W.A.I.T. – Why Am I Talking?
Wait…wait for what? Wait to see if your talking is productive and edifying. Taking the time to evaluate your own desire to talk – to add input to a conversation – can go a long way in producing positive results. Resolving conflict has a lot to do with thinking about what you are saying and how you are saying it. This week’s episode of DTLC Radio is an addendum to last week’s podcast on Biblical Communication and Conflict Resolution.
Too often we interject and interrupt what others are saying without evaluating what we want to say and why we want to say it. This exercise will help you to slow down, think through, and articulate what you want to say. If your goal is resolution, reconciliation, and productive communication then you have to take responsibility for your interactions. There are several key questions you can ask yourself that will lead your conversations to productive ends.
- Do I have something important to share?
- Is it on topic?
- Does someone else “have the floor”?
- Is what I want to say a fact or just my opinion?
- Did someone else already make this point?
These and other questions will help you to evaluate your input and make sure it adds value to the conversation. There are other questions as well…
- Is what I have to say true?
- Do I have firsthand experience or documented evidence to support my statements?
- Will what I have to say be kind and build up the other person or members of the group?
- Is it necessary to say what I want to say?
Remember, your goal in any conversation is to be understood and to understand another’s point of view. This shows respect and earns it as well. Take a listen to this episode and then take time to think through your most recent conversations and interactions. Where they productive? Can you make them more productive by walking yourself through these steps? Can you help others go through this exercise? The best question is most likely, Do I want to be heard or understood?