The Stabiliser and Stress

Today we discuss the Stabiliser and Stress.  In our last few installments we spoke generally about Communication styles in Strength and in Stress. We then went into detail about the Powerful and Direct Communicator and stress, you can read that one here. If you would like to learn about the Influencer and stress then go here. I am continuing to expand on this idea for you so that you may benefit from this information next time you find yourself in a stressful situation.

The Patient and Steady Communicator or Stabiliser is all about Relationship. They crave harmony, run like the clappers from confrontation and just want us all to get along. They show peace and calm, they are slow to speak, seemingly serene and don’t show much emotion. They will often say things like “Whatever you think” and will rarely make a decision. They are always agreeing with the status quo, are really good listeners and as loyal as they come.

The ‘Patient and Steady’ Communicator loves to listen, support and to be consistent. They love a steady and predictable environment, need lots of time to adapt to change and don’t like to rock the boat, or have theirs rocked!!

You may think they could be a push over – but you are wrong! These guys have a spine like steel! They may not say “No” to you face, that is too confrontational but you won’t be able to make them do what they don’t want to do.

This is one of the most frustrating aspects of this style for the more direct outspoken Powerful and Direct Communicators. If they don’t agree they will say “No.” They have no fear of the word No, and do not understand anyone who does. Whereas the ‘Patient and Steady’ style finds the ‘Powerful and Direct’ far too confronting, do to avoid a conflict will agree or just even stay quiet. The ‘Powerful and Direct’ assumes agreement and the ‘Patient and Steady’ does what they were going to do anyways.

Unfortunately, in general the ‘Patient and Steady’ communicators have no idea how frustrating their avoidance of confrontation can be. They do not understand that staying quiet and not saying how you feel is really confusing for everyone else, particularly when you are asked. The ‘Patient and Steady’ just wants everyone to get along peacefully.

They have a real fear around saying ‘No’ and upsetting people. So they avoid it at all costs. What they don’t often get is that when they avoid or procrastinate they are still saying ‘No’ just in a more confusing way.

The ‘ Powerful and Direct’ Communicator is the polar opposite of the ‘Patient and Steady.’ Remember, the ‘ Powerful and Direct’ is all about quick decisions, fast talking, fast walking get results. They love competition, adventure, crave results and need respect. They are natural leaders, and can tend to take over. This works well for the ‘S’ style who does not naturally like to make decisions. It’s all beautiful until there is a difference in opinion.

So, if you are working or living with a gentle and kind ‘S’ then take heart, they are not meaning to be avoidant and stubborn. The ‘Patient and Steady’ Communicator is such a loyal and caring friend. You just need to give them time to feel safe in your friendship so that they can speak up. If you manage or work with someone like this it is extremely important to create an environment where they are feeling safe and courageous enough to speak up.

I live with many ‘Patient and Steady’ styles and they challenge me constantly. Because they are hard to read and can be easily offended by my direct style I need to really be conscious of how I come across.

The Patient and Steady and Stress may be unexpected in terms of the relationship.  Under stress the ‘Patient and Steady’ can become highly avoidant, do things more slowly, procrastinate because they do not wish to cause any issues. They can appear cold and uncaring. But they just don’t show emotions; it is a protective mechanism for them. Under stress they can become even quieter, more avoidant, show even less emotion and seem to shut down.

For example, at work, you have Stewart who is an ‘Patient and Steady’ style who wants relationships to work well, he is loyal, consistent and reliable. He is quiet, sometimes you don’t even know he is in a meeting, he is always the one people go to for a debrief because he is so caring and such a good listener.

Sometimes you may feel confused because you ask Stewart how he feels about an issue in the office and he nods to all you say, doesn’t say much back but his behavior implies that he agrees. Yet you find out at a meeting with your manager later that you are the only one with an issue no one else feels the same way you do.

You are infuriated because you feel hung out to dry. You confront Stewart who listens and still says not much, you ask directly, why didn’t you speak up? You get nothing. Now you feel really unsupported.

One of the best ways to deal with such behavior is to be kind, supportive, ensure you really manage your emotions and ask them how they feel. Actually ask the question “is everything ok? When we spoke earlier I really felt supported by you and that we were on the same page have I misinterpreted?

Then comes the most critical phase. STOP and allow the to answer. Do not pressure them, do not push them to answer but patiently wait. By doing this you are seeing them, you are allowing them to respond in their time, which is slower than the other styles and you need to be completely patient, supportive and non confrontational.

