the inspiration blog

speaking up in difficult situations (2 of 3) – where to speak up

Posted on: March 7, 2011

We have so many wonderful modes of communication these days. Let me rephrase the first part: we have so many wonderful means of avoiding direct confrontation. Need to make plans or perhaps superficial talk? Texting or instant messaging is dandy. But for something that’s sticky, in person is the best way to talk about it.

Why? Because of nonverbal communication – which makes up fifty to eighty percent of communication. Tone of voice, body language, etc., simply cannot be replaced by a smiley face emoticon. Which means that when you are not in person, growing in succession from video (Skype) to phone to email to IMing and texting – you have an increasingly larger chance of being misunderstood.

Yes, it’s oh-so-easy to avoid direct hurt feelings by doing so, but also leads to drawn-out conflict. So. Do it in person, and make sure there’s enough time to really talk.

In part 3: Guidelines for what – and what not to say.

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