Today I deal with an internal issue which has recently had overwhelmingly outward affects. My own doubts about my communication skills. There was a day when I felt I had quite a bit of knowledge "under the belt" when it came to productive and effective communication (even having led some classes in communication and connecting with others). Today is not one of those strong days. The older I get the more I wonder how much I truly know.
No one has ever known me as an overly tactful, entirely politically correct or even gracious communicator. I'm more of your run-of-the-mill, just say what needs to be said, coincidentally stepping-on-some-toes-along-the-way type. And most of my friends have urged me not to change a thing.
But today is a day I wonder about self-improvement. In what I say, if my pure-hearted intent isn't clearly stated and it doesn't come across right... am I the one who needs to change? When in fact, my intent was misinterpreted by the listener (albeit the message being necessary and at times quite direct) - am I the only one at fault that it stung upon delivery? Am I the one communicating incorrectly? Or do the listening hears have any responsibility in how they interpret or understand the message?
I can remember having this conversation with someone many years ago. At that time I felt strongly that it was mostly the communicator's fault... that they weren't taking the signals that your message wasn't coming across right. Today as the situation is reversed and I'm the "faulty communicator"... I ponder other's responsibility in effective two-way communication.
Do I have an answer to this problem? No... I'm still working on fixing this problem which society has been fumbling through for so long. So stay tuned... I'm sure I'll have it all worked out someday and can solve all of our problems... until then... let's just keep the communication lines open...