Focus and Misdirection! Five Rules of Magic (and How They Can Improve Your Persuasion Game)

When I was growing up, my Grandpa always had a joke or a magic trick at the ready. My memories of childhood aren’t well defined, quite fuzzy really, but there are stand-outs with Grandpa Damie’s magic.

"dark jack" by Akki annant, Flickr, CC-By-2.0
“dark jack” by Akki annant, Flickr, CC-By-2.0

Throughout his life and beyond, I’ve heard great things about my grandpa. People remembered his generosity and personal touch. He would receive Christmas cards and accolades years after seeing old friends, coworkers, and neighbors.

How did my Grandpa Damie have such an impact on people?

An impact that was remembered long after? Continue reading “Focus and Misdirection! Five Rules of Magic (and How They Can Improve Your Persuasion Game)”

10 Things You’ll Learn from The Uplifter:
Stephen R. Moore from

Stephen R. Moore sat patiently across from me while I fidgeted with my mobile phone. I didn’t know how my first podcast was going to turn out. I was trying to keep my nerves under control, play it cool, and not waste his time.

Stephen is a leadership and sales coach, helping corporate clients in the car industry get better customer satisfaction and results. His cooperative, Leadership3P, pulls in over $600,000 every year.

His time is valuable, to say the least.

We were already off to a rough start. My plan to

Stephen R. Moore, the Uplifter
The Uplifter was an inspiring first podcast. I am eternally grateful!

meet in a quiet library didn’t work out due to a national holiday (A sincere thank you to all of our nation’s military veterans for your service).

I hadn’t made a backup plan. In my scramble to find a new location, I chose what must have been the loudest coffee shop in miles. Continue reading “10 Things You’ll Learn from The Uplifter: Stephen R. Moore from

Living with Happiness

The Secret calls it Living in Bliss.

Tony Robins calls it Living in a Beautiful State.

Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi calls it the Flow.

Lao Tzu wrote about Tao, the Way of the Universe, in the 4th century BCE.

Whatever name you give it, when you are happy your life is much better. Time disappears. Everything seems easier.

I have the Chinese character of Tao hanging on my wall among the photos that make me happy.
I have the Chinese character of Tao hanging on my wall among the photos that make me happy.

Imagine a pleasant summer morning. The world seems a bit lazier today. You hear the birds singing as you make your way to work. The sunlight warms your head. You hear your favorite song just before you arrive. Your smile is mirrored back to you by a coworker.

You know it’s going to be a great day. Confirmation bias will help to ensure it. Continue reading “Living with Happiness”

Lies and the Limbic Brain

Think about a time when you pretended to continue an uncomfortable conversation as you moved into another room. Sure, you could still talk back and forth, but it was more difficult. Another item soon occupied your focus, which ended the exchange.

Discomfort rules your limbic brain. That limbic lizard brain inside is what moves your body to a safer room when you’re uncomfortable.

I found myself doing exactly this earlier last week. Fleeing the scene of an accidental argument. Continue reading “Lies and the Limbic Brain”

Reading the Confidence Tells of the Face

We’ve trained our faces to lie.

Social order depends on the cooperation of people to accomplish tasks, people that may not otherwise get along. From the Great Wall of China to your office this week, we’ve all put on a happy face to make a situation less confrontational. If you’re looking for truth, the face is one of the least likely places to find it.

Is this smile real or fake? How do you know? Image "t smile" by halbag, Flickr, CC-By-2.0
Is this smile real or fake? How do you know? Image “t smile” by halbag, Flickr, CC-By-2.0

It makes life easier for everyone.

The face is controlled by 43 muscles, adding up to a wide variety of expressions! Even if we can control our facial muscles to an extent, our limbic system still reacts. It’s difficult for most people to maintain a mask covering their true emotions, Continue reading “Reading the Confidence Tells of the Face”

Never Let Your Guard Down:
Confidence Tells of the Torso

“And that’s when I walked in.”

You put down your spoon, absentmindedly. You’re absorbed into the conversation. You lean in, waiting for more details.

Our body language says so much. We’ve all seen someone’s shoulders drop at discouraging news. We’ve all leaned away from someone’s unpleasant tone of voice. Continue reading “Never Let Your Guard Down: Confidence Tells of the Torso”

How Your Lizard Brain Gives Away Your Secrets

Your head contains three brains. They’re all tasked with their own jobs to keep you alive. These brains have evolved over millions of years along with humanity.

"Brained" by Jose, Flickr, CC-By-2.0
“Brained” by Jose, Flickr, CC-By-2.0

The oldest of the three brains is the reptilian stem. It controls our primitive drives for survival, like our desire for food and sex.

To witness the reptilian drive to stay alive, check out this exciting video from the BBC: Continue reading “How Your Lizard Brain Gives Away Your Secrets”

Those Big Ears Will Give You Confidence

In highschool we had to vote for a student government representative for our homeroom, the room we started and ended each school day. There were two candidates in our homeroom. One candidate was studious and seriously wanted the job — she had plans!

The second candidate was a goof who spent most of his school day talking with people. He was charismatic, but he didn’t have any plans for the school government if he was elected (but let’s be honest, those organizations don’t accomplish much anyways).

Who do you think won?

Everyone is drawn to a charismatic personality. Many of us believe charismatic people are born this way, and their leadership skills are an effortless result of their charisma.

The leader fights for the interests of her group. Photo "IMG_2810_1" by Allie, Flickr, CC-By-2.0
The leader is a member of her group. Photo “IMG_2810_1” by Allie, Flickr, CC-By-2.0

This is the story we tell ourselves. This story keeps us from looking at our own skillset to see where we fall short. But this story is not true.

You, too, can develop charisma and become an effective leader.

Charisma isn’t about being high-energy. It’s not about striking out in bold new directions or making perfect decisions. How can you develop charisma? Continue reading “Those Big Ears Will Give You Confidence”