390. Expert Interview: Mastering a New Skill in Your Career or at Home
Meredith Bell has been an entrepreneur since 1982. She’s an expert in helping companies develop the people side of their business. Her software company’s programs are used by consultants, coaches and human resources professionals to help managers become more effective leaders. One of Meredith strengths is building strong relationships. She and her business partners have worked together for 25 years, and many of their clients and resellers have used their products for 20 years.
How to Master a New Skill in Your Career or at Home.
“In the world of work—and in relationships at home, as well—it’s important to recognize how many different skills are needed to be effective in working with others. My focus is on those interaction skills that make a difference in people getting along together. A skill is something a person can learn how to do. We like to distinguish between knowing about something—like when you read a book to learn more about a topic—and actually implementing a concept or an idea and practicing it with someone else.”
Why Is This Important?
Learning a new way to do something that you already know how to do can be very challenging. You continue to go back to the familiar way, even though you know the old way is no longer serving you well. Replacing an old, established way of doing things with a “new and improved” way can seem unnatural, uncomfortable and inconvenient. Building a new habit is similar to doing repetitions in a gym. Athletes know the importance of “reps” in building muscle. In creating new mental habits, there is a similar physical component. Your brain’s neurons are building new pathways, and need repetition to learn to use the new pathway by default. Like working with a tennis coach, you’ll need to practice, practice, practice.
What Are the Key Lessons Learned Here?
“Time, commitment and continued effort are required. If you are committed to improving a particular interpersonal skill, be gentle with yourself and recognize that it’s going to take some time. As with a new golf swing or a strong serve in tennis, you won’t do it perfectly at first. The key is to acknowledge that quickly and admit it to yourself and others. It’s also important to ask the people around you for their support in making the change. There’s no need to be defensive or negative in any way. It’s just part of the process of learning and growing.”
Connecting With Meredith Bell
“How to Be a Support Coach” – 9 free videos + ebook at prostarcoach.com/coachingebookandvideos.asp
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