Words create worlds.
Positive words create vibrant environments.
Negative words create defeated environments.
Energy is low, when problems, complaints, and falling short is the persistent topic of conversation.
Leaders ignite vitality or drain energy with words.
The rule of vitality: See the good, say the good.
10 reasons leaders withhold affirmations:
- Others haven’t affirmed you. Why should you affirm them?
- They might get a big head if you give too many compliments. Your mission is to help others be humble.
- Jealousy. They have more than you.
- Competitiveness. They need to lose in order for you to win.
- Insecurity. You need others to complement you.
- They’re doing what they’re paid to do.
- You don’t need affirmations, why should they? They should toughen up.
- Entitlement. You’re better than others. You don’t say thank you.
- Negativity. You wouldn’t see a positive if it came up and bit you in the face.
- Self-preoccupation. You’re too busy thinking about yourself.
Not fairy dust, but still powerful:
Words aren’t fairy dust. You can talk about a 6-pack all you want. But, until you get off the couch and work out, you’re stuck with a 1-pack. But, words are still powerful.
A few positive words transform defeat to hope. A few negative words turn victory into defeat. For example, leaders who keep saying, “You could have done more,” after you keep giving your best, take the wind out of your sails.
- You can’t energize environments with negative words.
- You can’t have joyful teams and constantly complain.
- You can’t reach maximum potential while talking about weakness.
Use the 80/20 rule to govern positives to negatives. Spend 80% of your words on solutions, fueling fires, affirming progress, and honoring strengths. Spend 20% of your words exploring failure and weakness.
Environments are built with words.
How can leaders create vibrant environments with words?