GLOSSOPHOBIA

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Glossophobia or speech anxiety is the fear of public speaking or of speaking in general.[1] The word glossophobia comes from the Greek γλῶσσα glōssa, meaning tongue, and φόβος phobos, fear or dread. Many people only have this fear, while others may also have social phobia or social anxiety disorder. (source)

NEVER been a fan of this.  I can remember in 1st grade when I began competing in spelling bees (and doing quite well I might add) and the stage fright I would experience each and every time. Then it went on with our elementary Christmas plays, on to giving classes over soldier’s common task skills for the Army. Just not my thing.

Perhaps it has hampered my success considering I am more of a “behind the scenes” type of person. I would make the perfect researcher/scholar in that I love delving into facts….presenting them is another story. However, I also understand that in order to achieve certain goals in mind, I need to step out of my comfort zone and grab this bull by the horns.

There are many wonderful organizations out there for those of us who suffer this type of social anxiety. Here is a listing of just a few:

Toastmasters International

Toastmasters International is perhaps the most well-known public speaking organization in the world. TI boasts nearly 300,000 members in 116 countries around the globe. Their meetings, which occur at least monthly in every chapter, are not led by a teacher or trainer. Instead, members make presentations and evaluate one another on their speaking skills. Members are often asked to give short impromptu speeches. Exercises like this prepare speakers to field questions from audiences and potential clients. TI is a respected speaking organization and can provide great networking opportunities. TI does not base memberships on prior speaking qualification. Rather, TI is open to anyone who wishes to improve their public speaking skills and is willing to spend the time and effort to do so. It is an ideal organization for individuals new to public speaking. TI is also an excellent organization for business and community leaders who do not wish to speak professionally but must speak in the capacity of their jobs.

 

Rotary International & Rotary Clubs

The Rotary Club is widely known as a philanthropic organization which brings together business people and community leaders. Members of the Club, known as Rotarians, usually hold weekly meetings. The meetings are social events and also provide a time to plan and implement the Club’s service goals. The Rotary Club also helps members hone their public speaking skills. Rotarians enjoy representing their Club in their communities and so practice short speeches to explain their goals, projects, and service ethic. Generally, a Rotary Club meeting features a speech by a member. The speeches often relate to events and issues in the community, service the member has performed in the community or abroad, or business issues. Rotarians engage in open dialogue after speeches, which helps speakers further hone their audience relation skills. Rotary Clubs are also a great place to network.

The National Speakers Association

Unlike Toastmasters International and the Rotary Club, The National Speakers Association is exclusively for individuals who make a fee for speaking publicly or individuals who aspire to speak publicly as a profession. In addition to offering support and advice to public speakers, the NSA also offers entrepreneurial coaching. Learning how to effectively manage the business side of a speaking career is very important. The Academy for Professional Speaking is a special NSA program which helps speakers with serious skill make the leap to speaking for pay. The Academy combines distance learning with face-to-face classes over the course of a year. Every Academy culminates in a one-day institute that also serves as the opening for the NSA’s yearly conference.

The American Motivational Speakers Bureau

Also known as the American Speakers Bureau, this organization is similar to the NSA in that it offers benefits and services for tested professional speakers. The AMSB maintains an extensive listing of motivational speakers and their areas of specialty. Many of the speakers they represent are celebrities with strong backgrounds in public speaking. They provide consultation services to clients seeking speakers, meaning that they match professional speakers with a variety of paid speaking opportunities. In order to become listed with the AMSB, you will have to send in an extensive application that includes a sample of your speech program, references, professional live recordings of your speeches, and other pertinent information. Though becoming listed as an AMSB speaker can be time consuming, it is certainly worthwhile in terms of engagement opportunities.

Joining Speaking Organizations to Increase Skill & Entrepreneurship

Both experienced public speakers and those who are just beginning to hone their skills benefit from joining speaking organizations. These organizations help all speakers improve their presentations and gain the business acumen and confidence to succeed in the world of public speaking. These groups also help speakers understand what they need to do in order to gain an audience. No matter what your speaking level, practicing your presentations will always help you improve and can help you identify new topics and areas of interest you may be able to speak about.

