Tapping into your "Joie de Vivre"
Ever have one of those friends that you know is really well liked? He walks into a room, knows everyone, and is warmly received. She is spoken highly of by those in her organization and beyond.
Sometimes they bring the positive energy and light into a room. Other times they make us feel good, important, listened to, cared for.
Often we can't quite put our finger on what it is that they have....but when we see it, we know it. It's what the French refer to as "joie de vivre" - the joy of life. Yes, that's the special magic sauce. It is the happiness, the spirit, exuberance and zest for life!
Want to be more like them? Here are some tips:
Give the credit to others. Just do it. Take the criticism and distribute the praise to everyone else but yourself! Let them take the spotlight again and again.
Acknowledge that others are important. As a leader, we are often perceived as the knower of all and, often, the important voice. Give that away. Others have important advice and perspectives.
Choose your words carefully. We often make the mistake of saying the wrong thing at the wrong time, so take the extra moment to contemplate how your words can support, nurture, grow and heal.
Be present. Easy to pull out the cell phone, toggle from one conversation to another, and not be focused on the topic at hand. Taking the extra effort to make others feel like you are present is that special something that those special people have, and you can too.
Be grateful. Few write the thank you for the little things (and the big ones) that others do for us and that we observe. Be the one that says thank you, the one who acknowledges and often writes the personalized thank you.
On paper. With a pen. And use a stamp.
Laugh at yourself and be gracious along the way as you practice those little things that can strengthen your joie de vivre. And then help nurture it in others. The world can use more special, more joy, more gaiety, and certainly more joviality.