Jackie Kellso

Archive for the ‘self-improvement’ Category

Your Personal Growth Opportunity in the Time of Coronavirus

In anxiety, coronavirus, growth mindset, insight, job loss, jobs, mindfulness, mindset, opportunity, opportunity for change, optimism, personal growth, resilience, self-awareness, self-discovery, self-esteem, self-help, self-improvement, self-preservation, the future, Uncategorized on April 3, 2020 at 6:23 pm

As I sit here at home, and in speaking with many people during this period, it seems that the fear about protecting oneself financially, emotionally, socially, etc., is creeping into the ability to stay motivated, connected, creative and optimistic. We really don’t know when life will return to a semblance of normalcy and when we will be safe being out in the world again.

Fear can block all the good that the mind has to offer. Although there’s no perfect answer that fits everyone, one way that is helping me, as I sit home like most of you, is to view this situation as an opportunity for personal growth.

To ask oneself, “How can I move myself forward in the stillness of this time?” Is really a profound question that can yield some really surprising answers. It might be the time to explore the business idea you have for the company you really want to launch. It might be getting closer to your loved ones. It might be to finally begin writing that book you’ve been pondering for years. It might be changing your eating habits or having the difficult conversations with your partner to remove barriers to your relationship. It might be overcoming fear of technology. It might be the opportunity to look at the fear of stillness itself (as so many of us can’t keep still).

I firmly believe that there’s something good in all of us to emerge; an awareness, an awakening, an initiative — and that is in our control, when so much isn’t. Resilience comes from the acknowledgment that we have an opportunity before us. What does that look like? Self-reflection is a powerful way to move forward in the face of forced stillness. Once we are beyond this time, our insights and mindset shifts, ideas and changes will have transformed us permanently, and will lead us down new paths that might not have otherwise emerged without the benefits of this opportunity.

I recommend a personal growth “to do” list. Here’s an example:

  1. What things have I been meaning to do because I’ve been too busy?
  2. What have I been avoiding that I know would only yield good if I focused on healing it?
  3. Who have I meant to reach out to?
  4. With whom do I have old issues that we need to resolve?
  5. What does this time mean to me – how can I move myself forward?
  6. Why must I always be running around? Why can’t I sit still?
  7. What innovation in my industry (or another industry) do I wish to explore?
  8. What have I always wanted to write about? To learn?

The brain doesn’t like a void and is always searching for a problem to solve. So to both nurture the brain’s need, give it something hearty and positive to chew on. And, if you can, see this time as an opportunity to discover what is accessible in you, yet to be known by you.

Moving forward,


Copyright, PointMaker Communications, Inc., 2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Kellso and PointMaker Communications, Inc., with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


Shed the “Corporate” Persona and Just Be You!

In authentic power, character vs. personality, Connecting, connecting with people, Corporate Persona, diplomacy and tact, humanity, impress, kids, leadership, letting go, person to person dynamics, Reputation, self-image, self-improvement, sharing information, transparency, trust, working relationships on January 10, 2018 at 7:17 pm

It’s now 2:04pm on a Monday.  If I was addressing a classroom of three year-olds and said, “It’s time to act like little, furry, meowing kittens, everyone,” not one kid would say, “Hey, that would make me look silly.”  The kids would just go for it; taking the opportunity to show off their interpretations of kittens, with glee.  There wouldn’t be one child in that room that would be afraid of how he or she was perceived; there wouldn’t be a thought to block their natural sparkle.

On the other hand, it’s now 2:04pm on a Monday and we’re at a company meeting when the boss requires us to communicate what we truly feel on a subject.  We find ourselves falling over our words.  How do I say this without giving myself away?  How do I make the point without being vulnerable to criticism?  How do I share this honestly when it also involves my co-workers?  How do I present my ideas openly without getting slammed for them?

What happened to the three year-old who would act like a kitten if only asked?

