When something unexpected happens in our lives, just like in the movies, everyone and everything seems to freeze, and the soundtrack playing in the background stops abruptly with the sound of a needle across vinyl.
A record scratch.
It is inevitable that we will all experience “record scratch” moments in our lives. These big, disruptive moments require resiliency to move forward with our lives, for we are never the same.
My record scratch moment was when my son Jake died in a car accident on February 19, 2022. He was 16. That fateful day completely disrupted my life and only recently I have rediscovered my voice.
Trauma recovery is not a D-I-Y situation. I am surrounded by a team of amazing humans who continue to help me along my healing journey. A few of these very important individuals have already been guests on my podcast, Finding Joy with Kara (see Iva Nasr, Charles Crenshaw, Jr., and Graehm Hall episodes).
Authenticity is greatly important to me — so all of my featured guests are individuals who walk their talk.
Trauma encompasses a vast spectrum. There’s no competition and no judgment as we speak about varying topics including generational trauma, grief, PTSD, and what we can do to heal our wounds and be better humans.
Please follow me on social media and subscribe to this podcast. @karakavensky on IG, TikTok, FB, Twitter
Lisa shares how her record scratch moment of major life disruption led her to a new career in executive comms. We discuss how we show up with effectiveness, why people lie, and how showing up for ourselves is equally, if not more, important than how we show up for others.
Lisa reminds us to use communication for kindness.
Tell me more.
Lisa Mitchell, CFI, is a communications expert and founder of Power Body Language. She specializes in effective communication for leaders, body language and non-verbal communication skills, provides expert analysis during jury selection, and frequently does media segments on current topics. She is a Certified Forensic Interviewer (CFI), a Certified Body Language Trainer, and holds a Masters Degree in Management.
IG, Threads, TikTok: @lisamitchellindy
@karakavensky on FB, IG, LinkedIn, TikTok, Threads
Receive updates on Kara’s new memoir release, FINDING JOY here.
Sponsored by: Adam Gibson Design
Produced by: Marilou Marosz
Original music written and performed by: Adam Gibson
Communications and Body Language Expert Lisa Mitchell joins me today on Record Scratch. She’s the founder of Power Body Language. Lisa specializes in effective communication for leaders, body language, and nonverbal communication skills. She provides expert analysis during jury selection for legal teams and is frequently featured in media segments on current topics. She is a certified forensic interviewer and a certified body language trainer. She also holds a master’s degree in management. Lisa is the COO of the Fight for Life Foundation, an Indiana-based nonprofit that supports deserving but underserved students to help them be successful in school and in life. Lisa Mitchell, thank you so much for joining me today on Record Scratch. You are a superior communications expert, everything from body language to how you present, how you show up. And in fact, how you show up is the theme for our conversation today. And first of all, we’re really close friends, so full disclosure. And you are one of the people who just came running into the fire when Jake died. And you showed up in every iteration of that term. It could possibly mean. So thank you, thank you. And I’d like for you to explain your communications background. I know I’m skipping over stuff and you want to speak.
It feels weird and uncomfortable to be thanked for showing up in a moment like, you know, of course.
Of course, that’s just what — Yeah, but it doesn’t diminish the extreme level of gratitude Adam and I have for you. So it really, it means a lot. And when you’re in the midst of chaos and you don’t know what you need and you have people who show up, they help you figure out what it is that you need, even though I was unaware of what was going on, but you did all the things that we could have hoped and are super grateful for you. With this theme of showing up, which actually you did it in very literal sense of that term, I want to explore your experience in getting into this communication space. We overlap a teeny bit where we’re both writers. I lean heavier into writing than you do, I believe, with you do more coaching. And you’re really into the down and dirty science behind how we show up, how we present all of the nonverbal communications, how people walk in a room, all of those things, and it can be clumped into body language, but it’s so far beyond that, and it means so much more than that. Explain what you do and then also how you got into this work.
