The Role Of Role Playing

In our last blog, we told the story on storytelling. We discussed finding the right yarn and offered tips on telling your tall tale well. Hear the story.

Today, we’ll discuss how to use role playing, both professionally and personally.

We’re not pretending to be the have all and be all of role play discussions here. We’re talking about a specific use of it. So let’s define what we mean when we say role play:

Practicing human interaction before you actually do it.

Rehearsing in your mirror is better than nothing, but it’s not role playing. With role playing, you’re going to have a mentor, a peer, or a buddy. When done right, it’s a much richer experience than simply rehearsing.

Practice makes perfect.
Imagine an athlete who never practiced. Or an actor who never rehearsed. Would you expect them to rise to the top of their profession?

So why do we think it’s any different for us? It’s not. By role playing, you’ll enter situations with more confidence, because you’ve been there before. You’ll face less stress and perform better. You’ve made the unfamiliar familiar.

Simulate the situation.
Create the exact same environment. Come as close as you possibly can to setting up the same circumstances you will face in the actual situation. This really needs to be done with you and another person face-to-face. You can role play over the phone (especially a phone call), but it’s much better in person. Let’s look at some examples of situations that you might want to role play.

Annual review / ask for a raise
Are you going to be sitting or standing? How about your boss? Most likely, you’ll both be seated around a desk. So when you role play, sit around a desk (or something you can pretend is a desk).

Sales call
You’ll probably be standing, at least at first. Practice your greeting while standing. Practice down to the handshake. You want a handshake Goldilocks would like – not too hard, not too soft.

Service call at homeowner’s residence
Practice ringing the door bell. What if the door bell doesn’t work? Practice knocking. Where will you stand as the homeowner opens the door? What will you say?

You can use these same techniques personally. For example, if you’re a parent, you may want to role play an important conversation with one of your kids. Personally or professionally, role playing is a great preparation method. Practice it, then do it.

Our quote today is by the great tennis player, Arthur Ashe.

“One important key to success is self-confidence.
An important key to self-confidence is preparation.”

Willingness to prepare helps you succeed. Role play your way to a great day.

Tomorrow’s the day before Thanksgiving here in the U.S. So we’re going to talk about ‘taters. We’ll ask, “What kind of ‘tater are you?”

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

The Story On Storytelling

Last time, we discussed the single biggest barrier to your success – the fear of failure. We challenged you to cultivate the fear of not trying so you overcome the fear of failure.
Don’t forget to keep visualizing your future!

Today, we want to discuss storytelling – how to tell the right story right. To get the most benefit from this, you really should listen to today’s show. It’s really easy to do. Just click on the “triangle” above.

If you don’t want to do that, you can read it here. If you’re a history buff, we highly recommend the site where we got this story: Boston 1775.

Longfellow’s Dilemma
Do you remember the famous poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow that starts like this:

Listen my children, and you shall hear,
Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere.

Of course, the purpose of Revere’s ride was to warn the people of the colonies that the British were coming.

But did you know that Longfellow faced a dilemma after he wrote this poem.  You see, there was a second rider that night. A gentleman by the name of William Dawes. And the Dawes family didn’t take kindly to Longfellow’s failure to mention their ancestor.

So, why did Longfellow single out Revere? We need some background before we can answer that question.

Some time before Longfellow wrote his poem, Revere was asked to record the events of that fateful evening. And Revere delivered exactly what was expected – a riveting account about the start of the American Revolution that historians have used ever since.

So why did Longfellow single out Revere in his famous poem?

Because Paul Revere told a great story!

The two parts to telling the right story right

Stories advance your message by capturing your audience.  So, it follows, good storytelling helps advance your career. 

Telling stories well, though, isn’t always easy.  So here’s the story on storytelling.

Get the right story

  • Your story must relate to your audience and your topic.Your story should naturally lead to or from your topic.
  • Your story should be proportional to your presentation; you can’t spend half of your  presentation telling a story.
  • Your story must ring true, but should describe a situation that is out-of-the-ordinary.
  • Your story should present a problem faced by the main character.
  • Your story should have a happy ending … or at least be uplifting to your audience.

Get the story right

  • Pretend you’re telling your story to your best friend.
  • Tell your story from one character’s point-of-view.
  • Develop the story fully.  You want to paint a picture in the mind of your audience. That’s worth a thousand words, right?
  • Vary your pace with the activity of the story.  Describe a flurry with rapidity and so on. This helps your audience feel the story.
  • Use moments of silence for emphasis.
  • Don’t rush through the punch line.
  • It is okay to embellish, but you should not lie.

Stories connect you with your audience by capturing their attention. Choose the right story and tell it right and you’ll be a hit every time!

Our quote today is by the author, Philip Pullman.

“’Thou shalt not’ is soon forgotten, but ‘Once upon a time’ lasts forever.”

That’s the story on storytelling. Tell the right story right and you’ll live happily ever after.

Next time, we’ll look at the role of role playing.

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

 

The Single Biggest Barrier To Your Success

Yesterday, we traveled to your future. To the life you dream about. We helped you visualize your future and challenged you to perform this visualization exercise every day for the next month.

Today, we’ll look at the single biggest barrier to your success. You may surprised to hear this.

The one big thing that stands between most people and success is fear.
We’re taught that fear is a good thing. And it can be. But it also can be counterproductive. One fear, in particular, keeps most people from achieving their dreams.

The most dangerous fear of all is the fear of failure.
This fear keeps more people from starting toward their dream, let alone actually accomplishing it, than anything else. As we mature, we get more self-conscious. We’re afraid we’ll be embarrassed. Afraid to be different. Afraid of being made fun of.

