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Words Can Change Your Brain: 12 Conversation Strategies to Build Trust, Resolve Conflict, and Increase Intima cy by [Newberg, Andrew, Waldman, Mark Robert]
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Words Can Change Your Brain: 12 Conversation Strategies to Build Trust, Resolve Conflict, and Increase Intima cy Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 96 customer reviews

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Length: 267 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Details

  • File Size: 1685 KB
  • Print Length: 267 pages
  • Publisher: Plume; Reprint edition (June 14, 2012)
  • Publication Date: June 14, 2012
  • Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0074VTHMA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #37,351 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
WORDS CAN CHANGE YOUR BRAIN

Newberg and Waldman have done it again! Oprah picked their last book as a "Must Read" for 2012, and in this book they've identified 12 brain-based strategies that can surely help - at home or work - to improve communication skills. The technique is called "Compassionate Communication:" you enter a state of deep relaxation and focus, which includes an inner values exercise, then, when you converse with another, they teach you specific techniques involving nonverbal expressions and vocal tones. One strategy creates a "Mona Lisa" smile that causes the listener's brain to neurologically resonate to the speaker to build trust and foster cooperation. I've used many of these techniques and they can be powerful. The book includes a 20 minute training exercise and I've seen people tear up after a few minutes of practice.
Here are some of the highlights of my favorite chapters:

In THE POWER OF WORDS, the authors show how negativity can undermine a dialogue. They discuss the 3:1 positivity ratio that has been proven to improve personal relationships and work productivity.

In THE MANY LANGUAGES OF THE BRAIN, the authors cover cutting edge research involving the evolution of speech. Some words even have specific flavors!

THE LANGUAGE OF CONSCIOUSNESS: This was one of my favorite chapters because it shows how everyday consciousness is governed by a constant flow of inner speech. When you interrupt it, your conversations can become really meaningful.

THE LANGUAGE OF COOPERATION:Apparently it takes about seven seconds to create a state of "neural resonance" between two people, and research even sheds light on how plants communicate with each other.
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Format: Paperback
The material presented in this book is very interesting; I listened to the audio book format and must confess if it weren't because I was listening to it on my commute to work I would probably never have finished it. I am glad I pushed through, because halfway (or towards the end of the book) I find out (spoiler alert) that studies have shown that when you speak slowly and using a monotone voice, the message is carried across "neutrally", the listener will have a chance to absorb what is being said and the message won't feel "aggressive". WOW! That explained why the book was read in a monotone voice speaking very s-l-o-w-l-y that at times had me zone out. The book also states that you should convey your message in 30 seconds or less, more than that and you will lose your audience.

I loved that this book was based on neuroscience. At one point in the book, Mark Robert Waldman explains how when we use words "for" both positive and\or negative exaggeration they generate distrust and disconnect in the listeners... Words like: amazing, excellent, fabulous, fantastic, incredible, marvelous, etc.... Good for me to know... now I need to go through all my reviews and remove all those words and make sure I am not using them in that way in my conversations...

In "Words Can Change Your Brain... " Andrew B. Newberg and Mark Robert Waldman shows us the power we have with our words. It was a very interesting read and while its not an "exciting" subject, the book does have useful "takeaways" to help us communicate more efficiently and positively.

While it was a good book (audio), I feel it was very wordy, I was almost relieved when I finished it. Don't know how to explain it, but it almost felt like it would take a long time for the "point" to be delivered. At times I would space out and "rewind".
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Format: Hardcover
I am writing this review from an organizational perspective, and I hope to be especially helpful to those in organizational leadership roles. Leaders have to do a lot of talking in order to make themselves understood. Or do they? Newburg isn't so sure. She's putting her bet on listening. But this isn't the "shut up and listen" type. Nor is it the active listening promoted by so many therapists. This is a neurologically-based method for providing the optimal listening experience to whoever you are communicating with. This means that their ideas and insights can be maximized, to provide the most useful input possible

For example, the author recommends a 3:1 positive comment to negative comment ratio. This is the same ratio recommended in the groundbreaking Practice of Creativity by George Prince. In fact, a lot of the material in this book is a rehash of that classic material. However, the book certainly builds on older material, and updates it with contemporary research.

The objective is to foster an environment in which a speaker feels free and open to become vulnerable, to take verbal risks, and to make mental and communication connections that they would avoid in a less "safe" environment. So, if you are a leader looking to bring out the best ideas, information and trust in your subordinates, you really ought to check this book out. And, as I mentioned above, I also recommend the much earlier Practice of Creativity.
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Format: Hardcover
Another great book from two of the world's most respected nuero-researchers

Word's Can Change your brain is one of the most insightful and practicable books for improving your day-to-day life.
Why is that? Because we talk a lot - probably too much as the book points out.

Throughout life we hear platitudes about the value of listening more than speaking, but Words Can Change Your Brain drives it home as something you want to do for yourself (assuming you'd like to be smarter, live longer, cultivate positive feelings, have deeper relationships, be more productive, influence people, resolve conflicts, etc.) Further, the book provides you with simple, research backed strategies to effective, perhaps life-transforming, conversation.

If the meaning of life is found in relationships, I can think of no better investment than to study communication; and Word's Can Change Your Brain is the perfect place to start.
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