Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Love Poems For Valentine

Please enjoy another one of my love poems.

Swimming Through Love
Cry with me
Rubbing your softness into my skin
Let us blend our tears together
Concocting wet sunshine
To flash across our years
Let your fingers trace
And let your lips erase all the pain
Swim with me
In wet desire
And may the juices flow
From one love to another love
So that we may drink and taste the wine of one another
And let us be drunk on love
Feasting on the meat
Of each others pure heart
And let us dance in the others dreams
While the bright moon of paradise
Shines on this night of our love
And may the sun rise
Upon our bodies entwined
Like rope, like bread, like a thread
By our long time...

That love poem, again, builds a tight connection to nature. Some of my poetry has been compared to Pablo Neruda for this reason. I am not trying to pat myself on the back (or maybe I am!) but I like the comparison, certainly. I also like blending nature and romantic themes. It's just the right combination for my particular brand of love poems.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Male Body Language Can Be Such a Give Away - Whether Men Like to Admit it or Not!

Male body language will always give them away, but you can learn how to spot the tell-tale signs of a man who's interested in you so you'll never be left guessing again!

The Approach

If a man is interested, as he approaches you he will pull in his tummy, puff out his chest and stand taller. He’ll then start the preening!


This will take the form of:

  • Reaching for his throat and straightening his tie
  • Smoothing his collar
  • Brushing imaginary dust from his shoulder
  • Rearranging his shirt, cufflinks or other clothing
  • Smoothing his hair
  • Thumbs in belt

Some of the key signs that show he's interested

1) Hooking his thumbs in his belt
This highlights the genital region and says 'I'm virile'. (When used with other men this means they are staking their territory and showing that they're not afraid). Leaning towards you

2) Body positioning

Body positioning is critical. If he's interested he'll turn his body towards you. If you're standing or sitting in a group look at his feet, if one or both of them are pointing in your direction it's a good sign.

3) Holding your gaze

Holding your gaze for even just a split second longer than necessary, combined with dilated pupils, is a really good sign.

Look out for the eyes following the 'triangular formation':

  • eye to eye
  • then down to the mouth and chin
  • down to the rest of the body
  • and back up to the eyes again in a triangular formation.

This is not confined to male body language. Women are excellent at using the intimate gaze. (see female body language) - men are not and often don't even pick up on it when they're on the receiving end of one. A man's intimate gaze is generally quite obvious.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Female Body Language Will Always Give a Women Away - No Matter How Hard She Tries

With female body language,as with male body language, women display similar preening characteristics to men but often are a little more subtle than their male counterparts when used in flirting. Never-the-less there are additional signals to look out for which generally indicate an interest in the person they're talking to.

The Head Toss

Women do this to throw their hair back over their shoulders, attract attention and to show off their neck. The head toss is not exclusively for women with long hair and can still grab someone's attention when used by women with short hair.

Exposed wrists

If a woman is interested she will expose the smooth, soft skin on the inside of her wrists.She will also show the palms of her hand whilst talking.

The 'intimate gaze'

Look out for the eyes following the 'triangular formation': - eye to eye, then down to the mouth and chin, down to the rest of the body and back up to the eyes again in a triangular formation.A particular subtlety of female body language.

The pointing knee

When sitting down one knee is bent to allow the foot to be tucked under the opposite thigh. The knee point will be aimed at the person the woman is interested in. It is a relaxed, informal position.

The shoe fondle

If a woman crosses her legs and lets her shoe on the top leg hang off her foot pay attention - if she starts playing with the shoe, allowing it to slip on and off her foot then you're being given a clear message of interest.

The leg twine

Apparently many men consider this the most appealing sitting position for women. With one leg pressed against the other it appears to be extremely toned and, combined with the woman placing one hand on her thigh, gives a clear call for attention and probable interest.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Confident Public Speaking - no matter how shy you are!

In public speaking, it's not what you say it's how you say it and this makes all the difference. By following these simple tips you’ll be on the way towards transforming yourself into a confident and engaging public speaker no matter how shy you might be when you start out.

That Vital Preparation

There are two elements to your preparation:

  1. Your Content
  2. Yourself

Deciding what you are going to say is the easy part, but do make sure that you are very clear about the purpose of your speech. What message do you want to leave them with? What really can you come up with? Don’t try to feed them too much information at once and please don’t read any slides to them!. Stop from time to time to check their understanding and (if necessary) get their agreement

By far the most important is preparing yourself. When I say preparing “yourself “, I mean you need to feel comfortable being “you” in front of your audience, rather than a different person altogether. If you suffer from “stage fright” then try out some of the exercises available to help you in such situations.

If you are unable to engage with your audience in a relaxed and confident way, what you say becomes irrelevant – they won’t be listening!

