Change Your Words Change Your WorldKathleen Byars | September 24, 2016
This past week I was interviewed for a podcast and also for a blog. The interviewers asked excellent questions that made me think.
One of the interviewers asked, “What is one thing that no one ever says to you?”
It took me awhile to answer. And then it occurred to me. Rarely does anyone say,
“What can I do to help?”
We are all familiar with the generic “How can I help you?” or “If you ever need anything, just ask”.
Yet, rarely do we hear an offer for help backed by intent.
This rarity is not reserved for me. It’s my observation that in general, as a society, we miss out on offering genuine help to our fellow humans. For free. No strings attached. Absolutely gratis.
I see this phenomenon quite often on social media. Someone posts a sad event.
“I lost my job”
“I didn’t get the promotion”
“My spouse has cancer”
The comments are profound.
“Feel better soon”
“Hugs and prayers”
Or God forbid. The emoji.
I don’t think we mean to be standoffish. Maybe we’re in a rush. Maybe we don’t want to feel sad feelings. Maybe we unintentionally brush these events under the rug in an attempt to avoid the pain of life.
Words are powerful. Take a moment and watch this beautiful video produced by Purple Feather. I first saw it during a presentation on Inbound Marketing by Square2Marketing’s Eric Keiles.
Words connect us. When the girl re-writes the blind man’s sign, she isn’t simply choosing better adjectives. She is connecting us to the man’s plight. We no longer see him as a blind man. We visualize ourselves in a world of darkness.
This past week, I also spoke with two prospective clients. When I talk about Blazers, I don’t talk about marketing or advertising or promotions. I talk about words. I talk about messaging. I talk about storytelling. The kind of storytelling that resonates with, and attracts, the right audience.
My clients are not simply business people. They’re game changers. They have a vision that is different than the rest of the pack. They want to make a difference for their customers; and for the world.
And the words they choose has a direct impact on their ability to do that.
Words close the gap. Choosing the right words is the first step to creating an iconic brand. By iconic, I don’t mean popular or globally recognized. I mean a brand that is connected with its audience. When we connect with our audience they readily buy from us. They eagerly recommend our brand to others. They are more forgiving when we fail. And they are far less expensive to acquire.
And growing a connected audience is so much more fun than chasing sales. Supporting a connected audience makes business enjoyable. Pushing business uphill is a grind.
Words make a difference. If you read my article “What’s Your Story?” you understand how to create words that matter. Often we mistakenly believe that we simply need a clever headline or creative copy. Yet, it’s not clever and creative that reverberates with the world. It’s authenticity; vulnerability; emotion. When we share who we are, not what we do, we begin to connect on a level that is meaningful to our lives – and our business.
This week I am going to commit to changing my words. I hope you’ll join me. If you like, share how you plan to change your words in the comments below. Maybe we can all learn from one another.
I believe we all have a bit of trailblazer inside us, don’t you? I welcome you to subscribe to my Sunday morning email. Each week I share personal stories of blazing trails in business and in life.
It’s my passion to help others create change. I’ve always found that disrupting the status quo leads to an amazing life where nothing is impossible.