Plan to fail forward.
Successful people look at failure as an opportunity to learn. So the faster you fail, the faster you learn. Fail often enough and you have a leg up on all of those people who fear failure. Isn’t that most people?

Successful people are driven by the fear of not trying.
We got this idea from a great little book called I Can’t Accept Not Trying by Michael Jordan, the great basketball player. It’s a quick read that we highly recommend.

Have you ever been so fed up with something that you just had to do something about it? Of course, you have. All of us have!

W. Clement Stone, in his book The Success System That Never Fails, referred to this feeling as “inspirational dissatisfaction”. You can overcome your fear of failure by cultivating this fear of not trying. When you just can’t stand it any more. You have to find out if you can do it.

People who go for it reach a point where their fear of not trying exceeds their fear of failure. So they go for it. Some succeed beyond their wildest imaginations. Others fail forward. So they try again.

Our quote today is by Winston Churchill.

“Success is never final.
Failure is never fatal.
It’s courage that counts.”

Overcome your fears by living your dreams. What can you lose by trying?

Next time, we’ll tell the story on storytelling. How and why to tell a story well.

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Back To The Future: Visualizing The Life You Want (Part 2)

Yesterday, we started this series by visualizing a childhood experience.To get the most out of today’s discussion, we highly recommend that you read this prior blog before you proceed.

Today we’ll jump to the future, to help you visualize the life you want. Before we do that, though, let’s look at three constraints that we all face.

    1. Money

We’re trained to believe that money is limited. And it is —at this point. But this may surprise you. You can get more money! In fact, we bet you plan to get more. So money is limited, but there’s an even bigger constraint. What, you ask, is that?

    1. Time

Yes, we can get more money, but we can never get more time. We can only manage the time we have better. Every day, we’re given 86,400 units of this most precious resource. Every second, one unit of it is gone forever. Do you hear that sound? That’s the sound of time ticking away. However, we still haven’t considered the biggest constraint of all.

    1. Self-imposed limitations

By far, the biggest constraint we face is the limitations we put on ourselves. Think about it. How often do you tell yourself that you can’t do something? We spend so much time focusing on what we can’t do, that we fail to see what we can do. Get your child-like wonder back. Think like a kid again. Imagine the possibilities.

Now that we’ve looked at our constraints, we’re ready to jump to the future. We’re going to ask you a question. To answer it, we want you to suspend reality, for just a little bit. Pretend. Remember pretending? It will serve you well. We’re going to remove all of the constraints that keep you from contemplating what you really want out of your life. So here’s the question:

If neither time nor money were an issue,
how would you spend your time and your money?

Think about it. Dream. Dream like you did when you were a kid. Imagine the possibilities. Use all of your senses. Get a clear picture in your mind. Envision your passions. See the life you want to live.

Write down your dream. Repeat this visualization every day for the next 30 days. Edit your narrative. We’ll come back again in about a month and discuss how to use your talents to get the future you envision.

Our quote today is a paraphrase of Robert Kennedy, paraphrasing Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Some people look at things that are, and ask, ‘Why?’
I see things that never have been, and ask, ‘Why not?’

So we say to you — why not? Why not imagine the life you want?

In our next blog, we’ll discuss the single biggest barrier to your success.

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Back To The Future: Visualizing The Life You Want (Part 1)

Yesterday, we discussed the four things you must do to insure success for your peace of mind. Today we want to introduce a visualization exercise to help you find your dream.

Start by visualizing your past.

Before we go to your future, let’s go back to your past. Why? Because it’s easier to remember, than it is to project. By practicing this exercise in your past, it will be easier for you to envision your future.

Imagination is more important than intelligence.

In his book, The Millionaire Mind Thomas Stanley cites surveys that show that millionaires believe that their “creative intelligence” is much more important in explaining their success than traditional intelligence.

Now, let’s do some time traveling … a visualization exercise.

We believe you will get more benefit by listening to this, rather than reading it. However, it’s your choice. Either way, we recommend that you find a quiet place where you can be alone before you proceed.

So use your imagination. When we get into this visualization exercise, create a clear picture of the environment you’re in. Use all of your senses and your emotions. Experience it as if you were actually living that moment now.

The Visualization Exercise

Think back to when you were a kid. Remember playing. Just having fun. No worries. No fears.

Picture yourself doing that favorite activity. Picture your surroundings. Can you seem them?

What do you hear? Can you smell that? That old familiar smell tucked away in your brain.

Are you touching something? Can you taste anything?

What are you feeling? Not with your hands. With our heart and your soul.

Enjoy this wonderful place. Take in its beauty.

How do you feel right now? Isn’t it wonderful?

You’re free. You have no limits. You’re uninhibited.

How do your feel? You’re relaxed. You’re excited.

Isn’t this a special place? Keep enjoying it. Isn’t this an extraordinary feeling?

You had big plans, didn’t you? The world was your oyster.

There wasn’t anything you couldn’t do. Nothing you couldn’t conquer.

Nothing could stop you. Keep focusing on this place.

This place with no worries. No fears. No loss. No stress. No pressure.

It’s exceptional, isn’t it? No time constraints. You can stay here all day. Enjoy it just a little bit more.

Concluding Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed your trip down memory lane. Next time, we’ll use this visualization tool to help you find your dream.

Our quote today is by the noted author and philosopher, Henry David Thoreau.

“If you advance confidently in the direction of your dreams,
and endeavor to live the life which you have imagined,
you will meet with success unexpected.”

So just imagine it, then live it. We know you can!

Next time, we’ll continue this series, by visualizing your future. The future of your dreams.

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!