You might wonder why I have a clip from a 70’s show called “That Girl.” Here’s why – I loved it. I was home sick for a year with mononucleosis and a series of other weird ailments, and at the age of 9 I LIVED for this show. When I found the theme song on You Tube, I was transported to a time when I dreamed of being Ann Marie, actress, living in New York City, making it on my own. What’s weird is that as soon as this You Tube clip began to play, I found myself sitting at my desk, forty years later, smiling and feeling hopeful. Why? Because this show and Marlo Thomas’s character made me happy, and the positive dreams of a nine year old are associated with that song.
So, what does this have to do with you? Think about it. Once you’ve interacted with a client or colleague or family member, what do they associate with you? Are you caustic? Negative? Whiney? Focused on yourself? OR, do they know that time spent with you means laughter, the discussion of possibilities, engaging conversations, and a true interest in them and their lives? Everyone influences others no matter what their position – the question is, are you selling positive association or negative association? Do people want to interact with you again?
I listened to a sales person that walked through my business doors the other day for five of the longest minutes of my life. I wanted to back slowly into my office and shut the door, with hopes he wouldn’t notice (he was so self-absorbed I might have been able to pull it off). He started with “My company will be really mad at me if I don’t at least tell them that I talked to you. . .do you have water? It’s so hot outside and I have to wear this suit. . .” I actually saw this same guy in CVS a week later and almost knocked over a display trying to avoid direct eye contact.
Have you ever experienced that manager that has meetings only to lament about how tough their job is? Or talk about their ailments or personal problems? Come on people!! If you want others to think of you for the next promotion or even the next party, be someone others want to talk to. Laugh, be interested more than interesting, and don’t talk about your woes all the time. Be an exhilarator, not an albatross. Don’t hang your worries around people’s necks dragging them down into despair. Instead, have them walk away from you lighter with their heads held high, believing in themselves and the world around them.
Who do you want to be – the depressing guy, or “THAT GUY!”?. . .the morose girl, or “THAT GIRL!”? Energizing the world starts with the belief that you can energize others. You can, and you do. Whether you’re a positive or negative charge is up to you. And here’s a nice side effect – the harder you work to make others feel good, the better you’ll feel yourself. Sounds corny, but it’s true. Now, back to my theme song.