EP 98 - Mary Shores The Power of Conscious Communication in Building Your Business Part 2

Awesomers Origin - We'll talk to an Awesomer about where they came from, the triumphs and tribulations they have faced and how they are doing today. An Awesomer Origin story is the chance to hear the backstory about the journey our guest took on their road to become awesomer. These stories are incredibly varied and the takeaway is that awesomers come in all shapes, sizes, backgrounds, creeds, colors and every other variation possible. On your awesomer road you will face adversity. That’s just part of life. The question as always is how YOU choose to deal with it
Mary is a best-selling Hay House personal development author, and the owner and CEO of what has been called one of the most unique collection agencies in the country. Her philosophy of maintaining a positive approach to life and to debt collection has re-framed her entire organization and the lives of those she’s trained. 

The Power of Conscious Communication in Building Your Business Part 2

Today’s episode is part two of a three-part series with Mary Shores. Mary is the bestselling author of Conscious Communications: A Step-by-Step Guide to Harnessing the Power of Your Words to Change Your Mind, Your Choices, and Your Life and the owner and CEO of Midstate Collection Solutions. Here are additional lessons you will surely love on today’s episode:
Mary shares tips, tricks, and secrets she’s learned to help transform her communication styles.
The importance of reading the book Conscious Communication.
The process and concept of how to communicate with people.
Why being aware of your choices is truly the key to your freedom.

So, let’s listen once again to Mary and how she explains the importance of conscious communication in business and in life.

Steve:  00:05    Welcome to the Awesomers.com podcast. If you love to learn and if you're motivated to expand your mind and heck, if you desire to break through those traditional paradigms and find your own version of success, you are in the right place. Awesomers around the world are on a journey to improve their lives and the lives of those around them. We believe in paying it forward and we fundamentally try to live up to the great Zig Ziglar quote, where he said, you can have everything in your life you want. If you'll help enough other people get what they want. It doesn't matter where you came from. It only matters where you're going. My name is Steve Simonson, and I hope you will join me on this awesomer journey.

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Steve:  01:16    This is episode number 98 in the Awesomers.com podcast series. And for those uninitiated, all you have to do is run over to Awesomers.com/98 to find all the relevant show notes and details and any little links send little bonuses that we may have for you. You can find those all on the website. It's worthy of a visit, no matter what. So this is part two of a three part episode series with Mary Shores. And Mary has been very generous in part one and you've got to hear some of her origin story and some of the background. And today we dive deeper into some of the things that are really important to Mary. Talk about, you know, kind of that neural processing concept and how you communicate with people. We touched on the fact that you know as a best selling author of her book, which I believe is Conscious Communication and she's shared some of her tips and tricks and secrets that she's learned to help transform the communication style for not just herself, but many of those around her, even outside of her own business and of course her book is just another way of sharing that very strong talent and being able to help each of us improve our communication styles.

Steve:  02:33    So as Mary talked about throughout this series, but specifically today, and you're going to hear it very soon. There are some words you should say and some words you shouldn't say, but start with what you shouldn't say because that turns off, you know, prospects or whoever you're trying to make a connection with, and this concept of communication is more than just about business. It's probably going to impact you on personal relationships. It's probably going to impact you on just a peer relationships or friends. How you communicate and is more important than kind of the intent behind it. You know how many times you heard somebody say, well, I didn't intend to insult them because like, well why'd you say that passive aggressive comment to them? And you know, don't be ignorant about the communication really is so important. I'm really thrilled and privileged to have Mary on today because she's taking us through these very advanced concepts and doing it in a very thoughtful and easy to understand way. So let's get into that episode. Today's episode right now.

Steve:  03:34    Really what defines Awesomers around the world is when we find something that regardless of the motivation to learn about it or to become engaged with the subject matter, but we're able to, to kind of recognize patterns and then start putting pieces together and you know, this, this idea that you have a collection company but you actually have empathy and you actually tried to make a connection with people, as you said, that's got to be the only one of its kind on the planet. Right? This is a very unique and that's a result of you putting all these pieces together. How long have you had that particular business?

