Category Archives: Jennifer Powers

Reactions: The Superpower You Didn’t Know You Had

By Jennifer Powers

Jennifer Power-Take Control of your Career

You are not in control of everything. That’s right. As much as you’d like to try, you cannot control all that goes on around you. Unlikeable policies will be made, people will say and do things that upset you, clients will come and go, your business will ebb and flow. And there’s not much you can do about it. Or is there?

One way to gain back a bit of control of your career is to understand that things don’t happen to you, or against you. Things just happen. You are not here to control what happens. Your job is to control how you react to what happens. And the way you react determines how your work-life unfolds from that point on.  Hence, utilizing the power over what is actually within your control.

So, people and circumstances can show up (or throw up) in your life however they may, but you get to choose how you react to those things. And what you may not realize is that REACTIONS = REALITY. Think about it. How you react in one moment will have a direct impact on your reality the very next moment.

If you want to take more control of your REALITY you need to take more control of your REACTIONS. Click To Tweet

It works like this:

R = R
(Reactions = Reality)
so
CR = CR
(Crappy Reactions = Crappy Reality)
 and
PR = PR
(Positive Reactions = Positive Reality)

A simple illustration. The stock market takes a dive. Mark, Kelly, and Jim all lose their shorts. Mark panics, feels vulnerable and sells all his shares. Kelly, experiencing the same loss, chooses to see this as an opportunity and buys more while the price is low. Jim is a scaredy-cat and is afraid to do anything, so he doesn’t.

Later, when the market shifts, Kelly makes out the best, Jim does okay, and Mark is too busy kicking himself to do the math.

The reality was the same for all three people: the stock market took a tumble and they all lost money. There was nothing any of them could do to control or prevent that from happening. But each of them had control over how they reacted to it. They each reacted in a different way, so they each ended up with a different reality.

So it stands to reason then that if you want to take more control of your REALITY you need to take more control of your REACTIONS. But how do you do that when reactions are like wild horses? They often run amuck and sometimes you feel like you have no control of them at all. 

Start with this simple three-step formula:

1. Observe And Resist Your “Knee-Jerk” Reaction

Observe how you would tend to react when things don’t go your way and resist going there. You’ve got better plans for your career. Give yourself time and space to allow any negative reactions to flow through you. By pausing, you are allowing your “fight or flight” mechanism time to calm down and giving yourself a second to regain your composure. Consider taking deep belly breaths, counting to ten or humming a tune. This will occupy the space that a crappy reaction would normally take up.

2. Ask Yourself A Question

To redirect your focus, ask yourself a question. Not just any question, but one that will help you shift into a more positive mindset from which you can react. Here are a few examples to get you started:

 What about this situation can I be grateful for? What belief or opinion would serve me better? How do I deserve to feel? Who would love to switch places with me? 

Feel free to come up with your own powerful questions that will shift you into a positive mindset.

3. Answer The Question

You can’t skip this step. If you only ask yourself the question you are only halfway there. The shift in perspective and your ability to react from a more positive outlook occurs when you answer the question. This part may be challenging at first but push through it because the payoff is big.

Imagine the scene. Some unrealistically tight deadlines are handed down to you at work.

  • You Observe And Resist the knee-JERK reaction to complain, moan and gossip.
  • You Ask Yourself: “What can I turn this into?”
  • You Answer: “A chance to highlight my ability to perform well under pressure.”
  • Your Reality: You calmly and coolly respond with an “I’ll handle that!” and your boss sees you as a shining star. 

Remember, seemingly bad things happen to everyone. You’re not alone in that.  But you have way more power over your day, your week and your life than you may recognize.  The moment you begin to take control of your reactions you begin to take control of your reality. 

Jennifer Powers, MCC is an international speaker, executive coach, author of the best-selling book “Oh, shift!” and host of the fun and binge-worthy “Oh, shift!” podcast. Since founding her speaking practice, Jennifer has worked with hundreds of professionals and delivered powerful keynote addresses to over 250,000 people around the globe. For more information on bringing Jennifer Powers to your next event, please visit www.ohshift.com

Understanding the Weight of Words in the Workplace

3 Ways Words Work Wonders in Elevating Professional Performance

By Jennifer Powers

your words

You can create an awesome shift in your business or professional career right now. One of the easiest ways to do that is with your words. Yes. Words.