It’s very on brand of the, you know, showing up theme because I, the reason I’m in this work now at any degree, let alone the complete rabbit hole I fell down seven or so years ago is because I wasn’t showing up. I wasn’t showing up in a meaningful way. I was physically present for my relationship and as a mom and as a business owner, I would show up in spaces, but I wasn’t really present, right? Like I wasn’t clued in at all. I was kind of frankly in crisis mode, complete overwhelm, lots of life things going on all at the same time and basically just imploded everything within a matter of 48 hours, closed for business locations, let go of a bunch of staff that I love like family, packed to U-Haul, moved my daughter and I away from our home, called it quits on my relationship and my marriage because I was at a crisis point. When I finally clued into myself, it was like waking up in the morning and being like, “Okay, I can’t wake up in this day again. So I can either kill myself. I can commit myself to a mental institution. And that was not in a humorous way. That was a very serious option. Or I can just grenade everything and deal with the chips as they fall. As you can imagine, there was a lot of really several years of court and paperwork and lawsuits and bankruptcy and divorce and transition and lots of reckoning with myself in a lot of ways.
And when I ran out of other people to blame and turned the focus inward, it was like, “Well, you weren’t showing up. Being physically present was not enough. You really weren’t listening to yourself. You weren’t picking up on the cues and clues of what other people weren’t saying to you. You weren’t challenging what was verbally being told to you. You were just so in survival mode that you just took everything, just what was in front view was true. There was no discernment. There was no inspection. There was no reflection really with myself and my own feelings or the experience other people were having with me. I was pretty determined not to learn that lesson twice because it was painful the first time and I also didn’t want to work too hard to fix it because that takes a lot of effort at that time.
So really cluing in the first foray was into the body language and nonverbal communication and what that skill set could really do as almost like a life hack.
I’m not going to get it all right all the time, but at least if I’m intentional and understanding what people aren’t telling me, but are showing me and understanding how I’m showing up in the room and how that’s impacting all of these things that I say are important to me, then I can start making progress and I can start learning more and start making a real change and how I show up in a room and how I respond to other people too.
So that was really kind of the front door. That was your gateway drug into the communication space.
Through that process, at what point did you realize that you were listening to yourself and listening to your inner wisdom and your inner communication? Because I think that you’ve got all this exterior noise going on and you’re working on swimlaning, all of that stuff. I just made up a verb. And at what point did you realize that you were starting to really connect the brain and the heart and the gut, the gut instinct on things and really pay attention to that as well?
We talk about record scratch moments, right? And for me, the catalyst of that was, I know you have been in some unsatisfying relationships in the past or some challenging relationships. And when you get in this cadence and rhythm with somebody, you can kind of autopilot the Okay, I know I’m gonna say this and then you’re gonna say that and then I’m gonna respond this way and You get to the point where you’re just can we just I’m tired Can we just shortcut it to the end and where we go to separate floors and ignore each other for a couple days? Because I don’t really need to run the whole script.
So it was in the midst of one of those very Indictable arguments where a truth that had been waiting to hear finally was spoken. I was like, okay thank you because and that was a record scratch because it was like finally Finally, it’s been articulated and now we can make different decisions because data Yeah So that was really the thing that kicked me out of routine or kicked me out of autopilot so now we know and Now it’s time to do things a little differently and I’ve been running with my hair on fire for so long.
I don’t even know myself I don’t know who I am as a mom.
I don’t know who I am as a partner.
I don’t know who I am as a businesswoman or an entrepreneur.
I’ve just been showing up literally doing, trying to put out whatever fires in front of me.
I didn’t have time to reflect or time to be objective or time to even evaluate is what I’m doing working or did I just not die today? Right.
Well, that’s survival mode. You’re defining survival mode.
Well, it was finally when I was, now I have to make a change. The script is broken. There’s new data. I have to do something.
And so that was really where I had to just sit and be like, “Okay, what is even going on” Let me hit pause for a minute and back up. Which way is even up right now? And so that was really kind of the start of where I started to clue in different things needed to be done than I had done before.
And you started studying, right? You took classes, you’ve taken courses.
Yeah, when I fall down the rabbit hole, as you know, Kara, from being friends with me so long, I want to know. My brain just wants all the information. I want all the data. I want to read the studies. I want to know everything about something when I attach to an idea.
