For me, In-the-moment communication is like shoving a bunch of bread in your mouth, then being told to swallow what you've got in your mouth and talk at the same time. I could write for days on how many conversations I have choked the life out of. Not in the sense of having a boring conversation but more in that my messages weren't received well. I wasn't able to articulate my message well enough for the other person to understand what I was meaning by my statement.
I have been thinking about this topic for about an hour now and one example I have stands out in my mind. It was almost a year ago and I was leaving an Olive Garden with someone I was interested in.
Oh man, I don't even want to talk about this... Oh well... ha!
I walked her out to her car...
Context... or should I? Nah.
I had never seen her car before but I knew what brand she drove. So as I walked her out to her car and she stopped in front of a SUV. I ended up, not really yelling but putting much emphasis on saying.
"This what you drive?!"
Yeah... The shortest story is that she dodged a bullet with this one. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Agh! If I had a chance to pop out from the bushes and yell at myself. First off, I knew she drove a Jeep. But for some reason, I didn't think Jeep made anything other than the thing they are known for, the Wrangler. haha So when I blurted my confusion out, I didn't even think that my message could have been received wrong.
The moral of this story is ask more questions. Or don't blurt. Either works.
Like I said I am terrible at this sort of stuff. I know in my professional life, I have struggled with this on more than one occasion. If I am put on the spot or trying to speak my mind in a conference room full of my peers/management. Simply put, I choke. I know I am 10x more defensive when things start getting directed at me and all that could have caused the focus to come to me is a misinterpretation or miscommunication of what I had said. I am very aware of the issue and I am trying to take steps in figuring out how I can become a better communicator.
I have always preferred sending messages or emailing because I can review and draft out exactly what I am going to say. I make a point to not spell anyone's names wrong and make sure that I put enough detail in what I am saying to, hopefully with some success, get a confirmation that people understood what I had said.
Do your messages get received well by the recipient? Or do you have people asking questions all the time? That could be an indication of either where you or they are at.
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