“Excuse me, I’m talking.”How to Avoid Being Perceived as Rude

ID-100246937If you’re in a political debate, you may be able to get away with being abrupt, but not in the workplace.  The perception that you are rude can bring your career to a screeching halt.  If you have found in the past that your behaviour is sometimes misconstrued as rudeness, here are some tips that will help you fix that problem:

Be aware.  Just being mindful of your interactions with others can help you manage them better.  Pay attention to what you are saying and imagine how it may be perceived by the people around you.

Pay attention to your body language.  If you look for it, you will find that most people give you a lot of nonverbal clues about how they are feeling.  Watch for facial expressions and body language while you are talking to people.  Are they smiling and nodding or are they avoiding eye contact and turning away from you?  If you are watching, you should be able to know through their body language if you have offended someone.

Get feedback.  Try to find somebody you can trust that will tell you how you are being perceived by others.  Ask this person to tell you if they see you saying something that could be seen as rude.  Sometimes a small adjustment in the way that you speak to people can make a huge difference in the way that they feel about you.

Apologize immediately.  We all step over the line sometimes and when we do, it is best to apologize quickly.  Most people are completely willing to forgive an abrupt comment if you acknowledge it and apologize.

Navigating the politics of any workplace is not easy.  If you rub your coworkers the wrong way it will make it difficult for you to succeed.  The good news is that most people just want to be treated with respect.  Be courteous to each person you encounter and you shouldn’t have a problem.

(Written by Karen Bivand, Image Courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Kick the Procrastination Habit

Is your motto, ‘Why do it today when you can do it tomorrow?’.  If so, then you are causing yourself unnecessary stress and you’re limiting your potential.  Here are some tips that will help you overcome that nasty procrastination habit:

Make it a priority to change.  We all identify ourselves in different ways.  If you often say, ‘I’m a procrastinator!’, you need to change that.  Procrastination is a bad habit that makes you appear less capable and competent than you actually are.  The harsh reality is that you have likely been beat out for promotions and other opportunities by people who are less skilled than you are because you procrastinate and they don’t.  It is time for you to put a stop to this damaging behaviour.

Set your own deadlines.  If you find that you are always ready to go one day after the deadline, then why not set your own deadline a week before?!  Of course, this will require some commitment on your part to take your deadline seriously.

Do one thing a day.  Change is difficult for everyone.  We all have our established routines and doing something differently takes effort.  Start small by just committing to one task a day.  It won’t take up much of your time and it will put you on the right track.

Create a visible task list.  Procrastination feeds on denial.  It is easy to put things off when you allow yourself to forget about them.  Don’t let yourself get away with it.  Write out a list of your tasks and put it in a place where you will often see it.  This will keep the tasks at the top of your mind and you might find yourself working on them when you have a bit of spare time.

Once you start working on your procrastination, you will find that it makes a big difference in your life.  You might feel like a weight has been lifted off your shoulders and that you are suddenly able to accomplish a lot more.  Take note of how much better you are feeling; there is a good chance that you had no idea what this habit was costing you.

(Written by: Karen Bivand)

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