Have you ever wondered how a conversation spun out of control? You know what I mean? You had the best of intentions and it started out really well only to end in a disaster? I’ve had a few of those myself.
What makes Crucial Conversations a great resource to help navigate the tricky situations that can arise when our interests conflict is that it identifies the points when communication breaks down and then recommends solutions that are not only easy to implement, but also, help us to dial down the temperature when things get too hot.
The authors, Patterson, Grenny, McMillan, and Switzler write that, “Most human problems lie in how people behave when others disagree with them about high stakes, emotional issues.”
In their opinion, a conversation turns crucial when opinions differ, when people have strong emotions, and when the stakes are high. It’s not only in marital relations that those conditions are met. Crucial conversations can happen anywhere, so having some tools to deal with them effectively, not only helps to have a better result, it improves our relationships with others and our health.
The negative feelings we hold in, the emotional pain we suffer, and the constant battering we endure as we stumble our way through unhealthy conversations slowly eat away at our health. – The Authors
In just a couple of hundred pages, you can learn effective tools to communicate better. Kipling writes that if you can, “… keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you …” I say you will not only “be a man”, you will improve your health, your relationships and your quality of life if you apply their framework.
The key skill of effective leaders, team builders, parents and loved ones is the ability to navigate political and emotional issues effectively and with empathy. They find a way to get the relevant information out in the open and make it safe for everyone to contribute to the conversation.
If you ever wanted to have the skill that is a game changer in your life, check out this book. Click on the picture above to get more information.
- Restore Safety – Whenever a conversation turns crucial, remember to make it safe for the other person to express their thoughts and feelings. You can’t progress if the other person doesn’t feel safe.
- Identify a Mutual Purpose – Find something to agree on and build from there.
- Respect Their Experience – Suspend the belief that you are 100% right and have the best solution. Instead, learn their point of view and why. When you understand where they are coming from, they are more likely to be open to what you have to say.
- Focus on Outcome – When things amp up, we can get sidetracked into a game of who wins. Get into the habit of noticiing when you step out of dialogue and then refocus on the outcome. When you do, you take back ownership of your physiology and blood heads back to your brain. :
Having frameworks in your communication tool kit like those outlined in Crucial Conversations help you to not only become more effective in your communication, have better relationships, and trust yourself more, you also feel more confident and have more courage to take more risks in creating a business and a life that you love. This kind of skill is worth the effort to take the time to learn and to implement.
Be brave and speak your mind – Christine Jeffrey
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Thank you so much for reading and until next time,
Make the most of the time you have!
Coach “Speak Up. You’ve Got A lot to Say”