Falling into the routine of daily life is easy. Same route to the office, same milk in the coffee, same chair in the morning meeting. Routine can negatively impact writing style, speaking style, and vocabulary. Working on new vocabulary words can increase agility and ensure a healthy, active brain.
MONOTONY AND ROUTINE DECREASE YOUR ADAPTABILITY
When you do the same work over and over, you tend to do things in the same way. You probably do most of your daily activities in a set routine, from getting up in the morning to going to bed at night. Your vocabulary, both written and spoken, likely suffers from this monotony as well. Expanding your vocabulary can increase your agility, which will positively impact your leadership style.
Stepping out of your comfort zone is important, every once in a while. When we settle into our routines, we tend to resist change--even good changes! Plus, you aren’t adding any new information to your brain when you simply ‘go through the motions’ day after day.
A WORD A DAY KEEPS THE DOCTOR AWAY
Our brains process vast amounts of information about our environment, and a brain that has more variability in neural states will process and understand information more efficiently. So while expanding your vocabulary might not actually keep the doctor away, it could increase your brain entropy, which in turn, could
Neuroscience can now show us what is happening inside out heads - literally. Imaging techniques can identify and quantify brain signals. A recent study found a positive correlation between intelligence and brain entropy, which defines how many different neural states a person’s brain can access. Using fMRI (functional magnetic resonance imaging), researchers found that higher entropy in some regions of the brain indicated higher intelligence in various performance levels, including
vocabulary (Saxe, 2018).
WHAT CAN I DO TO IMPROVE MY VOCABULARY?
Think of something that you really, REALLY want. Maybe it’s a new jacket, or a new handbag, or a new car, or a new haircut. Think about something that you absolutely covet, like your favorite scarf or morning latte. Now, imagine wanting to learn a new word, just like you want a new car, and imagine valuing a new word just like your latte.
“Your understanding of what you read and hear is, to a very large degree, determined by your vocabulary, so improve your vocabulary daily.”
Zig Ziglar, author and motivational speaker
Fortunately, you can learn a new word a day, a week, or whatever timeline you set for yourself pretty easily. There are apps available, and free websites that can help you find something new.
Your vocabulary is often the first thing that people will learn about you, be it from your writing or how you speak. As a leader, it would behove you to improve your verbosity! In other words, it’s your duty to spice up your vocabulary.
ARE YOU A LEADER WITH AN EXHILARATING VOCABULARY?
Your adaptability says a lot about you as a person, not just as a leader, but also as a parent, friend, and coworker. Learning a few new words to augment how you communicate is not a huge task. But, increasing your adaptability and communication skills can be difficult for some people, that whole stepping out of the comfort zone thing. Leadership models and program such as the can train your brain to be curious about change instead of fearful.
Feeding your brain vocabulary soup may increase your intelligence, and keep your brain agile, adaptable, and ready for action (for tips, click on the link). As a leader, you owe it to yourself and those around you to present the best you, and venturing away from the routine of your daily life to enhance your communication skills can help you achieve this goal.
Saxe GN, Calderone D, Morales LJ. Brain entropy and human intelligence: A resting-state fMRI study. Stamatakis EA, ed. PLoS ONE. 2018;13(2):e0191582. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0191582.