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

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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Who Sent the Stronger Message at the 2018 Tony Awards? De Niro? Orin Wolf? or the Audience?

Who Sent the Stronger Message at the 2018 Tony Awards? De Niro? Orin Wolf? or the Audience?

Some might say De Niro sent the strongest message. From the looks of the internet on June 11th, he got ...
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Buzz Lightyear and Woody Duplicity Everywhere

duplicity. duplicity everywhere. whenever words and actions conflict, the actions carry the stronger – truer – message.

The following excerpt came to me via private message a few weeks before the 2016 presidential election: "I enjoy a ...
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People talking without speaking. People hearing without listening.

People talking without speaking. People hearing without listening. Why would anyone want to engage in conversation with someone who thinks they are stupid?

January 20th [2017]. I should NOT have gone on facebook. So. much. hate. contemptuous mocking. sarcasm. ridicule. Not just for ...
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"But there ain't no point in talking when there's nobody listening so we just ran away."

“But there ain’t no point in talking when there’s nobody listening so we just ran away.”

It was facebook's "On This Day" feature that prompted me. Browsing through all my facebook posts on January 16th from ...
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step outside your comfort zone.

step outside your comfort zone.

Some of you know I serve as a career coach. Just last week I found myself in a Panera Bread ...
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Bill Nye. Regular Guy.

Bill Nye. Regular Guy.

Confession. Every time I read or hear something Bill Nye says, I have an instant flashback to this 1990s video ...
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the 1% rule. a minority with too much free time? or representative of the 99%?

the 1% rule. a minority with too much free time? or representative of the 99%?

Something has bothered me for a while. When someone says that a certain group of people "thinks" this or "says" ...
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the most divisive word of all: "THEY"

the most divisive word of all: “THEY”

After the events of the last few days, my resilience is worn-down. I can't read another post or comment by ...
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a lesson in humility. and a reminder.

a lesson in humility. and a reminder.

Dr. Doofenshmirtz might call the first part of this post my "backstory." ~ I'm a firstborn and an ISTP (67%) ...
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say what you mean. don't be mean when you say it.

say what you mean. don’t be mean when you say it.

I cut waaay back on facebook over the last few months. Derisive sarcasm and hate were saturating my news feed, ...
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fiddlesticks

#edify: profanity

The first curse word each of my children heard came out of my mother's mouth. Let's just say it wasn't ...
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negativity. flip it or zip it.

negativity. flip it or zip it.

Note to Self: Every time you began to say something negative, stop. and consider two other options: flip it or ...
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Happy atheists don't care if Christians pray. They just don't.

Happy atheists don’t care if Christians pray. They just don’t.

This morning, I followed a link in my facebook news feed to an article about a family who was praying ...
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Be salt and light. Matthew 5:13-16

seasoned with salt.

If you profess Christianity, please be careful in your discussions about controversial issues today. Please don't be arrogant. You're never ...
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Ephesians 429

say what you mean, but don’t be mean when you say it.

I've been saying that for years. To my kids, to students and to myself, whenever the situation calls for it ...
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sarcasm and stupidity

sarcasm: religious and political poison.

Reading too much on the internet today and keep thinking one thing: Sarcasm is an ineffective persuasive technique. It's condescending, ...
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the positive impact of negative feedback.

the positive impact of negative feedback.

I've known for a very long time that I'm different. Not "better" different. Because, really, "better" is relative. Better than ...
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