Episode #035: Brain Rules Part 1 with Dr. John Medina

In This Episode of The Buyer’s Mind with Jeff Shore:

Dr. John Medina discusses his book Brain Rules with Jeff.  Rule #4: People don’t pay attention to boring things.  This is a sales skill which will help you with whatever you sell – Don’t give the details before you give the meaning.



Topics we’re going to cover on today’s podcast:

[1:33] Quote of the Day

[2:25] Sales Tip of the Day

[6:01] Brain Rules and Brain Myths

[9:13] Psychology vs Molecular Biology in Brain Science

[12:50] Rule #4: People don’t pay attention to boring things

[18:06] How the brain handles information

[4:32]2 Meaning before details

[31:30] Motivational Summary


More about our guest Dr. John Medina:

JOHN J. MEDINA, a developmental molecular biologist, has a lifelong fascination with how the mind reacts to and organizes information. He is the author of the New York Times bestseller Brain Rules—a provocative book that takes on the way our schools and work environments are designed. He is also the author of Brain Rules for Baby, a must-read for parents and early-childhood educators. Now, in his new book Brain Rules for Aging Well, Medina shares the scientific facts about aging–and the prescription to age well. Medina is an affiliate Professor of Bioengineering at the University of Washington School of Medicine. He lives in Seattle, Washington.


Links from today’s podcast:

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Dr. John Medina

Brain Rules (Updated and Expanded): 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School

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Read Full Transcript

Jeff: All right. Listen to this quote from Ambrose Spears, he once talked about the brain this way. He said, the brain is an apparatus with which we think we think. I love that. So are you using your brain properly? Let’s dive in on today’s episode of The Buyer’s Mind.

Announcer: Welcome to The Buyer’s mind, where we take a closer look, deep inside your customer’s decision making mechanism. To reverse engineer the perfect sales presentation. Now, please welcome your host Jeff Shore.

Jeff: Welcome everyone to The Buyer’s Mind, where we investigate exactly what’s going on in the minds of prospects who are considering a purchase decision. This podcast is all about taking a straw the buyer’s brain or really getting to know our customer so well, that we can understand the way that they think. And there are so much fascinating science out there and so much of the time, it just doesn’t get interpreted in ways that lay people like you and me can get our hands around it. Today you’re gonna learn from a really entertaining and really engaging molecular biologist. Yes I said it. It’s true, you’ll see. An entertaining and engaging molecular biologist. It’s absolutely fascinating. Murph, you’re ready to dive into a little brain anatomy today?

Murphy: I don’t know. It sounds like a pretty heavy topic.

Jeff: It is heavy on the one hand, but I think our guest are gonna find it’s going to make it really fun and approachable. Let me just tell you. Our quote of the day is right along what we’ve already been talking about. The brain is highly structured, but it is also extremely flexible. It’s not a blank slate, but it isn’t written in stone either. I think the idea is that your brain will go where you lead it. And so, we’re gonna try and figure today how to lead it wisely and how to take care of it. As we get into today’s podcast, we wanna let you know that the show is brought to you in part by our good friends over at HomeStreet Bank. This is our show sponsor, it’s also my lender of choice. I’ve used HomeStreet Bank and it was the smoothest transaction that I’ve ever had. Professional, dependable, great rates and service. if you’re a real-estate professional, you’re just not gonna find better people to work with in taking care of your clients. So go to homestreetbank.com, to learn more. That’s homestreetbank.com.

Now, as we think about our show today. And I wanna lead this into the sales tip of the day. We’re gonna be talking a little while to brain expert, John Medina and he says something that’s really, really interesting, and I’m going to claim it as our tip of the day and that is, meaning first, details second. Meaning first, details second. Your customer cannot effectively assimilate 1,000 details and then roll them up into meaning. That’s really hard. So your role as a sales professional is to talk about meaning first. You see, if we talk about meaning before details. Meaning first, details second. We allow our customer context.