(source)

Venting is a new hobby

iStock-000001624654XSmallThere is so much negativity in the world and our local/national news takes the cake when it comes to spewing forth toxic information.  With that being said, all of us who have a 9 to 5er are “used” to dealing with negativity whether that be co-workers or our bosses.

It is unconscionable dealing with certain individuals who think it’s there God-given right spreading either rumors or putting down fellow team mates.  What gives these people the right to either ridicule or spread lies about the work ethnic of others?

If you are not part of their “crowd” then God forbid if you step out of line…though the same favorites who do the exact same thing (and worse) always smell like a rose.

If you are unsure whether or not your boss has issues check this info out and leave me a comment about your own horror stories:

7 Signs of a Dysfunctional Boss

The game has rules, but the rules keep changing. It’s a relatively common but insidious game I call “chaos and control.” If they sense you becoming disloyal, too comfortable, or too powerful, they’ll want to knock you off the pedestal they’ve put you on. By bringing you down, it boosts their position relative to yours. One day you’re the golden boy, a trusted advisor who can do no wrong. The next day you’re a bumbling idiot.

Major focus on minutiae. One Fortune 500 CEO was obsessed with my clothes and appearance. He wasn’t alone in that peculiarity; it’s a sign of a controlling person. And whatever details get their maniacal attention, whatever the object of their obsessive compulsion, it’s really just a way to distract their brains from facing their own sadness, fear or depression. That’s why it’s often triggered by stress and bad news.

A “man of the people.” I just saw “The Last King of Scotland” about Uganda’s former President Idi Amin last week and nearly fell off my chair at how common that particular mantra is among dysfunctional leaders. In reality, they thrive on attention and adoration from the masses to feed their deep-seated insecurity but are rarely capable of any true emotional connection with others.

Hypersensitive and vindictive when rejected. Everything’s about them — you’re just a tiny little asteroid revolving around their planet-sized ego. Anything you do that they perceive as rejection, even if you’re just not letting them be the center of attention, is a personal affront. There will be repercussions. Some are direct, bullying or verbally abusive; others are more subtle, underhanded or passive-aggressive.

Failure is not an option. They’re always pointing fingers, making excuses, and blaming others because they can never really be wrong in their own eyes. They will say they’re not perfect, that they make mistakes, but you’ll never get them to admit to one in real time. To do so would potentially fracture that fragile facade of being special and Godlike. Deep inside, they’re really frightened children, which is why the pretense is so critical to maintain.

Loves distraction, hates surprises. They revel in the tiniest distraction. They can be entertained or even entertain themselves with surprisingly silly diversions. Anything to take them away from the depressing reality of boring, mundane, day-to-day life that mere mortals must endure. But surprise them with serious news, especially bad news in front of others, and you’re in big, big trouble.

Sees conspiracy everywhere. Since the world revolves around them, they see conspiracy in coincidence and deep meaning in incidental remarks. That’s why they so often overreact or even panic over what appears to be nothing. Little things become life-threatening. Why? Even though it’s stressful for them, it also affirms their self-importance and makes them feel big. Grandiosity is often a response to depression.

Change is in the air….

It is said that onset of the proverbial Mid-Life Crisis is 45………………………………

And, according the Wiki, Midlife crisis is a term coined in 1965 by Elliott Jaques stating a time where adults come to realize their own mortality and how much time is left in their life.[1] A midlife crisis is experienced by many people during the midlife transition when they realize that life may be more than halfway over. Sometimes, a crisis can be triggered by transitions experienced in these years, such as andropause or menopause, the death of parents or other causes of grief, unemployment or underemployment, realizing that a job or career is hated but not knowing how else to earn an equivalent living, or children leaving home. People may reassess their achievements in terms of their dreams. The result may be a desire to make significant changes in core aspects of day-to-day life or situation, such as in career, work-life balance, marriage, romantic relationships, large expenditures, or physical appearance.

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Yes, it’s about change…change of thought processes, body transformations, and sometimes more often than not….a different life outlook…good or bad it happens and it manifests itself in quite a few of us, including me whose hit that tender age.

