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Tip Sheet

Lean in Hard to Dread and More Tips for February

But still leave time for self-love and optimism! It’s called balance.





MINDSETStay Optimistic

A slowing economy, extreme weather, political polarization. How to stay upbeat even in tumultuous times? Nate Zinsser, director of the performance psychology program at West Point, told Bloomberg one of his favorite strategies is to “Flash a Stop Sign.” “When your mind throws you fear or doubt or worry, visualize an actual stop sign. You want to deliberately cease those thoughts and replace them with optimistic… thoughts. Talk back to the negativity the same way you would talk back to your obnoxious brother when he’s talking garbage,” Zinsser says.

TRAININGIntroduce “Desirable Difficulties”

The training paradox: being challenged results in faster learning, but it also shows us how little we know, which makes us feel ignorant. A recent study of a Harvard humanities class found introducing such challenges upped test scores by 33%, but students thought they were learning more from non-active lectures. The lesson: introduce “desirable difficulties” into your training, despite the likely pushback.

SELLINGAs Easy As 3-2-1

A set of targets for your optical staff from sales pro John Nicolosi, to drive action during what is typically a slower period of the year: 3-2-1 selling: 3 – hand out three business cards a day outside the store; 2 – show your favorite frames at least two times a day; 1 – try for one add-on sale a day.

PRODUCTIVITYLeverage the Dread

One of the ironies of procrastination is that it often involves mildly discomforting tasks, such as doing taxes. In contrast, you don’t indefinitely put off a root canal. You want to get it over with. According to a trio of new studies out of the University of British Columbia, you can use this psychological quirk to your advantage when you find yourself avoiding a task: Tell yourself that it will be horrible, the absolute worst. “The key to getting tasks off your to-do list is to harness the psychological discomfort of dread, which is negative and unpleasant — and therefore a feeling that most people seek to relieve,” noted an article about the finding in FAST COMPANY.


SALESGive Them Space

Give customers and patients a bit of room as they start browsing for a new pair of glasses. The rationale is twofold: So they don’t run for the doors out of fear of being jumped by an overly eager salesperson and to “see what they are drawn to,” says Renee Karnavas, Optical Team Lead at Zionsville Eyecare in Zionsville, IN. “I let the patient get started so I can look at previous orders and benefits … Then I ask if they would like me to choose some. Most are relieved and want our help and expertise,” says Karnavas, who averages an impressive 140 frame sales a month at $293 a pair.

PSYCHOLOGYShare the Self-Love

It’s the month of Valentine’s Day, the perfect time for a reminder on the importance of sharing the love – with yourself: “The biggest life hack is to become your own best friend. Everything is easier when you do,” says mindfulness teacher Cory Muscara. Yep, be kind to yourself.

BUYINGUpgrade Your Business Card

Before your next trade show, get a digital business card made up. You’ll save time, money and trees. Nancy Guinn, the owner of Virginia-based independent petfood chain Dog Krazy told our sister magazine PETS+ that with such a card she can simply tap a new contact’s phone to upload their information via NFC technology, or they can scan the QR code on the back, which can be updated online at any time.

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