Your words have a direct influence over your results. All. The. Time.

Tell yourself you’ll never get the promotion. Done.
Tell yourself you’re always a day late and a dollar short and you will be.
Tell yourself you won’t close the sale. That’s right.
Tell yourself you’ll bomb the interview. OK. No problem.

Curious about how this works?

What you saywill influence what you think.
What you think will influence how you feel.
How you feel will influence what you do.
What you do will influence your results.

…Every time.

You may already know this. Yet, it’s possible that you rarely give enough attention or credit to the effects that words can have on your every day. Think about it this way…

You are given a blank canvas everyday. Your words are your paint.

For example, if you say, “This is going to be a difficult day at the office.” then chances are, it will be. However, if you say, “This day will bring me lots of opportunities for growth.” then you’re one step closer to manifesting that reality. When you choose words that are in alignment with the experience, life, relationships, and business you want to create, you are standing in your power and taking greater control over your desired outcome.

Words give you power and control. Are you using them in ways that serve you or defeat you?

You have the ability to attract more of what you want by choosing your words with thought and intention. Click To Tweet

Here are a few ways to help you use your words to get you more of what you want.

Eradicate and replace

Take stock. Examine the words you use to describe the status of your business? Or take a good look at the clients you are attracting into your practice (or not attracting) and consider how your words may have played a part in that reality. Because they did.

Next, commit to eradicating those non-productive words from your vocabulary and choose words that you will use in their place. For example, maybe you notice that you respond to the question “How’s business?” with words like “Slow” or “Not like it used to be”. Doing so will just create more of that reality for yourself. Consider replacing those responses with words like “Pretty good, thanks!” or “Getting better every day”. And watch what happens.

Remember, you have the ability to attract more of what you want by choosing your words with thought and intention.

Watch your tone

If you can think of the words that you choose as the cake, then the tone that they are delivered is the icing on said cake. In other words, tone can easily cover up or hide the true meaning of your words, if you’re not careful.When you want to use your words to positively affect your results you can’t discount your delivery.

Studies show that 7 percent of any spoken message is conveyed through words, 38 percent through certain vocal elements, and 55 percent through nonverbal elements (facial expressions, gestures, posture, etc). 

Quite unlike email correspndence, telephone communications rely 18 percent on words and 82 percent on tone.
How often are you focusing on the tone of your spoken words and the effects it can have on the reciever?

Here’s a quick exercise to examine the dramatic differences. Try saying the following statements in three different tones: Enthusiastic, Neutral, and Angry

  • “I don’t know.”
  • “It’s no big deal.”
  • “You’re unbelievable.”

You get it. Watch your tone.

Share the love

As leaders and professionals, you know that the words you say to your collegues, superiors, and direct reports can have a tremenedous impact on them, affecting their outlook, job performance, creativity and efficacy.

Why not use that to your advantage AND theirs?

There are at least two dozen opportunities each day for you to offer others a word of praise, a compliment, a congratulations, or a thank you. It’s so easy, but I am willing to bet that you are not doing it as often as you could.

Taking time to share positive words with the people you work with will LITERALLY change them, change you, and change the dynamic of your relationship. This has immediate payoffs. Too many to list here.

Instead here’s a list of a few things you might say to someone else to share the love:

  • Nice job!
  • I appreciate you.
  • You make a difference here.
  • I believe in you.
  • Thanks for your hard work.

If this feels awkward at first, that’s natural. But if you can step out of your comfort zone and make the effort, the results will blow you away. Best part? Words are free, accesible and so abundant. Use them to help others be their best and build relationships that grow.

In summary, using your words to positively affect your life and others’ lives is a choice. Now that you know how, I challenge you to give it a try and reap the benefits. You so deserve that.

Jennifer Powers, MCC is an international speaker, executive coach, author of the best-selling book “Oh, shift!,” and host of the fun and binge-worthy “Oh, shift!” podcast. Since founding her speaking practice, Jennifer has worked with hundreds of professionals and delivered powerful keynote addresses to over 250,000 people around the globe. For more information on bringing Jennifer Powers to your next event, please visit www.ohshift.com.

Harness Your Professional Power: Be a Victor not a Victim

By Jennifer Powers

Jennifer Poweres- power of choice

Have you ever found yourself making statements like these…?

