap off. I think a great deal of this comes from the desire to be seen as having it all figured out and few things are more harmful to growth than that. Ask for help, be helpless, and activate the helpfulness in others.

3. Embrace Everyday Encounters by Michele CushattKeynote Speaker 

Thus, in answer to your question, my “small thing” is to learn to be less consumed and worried with plans, schedules, and important connections, and more attuned to everyday encounters.

4. Watch for What Excites You by Chris Guillebeau, New York Times Bestselling Author of The $100 StartupChris Guillebeau - The Little Things

I’d tell myself… Pay more attention to the way things make you feel. Feelings aren’t everything, of course, but noticing when something fills you with the right combination of excitement and nervousness can be a good sign in knowing when to take a big risk.

5. Learn the Right Way to Listen by Ray Edwards, Entrepreneur and Direct Response Copywriter Ray Edwards - The Little Things

Instead of walking in a room with an attitude saying, “Here I am!” I’d walk in with an attitude that says, “There you are!” I would smile at strangers—who doesn’t love getting a big smile from a total stranger? I would listen because I want to hear what people are saying, not because I was preparing to speak. I would stop trying to get God to bless what I was doing, and instead try to do what God was blessing.

6. Don’t Let the Wrong “Little Things” Hold You Back by John Rampton, Entrepreneur and Speaker John Rampton - The Little Things

If I could go back 10 years I’d tell myself to take more of a chance on myself. I always let the “little things” hold me back from my true passion. Little things like money, security, my girlfriend at the time, etc hold me back from becoming the person I knew I could be. Pay more attention to that little voice inside you that you know you should follow but don’t always listen too. It’s usually right, but it’s the little things in life that hold us back.

Now, It’s Your Turn…

What “little thing” would you tell yourself to pay attention to if you could go back 10 years?

As for me, I would stop letting the little things hold me back – lack of money, waiting for the perfect time and follow your dream.  Share your story with us….

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Hope Wissel

We Seek What We Need

As we start another week, I wanted to share this blog by Vanessa Coppes.  Click on the link to see more beautiful pieces of jewelry.  Vanessa is the one who first challenged me to blog, so you can thank her for my crazy ramblings.  Having just finished the book “The Energy Bus” by Jon Gordon, I am definitely looking for things that will help the positive energy flow.  Enjoy!!

WE SEEK WHAT WE NEED

It’s been exactly 19 months since I slightly unpacked up my gemstones since my move from NY to NJ…but this weekend I revisited the creative nook in my home and created a few pieces.

I found myself being drawn to only 2 gemstones: Amethyst and Turquoise. Having always created my jewelry with intention, I smiled at the acknowledgement: we seek what our soul needs or yearns for.

Having had a very intense couple of weeks at work, today I understand why: We Seek What We Need.

  • Amethyst is used to protect the wearer from negative energy. Amethyst was also reputed to control evil thoughts, increase intelligence and render men shrewd in business matters. Amethyst’s ability to expand the higher mind also enhances one’s creativity and passion. It strengthens the imagination and intuition, and refines the thinking processes. It helps in the assimilation of new ideas, putting thought into action, and brings projects to fruition. It is a talisman of focus and success. Amethyst is an excellent stone for diplomats, negotiators and business people. It calms angry temperaments and gives a distinct advantage in situations where debating is required. Wear or hold Amethyst to bring in spiritual insights coupled with intellectual reasoning.
  • Turquoise is also a protection stone and carries great wisdom of basic truth within it. It enhances communication between the physical and spiritual worlds. Turquoise enhances the ability to see all aspects of ourselves, good and bad, and to integrate these aspects into a cohesive whole. While it is tempting to try and rid ourselves of the traits of self that are not entirely enlightened, Turquoise, like an ancient Grandfather ally, reminds us that all experiences are valid and that mistakes are simply another experience. Wholeness can only come when we are willing to embrace all of who we are and what we have learned.

Every morning, I set an intention for my day through prayer…I think God was giving me a little extra nudge to clear my space and let the light shine in :) What do you think?

Vanessa bracelet

Share your thoughts with me or share them with Vanessa.   Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

#hope #hopes31

Hope Wissel, Relax, Reflect, Recharge

Winner or Not?

See yourself as winner

Rest, Reflect and Recharge today!  Spend time in quiet reflection on this past week as you look towards the week ahead.

This past week, I have turned over a new leaf – I have been on “The Energy Bus” with many of the Beacon of Hope Leaders where I am learning to see myself as a winner.  I know, for those of you that know me personally, this may seem a little strange but the truth is – I don’t always feel like a winner.  This week, I have closed the door on Negative Nellie and allowed Joy to be the driver of my bus.  There have been struggles along the way but when Negative Nellie tried to come in – I simply decided to take a “gratitude walk”.  Have you ever tried one?  The next time those negative thoughts come along – STOP them in their tracks by listing all of the things that you are grateful for, large or small.  At first, it may seem senseless but give yourself about 15 minutes and see what a difference it makes in your attitude and your day.

I am choosing to take the Energy Bus, how about you?  Are you ready to be the driver of your own bus this week?  BELIEVE – if you have the desire, you also have the power to make it happen.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

#hope  #hopes31