Lead to the Positive

We are all broadcasters. What’s your broadcast? As you move throughout your day talking to your colleagues, family and friends, where do you focus their attention? Some facts and stories fuel success; others don’t. You can adopt a simple 30 second habit: Make sure your lead sentence in conversations or meetings at work is positive. If you start conversations with how tired, sick, or stressed you feel, your body follows, as does the rest of the conversation.

We are taught to mimic the social patterns of others. In our fast-paced world, you might have time to relay only one piece of social information at work. If you make it negative, then you get stuck in that pattern. Power leads can be simple, such as answering “How are you?” with some good news, such as, “Doing great! Had an awesome weekend with the family. My son scored a goal!”

Leading questions help lead other people not to a specific answer but to positive territory. Do you have a colleague or kid that is habitually negative? Start asking them positive leading questions such as: “What was the best part of your day?”, “What was the coolest thing you learned during that project/at school today?”, “Has anyone at work/school made your day better recently and how?”

If you’re a manager, you can start off meetings with five minutes of positive guided conversation. Pose a leading question and see where it takes the team. It’ll most likely give everyone a boost and connect them more deeply.

If the person you’re talking to is still stuck in a negative mindset, limit exposure and make sure your positive resources are bolstered by getting your brain to focus on the fueling aspects of your day. That way their negativity won’t weigh on you as much. The “reality” is that there is no such thing as a realist vs. an optimist. They are not opposites. Often the realist is actually a pessimistic or marginally optimistic person saying they are being more realistic to reign in the excitement of a highly optimistic person.

Summing-up: Change your broadcast, change your power. Focus on the small ways you can change your personal broadcast to inspire happiness and success in others—making the choice of happiness easier for you at the same time. Those small shifts can make a difference for all of us.

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