In my quest to improve my well being in 2017, I came across Successful Women Speak Differently: 9 Habits That Build Confidence, Courage, & Influence by Valorie Burton.
First, let us learn about Valorie Burton. She is the credible author of several books including Women Think Differently. She is a Certified Personal and Executive Coach who has clients in at leat 40 states and ten countries. She founded CAPP, Coaching and Positive Psychology Institute. She writes with a personal flair that is easy to read, understand and put into actions. She earned a graduate degree in psychology from the University of Pennsylvania and another one in journalism from Florida A&M.
In her book, Valorie Burton writes about achieving confidence through verbal communication and other attributes that give women a winning edge in interviews, business, and negotiations.
She also writes,”It is not usually the smartest or the most talented women who meet and often exceeds their achievements, it the one who can project herself as a winner!”
She skillfully shares the nine habits:
1. Think Differently So You Can Speak Differently
2. What You Say Without Saying a Word
3. Learn to Flip the Script
4. Build Trust Through Respect
5. Ask Powerful Questions
6. Ask for What You Want
7. Know What Not to Say
8. Don’t Just Speak Positively – Speak Accurately
9. Show Up
Your voice describes who you are if you lack confidence, the sound of your voice will show. Speaking with confidence is a skill that can be learned. At the end of each chapter, she shares tips and gives exercises that will help control flaws that may help correct your concerns.
She also includes an afterword section and notes for each habit. Below are my notes from the first chapters of the book:
Although your voice is a large part of speaking, to have people hear your messages, body language also is part of obtaining the sound of success.
Speak in a positive tone. If you don’t like your voice, when talking, try to stand or sit up straight. Also, remember that those listening to you may hear your voice differently.
Pitch, speed and volume and the message you convey will factor into how you will be received by your audience, whether it is one person or many. What your listener or listeners hear will determine if they want to listen to what you have to say, or concentrate elsewhere.
“The human voice is the organ of the soul. Be intentional about how you express your thoughts and emotions through the power of your voice.” – Valorie Burton
When you were told to sit up straight as a child, the instructions were correct. Body language tells people a lot about you and your confidence level. Body language also reflects how you feel about yourself.
Valorie gives a few exercises to demonstrate the role body language plays in our lives as conveying a positive image to others. Hint: practice smiling.
“Nonverbal communication” is a language within itself and should be practiced like any other system when trying to increase your confidence level. Nonverbal communication includes your attitude, posture, wardrobe, and grooming.
“I speak two languages, Body and English” – Mae West
Just as we look at ourselves to improve our confidence, we should also read the body language of those around us to understand people with whom we communicate.
The chapter on flipping the script is about conflict resolution. Have you ever innocently let a disagreement get out of control? Well, that could be because the other person actually had control of the contentious situation. She illustrates how changing the conflict into a learning experience can help defuse many disappointing outcomes and how to put the action in place. Again, that is where knowing how to use and read body language and communication effectively.
Valerie Burton expertly teaches skills which builds confidence that can only be developed through self knowledge, purpose and faith. Please click here for additional information.