You need to be able to develop an instant rapport with your audience. Once you’ve got that connection they are much more likely to listen to you.

Here are some rapport building suggestions:

Get there early:

Get there early and introduce yourself to your audience on an individual basis. Be interested in them as people (where do they work, live, travel from etc). You’ll get a much better response later on from a group who feel they already know you.

Find something that you have in common with your audience

Whether its childhood memories or a dislike of traffic police, you need to identify something other than the subject matter that you share with your audience. And something that you can use as a link to your opening .

Then ask them (something like) “Who else finds parking in the middle of town difficult”, raise your hand and you’ll find some of your audience will copy you. Then have a brief exchange with one or two of them on the subject you’ve just shared. They’ll all then see you as a real person rather than a “Public Speaker”.

Smile and make eye contact

It’s what you’d do if you were talking to an individual and public speaking is no different; so make brief eye contact with as many in the room as possible, looking all round the room, into the furthest corners and to the front row and back again. Catching people's eyes for a second will keep people interested and listening.

Your Entrance

Grab their attention straight away and you’ll give off an air of confidence:

  • Stand up straight
  • Keep your head held high
  • Look around at your audience
  • Make eye contact as you look around.

Your Position and Posture

Whether you are sitting or standing make sure that you are balanced with both feet on the floor. Standing or sitting with your weight to one side or legs crossed, gives the impression of being imbalanced which can lead to your audience thinking, sub-consciously, you are unsure of yourself and what you are saying. In a more traditional public speaking set up, leaning into or slightly over a podium or holding any notes tightly can make you seem nervous and unconvincing.

Your Tone and Gestures
Vary the speed and rhythm of your voice.

A monotonous voice will send the audience to sleep so allow your voice to rise and fall naturally during the delivery and inject some enthusiasm and emotion into your voice to convey the point. It’s not only infectious, but your enthusiasm will overshadow any shyness! Use arm and hand gestures to emphasis any points.

If you want the audience to agree with you open your arms in an expansive gesture. A downward gesture will reinforce the point you want to get across. Keep your voice slow - don't be tempted to speed up as you are getting to the end.

Keep your voice strong and clear and keep maintaining eye contact with the whole of the audience. Finish your speech with a hand outstretched 'over to you' gesture and a smile to indicate that you've finished speaking and that you expect a positive response from your audience.

If you’ve had reason to illustrate any points on a flip chart, putting the cap back on the pen, will also tell them that you’ve finished. Conversely, if you are asking questions and writing down their answers, leaving the top off the pen tells them that you are willing to accept more questions.

By adopting some of these ideas, your audience will feel that you've informed and entertained them. They'll remember you as a confident communicator rather than having attended a "stuffy" public speaking event.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Body Language - saying so much, without speaking

The majority of actual conversation is composed of body language, so it’s obviously important to have an awareness of these non verbal cues, if you want to get your message across. It’s also important to be able to recognize them in others

Your level of confidence affects your body language, very much like how real words are pronounced and stressed. Each action, subtle or emphasized, should properly compliment the idea, whether or not you choose to use it with words. People will understand your body language only if you confidently present and project yourself.

Positive Body Language

Positive body language is defined as showing gestures or facial expressions that convey an optimistic or positive response, or simply meaning "yes". The most obvious form is to simply nod your head in agreement. Other notable facial expressions would be smiling, brightening, or opening your eyes wider and showing enthusiasm and interest with a gaping mouth.

Open arms, an openly expressed torso and widely spaced legs are also known as positive forms of body language, which means that you are welcoming the thought or you are positively responding to the conversation. Mirroring is another technique where you tend to imitate at least one gesture that the other person is doing to show agreement.

Negative Body Language

Negative body language is the opposite, where you show disagreement or refute part or the entire idea of any given conversation. You can show negative responses without words by shaking your head, frowning, gritting your teeth, or raising your eyebrows. These classic facial expressions will immediately show your objection.

Crossed arms and standing your ground with firm feet placement is a great way to express non verbally. Raising your index finger when trying to emphasize an idea against the subject being raised often helps. Make sure you don’t point directly at any individual, since you're particularly addressing the concept and are not setting out to be personal.

The idea between positive and negative body language is to show your response in a way that coincides with the words you're saying or are about to say - something that's particularly important in public speaking

Here are some more of the valuable applications of body language:

Some elements of female body language and male body language are different. However there are a number of areas where they overlap.

Eyes And Eyebrows

The position and movement of your eyebrows are some of the most noticed elements when you communicate with a person face-to-face.

A classic example on body language that conveys apprehension is when you have your eyebrows converging in the middle, as with frowning. Even if you talk softly and slowly, the person whom you are interacting with may think that you are almost about to lose your temper.


