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6 Things I Am Too Old For (But That Means I’ve Matured)

6 Things I Am Too Old For (But That Means I’ve Matured)

Getting older is tough. You’re not as energetic and vibrant as you used to be. Your health deteriorates, and sometimes you may even lose your precious hair. But there is another important aspect of aging, and it is that you don’t find time or patience for the things you have done as a younger person, things that you are too old for. Now, it doesn’t necessarily have to be a bad thing. In fact, it can actually be looked at as a good virtue–it means that you have matured.

If you’re experiencing this feeling, rejoice and take pride in it, maturity the result a full life’s learning. It is wisdom. Here are six things that you may feel too old for, but it just means that you’ve matured.

1. Keeping What You Want To Express In Heart

Older, more mature people, simply do not find the patience to bottle up their thoughts when they sense that something was done wrong, or unjustly. Either to them, or to other people around them. Younger people, fearful of stepping out of line of their peers, do not always do the same, unless it is widely acceptable for them to shout out. Yet, older, mature people, do not care for their popularity scale.

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When something is wrong, it needs fixing, plain and simple, even if it means that you’ll have to face some social inconvenience.

2. Worrying How Others Perceive You

If there’s anything that is associated to young people, is the strive to make good impression on others, the need to fit in. You simply cannot act as you’d wish to, always keeping yourself concerned about “what will others think of me?”

This is where growing up and becoming mature shows its virtue. As you grow, you realize that whatever others might think of you, will not really change your everyday life. Especially if those involved are actually complete strangers. It finally befalls on you that walking around down the streets with a stained shirt will not make much of an impact on your life, and most definitely should not shape your everyday behavior.

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One important aspect of being mature is being able to differentiate the crucial from the ridiculous. And to be completely honest, you really don’t have anymore patience to change shirts over a small stain after all of these years.

3. Making Excuses For Your Mistakes

As a young person, every mistake you make seems like the end, and your world swirls and turning upside down the more you think of it. If it was bringing a friend over and finding out that you have unclean laundry dropped down on the floor, or if you loaned something from a friend and you realized that it simply slipped out of your mind to bring it back to him the next time you met. Mistakes, for young people, are devastating. Therefore, they will always find excuses to make up for them, not much for others, but more for themselves, so they’ll be able to sleep peacefully at night.

As you get older, and more mature, you realize that mistakes are simply mistakes. No reason to beat yourself down for them, and no reason to justify them for other. You are human, and you make mistakes, just like everyone. You will try to do better next time, but even if you will not, it’s not like you have done it on purpose.

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4. Spending Time On Anything That Is Not Worth It

It can be a person, an animal, or a thing. It doesn’t really matter. Unlike young people, who are obsessed with enlarging their social circle, and with having many things, older and mature people perceive these things as suitable use of their time. When you keep in touch with people you don’t care for only to increase your number of Facebook friends, or when you accumulate possessions as a result of a constant fear that you might “need them one day”, you are actually throwing away that precious little time you have in this world.

Older, more mature people understand this problem, and so they do not bother with people they don’t care about, and possessions they have no sentiment or need for.

5. Guilty Pleasure

Why does the phrase “guilty pleasure” even exists? Why do we need to feel guilty for whatever it is that give us pleasure? Truth is, that it should not, and mature people understand this best. Guilty pleasure comes from the fear of younger people from being percieved as “different” or even “weird”, forgetting that whatever we like best make us special and unique.

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Older and mature people couldn’t care less of what other people might think of their own personal pleasures, and quite frankly, there’s really no reason for them to start.

6. Looking For The Good In Every Person You Know

Well, it’s not like mature people don’t want to look for it, it’s just that they do not care for trying too hard by now. They go by their guts, and take a calculated assumption on whether they’d get along with the other person or not. Young people, on the other hand, are compelled to getting along with different people as part of their never ending social life.

Older people care more dearly about their time, and on whoever they might invest it upon. They don’t want to dig into another person’s life in order to find a shining good in it, they simply have neither the patience, nor the time.

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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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