They’ll Tell You How to Sell them; You Have to Hear It to Use it Though

Those wanting to more masterfully and effectively influence others will spend thousands of dollars each year learning the “right” words to say. While any investment in yourself is sound, there is one thing in particular that seems to limit how skillfully someone will be able to persuade another.

I was surprised to discover that after spending thousands of dollars over several years to learn the “right” words to say, that the “right” words could only be revealed by the customer. It was a humbling experience indeed, to learn that in every interaction with another person, they had always been “telling” me exactly what I needed to do to persuade them. When I say “telling” me, it would be more accurate to say “communicating” to me.

There is a virtual treasure trove of non-verbal communication or body language that is offered by everyone we interact with, the problem is, we are rarely aware of little more than the most exaggerated of these signals. Then, when it comes to the words they are using, it is perhaps more important to notice which of those words has the most emphasis, is spoken the loudest, the softest, or is spoken faster or slower than the others.

I will be going into the nuances of non-verbal communication in future articles, for now, I want to address the primary reason we miss so many of the “gold nuggets” of information offered by those we want to persuade. It has been said that people don’t listen, they simply plan what they will say when we shut up! If you will reflect on the last time you were listening to someone tell you about their day, I’m sure you’ll find this usually applies to you as well.

It only seems logical to pre-plan what we will say next; after all, we want to get it right, don’t we? While we’re inside our head “planning” though, everything that really matters is taking place on the outside…and we are missing a significant part of it.

Allow me to demonstrate. I want you to count how many times I use the word dog in the following: I was just about to get out of my car, when a rather large dog approached the left side of my vehicle. It’s not that I think I should be afraid of the dog, but hey, when they’re that big, it doesn’t hurt to be a bit cautious.

Now, for the sake of this example, please keep your eyes below the last paragraph and on this one while you do the following. Take a moment and think, how many times did I use a word that started with “T” in the previous paragraph? For almost anyone reading this article, unless you peeked back, you don’t have a clue. Why? It’s really rather simple, I made sure that as you read it, your attention would be riveted elsewhere.

Internal dialog or talking to ourselves inside our head while others are communicating will create in a similar result. A large part of the solution then, is to shut off the needless chatter, and get back on the “outside” where the real magic is occurring. But how? If you have ever tried to get your head to go quiet, you’ve most likely found that the harder you tried, the louder it got. By understanding the physiological aspects of how this takes place though, we can throw the switch rather quickly, shutting off, or at the very least, significantly reducing the inner noise.

One of the tricks used by mentalists and “mind readers” is to watch the mouths of others while they are thinking. Almost without fail, when someone is thinking of the answer to a question, there are very tiny micro movements that can be seen (if you know what to look for) in the lips, tongue, and jaw of that person. Because we use the tongue, lips and jaw when we are really speaking, they have all become neurologically wired into the actual thinking process. So, if we are to effectively carry on conversations in our head, we have to make minuscule tongue, lip, and jaw movements. Otherwise, the ability to have internal dialog gets “short circuited.” Ah ha, there we find magic.

To consciously and intentionally “short circuit” the chatter, it only requires that we do a few very simple things. First, allow your lower jaw to get limp and relaxed, dropping down about ½ inch or so. Next, pretend as though you have a grain of rice on the tip of your tongue, and that you want to gently hold it against the roof of your mouth. That’s it, it’s that simple. If you are actually doing this now, you should find that while you are still able to “think”, it’s more like a clear channel of awareness, rather than a muddied stream of this and that, while you try to pay attention to the “outside” world.

If you will make it a habit to disengage your internal conversations while interacting with others, you’ll be delighted to find just how much more you’re able to pick up on. It is here, in the information that you are able to harvest now, that you’ll find true persuasion mastery.

© Copyright 2007, Vincent Harris-All Rights Reserved.

About Author