Now this may feel really frustrating but honestly, the stabiliser will appreciate you slowing down and really hearing them. The ‘Patient and Steady’ style needs to feel related too and heard. They are such patient and good listeners they really appreciate the same back. Most people just get frustrated and move on. Doing this will build a stronger connection for you both.

It is also incredibly healthy to acknowledge for your own needs that you are struggling with the avoidance and procrastination. It also needs to be acknowledged that not speaking up is a bad habit of the ‘S”. There are times where they need to build on their courage. It is healthy for people to be able to speak up.

This takes practice, so for now if all you can grasp is please don’t take it personally then do that! Resources are coming that will help you to develop the skills you need to deal with those difficult conversations and situations.

For example, our popular workshop “Becoming and Enlightened Communicator” will soon be available as an online course for you to do in your own time! Exciting times are ahead everyone!!

Until then, be patient with each other. When something is not working look for the answer other than a personal angle. It is usually not about us, I know it’s hard to believe but really it isn’t.

Until next time, Care, Connect and be a Courageous Communicator.  Let’s change the world we live in one conversation at a time.


Kylie Warry



Facing your fear – saying what you need to say.

Many people don’t face their fear and say what they need to say.  Standing up for yourself and saying what you think or feel takes a whole lot of courage! It really does mean you are facing your fears. Some of you have fears of rejection, fears of inadequacy, fears of failure…. I could go on and on.

Saying what you really feel, sharing your inner most thoughts is confronting to say the least. You are putting yourselves on the line. Many of you have probably been brought up in families where this just not what is done. People hold onto feelings, suppress feelings, stifle our opinions, apologise for reacting to something and clam up.

To make things even harder you are not taught how to understand what makes you tick, why you do what you do, why something’s push tour buttons. Then if you needed more to complicate this already tricky situation, you usually end up close to someone who sees the world in the exact opposite way to you. Tricky, to say the least!

I was working with a group of professionals just recently; they have a very entrenched and unhealthy workplace culture. A few brave soldiers are standing up for change and driving it. Whilst there are others, who have been a part of the toxic culture, and are hanging on for dear life. It is quite a difficult situation.

There is so much emotion, people don’t know who it’s safe to be real with and who you need to watch out for. Everyone is in survival mode so communication is so tense and strained. This naturally brings out the worst in people, which just adds to this spiralling downward cycle.

I really had to commend the courage of these few who stood up and spoke of “the elephant in the room.” Their fear is real; some of the most toxic members of this culture are really tight with the management team.

People are afraid to speak up, to say, “This is just not on!” It has inspired me to write about this issue because I know this is not isolated. I have worked in many workplaces where a few people have just been allowed to get away with bad behaviour.

Partly, I believe it is because people are not confident to speak up and have that difficult conversation (hence our signature course “Master the Art of Difficult conversations”). Check it out here.

Another reason is because we don’t understand how we are different and when someone reacts out of stress we don’t understand and take it personally (hence our signature course “The Enlightened Communicator”). Check it out here.

Finally I believe that many managers do not understand know how to deal with issues of performance and tend to put their head in the sand and allow bad behaviour to reign in their teams. Watch this space for another course to teach Managers how to performance manage well.

So my challenge should you choose to accept it is to speak up! Do something. If this is happening in your world and you are struggling, learn about the communication styles, it is a great start. Learn about your strengths and what may push your buttons.

Learn how to understand the style of others in your world so you can better interpret their behaviour and then de personalise what is not personal. Finally, stand up and say what you believe in, draw a line. This is not acceptable. Believe in yourself enough to know that you deserve better treatment.

You are certainly worth it. At the very least if your workplace is so toxic and change is unlikely then find a place that would benefit form your skills and where you can flourish.

Until next time, Care, Connect and be a Courageous Communicator.  Let’s change the world we live in one conversation at a time.


When Opposite Communicators interact

When opposite Communicators interact it can get ugly.  There can be misunderstanding, tension and ultimately conflict.  Today we will look at the Direct and Steady Communicators interacting.

We have discussed the Powerful and Direct Communicator many times however, here is a quick summary for you. The direct styles are after results, they don’t mess around, they are straightforward, task focused and outgoing. They like to make quick decisions, are big picture thinkers and think their way is the ONLY way.  They can come across as aggressive, competitive, sometimes bossy and harsh. However, they get loads done, are goal focused and won’t give in.

The Patient and Steady Communicator is one that is patient, quiet and does not show emotion.  They are people focused and reserved.  These guys are all about relationship and everyone getting along.  They crave harmony and really don’t like confrontation or change.  If you know someone with this style they are the people you go to when you near a good listener and a cup of tea.  They don’t make a fuss are fiercely loyal and have a quiet stubbornness about them.

