Tag Archives: Alan Greenspan

Assumption: The Root of All Miscommunications

Miscommunication happens when we fail to accurately convey what we mean by what we have said. It can happen when we make a statement and those around us immediately make assumptions about what we meant or why we said it.

Sunrise partially blocked by clouds and relected in the tops of waves and the wet sand on the shore

The sun is ignorant of the clouds that obscure its light and of the fact that we then partly remain in the shadows of darkness.

I don’t have any studies to back me up, but based on my own observations, I’m willing to say it happens to each of us at least twice a day. Once, when someone else makes an incorrect assumption about something we have said, and again when we make an incorrect assumption about what someone else has said. That’s a lot of miscommunication. If we routinely made two wrong turns while driving in an area we know, we’d be alarmed for the condition of our minds.

The difference between having a conversation and driving is that when we drive, we know the exact location of our destination and we get plenty of feedback in the form of familiar landmarks to tell us how to get there. We can confirm we have arrived at our intended destination by reading posted signs. We only get that kind of feedback and confirmation in our conversations if we ask for it.

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