Watch your words, for they become actions.
Watch your actions, for they become habits.
Watch your habits, for they become character.
Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.
I recently had a very unfortunate email exchange with an individual in which a very ugly story evolved in their mind based strictly on assumptions...phantom rules!
Reminder to self (and others), “email (and social media) is NOT the place for a “conversation.” If you feel emotions rising, do not write, ask for face-to-face time. Don’t make assumptions. Don’t nurture your phantom rules. Ask questions. Think about what you have heard not only in words, but tone of voice and body language. And then, ask more questions!
Dr. Albert Mehrabian, Professor Emeritus of Psychology, UCLA created a theory of communications. He found...
- 7% of a message pertains to feelings and attitudes are in the words spoken
- 38% of a message pertaining to feelings and attitudes is in the way the words are spoken
- 55% of a message pertaining to feelings and attitudes is facial expression and body language.
Words alone do not convey nearly the whole story or interpret the meaning in the context of communication. When it comes to the written word especially in email, text and social media, much greater care must be taken since a visual channel does not exist. Thus, effectiveness of communications is greatly reduced.
If you find yourself having a broken, ugly conversation or situation with others, ask yourself, how can I be experienced differently. Check out how this violinist handled an ugly situation at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sqXS9m6aiyk
This broken world needs people to be engaged and connected! Will you be a victim or healer? Will you be a finger-pointer or palms open? Will you tell or will you ask...tell me more!?
QBQ! The Question Behind the Question: What to Really Ask Yourself to Eliminate Blame, Victim Thinking, Complaining and Procrastination by John G. Miller