I pose this question for your immediate pondering… What is the most powerful tool that a human possesses?
We have at our disposal so many tools, that it would stagger the mind to try and comprehend the most powerful of them all right? We can move mountains, we can build ships, we can blow up buildings, we can move tons of freight at one time, but what tool is the most powerful of them all?
What one tool can create a war, yet calm a crying baby? What tool can ease a troubling mind, or make a multi-million dollar deal? What tool creates companies such as Facebook, but brings down a wall separating a country?
That tool is simply to most powerful tool that a human possesses and that tool is… communication.
We often take it for granted. We use it daily, freely and unthinkably at times. We say things, imply things and express things at a blistering pace throughout the day, but do we ever sit down and think of the true power of communication.
As a coach and as a leader of others, you must take into consideration not only your words, but your body language, your actions, all of which is encompassed by the power of communication. Early on in my coaching, and career, I really didn’t realize the power of communication. The semantics didn’t really mean that much to me. It was easy right, you say what you need to say and you move on. You tell people what you think they want to hear, you hold back what they may not want to hear and you try your best to put on a smile when it may be the furthest thing from your mind.
In a position of leadership, or just life in general, your words carry weight. What you say to those around you carries an enormous load. Undeniably, in our youth, they carry much more weight that you can even imagine. Their minds are being formed by what you say, and how you say it. Think about this for a minute…
Go back in time and remember one single, solitary thing that someone told you that made an impression on you. It is probably not too difficult to think of those words. How powerful, to have so many years in between what has been said, and now, yet you can still remember it. Mine brings back the time, place and even the scenery of my surroundings. Powerful right?
When you speak to your athletes or your students, speak as if this is the one thing that they will remember you by forever. If you were to immediately cease to exist, is what you are about to say going to make them want to remember you?
Today’s youth hear so many things. They are constantly listening to the lyrics of music, watching movies, reading tweets, posts and emails. They are being communicated with at a mind-boggling pace, but what are they hearing? Do you think they are listening to those lyrics? Do you think they hear what is really being said on TV?
Be that voice that they hear. Choose your words wisely, make a positive impact and realize the power you have when you speak and act toward a kid your are coaching or teaching. Make it so that they have no choice to listen to you. Make your words so powerful that they walk away, and your voice rings true to them. I was at a conference this past week and the presenter said “it is physically and mentally impossible to pay attention to more than one thing at a time”. Apparently extensive research has been done to prove this, the mind is incapable of paying attention to more than one thing at a given time. Multitasking only exists when the mind bounces from one thing to another.
Speak so that you are the one thing they are listening to. You have the most powerful tool humans possess, use it wisely.