What was that? How often have we tried to say something and found that our message was not received? In a mediation recently, a party said to me, "But I am good at communicating, he just doesn't understand me!". It can feel like that, we send out a message that we feel is clear in content and intent. In conflict situations or difficult conversations, frequently these messages are either not received, or from our perspective are misinterpreted.
Communication is literally a two-way street. We need to send a message, but the recipient is just as important. What do they understand the message to be? Maybe they perceive a different substantive message, or they interpret a specific emotional content. In conflict, we need to pay attention to both ends of the message sending / receiving.
This series is going to focus on how to approach difficult conversations and how we can improve our communication to make sure that we give our messages the best chance to be heard, and when receiving messages we apply our best tools to understand them.