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Episode 009: Ability

Transcript from Stirred By Words Episode 009: Ability

Chrissy Holm (00:05): Do you love words? Are you passionate about diving into meaningful conversations? Hi, welcome to Stirred by Words, a podcast that focuses on words and questions that impact our daily lives. I'm your host, Chrissy Holm, health educator, writer, curious creature, and now podcaster.

Chrissy Holm (00:41):

Today, we'll start with a health tip. This week's tip is gratitude. "Gratitude is the quality of being thankful or to show appreciation," states According to, gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships. A study that was published in the Journal of American College Health took 913 undergraduate students from a mid-sized Southeastern US university and explored four potential hypotheses to explain the beneficial outcomes of gratitude. The results? Gratitude was related to less suicide risk via the benefit associations with hopelessness, depression, social support, and substance misuse. Today, what we're going to do is we're going to write down or say out loud three things that you're grateful for. For me, I'm grateful for the outside and fresh air. I'm grateful for my voice and ability to share my perspective. And I'm grateful that you're here listening today.

Chrissy Holm (01:59):

Now it's your turn. Repeat after me and then fill in the blank. I am grateful for blank. Great. Let's do it again. I am grateful for blank. Excellent. One last time. I am grateful for blank. Fantastic. Now just notice how that makes you feel, and I challenge you to keep doing that throughout the next week. Now it's time for today's word, ability. The first definition from states, "Power or capacity to do or act physically, mentally, legally, morally, financially, and so on." Number two, "Competence in an activity or occupation because of one's skill, training, or other qualification." For example, the ability to sing well. Fun fact, the word ability was first recorded in 1350 to 1400. And words that are related to ability are capability, capacity, intelligence, skill, strength, aptitude, and comprehension. Today's question is what are some of your strengths and abilities, and how does that impact how you see the world? For me, my strengths and abilities are learning and then problem solving. I'm a sucker for learning new things from meditation to sex education from search engine optimization or SEO to spreadsheets.

Chrissy Holm (04:01):

I like learning how to do things and how they might apply to my life. I'm always signing up for courses through Coursera online, YouTube, you name it. And a lot of reading, another ability of mine is to problem solve. I like to take complex situations, figure out the real problem, and then find a solution for it. For example, if something doesn't work while I'm updating my website, or if there's a process challenge at work, I like to ask questions to determine the cause or play around with the system and figure out why it's not working. Having that ability to learn and determination to problem solve come in handy when I'm working on a project or working with a client. And how does that impact how I see the world? I think I look at everything as an opportunity to learn and then to problem solve, to find an easier, more effective way to do it. Next, we'll hear from Amy Coleman, freelance writer and content creator on her thoughts to this question: what are some of your strengths and abilities and how does that impact how you see the world?

Amy Coleman (05:10):

The two strengths or abilities that I'd say that I'm focused on in my life would be my organizational skills and my customer premise. And I'll get into what the customer premise is here in a second, but my organizational skills have grown and changed throughout the years. You have to be organized. You can't have a business, you can't be a writer or a musician or an artist or an engineer or a doctor. You have to have some sort of organizational structure to your life, and everybody's life is going to be different. So you have to find what works for you, and I oftentimes have people go, "I just can't get this right." I'm like, "Oh, have you ever tried X, Y, and Z?" "Oh, that would work for me!" And then they go off and do it. Doesn't mean it works for me personally, but I'm really good at organizational skills and organizing myself as well as organizing other people.

Amy Coleman (06:01):

And I know that sounds very strange to hear me say that, but I'm very good at listening to the words that you use, and I can tell you what's going to fit for you. So that's kind of like my super human skill, is what I like to say. Then my customer premise, so I believe that customers come first. You don't have a business without a customer. Now, does that mean your customer's always right? No, your customer's not always right, but it's how you treat your customer is what matters. People nowadays don't treat customers with respect, dignity, or anything else. And it doesn't matter if you're a restaurant, a writer, an engineer, your customer is what matters. That is what is going to be your bread and butter. So you need to always treat everybody with respect and dignity. You do not know what that person has to spend.

Amy Coleman (06:53):

You do not know what that person has in mind. They could be dressed in ripped jeans, raggedy t-shirt, grungy tennis shoes, and they could be one of the wealthiest people that you ever have come across. You still treat them with the same amount of respect as somebody who dresses with a linen suit and diamonds and all of that other stuff. It's just how I do things. And it gives people that warm, fuzzy feeling when you treat them with respect and dignity. You look them in the eye when you talk to them in person. If you're talking to them on Zoom, you look at the camera. You're not looking at the screen. And I know I do this. I don't know if other people do, but when you do so many Zoom calls and all of a sudden you're looking at the screen, but you're not looking at the camera.

Amy Coleman (07:39):

When you look at the camera, that actually is like making eye contact with people. That speaks volumes to people. It makes them feel like you are somebody they can trust, they can talk to, they can confide in. You want to build a trust and a rapport with your customer base. That's something that I do. I personally think that it affects how I see the world, because I think that I have an empathetic heart for people. And what I mean by that is I will listen to what they want. If they want me to write about how they started their business and they didn't have anything and how they had this great idea to do thingamagigs and sell them on the market. Now they're a millionaire or whatever, or they make lots of money. I want to hear that story to show that I care and I am interested in them.

Amy Coleman (08:32):

It comes from my heart. I speak from my heart. It's not my brain saying, "Okay, open up your wallet. Give me your money, dude." No, my heart says, "Tell me your story. I want to hear what you want. What can I do for you? Oh, wow. You have an amazing story. You went through a lot of trials and tribulations. Amazing. That's a great idea." Those are the words that I use a lot. And I don't know, I have a lot of people who've told me in the past that I have a very warm personality because of those things. I think that's how that's helped me see the world in a different place.

Chrissy Holm (09:15):

Today's book recommendation is Now, Discover Your Strengths by Donald O. Clifton and Marcus Buckingham. Now in its 20th anniversary edition, Now, Discover Your Strengths come with an access code to the Clifton Strengths Finder. 2.0 Assessment. Led by Don Clifton, the father of strengths based psychology, Gallup created a revolutionary program to help people identify their talents, develop them into strengths, and enjoy consistent, near perfect performance. Clifton Strengths reveals 34 dominant talent themes that you can translate into personal and career success. To develop this assessment, Gallup conducted psychological profiles with more than 2 million individuals to help people around the world focus and perfect these themes. Once you know which of the 34 themes you lead with such as achiever, activator, empathy, futuristic, and strategic, the book will show you how to use your top themes for your own development, for your success as a manager and for your success of your organization.

Chrissy Holm (10:22):

Before we wrap up this episode, I encourage you to ask yourself a few questions. What are some of your strengths and abilities and how does that impact how you see the world? If you're not able to do something, how does this impact how you see things? And how can you build on your strengths and abilities? If you have any thoughts on this episode, suggestions for the show, or want to be a future guest, contact me via my website at That's C-H-R-I-S-S-Y-H-O-L-M. Thanks for listening to another episode of Stirred by Words. This has been your host, Chrissy Holm. Until next time, keep learning new words, always ask questions, and stay curious, my friends.

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