Sunday, June 14, 2009

Not Understood? Say it in a New Way

My husband and I had a fight today, right in front of our good friends Terry and Al. My husband had told me something and I clearly didn’t understand because I responded in a way that did not make any sense to him. So he repeated what he had said. And I responded again in the same way.

He finally lost his temper and said “Why don’t you listen to me?” Now, I was listening to him. But I wasn’t getting any clues as to the fact that he meant something different than I was interpreting.

This definitely wasn't a case 'how to make your wife happy'!

Our friend Al said “What part of it didn’t you understand?” I said “All of it!” And then I asked “Can you say it in other words?”

And so my husband rephrased his statement. Oh! I got it! I finally understood.

The reason I am writing about this now is because there is a song on the radio right now and it has the lyric “Say what you need to say”. John Maher, the singer, repeats the phrase over and over and over again. (I counted 16 times!)

My point is don’t keep repeating the same thing. Rephrase it. It helps people to understand it and in the case of John Maher would make the song so much more interesting! Don’t say the same thing over and over. Rephrase it so that the person who is listening can hear it in a new way.

People have different perceptions about what things mean and when they are stuck in one way of looking at something they sometimes need to be physically or at least metaphorically moved to see the meaning of your words. Change the words – move into a new position and think about how you can get your point across in a new way.

Ok, I think I have said that enough. This post is over.

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