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Just Say Yes

Dr. Ron Alexander sat listening to the record company executives and staff he’d been hired to help. They’d sought him out as a mindfulness expert and corporate consultant to help them improve marketing and sales. One major artist―a “diva” who shall remain unnamed―had followed her first two highly successful records with a third CD that had, so far, failed miserably. What could they do to turn things around?As people made suggestions, Alexander took notes. The word no was used 76 times in response to a proposed plan. Yes―or any other encouraging word? Eleven times. “So over the next few weeks,” he told me, “we focused on what it would be like if, before anyone opened their mouth to respond, they went into a ‘yes state’ to engage what I call the open mind, a state of open possibilities.”Yes Leads to Creativity and Problem SolvingAlexander, the author of Wise Mind, Open Mind, saw a big shift at the record company: From the top down, meetings had far less discord. “No is a constrictor,” he says. Ideas about how to turn the artist around began to flow, and soon, the majority of the responses were yes or “why …

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