In mid-life the man wants to see how irresistible he still is to younger women. How they turn their hearts to stone and more or less commit a murder of their marriage I just don’t know, but they do.
Earl Warren
I have read and seen many marriages crumble due to infidelity, secrets, selfishness, boredom etc. at around this age and a little older. Is it a growing pain or is it simply a lack of empathy for one’s spouse?  And grief comes about in a variety of forms. Could be regrets, making difficult life-changing decisions…sometimes wrong ones…death of a parent, relationship misconceptions, onset of abuse (physical, emotional)…..palatable loneliness and questioning your very existence
See, what you’re meant to do when you have a mid-life crisis is buy a fast car, aren’t you? Well, I’ve always had fast cars. It’s not that. It’s the fear that you’re past your best. It’s the fear that the stuff you’ve done in the past is your best work.
Robbie Coltraine

And it’s not just relationships that can crumble but also a dissatisfaction of the status quo, your job, the company you keep…many things.

 

I wouldn’t go back on my old days, though; everybody needs to have their wild years. It’s just a question of when and I’d rather have had them early than be doing it as a mid-life crisis type thing.
Rob Lowe
In the end try to live life to its fullest. We only have this one and let’s make the best of it.

A sense of abandonment

When denial (his or ours) can no longer hold and we finally have to admit to ourselves that we’ve been lied to, we search frantically for ways to keep it from disrupting our lives. So we rationalize. We find “good reasons” to justify his lying, just as he almost always accompanies his confessions with “good reasons” for his lies. He tells us he only lied because…. We tell ourselves he only lied because…. We make excuses for him: The lying wasn’t significant/Everybody lies/He’s only human/I have no right to judge him.

Allowing the lies to register in our consciousness means having to make room for any number of frightening possibilities:

• He’s not the man I thought he was.
• The relationship has spun out of control and I don’t know
what to do
• The relationship may be over.

Most women will do almost anything to avoid having to face these truths. Even if we yell and scream at him when we discover that he’s lied to us, once the dust settles, most of us will opt for the comforting territory of rationalization. In fact, many of us are willing to rewire our senses, short-circuit our instincts and intelligence, and accept the seductive comfort of self-delusion.”
Susan Forward, When Your Lover Is a Liar: Healing the Wounds of Deception and Betrayal

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How eloquently put….but let’s be fair….women are just as capable and find solicitous comfort within a deceitful world.

My question is…why do people do this?

Why do they feel it’s their God-given right to destroy a relationship, whether it be a marriage, a friendship, or at work…yes there are individuals out there who, for whatever reason, maybe they didn’t feel loved growing up, find it acceptable to deceive.

In all my years, especially during my active duty time, there are individuals who are missing an essential piece of their conscience.  They continue  the same pattern of behavior whether it be passive aggressive in nature or “in your face,” they do it because of some kind of narcissistic need for self-gratification.
Why do I bring this up????????
Because at the age of 45 I have seen far too many broken hearts, stressed out employees,  distraught friends, family members…the list goes on and on.
In the end we are the owners of our hearts, our dreams, our lives…and because of that you shouldn’t feel too sorry for yourself it you “allow” this destructive behavior to continue.
We control our own destinies, including those individuals and events we choose to keep in our lives….change is scary but possible.

What type of problem solver are you?

How do you all deal with problems? Do you confront them head on or do you let them fester like a gaping wound until you become so sick of the issue you finally explode?

What are your triggers and how do you handle work and relationship issues when serious problems arise?  Are you the type who will passive aggressively find ways to get back at your coworkers, at your partner, family??? Or do you confront said issues head on and deal with them right there and then. The following types may help you identify what category you fall under:

The 5 Types of Problem Solvers

1. The Blinker – This is the person who doesn’t even see that there is a problem, it is like they have horse blinkers on. They are too concerned with their own little world to even notice that there is something wrong.

2. The Avoider – This person actually sees the problem but avoids it. They couldn’t be bothered finding a solution.

3. The Identifier – Identifiers see the problem but instead of finding a solution themselves they find someone else to give the solution. In business, this would be the staff member who constantly goes to the supervisor rather than taking initiative to find the solution themselves.

