January 30, 2020

What You Say Matters Less Than How You Say It

What you say matters less than how you say it.

Is your tone bringing people closer or pushing them away?

The way you communicate can build or break trust.
The way you communicate can create or destroy psychological safety.

We humans innately look for safety. It’s unconscious and instant – we either feel safe or we don’t.
When we don’t – fight or flight.

This doesn’t only happen in the middle of a forest face to face with a bear.
It happens at work, in relationships, and everyday life.

Whether you are the leader, the manager, or the coworker – the way you say anything tells me whether you are on my side or not.
The way you say anything, tells me whether I’m safe or not.
The way you say anything, tells me whether to trust or to run.

When you wrap up and deliver your communication with anger and aggression – my immediate reaction is to shut the door and defend.

When you raise your voice and yell at me – my immediate reaction is to protect myself.

When your tone conveys you are here to help me, to understand – I stay open, and I’m better able to receive and take constructive action.

Your tone can make enemies or allies.

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