Monthly archives "May 2012"

From Mechanics to Meaning

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Some people mumble or talk too quietly for the listener to hear what they’re trying to get across.  While this is obviously not an effective way to communicate, some people do it routinely and often unconsciously.

It’s good to remember that communication is in what is received, not in what is transmitted.  It’s also good to remember that communication is one of the easiest places to measure power.  Listen with that in mind.  Some people communicate in ways that show them to have too little power while some people show themselves to inappropriately use too much power.  Effective communicators inspire with their balanced and responsive use of power.  That power translates into having a strong influence on the flow of the conversation and being listened to well.

In communicating verbally with someone, strive to be heard effectively.  Now, that is such simple and even superficial advice but let me share a secret.  It’s magic.  Here’s how:

If you can hold and sustain the intention to consciously speak in such a way that your listener can hear and understand every syllable of every word, and you can consciously hold yourself accountable to live up to carrying out that intention every time you speak, you will find that you will soon start to think in more effective ways about what specific words to use to most accurately convey the meaning you want to get across.  That’s power.  Thus, by putting your attention on the mechanics of speaking, you will magically evolve your consciousness to have more alignment between what you want to say and what the other person understands.  This is a path towards graciously strengthening your power.  And as your power grows this way, you will be less inclined to give your power away by being non-assertive, co-dependent, vague about your needs, or being unconscious enough to be played for a sucker by the less scrupulous people in your world.

Improve what you can improve in yourself – that is, what is in your control – and who you are in the world evolves in ways that seem unrelated to what you improved.

Copyright © 2014 Jim Lehrman