So I really started cluing in and working, you know, working with people that are experts in the field and getting certification, specific certification around nonverbal communication.
And then I got introduced into the world of forensic interviewing and really loved the marriage of the nonverbal and the spoken words and how we choose to place words in a sentence and how the number of words we use when describing something has significance around an internal state of being.
There’s just such an intricate and important codependency between the words people select and where they put them in their communication and then how they display them through body language and nonverbal communication.
And it’s just a much more efficient way to get to honesty and to get to reality and get rid of a lot of the nuance or supposition or assumption that we do when we don’t have good data, we don’t understand what we’re seeing or hearing.
So I went all in on all fronts and really wanted to just be able to feel certain about what I was seeing and hearing from other people, being able to get to the truth there and having more control because I’m just kind of naturally a socially awkward person.
I don’t like to meet new people. There’s no level of comfort in any of that for me. So this was like, how do I grow my confidence?
Because I really do want to connect with people, but I was living pretty isolated outside of like surface level relationships because I didn’t really have the tools or the understanding to manage myself in a way that made it easy to connect with other people and tell who was really genuinely connecting with me or who was maybe more leveraging me or something that gave me a greater level of certainty.
How has your studying of all of these topics and communication impacted your family?
When you went home for the first time to your parents and what did you notice that changed in your ability to read them?
The caveat I give when I’m speaking on this or training groups is once you see the stuff you can’t unsee it, so leave the room if you don’t like the truth because you start to see, you do start to see with a greater level of discernment and it’s not like I’m judging people but you’re seeing more honesty. You’re seeing versus what you’re hearing versus what you’re feeling. How comfortable are you knowing that people that you love are not always honest with you? People lie for one of three reasons to protect themselves, to protect the feelings of somebody else or to make it mutually beneficial and just ignore things, right?
So people do that, especially people close to us a lot more than we would like to admit and to varying degrees and usually without malice. But there is a lot of deception present in our daily lives and all our interactions.
And it’s just interesting when you start to have a higher level of discernment and awareness around that and getting to choose how you move and how you show up despite the things you’re seeing. It’s a test of grace when it comes to family, really, right?
Yes. Yes, indeed.
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A lot of times people lie because they’re just uncomfortable. It’s not to necessarily even mislead you. It’s just to avoid their own internal discomfort.
I love all of the grace you’re providing and all of the outs on this. This is lovely.
Well, yeah, people get really creepy and won’t hang out with me because they think I’m diagnosing them all the time, right? Or decoding them all the time. I don’t want people to feel defensive around me. So my default is off duty, I like to say. I am off duty unless it’s egregious and I can’t not see it. Or you ask me to be a little bit more intentional about how I’m experiencing you, which people do a lot. And that’s fine. I’m happy to do that. It can be really intrusive. And frankly, a lot of this can be weaponized to embarrass people or to entrap people or to manipulate people. I don’t like to put that energy out, but it is powerful enough that you can influence people that way.
So, I just try to be careful. When I pick up on things on others, I want them to feel more comfortable. If I’m getting the sense that they’re uncomfortable in some way or maybe lacking a little bit of confidence, I want to naturally boost them.
I’ve been a fitness professional since I was 15 and I owned a Pilates Studio for 15 years and I approach body language a little differently where I can watch someone walk across a room and I know what’s wrong with them based on their posture, their gait, and I know how to fix it. And I’ve stopped giving unsolicited advice, but I can’t not see it. I’ve just stopped sharing verbally like, you know, if you did some other stretching or if you worked on this and you could help correct your spinal curvature or whatever.
But do you find yourself and you see someone who’s really displaying some pretty obvious like girls who develop early and they’re hunched forward, lacking a bit of self-confidence. You want to give them a positive boost or compliment them in some way. And I know that I do that all the time.
Like, “Oh, I love that jacket.” Or, “You’re so beautiful.” Or, “Just some lovely compliment. And I mean it. I really mean it because I’m seeing maybe something that they hope is there or they are unaware that’s there or they’re looking for validation in some way.