This style does not care so much for action, results and competition – they are the the mortar between the bricks, holding everyone together. As you can imagine, if you work with this style and don’t understand it, you could be having some frustrations.  These guys are very good at chugging along consistently, at a slow and steady pace.  They may procrastinate because change is scary and they really find saying ‘No’ a challenge.

So what can happen when these two styles come together?  Firstly, they are polar opposites.  They have very little in common, the Powerful and Direct style is all about results and the Patient and Steady style is all about relationships. The “Powerful and Direct” style can be perceived by the “Patient and Steady” style as cold and uncaring.  Patient and Steady Communicators can find the Powerful and Direct Communicator far to confrontational and aggressive initially.  However, because these styles are so opposite you often find that they marry each other.  Amazing hey?  The “Patient and Steady” Style loves the boldness and strength of the “Powerful and Direct” whilst the “Powerful and Direct” communicator loves the relaxed and serene nature of the “Patient and Steady”.

In the workplace, the “Patient and Steady” style can be perceived by the “Powerful and Direct” style as too slow and lacking courage to speak up.  The “Powerful and Direct” is impatient and has no trouble telling anyone what they thin,.  The “Patient and Steady” does not like to rock the boat and can find the ‘D” highly confrontational even bully like.

Can you imagine these two working on a project together? The “Powerful and Direct” can be all about it’s their way or the highway while the “Patient and Steady” has great ideas too, they just are unlikely to speak up in front of the bossy “Powerful and Direct”.  The “Patient and Steady” will agree on the surface, feeling unable to speak up and afterward will do what they were going to do anyway,  This drives the “Powerful and Direct” style bonkers as they don’t understand why the “Patient and Steady” just did not speak up.  After all, they would!

The “Powerful and Direct” would love the patience, go wight he flow nature of the “Patient and Steady” has toward others, rather than potentially offending and scaring people like a strong “Powerful and Direct” can. These two styles can work so well together if they are aware of how they can potentially cause tension and how to bring out the best in others.

For example, the Strong “Powerful and Direct” can be all about results but an aware “Powerful and Direct” will realise that getting results through people is smart. The Strong “Patient and Steady” may be more focused on people and relationships however at some point will need to produce a result and speak up.   This may require standing up for themselves and saying what they think at a risk of offending someone.  The two can work together to get a great result with a motivated and consistent team work.

It all comes down to realising we are all different and that we all have something to offer, something valuable. So next time that Strong “Powerful and Direct” communicator is telling you what to do and is not open to suggestions; a good starting point may be to understand they are all about the result and they don’t realise how offensive their direct style can be.

Next time the Strong “Patient and Steady” is avoiding a difficult conversation or saying “Yes” again when they know they need to say “No,” be patient with them.  Encourage them, their fear of confrontation is mind numbing for them.  They would rather say “Yes” at their own costs than risk offending someone.

If you would like to understand your own Communication style and that of those you work with, check out our workshops and resources at  Understudying your own communication style and how to understand others is such a rewarding and worthwhile investment of your time.

Until next time, Care, Connect and be a Courageous Communicator.  Let’s change the world we live in one conversation at a time.

The Steady, the Analytical and Stress

Did you know that 92% of Australians feel unfulfilled in their jobs?  Much of this may be attributed to stress and feeling disconnected in the workplace.  Continuing our discussion on stress and how it affects each Communication Style today we will look further into the Steady and Analytical Communication Styles.

The Patient and Steady Communicator is the quiet, people focused, consistent team member that loves harmony and for everyone to get along.  They avoid change and conflict like the plague.  When stressed, they will retreat further into themselves and try to pretend nothing is going on.

This style is very difficult to read so most often won’t show the signs of stress until it has been going on for quite a while.  Unfortunately, you won’t get a warning until the volcano blows!!   As you can imagine this is really hard for team members as they have no warning and seeing a usually quiet Patient and Steady style do their block is a sight to behold.

If this happens it is important to remember that the pre cursing event is one of MANY that have lead to this blow up.  This is one of the complications of the “Patient and Steady” letting everything build up until they cannot take any more.   It is very important for the “Patient and Steady” communicator to feel supported after a blow up happens, as they are always willing to support others.  They will appreciate a willing ear and a friendly smile.

If this is you, remember it is ok to ask for help and to say “No” when you need to.  If you are a “Patient and Steady” communicator you will respond to stress by needing to sleep more.  So take the time and allow yourself to do this when you need.