“I’m miserable at work because my boss is a jerk.”

“I’d work harder if they paid me more.”

“I’d get more work done if my co-workers weren’t always interrupting me.”

”I would get more sales if I had better leads.”

“If the economy were better I wouldn’t be in this financial mess.”

Surely you have. You’re human.

But the truth is, when you make statements like these you are blaming other people, things, and circumstances for your reality being the way it is. You are holding everyone and everything else responsible for YOUR outcomes, feelings, actions, reactions, and choices. And when you do that you’re acting like…wait for it…a victim. Ouch.

If that wasn’t ugly enough, when you choose to play the victim you’re literally GIVING YOUR POWER AWAY to the person or thing you hold responsible for your state of affairs. They don’t even ask for it. You just GIVE. IT. AWAY. Your power is far too valuable to give it away. And hopefully, it goes without saying that if you’re freely giving away your power like that, you’ll find you have less and less on hand to help you reach your professional goals. Oh, and with less power, your performance will suffer too. But you know this, right?

So, here’s something…You’re no victim. YOU are not a victim. Nope. Not you. You’re not a victim … unless of course you choose to be.
That’s right. In every moment of every day you can choose to either play the victim or the victor. In other words, you get to choose to give your power away or hold onto it. Bam.

Choose it. Own it. Be it. Click To Tweet

Want to hold onto it? Good choice.

In order to choose the victor role and hold onto your power, you must be willing to take some responsibility for things. After all, some responsibility must be yours. It’s YOUR reality we’re talking about here. See, once you realize that you own a chunk of the responsibility in any situation, you can then own your power and begin to realize the control you have over the situation. So when you’re ready to be a victor, here are the three areas you’ll want to focus on:

FEELINGS

Victims hold other people and things responsible for the way they feel. They relish in the opportunity to blame their misery/sadness/anger/etc. on others. This keeps them small and powerless. For example, Steve, a long-time bank employee, does this whenever he blames his boss for his frustrations at work. He says if his boss weren’t so demanding, he would be happier at work.

For Steve to step into the victor role, he would have to take full responsibility and ownership for the way he feels. Sure, his boss may be demanding, and he can’t control that. But he can control how he chooses to feel about his boss and his job. Steve could begin to take his power back by asking himself, “How do I deserve to feel?”

ACTIONS/REACTIONS

Victims make no connection between their actions/reactions and their reality. On the flip side, victors understand how their actions/reactions play a part in their reality. 

Karen, a department manager, chooses to play the victim when she gets frustrated that her employees never come to her when there’s a problem. She says that she is always “in the dark.” This frustration obviously keeps her from performing her best. To step into the victor role, Karen could try to identify the connection between her actions/reactions and her employees’ reluctance to come to her when there’s trouble. Karen could ask herself, “What might I have said or done to make my staff feel uncomfortable coming to me?”  

POWER OF CHOICE

Victims believe and act as if they have no choice. Back to Steve. Again, he plays the victim when he says he is “stuck with this job” that makes him so miserable. Steve is obviously forgetting that he is a whole and resourceful being with this awesome super power to choose. The difference here is that victors recognize and exercise their power of choice. They don’t feel stuck. They know that they always have at least two choices. So for Steve to step out of the victim role, he could ask himself, “What choices do I have?” It’s not until Steve recognizes and exercises his power of choice that he can take his power back and have more control over his reality.

So, all of this begs the question, who or what do you tend to blame for your reality, feelings, actions or reactions? What choices are you not recognizing? Not making?

By holding everyone and everything else responsible for your life being the way it is, you are holding yourself back from reaching your full potential. You’re staying small.

And you are not small.

Stop acting like you are.

Take your power back and watch what happens. Watch yourself bloom, grow, and thrive. Watch yourself be your best self. You deserve that. You are a victor and a very powerful one at that.
Choose it. Own it. Be it.

Jennifer Powers, MCC is an international speaker, executive coach, author of the best-selling book “Oh, shift!”, and host of the fun and binge-worthy “Oh, shift!” podcast. Since founding her speaking practice, Jennifer has worked with hundreds of professionals and delivered powerful keynote addresses to over 250,000 people around the globe. For more information on bringing Jennifer Powers to your next event, please visit www.ohshift.com.