Thursday, 22 December 2011

10 Tips for a Confident Christmas


 Tips for
For lots of us, Christmas is one the most stressful times in the year.  So here are some tips tolighten the load a little and to help you have at less troubled Christmas!
  1. Be realistic – Christmas represents a couple of days in 365. Don’t expect everything to change just for this.  If you have friends and family that don’t get on well for most the year, then don’t expect Christmas to be different.  Things can go wrong any day – please don’t take it to heart!  If your Christmas is less than perfect you have not failed and you should not feel guilty.  You are having a Christmas just like the rest
    of us!
  2. Write a timetable - If you are responsible for managing the day or for cooking then write a time table – for example, 10 am – put turkey in oven.  Try to keep both the day and the cooking simple, if you can, and delegate some of the tasks.  If you have a family party, can you have a buffet lunch and ask people to bring a platter?
  3. Avoid touchy triggers - If you are unlucky enough to have people who you know don’t get on, do your best to avoid the known triggers. For example, if religion is a touchy subject, then use distraction and move the conversation on.  Perhaps you
    can get one of the parties to come and help you in the kitchen or to help with
    activities. 
  4. Plan some activities - After lunch have an activity planned so that people are occupied and don’t have time to bicker. Activities are also useful for slowing down the alcohol consumption. 
  5. Practice moderation - Even though it is the season to be jolly, too much food and drink is not good for anyone. If you have visitors who are known to drink too much, think beforehand how you are going to get them home – drink driving is always
    dangerous but more so at Christmas time.
  6. Have spare presents - Present giving can always be tricky. Try to have a couple of spare presents ready in case you receive unexpected visitors or gifts.  Try to
    avoid anyone feeling left out if you can.
  7. Exercise for energy - If you have a regular exercise routine then try to keep it up even on this special day.  It will give energy and stamina for the day.
  8. Have a quiet place!  Plan to have ten minutes on your own in a quiet place at some point.  Go there and use a relaxation technique like deep breathing or focussing on your breath to help you relax and make the most of your break. It helps as well if you can to have a quiet place for others to retire as well if you have a lot of guests.
  9. Make time to reminisce. Have a special thought for older members of the family who find their own Christmas memories a little overwhelming.  Take some time for them to share reminiscences with you.
  10. Look after you - whether you are going to be alone this Christmas or with others, then plan something special just for you – your favorite food, or your favourite film
    perhaps?  What do you like best? Remember- all over the world there will be others just like you – enjoying this day or just waiting for tomorrow to come! Right now it is time for spoiling yourself – enjoy your indulgence!
And now I wish you the happiest of Seasons and may 2012 be the most wonderful of years for you and yours!


Wendy Mason works as a Coach, Consultant and Writer.  She works with all kinds of people going through many different kinds of personal and career change, particularly those; 
  • looking for work
  • looking for promotion or newly promoted
  • moving between Public and Private Sectors
  • facing redundancy
  • moving into retirement
  • wanting to do a mid-life review
You can contact Wendy at wendymason@wisewolfconsulting.com  or ring ++44 (0)2084610114 

Friday, 16 December 2011

What is confidence?

Confidence  
We talk a lot about it – but what does it actually mean?  

If you are aware of your own and other people's behavior, then you have most of the essential building blocks for confidence.  But first, let us consider confidence a little further!

What is confidence?
The word “confidence” comes from Latin and it meant to put your faith in someone.  

Well, that is a good place to start. Really, to have confidence is to have faith in yourself and your own abilities!    But knowing that doesn’t tell you enough and it certainly doesn’t tell you how to get it.

So let us look for some clues - how do we spot confident people! 

Spotting confident people!
  • Look out for people who;
  • Believe in themselves and feel at ease taking action. 
  • Speak calmly and listen properly.
  • Act assertively but never aggressively.
  • Are flexible, ready to accommodate new information and make changes in response to it.
  • Praise others sincerely and can take constructive criticism without reacting negatively.
  • Know who they are, appreciate their achievements but can recognise and accept their own faults.
  • Learn from their mistakes.
  • Are not run by 'should', 'must' and 'ought to’; they feel they have influence over what happens to them and those about them.
  • Greet an opportunity with 'Why not?' rather than 'Why? Or a ‘Not right now!'

Where does confidence come from?
Well, psychologist Gary Fitzgibbons says “Confidence is within all of us, but whether it shines through or remains hidden can depend on how we are treated as children and young adults." It's not for nothing that people say 'show me the girl at seven and I'll show you the woman'.

But if you were not one of those lucky people endowed with confidence by your circumstances, you can change.  That change is the reason this website has been set up! Over the next few months you are going to find lots of posts, pages and other resources here to help you.   