We worry that we are at risk of creating the wrong perception because corporate life isn’t kindergarten and it doesn’t encourage the humanity, character, and honesty that are natural to us.  It uses us as job functions and demands a protocol and persona that makes us blend in.  So over time, we become encased in a shell of protection against the forces; we become so withdrawn from our true selves that we don’t take risks to reveal what makes us unique, to speak our minds, or even to be playful!

I say to you that it actually takes more energy to hide than to reveal who we are and that a veneer robs us of our freedom.  It ends up adding to our misery and our stress. The good news is that we can step out of that suit of armor at any time and simply be ourselves.

1. Tell the truth.  Always with kindness and compassion.

2. Dare to say what must be said (diplomatically and tactfully) without condemning others. Back up your point with evidence.

3. Let down your guard.  If you feel that demonstrating an idea in a goofy or frenzied way, do it to dramatize your point.  People will get a kick out of it and your message will be the one that people remember.

5. Look beyond the surface when interacting with others.  See the humanity and realness of your co-workers.  What unique qualities about them were behind a job well done? Recognize their attributes and tell them what you admire about them.

6. Protect yourself.  Don’t go out of your way to feel vulnerable by sharing too much. Rather, give people a a sense of how you feel and what you think by daring not to hide.  It builds trust.

7. Think of yourself as a leader who is transparent.  It’s the key to shedding ‘the persona’ on behalf of the person you are. It creates safety and support for others to follow; it breaks apart the veneer.

By taking this concept under consideration, you will feel a new sense of power and freedom in being authentic.  It can activate your creativity, you can have more fun at work, and might even find yourself purring once in awhile…

Personally yours,


Copyright, PointMaker Communications, Inc., 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Kellso and PointMaker Communications, Inc., with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Why are You so Negative? I’ll Tell You Why, and it’s Not Your Fault.

In brain, brain-based, brain-based coach, brain-based coaching, coping with pressure at work, corporate life, cortisol, dealing with a difficult coworker, disagreements, emotional baggage, emotional brain, executive brain, fight, fight or flight, limbic system, manage stress at work, managing conflict, managing emotions at work, negativity, negativity at work, neural pathways, neuroscience, Norman Vincent Peale, office politics, passive-aggressive, pre-frontal cortex, problem-solve, profesional boundaries, professional behavior, Professional Reputation, self-defensiveness, self-improvement, stress and worry, stress hormones, work-related problems, work-related stress on October 2, 2017 at 3:22 pm

Do you find yourself focusing on how disorganized your manager is, or how your colleague can’t run a meeting, or how your team can’t come up with the right idea, or how disgusted you are by your CEO’s poor communication skills?

Well, if you are criticizing just about everyone and everything, guess what?  You have lost perspective, objectivity and healthy, personal boundaries.  In fact, you are unwittingly creating your own hell and it’s keeping your brain from its executive powers to think, problem-solve and be most effective.

In this state, some of us will bully, become passive-aggressive, withdraw, gossip, cry, or beat the hell out of ourselves and eat five chocolate bars to get a kick of serotonin. You get the idea.  When we are unable to cope, we start moving into old-fashioned self-defense. There’s no resolution in this state, only more frustration and pain.

Being in a constant hypercritical mode doesn’t take that much these days, with so much pressure on us to deliver.  But, there’s usually another factor — unclaimed emotional baggage that we’ve carried into the present day.  Here’s why:  our brains will respond with whatever we give them.  As Norman Vincent Peale said, “Dwelling on negative thoughts is like fertilizing weeds.”  The chronic re-injury to the brain from negative thinking literally changes our brains.

These weeds are neural pathways that have been constructed around negative thinking.  Think of highways and how they connect to one another to move traffic along. In the brain, these are called synapses. When fired-up they will stimulate the release of stress hormones, which set the stage for unwanted reactions of the mind and body. In fact, over time we can see how the stress takes a toll on our health: migraines, depression, chronic fatigue, etc. This is why being negative is not your fault; your brain has been bred for it. The good news is, we can get help from our executive (or thinking) brains.