Another body part that is usually interpreted for the probable mood of a person is the mouth.

A retracted lower lip that is almost bit by the upper teeth is usually a sign that the person is holding back and waiting for affirmation or action from the other person.

A retracted upper lip that's bit by the lower teeth usually signifies a person who's holding back and keeping mixed reactions, as with a reaction to the message being conveyed by the other.

Such small movements of the lips have significant implications to the person seeing them and may serve as a basis to either continue or halt the communication process.


The arms and legs are considered responsible for a larger concept of body language, as these are more profound and have a heavier impact.

Crossing the arms over the chest usually signifies doubt, mistrust, impatience, or closed-mindedness. Combined with the body resting on one leg and having the other stepped away and angled, the whole idea of this unwelcoming look is heightened.

Examples on body language may be corrected with appropriate gestures by practicing and internalizing how you would probably feel if you were the one seeing those actions you are doing. Actions often speak louder than words, so it's best to always be conscious of your gestures and movements.

Making a “Steeple” with Your Hands

This is often used in superior/subordinate interactions. It can demonstrate confidence and a 'know-it-all' attitude. There are 2 versions:

  1. The raised steeple - when the person is talking, expressing their opinion
  2. The lowered steeple - when the person is listening The steeples should be interpreted in conjunction with other signs. If they are preceded by positive body language, for example talking with palms open and leaning forward, then the steeple indicates a positive conclusion is likely.

If it follows negative signs, for example legs crossed and arms folded, then the outcome is likely to be negative.

Palm gripping

Holding your head up high, chin out and one palm gripping the other hand behind your back. This is a confidence/superiority position. You have your stomach, heart and throat regions exposed which is an unconscious act of fearlessness. If you are in stressful situation assuming this position can help calm you down and take control of the situation.

Arms crossed

This is a negative or defensive position. Most people will assume this position if they disagree with what they are hearing. Even if someone is agreeing with you, if their arms are crossed they will have a negative attitude towards you. Their negative attitude will continue until they have uncrossed their arms, once they have done this you will have a better chance of bringing them round to your point of view.

Mirroring positions

You often see two people talking, standing in the same pose. This indicates that they are in agreement with each other, they like each other. If one uncrosses their arms, the other will do the same. If one stands with one foot forward, the other will assume the same position.

To establish a rapport with someone, mirror their poses, or even their breathing - this will have the effect of relaxing them and giving them a non-verbal indication that you are both thinking along the same lines.

Body positioning

The easy way to tell whether the person you're talking to is enjoying the conversation: The person is standing facing you with their body and feet pointing towards you and mirroring your positions. The tell-tale signs that someone's feeling uncomfortable or not enjoying the conversation: The person's head is turned towards you and appears engaged in the conversation - smiling, nodding etc, but their body and feet are pointing away from you.

 If someone's body is turned away from you it will be facing the place where they'd rather be. If they're pointed towards another person or the exit then it's time to terminate the conversation or do something else to attract their full attention

7 Tips for a Confident Handshake

A person who is confident gives a firm handshake (palms pointing downwards in most cases).

Someone who is nervous, or shy gives a wilted handshake (palms pointing upwards in most cases).

  1. Smile while shaking hands, but don't smile for too long because it might give the perception that you're gullible or not too smart.
  2. Make eye contact for around 3 seconds while shaking hands.
  3. If you're sitting down, stand up to show respect when shaking hands. Remaining seated while shaking hands may give the impression that you're not interested in the other party, and may offend them.
  4. With sweaty hands, wipe off the sweat with a napkin or handkerchief before shaking hands.
  5. Extend your arm outward to show them your enthusiasm and confidence.
  6. Your palm should come in contact with their palm. This conveys openness and sincerity, and proves that you're not hiding anything.
  7. Shake hands firmly, but don't give too much pressure.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

My 7 Point Plan for Getting Rid of Shyness - forever!

When you walk into a room full of strangers are you often overcome by shyness?

Does your mouth go dry when speaking in public ? Does your face redden? Do you start to stutter? Maybe you’ve decided it’s not worth the stress and avoid strangers altogether.

You needn’t.

Follow this 7 point plan and you will get rid of any embarrassment and stage fright forever.

1.    Draw a circle on the ground about a metre in diameter...... either real or imaginary.

2.    In your mind, create a picture of the future event you are feeling scared or bad about. Turn that picture into a full multi coloured video with sound effects, in which you play yourself. Identify the specific point at which you begin to feel self conscious; be as specific as you possibly can.

3.    Now put that video into off mode, and have a look around the room (to help you to cancel the picture).

4.    Now think of a past scene where you were fully confident and energized, succeeding in achieving your outcome, with no sign of feeling shy whatsoever.

