The Conscientious Communicator and Stress

Ahh the Perfect and Conscientious Communicator and Stress, I really relate to this one as this style is my second strongest. In our last few installments we spoke generally about Communication styles in Strength and in stress. We then went into detail about the Direct Communicator and stress, you can read that one here. If you would like to learn about the Playful and Influencer Influencer and stress then go here.

 

Next we examined the Stabilising ‘Patient and Steady’ and stress, if you missed that go here.  Today, we look at the Perfect and Conscientious communicator and stress. The aim of this is to allow you to see just how differently stress affects each style and how they relate to the world around them, particularly when stressed.

The Perfect and Conscientious Communicator needs to be Right. They love organisation, crave perfection, need systems and order, they love neatness and probably seem quite anal, even OCD –ish to some around them. They are often quiet, reserved, great at organising, highly analytical, love details, want to know why, produce high quality work and can appear critical and potentially judgmental of anything below their standards.

The ‘Perfect and Conscientious Communicator’ is all about efficiency, perfection, detail and doing tasks as well and as thoroughly possible. They love detail, checklists, order, stationary, high quality, they are not too talkative and do not wish to stand out.

Unfortunately, in general the ‘Perfect and Conscientious’ communicators have no idea how they come across. They do not understand that some people can find them critical, boring, judgmental and perfectionistic.

The ‘Perfect and Conscientious’ Communicator is the polar opposite of the ‘Playful and Influencing.’ Remember, the ‘I’ is all about fun, laughter, disorder, bright colours. They are outspoken, loud and want to be the centre of attention. They do not pay attention to detail, that is boring. Who wants to let accuracy get in the way of a good story?

So, if you are working or living with a ‘Perfect and Conscientious Communicator’ then take heart, they are not meaning to be rude if they are critical, redo your chores, correct your spelling, correct your stats etc. They honestly cannot help themselves.

I remember as a small child making comments about my Mums writing and spelling. Little did I know she hadn’t finished school. She never told me that until I was older. When I realised later how I must have hurt her I really felt small and mean. She however, never let it show that it bothered her. What a Mum hey!

The ‘Perfect and Conscientious Communicator’ Communicator is also highly pessimistic so may get carried away with what could go wrong with a project or idea. However, it is good to balance the optimism with healthy pessimism and risk so that a good outcome and balance is struck. . If you manage or work with someone like this it is extremely important to understand where they are coming from and remember that any criticism or judgment is not personal.

I am a strong ‘Perfect and Conscientious Communicator’ and have battled perfectionism most of my life. It is exhausting battling the constant to do list in my head, the level I expect from myself and then trying to balance this with my sometimes ridiculous expectations of others. My enlightened self has good days with this, however when stressed I quickly revert back to critical Kylie and the wear rages in my head.

Under stress these attributes for the ‘Perfect and Conscientious Communicator’ become magnified, they tend to criticise more and get really bogged down in the detail. Sometimes to the point where progress stops and procrastination sets in because a decision that is not perfect is just not good enough.

For example, at work, you have Brian who is a ‘Perfect and Conscientious Communicator’ style who wants to be right, and sees the risk and down side to most things. He attends every meeting early with his binder and notebook. He has the last 3 months worth of minutes at this disposal and ahs done everything he said he would.

He can tell you in 3 seconds what you haven’t done and why your idea won’t work with the numbers to back it up. His desk is perfection with everything on it lined up perpendicular.

Sometimes when speaking with Brian, you get frustrated as you get bogged down in the detail. You may avoid some discussions because you feel it will be shot down in flames with all of the reasons why not. None of this is personal at all; he really wants to be helpful with all of this information.

Under stress, he gets even worse, more critical, more detailed; you may even feel hurt and ignored by his remarks and judgments. Whilst this is not ok, I am explaining this to you for your benefit. By understanding this you will be able to get through this stressful time because you wont take it personally.

