“Can we talk here?”
Comedienne Joan Rivers made that question famous.
The point was not for dialogue. SHE was going to do all the talking.
When parents want to “talk” to their children, presuming they are not yet adults, how interested are the parents in what a child might have to say, unless it’s an admission of wrongdoing?
The parents want to do all the talking.
That point was sung home in the Rod Stewart tune, “Young Turks.” When the boy and girl ran away from home, the boy wrote a letter to the girl’s parents to announce that they had given birth to a son. He apologized that it had to come to that, but, as the lyric goes, “There ain’t no point in talking if nobody’s listening, so we just ran away.”
Talking can be productive ONLY IF someone is listening, and is allowed to talk back. With children, talking back can be a punishable sin. With teens, allowing them to talk may give parents clues about what they are really thinking, what they may be hiding and what they may be planning. Getting a jump on that can mean the difference between keeping the kids at home, or having them run away.
Talking may be cheap. It’s dialogue, and listening, that are valuable.
When people can talk to each other, see the other’s point of view, much good can happen.
Dictators can have power, but that power is dwarfed by good dialogue.
DICTATORS VS. DIALOGUE
In a dictatorship, things can get done. When there is dialogue, things can get done more willingly, therefore better and more powerfully.
When there is dialogue, each side of the conversation may not see ALL the results they are looking for. It may be more like everyone getting SOME of the results they were looking for. That type of talk, usually followed by a handshake, a hug or a kiss, gets the kind of results EVERYONE involved can buy into.
Some people prefer to have guns, or other weapons, do their talking. The results may be desirable to the aggressor, but how much more powerful is resolving a dispute with words rather than weapons?
For that to happen, people have to be willing to accept, even embrace, scenarios they don’t entirely create. They have to listen, talk, and let others talk back.
Some things are best left unsaid. Make sure that when you are having a stressful conversation that you think before you talk. You can make clear what you are thinking without using inappropriate or insulting words. If someone utters such a thing, the listener has to realize it was said in a time of stress. The meaning may be totally different from what the listener perceives, because the listener may also be under stress.
Not all conversations are pleasant. Some don’t have to be unpleasant. Try to make your part of a conversation as informative as possible, without unnecessary emotion. Try to listen hard to the other person’s information without unnecessary emotion.
For a way to earn potentially significant income with less talk and more listening, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. Let the tools, and others, do the talking for you.
In general, however, speak softly, listen hard and let others talk back. You’ll sense real power in great dialogue.
“Can we talk here?”