You’re always so great about doing that. I’ve been on the receiving end of many of those compliments when there could have been criticism. I think there’s always one of the experiences that we’re having around communication as part of this program that I’m doing in the nonprofit that I work with.
We’re working with a population of students, junior high and high school that are historically underserved and unheard. It’s a STEM curriculum, but it leads to a lot of other great conversation because they are allowed to speak their truth We are not teachers.
We’re not there to judge them or grade them. We’ve had some of the most profound things come out of these conversations.
Last night in particular, we were talking about data and one of the questions is, “Well, how do you know if data is truthful?” And one of the girls there, she’s a sophomore and she was saying, “Well, a lot of surveys and things that they do at school, they just put the answers they know they’re supposed to put because they don’t want people to be intrusive.
So I don’t want to put that my stress is at a nine or I don’t want to put that there’s an issue in my home because putting that out even in an anonymous type of survey, their experience has taught them that speaking their truth brings detriment or brings punishment or brings risk or brings betrayal.
It’s very dangerous for them to speak their truth in some cases. And when probing further, it was, “Well, why do you? When is it okay?” Because they’re like, “If I have a problem, I don’t want anybody to help me. I want to work it out.” A high level of autonomy and self-reliance, which is really admirable.
But probing further into when do you, it was, well, if there’s a relationship. I have to know that this person is somebody who the idea of a trusted adult is pretty foreign.
Right? So just because you have a position of a school counselor or a teacher or a parent does not automatically in this context make you a safe person or someone I have a relationship with. Really interesting and again, like speaking of opportunities to be able to affirm someone because she’s somebody who came in and sat off to the side in a beanbag chair and was on her phone and was only there because she felt like she had to be and then she ended up really leading the discussion.
Her peers that were sitting not engaging actually moved as she was speaking and as she was facilitating and she was and I told her I said, you are an incredible facilitator.
You would never claim that because you’re just sharing your experience and point of I said, “But you got six, seven, eight other kids who had no intention of participating, leaning in and nodding and affirming you and adding their experiences. You are a powerful communicator.
And she was like kind of hedgy on accepting that. It was textbook facilitation of a really great, honest discussion. And I learned a lot in how she managed that. So I do try, when I see somebody just really doing a good job, especially people think they aren’t good communicating or they aren’t good at teaching, aren’t good at sharing ideas or they aren’t good at, especially the teenagers that we work with, they just don’t feel like they’re good at a lot of things.
And they’re really phenomenal. So I try to be very specific in my feedback of the way you open the discussion up by saying this or asking that question was brilliant.
And then where it goes from there, who knows?
For clarity, Lisa, you work with Fight for Life Foundation. I interviewed the founder, Marlon Jackson, on I think my first, might have been my second season with Finding Joy with Kara. It’s an incredible organization.
So I’m lucky to get to do a lot of different things and play in a lot of different spaces that are all things I feel are important and joyful. So I got a pretty good gig going here.
Yeah. It’s a phenomenal organization. I can’t say enough about it. I absolutely love it. I love how it was founded. I love the work that you all are doing. And in taking the communications that you apply to these young kids, you’re also doing coaching for executives and people who are presenting to large audiences. You present to large audiences. So how do you evolve your skills or your feedback and the tools that you bring when you walk in a a room and how you show up for those kids, and I’m saying kids respectfully, these are young adults, to a large room of adults that you’re presenting in front of a few hundred to a thousand people or something.
How does that shift from a classroom to a larger scale?
It’s never not scary. The few people that have seen me before I go on a stage, and it doesn’t matter if it’s mineral aggregates or pro athlete, the level of nerves and the level of imposter syndrome and the level of, oh, it’s going to suck and nobody’s going to like it. All of that is just, I’ve just embraced it as part of my pregame at this point and proud of it because it means I really, really care about the quality of work that I deliver.
So I have every doubt. It’s never comfortable for me.
It’s fun and I’m passionate about it and I love delivering good work and I do get in the zone once I’m up there, but waiting in the wings or in my hotel room before I go down to Keynote, I’m a disaster. But it’s part of my process.