Mary:   04:10    I've had the business for 20 years, started in 1998.

Steve:  04:13    All right, good. Well it sounds like another year or two and we'll think that the thing has a potential hope that's impressive. Two decades. So obviously whatever you're doing is working well and just based purely on the, the very objective metric of the giant wide monitor you have. I'm going to say it's a success. Look at that thing. That thing's got to be 42 inches wide, 50 inches wide. How big is that thing?

Mary:   04:37    You know, I think it might be 40 or 38. I really don't. I don't remember.

Steve:  04:43    It's a very male thing for me to know the uh, you know, what the exact dimensions of specifications. But that's a beautiful look and monitor.

Mary:   04:49    Yeah, I liked my monitor.

Steve:  04:52    I'm going to just take a leap and say, do you also like spreadsheets? No. So that goes back to the not liking math. So I don't care for spreadsheets myself, but man that would make spreadsheets look so beautiful. That thing is amazing. So let's talk about, so after university and, the community college experience, how did you go onto a first quote unquote proper job before starting your own business?

Mary:   05:17    You know, I had a couple. So the first is um, and I, I actually talk about this story in my book because after my daughter had passed away, I was readjusting to life hit rock bottom a little bit, but things were looking up. I had this job at a bank in my hometown, Danville, Illinois, and really thought this was going to be a great job until it got time for my 90 day review and they fired me.

Steve:  05:42    That's one way to go on to a review.

Mary:   05:44    I mean, you wouldn't think about it like this though. I mean, I'm already pretty much feeling like a failure at life at this point. You know, I was out of my own teenage, had nothing. Um, I, I was always smart that the issue, but without the educational background, like my friends now had, I didn't really feel like I had anything. Um, any hopes of a lasting kind of career. And it's kind of funny because you know, how in your life you can look back at these little moments and I can tell you that that was a huge moment in life. I'm getting, getting, let go from that job, not, not understanding any of it. So I felt like such a failure that the next job I took was as a telemarketer because, um, but, but in, in some sort of strange twist of irony, it's probably the best job that I could have ever had for myself. And I can tell you absolutely that I wouldn't be in the position that I'm in today. I don't even think that I wouldn't, I would have written my book or developed my communication strategy had I not worked for three years at that little small telemarketing company.

Steve:  06:51    That's fascinating. Um, and, and I think again, a lot of people can identify. It's often the, it's not the what simply that happens to someone, right? It's, you know, getting a fire from a job at the 90 day review, not the, that's not the big issue. It's the context of everything happening around it that can make it into the issue and then that kind of, as you said, ironically, pushing you towards telemarketing, which is probably more in the genre of if you have a pulse, the, they're going to keep you on the, on the phones, right? Uh, I was a telemarketer myself as a kid, so I know what I'm talking about was the primary requirement. Um, but I also found my telemarketing experience to be extraordinarily instructive in terms of understanding what people want on the other end of the phone and understanding, you know, how to create that connection and so forth. Um, is that the types of lessons you took away from your telemarketing experience or how did you parlay that into something bigger?

Mary:   07:47    You know, I think it just became a foundation of understanding the power of communication. I mean, obviously with telemarketer, it's very geared towards sales and the sales that I was doing, believe it or not, back then in like probably 94, 95 was a, we were trying to sell caller id. So caller id is, you know what we know now when people call, we know who it's called, you know, we know who's calling and back then that was brand new and no one understood what it was. So here I would be trying to talk to these people, a lot of the elderly and I'd be trying to explain this and they couldn't understand it and you know, like you had to have this, remember they had the display units and so this was what my job was. But I think that ultimately I learned the power of words and the power of words to influence the power of words to create the power of words just just it was in me.