One of the best ways to deal with such behaviour is to accept Brian for who he is and what his intentions are. He is not meaning to be rude he truly wants to help as correctness is next to Godliness. So be respectful, thank him for his efforts and acknowledge all the work he has done. By doing this you are seeing them, you are appreciating all of their effort.

For example Brian says to, “the report you gave me had to be tidied up, the figures were incorrect and I corrected a few grammatical errors, now it looks great?” As you begin to feel hurt by this remember their bottom line is perfection, how hard must it be to live there?

You could consider saying with patience and respect “Brian thanks so much for all of your hard work. I am so glad I have you to ensure that we get the best end result, seriously, with my ideas and your detail what a great team we make?”

You may not feel like saying this, you may be really annoyed that you have been corrected, but I promise this will build a bridge not cause more tension. More tension means more stress, means more criticism and so the cycle goes.  Most people just get frustrated, offended and move on. Doing this builds a stronger connection for you both.

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

 

 

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

 

 

The Influencer and Stress

Today we will discuss the Playful and Influencing and Stress.  In a recent installment we spoke generally about Communication styles in Strength and in stress ( if you missed it click here). We then went into detail about the Powerful and Direct Communicator and stress, you can read that one 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, with either yourself or another stress head!

The Playful and Influencing Communicator is all about Recognition. They want to be liked and to be the centre of attention. They show warmth, they are fun and overly talkative. They will often say things like “I have an idea!” but will rarely follow through. They are always making jokes and trying to make someone laugh.

The ‘Playful and Influencing’ Communicator loves to talk, to have fun, to entertain. They are often very charismatic and love colours , anything to stand out!! They laugh loud and from their toes!

Unfortunately, in general the ‘Playful and Influencing’ communicators have no idea how they come across. Or they believe that regardless they are so lovely so how could they be difficult? They do not understand that some people can find them overbearing or even rude if they talk too much. The ‘I’ juts wants to be liked.

The ‘Playful and Influencing’ Communicator is the the polar opposite of the ‘Perfect and Conscientious’ Communicator. Remember, the ‘Perfect and Conscientious’ is all about efficiency, perfection, detail and doing tasks as well and as thoroughly possible. They love detail, checklists, order, high quality, they are not too talkative and do not wish to stand out.

So, if you are working or living with a ‘Playful and Influencing’ then take heart, they are not meaning to be rude if they talk too much they just want to be heard and liked. The ‘Playful and Influencing’ Communicator is also highly optimistic so may get carried away with an idea or put their hand up for a project. However, as soon as the excitement wears off so does their energy and progress. If you manage or work with someone like this it is extremely important to keep them accountable.

I am married to an ‘Playful and Influencing’ and he is the colour in my world. His energy is amazing, he is always optimistic and full of ideas. Sometimes he gets a bit excited with how much can be squeezed into a 24 hour period, but he is so much fun.  One of  the keys to me being able to love him and fully appreciate who he is has been understanding.  This is also a two way street.  He has also taken the time to understand me.

Under stress the attributes of the Influencer become magnified. The ‘Playful and Influencing’ tends to speak more and listen less, they will talk purely for the sake of it and it is all about them craving the recognition. They can appear very selfish and egotistical. But they just want to be liked and recognised for who they are. Under stress they can become even more flighty and zip about like a fly at a window.

For example, at work, their is Lilly who is an “Playful and Influencing” style who wants recognition, and sees the good and fun side to everything. She is talkative, funny, speaks fast, speaks a lot, seems flippant some times and you sometimes wonder how to get a word in edgewise. Sometimes you may feel like you try to share some of your stories BUT they get lost in theirs. They always have another story, a better, more hilarious story. Eventually you stop trying to share.

Sometimes when speaking with Lilly, you see her glaze over as she becomes ‘bored’ and moves onto a more interesting topic or person. This hurts you, but she seems oblivious. The truth is she is. None of this is personal at all; she really wants you to like her, to think she is funny and entertaining.

