Welcome to the world of Miss Information

April 14, 2008 at 2:58 am Leave a comment

Communication is the key to never-ending bliss or complete and total destruction.

If you are like most of us, you live somewhere in the middle on any given day. Even in my house-hold, where both my husband and I hold degrees in Communication Studies from the University of North Texas, the sea of communication is often turbulent and sometimes down right dangerous. We both completed dozens of courses on how to effectively communicate in relationships, across gender lines, during conflict, in a train, in a boat, when it rains, when you bloat etc. . . And yet, that training seems to go out the window when one of us is upset that the other didn’t manage to get the dishwasher loaded, even though he was home all night while the other was spending a 15 hour day at the office followed by a seemingly never ending board meeting.

And although both of us have successful careers in public relations where we spend many hours every day carefully crafting the exact words that will most effectively communicate our message to the intended audiences, we still manage to hurt each others’ feelings when one of us is in the mood for a date night and the other is in the mood to watch Grey’s Anatomy, eat a pint of ice cream, and be in bed by 9.

So if two people steeped in the business of effective communication have issues making it work, how do we expect people who never took so much as a public speaking class to effectively communicate with their mate?

That’s just the thing – even though everyone can agree that in any given situation effective communication is the key to success, most people spend very little time learning how to communicate effectively. In fact, I would hazard to guess that most people don’t even know what effective communication looks like. It’s kind of like make up – if someone has applied it correctly, you don’t notice that it’s there. But if someone pulled out the blue eyeshadow circa 1985, glitter covered false eyelashes, and blush that looks like it was applied with at trowel, you can spot that from a mile away.

And so it is with effective communication. When it’s applied properly in any given situation, it generally goes unnoticed. On the flip side, when we fail to communicate properly, it is as easily noticed as the tears in your wife’s eyes when you present her with a gym membership for your 15th anniversary. Note to male readers: Your wife does not want a gym membership as a present ever. I don’t care if she tells you she has been thinking about joining a gym or even if you find a half completed membership form on the kitchen counter with a post it note that says “Please finish filling this out and drop it by the gym on your way to work.” Don’t do it. Ever. Under any circumstances. Ever.

And so I have started tihs Blog. Clearly not because I am an authority on communicating effectively. In fact, I probably have more experience from the blunders I have made over the years. But because I know what you know: Even though we will fail sometimes, the times we succeed make life much easier. If we can increase our success rate even a little, life at home, at work, at church, and at your in-law’s house will be much easier. And who doesn’t want that?

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Entry filed under: Effective Communication, Uncategorized.

Imperfect Princesses

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