The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.
—George Bernard Shaw
- Your boss keeps piling on the work while your coworker skates by with the minimum. You want to keep your job, so you keep your mouth shut.
- You work on a team, and another member of the team is chronically late with her piece of the puzzle. You are beyond frustrated, but you don't have the power or authority to do or say anything.
- Your coworker is constantly negative with you and positive in front of the boss. Knowing he can be positive with the boss, and he is choosing to be negative with you, infuriates you. You decide to give him a taste of his own medicine by being negative to him.
Whether it's saying no, standing up for yourself, pointing out something that needs to change, or even saying something positive, ironically, the things we need to say the most are the things we avoid saying. Or we wait until we're so frustrated or angry that we lash out with hurtful words or talk behind the person's back—damaging important relationships. Why does this happen?
There could be a number of reasons that we don't say what we need to. Sometimes we're afraid it will be taken the wrong way, or we just don't know how to say it. Often we want to avoid conflict altogether. Many of us don't want to open that can of worms.
If you are not willing to say what you want or need to say, use that as an awareness and trace your way through GRIT® to see what might be happening ...