Tag Archives: conversation

Please Make This Argument Go Away

I’ve spent the last few days immersed in family history, including the story of two brothers who split apart, became business competitors, and apparently did not speak to each other ever again.

autumn trees around the lake, reflected in the water.

We cannot change the future by reflecting on the past. History cannot change, but it does not have to repeat itself.

Talk about having an argument! Something tells me this was over more than who got the wishbone after Thanksgiving dinner.It is of course pure supposition on my part, but my guess is that they never resolved their conflict because they focused only on what had happened in the past, instead of how they could work together in the future.

It doesn’t matter whether the conflict is about something monumentally significant or infinitesimally small; a conflict is really about one person losing so the other can win. I have to be right. So that means you must be wrong.  Continue reading

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Speak-us Interrupt-us

Ever try to talk to someone who wants to finish your sentences for you? I’m not talking about someone who knows you so well that the two of you quickly get on the same thought-path.

Woman holding up hand to indicate stop.

Speaking over another says we believe we are more important than the person who was already speaking. We can hold on to our ideas until it is our turn to talk.

I’m talking about the person who constantly interrupts and won’t let you finish a sentence. We all deserve more respect.

When someone repeatedly interrupts you, you have several options. Hopefully, you want to do more than just finish your sentence. You also want to establish a relationship built on mutual respect. If you settle for regaining control of the conversation, you will forever be fighting the battle of finishing your sentences. If you take approach that others must respect you, you may lose out on a few conversations in the short-term, but ultimately, you will get your real message across.  Continue reading

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A Tantrum Won’t Yield Results

Not too long ago I witnessed a full blown temper-tantrum by a boy who must have been about six. He yelled, he hit things and himself, he sprawled on the floor and kicked his feet. He cried crocodile tears worthy of a Daytime Emmy.

Artwork in the Grounds for Sculpture (Trenton, NJ) of an elderly lady sitting on a park bench, listening to an elderly man who is leaning over the back of the bench

Many misunderstandings come not from what is said or done, but from what we tell ourselves about what is said or done. We can ask for what we want, and we can let it go and have time for something that makes us happy.

For all of his acting out, he got no response from anyone. After a bit, he got up off the floor and joined his mother standing about 10 feet away, who appeared to have passed the time by carefully considering several items for purchase, none of which went into her cart.  

It was clear she expected him to use words to say what he wanted, or to express his disappointment at being denied what he wanted. Continue reading

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Filed under Respect