June 6, 2019 Carole Levy

Do you mean “yes” or “no”?

Title: Do you mean “yes” or “no”?

We all have been there: saying “yes” to a request when we meant “no” and “no” when we meant “yes”. 

Sometimes we say the opposite of what we mean because we want to please others, avoid a conflict or taking a risk, or to protect our reputation. 

These and other sub-texts influence our confused choices.  

The best communication skills start with being aware of our sub-text and then to engage in a conversation with others that can create a win-win situation. Simply asking for my needs to be met while ignoring the sub-text of others involved is not going to work either. 

Or perhaps it could! Imagine a world in which everybody asks for what they need without any fuss. And then in return, everybody honestly responds with a “yes” or a “no” that they really mean, without any fuss either. Wouldn’t life be easier?!

Yes and no.

Perhaps we would also miss an aspect of what makes the glue of solid relationships: making complex and trivial decisions together by learning to navigate all the conflicted needs and desires inherent in being human.

Don’t you think? 

Yes or no?

Reflective questions: When do you say “yes” when you mean “no”? When do you say “no” when my mean “yes”? What are the reasons behind your choices?

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