Tip of the Month

Welcome to the Nutrition Entrepreneurs Tip of the Month

May is “Better Hearing and Speech” month, so listen up!

“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.”
--Stephen R. Covey

As Registered Dietitian Nutritionists, we spend a lot of time hearing from our patients, clients, customers and key opinion leaders, but do we always understand what they are trying to tell us?  Are we REALLY listening?  Statistically speaking, we spend about 70-80% of our daily life engaged in some form of communication, and about 55% of that time listening.  Since our ears work faster than our mouths, we can listen to about 450 words per minute according to research.  However, how much is actually processed?  No surprise, only about 17-25%.  If you are wondering why you feel like the men in your lives are not listening, research shows that men only use half their brain to listen.  On the other hand, women engage both lobes.

Here are several tips to help improve your listening skills:

  • L = LEARN - Keep an open mind and consider every conversation an opportunity to learn something new, and to engage fully.
  • I = INTEREST - Ditch distractions and give the speaker your full attention.  Make every effort to avoid looking at your phone, watch, or the next person you may be interested in speaking to.
  • S = SHOW - Demonstrate you are listening by acknowledging what the other person is saying; smile, nod, and use positive facial expressions.
  • T = TURN - Patiently wait your turn and make sure not to interrupt or talk over the other person speaking.
  • E = EMPATHIC - Practice reflective listening to improve mutual understanding which will help to provide appropriate responses.
  • N = NOW - Resist the urge to think about what you have to do when you get home like cook dinner, laundry or put the kids to bed.  Instead, focus on the present and the conversation you are engaged in now.

Try incorporating some of these tips into your practice and really listening.  Bonus...you may just notice the men in your lives saying the word “What?” less often!

-Lisa Jones, MA, RDN, LDN, FAND, NE's DPG Delegate

Help Clients Find the Joy in Movement

As Registered Dietitians we know that 80% of Americans do not meet recommended physical activity levels and 45% are not active enough to improve their health. Studies show that health care professionals who prescribe physical activity fail to motivate clients to move more. Many clients look at this well-intentioned prescription as a chore – one that they may get around to if conditions are perfectly aligned.

Dietitians can inspire clients to lead active lives by:

1. Focusing on joyful movement: too many people believe they have to be sporting spandex and pumping iron in a gym for exercise to count – even though they hate doing it. Helping them discover what movement feels good to them and validating their individuality sets them up for success with sustained activity. Encourage them to think outside the box, or gym, and embrace dancing, playing, or hiking for example.
2. Identifying the right “why”: According to Michelle Segar, author of “No Sweat,” helping people discover why they choose to move is the key to sustaining that movement. The “right why” motivates them because it is relevant and meaningful to their daily lives (such as having more energy today).  The “wrong why” leaves them feeling depleted and discouraged especially when the goal they are trying to achieve is a distant and daunting goal (such as losing 50 pounds).
3. Communicating that exercise is not just a means to an end: When exercise is viewed as a vehicle to lose weight or to meet a certain lab value, once that goal is attained, the exercise is forgotten. Helping people shape their lives centered around joyful movement with the right why sets them up for a lifetime of activity, not just as a means to an end.

Maria McConville, MS,RDN,CPT,CWC
Secretary, Nutrition Entrepreneurs

Ask for Help! Mastermind! Collaborate! Celebrate!

We as dietitians all have different talents and abilities ranging from writing, counseling, photography, coaching, video, speaking and media and cooking abilities. Instead of thinking of other FABULOUS dietitians as threats, competition or especially get all up into that icky and stinky compare-itis; why don’t we celebrate our differences, ask for help, mastermind and collaborate!! It’s a fun way to get more out of your work, make new friends and find out that we are all just doing our best!

Ask for Help: My website was recently hacked and I reached out to more than a few dietitians, some I knew well and some I did not. They all had one thing in common: They were killin’ it when it came to their websites, recipe development, blogging and photography – my inquiry went something like this… “HELP!!! I’m not good at this stufffffff!!” What came out of this pathetic cry for help were new friends but also new confidence and (soon) a new website! I am so thankful I swallowed my pride and said I CAN’T DO THIS!! I need help!