The details make more sense when they’re supported by a broader meaning. So for example, let’s suppose I’m selling computers. I might introduce the subject by saying, you’re going to love this computer. Because it’s gonna handle all your daily tasks, but it’s very intuitive in the way it works. You’re gonna find it very easy to figure out. Let me give you some specifics. I mean that’s the way that I would introduce a computer by saying, the key thing you wanna understand is that it can handle everything you wanna handle, but it’s really easy on your brain. It’s really intuitive. That’s the meaning behind the product. Now I can get into details. Or if I’m selling homes I could say, people love this neighborhood because of the tranquility. They feel like they’ve just gotten away from it all. Now, let me tell you a little about the area. And what am I doing? Meaning first, details second. And I want to encourage you to take some time to apply this concept to what you sell. How well do you communicate meaning before you communicate details?

Before we get to our interview, I wanna tell you about an opportunity here and that’s to be involved in our 4:2 Academy. Our 4:2 Formula Academy. This an intensive training program, specifically for real-estate sales professionals. Where we’re using modern selling strategies and skills, just for today’s buyers, just for today’s market. The 4:2 Formula is the core real-estate principle that we talk about at Shore Consulting, but it’s gonna give you several days and actually spread out over the course of an entire quarter, a program that will allow you to just transform your presentation. We’ve put so many people through the 4:2 Formula Academy, always with tremendous results.

You can go to jeffshore.com/events to learn more about the 4:2 Formula Academy. Well, I’m joined now by John Medina, the author of the book “Brain Rules.” An absolutely fascinating book. Now stay with me here, sales and marketing people. He is a developmental, molecular biologist. He specializes in cognitive disorder and even at the molecular level, how your brain is constructed. How it puts together. He talks about how brains develop, how they don’t. But don’t let that scare you, because when you read the book “Brain Rules. Twelve facts about how the brain works,” it’s really, really interesting stuff. And we’re gonna get into that and unpack a little bit today so that we can understand both how our customers, how our consumers brains works, but maybe a little bit about how your brain works as well. So welcome to show john Medina. John, how are you?

John: I’m doing fine. Thank you for having me Jeff.

Jeff: Chiming in from the great North West at this point, this morning.

John: Seattle, Washington. You bet.

Jeff: There you go. I wanna talk about “Brain Rules” and how we get there. But give us just a little bit about your background and how one dives into such a very intensive and almost scary world to the rest of us.

John: Well, let me first congratulate you Jeff for being able to say developmental, molecular biologist and not stumble over the syllables.

Jeff: That’s right. Four cups of coffee this morning.

John: Kudos for it. But that’s exactly what I am. I’m on the faculty of the Department of Bioengineering, at the University of Washington School of Medicine. And my research interests are the genetic, psychiatric disorders. So I spend a long time thinking about how the brain develops in the womb, at the level of the cell and gene. And then what happens years later when things screw up, and you get a psychopathology. So on the basis of that research interest, I wrote “Brain Rules.” Not because it’s a psychiatric book, it’s not at all, but it is the controls. It’s the typical information processing. And the big reason that I wrote those is because I was so tired of hearing the mythologies, about how the brain works and none of us from the neuroscience community subscribe to those. For example Jeff, you may have heard that you only use 10% of your brain. Have you heard that before?

Jeff: I have heard that. Yes.

John: You can take and throw that out buddy. That is nonsense. At a resting state, it’s more like about 40 or 50%. Have you heard that there is a left brain personality and a right brain personality?

Jeff: I’ve heard that as well.

John: We may take and throw that out too. You need both hemispheres of the brain to make a freaking personality. Whatever a personality actually is, which has a very soft definition in my world. So a lot of Brain Rules, I thought of as a vaccine or as a vaccination to tell what we do in the laboratory on a daily basis, with an effort of saying…not only to clean up the mythologies, but the view that we have is so fantastic and there’s so many wonderful things that we know about how the brain works, that it really makes the mythologies kind of peal into nothing, and that in a nutshell is the reason why Brain Rules is out there.

Jeff: But when you think about how the brain works, especially on a molecular level, most of what we know about the brain we’ve learned in the last 10 to 20 years. How do you keep up with what we’re learning about the brain?

