My stepfather had a saying, “Put your mind in gear before you put your mouth in motion.”  Sound advice.

Before you have that communication, try it on yourself.  Imagine you were receiving the communication you want to deliver.  How do you hear things most effectively? I find that if you give a message in the way you’d like to receive it – – yep, that compassion thing again! – – it makes a big difference.  I also find that this may take some practice, rehearsing or editing.

What is it you really want to communicate?  I bet you don’t want to just yell for its own sake.  Let me offer a specific example.  My friend hurt my feelings by coming to New York from Virginia for Christmas and not telling me and saying that she was “going out of town.”  When I really look at it, it’s unacceptable for me for my friend to feel she has to be deceitful in our friendship.  If our friendship is as close as we “say” it is, I am unwilling to have discomfort trump honesty.  There was a lot more I discovered, which I will share with you tomorrow.  For today, see for yourself what it is you really want to communicate and how you can deliver that message in a way that honors your feelings, respects the other person and your relationship.

Got questions? Want to rehearse here? Go for it!