The key is to recognize the symptoms. Are you waking up and going to sleep (if you’re sleeping, that is) with anger, rage, vitriol, depression, etc? If this is the case, even if you’re not openly complaining, your body language, facial expressions, tone of voice, and attitude are most certainly giving you away.  You’re not hiding from anyone.  So, you’re also negatively impacting your reputation.

Look, this isn’t the moment now to start berating yourself.  It’s the time to take charge of your brain.  The pre-frontal cortex is the thinking brain and can be used to manage the limbic or emotional brain that is controlling your moods. So to get on top of this, it’s important to feed your brain thoughts like, I can’t control other people or outside things so I’m going to accept what is. In other words, I’m going to let it go, surrender, and move on. We have the power to clear out our thoughts about what went wrong during the day and leave room to start with a fresh outlook the next day.  This is the beginning of re-wiring the brain and creating new neural pathways.  The brain has enormous plasticity!

So, take the current work situation and use it wisely.  How is it reinforcing your negative thinking?  Who is triggering you into a self-defensive posture? By examining our current relationships and challenges, we have the opportunity to use our executive brains to keep our histories where they belong — in the past. (This is why I decided to become certified in brain-based coaching; the brain is fascinating, our current experiences are usable, and with focus, we can emerge enlightened.)

Lastly, sleep matters.  The brain cleanses what it has taken in during the day, while we sleep. So, to manage the hamster wheel of obsessive thinking and  make room for a new day, with a fresh start, we need ample sleep.  If not possible nightly, a daily 20 minute nap can do wonders too!

In the end, please don’t blame yourself (or others) for how you feel but do take responsibility for what you do. Go home tonight, leave the challenges of the day behind you, and enjoy your well-deserved rest.  Your brain will love you for it!

Happy thinking,


Copyright, PointMaker Communications, Inc., 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Kellso and PointMaker Communications, Inc., with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Transformation, Mindfulness and other “Woo-Woo”​ Terms Define Successful Talent Development

In authenticity, C-Level Executives, consciousness, enlightenment, leadership, Learning and Development, life skills, life's path, mindfulness, people skills, performance improvement, professional development, professional development coaches and trainers, professional development training, progressive companies, ROI, self-awareness, self-improvement, skill-building, spirituality, talent development, transformation, Uncategorized, Woo-Woo on March 5, 2017 at 4:43 pm

Woo-Woo Terms: Transformation. Mindfulness. Enlightenment. Self-Improvement. Consciousness Shift. Self-awareness. Insight. Empowerment. Authenticity. Inspiration. Courage. Individuality. Perspective. Human potential. Humility. Truth-Seeking. Clarity. Connectivity. Life’s Path. Awakening.

Skill-Building Terms: Increase Sales. Achieve Success. Get Results. Build Leaders. Develop Managers. Improve Team-Work. Cultivate Communication, Presentation, Human Relations, Time-Management, Change Management and Conflict Management Skills, etc.

Corporate professionals all over the world are flocking to places like Esalen, Kripalu and Omega Institutes; showing up to workshops defined by their ‘woo-wooness’. Yet, and understandably, L&D Professionals and C-Level Executives involved in talent development must serve corporate objectives and assign training budgets that will meet the mandates of success and ROI. Still, the list of aforementioned ‘woo-woo’ terms don’t generally get companies to write checks to coaches and trainers. (Yes, there are progressive companies that invest in employee wellness programs, and that is a growing phenomenon, but mainly, no one can quantify ‘woo-woo’ with ROI.)

To help people discover their potential, wake-up to themselves, understand how their brains (and others’ brains) function in ways that help or hinder; make it safe for professionals to hold themselves accountable for their thinking and the way they communicate and lead, those ‘woo-woo’ terms actually mean everything to creating permanent change and performance improvement. They are the underlying keys that create those professional ‘success and ROI’ goals. The reason is that the more someone is accessible to his or her real self, the more he or she can influence others and navigate the dysfunctions and difficulties of corporate life. Not I, nor any person in service to others as a coach and/or trainer, can make people perform up to assessment testing levels without putting the value of the human being before the skill-set. There is nothing superficial about the work to cultivate talent.

