What We Have Is A Failure To Communicate

Communication1Does what you say matter more than how you say it? This is the age-old question that many people have concerning verbal communication. This dilemma seems to arrest people as they are trying to verbalize their feelings in order to get their point across. There is a huge discrepancy between the way people generally process the information they hear as opposed to the way they communicate their thoughts. Factors often exist when there is a breakdown in the communication process that are often overlooked such as culture, ethnicity, education, economics, a person’s mental condition, preferences, etc. These factors should not be undermined as though they are not important to proper communication. If a person desires to get their point across without causing a ruckus, it will prove to be a wise investment of time to learn communication skills. Especially if you are married, where most of your communication battles will occur, this is the ideal dialogue for you.

The Communicator’s Aim:
The person communicating should immediately take into account the aforementioned factors. This is not an assumption of one’s intelligence, but rather wisdom. The communicator’s aim should be to be understood. If a person attends any of my business conclaves, they can easily discern that I do not use big words to try to impress the people in attendance. My aim is not to impress, but to impress upon them the importance of the information given. I like to hold my audiences with my verbal skills not lose them.

Communication Problems in Marriage:
When married couples have communication problems, it is usually because they have established a non-verbal communication basis that they have not mastered. Assumptions are made because of previous misunderstanding and therefore instead of clearly communicating their thoughts to one another they give out singles that are rarely caught or understood. If you find yourself often saying, “I thought you meant…,” this response is an indication that you clearly have a communication problem.

A Communication Problem:
Some years back, there was a movie that Paul Newman starred in entitled, Cool Hand Luke. The character Paul Newman was playing was a rebel young man that often found himself in trouble with the law. He ended up in a back-woods prison surrounded by swamp and venomous snakes. The Warden would often inform the prisoners that if they tried to escape, they would both be recaptured and returned to be brutally beaten to serve as a reminder to not attempt to escape again or the swamp would kill them before they could escape to freedom. One day, Paul Newman’s character escaped, but was later captured and returned to the prison to resume his sentence. This is when the Warden spoke the famous phrase, “What we have here is a failure to communicate.” As a young man, I loved the phrase but I did not fully understand it until later in my years. What was meant was if you continue to do the opposite of what is spoken, obviously there is a misunderstanding.

Body Language Speaks Loudly:
Oftentimes, when words or phrases are misunderstood, it is usually because what is said may have a different meaning or connotation to the listener. The second reason for the possible misunderstanding could be, and in most cases is, when what is said does not correspond with the tone and facial expression when it was spoken. Therefore, the person may not have heard what you said because they were engulfed by how you said it. This is a major problem in marriage and sometimes in business board meetings. Identifying the problem is a third of the solution. However, knowing what to do with your new discovery is another part of the solution. Having the humility to place priority on the importance of getting and receiving an understanding, is far better and advantageous than gratifying your frustrations.

Clarification of a Solution:
Take your time, be patient, because the person you may be talking to, may have a legitimate hearing impairment. Communication is the basis to life. General simple verbiage gives you a far better percentage of being understood than speaking in an extra extensive vocabulary that may not impress anyone but you.

Recommended Reading:

I frequently say, “Readers are leaders and leaders are readers.” I strongly believe this statement; therefore, I have taken the time to recommend reading material that I believe will greatly benefit your life and business endeavors. Click the images to see more information or to order the books from Amazon.com.

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The materials are provided for your convenience and Dr. Brown will earn a small commission from Amazon when you purchase through the links provided above.

Come let’s talk some more about this, comment your thoughts below.

Navigating Your Way to Wealth

Since we are living in such unpredictable and complicated times, it is vital that people have a sense about how to navigate their way to success. Learning to dictate the direction your life is going to take during uncertainty in our economy and instability in our government is vital in maintaining mental focus and structure. Control, with a sense of calmness is the key component to avoid panic and frustration that occur while battling the giants of discouragement and mental bankruptcy.

While many of Americans are seemingly drowning in an ocean of despondency, many people are looking for rafters to float on instead of swimming to the shores of safety. Since times are turbulent and unpredictable, it is time to make a conscious decision to predict the direction of the shaking to balance your thoughts and actions. In other words, like a surfer, you must balance and navigate yourself on the waves of financial turmoil and turn the ride into a profitable and exciting one.

You and I cannot do much about the financial mess our country has settled into. However, we can do something amazingly incredible, which can strengthen our resolve against possibly yielding to and being negatively affected by the fear that blankets this era. We can create opportunities to first develop a pattern for success and then teach others how to succeed with our proven method.

There is no greater story that can illustrate what I am writing about than the story of Harriet Tubman. She was a black female slave that lived during one of the darkest periods of American history. She was born in 1820 during a time when America was becoming increasingly divided on the issue of slavery. These were horrible times for slaves and hundreds of thousands of slaves were horribly mistreated and demeaned as human beings. Especially when slaves would be caught after trying to escape, their punishment was worst any domestic animal would ever be treated by a human being. Harriet Tubman watched her brother attempt his escape from slavery three times and all three times, he would be recaptured and brought back to the plantation. Even though her brother could never escape to freedom, it did not detour her from properly planning and navigating her own escape.

Harriet Tubman, self-emancipated slave fled from Maryland to freedom in Philadelphia in 1849 along the secret route to freedom known as the Underground Railroad in which she became the conductor. For the next 10 years after her successful escape, she made repeated secret trips back to Maryland and other slave states, leading over 300 escaped slaves, (including her brother who could never succeed on his own), north to freedom in Canada. Even though her husband, who was a free slave, had threatened to inform her master of her attempt to escape, she went triumphantly through the night believing she would succeed.

How could this uneducated black female slave accomplish such a task during a time there was a bounty on her head for more than forty thousand dollars which was a lot of money in those days? Was she completely oblivious to the dangers of her travel and the almost insurmountable obstacles that stood in her path? The answer is an emphatic no! Harriet Tubman knew of the repercussions if she were caught and completely aware of the dangers and possible spies deployed to catch her. However, she ignored them all and diligently fled to freedom.

Like Harriet Tubman, you too can navigate your way through the darkest of night, the rough terrain of high unemployment, and the uncertainty of our economy and yet succeed. Hard times does not keep you from success, it just creates greater challenges to success. In order to navigate through tough times emotionally, spiritually, and financially you must become tougher than the present time. Maintain your focus and sobriety and do not allow yourself to become drunk on the eve of reconstruction. You can navigate your way out of debt and into wealth. Stay in control of your actions and your actions will cause favorable circumstances that will not leave you barren or unproductive despite the times.