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7 Signs You Were A Spirited Child And That’s Really Great

7 Signs You Were A Spirited Child And That’s Really Great

Spirited children are wonderful. It’s like a gift. Strength, independence and an understanding of the world around you.

Were you a spirited child? If so, it has likely enhanced many areas of your adult life in ways you probably don’t even realize. Creativity, passion and imagination are mere examples of the potential unlocked by your spirited lifestyle. Teachers may have been annoyed at your wandering mind, parents could have been frustrated at your constant questioning, and friends may have shrugged at your suggestions. But with curiosity and energy comes intelligence.

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Here are 7 signs that prove you were a spirited child:

You were busy exploring all the time

A spirited child doesn’t just sit on his or her hands. They explore the environments available to them; looking under rocks for new insects, searching the new house in its entirety, swimming to the bottom of the lake, breaking away from the excursion group to see what’s behind the ‘do not pass’ sign. Limitations bore a spirited child. Exploration unravels secrets, opens up new possibilities and allows you to become reliant on yourself rather than others.

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You don’t conform easily, you would debate a lot

Some children believe everything they hear…but not you. Curiosity sparked questioning, which in turn built learning and intelligence. If a statement sounds untrue to you, you’ll debate it with all the relevant points you can think of. Challenging others and believing in your own views makes you an individual. And if there’s a group building? You don’t just conform and fall in line. You question them; why should I join you? What do you stand for? What are the alternatives?

You could be easily distracted

Sitting in class, seeing that spider try to squeeze through the window while your maths teacher rabbles on about algebra. The outside world offered so much more than the blackboard, so distractions as a child were a constant. A spirited child grows bored with repetition, seeking something new to analyze. This has stemmed into your profession as an adult. There’s no way you’ll be someone like an accountant, because you need more stimulation than that. Creative fields such as the arts allowed you to make your own fun, and removed the ease of distraction. But listening and watching other people tell you what to do didn’t resonate.

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You had unlimited energy

Who needs 8 hours sleep when there’s so much to do and see? Red Bull and coffee wasn’t needed to run around the house at top speed, pretending to be your favorite animal. Sugar hits weren’t necessary to play in the backyard all day with your pets. Having unlimited energy meant you didn’t miss an opportunity; you were never ‘too tired’ to take an adventure. And when you look back now, you can only dream of that energy, and how amazing it was to have those natural levels.

You were very rich in emotions and cry quite a lot

Emotions can be sold as a negative during childhood, but an early understanding of emotions benefits your progression into an adult. It builds empathy, it creates a base of knowledge on how to react in certain situations and it helps you deal with the problems in your life. A movie, or a song, or a book may have reduced you to tears, because of the characters feeling more real than the people around you. Anger, fear, sadness; they are all elements of the spirit, and you felt them greatly in your stages of growth. But having that background, and with more control, you’re a stronger person because of it.

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You could be easily stimulated by the environment

Video games were great, but the great outdoors inspired you more than a flashing screen. Fresh air fueled your adventures. Fresh green leaves, bright blue water in the ocean, the sounds of waves crashing against the rocks; these were the greatest stimulants in your childhood. People remained in the periphery, when the facts of nature were involved. Animals, plant life, the smells of the wild: all these factors were boosts to the energy levels, especially if the majority of your time was confined to a big city.

You were eager to try new things and do things yourself

Reliance is overrated. Your independence grew from trying new things yourself. Dive right in and see what the consequences were. You didn’t need a teacher to hold your hand, or a parent to watch you; often, it was even better without a friend over your shoulder. Spirited children test their limits and boundaries from a young age, so by the time they reach the teenage years (and adult life) they have a greater understanding of themselves. They walk tall in any situation, reliant on their own abilities.

If you were a spirited child, these 7 signs will resonate. They are the greater positives of being a kid, and they involved fantastic attributes that continue to be a part of your make-up today. Think back to all those memories, and know your life was more full due to your renegade lifestyle.

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Last Updated on April 11, 2019

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

Possessing strong communication skills will help you in every phase of your life. This is especially true in the workplace.

I have personally worked with several leaders who were masters of communication. A few were wonderful speakers who could tell a great story and get everyone in the room engaged. Those of us in attendance would walk away feeling inspired and eager to help with what came next. Others were very skilled at sharing a clear direction and job expectations.

I knew exactly what was expected of me and how to achieve my goals. This was the foundation of an energized and vibrant role I was in. What I have found is strong communication skills are incredibly helpful and sometimes critical in how well we perform at work.

Here we will take a look at how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

How Communication Skills Help Your Success

Strong communication skills pave the way for success in many ways. Let’s look at a few of the big ones.

Create a Positive Experience

Here are two examples of how well developed communication skills helps create a positive experience:

When I first moved to the city I now live in, I began a job search. Prior to my first live interview, I was told an address to go to. Upon arriving at the address provided, I drove around and around attempting to find the location. After 15 minutes of circling and looking for the address, I finally grabbed a parking spot and set out on foot.

What I discovered was the address was actually down an alley and only had the number over the door. No sign for the actual company. The person that gave me those very unclear directions provided a bad experience for me.

Had they communicated the directions to get there in a clear manner, my experience would have been much better. Instead the entire experience started off poorly and colored the entire meeting.

As a recruiter, I frequently provide potential candidates with information about a job I’m speaking to them about. In order to do this, I also provide a picture of the overall company, the group they might be joining, and how their role fits in and impacts the entire company.