Wendy Mason knows about confidence.  She works with all kinds of people going through many different kinds of personal and career change and those who just want to increase their confidence. 
You can contact Wendy at wendymason@wisewolfcoaching.com  or ring ++44 (0)2084610114. She offers coaching by phone and Skype as well as Face to Face.

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Giving criticism confidently – 10 Tips

Red smoke 
Sometimes even in the best relationship, there comes a times when we want to say something critical.  Not everything can be perfect every time!  Sometimes things go wrong.  And sometimes, in your view, it is down to the other person.  You think it is something they can do something about.  So
you want to tell them. 


Here are some pointers to giving criticism but proceed with care. And remember, how you sound,  look and behave when you give the feedback often matters as much weight as the words you use.  But the words are important.  
Here are the tips.
  1. Be sure of the facts!  Try to find out exactly what went wrong and why. 
  2. Be constructive! It should be about getting things right in the future not about trying to punish. 
  3. Be direct! Get to the point and give the feedback in a simple, straight forward
    way.
  4. Be clear! Set out what you are criticizing, the change you want to see and why.  Comment on behaviour not the person. If you want to change the person this is more than a case of giving criticism.
  5. Be sincere! Say what you mean and mean what you say Sincerity means you speak with care and respect. Don’t send a mixed message – for example “I think you are all
    wonderful but there is just this little thing I’d like to mention”.  This usually means the real purpose of the message gets lost. Putting the “but” in the middle just creates contradictions
  6. Be serious! Express concern but do not become emotional.  Getting angry and showing frustration will distort the messages.  Again remember you are trying to create awareness not to create noise, vent and make yourself feel better.   
  7. Be objective! State what you have observed and the evidence you have gathered.  Don’t try to interpret or to attribute motives – nothing can be more infuriating to the other person. 
  8. Be live! Criticism is best handled directly person to person; not through someone
    else or through technology – for example an email.
  9. Be on time! Don’t do this when you are angry if you want a good result.
    Giving criticism is best not confused with venting.  Speak close as possible to the event or the 
    behavior.  When everything is fresh in both your minds, your comments will have far greater impact than further down the line when you may have forgotten exactly what happened.
  10. Be kind! Do not choose a moment when you know the other person is feeling tired
    or hurt by some other life event.  And do listen when the other person responds – there may be something you just have not taken into account.
Those are my 10 tips for giving criticism.  Do you agree?  Send me your thoughts and observations by commenting below.
Related articles
Wendy Mason works as a Coach, Consultant and Writer. 

She works with all kinds of people going through many different kinds of personal and career change, particularly those;

  • looking for work
  • looking for promotion or newly promoted
  • moving between Public and Private Sectors
  • facing redundancy
  • moving into retirement
  • wanting to do a mid-life review
You can contact Wendy at wendymason@wisewolfconsulting.com  or ring ++44 (0)2084610114 


Wednesday, 7 December 2011

7 Quick Tips For Confident Dating

miss mimi and miss patsyImage by K9 Playgroups via Flickr
  1. Be happy. People like happy people. Particularly, on a first date, try to show your happy side!  Do not arrive angry or in a bad mood about something that happened earlier, nothing is more off putting. Arrive looking as if you expect to enjoy yourself and you are pleased to be with your Date.
  2. Flatter each other. People enjoy compliments.  But be sincere – if you can’t find something to like then why are you there? So tell him or her you like the shirt or the way they have done their hair.  And accept a compliment gracefully – say thank you and don’t brush it off.   Compliments will make you both focus on the positive and it always feels good to make someone else feel good.
  3. Dates are not agony aunts. Friends were made for listening but not Dates. You can ask the other person for advice, but please don’t pour your heart out.  This applies particularly to stories about previous lost loves. 
  4. Don’t take it personally.  People get nervous on dates.  Sometimes they say things they later regret.  Allow for this and don’t take anything on a first date too seriously.
  5. Know when to drop it. If your date changes the subject when you try talking about a particular subject, take the hint! This applies particularly if you are talking about something personal or looking for reassurance. Don’t feel hurt they are just not ready to deal with that yet, so move on.  
  6. Listen attentively but come to talk.  People like to be listened to, so give your date space to talk to you. Don’t interrupt and listen and show interest.  But think about things to talk about (music, films, books) before you arrive.  People like you to ask them questions but don’t ask anything too personal to early on!  
  7. Smile. People like people who smile – so smile often.  Show how pleased you are to be there!



Wendy Mason works as a Coach, Consultant and Writer. 