John: Well, I don’t get a lot of sleep. You know, this field is changing every six months. There is some tectonic shift and our thinking is occurring in some form of brain science. We’re truly in the middle of a revolution. But to me that is an absolute delight. I haven’t had a boring day in 35 years, Jeff.

Jeff: Yeah, sure.

John: And the reason why is that the field just keeps you so youthful and so young, and when you wake up every morning and you get to think about slot experiments, and then you start thinking about what curiosity drives you to understand X or Y or Z and realize that you can actually get paid for it, I actually think I have the job from heaven. I don’t get tired of it, and it’s certainly not so much that it overwhelms me. I just love what I do.

Jeff: If you’re on the much more on the chemical side of the brain. If you’re much more on the, understanding the brain science, how do you and your types get along with the Daniel Kahneman’s of the world, and those who are much more on the behavioral sciences on the…? They’re working in the psychology department. Do you tag one another’s buildings? Do you pass them in the lunch line? What happens here between those two disciplines?

John: Well, in my field. I don’t have the luxury of living in my standard deviation. So if I screw up, because my behaviors that I’m looking at I have to be able to tag down to a helix, to a snippet of DNA. So I have to say I have a fair amount of rigor lining up. I call it the grump factor. Hopefully I’m a nice guy. But I’m a pretty grumpy scientist. I can’t afford to have certain behavioral comments and then expect that’s gonna say anything about how the brain works. Now having said that, you know, people like Dan Kahneman and others really provide a valuable services. They look at the 40,000 foot view and I think of that a lot like a flashlight. Because that gives us or maybe the spotlight from heaven. Because what they say, you know, has strong…particularly with people that know what they’re doing behaviorally, have strong, statistical relevance and are having a level of truth. And it allows me to design experiments to say, well, okay. If that’s the case, what would it say about a gene if I could identify a behavior?

Jeff: Sure, yeah.

John: Perhaps I can give you an example. Have you seen the movie, “Saving Private Ryan?”

Jeff: I have, yes.

John: Okay. The first 20 minutes of that, it is extremely difficult for most people to watch.

Jeff: Agreed.

John: Mostly because Steven Spielberg is out there, you know, recreating combat the way it really exist at least in the World War II version. Do you remember the character Tom Hanks?

Jeff: Sure.

John: Who is this leader that even in the midst of all of this combat and whatnot, can successfully drive his people to accomplish a given goal and still survive long enough to see it. That is a very powerful example of stress compensatory behavior and we know people that are like that. We can measure stress compensatory behavior. There are people that you wanna go into combat with Jeff, you just do. Because they have great situational awareness, their stress levels are actually fairly low. They’re seeing how everybody else is doing. And that behavior is so well subscribed that a group of researchers were able to ask the question, “Is there a genetic component to it?” So Tom Hanks, you could think of as the Dan Kahneman of the world or other people that are behaviorists. That’s a flashlight, and it allowed us to ask the question, “Could we get at the gene of resiliency?” And you know what Jeff? We found some. There is for example a gene called the NPY peptide.

We know that there are some people out there that when they get into combat situations, or if they’re in the middle of a legal fight or…I would argue, it doesn’t have to be a shooting war to get this. There are people that are under high stress situations that dump a ton of NPY peptide into their system. And that NPY peptide, a straight up molecule peptide is a short-term for protein, small protein. But it’s a protein. A little guy, it’s not huge. But if you can dump a ton of it in as a stress response, you’re gonna turn into Tom Hanks. So there are people we know that are genetically primed to be platoon leaders. They’re genetically primed to be CEOs. I would argue that we are genetically primed to have good management ability, and it was because we first isolated the behavior. So the behavior work is a real friend to people like me, as long as the behaviors are very careful about defining what it is they’re trying to study.

