Must Have Solutions - Page 2 of 63 - Useful Information About Carefully Selected Consumer Products and Services

Ways to Become More Outgoing and Sociable

It can be a bit challenging to socialize if you're used to being quiet or more reserved. However, one thing you should know is that you're not alone if you find it difficult to go to a party where you don't know many people, engage in talks with co-workers, or have a conversation with a stranger. A lot of people have ended up in loneliness and got socially isolated because of their social anxiety or shyness. Nevertheless, the good thing is that you can learn to become a more fun person, enjoy the company of others, become more relaxed in social situations, and be more outgoing, with just a few tweaks without having to compromise who you are and perpetually stay on the conversational sidelines.

Start With Small Steps

They say the journey of one thousand miles starts with a step. Hence, you must be ready to take a step if you truly mean business. So, how do you step up to establish contact with friends, colleagues, acquaintances, strangers, and other people around you? Here are a few tips that can help you out:

  • Making eye contact: Okay, let's start with this first. Instead of trying to avoid looking into people's eyes, graduate to making eye contact and expressing friendly gestures.
  • Smile: This is level two. After you've mastered the art of making eye contact, then you can proceed to complement it with a smile. Whenever you're out and you meet someone at the office's break room, on the train, or shopping at the grocery store, and the person is directly looking at you, make sure you give a smile. You'll notice that most people will have a positive reaction with a high tendency to smile back. This returned smile can help to make you feel more confident.
  • Greeting other people: Now, it's time to combine the eye contact and the smile and introduce greetings. Or perhaps, just graduate to the greeting aspect. You can just give a compliment, ask for advice, or say hello. When you do this more, there's a tendency that you'll feel more natural about it and before you know it, you're out of your shell...    
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12 Powerful Listening Skills to Improve Your Life at Work and Home

Despite how important listening is, a lot of us still find it difficult to invest the time and effort to become a better listener. Listening is a very valuable skill in the workplace and it has a huge impact on the growth of businesses and leadership. In this age, active listening is a challenge and an array of factors such as advancements in technology, social media, and ever-growing to-do lists tend to add to the perpetual distractions we face. As significant as listening is, the struggle to listen remains but there are a few steps you can follow and a couple of tips you can make use of to power your listening skills and improve both your home and work relationships

1.Listen to understand.
When it comes to active listening, this component cannot be shrugged off. You must not listen with a prejudged conclusion but with an open mind. Be intentional to understand. When you do this, you'll be able to ask questions that are well-timed and appropriate, instead of making several interruptions when the story is being told. When you listen and aim to understand, this means that you're going into the conversation genuinely and you'll be conscious of noting all the unspoken words such as nonverbal and verbal cues.

2. Use interruptions sparingly.
Many people are fond of this. Once someone is having a conversation with them, the only thing they've programmed in their mind is how to quickly “chip in” something, which is probably to disagree with what's said. Using interruptions sparingly is very vital when you're practicing active listening. Before you chip in your interpretation of what the speaker has said or come up with your questions, make sure you let the speaker finish his or her thought.

Oftentimes, we have an untamed eagerness to interrupt people because of the thoughts that have been sparked by their comments Little do we know that these interruptions tend to send a message like “I no longer have interest in what you're saying because you're taking too long” or “You don't know as much as I do.”...

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Communication at the Workplace

If you want to succeed in your workplace, you need communication. And speaking of success, you as an employee as well as the company have a good chance of enjoying success when good communication ensues. If you're working with a team at your workplace, you'll need to communicate clearly and consistently so that you can get things done and achieve your goals because poor communication can make the team and the company suffer huge impacts.

The Relevance of Communication in the Workplace

The relationships you have with those you work with can be impacted by good communication. Working with your clients, bosses, and coworkers demands that you learn to communicate well, but when you don't have the skill, there's a probability that your chances of success will be blurred.

When you're in a leadership position at your workplace, you should know that your team expects you to give them clear information. With the clear information you give, you'll be carrying everyone along on the vision and no one would be left hanging. However, if you don't communicate well, you'll be left to captain a rudderless ship. Communication is immensely vital in three areas of our work....

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Four Tips for Finding a Good Mentor

Mentors provide guidance and advice to a person or group by sharing their expertise and experience. A good mentor will help you grow in every way, including new business and work skills, by helping you hone your principles, morals, and values. They should also be able to offer constructive criticism when necessary to help you develop the skills needed to improve your career or life.

In other words, a mentor can guide you through your career, share your experience, and offer advice. Mentors can help you make proper decisions about your future. They can be found in many different places such as in the workplace, school, or even within a family. A mentor can be anyone from a family member to a friend or co-worker, but they are most often professionals in the same field as the mentee.

Here are four tips on finding a good mentor.

Make a List and Start Asking

Start by making a list of those you would love to be your mentor. Even if it's impossible, still write it down. For example, if you want a famous mentor, they will likely not help you, but you never know. Your list of potential mentors will give you a good idea of the qualities they need to have to help you grow and gain the information you need to be successful and happy.

Once you have your list, find a way to reach out to them and ask. Sometimes all it takes is asking for them to provide mentorship.

