rhetoric (rĕt’ər-ĭk) n. the art or study of using language effectively and persuasively.

I love words – reading, writing, speaking, listening and, most importantly, meaning and understanding. Words can edify and connect us, but if we’re not mindful when we use them, words can be a divisive weapon that separates us. Below is a compilation of thoughts, pet peeves, cool vocabulary words, suggestions and observations about how we communicate with each other in our personal and professional relationships.

pragmatic communication

no one can do everything

no one can do everything
but everyone can do something.

You may have seen the following letter written by "This is Us" actor, Lonnie Chavis. These images are from his ...
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tension and paradox.

tension and paradox.
recognizing valid points on both sides of a complex issue.

When I agree with someone about a point they make, it does NOT follow that I agree with EVERYthing they ...
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Don't forfeit your opportunities to influence others.

Don’t forfeit your opportunities to influence others.
part 2: doxing and terminating are easy.

Saw a comment by an HR professional in which they condemned someone for posting a link to a story and ...
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Don't forfeit your opportunities to influence others.

Don’t forfeit your opportunities to influence others.
part 1: Dismissing alternative viewpoints doesn't strengthen your argument or your credibility.

Over and over, I see facebook posts by seemingly kind people instructing friends who [they perceive] believe differently than they ...
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Aunt Jemima's real name was Nancy Green.

Aunt Jemima’s real name was Nancy Green.
and she BUILT that brand.

Does Aunt Jem need a brand update? Yes. UPDATE TO CLARIFY: By "brand update" do I actually mean change the ...
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Permission Marketing vs. Push Marketing

Permission Marketing vs. Push Marketing
build a more effective email list.

Some unsolicited advice to anyone trying to reach potential clients or customers: INVITE ME to Join Your Mailing List, DON’T ...
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Our words and actions, whether online or IRL, reveal something of our true beliefs and character.

Our words and actions, whether online or IRL, reveal something of our true beliefs and character.

As often as I see it, I will never be desensitized to adult bullying. It surprises me every time. Especially ...
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To the marginalized and silent 99%: You have something of value to contribute.

To the marginalized and silent 99%: You have something of value to contribute.

I recently snatched up a $1 offer for access to a huge amount of content within an online writers group ...
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Fauci, the Surgeon General and the "lady" doctor who didn't smile.

Fauci, the Surgeon General and the “lady” doctor who didn’t smile.

I saw something in a facebook comment yesterday that immediately and instinctively evoked what I'll conservatively refer to as a ...
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Stop Talking About What's Wrong. TAKE ACTION to Help Make it Right.

Stop Talking About What’s Wrong. TAKE ACTION to Help Make it Right.

Working toward positive change is a much more productive use of time and energy than complaining and/or trying to thwart ...
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Fine is a Four Letter Word.

Fine is a Four Letter Word.

Don't listen to condescending voices of marginalization and mediocrity. Voices that say you don’t have to work as hard as ...
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maybe they're not GIVING you a hard time. maybe they're HAVING a hard time.

maybe they’re not GIVING you a hard time. maybe they’re HAVING a hard time.

The next time someone gives you a hard time, consider the possibility that it has NOTHING to do with you ...
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Sometimes, even when it’s not your fault, it’s still your problem.

Sometimes, even when it’s not your fault, it’s still your problem.

Some will step up, take ownership and work toward a solution. Some will complain and search for someone to blame ...
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Notice What Others Overlook and You’ll See Opportunities they Don’t.

If You Want to Recognize Opportunity, Pay Attention.

Notice What Others Overlook and You’ll See Opportunities They Don’t. Seems simple. but you know as well as I do ...
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Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard. #DoYourBestEvenWhenYouDontNeedTo #GoodSteward #AudienceofOne

Hard Work Beats Talent When Talent Doesn’t Work Hard

When you are talented in some area and doing a job you are overqualified for, it may seem like you ...
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Sometimes, with people, you find what you look for. #SeePeople because we're all #JustaDifferentKindofBroken

You Find What You Look For. What are you missing?

Sometimes with people, you find what you look for. What if you questioned your assumptions? What if you asked questions? ...
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Repentance leads to positive change but guilt is self-destructive, counter-productive and a waste of time.

Repentance vs. Guilt
reACT or reSPOND?

Repentance leads to positive change, but guilt is self-destructive, counter-productive and and a waste of time. Guilt: feelings of deserving ...
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When Words and Actions Conflict, Actions Carry the Stronger Message

When Words and Actions Conflict, Actions Carry the Stronger Message
are you duplicitous?

Do you have a friend who you KNOW differs from you with regard to faith, politics, relationships, social issues, etc? ...
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the unintentional message behind accepting the status quo.

the unintentional message behind accepting the status quo.

Check it out. Such a cute video. Encouraging. A great example of optimism. But another thought nags at me. Scroll ...
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problem solving and benchmarking.

problem solving and benchmarking.
facing a problem? search for what's been done before.

I'm not that special. I feel like I've written about this before, but when I'm facing a problem, I tend ...
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Don't Insulate Yourself from Developmental Feedback (constructive criticism). Be Brave. Seek it out.

Looking for a Qualified Teacher or Credible Mentor?
4 Things to Consider:

Recently, in a post entitled "Want to improve? Give people permission to tell you the truth." I wrote: "As scary ...
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Memo to Me: Listen more than you talk.

Memo to Me: Listen more than you talk.

Remember: You can learn a lot about and from others. What they think... How they feel... Something they've learned... maybe ...
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Give the people you trust permission to tell you the truth

Want to improve? Give people permission to tell you the truth.
(And don’t punish them for it)

Do you want to improve? To get better at what you do? If the only feedback you are receiving about ...
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It Doesn't Matter if You CAN. It matters if you DO.

It Doesn’t Matter if You CAN. It matters if you DO.

Lots of people CAN do something. Not everyone does. There's opportunity in that. If you have a talent, be a ...
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