Under stress, she gets even worse, more talkative, more self focused, you may even feel hurt and ignored by her behavior. Whilst this is not ok, I am explaining this to you for your benefit. By understanding this you will be able to get through this stressful time because you wont take it personally.

One of the best ways to deal with such behavior is to be ‘kind’ right back. Not rude, don’t shut them out or ignore them but actually ask the question “is everything ok? You seem distracted today, I’ve tried to talk to you but you aren’t hearing me. By doing this you are seeing them, you are recognising them.

For example Lilly says to you fast and fun, “how was your weekend?” As you begin to answer, she jumps right on over the top of you and tells you all about hers.

You could consider saying with patience and care “Lilly, are you ok? you seem distracted today. You asked me about my weekend and I’d love to share but I feel like you aren’t listening to me, is everything all right?”

Now this may be freaking you out right now but honestly, the influencer will appreciate you noticing. The ‘I’ style needs to feel recognised and heard and will really appreciate you noticing. Most people just get frustrated and move on. Doing this builds a stronger connection for you both.

It is also incredibly healthy to acknowledge for your own needs that you are not enjoying this one-way conversation. Healthy conversations need to be 2-way.

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

 

The Powerful and Direct Communicator and stress

How do you best deal with a stressed Powerful and Direct Communicator? In our last installment we spoke generally about Communication styles in Strength and in stress, if you missed it click here. It resonated with many of you so I am expanding in this idea for you so that you may benefit form this information next time you find yourself in a stressful situation.

We will begin with the Dominant or Powerful and Direct Communicator who is all about Results. They need big picture, bullet points and control. They are competitive adventuresome and avoid details. They show anger, make quick decisions are usually very impatient and talk loud and fast. They say things like, “give it to me now,” they will tap their foot with impatience if something is too slow for them and they walk with purpose.

Unfortunately in general the ‘Powerful and Direct” communicators have no idea how they come across. They do not understand that even on a good day their authoritative tone can strip paint. Honestly, take it from me I was a very unaware ‘Powerful and Direct’ at one time.

I still get help when trying to be gentle in certain situations because my idea of gentle is very different from the ‘Patienta and Steady’ Style for example. They are the polar opposite of the ‘Powerful and Direct.’ Remember, the ‘Powerful and Direct’ is all about efficiency and doing tasks as well and as quickly possible, they like short cuts, they often forget about the people aspect. They wouldn’t necessarily be offended and forget that others would.

So, I implore you, if you are working or living with a ‘Powerful and Direct’ then take heart, and please don’t take this personally because it really isn’t. They truly don’t get it, which is why Teamology exists in part. This lesson for me was a very personal and painful one.

I had no idea how harsh I could come across at times. I had no ideas that teammates, people I managed and certain family members would avoid me because they thought I was scary, heartless or had some type of God complex. Things could not have been further from the truth.

Like all of us, the ‘Powerful and Direct’ communicator just wants to be appreciated for who they are and to do their best. The way they go about it is usually what causes issues. In good times they at best can be seen as competitive, loud, bossy, direct, goal focused, pushy and confrontational.  However, if you need something done, they will do it.  If you want a decision made, they will make it.  If you need a project completed they will get it done.  They finish whatever they start.

Under stress these attributes become magnified, they tend to speak less and ‘bark orders’, phrases like “just do it” and “it’s not my problem” and “suck it up princess, tell someone who cares” will often be heard. They can appear very cold and removed. Don’t ask for sympathy from them you will not get it.

For example, at work, you have Bill who is a “Powerful and Direct” style who wants results, and will stop at nothing to get them, he is competitive, loud, speaks fast, seems aggressive and you know he means business. Sometimes you may feel like if you get in his way he will likely mow you down.

Under stress, he gets even worse, more inpatient, more task focused, you may even feel bullied by his behavior. Whilst this is not ok, I am explaining this to you for your benefit. By understanding this you will be able to get through this stressful time because you wont take it personally.