Be Clear about Your Needs

Before working with a mentor, be clear about your goals and expectations. Knowing what you want from the relationship is essential before getting started. What do you need from them and hope to achieve from the partnership? If you are not ready to answer these questions, you need to figure them out before reaching out to people. This way, you can find the right mentor for you.

Research within Your Industry

Find someone who offers mentoring as a service by researching within your industry. This can be done by looking through social media or making a simple Google search. You can even go directly to industry leaders' websites to find out what services they offer aside from their main gig.

Provide Something in Return

A healthy mentor and mentee relationship is not only one-sided. Believe it or not, you too can offer something to your mentor. For example, allowing a manager over 70 years old access to your life at 30 years old can be invaluable for them too.

Finding the right mentor for you can be challenging but it’s very much worth the effort. Mentors have the crucial knowledge from their experience to help you improve your skills and grow. However, it is vital to find the right mentor to make it worthwhile. The wrong mentor can leave you confused, lost, and demotivated. With these tips, you can be sure you find the right mentor for you.

How to Make Daring Career Decisions

People head to work each day and complete the tasks required of them. They do this day in and day out, even though it isn’t rewarding for most. So why do they do it? They like the security of having a steady paycheck.

There is more to life than a paycheck and many are starting to realize this. It could be that it’s easier than ever to start a business. Before the internet, the only real choices were a brick-and-mortar type of business. That is still viable for some. But, for others, an online business is the way to go.

Still, it can be quite scary to throw your entire career away to start up something new. Just because it’s easy to start a business today, doesn’t mean business is easy. The competition is growing daily. And, the competition is from people all over the world. Giving up the security of that paycheck is not a decision to be made lightly.

One push for people to start something new is they are finding that their jobs are not as secure as they once thought. Layoffs and downsizing happen at regular intervals. Even people who survive the cuts will be expected to work harder and longer hours. Often, their salaries are reduced and bonuses are something for the history books.

People get to the point where they don’t feel secure and they resent having to do more work for the same (or even less) pay. This can give them the motivation they need to branch out on their own. The good news is many people can start these businesses on the side and continue to earn paychecks until their new business earns money. When this happens, they take on a new mental outlook of hope knowing that a better life is possible.

They also learn they can charge to coach others to do the same. This movement feeds off of itself as more dare to realize their dreams of owning their own business. It can be related to their field or they can branch off into something entirely different. Imagine getting paid for something you love! The possibilities are endless.

Don’t quit your job until you know what kind of business you are going to start and come up with a business plan. Also, seek out help from qualified people. You may have to pay some money upfront for their expertise, but it may be well worth the effort later.

Easy Ways to Improve
Conversation

If you've been scouting for a skill to learn, it's advisable that you consider
beefing up your conversation skills which also fall under communication.
For you to be able to build solid relationships and relate with your
partners, family, and friends, you need to know how to hold a good
conversation because it's likely that many people will want to avoid you if
you have poor conversational skills. Communicating with someone with
poor conversational skills can be quite frustrating.

Being a Good Listener

Listening is the number one thing in conversations and it's also one of the
vital rudiments of a conversation. Unfortunately, a lot of people do not
really understand how vital listening is in the communication process
because they feel communication is all about making their voices heard.

When you practice the art of listening, it shows that you respect people
and it will pave an easy path for you to build rapport. The beautiful thing
about listening is that it makes people become attracted to you. Somehow,
you'll just notice that out of several other people, you'll become the
favorite everyone wants to speak to. Why? Because you listen.

As simple as listening seems to be, a lot of people find it to be nauseating.
Yet, you cannot communicate to the person you are having a conversation
with that you care when you don't listen. Think of it yourself, how do you
feel when you're talking to someone and the person is listening intently to
you?

Now, think otherwise, do you also feel the same way when the person
you're talking to doesn't listen? You see, listening is a simple, silent but
powerful act that can take your conversations to the next level and
improve your relationships. Nevertheless, it's worthy to point out that
there's a difference between being shy and listening, irrespective of the
fact that people tend to mix the two up. You might be hesitant or shy and
may not be listening...

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How to Overcome Bad Decisions

There is nobody on earth who can lay claim to never making a bad decision. People make too many decisions for them not to make bad decisions once-in-a-while. Hopefully, those decisions have little impact. However, there will be occasions where you make some that have big consequences.

It’s going to happen.  You try to do everything in your power to avoid these bad decisions. Perhaps, the information you needed was not available at the time you made the decision.  Or, someone gave you the wrong data, whether intentionally or not. It’s possible you made a rash decision without giving much thought to the consequences of the decision. Whatever the case, the result may turn into an unpleasant and stressful situation.

You need to face up to the consequences. Take ownership of the decision and don’t pass the blame. It’s possible you will have to deal with someone if they didn’t give you the right information or they deceived you in some manner. Their action may be the cause of the wrong decision, and you have to choose if you should let that person go as a result. However, if you were the one that was responsible for making the final decision, then the consequences of that decision rests with you.