Mary:   08:41    And so later on, you know, I think that debt collections and telemarketing aren't that different from each other. And so I went right into owning this collection agency with the, with the idea that I was going to take a sales approach. I certainly probably didn't even realize how much that job had done for me in terms of understanding sales just because I was like, you. I was a kid. I was just doing it, it was, it was fun for me. I loved all my coworkers. Um, it was, it was a great job ultimately and learned so much, but when it came time to running, you know, dealing with the debt issues, I found myself trying to sell people on the idea of paying the debt. So instead of threatening them and using intimidation, I found myself telling them the benefits of paying the debt, like, you know, enhancing their credit score, getting the monkey off the back, so to speak, you know, teaching, teaching them. But I have to be honest with you that that was an epic failure. So you would think it would you think here and we talk about it, I'd be like sold on the idea.

Mary:   09:52    Well it failed and this goes right back to neuroscience because the reason that it failed is because humans are wired for what's called negativity bias. Now, negativity bias means that we have a stronger reaction to negative stimuli than we do to positive stimuli. So to simplify that for you, you will be more angry if you lose $20 versus happy if you found $20, your body has a strong, stronger reaction to loss than it does to gain and so because all of my competition out there was using the tactics of fear, anxiety and intimidation, my competition was getting the money. I was not. Bottom line, I didn't make the sale. Right. Bottom line didn't make the sale, but there was another underlying reason that this failed and that is because the sales approach did not address the real problem, which is the shame and unworthiness that people feel by having a debt.

Mary:   10:54    That really became another defining moment in my life because once I figured that out, I literally looked at the phone and I said, I want the next person who calls to be happier at the end of the call. Then they were at the beginning and I. It was such a profound shift because I went to all my staff and I said, okay, your job is no longer to get the money. Your job is to make the person happy and then your brain has this like miraculous way of just figuring things out and then you know, that'd be as that became my north star, I began to study every little word, the reaction that people had from every little word and I created a do not say list, which is a list of words that we never say because I know that these words trigger a negative reaction because see, this goes, I think you could as a ex telemarketer, you're gonna understand this, but negative seeds plant a seed of a negative outcome. Whereas positive words plant a seed of a positive outcome.

Steve:  11:58    Yup, makes sense. Yeah, and so this, this interesting paradigm shift, and again, this has got to be unprecedented in the collection space to say that we want to get on the phone with somebody and have them be happier at the end of the call. Then they started, especially at the beginning of the call where you're like, hey, this is Steve. Uh, I'm from debt collection, ABC regarding XYZ. That immediately, that call is not started off on a great basis, so you've got quite a mountain to climb. Was there and, and you talked about the words that you do not say, and maybe probably been talking about this in your book, which we're going to get to, but are there words that you do say to try to help overcome because you got a big mountain to climb there?

Mary:   12:41    Yeah, so I mean like we're talking about the big lesson I learned from telemarketing is the power of words. So the, the words can create and words can destroy. So what you do is, and this works in all business are all communications. Whether you're talking to a, whether you're talking to your client, whether you're talking to your spouse or to your child, but you can always say words that are going to create a deeper connection or you're going to say words that are driving a disconnection. So you know, talking in a way that displays confidence, assurance, you know, there's certain words that I say, well, build connection, build rapport, and build trust. And in every moment in every day when you're communicating with somebody, it's always an opportunity to build a, build, a deeper connection, or it's an opportunity to drive a disconnection.

Steve:  13:29    Yeah, I think that's, that's a very interesting way to look at it, right? That whatever the conversation basis is, whether it's email or phone or you know, in many other ways, we can do things today that you're either adding to that relationship or you're taking away from it, or at least the momentum of the conversation is going up or down based on those inputs or outputs. A, that's fascinating stuff. So, uh, we're going to take a quick break. When we come back, I want to talk a little bit more about some of the defining moments that have happened along your journey and, and probably even a lesson or two thrown in. We're going to talk about your book and a lot more. We've got to do it right after this break. You right back.

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               15:00    You're listening to the Awesomers podcast.

Steve:  15:03    Okay, we're back. Everybody. How about that? Steve Simonson joined today by Mary shores, a great author, CEO, and as if I'm not mistaken, your book as a best selling book as well. Is that right? Mary? And will give us the title of that again. So we make sure that the Awesomers out there can jot it down.

