virgin islands scene

The first problem for all of us, men and women, is not to learn, but to unlearn.
-- Gloria Steinem


Wednesday, August 28, 1996

Talk like a winner

Your behavior is strongly influenced by the things you say, think and feel. Your words, thoughts and feelings affect each other, and also affect your actions.

If you’re like most people, the easiest of these to control is what you say. And by changing the way you express things, you can actually improve your performance and effectiveness. Studies have found that optimistic people perform at a higher level than pessimists. Optimists look at a situation and see benefits, opportunities and learning experiences. Pessimists look at the same situation and see only the risks.

The fact is that most people talk, in everyday life, in negative terms. It’s so common that few people even realize they’re doing it. “How’s it going?” someone asks. “Not bad,” is the reply. “What are you doing?” “Not much."

For a change, try this: “How’s it going?” “Great!” “What are you doing?” “I’m enjoying life.” Notice how much better that feels. It seems silly and insignificant, yet make it a habit and it will quickly change your outlook. Try saying “I’m enjoying life” five times. How do you feel?

Or look at how we commonly persuade: “Why don’t we go to the ball game tonight?” Stated in the negative, this literally makes you start thinking of reasons why NOT to go to the ball game. Listen to how much better this sounds: “Let’s go to the ball game tonight.”

A few other examples:

"If you decide to do business with us, your order won’t be delayed."
"When you decide to do business with us, we’ll ship immediately."

In this case, “If” presumes that they might NOT do business. “When” presumes that they will.

"I understand what you’re saying, but we won’t let you down."
"I understand what you’re saying, and we can handle that."

Look at the enormous difference in confidence and credibility, just by changing a few words.

Language is powerful. Practice making it a positive force in your life.

— Ralph Marston

previousRecovery time       Do it anywaynext

Copyright ©1996 Ralph S. Marston, Jr. All Rights Reserved. The Daily Motivator is provided for your personal, non-commercial use only. Other than personal sharing, please do not re-distribute without permission.