Jeff: Sure, sure. Let’s talk about the book. It’s an amazing book because it is so approachable, and I think that’s on behalf of all of us who simply we’re not going to read a research paper. We’re not gonna get through the abstract of a research paper. We appreciate the idea. We can understand how the brain works on a everyday level. You look at these 12 rules, we don’t have time obviously to go through all of them, but I wanna hear on several of them that are gonna be most pertinent to our audience. So let’s start with rule number four, people don’t pay attention to boring things. So let’s talk about that. Whether that’s attention span issues, or maybe it’s an overactive brain that wants to work faster than the person that they’re talking to, I don’t know. But people don’t pay attention to boring things. Elaborate on that please.

John: Sure. When a piece of information comes into the brain, it has to compete with lots of other pieces of information that are already out there. We think you can only process about .005% consciously, the sensory information that your brain delivers to your conscious awareness. Something we call the attentional spotlight. But we do know when a piece of information comes in, and people that are in sales probably… they know this intuitively, but you can actually show it in the laboratory. When a piece of information comes into the brain, your brain immediately integrates it with six questions and in the following order.

Here’s the six questions. Will it eat me? We pay tons of attention to threat. The brain is the worlds chief survival organ, so it might make sense that that would be the case. But that’s the first question that the brain asks, “Will it eat me?” The second question is related to it. Can I eat it? Turns out the brain is, you know, it’s only 2 to 3% of the body weight. But it consumes 20% of all the energy that you feed it. So it is continuously asking questions about energy resource. So if it’s not gonna eat me, well can I eat it? Can I return favor. Questions number three, this is completely Darwinian, but it is because the goal of Darwinian biology is to project your genes to the next generation. We do that sexually. So the next third question is, “Can I have sex with it?” In fact, it’s actually not sex per se, it’s actually reproductive opportunity. We’re actually looking for the ability to project the gene. So it’s the sexual arousal components of it that are part of this question. Number four is receptivity. Will it have sex with me? Will I have a mutually exchange between those two?

So questions one, two, three and four are immediately interrogated with information that are coming in and we know that. Question number five to me is the most interesting one, because there’s no A priority for it. It just is. Have I seen it before?And question number six is, have I never seen it before? It turns out we’re terrific pattern managers. If we’re only processing .005% of the stuff that’s coming in, we’re immediately asking questions, “Can I make a short-hand out of it?” Which is why, you know, for in terms of attention spans 20 or 30 seconds. For somebody that’s trying to project information say on a television screen, or on an ad of some kind, you don’t have a whole long time to do it because the brain has to make lots of assessment. But I will tell you, marketers have known about this for years. Even though they haven’t put a brain science underneath it. So they know that sweat sells. So if you really wanna… down to even a political persuasion, if you can convince somebody that the whole world is going to hell in a hand basket and here’s why, well, the brain is gonna immediately lock onto it. But because it’s tuned to threat, food, well, you know, after 9:00 O’clock in the evening a lot of restaurants actually project the information onto the screen saying, you know, doesn’t this look tasty? Shouldn’t you have this burger right now, even though it should be served with a defibrillator? You know, you should just go ahead and eat it.

Or scantily clad, and take your pick. Usually it’s women, because it’s a male market driven. So that’s getting increasingly less. Or most interestingly of all, pattern matching. What sells are puppy dogs. And other nostalgia like environments, particularly with baby-boomers as they get older. Why does reminiscence sell? Because reminiscence is all about pattern matching. You’ve seen a puppy before. By golly, look at that. There’s a puppy. I’ve had lots of puppies. I’ve had lots of positive experience with puppies. So you see one on the screen and questions number five and six light up, as if it was the 4th of July.

Jeff: Sure.

John: So all of those are, I would argue are extraordinarily relevant to the business world. But to tell you that there is a neuroscientific under story with that is the whole point of rule number four. People don’t pay attention to boring things and boring is defined as anything that doesn’t address one of those six questions.

Jeff: Interesting. So let me just reset this here just a little bit because you’ve just unpacked a lot. We could spend the rest of our time just on this one pattern here. You were talking about…

John: We can, I’m flexible.