5.    As you see yourself in the good scene step into the circle, be right in it; feel the feelings you felt, hear the sounds you heard in that past scene when you were supremely confident.

Increase the intensity of the association with the good feelings. Turn up the intensity another notch. When those feelings are completely filling the circle step outside of it, leaving the circle full of your good feelings and effective resources.

6.    After checking to see if the circle is still full, go inside your head and get the first video of the feared situation again and get ready to switch it on. Start to play it, and just as the moment when your fear was about to be cued in, step right into the circle, completing the video in the circle with all your resources available to you.

Take your time to enjoy the completion. A partner might usefully help you to watch for clues as to the effectiveness of the process by looking for changes in your breathing, posture, blushing, the absence of those beads of perspiration or sticky palms.

7.    Now test things by stepping out of the circle and think of your how shy you used to feel. How do you feel now?

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Improving Self Confidence - you can if you think you can!

Improving self confidence is possibly the last thing we might be expecting to need do, when as children with such vivid imaginations, we could do so many things without batting an eyelid because no one had told us we couldn't. Then once we started believing we couldn't we applied it to so many different situations in our lives.

We all know just how creative young children can be. Right now, your fridge door may be a living example of this very fact. Whether or not they can draw, they do so and proudly bring home the fruits of their creativity.

That is until they get to an age when they are being told ‘they can’t and are wasting paper’and their confidence starts to take a dip. UK cartoonist and trainer in visual thinking, Martin Shovel exploits this and turns it to good advantage in the work he does within his adult students, improving self confidence and in reawakening their creativity.

I remember a number of years ago (long before I knew anything about the theory or Paul McKenna techniques), my daughter Criona was having a difficult time studying for an exam. She was sure she was going to fail. No doubt you’ve been there.

Once you find one reason for failing you can so easily come up with so many others, then it’s a kind of downward spiral. On this occasion, just before the floods of tears, I asked her to recall how she felt the previous term, when she won the cup for her outstanding performance in history.

“Fantastic”, she said. “How would you like to get that feeling again”, I responded.

Criona was able to visualise her previous success and then imagine it as a future success. Her mind was unable to make that time differentiation, so suddenly she was able to adopt a new more positive state of mind.That's improving self confidence at the "flick of a switch".

If you believe you can do something or you believe you can’t – you are right. Tell yourself you can do something and you open up the neurological pathways that can provide you with the resources for achievement.Suddenly you gain self confidence!

Why not Write down some ‘can do’ beliefs and place them by the bathroom mirror?

For example:

  • I am as good as anyone else
  • I always give my best
  • I focus on what I want, learn from my mistakes and let go
  • I have amazing gifts to share with the world

Then just repeat them to yourself every morning and evening.

Here are some other ideas you might like to try. Just note your improvement in self confidence:

Walk tall

The down-and-out shuffle along, low in self confidence.Walk upright with a spring in your step. You’ll be telling both yourself and the world that you’ve important things to do. More so, you’ll succeed in doing them. When you catch yourself slouching, just imagine that your head is being supported by a wire, just like a puppet’s and stand upright. There's a lot more to body language than you might think! Adopt a new belief

Think of a belief you’d like to own and imagine what having it will enable you to achieve. On a daily basis, act as if the new belief were true (even if it feels artificial). You’ll be reprogramming your brain in the new positive perspective.For instance if you were looking for a promotion at work,then act as if you’ve already got the job (they say - fake it til you make it!!).

Have faith in your own abilities

Checkout the detail. Sound out others about your interpretation and understanding – they’ll be flattered at being asked. Use your strengths and style to your advantage in supporting your position.

Look at what you’ve already achieved

Relive your life so far and compile a notebook listing all your all achievements. Write them down. Flicking through the pages of this book will work wonders in helping to boost your confidence. Spend a few minutes each week enjoying the success you’ve already had.

Beat self consciousness

If you should feel self conscious or be consumed with shyness in a social situation,turn your attention to others. Ask them questions, show interest and make them feel comfortable. It’s more difficult to be self conscious if you are occupied. And taking an interest in others has the peculiar effect of boosting your own confidence – as well as theirs!

Stop procrastinating!

If you have an idea, then do something about it. Action will help conquer fear and can be a really smart way of improving self confidence. Decisive action feeds and strengthens confidence.

Don’t try to go it alone

If you need improving self confidence on an ongoing basis, ask a compassionate friend to help guide you. There’s a fine line between being pushed and being guided. Make sure you choose the right person.

Ask questions

You’ll be less likely to react, panic or lose control.Asking questions, gives you time to think. It buys you breathing space –apart from finding out the truth.You’ll be (and feel) better equipped to respond logically and calmly.