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How to Build your Influence Muscles

As human beings we have a remarkable ability to influence and inspire each other, and we get to choose to be influential in an intentional and positive way. 

February 5, 2018, - Download PDF

Tiara International - Influence Muscles Copyright: stylephotographs / 123RF Stock Photo

As human beings we have a remarkable ability to influence and inspire each other, and we get to choose to be influential in an intentional and positive way.

So what does it mean to be influential?

Being influential means that you are conscious about shaping the environment around you and inspiring others to contribute and take actions that fulfill a larger vision. Often, in that type of environment, people feel safe and motivated to participate, learn, take risks, act, and ask for help when needed.

As a leader, you have an opportunity to influence others in a wise, intuitive way that is engaging, inclusive, and empowering. You are like a stone dropped in a pond creating a ripple affect around you with your focus, attention, energy, mood, conversation, actions, and more.

When we are unconsciously influential, we call it Reactive Influence. This is auto-pilot influence, and if we aren’t careful we may be influencing from ego, fear, defensiveness, or anger. When we are reactively influential, we still have an impact and might even still be able to produce some positive results but even if I do, there is often collateral damage.

When we are consciously influential, we call it True Influence. This happens when we are connected to ourselves and our inner sense of inspiration.  In this state, we are able to choose actions that are much more likely to produce the results we desire in an empowering way, even if the choice is controversial in some way.

As leaders, we strive to develop our ability to act from True Influence more and more each day, in each situation.

At Tiara International we have figured out how to build our True Influence muscles, which we call the ACER Method. In this approach you build your competency in Awareness, Choice, Envisioning, Returning.


The first muscle of True Influence is about being aware of whether we are being true or reactive. In particular, we need to:

  • Be compassionately aware of our own response
  • Be kind and non-judgmental toward ourselves
  • Take responsibility for any reactivity


The second muscle of True Influence is about consciously choosing how we desire to influence others. We often get stuck in being irritated or fearful and stop short of clearly choosing the direction we want to go. This is a major pitfall for any leader.


The third muscle of True Influence is about creating a clear and empowering vision. Elite athletes often visualize how they want to perform in an upcoming event. As we develop our capacity for True Influence, it can make a BIG difference to rehearse or visualize ourselves being truly influential.


The fourth muscle is the ability to return back to True Influence. We will get off track. We will be reactive. So this muscle is about kindly returning back to True Influence time and time again. It is about interrupting reactive patterns.

Because of our passion on this topic, we have a Tiara Leadership Intensive where I will be leading an experiential call with Elizabeth Ruske on this topic. It is designed to leave you stronger and more capable in True Influence by the end of the 75-minute dialogue.

See details and register now for this teleclass that is accessible from anywhere. We hope you can join us!

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The Author

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Alison Miller, Ph.D.

Dr. Alison Miller creates collaborative coaching relationships with her clients and helps them identify important life goals. She promotes the personal growth of all her clients by helping them change beliefs and attitudes, take action, engage in new behaviors and live their lives according to their own values.

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