Jeff: No, no. It’s so cool. Well, you were talking about the way that the brain picks up information, and it only picks up information and it only picks up…it picks up the information, but what you’re suggesting is that there’s only a small fraction of the information that kicks into the conscious part of the…the non-conscious part of the brain is in the background, sorting it all out. Saying, I don’t want that. I don’t want that. That’s boring to me. This is not interesting. There’is no threat here. I don’t find this sexy. And so it’s just that small percentage that races into the conscious brain and becomes what we normally think about, when you think about thinking. Right?

John: The proper word would be awareness. And what’s its doing is it’s coming into another cognitive gadget, we call the attentional spotlight. So the ability to attend to…we actually think that’s what emotions are. Emotions are like Post It Notes. You will apply an emotion to a very particular Darwinian priority. So you’ll see a threat and you’ll feel threatened. Whereas if you just took a look at the coma on a PowerPoint slide, it’s not exactly very threatening.

Jeff: It’s true. Yeah.

John: It’s gonna be boring. So, you know, you’re not gonna pay attention to it. But yes, it’s all about competition. A great way to illustrate this is, right now Jeff, do you know where your left big toe is?

Jeff: I do.

John: Don’t move it. Do you know where it is?

Jeff: I do.

John: Of course you do. Why do you know that? Until I directed your attention, your attentional spotlight to it, you weren’t even probably thinking about your left big toe. The reason why you know that is that there are electrical signals that’s called proprioception and there’s other components to it also, that are constantly emanating from the big toe and telling your brain at a very low level of awareness, where you big toe is. Now it turns out the big toe is extremely important. If you don’t have one, you don’t walk very well. So it’s important that your brain knows where it is because if you’re gonna get up from your studio and walk around for a little bit, you know, you’re gonna need to know where that big toe is. But it’s because you’re consciously aware. This is a great example of the tremendous amounts of information that flood into your brain on a per second basis that you know nothing about, but are unbelievably important for your survival.

Jeff: You are looking at… and I want to expand on this whole idea of emotions as Post It Notes, as the attentional spotlight. You suggest that emotional arousal helps the brain learn. And is that because we’re taking what we’ve got here and we’re moving beyond just this is the facts, it is a gentleman with a scowl on his face in a dark alley at night time? Those are all the facts. The emotion is what is not just causing me in that case to respond will it eat me, but it’s the idea of am I learning as I go here not to go down this alley way at night time by myself?

John: That’s right. It’s deeply involved in learning. If you survive the alley way, you’ll remember it for the rest of your life. And it’s simply because one of the things the brain also does is that after it’s responded to a threatening stimulation, it will actually put it into the memory and will then engage questions five and six, pattern matching. If I’ve seen a dark alley before, you know, I remember how a dark alley looked. By golly, I had a bad dark alley experience. I will therefore not go to the dark alley again. Well, that’s pattern matching for sure. But it’s in response to a threat. That stuff by the way is probably the hallmark of PTSD, post-traumatic stress disorder. Because you were in Iraq and there was an IED under a bridge, that have a shadow on it. And you remember that shadow and you store that. When you get back to San Jose or you get back to Lake Tahoe or back to Seattle, you see a bridge. Even though it’s not threatening, you remember the threat. Because you call right back up into awareness as a result of your prior experience. Yep. It’s all about learning. Sometimes that learning is tough, both to ignore and maybe even to deal with it. I would argue the human brain is never built for combat. But it is built for survival, and survival is fully dependent upon your prior experience.

Jeff: Now conversely to that, this probably explains why I suck at math. Because to me there was…I learn through experiencing, and I learn through narrative, I learned through connecting dots. When I look at math, there is no emotional arousal there that helped me to learn. I just always found it so incredibly boring. Have I misapplied the principle here?

John: No, no. You got it. In fact, I start the chapter with the following principle is that the human brain processes meaning, before it processes detail. And meaning is one of those six questions, for sure.

Jeff: Yeah, right. Sure.