Mary:   15:21    Thank you. It is Conscious Communications by Mary Shores it's available on Amazon and most likely anywhere books are sold. So it did hit number one in three different categories on Amazon, which was self esteem, communications and happiness, which is kind of funny to me because I am just not the poster child for happiness.

Steve:  15:43    Even if this, uh, hopefully it doesn't come across the wrong way, but even as you said that, there's just a little bit of sarcasm baked in there. Thank you for. Oh, go ahead and hold that up again.

Mary:   15:52    Yeah, well, it's true. So the reason I say I'm not the poster child for happiness and thanks for picking up on that is because I feel like we're, we're kind of in the middle of this cycle of positive psychology movement. But do you know the thing is that we're not really designed to be happy all the time. One of the reasons that my communication strategy is so powerful is because I have studied the neurochemistry of our emotions. And so happiness is something that, you know, we are designed to, to build and to create and to experience a wide range of emotions. You know, that's why it's a frequency scale of emotions. Everything from despair, anger, sadness, devastation, all the way up the other end of that to contentment, pleasure, happiness, euphoria, excitement, you know, there's all of these different things. But I think that when we are so focused on being happy all the time, that we're not allowing ourselves to process the more darker things that happen in our life, we cannot just pretend that everything is a choice to be happy.

Mary:   17:03    Because when we do that, see what happens is our bodies are like libraries and they're storing everything that's ever happened to us. So just like, you know, getting fired from the bank, you know, I needed to get fired from that bank to find myself to be in such a despair so that I took the telemarketing job because I was meant to learn those lessons which I was going to bring into my next step of my journey to my debt collections that, you know, one thing just feeds the next and the next and the next. But if you have to kind of go through some of those dark times in order to, that's what creates resilience. You know, that's what creates true grit. That's what gives you that bounce back factor.

Steve:  17:43    Yeah, I can see that. And you know, the, this, um, at the dichotomy, you know, we, people want to seek happiness, but to be happy you have to have been sad otherwise you don't know the difference. Right? And, and this is why I think what you're talking about is very important for people to take note of. And Awesomers will already be taking particular note that you know, how we are able to achieve higher highs is, is from that learning and from some of the inputs that we can that we can control and then some of the things that we can't control as I often refer to them as unwelcome lightning bolts, you know, we don't invite these things unnecessarily. Sometimes there's external factors, but we have to cope with them nonetheless and our ability then to cope with them and process them in whatever way. I'm, I'm interested to hear your opinion on this. So you said that we make these deposits in the library, right? Where we're always checking in more, more things and experiences. If we're checking in a negative experience and we talked about, hey, we shouldn't bury that experience, how do people work through that? How do they make sure that that doesn't become a problem for them?

Mary:   18:51    Well, you know, I think that there's all kinds of ways. I mean, and I think that whatever is your way, that's the one you should do. I think the wrong thing to do is to pretend that it doesn't exist or try to look at life through rose colored glasses. Um, you know, in the ancient, uh, like the Yogis and Sanskrit going back all the way to some of that ancient knowledge. They talk about the concept of Gnosis true, true knowledge, or one way they would say this is, you can be in Vidya - Vidya meaning lens of perception. So is seeing life through a false lens of perception, which means you can either see things as better than they are. You know, we've all had the girlfriend that has the really "bad boy" boyfriend, but yet she sees him as the greatest, but everyone around her or like, you know, they see what's really going on, but she can't see it because she's looking at him through these rosy glasses. Right? She's seeing him as better than what he is. Now we have. The flip side of that is when you're, you're looking at the world through perception of smudged colored glasses. So we all know those people too, that, you know, like, I have a good friend that's like this. She went to Aruba one year on vacation and sure enough, I said to myself, she's gonna, call me and complain about the sand in her swimsuit, and guess what? She did?

Steve:  20:15    No way, so literally like sand on a beach is a problem for her. That's a tough thing.