Of course, unless individuals being coached want to evolve (while being given practical tools that improve their skills, work and home lives) no method of development, regardless of how it’s worded, will yield lasting results.

As a final thought, I am of the opinion that coaches and trainers who have not pursued their own ‘woo-woo’ journey (and these paths are as unique as are people) have the heart, the clarity, the compassion and the skill to inspire, to challenge and hold their clients accountable on the ascension to that ROI.

Develop Mentally Yours,


Copyright, PointMaker Communications, Inc., 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Kellso and PointMaker Communications, Inc., with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Ask Jackie: How to Present Ideas Worth Spreading

In audiences, body language, building rapport, communicating, communication, connecting with people, delivering a powerful message, drawing in an audience, effective communicating, engaging, interpersonal skills, non-verbal signals, personal power, Preparing a Ted Talk, preparing speeches, presentation skills, Presentation Tips, presenting, public speaking, public speaking coaches, public speaking fear, Public Speaking Tips, self-image, self-improvement, speaking, speech preparation, Ted Speakers, Ted Talk Coaches, Ted Talks, Ted X Speakers, Ted X Talks, transparency, trust on June 11, 2016 at 2:49 pm

Presentation tips for public speakers, presenters and Ted Talkers!  Here I demonstrate the techniques of drawing in an audience, holding their attention and creating a bond so that they will relate to you and embrace your message.

Please share this video with colleagues who would benefit.

Happy speaking,


Frankly My Dear, I Don’t Give a Doubt

In brain-based, brain-based coaching, doubt, emotional brain, foundation, Gone with the Wind, hard-wired thinking, limbic system, neural pathways, Rhett Butler, Scarlett O'Hara, self-improvement, self-preservation, thinking, Uncategorized, uncertainty on August 23, 2015 at 8:07 pm

In “Gone With the Wind,” Rhett Butler walks out on Scarlett O’Hara as she pleads with him, “What shall I do?” He says, of course, “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn.”

So Scarlett, moving her thoughts from her limbic system (or emotional brain) engages her pre-frontal cortex (the thinking part of her brain) to tell herself,  “I can’t think about this now, I’ll go crazy if I do. I’ll think about it tomorrow.” She then reflects on her home, Tara, the home and foundation of her life, and it lifts her spirit.  At the end of “Gone With the Wind,” we don’t worry about Scarlett’s future. We know she’s got enough will and optimism to move forward – with or without Rhett.

I’m now Rhett Butler-ing DOUBT.  And it’s shouting back, “What shall I do?” as I abandon it, my dysfunctional companion. I’m leaving it because I’ve been practicing the brain-based coaching methods on myself that have been helping so many others.

For me, doubt had a stronghold on my thinking. It would say things to me like, “See?  I told you so,” when things went awry.  When plans fell apart.  When life took unexpected and uninvited turns that left me questioning everything.

Doubt lies within a network of neural paths, carved out for self-preservation. It’s a hard-wired energy that is released when something is triggered that tells us to set our sights low and keep from being disappointed.  It protects us from a feared fall from Grace.  Other than that, it doesn’t really exist unless we put faith in it.

So, I say, “Doubt, but I’ll go crazy if I think about you anymore.  I don’t need your protection against what I can’t see.  I don’t need you to prove your point when things don’t go my way.”  Here’s why:  I’ve learned that every experience is good because it builds character; it presents me with options; it brings me lessons that are for my betterment.

As in the movie, Tara is a metaphor for much of what happens in life. It’s a dream where people live under the illusion that they are protected from uncertainty. Change happens. And we see how there is no ‘there’ there except in the heart of its guardian, Scarlett O’Hara. So, too, I’m the guardian of my dream and the foundation of my making.  My Tara is being built not from doubt, but from the lessons, demands of the times, and the impact of these experiences upon me. Doubt will not be taking up residence with me.  Instead, faith is my biggest share-holder and there will always be room for guests who need a vacation from doubt.

Frankly my dears,


Copyright, PointMaker Communications, Inc., 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Kellso and PointMaker Communications, Inc., with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.