Many Patient and Steady Communicators do well in learning how to be more assertive, particularly when dealing with a more assertive style such as the Powerful and Direct or Playful and Influencing communicator. If this is you or someone you know check out our upcoming course on how to Master the Art of Difficult Conversations, in Sydney this November.

The “Perfect and Conscientious” comes across as highly detailed, organised, wanting perfection and quite task oriented.  When stressed they become even more task focused, they demand perfection and can become quite critical of others.  As you can imagine if your bench mark is perfection this is already a recipe for stress.  So if you notice your “Perfect and Conscientious” style team mate becoming more critical than usual, more controlling, if they seem tense and more anxious than usual it could be a sign that they are under stress.

Don’t take their criticism to heart, it is an outward sign of their inward battle.  Ask them if they need support, offer to help them get a plan together so they can get through whatever is causing them stress too.  If this is you, be kind to yourself, you will usually need some quiet alone time to deal with your hectic inner world.  Make sure you do this so that you can effectively deal with the cause of your stress.

For all of us, awareness of our own stress levels is key.  Realising that the people around us are affected by the way our behaviour and communication changes under stress is important.  I think it funny that when we are under stress, we behave differently toward others, they may not respond well and our stress can increase!  What a vicious and unhelpful cycle!

When you notice your stress increasing the best thing to do is acknowledge it, ask for support or help and get a plan.  Ignoring it is never the answer.  Ensure you allow yourself to do what helps you when stressed whether it be exercising, socialising, sleeping, quiet time or a combination; do what works for you.

I noticed a few years ago when my Husband and I were both stressed at the same time for different reasons.  When he is stressed he likes to socialise and I need a combination of exercise and quiet time.  He was really pushing to go out and it was honestly the last thing I wanted to do.  What did we do?  We compromised.  I said to him that I needed an hour to walk and think on  my own, when I got back I felt so much better and was able to then socialise as he so badly needed.

It is so important to take responsibility for your feelings, be able to share them, acknowledge and respect the needs of others.  In relationships, the whole mind reading thing really doesn’t work!

Next time we will look at a current and real life example of these interactions and how different communicators respond to stress.   Please share this information with friends and loved ones so that all of us can dial back the stress and begin to enjoy life more.

Until next time, Care, Connect and be a Courageous Communicator.  Let’s change the world we live in one conversation at a time.

The Dominant, the Influencer and stress

Each person responds differently to stress, each communication style responds in their own unique way.   Today we will look at how the Dominant and Influencing Communicators respond to stress. There are some common trends though so let’s see which on you relate most too.  This is helpful for you to know because whether you acknowledge it or not, the people around you will notice a change in you when your stress levels rise.

The Powerful and Direct Communicator can already comes across as task oriented, blunt, driven, even bossy.  When stressed they will become even more driven, blunt, decisive, quick thinking and moving.  They will exert even more “control” as their world spins out of control.  They may come across as aggressive which can be quite negative in a workplace.  So if you work with someone like this, your world can get quite difficult when they become stressed.

It is really important not to take their behaviour personally.  Be courageous and ask them if they are ok.  Yes, even these guys need support and would appreciate you asking.  They often have no idea how they come across and don’t understand why their team mates are backing away slowly when they enter the room!  If this is you, you need to acknowledge the stress and then ensure you have helpful strategies to address it.  Things such as exercise will help to burn or your excess adrenaline and allow you to think and gain some calm.

The Playful and Influencing Communicator comes across as, people oriented, the life of the party, they are talkative, fun, colourful and optimistic.  When they become stressed they will talk even more, be even more loud and flighty (if that’s possible).  It may be hard to keep up with them it may seem like they are on something!  Eventually they may become quite short and may even snap which is completely out of character for them.  This can damage work relationships, as they are usually so friendly and willing to chat.

Again, don’t take their behavior personally, ask them if they are ok, and if they need any support.  The “Playful and Influencing” communicator likes to be included in all interactions but if they are either talking too much or becoming snappy they will begin to be shut out; this is like torture for them.   If this is you, take the time to work out what may be causing the stress for you.  Get a plan and get your stress under control.  Things such as socialising are really important for you when you are feeling stress.

Next time we will look at how the Patient and Steady Communicator and Perfectionist and Conscientious Communicators respond to stress. Please share this information with friends and loved ones so that all of us can dial back the stress and begin to enjoy life more.

Until next time, Care, Connect and be a Courageous Communicator.  Let’s change the world we live in one conversation at a time.

