Just Communicate Better?

“I think it call comes down to better communication. People need to be better at speaking up, saying what they mean and thinking about how they say it,” said the college sophomore to the rest of the group of student leaders. A true statement, indeed. She continued with her thoughts around energy and vibes that people bring into a meeting or a room. Classmates were nodding in agreement. She even gave an example that was relevant and relatable, and highlighted good communication.

This was during the end of the workshop, where we were discussing take-aways and ah-ha moments. She was right that better communication was a big part of this. The crux of the situation, however, is the energy behind the communication. How aware are you of the energy, and how able are you to shift that energy in order to communicate better, think about how you say something, think about the other person when there is a lack of communication and the assumptions people may make? And most of all, be open to other’s communication in a non-judgmental way to help you.

That dialogue was still with me when my phone rang. A friend, a master of non-communication, called to chat after a text I had sent about a mutual acquaintance. This is someone who is in their head a lot and feels that they need work everything out themselves. As we talked, given the conversation that was still in my head, the lack of consistent communication came up. It isn’t that this person is unaware that they do this, they are very aware. It is intentional because they do feel that they need to figure it all out on their own, without the help, support, ideas of a friend. It is that is obvious to them that it has an adverse impact on relationships in their life but that doesn’t seem to matter, even when you point out the hurt feelings.

As I pondered this conversation about better communication and the assumptions that I make when there is radio-silence, I started to think about the energy that would be behind this sense of having to bear it all alone. What creates the pattern of behavior that makes someone believe that they, and only they, can figure out what they need, want, do? What beliefs do they need to have, past experiences and lens to believe that their own head can figure it all out alone. Is it that they have had experiences where people poo-pooed their ideas? Is it that they have felt put down by some for their ideas? Is it that they have been let down?

I believe there was a time I thought that as well. Nobody lives in my world, understands me well enough and always the “how can they help, they have never walked in my shoes?” That is actually the answer. Other people’s experience and sense helps you to broaden yours. Other people look at things differently which helps you to see more options if you are open to it. So many people are not. So many people believe they are the only ones who can create their next step because it is their life. It is their decision. It is their next move.

It is your next move. It is your decision. Too often though, we are doing that with that control button pushed, we must make it happen a certain way. Just like manifestation and allowing the universe to guide you as that plan is probably better than yours, other people’s ideas and thoughts could spark something in you that you hadn’t thought about. Allowing other ideas and ways of something, allows for more creativity. More creativity gives life to new options and new opportunities.

The energy behind the communication issue could certainly be energy that is saying “I know better than you. You can’t understand so I need to do this alone.” A very low level of energy, an energy whose core thought is “I’m right, you’re wrong.” It isn’t that people actually think “I’m right, you’re wrong,” it is the intention behind the action of going it alone, not communicating the issues or situation because why would I? You can’t help me, I need to do this myself.

What if we shifted the energy behind the thinking and thought more about accepting that others’ have a differing view and inviting that in to see what it sparks for us? What if the energy behind the thinking was more about collaboration? That would change the process that we go through to come up with ideas, to work through an issue. We would welcome differing views, we would not judge them. We would reach out to people more because we would be more open to ideas and opinions that maybe weren’t exactly aligned with how we were originally thinking. We would welcome a partner in thought. We would not be sitting in judgment but in awe of process.

It would not only change the dynamic of non-communication, it would enhance the problem solving that we are going through. It would enhance the ideation that we are in the midst of.

So perhaps it is not just communicate better. It is understanding the intention and energy behind why we refuse to communicate better. Why don’t we want another brain on something? Why don’t we want to collaborate to create a new future? Why don’t we trust that other’s have your back and would give you only their best? That becomes the root of what I now ask myself. I have good ideas and good thoughts, but it isn’t enough. I need other people to bounce ideas off of, I need other’s to help me think through things. I now ask myself, how can I be of love and service? Who can help me think about this differently?

So perhaps it isn’t just about communicating better, but inviting others in to help us. Perhaps it is no longer sitting in judgement of ourselves or others but sitting in a place of love, collaboration and appreciation for all that we figure out together.

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