Body Language

Posted on June 19th, 2012 in Tips and Secrets by John Jensen


I’m sure that most of you have at least heard of the concept of body language.  Body language is the true language of our subconscious mind.  We use our body to communicate feelings, sometimes more than we use words to do so.  Our body language often gets the better of us and communicates things that we would often prefer didn’t get shared.  Most successful individuals are masters of body language.  These leaders learn to manipulate their body to convey a certain message rather than the one they may actually be feeling.  Many politicians hire body language trainers to teach them how to look more competent and more put together.

Understanding our body language is imperative to building strong relationships and building leadership skills.  I am not going to attempt to give you a crash course in body language, as I am still learning many of the tricks to using effective body language!  But I will share with you a documentary that I found on YouTube several days ago that I found to be extremely helpful.  I understand it is a relatively long video, but I strongly encourage that you give it a watch!  There are tips for how to look more competent, how to use your voice more effectively, and how to make other people feel like you are a true leader.


Here is the video:




If there is ever a topic you would like me to write on please feel free to post a comment on one of the posts!


Until Next Time,

John Jensen

“What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say.” –Ralph Waldo Emerson

Laughter is the best medicine

Posted on June 15th, 2012 in Tips and Secrets by John Jensen


One of the things that can really hold someone back is stress. However, it isn’t the stress that holds us back. It is our ability to manage our stress that defines how we will react when we have stress. Too often individuals will let their stress get the better of them and will completely shut down. There are others that can take stress and turn it into positive energy.

This blog post isn’t going to try and give you ways to manager your stress; every person has his or her own way of doing that. This post will give you one of the most important tools necessary to managing stress. This isn’t a tool that will only work for some people; this is a biological tool that can help you manage the stress in your life, as well as assist with your immune system, and basically all parts of your body.

The idea for this blog post came from a Snapple bottle cap fact. The cap told me that the average 6-year-old child laughs 300 times a day. When we think about it that is a lot of laughing! The Snapple cap also told me that the average adult only laughs 15 to 100 times a day. Obviously our sense of humor changes, as we get older. A 6-year-old probably thinks that unfunny things are actually funny. I still don’t understand the enormous gap between 6 and adulthood though. Do our lives become that serious as we enter adulthood that we (potentially) decrease our laughter by such huge margins? I believe that we simply don’t understand the importance of laughing.

When we laugh so much more than just ridiculous noises happen. When we laugh we begin pumping lymph fluid around our body. The convulsion that we experience when we laugh pumps these fluids through our body and helps dispose of waste products from our organs and tissues. Our lymph system is not like our cardiovascular system where the heart pumps blood through our body. It also isn’t like our respiratory system where our lungs pump oxygen into our body and pump Carbon Dioxide out. Our lymph system requires us to move around in order to move lymph fluids around our body.

Laughter also increases the amount of oxygen we take into our body for a short time. Oxygen is a much more powerful element than we commonly think. Most bacteria and parasites die in the presence of oxygen. Even cancer cells are destroyed when exposed to oxygen. The hyperventilating like motions that we experience while laughing are responsible for this quick intake of extra oxygen.

Besides these physical benefits, laughing is also a great way to work out. When you laugh you increase blood circulation, especially to your abdomens. So that 6-pack you are working on? You should add in about 10 minutes of hard laughter and your work out routine should be pretty well rounded. Working out and physical activities release endorphins into your body. Endorphins are your body’s natural pain reliever.
Laughing also releases a lot of chemicals into your brain, including serotonin. Serotonin is a chemical that helps relieve stress in your brain and body. So all that stress you are feeling about work, school, relationships, and whatever else you may be stressed out about can be easily resolved (or at the very least reduced) by sitting down and watching a funny movie, a comedian, sharing funny stories from your past, or pretty much anything that makes you laugh. Your body will thank you for the time you spent laughing.

Ever since reading that Snapple fact, I have made it a priority to spend 1 hour every night finding things to laugh at. Most of the time this can easily be done on YouTube or Netflix. My challenge for you is to sit down for one hour every night and just laugh.

Until Next Time,
John Jensen

“Fortune and humor govern the world.” -Francois De La Rochefoucauld

Wednesday’s Post

Posted on June 13th, 2012 in Tips and Secrets by John Jensen

Hello Leaders!