When two Powerful and Direct Communicators interact

We have discussed the Powerful and Direct communicator previously however here is a quick summary for you.  The Powerful and Direct communicator is after results, they don’t mess around, they are straight forward, task focused, they like to make decisions, are big picture thinkers and think their way is the ONLY way.  They can come across as aggressive, competitive, sometimes bossy and harsh.

However, they get loads done, are goal focused and won’t give in. I worked recently with a Personal Assistant (PA) who has this strong personality type.  She was a highly efficient PA and loved her job.  However, since starting with a new Boss, a CEO she had really struggled, she felt that she was not appreciated, she felt like she was being micro-managed and not trusted to do her job.

The CEO asked for my assistance because he felt his PA was not the right person for the job.  When we looked closer at the situation what was really going on was that there were two very strong D’s interacting and neither of them were aware of the cause of this tangible tension. The CEO being a naturally strong D felt that he knew exactly what he wanted.  He wanted a PA that he could tell  what to do and when to do it, he didn’t need to show appreciation it was her job right?  He found her difficult at times even argumentative, he did not like it when she did things without him asking her to.

In addition, when she tried to tell him how to do things it drove him mad. Her response to this tension at work was to work harder, as she did so she became so stressed, worked really long hours, without a great result.  Remember D’s are all about results so this caused her immense anxiety and frustration.  The harder she worked the worse things got;  she really did not know what to do.

When we identified that both of these characters had strong Powerful and Direct in their communication style and that their intentions were the same – to do the best job possible and get a great result,  they were able to harness their strengths. The CEO was able to realise he could trust his PA to do a great job, that he did not need to tell her everything, that she could have ownership over some aspects of her work.  That freed him up to get more done and take on more challenges (another thing a strong Powerful and Direct communicator loves).

The PA then felt she has control over some decisions which was what she needed, she felt appreciated and was able to step back and stop putting in fruitless long hours.  She also had to manage her stress which she did by exercising each day (an essential requirement for a stressed Powerful and Direct communicator).

What you’ll usually find when two strong Powerful and Direct communicator come head to head is that they will both try to gain control.  As they do this they become more and more ego-centric, strong willed, bull like and demanding.  Without insight this can continue and the results can be quite ugly.

It is much smarter for these two to work together, work out who controls what, concede in fairness so a win /win can result.  It is a much better way to spend your energy working together for a great result than fighting against each other.  There are enough challenges out there for us all to take on!

If you relate to this situation, perhaps you work with someone who is a Powerful and Direct Communicator, you may have trouble speaking with them. You may feel unable to bring up issues, concerns or feel heard by them.  If this is your experience then you may need to develop some key communication skills.  We are holding a one day workshop just for you in Sydney November this year all about “How to handle difficult conversations and get a good result!”   We will advise of details on the website soon so keep a look out, help is on the way!

Until next time, Happy Communicating!  Why not join me changing the world one conversation at a time?  (Care, Connect and be a Courageous Communicator.  Let’s change the world we live in one conversation at a time.)

Why is communication so difficult at times?

Have you ever tried to explain to someone an issue or concern and they just don’t get it? have you ever been misunderstood? Have you ever tried to support someone only to find you have offended them?  You are not alone.

Communication is the art of “being heard and understood”. Communication is a two way street, you need to not only construct the right message but also for it to be received in the way you intended.  This sounds simple, but believe me it s not.  Why?

Firstly, many of us don’t think before we speak, we just send words out into the either and expect it to work.  We mistakenly think that because we know what we mean then of course everyone else will.  This is not the case at all.  It takes many years and a lot of honesty and trust to get to know someone that well that we get that they mean.  Even then we can still be hurt by the words and actions of others.

Secondly, we have our own intention when we do communicate,which is usually not clear to the receiver.  This was a real struggle for me.  Being such a strong personality when I intended to be gentle I would come across as confrontational.  When I tried to be inspirational I would come across as a bully.  Not my intention at all!  Even worse I did not realise this for a very long time.  People would not tell me how they felt because they were scared of confronting me.

As you can imagine this caused havoc for me personally and professionally.  Thankfully I was able to learn from this so I could improve my ability to communicate and relate with all types of people.  Hence my determinedness to share my experiences with you so you don’t have to struggle anymore.  Learn from my mistakes please!  This allows my struggle to be useful and make a difference in the lives of others.

Next time we will discuss how different communication styles make or communication even more complicated.

Until next time, Care, Connect and be a Courageous Communicator.  Let’s change the world we live in one conversation at a time.