So what are the key things that help you when you know you need to show up and be present for others?
I am a classic over-preparer. There could be events or cocktail hours or whatever, like fun stuff going on, speakers dinners the night before and I’m in my hotel room rewriting my entire keynote by hand.
So it’s knowing beyond a doubt. My one keynote that I run now, I’ve run it 100 plus times in front of an audience. I have run it probably 3,000 times without an audience.
It’s really just for me. My confidence grows with my mastery of the content no matter what trips me up or if I forget something I can just seamlessly, because I’m the only one who knows what it’s supposed to sound like.
So I need to have the confidence to know I can overcome any little blip on the radar. I maniacally rehearse. I record myself, which is painful. I watch it without listening to it to see my mechanics and my body language. Because when I rehearse, I am full choreography. I am moving on the stage, punctuating my key points. I’m using illustrators along the way, because people’s brains are wired for movement. I record it. I watch it without listening. And then I listen without watching.
So I hear, “Is my emotionality right? Is my energy staying high? Do I have the right inflection at the right time? Am I using pauses effectively? Am I boring to listen to?” And then I watch and listen to the whole thing again. Is it over-preparation maybe?
But is it mental peace for me to know that I’ve seen myself do it enough times to know I’m Okay. Energy shifts and crowds are different and AV might work or not work. There’s a million things you don’t control, but I do know I am prepared. And that gives me a lot of confidence. I play a lot with the audience. I’m not a keynoter that gets up there and talks at you for an hour. I’m bringing people in and let them kind of really be a big part of the experience and that’s not traditional and I don’t care. That’s what brings the right energy. I mean, I mean, my material should be fun. It should never feel like a lecture. Because people are using your talk every day.
You’re decoding people while you’re interacting with them every day, no matter what your industry or profession is. So it’s really practical. None of the stuff I teach is technical or rocket science. There are no big words in my sessions. I’m very, very serious about the integrity of the material, but I don’t take myself too seriously when it comes to what that experience feels like on stage. Cause all sorts of crazy stuff happens. You gotta just laugh about it and have a sense of humor.
Well, and to bring that public type of situation a little bit more intimate. So say someone’s meeting someone for the first time in a small networking event or going on a date or something. How does someone prepare for engagement and showing up the way that they hope that they’re perceived?
The intentionality is really key to me. And again, I like things easy and I like I’m simple. So I have a hack and it’s the three words hack before you engage with someone. Ask yourself the question. If this person uses three words to describe me when we’re done interacting, what three words do I hope they would choose to say about me? I hope they think I’m present. I hope they think I’m knowledgeable and I hope they think that I’m engaged or that I’m fun or that I’m interesting, whatever, right? Pick your three words for it. And it’s going to vary by audience. It should vary by audience. Because three words on a date are not going to work for three words with your kids or not going to work with or a large group or context is context is king is the king filter.
So figure out your context, pick your three words. And then what’s really fun about how our brains and body works is like once you say it’s like setting your internal GPS.
This is the experience I want to create by the end and then it kind of recalibrates your face and your vocal tonality, your gestures, how you use your space, you lean in, do you lean out, do you get big, do you play small, your body and your face and your voice start to help support you because now they know where you want to go by the end. So it’s really kind of an amazing system of communication in your mind, in your body on board. Like your internal circuitry wants you to win, but you have to tell it where you want it to go first. And that’s a mindset game. That’s an intentionality. And just really having a moment to think about how do I want to show up.
And do you take that moment right before? Do you give yourself a minute, 15 seconds?
It depends. Sometimes I’ll do it while I’m sitting at the table with somebody.
If I feel like I’m unfocused or I feel like I’m distracted or maybe my face has been in my phone or I got off a phone call or there’s some unexpected annoyance or frustration that pops up. I don’t always prepare myself before I sit down or get on screen or pick up the phone with somebody. You can recalibrate at any point. It’s literally like taking a breath and a pause to be mindful of, okay, where do I want to go? I want to be present. I want to be warm. And I want to be somebody that makes this person feel safe.
