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You Should Probably Shut Up At These Critical Times

You Should Probably Shut Up At These Critical Times

Talking can help you connect with others, but it can also destroy relationships. Here are some critical times when you should shut your mouth—before you put your foot in it.

1. When you don’t know who is around you.

No matter who or what you’re talking about, always be careful of who else is around. You may want to complain about a recent project, or simply talk about a family issue, but if you don’t know who is listening, you could say something offensive or inconsiderate.

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2. When you’re surrounded by gossip.

Gossipers love to pull other people into their webs. Don’t let this happen to you. If you gossip with a gossiper, whatever you say can and will be held against you—plus, you’ll probably be the next person gossiped about.

3. When someone asks about your love life.

It’s best to keep details of your love life private, especially if you are spreading negative information about your significant other. It will only harm your relationship, and if he or she finds out you’ve been talking about them, it could end the relationship forever.

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4. When someone is telling only you useful information.

You rarely get the opportunity to get ahead, so next time someone starts sharing useful information with you—and only you—stop talking! Listen to what they have to say, and start thinking how you can use the information to improve your job performance.

5. When the door is open.

It looks bad to talk behind closed doors, but talking out in the open can also lead to problems. Anytime a door is open, always picture the people standing in the hallway—just out of your sight but still in earshot. If you are comfortable talking with the door open, you better be comfortable with all your co-workers knowing what you’re talking about.

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6. When someone is telling you a secret.

This is a crucial moment for you to stop talking. A secret means someone wants to confide in you, so if you jump in and start talking, the other person will think you don’t value the relationship. Instead, just be quiet and appreciate their confidence in making you their confidante.

7. When you are about to say something negative.

No one wants to hear your negativity. So, it’s time to shut up unless you have a valid concern about someone’s safety. If you’re just spewing problems and negativity, no one will take you seriously anyway. Everyone will just dismiss you and think you are too lazy to help.

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8. When you’re about to lie.

Lying never really works. When you get caught you will ruin the trust you’ve built. Next time you’re tempted to lie, just don’t say anything.

9. When you’re about to make an excuse.

People who make excuses all the time are annoying. Next time someone asks you to help with a project, just focus on what you need from them to get started. This way, you will be proactive, and you will enlist them to help you get started.

10. When you want to “one-up” someone.

“One uppers” are people who always have to beat what the other person is saying. For example, if someone tells you they ran two miles, a one upper would say, “Really? I ran five.” If you’re really passionate about an activity, it’s natural to want to “one-up” someone, but hold back. It only makes you look desperate.

Next time you want to speak up, make sure what you’re saying will be a positive influence on the conversation and the person you’re speaking to. Learning when to speak and when to shut up is one of the fastest ways you can develop trust within your organization.

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Kelsie Fannon

Kelsie is a journalist and writer who shares about productivity and money tips on Lifehack.

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

How to Motivate People Around You and Inspire Them

How to Motivate People Around You and Inspire Them

If I was a super hero I’d want my super power to be the ability to motivate everyone around me. Think of how many problems you could solve just by being able to motivate people towards their goals. You wouldn’t be frustrated by lazy co-workers. You wouldn’t be mad at your partner for wasting the weekend in front of the TV. Also, the more people around you are motivated toward their dreams, the more you can capitalize off their successes.

Being able to motivate people is key to your success at work, at home, and in the future because no one can achieve anything alone. We all need the help of others.

So, how to motivate people? Here are 7 ways to motivate others even you can do.

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1. Listen

Most people start out trying to motivate someone by giving them a lengthy speech, but this rarely works because motivation has to start inside others. The best way to motivate others is to start by listening to what they want to do. Find out what the person’s goals and dreams are. If it’s something you want to encourage, then continue through these steps.

2. Ask Open-Ended Questions

Open-ended questions are the best way to figure out what someone’s dreams are. If you can’t think of anything to ask, start with, “What have you always wanted to do?”

“Why do you want to do that?”

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“What makes you so excited about it?”

“How long has that been your dream?”

You need this information the help you with the following steps.

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3. Encourage

This is the most important step, because starting a dream is scary. People are so scared they will fail or look stupid, many never try to reach their goals, so this is where you come in. You must encourage them. Say things like, “I think you will be great at that.” Better yet, say, “I think your skills in X will help you succeed.” For example if you have a friend who wants to own a pet store, say, “You are so great with animals, I think you will be excellent at running a pet store.”

4. Ask About What the First Step Will Be

After you’ve encouraged them, find how they will start. If they don’t know, you can make suggestions, but it’s better to let the person figure out the first step themselves so they can be committed to the process.

5. Dream

This is the most fun step, because you can dream about success. Say things like, “Wouldn’t it be cool if your business took off, and you didn’t have to work at that job you hate?” By allowing others to dream, you solidify the motivation in place and connect their dreams to a future reality.

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6. Ask How You Can Help

Most of the time, others won’t need anything from you, but it’s always good to offer. Just letting the person know you’re there will help motivate them to start. And, who knows, maybe your skills can help.

7. Follow Up

Periodically, over the course of the next year, ask them how their goal is going. This way you can find out what progress has been made. You may need to do the seven steps again, or they may need motivation in another area of their life.

Final Thoughts

By following these seven steps, you’ll be able to encourage the people around you to achieve their dreams and goals. In return, you’ll be more passionate about getting to your goals, you’ll be surrounded by successful people, and others will want to help you reach your dreams …

Oh, and you’ll become a motivational super hero. Time to get a cape!

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Featured photo credit: Thought Catalog via unsplash.com

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