Talk More, Text Less
A friend recently shared with me how she’d heard via her teenage son that one of his friends had been dabbling with drugs. She knew his parents would want to know but was nervous about how they’d react. She considered sending a text – it seemed easier. But the brave part of her knew that she really needed to pick up the phone and call them. When she found the courage to make the call, the young man’s mother was immensely grateful, albeit very upset at by she’d been told.
Opting to send an email or text, when a personal conversation would be so much better, is something I see many people doing both in their personal and work relationships. As I wrote in Brave, as revolutionizing technology has been, it’s also provided a convenient way of avoiding the real work of meaningful communication when it matters most. It’s become an all too common sight to see friends sitting around texting on their devices rather than talking to the people right beside them.
Whether it’s connecting more deeply to the people in your life or addressing an awkward issue with an office colleague, letting a friend know their actions have hurt us or bowing out of a commitment, too often we hide hide behind our devices. It spares us the awkwardness. But our devices can make cowards of us if we aren’t careful!
While we often we think of courage as heroism on the battlefield, the truth is that we are called to be courageous every day of our lives – particularly in how we connect and communicate with those around us.
So whether it’s a difficult conversation you’d rather avoid, calling someone on poor behavior or apologizing for your own, I challenge you to be braver in how you communicate – to talk more, type less, and having the courage to say what needs to be said. Because if there’s one thing I’ve learnt over the years it is this:
If there’s something you genuinely want to say, chances are
there’s someone who genuinely needs to hear it.
Playing it safe and avoiding the discomfort of meaningful conversation can exact a steep toll not just on the quality of your relationships, but on your success in every arena of life.
So speak bravely. People need to hear what you have to say but they also need to know you care enough to be brave in how you communicate it.
If you’ve got a comment on this, please share below. I also encourage you to watch my recent TV interview here on how to speak up more bravely.