I have affirmations. I have a little thing that I say every morning that pops up in my calendar or that sitting on my homepage as a reminder. So when my eyes open and I reach for my phone as I inevitably do, the first thing I see is the thing I want in my brain first. The first thing I see because I’ve built it into my system and I’m using technology to enable it is the positive thing, the thing I want to center on, the thing I want to be my universal truth for the day, no matter what other chaos shows up for me on that phone throughout the day, at least I know I started right and I do the same thing at the end of the day.
What are some examples of that? What are some of the things that you recommend as those positive messages? Does it depend on the person?
Yeah, it really depends on what you need to hear. So like for me, a big one is being expansive and being abundant and being peaceful about whatever comes next.
Releasing control, accepting abundance, receiving love, all of those things that I have a hard time or I don’t think about or focus on even though I say I want them in my life.
I just put them right in front of me and they show up. Whether I’m in the mood to see it or not, they show up and our brains are really great about automating. If you won’t even realize it, you will just realize you’re more intentional with your communication because your brain is going to be like, I got it. I get where you’re going. Let me just help you with this and you’ll start to automate some of that process. you’re going to pause for a minute and you’re going to know exactly what you’re doing, even if you’re not consciously processing it, you’re going to be like, “Oh yeah, I’m calibrating for this meeting.” And then your confidence goes up and you’re more intentional and that interaction just feels better to you because you’ve already set the end goal.
Brains are pretty useful if we just give them a little bit of help. It’s just nourishing your whole system. You get a great start in the day by having breakfast, by eating healthy, by drinking enough water, like you have to do that mental exercise.
I’m a big on sticky notes. One of the coaching clients I’m working with who’s getting ready for a big presentation. We have a finite amount of time and we have an outcome.
I always like saying, “What are you afraid of? What happens if you screw this up? Let’s just get it out, figure out how big of a problem it is.” And there’s a challenging relationship with a few people on the board. And so, sticky note that she walked out the door with was, “My board loves me and they’re excited to hear what I have to say and they support me.” And she still has the sticky. It gets on her mirror. She made one for the car. Even if they don’t, like your brain is going to start to believe the story that it’s seen all the time.
So full stop. I did not know that you use sticky notes. I have multiple colors of them in stacks all over my desk and put up everywhere. And whether it’s a to do or something, but I need to start writing down more positive affirmations.
I believe on those. I have them on my daughter’s mirror. I wrote her like 10 affirmations or 10 things that are true about her that I just put on her mirror. So whether she wants to hear it or not, or whether I get a chance to say it or not, it’s on her mirror. Again, you get used to seeing things and then you start believing it. That’s a powerful way to keep yourself calibrated without having to be so intentional about it.
So what are, aside from this, which sounds like one of your go-to hacks of the three words and these positive things. Is there anything else on your top list of prep that people should be mindful of as they leave the house or prep for a Zoom meeting or whatever it might be?
I think clarity and curiosity are really two tenets of good communication.
So, whether you’re giving information or receiving information, the goal is to have clarity around it.
There’s a quote by George Bernard Shaw that says, “The biggest mistake in communication is believing that it’s happened.” We’ve all had that experience where you’re like, “How are you dumb? How did you not?” I was so clear on this and the other person is like, “I have no idea what you’re talking about. I’ve never even heard it before.” So much conflict and stress and chaos and relationship breakdown is because of that scenario. One person thinks they’re perfectly clear, the other person has no idea what’s going on and there’s lots of reasons for that.
But for me, that clarity check is allowing space for questions or asking the open-ended questions or just owning it and be like, “You know, I know I throw a lot of stuff at you and I haven’t created a lot of space for you to ask me questions, so I’d love to know what I could give you more information around or what I could clarify for you or what I can maybe give you more context around.” So I own it first. I’m the one that’s a bad communicator. Please help me communicate better. And people are always like, “No, that makes sense, but what about this?” Right?
Or then they start to reveal more truth or go to a second level of openness with you Because you’ve acknowledged yourself as maybe being deficient and you’ve given them the opportunity then to feel safe enough to. Oh, well, I really didn’t understand this. Can you tell me more about it?
