Indeed, words are so powerful.
The art of effective communication is essential to our wellbeing. It fosters human connections by allowing us to be seen, heard, grow, heal and learn. It is more than just speaking…it is an understanding of what actually is being said and, at times, what is not being said.
Have you ever said, “I’m sorry…I didn’t mean to say that”? I certainly have, and it doesn’t feel good. Usually it’s a result that my intention has not being thought through or I don’t fully understand the impact it will have on another.
Intention vs. Impact
I remember a time when I truly wanted to help my sister by filling up her refrigerator… so I said what I thought I needed to do first – “Hey, I want to clean out your fridge for you.” My sister’s reaction was different than I anticipated. Instead of feeling grateful, my sister confided that she felt a little hurt, wondering… “Does Jean think my fridge is dirty? Does she think I can’t take care of it?” Instead of helping, I had communicated to my sweet sister that perhaps I thought she was not doing a good job. It was the exact opposite of what I wanted to let her know.
I learned following rules of “Compassionate Communication” using the acronym: THINK.
When applied to your communications, it will assist in helping you decide if what you want to communicate is in alignment with your heart, and if it is, then it’s the right thing to say.
5 Questions to Ask Yourself
Is what I’m saying TRUE?
Is what I’m saying HELPFUL?
Is what I’m saying INSPIRING?
Is what I’m saying NECESSARY?
Is what I’m saying KIND?
Say What You Mean, Mean What You Say
You’ll know very quickly in fact, if what you’re communicating will be of benefit or not. It’s like an energetic response in your body that makes you hesitate to sit in a broken chair. Your body knows intuitively that it’s not going to hold you. This is simply like developing a muscle, and the more you practice, the more apt you get at sensing the congruency of the intention and the impact.
Lastly, another point to take into consideration is the timing a message is sent. Here again, you’ll need to be discerning…some issues require immediate attention, and other issues can wait. It’s truly important to express yourself, and feeling into the timing of when to do so can make a huge difference as to how your message is received. Sometimes taking a bit of time from always replying immediately is what’s needed to accurately express what you really want to convey.
By JEAN TREBEK
Jean is a Professional Religious Science Practitioner, Reiki Master and Sound Healer. She grew up on Long Island, NY, and now lives in Los Angeles with her wonderful husband of 29 years, Alex, and has 2 amazing adult children, Matthew and Emily. Jean enjoys taking long walks, watching movies, and traveling. She is very grateful for her family, Willy the dog, friends and good coffee.
Jean Trebek and Sherri D. Keller, LMFT discuss how to live a well lived life by practicing being present, aware and awake.
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