You can contact Wendy at wendymason@wisewolfconsulting.com  or ring ++44 (0)2084610114


She works with all kinds of people going through many different kinds of personal and career change, particularly those;
  • looking for work
  • looking for promotion or newly promoted
  • moving between Public and Private Sectors
  • facing redundancy
  • moving into retirement
  • wanting to do a mid-life review

Monday, 5 December 2011

Confidence - five magic tips



  1. Find  a model - someone who is doing what you want and is confident.  Now copy them!  How do they behave?  What do they say?  Talk to them if you can and find out as much as you can about them.  Now try behaving and speaking in the same way.  Go on try it!  You’ll be surprised! 
  2. Predict the worst? Imagine the worst thing that can happen.  Now how likely is it - really? Often it isn’t half as bad as you expect.  Isn’t it worth taking the risk?  Do what you can to minimise the risks – then go for it! 
  3. Make a home movie.  Here you imagine you have already something for the first time and you did it really well. Close your eyes.  Make it really vivid and imagine you are succeeding. You are doing it brilliantly.  Now it isn’t the first time anymore is it?
  4. Act as if!  If you were confident, how would you be acting? How would you be moving? How would you be speaking? What would you be thinking? What would you tell yourself inside? Now act it till it isn’t acting anymore!  Act till it is a habit!
  5. Develop an off switch.  Switch off that nagging, negative internal voice.  Imagine a volume control and lower the volume. Or change the voice to a squeaky mouse.  Now you can’t take it seriously anymore!  Laugh out loud and move forward 
Wendy Mason works as a Coach, Consultant and Writer. 
You can contact Wendy at wendymason@wisewolfconsulting.com  or ring ++44 (0)2084610114
She works with all kinds of people going through many different kinds of personal and career change, particularly those;

  • looking for work
  • looking for promotion or newly promoted
  • moving between Public and Private Sectors
  • facing redundancy
  • moving into retirement
  • wanting to do a mid-life review
Related articles



    Friday, 2 December 2011

    12 Tips for Confident Interviews











    So many people I know and work with are going for job interviews.  I thought it would be useful to record some tips for approaching them with confidence.  


    There lots of interview tips around but I think these are some of the best!


    1.            Know the organization. Do your home work - find out as much as you can about the role, the organization, its needs and its challenges.  Find out what is going on in their sector.  How can your experience and knowledge give them an advantage? Look at their website and see what people are saying about them on the internet.  Research the company at your local library. If they are in the private sector who are their competitors?  Who are their customers? Go to the interview armed with knowledge of the organization you hope to join.

    2.            Know what you bring! Review your skills and knowledge and be prepared with examples of how you have used them.  What kind of person are you?  How will you bring value?

    3.            Know your CV/resume. Review your past achievements and be prepared to describe them in answer to questions.  Prepare and remember examples of your achievements.  Practice describing them.

    4.            Know one of the first questions. You can almost bet on being asked: "Tell me about yourself”.  So have your “elevator pitch" ready. This is a short paragraph or two that describes who you are and what you can contribute.  Give it punch - make it interesting, informative, and memorable.  Practice delivering it at home with confidence and don’t rush. Approach it from the employer's point of view. Ask yourself, "If I were hiring someone for this position, what would I want to know?"

    5.            Be prepared for follow up questions. Be ready for some tough questions about you experience and abilities. Think through what they might ask and then prepare positive responses.

    6.            Prepare questions of your own. Employers expect you to be interested in them and to ask some questions about the organization.  Prepare some intelligent questions about the position, the company and the industry. Ask about the issues they are dealing with!  

    7.            Visualize!  Imagine the entire interview, from start to finish. See yourself as performing with style and confidence. How will the interview end? Will you get a job offer or be called back for a second interview? How much salary do you want? What kind of benefits? Use your research and practice, practice, practice.  See yourself successful!

    8.            Be punctual - arrive at least few minutes early. Allow extra time for traffic, parking and slow elevators. Then take a few moments out in the bathroom to check your appearance and to take some deep breaths.

    9.            Dress for success and appropriate for the position you're seeking and the organization.  Find out about dress code when you do your research.  Be clean and tidy with well ironed clothes and well polished shoes.

    10.         Body Language and handshake. Stand straight! Move confidently and have a firm handshake. It does wonders for your confidence and theirs – again practice, practice, and practice! Make eye contact when you shake. Sit slightly forward in your chair and show you are enthusiastic and interested.  But don’t gush and remember to smile.

    11.         Communication and listening skills. Listen carefully!  Ask questions if there is anything you do not understand and to show interest. Communicate clearly and stay positive. Never, never make negative statements about previous jobs or employers-be diplomatic!  

    12.         Write back! Send a thank-you note to the company recruiter after the interview.  Ask for feedback if you are unsuccessful – remember to ask them to keep you in mind for future openings.
      
    Wendy Mason works as a Coach, Consultant and Writer. 

    She works with all kinds of people going through many different kinds of personal and career change, particularly those;



    • looking for work
    • looking for promotion or newly promoted
    • moving between Public and Private Sectors
    • facing redundancy
    • moving into retirement
    • wanting to do a mid-life review
    You can contact Wendy at wendymason@wisewolfconsulting.com  or ring ++44 (0)2084610114Related articles