Time and time again I have been told by candidates that I have provided the clearest picture of a company and role they have ever heard. They have a positive experience when I clearly communicate to them. Even when the position does not work out for them, often times they will want to stay in touch with me due to the open communication and beneficial experience they had during the interviewing process.

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Strong communication skills will provide a positive experience in virtually any interaction you have with someone.

Help Leadership Skills

It’s certainly a skill all its own to be able to lead others.

Being a mentor and guiding others towards success is a major hallmark of great leaders. Another characteristic of effective leaders is the ability to communicate clearly.

As I referenced above, having a leader who can plainly articulate the company’s mission and direction goes a really long way towards being the Captain of the boat that others want to follow. It’s like saying “here’s our destination and this is how we are going to get there” in a way that everyone can get on board with.

Another critical component of everyone helping to sail the boat in the right direction is knowing what your portion is all about. How are you helping the boat move towards its destination in the manner than is consistent with the leaders’ vision?

If you have a boss or a manager that can show you what it takes for not only you to be successful, but also how your performance helps the company’s success then you’ve got a winner. A boss with superior communication skills.

Build Better Teams

Most of us work in teams of some sort or another. During the course of my career, I have led teams up to 80 and also been an individual contributor.

In my individual contributor roles, I have been part of a larger team. Even if you are in business for yourself, you have to interact with others in one manner or another.

If you have strong communication skills, it helps to build better teams. This is true whether you are in an IT department with 100 other fellow programmers or if you own your own business and have customers or vendors you communicate with.

When you showcase your robust ability to communicate well with others while interacting with them, you are building a better team.

Now let’s jump in to how to improve communication skills to help you pave the way for your workplace success.

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How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

There are many tips, tricks, and techniques to improve communication skills. I don’t want to overwhelm you with too much information, so let’s focus on the things that will provide the biggest return on your time investment.

Most of these tips will be fairly easy to become aware of but will take time and effort to implement. So let’s go!

1. Listen

Ever heard the saying you have two ears and one mouth for a reason? If you haven’t, then here’s the reason:

Being a good listener is half the equation to being a good communicator.

People who have the ability to really listen to someone can then actually answer questions in a meaningful way. If you don’t make the effort to actively listen, then you are really doing yourself and the other person a disservice in the communication department.

Know that person who is chomping at the bit to open his or her mouth the second you stop talking? Don’t be that person. They haven’t listened to at least 1/2 of what you’ve said. Therefore the words that spill out of their mouth are going to be about 1/2 relevant to what you just said.

Listen to someone completely and be comfortable with short periods of silence. Work on your listening skills first and foremost.

2. Know Your Audience

Knowing your audience is another critical component to having strong communication skills. The way you interact with your manager should be different than how you interact with your kids. This isn’t to say you need to be a different person with everyone you interact with. Far from it.

Here is a good way to think about it:

Imagine using your the same choice of words and body language you use with your spouse while interacting with your boss. That puts things in a graphic light!

You want to ensure you are using the type of communication most relevant to your audience.

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3. Minimize

I have lunch with a business associate about 3 times a year. We’ve been talking for several years now about putting a business deal together.

He is one of those people that simply overwhelms others with a lot of words. Sometimes when I ask him a question, I get buried beneath such an avalanche of words that I’m more confused than when I asked the question. Needless to say this is most likely a large portion of why we never put the deal together.

Don’t be like my lunch business associate. The goal of talking to or communicating with someone is to share actual information. The goal is not to confuse someone, it’s to provide clarity in many cases.

State what needs to be stated as succinctly as possible. That doesn’t mean you can’t have some pleasant conversation about the weather too.

The point is to not create such an onslaught of words and information that the other person walks away more confused than when they started.

4. Over Communicate

So this probably sounds completely counter intuitive to what I just wrote about minimizing your communication. It seems like it might be but it’s not.

What I mean by over communicating is ensuring that the other person understands the important parts of what you are sharing with them. This can be done simply yet effectively. Here’s a good example:

Most companies have open enrollment for benefits for the employees in the fall. The company I work for has open enrollment from November 1 to 15. The benefits department will send out a communication to all employees around October 1st, letting them know open enrollment is right around the corner and any major changes that year. There’s also a phone number and email for people to contact them with any questions.

Two weeks later, we all get a follow up email with basically the same information. We get a 3rd communication the week before open enrollment and another one 1 day before it starts.

Finally we get 2 emails during enrollment reminding us when open enrollment ends.

There’s minimal information, it’s more of a reminder. This is effective over communication.

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5. Body Language

The final critical component to how to improve communication skills for workplace success is body language. This is something most of us have heard about before but, a reminder is probably a good idea.

When I am in a meeting with someone I am comfortable with, I tend to kind of slouch down in my chair and cross my arms. When I catch myself doing this, I sit up straight and uncross my arms. I remember that crossing arms can many times be interpreted as a sign of disagreement or conflict.

In general, the best rule of thumb is to work towards having open body language whenever possible at work. This means relaxing your posture, not crossing your arms, and looking people in the eye when speaking with them.

When you are speaking in front of others, stand up straight and speak in a clear voice. This will convey confidence in your words.

Conclusion

Possessing strong communication skills will help you in many facets of your life and most certainly in the workplace.

Good communication helps create better teams, positive experiences with those we interact with, and are critical for leadership.

There are numerous tactics and techniques to be used to improve communication skills. Here we’ve reviewed how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

Now go communicate your way to success.

More Resources About Effective Communication

Featured photo credit: HIVAN ARVIZU via unsplash.com

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