Mary:   20:20    Right? Because that's. But that's that smudged colored glasses. Right? But then you've got, you've got that true knowledge and the power of true knowledge. When you see things as they really are, think about how much more powerful your decision making is when you are not basing your decisions on seeing your situation as either better or worse than it is. I love one of my favorite quotes is Marianne Williamson, who says a miracle is but a shift in perception.

Steve:  20:50    I like that. Yeah. Very profound. You know, I think that's, first of all, an extraordinarily clear explanation. Uh, you know, we've all heard, I would say most of us have heard of this concept of rose colored glasses, right? And that's easy to see. And your example of that is, is very good, but I've never heard anybody talk about the smudged up glasses. Right? Think of it, there's the 3D glasses you get at the theater after a million people have worn them before you, you cannot see clearly and therefore things are slanted negatively and you don't see clearly when things are selling the positively either. That's your point. Having those crystal clear lenses and saying things how they are is probably a more prudent way to live our lives. So a fascinating stuff. Um, is this, before we kind of talked about some of the defining moments, I'm just curious on the book, what are the, is this the type of thing you talked about in there or what, what would you say is the 62nd elevator pitch for the book?

Mary:   21:46    Well, I think that, um, yes, the, the part here that we're talking about is definitely in the book. Um, I believe it's in a section about rewriting your story because we can see, we can, especially if you've been somebody who suffered some trauma, trauma is not necessarily about the thing that happens, but it's about how it shows up in your present day reality. How is it impacting you from day to day, you know, and is it influencing your decisions? You better believe it is right? And so I feel like conscious communications is a book that teaches ambitious people how to create the life or at least move in the direction of the life that they want to live by harnessing the power of their subconscious mind, by harnessing the power of their words to change their mind, their choices in your life. Because, you know, we're always looking for like instant transformation in our world today.

Mary:   22:35    Right? And the truth is that transformation does not happen overnight, but it transformation does happen with a series of pivots that over time and over your journey, you can definitely move things in the direction that you want to go. Recently I have just become so aware, especially on facebook. Um, I, I don't know if it's because of what I do for a living, but it seems like every other ad I see is some life coach out there that says, oh, I went from broke to seven figures in one month. And you can too. And I look at that and I just, I feel my eyes rolling up in my head because we're into this selling the dream. You know, the old infomercials and ads. You said you're a nice guy. You remember all those infomercials. That was the same thing that they're doing now. But I thought, you know, I don't want to go out there and tell people I have this perfect life. I mean, I might have the perfect monitor.

Steve:  23:30    You definitely have the perfect monitor. I was going to challenge you on that. But I, I understand you're saying you don't have the perfect life. Yeah.

Mary:   23:35    But, but here's the thing. What I can say is definitively true is that my life is much more beautiful than it has then what it was before. And the reason that my life that I can claim that it is more beautiful than it was before is because I have taken my 45 years of wisdom of being on this earth and I have used it moment by moment to know the power of creating connection, to know the power of, of making an impact in my relationships, in my choices. You know, another powerful quote actually from one of my favorite movies, this is 93, so we're past the eighties now, but a Bronx Tale, Chazz Palminteri in a Bronx Tale, and the whole theme of that movie is the choices you make will shape your life forever. And so you know, it's such a simple but powerful concept that understand that each choice that you make in each moment and the way that I say it is every, every word you say, every action you take, every choice you make in those finished slice moments of life is either working to create a deeper connection to what you want or it's working to drive a disconnection, and so it's just that simple.

Mary:   24:48    And when you can understand that awareness of your choices is truly the keys to your freedom, you will get somewhere you will, you will, you will position yourself to move in a direction that will make your life more beautiful than it was before.