Stay confident and don’t panic. Learn about what happened and why. Then, try to find ways to reduce the impact of your decision. If it is a business decision that costs your company some money, make sure you let your management know about it right away. Don’t try to ignore the problem thinking that management may not notice. They will be upset when a mistake costs the company money. But, they will be even more upset if you don’t make it known in a timely fashion.

Don’t be afraid to talk to someone who may be able to help with the situation. It could be your boss or a mentor. They may be able to shed some insight into the situation. In fact, you could be blowing the situation out of proportion, and they will know how to get you out of it. But, they can only help if you give them timely information about it.

If the situation requires presenting your case to higher-level management, try to prepare alternatives on how to reverse the situation or reduce the impact. If these managers see that you have taken control of the situation, they may decide to let you run with the alternatives, although probably with a watchful eye of your manager.

How not to be
Misunderstood: Practicing Effective
Communication

Two cannot walk together except if they agree and therefore communication has always been a tool to facilitate understanding between people and help us carry out our usual activities without glitches. Maybe you have a presentation, you're writing an email, or carrying out any simple task, your progress and productivity can be affected by how you communicate.

As a result, it becomes expedient that both the message receiver and sender do not have miscommunication accruing from the delivered message. In today's world, technology has made communication easier but regardless, many people still find it herculean to communicate without being misunderstood or misinterpreted.

5 Killer Skills to Make Your Message Clear 

There are two major forms of communication, which are written and verbal. If you're going to be communicating orally or you're employing a written medium, the first thing you should do is to proofread and scrutinize what you have prepared before you proceed to finalize the copy.

It would also be helpful if you can look out for other possible interpretations of the message to know if there's any need to make further...

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What Is A Decision?

Some people contend, that in it's simplest form, life is a series of choices. This is, in some sense, true. Except that it's not that simple, because life itself is not that simple. The complexity of life or, rather, living a life, means that the choices the average individual faces over the course of a lifetime are equally complex.

These choices range from simple survival decisions (Should I eat that mushroom?), to difficult moral personal choices (Should I speak out against this injustice and incur increased personal risk?) Obviously, the one thing that all these decisions have in common are the option of choosing action and outcome. However, because the nature of of these various actions, and their potential outcomes, vary wildly, no one strategy can encompass the process of deciding between them This is where an understanding of what a decision is becomes important.

A decision is, of course, the action of deciding something. A person faced with a choice, makes a choice. The most basic example of this is the proverbial fork in the road. When facing a fork in the road, you have the choice of going left or going right. You stop for a period of time while you think, then you decide to go either left or right. Once the decision has been made you take the path you've chosen.

That's straightforward and obvious, right? To some extent, the answer to that question is yes. To a greater extent, however, the answer is no. To become a more efficient and more focused decision maker, you need to understand all the processes that went into making the simple decision above.

First, there was a problem. The path you were walking on divided into two. Second, there was the nature of the problem. Because the path divided, you were forced to go either left or right to reach your destination. Third, you needed to choose between these two options in order to continue. Fourth, you utilized your experience, knowledge and intuition to decide which option was best suited to  your needs. Fifth, you actually made the decision. Finally, you, once again, began moving forward towards your destination based on that decision.

As you can see, the simplest of decisions entails a number of steps. In most cases, we handle these steps subconsciously, without really being aware of what it is we are doing. When the decision we are faced with is simple, this "autopilot" method of choosing isn't a problem. However, when more complex decisions need to be made, not understanding the process can give rise to difficulties.

Decision Making Skills

Are you good at making decisions? The skill is natural for some people while others struggle to make even the most basic decisions. While personality types can play a role in one’s ability to make decisions, it’s also a skill that can be learned.

One reason people don’t like to make decisions is they don’t want to be held responsible for the outcomes. This reluctance is a defense mechanism as others may criticize you if you don’t choose wisely. It could erode the confidence others have in you regarding your ability to make decisions. However, you can take steps to reduce it from happening.

One of the main factors in decision making is confidence. Therefore, building confidence will help you make decisions. Others will also follow your lead as they will respect your confidence. When you make decisions with confidence, they have no choice but to recognize your authority.

Decision making requires finding out the right information. You won’t get far if you start making decisions without information to back them. You need to be informed when making your decisions which means you have a bit of detective work to do. You have to get as many of the facts as you can before making most decisions.

Often, you won’t get all the facts you need for one reason or another. In this case, you will need to take a leap of faith and rely on your confidence when making decisions. That’s an unfortunate part of the process and one that makes people choose wrong directions sometimes. But, as long as you decide using the information you have available, you can defend your choice.

As part of the decision-making process, consider coming up with alternatives. List out all possible alternatives based on the current information. You can rate the alternatives on a scale of your choosing. This rating can help you when making the decision. You can choose a star-rating system or a percentage system (0-100), etc.

Another technique people like to use is to list out the pros and the cons. To do this, take out a blank piece of paper and write a dividing line in the center. Create the heading “Pros” on the left, and “Cons” on the right. Then, list out the pros and the cons. You can use this to guide you with your decision. Try not to make this process too mechanical as the list may contain several subjective items.

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