One of the best ways to deal with such behavior is to be ‘Direct’ right back. Not rude, but direct and respectful.

For example Bill says to you in a very sharp tone, “this is just not good enough fix it and fix it now!”

You could consider saying with respect “Bill, I disagree, this meets the brief as discussed, if the brief has changed then we can discuss that. However, I can see you are under pressure, your tone sounds rude to me and I do not appreciate it. I am willing to go over how to improve this but only when you are ready to speak with me respectfully.”

Now this may be freaking you out right now but honestly, direct understands direct. The ‘D’ style needs to feel respected and will only respect you when you stand up for yourself and ask to be treated with respect.

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 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.

 

Who gets your best?

Can I ask you a question? Who gets your best? We live in a funny old world that can sometimes have us with our priorities all the wrong way about.

If you stop and think about it who does get your best?

Is it your loved ones or is it your boss or colleagues at work?  Is it your hungry for attention child / partner or a client that causes your unending trouble.  Is it your loving and forever friends or a business you are working to get off the ground or out of a hole?  It’s really worthwhile taking time to consider this.

Most of you if you were asked why do you work, there would be at some theme around the necessity to work so you can earn a living and provide for your families.  Am I right?

If you are one of the lucky ones you love what you do, that is truly a bonus!  But, how many times have you found yourself in the situation where life and work just gets crazy and takes over?

You drag your sorry butt in the door after a big day, you bark at your partner or spouse because they want a piece of you, you yell at your kids as they ask for a piece of you and you look for the wine glass to be full. Can anyone relate?

I have felt like this many times throughout my career and I love what I do. However, without careful management and dedication to keeping you eyes on things the balance beam can slip into unhealthy really quickly.

I heard a seminar by a very wise man recently and he spoke about keeping some space before our boundary so that when we get home we have energy and time for those we love the most. If we spend everything we have at work then we come home empty and harassed. We have nothing left to give.

Then we end up giving our worst to the ones we love the most.  Look, if you are honest we have all done this at one time or another. If you can’t relate then you are on the wrong blog seriously.  Perhaps go find angels anonymous or something!  Or come and teach me how you do it, because I find it a continual juggle to get the balance right.

So how do we keep the space and ensure we have enough when we get home? I believe it is a combination of things. Here are a few of my ideas;

  • Knowing yourself well enough to know when you are becoming overwhelmed.  Then ask for help!
  • Being able to have healthy boundaries at work so that you don’t allow your work to dominate your life all of the time.
  • Knowing what fills your tank so that you are giving back to yourself, this is your responsibility not someone else’s.
  • Ensuring that you fill your own tank with activities that bring you a sense of joy and fulfillment.
  • Being able to just “be” even if it is for a short time.
  • Keeping things in a healthy perspective.
  • Setting goals for yourself and with your family (if you don’t know where you are headed you will never get to where you want to be).
  • In coming articles we will cover some of these points in more detail because I really believe this is important stiff to get right in your lives.  It is sad when you find yourself giving your all to people who don’t matter & leaving nothing in your tank for the people who do matter most.  I encourage you to take the time to check in and see where you are at. You and your relationships are worth it.

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

 

 

Top 5 Communication Mistakes #5

The Final Communication Mistake;

5: Not knowing Your Communication

Strengths

We live in a critical world where we all know far too well what we are not good at.  We are told from the moment we are born, you are not good at this, you need to improve that, don’t even try that, it is not a talent of yours.  So what are your strengths – what strengthens you?

We all have strengths in communication – some of us are great at seeing the big picture.  Some are wonderful and charming influencers, some are amazing and patient listeners and others are able to see the detail and analyse information.  Either way we all have strengths.  The problem is, is that many of you don’t know your strengths.  We actually don’t even realise the truth about what strengths are.  We have been fooled into thinking that a strength is something we are good at.  BUT NO!  A strength is something that strengthens you, a weakness is something that drains you.  You may be wonderful at balancing the books but you may absolutely despise it.  That is not a strength!!

