Beth Wonson & Company

Weekly Podcast & Blog

Empowering Executives, Emerging Leaders, Teams, & Individuals For Over 20 Years
Don't Take It Personally

How many times during the course of your day do you overhear things, see things, read things and take them personally? Choosing to be curious and to ask questions is the pathway away from drama and chaos. Join Beth as she uncovers why we take things personally and how you can disrupt that tendency. Just proclaiming “I will not take things personally!” isn’t enough to switch us. Instead, Beth explains how taking things personally is a practice, a choice.

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Listen Up!

Hearing what someone said isn’t always enough – you may need to actually listen. Active listening takes a bit more work but will save you time and energy in the long run.

Listen in (or read on) for: an explanation of active listening, three questions you can ask to encourage a deeper conversation, how little of your undivided attention is needed to satisfy others, and how one of my daughters taught me all this when she was just two-and-a-half years old.

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Shut the Dang Door!

“I have an open door policy.” Oh my gosh, those words just make me shudder. Why am I opposed to an open door policy when it’s often pushed as the way to be a “connected leader”? Because an open door policy has the opposite effect. When you have an open door policy, you’re not connected to or present for anything.

Listen in (or read on) for how an open door policy hinders your productivity, robs the people around you of learning opportunities, and nibbles away at your time, plus 5 simple tips for setting things right.

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“You can only call me for three reasons…”

Exhaustion and fatigue are common themes with many of my clients, and I’ve realized they haven’t given themselves permission to set boundaries. In fact, the tendency is quite the opposite. Somewhere along the way, we get the message to give all of our kindness, time, and energy to others and to keep none for ourselves. But nurturing ourselves first is the only sustainable way forward. Listen in for the surprising boundaries that set me free, a few words that create space, and one word that takes it away.

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Start With Strawberries: Lessons and Reflections from New CEO Cara Crye

A special treat: An interview with Cara Crye, new CEO of the Farm Supply Company. Cara began working at Farm Supply fresh out of college and worked her way up through the ranks to follow the prior CEO’s 52-year tenure. If you’re looking to move up within your organization, or even tap into a leadership position in a new organization, you are going to hear some invaluable tips and areas to begin working on so you can increase your self-awareness and become a charismatic, engaging, and successful leader.

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Anger’s Many Disguises

Anger is not a pure emotion, but a mask for painful emotions such as sadness, fear, and disappointment. At the same time, anger can hide behind numbness, defensiveness, or a feeling of power. Anger plays tricks on our ego, distances us from others (and ourselves), and can have a boosting effect as powerful – and as short-lived – as a sugar rush.

Read or listen in for more on anger’s many disguises, and learn how to dissipate your anger by asking yourself a few simple, yet powerful, questions about your situation.

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How to Get Rid of Your Anger

When at work, many of us try to deny anger we’re experiencing because, well, it’s just not appropriate. But through that denial, more anger and resentment are generated, and our suppressed anger has a way of sneaking out when we’re least expecting it. Ultimately, suppressed anger can destroy our working relationships, stall our careers, and have our reputations going in unintended directions.

Listen in to learn three questions you can explore to get rid of your anger and two emotions that hide beneath it.

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The Matter of Trust

In this day and age, information is moving at the speed of light. Circumstances are constantly evolving, creating, and re-creating themselves faster than any of us can keep up. It can leave us feeling left behind, left out, or unheard -- all of which can damage our ego, instill fear or vulnerability, and flip emotional triggers.

The solution is for each of us to reorient our ideas around Trust. Listen in for 6 questions about trusting others, 5 on trusting ourselves, and our 4 choices.

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Six Quick Tips for Living with Ease

Here are six tips for exhausted humans to help you be more effective, particularly in the places where you’re considered the leader – whether that’s a formal title, a role you’ve taken on within family or friendships, or you may simply be the leader of your own life.

You may be pleased to find that all of these techniques ask you to do less – less managing, less acting, less engaging. When you begin to switch over to a place of ease, you will be amazed at how the entire energy shifts in your environment.

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The Lens and The Ladder

We often believe that what we see through the kaleidoscope lens of our experiences is the correct view, although the mirrors we put into our kaleidoscope are merely assumptions or stories we invented based on what we’ve heard, learned, seen, and done. The risk (and the challenge) is when we look at a situation through our unique view and then make decisions, try to give advice, or try to convince others that our personal view is the correct one. Listen in to hear how we leap from the facts to flawed assumptions and into faulty action, and also how to climb back down that Ladder of Inference to what’s both real and true.

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Be Aware of the Witness Marks

Now, more than ever, we need to become more skillful at flourishing within the vortex of change. Be aware of clinging to the witness marks -- indicators of how things were previously used or implemented. When you resist change, you’re likely manifesting disconnection, isolation, and eventual -- and inevitable -- obsolescence and loss. Listen to stories about a client's challenges with change and what I face with my own business.

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Build a Roaring Fire of Confidence and Power

Are you ever afraid you’ll be found out? You know what I’m talking about – that moment when you stop in your tracks and think, “What if they find out I don’t know as much as they think I do? What if they find out I’m not really equipped for this job?”

Well, if your answer is Yes, you’re in good company because most of us suffer from Impostor Syndrome. The Impostor Syndrome’s voice most often rears its ugly head when we...

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Distractions as a Cover-up

My experience in working with this young man taught me far more than I ever taught him. One of the biggest Ahas was how when humans – youth or adults – feel vulnerable about their skillset or abilities, and they are in an environment where they believe it isn’t safe to reveal those deficits and ask for help, they will create a distraction. In the world of work, this distraction is generally drama, chaos, and unhealthy conflict.

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Beth Wonson
Navigating the Holiday Effect

We are entering prime time, the big show, the period just before the Christmas holiday that extends into the new year – a time known for hustle and bustle and joy and, mixed in with it, our stressors, emotional triggers, anxiety, drama, and conflict. And as we’ve all experienced, sometimes it’s a little tough to tell which moment is going to contain which bevy of emotion

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Cognitive Shortcuts

So I have a question for you:

Would you rather go for a leisurely walk on a flat paved path or would you rather bushwhack your way through new and uncharted territory?

For me, the answer depends on the day. It depends on how much energy I have, how much time I have, and what I anticipate the reward might be.

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If You Want to Be a Victim, Finding a Team Is Easy

If You Want to Be a Victim, Finding a Team Is Easy

It’s relatively easy to find a group of people who you resonate with, who you’re comfortable with, who agree with you on a variety of topics. But finding a team that helps you grow and be stronger, that sheds light on places where you may have blind spots? Well, that’s a different topic altogether, and it’s our topic for today.

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