Do You Equate Boring with Serious?

Do you believe the only way to become a thought leader in your field is to express yourself in as dry a manner as possible?

Do you use data or graphs your audience won’t be able to read so your opinion seems well-researched?

Do you obfuscate your  meaning with words like obfuscate to make yourself feel smarter?

Do you wonder why you have a hard time bringing outsiders into your fold?

Unless you work in web development, gaming, or some corners of the internet marketing sector, the answer to these questions is most likely yes.  It also explains why if I were to sum up my consulting practice into one sentence it would be:

Stop sapping the awesome out of your inherently amazing work. Continue reading

The Art of Practice: Discovering your Voice

This week’s small voices–big messages  post comes from my friend, client and new blogger, Lesley Howard.  Any further intro from me would just take away from Lesley’s amazing gift with words, so I’ll step back and let her tell her story.

My momma done me wrong, but taught me right . . .

Those of you who already know me have most likely heard the sorrowful story of my mom’s early years (abusive, alcoholic father & corresponding Dysfunctional Family; frequent, violent, dead-of-night moves one step ahead of the debt collectors; inadequate nutrition or education; etcetera etcetera etcetera). Her response to that childhood was to become an intellectual woman with bucketfuls of discipline – enough to keep her conscious mind free of memories of molestation for fifty-plus years. This level of control also rendered her frequently unable to respond appropriately to my emotional needs.

As I tend to be on the “delicate flower” end of the emotional spectrum, it took me ‘til I was about thirty-five to see my way clear to peace with my mother’s legacy (complicated by her death when I was 31), and ten years since then to pick out the bits of my Self from the rubble (thanks to the engineer husband and some remarkably sane and forgiving friends. And those therapists and antidepressants and Julia Cameron I referred to in the first post!).

A big part of the rubble- sieving occurred when I became a parent myself and witnessed, to my horror, my (unintentional) mistakes flowing forth freely and profusely every day I interacted with my kids. I witness evidence of those errors every time my older son yells at his brother for a minor infraction, or my younger son storms out of the room in frustration (yep, we are an intense household. Nuclear power plants got nothing on us when we really get going). Continue reading

Newsletter as Social Media

Image via Wikipedia

Get ready, get set. . .

If 2011 is the year for you to jump in to the social media pool, start with an e-mail newsletter.

This may seem like strange advice.  After all, bloggers were already heralding the death of e-mail in 2007.  So why would I suggest that now, in 2011, you wait to build a Facebook presence until after you have a newsletter?

Because the rumors of e-mail death are  vastly overstated.

In fact, unless your supporters are mostly teenagers, e-mail is your best bet for sending messages that actually get read. Continue reading