When you know your strengths, you know what works for you, you realise that we are all fundamentally different, you close the gap and minimize the misinterpretations, you find common ground and you think before you speak VOILA you have GREAT CONNECTION.

It still confounds me that after completing a Psychology degree, that I was not taught this stuff. Yes we learned active listening and reflective questioning etc but not about Communication styles, differences, strengths etc. No! To learn that I had to seek it out so I have made it my mission to make it easier for any fellow travellers out there that frequently wonder, “Why is it so hard?” Or, “How can we do it better?”  If you’d like to see how the different communication styles work here is a free download on your Communication strengths.

This is by no means an accurate assessment of your Communication strengths but is a greta way for you to begin to understand your strengths and also the strengths of others in your world.

Thanks for joining us to examining the top 5 communication mistakes we make everyday. If you have found this helpful please share it with someone who would benefit.

For tips, free resources and information on our upcoming Master class “The Art Of Difficult Conversations” check out our website at www.teamology.com.au

 

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

 

Top 5 Communication Mistakes #4

The fourth of the top 5 mistakes is;

Not understanding that as Communicators we are different!

Unfortunately, the source of many of our communication problems is the gap!  I see the world one way and receive information one way, and you do it another way.  Its all ok just different.

Most of us automatically assume that everyone sees the world as you see it.  This is at such a subconscious level you won’t even realise that you are doing it.  We don’t know why someone dislikes our new hairstyle, or why someone might not like our colour scheme.  So, if you are a bottom line kind of person who does not fluff about at all, when you come into contact with a warm fuzzy person who could think of nothing better than shooting the breeze all day you may certainly go nuts.

You are different; you have different agendas, different needs, different likes and different ways of doing things.  Neither is right or wrong they are just different.

If you are a person who is quick to anger, you are likely quick to recover and move on.  However, if you are dealing with a person who is slower to anger, who takes on more, for a very long time….. When they finally get to boiling point (and they will!) they will take a long time to recover also.  Neither is right or wrong just different.  Understanding this fundamental principle of communication will make all of the difference – we are different, we have different needs and we communicate them – you guessed it – DIFFERENTLY!

Just being aware of this goes such a long way to bridging the gap.  When someone says or does something we don’t understand, instead of taking it personally or getting upset we are able to say, ok, so they see and do things differently to me.  Thats ok.  Then with a child like curiosity seek to understand it.

Next time we will look at the final mistake of the top 5 communication mistakes made everyday. If you have found this helpful please share it with someone who would benefit.

For tips, free resources and information on our upcoming Master class “The Art Of Difficult Conversations”  or check out our website at www.teamology.com.au

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

What are The Top 5 Communication Mistakes? # 1

What are the top 5 communication mistakes made every day?  Do you make any of these? They are so common, but many are not game to admit it.

When you work on a daily basis with teams and businesses that are struggling with communication, you see a lot!   It is extremely rewarding to see things turn around.  One of my favourite things is when you observe people really connecting, once they know how.

Today, lets begin a conversation about the most common mistakes we make everyday.  Let’s discuss the first of 5 most common mistakes that we see people make in communication every day.  Read on, you may identify with some of this information.

1: Speaking without or before thinking

When you speak before you think it can be disastrous!  I don’t know about you, but much of what goes on in my head is not for public viewing. I can be hard, critical, judgmental, stubborn, and that’s all before breakfast!  If you can slow down and think before you speak, you have time to be clear on what your intention is.

Good question, what is your intention?

Most of the time we don’t even take the time to work this out. Is it to teach, to share, to connect or to impose?   When you aren’t clear of your intention, how can your listener be clear?   As a young Manager I had a team member who was beginning to make a habit of being late to team meetings.  My communication style automatically interprets this as disrespect to me and to the team – that our “important” meetings were not a priority for her.  One morning she arrived late and disorganised again.  I knew I needed to address it.  Fortunately, I had the intuition to ask her what was going on before I “tore strips off her for seemingly disrespecting me and the team”.