Yeah. That vulnerability and almost like psychological safety in that conversation can get you better questions, deeper knowledge and ultimately greater clarity.
That’s amazing. And I love that you said the curiosity and just making sure that you have clarity is huge. So thank you for extrapolating on that. That’s super important.
Yeah. My favorite question is, it’s not even a question. It’s an invitation. I say, tell me more.
Tell me more about that.
You and Kelly Corrigan.
And people are like, oh, and then you get this whole other flood of information. It’s an invitation. It’s not a demand. It doesn’t feel pointed. It doesn’t feel targeted. It’s just show interest in some way.
What are you most proud of?
Whoa. Like, uh,
just in life or communication related or of the things that you’ve experienced on created.
I am proud of using communication as a tool for kindness. Because I think that there is an incredible capacity for people to be kind and I think that there is an incredible need for people to receive kindness. And so often people are used to receiving unkind communication.
Right. It’s never been easier to be exceptional because people are so used to mediocrity.
It takes so little and the way I use this with communication and to kind of relate back, people are so used to being spoken to unkindly or being spoken to transactionally. Like, “I need you to do something.” Or being completely ignored. There is such an epidemic of loneliness.
So if you’re in a room with a bunch of executives, what’s the question that you ask them? How many times have you gotten home at the end of the day and felt completely invisible except to people who needed something from you? Unseen.
You go through your whole day, you transact all day long, but how many people really see you or acknowledge you or speak to you as a valued person instead of just someone that can do something for them?
I think that relates back to the whole concept of people do not remember what you say to them, they remember how you made them feel. And if they felt seen and heard and valued, that’s huge.
It is huge. And it’s absent a lot of people self-identified as invisible because unless you need me to fix a problem for you, you don’t, I don’t get acknowledged. Unless I can do something for you, I don’t hold value, which is intrinsically false, but something I’ve struggled with for a long time.
I’m only valuable when I’m productive for someone else’s benefit. That was my, it is still my number one limiting belief. That is, I know it’s not true, but it’s still something I can, I can go through a day and feel, right? I was only valuable when I did something for someone else or people only saw me or people only text me or called me or emailed me when I needed to do something. No just acknowledgement, no just casual care. And I use the word casual care, but it’s just straight acknowledgement, straight recognition. Kindness is so lacking right now.
It’s really difficult to navigate daily life because so many people are so unkind as default. So because people are used to that as an intentional communicator, you have such an opportunity to gift, truly gift one kindness, acknowledging them, speaking to them, complimenting them genuinely by just helping them not feel invisible that day.
And so that’s always one of my challenges when I’m in a room full of people or keynoting or training, who can you gift today with your communication? Not just sharing information. That’s easy. comfortable with, but it feels a little less comfortable to be kind Like it feels vulnerable or it feels like they could reject you or it feels like they could be suspicious of you. It could be confrontational even to be kind sometimes if someone’s not ready to receive kindness. So it’s, it’s an act of bravery to be kind, you know, which sounds so weird. Like how have we gotten here where people are automatically ready to fight you if you say something nice to them? But it’s where we are right now.
Yeah, so true. Lisa, thank you so much for joining me today and having this very important conversation.
Thanks for having me, Kara.
Lisa Mitchell shared with us an abundance of awesome tips.
Here is what I was able to capture and you may have had additional ones on your list.
The three-word hack.
What three words we hope people think of us as the takeaways from an interaction.
Before she presents, she prepares, she records, she watches herself and she listens again and again to her recording to get her presentations down.
When it comes to communication, two things are key. Clarity and curiosity.
Post-its. She’s got post-its all over her house. It probably looks like a checkerboard with fun colors.
Use positive affirmations and put those post-its everywhere to keep yourself calibrated.
And when you’re in a conversation with someone just say those three words, “Tell me more.” Kindness is something that’s free. Let’s all practice it.
Thank you so much for listening to Record Scratch.
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Record Scratch is produced by the incredible Mary Lou Morose.
Original music, written and performed by Adam Gibson.