Kickstart Your Writing with Speech

Blog posts go beyond 9-5 communications and include my dog Miller, who teaches me about communication without words. For work related posts only, use the work  tag  or say hi on LinkedIn.

As anyone who faces a blank screen knows, that big nothingness lacking words can be very daunting. There it is, waiting for your brilliant pitch; research tables translated into an audience-engaging format; or perhaps the best leadership speech that will capture how much you believe in your team’s work and serve as inspiration. (A great practice for everyone: tell your team you appreciate them).

If the blank screen is screaming, talk to it.

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Welcoming Imperfection for Excellence

Blog posts go beyond 9-5 communications and include my dog Miller, who teaches me about communication beyond words. For work related posts only, use the work  tag  or say hi on LinkedIn.

 

I used to have a collection of quotes on the bulletin board in my office, among them “Excellence does not require perfection.” A co-worker read this aloud one day and said crisply, “Yes it does!” As a perfectionist, I had to disagree.

I’ve been thinking about this lately, in light of the start to a new year and the word I’m going to choose as background.  Intrigued by Melinda Gates’ approach of choosing a mindset rather than a resolution to guide her through the year, I chose a word for 2017. When I look back over the months, the word really did play a part, even though it wasn’t always at top of mind. For the coming year, I’m going with imperfection.  Read more

Twitter Limits and Literacy

Blog posts go beyond 9-5 communications and include my dog Miller, who teaches me about communication beyond words. For work related posts only, use the work  tag  or say hi on LinkedIn.

 

Twitter’s introduction of a 280-character limit may not have received the best response, but people are using it. I’m glad it’s here to stay. It is going to boost connection and reach, I hope. This new limit will expand Twitter’s microblog style and leave some annoying elements behind. Like comprehension, for one.

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Eyes Over Words: the Photo 365 Challenge

Day 25

Blog posts go beyond 9-5 communications and include my dog Miller, who teaches me about communication beyond words. For work related posts only, use the work  tag  or say hi on LinkedIn.

As blogs do, this one is evolving. I started with the best of intentions: once a week, possibly twice a week. I have two teenagers, a partner, a full-time job and a dog. Guffaw and roll your eyes with me: what was I thinking?

I write every day on the job, often producing blogs at speed and managing social media. I love it, and to keep at it, I need to get away from words. I’ve been thinking about the recharge needed to bring my best to my work, and was inspired when a friend told me about a photography challenge. If this inspires anyone else, wonderful, but please don’t pass it on as a chain challenge. Read more

Six Word Dog Memoirs

Blog posts go beyond 9-5 communications and include my dog Miller, who teaches me about communication beyond words. For work related posts only, use the work  tag  or say hi on LinkedIn.

I love the Six Word Memoir Project. It’s just what it sounds like: a life in six words. In my last workplace, one of the pieces of my job was to help our clients write their stories to share with peers in a newsletter. It helped them reflect on what they felt was was important and helped to build community. In six words, I’d describe my role:

Word worker honoured to highlight lives. Read more

My Favourite Typos

Blog posts go beyond 9-5 communications and include my dog Miller, who teaches me about communication beyond words. For work related posts only, use the work  tag  or say hi on LinkedIn.

 

I was reading an article about dogs this morning and all was going well until I hit rolls when the word should have been roles. (I always take things with a grain of salt when reading about dogs and dog behavior, because there is a lot of information out there that promotes old ideas about dominance training rather than evidence-based research on animal behavior. But I digress.) This morning’s read was an interesting article and had solid citations to back up its points, so I didn’t hold rolls against the writer. Read more

Words That Caught me in May

Blog topics go beyond 9-5. For work related posts only, click the work tag or say hi on LinkedIn.

It has been a busier month than usual with work and at home, one of those months in which the hours have been packed and yet days are short in terms of what I hoped to get done. If I apply a hashtag for the month it will be #marathon. I’m grateful that the hours have been rewarding- my brain is happily popping with work and it has been a joy to watch my youngest as he circles and strides a track, pressing for his place at the Provincial meet coming up this weekend.

Recreational reading has been minimal, but I’ve been lucky to find some gems this month. Just yesterday I read this piece from Nathaniel Fleming, a medical student reflecting on the shift from self-centered student to healthcare provider. My friend Matt told me about the medical school mantle he and his classmates were given, a speech emphasizing how important they were to get into medical school, how important they would be. Fleming acknowledges that impression too, and talks about the shift when he realizes the meaning of his role, and how it balances with others in a healthcare situation. I’m curious how this plays out in teaching in medical school- the balance between knowledge itself, and developing the wisdom of how to support people in health and illness. How do you set up medical students to be open to wisdom? Read more

The Twitter Twelve

Blog topics go beyond 9-5. For work related posts only, click the work tag or say hi on LinkedIn.

rushing riverI was talking with a couple of friends recently about the “Twitter Twelve.” This is one of my tricks to balance social media consumption and sharing with productivity in offline work.

It is so easy to fall into the river of Twitter. You sign in and see surge after surge of information go by, pieces lumped together with hashtags, clogging up (trending!) things here and there, creating masses of information on the same topic. It is easy to get lost for an hour or more, following tags and trends. Read more

Coffee, Connection, and Creativity

Blog topics go beyond 9-5. For work related posts only, click the work tag or say hi on LinkedIn.

coffee cup upside downThere is no human requirement for caffeine in the diet.” I resist that statement, but I’ll accept it as physiological information. Socially, I reject it because of coffee.

Oh coffee, that tempting, full experience substance. A well brewed coffee is a friend with a good story that has the right amount of detail and depth to make you settle in and smile. A poorly brewed one is biting, the person who’s forever critical and unhappy.

Coffee is a lubricant in work and social worlds. “Let’s get together for coffee” might be the start of a project or a partnership. It helps new co-worker relationships have common ground. Read more

Friday Finds: Communications For Your Eyes

Blog topics go beyond 9-5. For work related posts only, click the work tag or say hi on  LinkedIn.
Cocoon in a fold of paint.
I am crazy about Instagram. It’s my first-thing in the morning, last thing at night channel. Before tea or coffee even, it’s Instagram. I love connecting beyond words with the views of people all over the world.  I think I get a feel for some people through their captions, others use few captions so it’s just about the photos. Some I might sense through their profiles, others are so whimsical it’s hard to tell.

This is part of what I love about Instagram: a lot of it is poetry. It’s like a net. There are strings of words, but it’s really about what you see through them.   Read more