4. The Changer – These are the problem solvers who identify a problem and implement a solution.

5. The Impacter – These problem solvers are experts at getting others to support their cause, and they excel at finding solutions to social or people problems that involve change. Impacters are great at getting people to “buy in”. The are great thinkers and innovative solutions finders but the key is that they involve others in the problem solving process. IMPACTERS CHANGE THE WORLD!!

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In the end, irregardless of the what kind of problem solver you are, it’s never healthy to let any issues linger because they either become bigger problems or can detrimentally affect your emotional and physical well-being creating a domino effect in other areas of your life.

Bullying in the workplace

What exactly is workplace bullying?  The Workplace Bullying Institute outlines it as follows:

Workplace Bullying is repeated, health-harming mistreatment of one or more persons (the targets) by one or more perpetrators that takes one or more of the following forms:

  • Verbal abuse
  • Offensive conduct/behaviors (including nonverbal) which are threatening, humiliating, or intimidating
  • Work interference — sabotage — which prevents work from getting done

Workplace Bullying…

  • Is driven by perpetrators’ need to control the targeted individual(s).
  • Is initiated by bullies who choose their targets, timing, location, and methods.
  • Requires consequences for the targeted individual
  • Escalates to involve others who side with the bully, either voluntarily or through coercion.
  • Undermines legitimate business interests when bullies’ personal agendas take precedence over work itself.
  • Is akin to domestic violence at work, where the abuser is on the payroll.

(Read more here)

We typically here about school confrontations and rarely anything outside of that. As adults we would think we were “grown up enough” to distinguished right from wrong.  However, come what may, you will have co-workers, supervisors, outside vendors, whomever…who feel using strong-armed tactics are the best way to generate results.

WRONG!
Unless you’re a new recruit struggling to get through Basic Training where “bullying” is suppose to build character, there’s NO place for it in the workplace.
bully1

Bullying and the workplace…

And here we all thought this kind of crap ended in high school.  Apparently not.

There are individuals who seem to thrive off of intimating others.  This creates a hostile work environment and I for one have little patience for such piss poor attitudes.

I have seen so much unprofessional behavior through my years it astounds me these individuals have lasted as long as they have.  The best thing when placed in such a situation is to simply ignore the individual…be the better person and if such behaviors continues then it’s time to alert that employee if they don’t stop then you will take it up with their supervisor. Simply no place for immature ignorance. At the end of the day it isn’t that serious. There are more pressing matters to attend to…….

Taken from the Workplace Bullying Institute:

Workplace Bullying is repeated, health-harming mistreatment of one or more persons (the targets) by one or more perpetrators that takes one or more of the following forms:

  • Verbal abuse
  • Offensive conduct/behaviors (including nonverbal) which are threatening, humiliating, or intimidating
  • Work interference — sabotage — which prevents work from getting done

Workplace Bullying…

 

  • Is driven by perpetrators’ need to control the targeted individual(s).
  • Is initiated by bullies who choose their targets, timing, location, and methods.
  • Escalates to involve others who side with the bully, either voluntarily or through coercion.
  • Undermines legitimate business interests when bullies’ personal agendas take precedence over work itself.
  • Is akin to domestic violence at work, where the abuser is on the payroll.

Read more about Bullying in comparison to Schoolyard Bullying, Workplace Violence and Incivility.

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There is no need to be a victim.  Stand up for yourself but do it in a way that it doesn’t jeopardize your job because then that bully wins.  Be tactful, keep your contact with this person short if you have to communicate and if they refuse to leave you alone then you should see your immediate supervisor.  Work is stressful enough without adding to the mix.

Blaming others

Success is having the courage, determination, & the will. Failure is making excuses why you didn’t succeed & blaming others around you because you didn’t

How many people do you personally know who blame others for their failures.

Or…are you one of them?

Yes, sometimes it’s warranted to blame someone else for lack of trying but at the same time, if this becomes well, a habit then whose fault really is it? If there is a blaming pattern going on and you feel that the whole world owes you something well, guess what….no one owes you a thing.

It’s up to you to create your own niche in the world. That responsibility lands squarely on your own 2 shoulders.