John: Here’s a way that you might have gotten a hold of math. We home-schooled some of our children for a period of time. I have a 20-year-old and 17-year-old son. And I got Noah to get really interested in math. In fact, I got him interested in calculus. He’s my youngest. In calculus at a way early age. Simply because he loved Mythbusters and he loved boom-booms. You know what I mean?

Jeff: Yeah, sure.

John: He loved the explosions. And so he was starting to get into history a little bit and so we talked about Napoleon, and I told him that Napoleon was an artillery officer. Noah. And then I said to him, there is this thing called the Battle of Austerlitz. Which was amazing. Because Napoleon, Noah, with Napoleon’s vast artillery experience, could aim his cannon perfectly, and when the cavalry charged over the hill, he just decimated them. I said to Noah, Noah, do you know that we can calculate the instantaneous velocity of that cannonball that’s gonna wipe out the Prussian Cavalry? Did you know that? And he goes, “no, whoa. How can you do that dad?” And I said, “Well, it’s called a first derivative function of calculus. You can have a velocity crew. You can know the instantaneous velocity of that cannonball.” I said, “You know, Noah, there’s something else you can do. We can know the acceleration of that sucker.” Yeah. You know much impact is actually gonna give simply by doing what’s called the second derivative. Now, he didn’t know any of those names and maybe you don’t either Jeff.

Jeff: Yeah.

John: But I had his attention. Because I was giving him the meaning of calculus, before I gave him the details of calculus.

Jeff: Okay. So take that then before we leave our rule number four here. Right now you’re speaking to sales and marketing professionals. They’re front liners. They’re working directly with consumers. How do you apply either of those principals? The idea that emotional arousal helps the brain learn, or the meaning before the details if I’m selling a car, a necklace, or a home or a widget.

John: Yeah. I would argue that you could tell them just a cautionary tale. Make sure you never give the details first. Don’t give the details of what you’re selling. Instead, what the thing does or what the meaning of that particular market segment that you’re going after would most respond to. Can I give you an example real quick?

Jeff: Sure.

John: This is a California example. Nora Ephron. Do you remember Nora Ephron?

Jeff: Sure.

John: From way back when she was…she’s dead now. She was a director. I think she did Sleepless In Seattle and a couple of others. She started out being a journalist, and she had a most interesting experience with the journalist professor, because the professor was trying to tell people how to do the lead of a given story. Does that make sense? You know, if we’re gonna try and figure out how to do. And so what happens is there is a conference that a bunch of teachers were gonna have to go by. The conference…that meant that schools was gonna be closed. So Nora decided to re-believe that and it was like, the details were Ken Peters, the principle of Beverly Hills high school announced today that the entire faculty will travel to Sacramento next Thursday for a colloquium on new teaching methods. Among the speakers will be anthropologist Margret Mead, college president Dr. Meyers. Detail, detail. Right? And she wrote that and her professor came down on her and said, “don’t you dare make that your story.” This is what…because this was being projected to parents. “Nora, this is your story. There will be no school next Thursday. Get your child care in order.” Do you see?

Jeff: Sure.

John: If you can train and show that when you give the details…any people on the sales force, if you try and give the details of the widget that you’re gonna sell, before you give the meaning of that, you will lose market share every time. Because the brain doesn’t process detail before meaning. It processes meaning before detail. And I would also encourage that if the sales force, the people that are selling don’t know the meaning of their product, that they take a day off and figure it out. Particularly related to the, you know, to the market segment that they really wanna project that to. Figure out what is meaningful to that market and then show how, with pattern matching, how their widget addresses that meaning and give that first. So that would be my piece of advise.

Jeff: Well, Murph. Boy, this guy is amazing. I have to tell you. I really appreciate people who are obviously scary smart. There’s no question about it. But they have not only the ability to speak plain English, but the desire to speak plain English. You get the sense that you can get lost in conversations with this guy at a cocktail party, and you’d have a very enjoyable evening.

Murphy: It would be a great time. I wish I could express English as well as he does and I’m not as smart as he is.