Be Kind and Mastermind: A colleague brought up starting a mastermind group and it has been invaluable in my last year of business! I challenge you to ask dietitians you look up to and think about what skills you have to offer the group! You may surprise yourself!
PS: All of us were new at “masterminding”, so we asked for help in starting our group and reached out to other dietitians who had started a mastermind and asked for best practices! Remember, you don’t have to know everything and the NE EML’s is a great place to start!

Don’t Hate, Collaborate: We all have different strengths, instead of Insta-jealousy over those beautiful photos or videos, why not ask those fabulous dietitians if they want to collaborate on a blog post, on social media or some other fun project? You never know where it will lead… A new friendship, new followers, a new experience or all of the above! YAY!

Celebrate the PROS: I am continually impressed with how many dietitians are supporting other dietitians with trainings and services for work in media, writing, videos, photography, web development, branding, PR, starting your own business and more! Just this month I have attended more than one webinar put on by RDN’s – I’m continually enamored and impressed by the depth of knowledge of our profession! You all ROCK! Oh the point… Take advantage of these awesome dietitian-provided resources - Many of them are free but if not, you can feel good knowing you are supporting our profession and gaining new knowledge!

Abigail Dougherty, RDN | Director Elect of Member Services

3 Tips to Expand Your Twitter Reach

Is tweeting something you just do or does it serve a purpose for your brand and business? If you spend time on Twitter but don’t have a brand strategy now’s the time to rethink your position. Think of Twitter as another way to network. Get active on Twitter and expand your reach with these three tips:

1.  Make your tweets ‘pop’ by including photos, bright colors, videos or anything that catches the eye as someone scans their feed. Interesting images and videos speak volumes and help your tweets stand out from the noise.

2. Participate in the NE monthly Twitter chats and other chats too. Engagement is key and participation often brings interest and new followers. Be sure to use the designated hashtag for the chat such as #NEDPG so that your tweets appear in the chat feed.

3. Unlike Instagram, too many hashtags can have a negative effect on followers. Three is about the limit. Vary your hashtags instead of using the same ones over and over. This helps you to reach new audiences who are not familiar with you.

Susan Mitchell, PhD, RDN, LDN, FAND

NE Specialty Chair of Social Media and Technology

What are you doing to maintain a healthy work-life balance?

The holiday season is often busy and stressful, so January is always a great time to take a breath, and regroup. What are you doing to maintain work-life balance? Think about these aspects of your life, and set a few goals early in 2017 to work on for each area.
 
1. Self management: As nutrition experts, we certainly know and understand the important of a healthy diet and regular exercise regime. Of course, we are also human, and sometimes get off track. Be sure to check in with yourself to reinforce how important it is to keep that exercise schedule, and eat well.
 
2. Stress management: What is the cause of your stress and what can you actively do to reduce it? Sometimes taking care of the other issues (self mangement, time management, and allowing yourself some free time) can be the key to managing overall stress. Also, be sure to get some good sleep. 
 
3. Time management: There are lots of ways to keep tab on time. You might consider creating a Monday morning list of goals for the week. Prioritize the “must dos” and sort your work out through the day or week, so that the essential tasks get done on time, and others stay on track. And if you have a home office, set hours, and an “end” to your work day.
 
4. Technology management: Email, social networks, and app notifications, can all be real time-suckers (and mood-changers). Consider scheduling a time-block that you will schedule posts, or check email each day, and then stick to it (perhaps an hour in the morning, and an hour at the end of the workday). Turn off notifications on your phone or laptop while you’re working. Put your phone in “airplane mode” when you are working on a writing deadline, or when you are counseling patients. You can then check on messages and respond during the designated hours you set.
 
5. Fun management! Everyone has a difference parameter for what “work-life-balance” looks like. For me - I think it’s vital to schedule some down time and days off where you can unplug and do things that you enjoy with people you love. Don’t underestimate the importance of fun free time. In this 24/7 world we live in, it’s easy to feel guilty about not being available at all hours, at all times - but don’t. Prioritize your free time as an essential component of your successful, productive life. When you step away from work fully, you return more energized and ready to be engaged. And people will get over not getting a response at 10 pm.
 
Rosanne Rust, RDN
Chair Elect, 2016-2017

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