I’m sorry that I was unable to pump out a blog post for today!  I was attending the Alumni Leadership Day for the UW-Whitewater Foundation.  But I did want to share with you a quote that I really enjoy.  It is from a commencement speech by David McCullough Jr.

I urge you to do whatever you do for no reason other than you love it and believe in its importance.”

My experience today at the Alumni Leadership Day event really proved the importance of this quote.  I will have an actual blog post tomorrow!

Until next time,

John Jensen

“For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.” -Nelson Mandela

The Power of Smiling

Posted on June 5th, 2012 in Tips and Secrets,Uncategorized by John Jensen


I have found from personal experience (and from a considerable amount of research) that one of the most important aspects of becoming a leader is the ability to smile.  Smiling allows you to connect with people and it allows others to connect with you.  A smile can be the difference between securing a job or being passed by for a different candidate.  It can also make all the difference in first impressions.  Even though we always say “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” We can’t help but do so subconsciously.

Most of us know that smiling is important when it comes to impressing people, and anyone who has any experience performing in choir, dance, or any sort of performance has had it drilled into their heads since they first began.  One mistake we commonly make is believing that we are appropriately faking a smile.  A true, genuine smile is called a “Duchenne smile”, named after anatomist Guillaume Duchenne who studied emotional expressions. (Interesting note: Duchenne did most of his tests on severed human heads because he used electrical currents to stimulate muscles.)  Psychologists have found that while there are many types of smiles, the Duchenne smile is the one that genuinely reflects the emotion of happiness or enjoyment.  So what’s the secret?

The secret to producing a Duchenne smile is primarily to be sincere in your emotion to smile.  On those occasions, like an interview or speech you might need a bit more help.  The key is to fully engage your face in the smile.  If I told you to smile right now, you would most likely just create the smile with your mouth.  A Duchenne smile includes raising your cheek muscles to create “crows feet” underneath your eyes.  In a genuine smile your eyes will squint, your cheeks will be pushed up, and all parts of your face will be engaged.

Here are 2 examples of a Duchenne smile (these gentlemen understand the impact of a genuine smile):

If you can master the Duchenne smile you will almost always make a good first impression, or a memorable one when combined with other visual impacts. The worst thing that could happen is you stimulate positive chemicals in your brain and you feel happier.

Keep smiling,




Leadership Is

Posted on February 4th, 2012 in Tips and Secrets,Uncategorized by Jan Bilgen

Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.
John F. Kennedy

Leadership Is Personal

Posted on September 21st, 2011 in Tips and Secrets,Uncategorized by Jan Bilgen

In the end, Leadership Development is ultimately self-development.
It’s pure myth that only a lucky few can ever understand
the intricacies of leadership.
Leadership is not a place, it’s not a gene, and it’s not a secret code
that can’t be deciphered by ordinary people.

The truth is that leadership is an observable set of skills and abilities that are useful whether one is in the executive suite or on the front line, on Wall Street or Main Street, in any campus, community, or corporation.

Meeting the Leadership Challenge is a personal-and a daily challenge-for all of us.

Credit goes to Kouzes & Posner


Posted on August 23rd, 2011 in Tips and Secrets,Uncategorized by Jan Bilgen

Welcome Back Students!

Are you looking to expand your leadership knowledge?

EMERGE is a perfect program for that!

Go to and sign up for one of the sessions.

EMERGE is a 5 week seminar created for individuals who want to learn and practice real world skills to be successful and to lead. Each week the group will learn about 1 of the best practices of effective leaders as researched by Kouzes and Posner’s Leadership Challenge. The sessions will be focused on experiential methods of delivery and interaction of participants and facilitators.

We are offering 4 sessions this semester….
Session I Tuesdays 2pm-3pm starting September 27th & ending October 25th
Session II Tuesdays 5pm-6pm starting September 27th & ending October 25th
Session III Wednesdays 2pm-3pm Starting September 28th & ending October 26th
Session IV Fridays 1pm-2pm Starting September 30th & ending October 28th

A small group of thoughtful people could change the world.
Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has. -Margaret Mead

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