Steve:  25:09    Yeah, I think again, that's very well said and quite salient wisdom there. You know this, this premise almost like decisions are a magnet, right? We either make the decisions where we're attracting the good stuff, you know, repelling the bad stuff, or we're going to, we flip that magnet the other way and now we're attracting the bad stuff or repelling the good stuff, but every single decision has that potential as you say, to move us just, you know, little tick towards one way or the other. And I think a lot of us find ourselves going back and forth with decision a decision, right? Hey, I was productive for this time or this day, or I made progress on a relationship or whatever it was. It's not always business and, but then I sat back when I did this other thing, right? And so there's a lot of this one step forward, one step back.

Steve:  25:55    Whereas if we, if we really do realize that the sum of our choices, this is the outcome that ultimately happens as you described, that that can make a big difference. And I have to just say that I support what I perceive you saying as this is not an instant transformation. This, this notion that if you want to make a million dollars before the end of this sentence, sign up, now, this is a, a common, uh, hyperbole sales pitchy, know Guru-y kind of world that we live in. I disliked that stuff and as attractive as it is and so many people, their brain knows it's not true, but they're like, yeah, but what if. Right? And so they, they're like, I'm going to try it anyway, and then you know, well that one didn't work, but this next guy said, you know, by the end of the sandwich, you can do it in and maybe not at the end of the sentence, but the end of the sandwich, we can do it. All of these different parameters. Everybody likes to do these things. And I would just say that using, you know, reason logic and basic intellect, and then those small incremental steps will lead to a better outcome as you described it. Am I on the right track? Am I saying similar things?

Mary:   27:04    Yeah, you're seeing it amazingly well. And you know, I think that here's, here's the concept I'll sell you. By the time your sandwiches through or, but by the time your room service shows up is that you don't need one of those gimmicks or gurus. What you need is to step more fully into who you really are, you know, to, to, you know, I've got, I've got a whole chapter in my book about authenticity. Authenticity is the spice of, of the day, you know, and, and when you can learn to, to fully accept and be who you really are, you can absolutely move mountains. Whatever those mountains are for you. You know, it's as simple as if, uh, I remember a commencement speech that I watched that I, I just absolutely fell in love with where the speaker, Neil Gaiman was saying, if, if the thing that you want most in life where this mountain, then in every step and every day you're either moving yourself more towards that mountain or further away and it couldn't be more simply said.

Steve:  28:10    You know, after hearing so many great things already in this podcast, we should have a little bit of a palate cleanser and have a commercial break right now.

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Steve:  28:45    Okay, that's another great bit of wisdom for Mary. We're going to break it right here for today. This has been part two of the three part series and so tomorrow bright and early. You're going to see part three being released and that will come automatically to you. If you're already subscribed to this podcast and you know, go to itunes or stitcher or Google play or wherever your favorite podcast places and subscribe please today so that you get these updates every single day. You know, this being part two of three. You will hear the finale tomorrow where we talk about more about action steps and about takeaways and things that you can do to improve your communication and indeed improve your life as a result of improving your communication and that, that clear cause. And effect is not always something people think about, they don't always make the connection between communication and the outcome of the things around you.

Steve:  29:40    Right? There's many times and all of us probably fall into this trap from time to time where we're unhappy or angry or we lament a situation that we're in, but sometimes we do that without taking the responsibility of what got us there, what communications did we do or not do, and in what way did we issue those communications? Were they positive or negative towards adding to a positive outcome. All of these things are really impactful and I think Mary has been delivering some really excellent wisdom each and every part of this series. So don't forget to join us tomorrow for the third in our three part series. This has been episode number 98. Run on over to awesomers.com/98. And you'll find all the show notes and details. Well we've done it again, everybody, we have another episode of the Awesomers podcast ready for the world.

Steve:  30:32    Thank you for joining us and we hope that you've enjoyed our program today. Now's a good time to take a moment to subscribe, like, and share this podcast. Heck, you can even leave a review if you wanted. Awesomers around you. Will appreciate your help. It's only with your participation and sharing that we'll be able to achieve our goals. Our success is literally in your hands. Thank you again for joining us. We are at your service. Find out more about me. Steve Simonson, our guests, team, and all the other Awesomers involved at awesomers.com. Thank you again.