I have seen people at work, in relationships who have done the blame game. Who think it’s everyone’s fault but their own when the relationship has gone sour or they didn’t get the promotion at work.

The article  How To Stop the Blame Game at the workplace:

Playing the blame game never works. A deep set of research shows that people who blame others for their mistakes lose status, learn less, and perform worse relative to those who own up to their mistakes. Research also shows that the same applies for organizations. Groups and organizations with a rampant culture of blame have a serious disadvantage when it comes to creativity, learning, innovation, and productive risk-taking.

The article points out the following which, I feel, can be used in relationship issues (as long as the person doesn’t always rely on the other to solve all of their problems:

are a few practical steps you can take:

  • Don’t blame others for your mistakes. The temptation is huge to point the finger elsewhere when you make a mistake. Resist it. Not only will you gain respect and loyalty from your followers, you’ll also help to prevent a culture of blame from emerging.
  • When you do blame, do so constructively.There are times when people’s mistakes really do need to be surfaced in public. In these cases, make sure to highlight that the goal is to learn from mistakes, not to publicly humiliate those who make them.
  • Set an example by confidently taking ownership for failures.Our findings showed that blame was contagious, but not among those who felt psychologically secure. So try to foster a chronic sense of inner security in order to reduce the chances that you’ll lash out at others.
  • Always focus on learning. Creating a culture where learning — rather than avoiding mistakes — is the top priority will help to ensure that people feel free talk about and learn from their errors.
  • Reward people for making mistakes. Some companies are actually starting to incentivize employees to make mistakes, so long as the mistakes can teach valuable lessons that lead to future innovation.

Toastmasters

I have never been a fan of public speaking. Like many people it’s a phobia. I prefer one on one conversation however, if I wish to continue advancing this fear has to be conquored.  I thought about taking a public speaking class at the local community college but a good friend of mine suggested Toastmasters

According to their website when it comes to public speaking this organization [can give you]:

Confidence. The ability to communicate, persuade and lead. The skill to tell one’s story, shape better tomorrows and point others in the same direction. These are the attributes of leaders, and not all leaders are born with talent. They learn it, and so can you.

So, it seems joining is the best recourse for me. I need challange (thrive off of them) and because of my educational/career background it simply makes sense to join.

Am a person who believes in having a plan of action. Complaining gets you no where but more gray hairs. 

If you have a weakness, work on it. Don’t sit around stewing about the situation and nothing is being done. That’s when you simply become a  liability unto yourself and others. And who really wants to be that person?

What does it take to be a good leader?

Growing up I was known as the family wallflower. No desire to be noticed and preferred books over people. (Still do on occasion)

 

I was not a natural born leader. (Shakes head)

I believe the turning point came while stationed at Fort Jackson when I was assigned as an assistant squad leader. The recruits looked up to me for guidance and sometimes even as a personal counselor. My confidence began to blossom and I enjoyed the new role. At 18 I was promoted to Specialist Four (E-4) and was thrust into another leadership role in charge of individuals who were much older (and trust me they didn’t like it) but this also taught me patience and learned to even respect myself for my own leadership capabilities.  Though I was scared I learned to keep myself focused and simply mentally placed one foot in front of the other so that I could methodically plan out how to handle any given task at hand and to deal with “being in the spotlight.”

Most people I knew thought I wouldn’t even survive basic because of my shyness and I was labeled as being “delicate”.

Of course I proved them wrong.

Being a leader takes much out of you in terms of patience, knowledge, and overall commitment to the task and the people assigned to you. There are times I don’t want to be in this role then I think what the alternative would be…would I have remained that shy little wallflower fading into the background if I didn’t take a chance on myself?

I work on a team with my agency and been a part of this type of environment since I was 17.  A team reminds me of the game of chess….all the pieces need to work together to achieve the ultimate goal of winning the game (or mission) and without a good King (well, for me Queen) :) we end up losing if we don’t try to cooperate in a collective manner.

A good leader (at least to me) is compassionate, cooperative and will take the time to motivate their team to accomplish whatever mission task is at hand.  If you are thrust into a leadership position don’t let it scare you….look inside of yourself and check out what your strengths are. Don’t discount what you are able to contribute to the team, your company….