I asked what was going on and she quickly and unexpectedly burst into tears as she divulged that her marriage was breaking apart and she was not coping at all.  WOW!  Not on my radar at all! How would I have felt if I had given a serve only to find out my ASSUMPTION of the INTENTION (ie disrespect and lack of priority) was nowhere near the reality?  Her life was in tatters and she was only just hanging on, she certainly did not need me adding to the pressure.

Thankfully I and asked a question “How are you doing?”  Instead of “Why are you always late to meetings!  You are being so disrespectful!”

Can you imagine how this conversation may have turned out had I “stated” rather than “asked.”  This is a really key tip! Ask more questions so you know what issue you’re dealing with.  Drop the assumptions, get clear on your intent and think before you speak.

Next time we will look at the second of the top 5 communication mistakes made everyday. If you have found this helpful please share it with someone who would benefit.

For tips, free resources and information on our upcoming Master class “The Art Of Difficult Conversations” check out our website at www.teamology.com.au

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

 

Ever Avoided a Difficult Conversation?

Have you ever avoided a difficult conversation, put something off, hoped in vain things would improve and they haven’t?  Perhaps then you may have found yourself stuck thinking how do I bring it up now, its been so long!

I was spending some time recently with a lovely person who was speaking about a relationship they were in. They were explaining that they felt taken for granted, that the partner no longer helped out as they had in the past and in fact had laid even more expectation onto them.

I listened patiently for a long while hearing many examples of how this person had been slowly and surely taken for granted and swallowed up by the pressure they now felt to complete all of these “responsibilities.

The weight that they fell upon their shoulders was tangible. Eventually I asked gently, “Have you spoken to them, do they know how you feel?” The response was immediate, “Oh No I couldn’t possibly I am not a fighter.”

 I probed again, “Why do you say fight? I asked if you had told them how you feel.”

They were now perplexed, they were not able to see this conversation going any other way than a huge fight. Now why is this?

One reason is resentment. This conversation should have ideally occurred many many months earlier when things started to change for the worse. But it did not. The person perhaps felt that things would improve, or that they just did not want to rock the boat, after all it was only a small change. In short they avoided it.

As time progressed and things in the relationship declined as they tend to do, the pressure began to increase and along with it the growing resentment. As resentment grows so do very powerful and negative emotions. We begin to tell ourselves all sorts of stories such as “They don’t care about me”, “I mean nothing to them”, etc etc

These stories then start to become your truth and if you are not careful they strongly affect how you relate to the other person. When in truth the other party may have no idea how you really feel and how much the change has negatively affected you.

As resentment and avoidance grows you begin to catastrophise and imagine this huge fight because it would have to be a huge fight because you feel so angry. In fact you are like a volcano ready to erupt.

In truth, what has happened is that your partner has relaxed a little too much. We are all guilty of this at times and need a little correction from our loved ones. Resentment, worry and anxiety are not the only negatives that come from avoidance. All this from a conversation you put off to the point that it has now become a difficult conversation, only because emotionally you have so much to say.

My encouragement, speak sooner, with love and respect. Ask more than assume such as “ You used to help me with dinner but you’ve stopped why is that? Are you Ok?” This is much more effective than turning into a ranting lunatic 12 months down the track who is screaming toxically at their partner spewing up every thing wrong they have ever done.

If you struggle with speaking up, with raising issues, with putting in boundaries for yourself you are not alone!   You can learn some really simple and powerful strategies here at our upcoming Master Class in November 2014  (“The Art of Difficult Conversations).  This Masterclass will empower you to be able to deal more effectively with such situations both at work and personally.

Here is the link https://teamology.com.au/courses/madc/ if you are keen to make this positive change in your life. Don’t put it off any longer; you deserve the freedom that speaking up for yourself brings.

 

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