Jeff: Yeah, yeah. But he clearly walks both the social side and the details, like the mental side very, very well. It was interesting to hear him just talk a little bit about how the brain works, and to hear his passion. I just was thinking as he was talking about his passion for again molecular biology of the brain, for cognitive disorders, for psychiatrist disorders. He really dives in wholeheartedly to the stuff and it just makes me think of great sales people. There are a lot of sales people who are…I don’t wanna take any away from them., but they’re doing the same thing everyday and they learned what they felt like they needed to learn, and there’s not that strong deep curiosity to want to grow. But I really appreciate sales people who this is their craft and they wanna know everything about it. They feast on it, and they read on it, and they listen to podcast, and they talk to other people. And I love this about John Medina, because you could tell it’s not just curiosity, that would be selling it short. It is a deep passion to understand that. Did you pick that up or was that just me?

Murphy: No, he is, absolutely. He’s deeply passionate about the topic. Which is why even in our pre-conversation we talked about the fact that…this is something the audience didn’t get. Our little pre-conversation was the fact that, you know, as a scientist he felt like there’s an obligation for him as a scientist who’s funded by the public, to be able to express those sentiments and ideas back so people understand what it is we’re doing with the money that is being spent on his science.

Jeff: Yeah. I’m glad you brought that up Murph, because he was very passionate about that. When we were talking before the recording about his obligation and the obligation of all who work on a grant-based system, to make sure that they’re distilling what they learn down to the opportunity for it to be approachable by everybody that’s out there. I love the whole idea, the concept that people don’t pay attention to boring things. And I think the relevance into the sales world is quite obvious and very, very important. But the idea of one thing at a time, keep it interesting. And this whole concept of meaning before details. I just love that, because over and over again we see this in sales environments. Where whether we’re the sales people sometimes, or quite often we’re more attuned to it when we are consumers. Where we’re getting detail, detail. We’re having to wrap that all up into, okay, well what does this mean? But if I understand what it means first, then the details not only make more sense, but I’m going to retain them to a much greater degree. So I love that concept of meaning before details, and I think that the application to you and our audience should be pretty clear. That you should be thinking about those big statements firs, before you get into the details.

And then the idea of the emotional arousal helping the brain learn. The way he put it specifically was the attentional spotlight and the concept of emotions as Post It Notes. So when we attach an emotion to something, what does a Post It Note do? You slap it on a piece of paper and it gives you context for that paper. It draws attention to that paper. So when we take that emotion and we slap it onto whatever it is that we’re trying to share, there’s a marker. There’s a mental marker for our customers and we got to be careful about that, because it’s so easy to get caught into the details and to misquote the meaning and the emotion. And at that point you’re making it nearly impossible for customers to buy.

All right. Well, as we head into the wrap up. I want to encourage you, don’t fear your own emotion. I mean Dr. Medina taught us that emotions serve as mental Post It Notes, and they make things more memorable. You know what’s really interesting to me? Dr. Medina spoke from the emotional part of his brain. He’s an emotional, passionate guy. And that makes it even more memorable for us to study very, very heavy things. Here’s the problem. It is so difficult for a customer to engage emotionally, when you as the sales counselor do not. You will give your customer permission to connect to their emotional self. The best sales people always do that. So stop worrying about how you’re gonna be perceived. Get over yourself. Give your customer permission to connect to their own emotion.

Well, I just want to wrap up the podcast today by encouraging you to hop over to facebook.com/jeffshorecommunity. We post on Facebook everyday. We post articles that we find interesting, inspirational quotes along the way. I might throw a picture from an airport out there from time to time. But go to facebook.com/jeffshorecommunity and be a part of our Facebook fan page. Well, that’s a wrap on our podcast. I hope you enjoyed it. You can find everything you need over at jeffshore.com. But until next time, go out there my friends and change someone’s world.

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About the Author: Jeff Shore

Jeff Shore
Jeff Shore is a highly sought-after sales expert, speaker, author and consultant whose innovative and real-world selling strategies help you to change your mindset and change your world. His latest book, "Closing 2.0," is now available. Learn more at jeffshore.com and follow Jeff on Facebook and LinkedIn.