I share a lot. I'm a tad random. But I have learned one lesson: love, laugh, live, and first breathe. :) xo
|"Do you like talking to strangers at parties, or do you get nervous? "|
|"Well, here's a handy tip I learned that makes mingling way easier..."|
|"Don't worry if the first two seconds are awkward."|
|"A friend told me this years ago, and it totally changed my approach to parties."|
|"When you strike up conversation with strangers, the first moment is basically guaranteed to be awkward. Who cares! Embrace it! Just walk up to someone, introduce yourself, and push through those first two seconds as if you're opening a door to the conversation. Once you get into an awesome, fun, rollicking chat, no one will remember how it started. Knowing this advice makes me feel free to just walk up to whomever and just start talking." :||)|
|"Thoughts? Any other tips for mingling? What do you talk about? (My three foolproof questions:||Seen any good movies lately? How do you know the host? Any fun vacations coming up?)"|
"Want to hear a fascinating little etiquette tip?"
"When you’re introducing someone, you should always say their name first and their relationship to you second."
Wrong: [This is my brother, Benji.]
Right: [This is Benji, my Brother.]
"That way, you spotlight the person—not their connection to you. It’s a small thing, but it makes a lovely difference! I just learned this, and I’m doing it from now on."
"What do you think? Great? Random? Who cares? xo"
I LOVE IT Joanna! :) Brilliant Idea! :)
"The power of preserving silence is the very first requisite to all who wish to shine, or even please in discourse; and those who cannot preserve it, have really no business to speak. … The silence that, without any deferential air, listens with polite attention, is more flattering than compliments, and more frequently broken for the purpose of encouraging others to speak, than to display the listener’s own powers. This is the really eloquent silence. It requires great genius—more perhaps than speaking—and few are gifted with the talent…"
swissmiss | The Art of Conversation - Martine’s Hand-book of Etiquette, and Guide to True Politeness
|For the Journal of the American Revolution, Todd Andrlik compiled a list of the ages of the key participants in the Revolutionary War as of July 4, 1776. Many of them were surprisingly young:||Marquis de Lafayette, 18|
|James Monroe, 18|
|Gilbert Stuart, 20|
|Aaron Burr, 20|
|Alexander Hamilton, 21|
|Betsy Ross, 24|
|James Madison, 25 This is kind of blowing my mind...because of the compression of history, I'd always assumed all these people were around the same age. But in thinking about it, all startups need young people...Hamilton, Lafayette, and Burr were perhaps the Gates, Jobs, and Zuckerberg of the War. Some more ages, just for reference:||Thomas Jefferson, 33|
|John Adams, 40|
|Paul Revere, 41|
|George Washington, 44|
|Samuel Adams, 53 The oldest prominent participant in the Revolution, by a wide margin, was Benjamin Franklin, who was 70 years old on July 4, 1776. Franklin was a full two generations removed from the likes of Madison and Hamilton. But the oldest participant in the war was Samuel Whittemore, who fought in an early skirmish at the age of 80. I'll let Wikipedia take it from here:||Whittemore was in his fields when he spotted an approaching British relief brigade under Earl Percy, sent to assist the retreat. Whittemore loaded his musket and ambushed the British from behind a nearby stone wall, killing one soldier. He then drew his dueling pistols and killed a grenadier and mortally wounded a second. By the time Whittemore had fired his third shot, a British detachment reached his position; Whittemore drew his sword and attacked. He was shot in the face, bayoneted thirteen times, and left for dead in a pool of blood. He was found alive, trying to load his musket to fight again. He was taken to Dr. Cotton Tufts of Medford, who perceived no hope for his survival. However, Whittemore lived another 18 years until dying of natural causes at the age of 98. !!!|
…”You made a classic mistake,” he told me.
"Me? I made the mistake?" I was only half joking.
"Yes. And you just made it again," he said. "You’re stuck in your perspective: You didn’t mean to be late. But that’s not the point. The point is that you were late. The point — and what’s important in your communication — is how your lateness impacted Eleanor."
In other words, I was focused on my intention while Eleanor was focused on the consequences. We were having two different conversations. In the end, we both felt unacknowledged, misunderstood, and angry.
The more I thought about what Ken said, the more I recognized that this battle — intention vs. consequences — was the root cause of so much interpersonal discord.
As it turns out, it’s not the thought that counts or even the action that counts. That’s because the other person doesn’t experience your thought or your action. They experience the consequences of your action.
…So how do you get out of this downward spiral?
It’s stunningly simple, actually. When you’ve done something that upsets someone — no matter who’s right — always start the conversation by acknowledging how your actions impacted the other person. Save the discussion about your intentions for later. Much later. Maybe never. Because, in the end, your intentions don’t matter much.
What if you don’t think the other person is right — or justified — in feeling the way they do? It doesn’t matter. Because you’re not striving for agreement. You’re going for understanding.
What should I have said to Eleanor?
"I see you’re angry. You’ve been sitting here for 30 minutes and that’s got to be frustrating. And it’s not the first time. Also, I can see how it seems like I think being with a client gives me permission to be late. I’m sorry you had to sit here waiting for so long."
All of that is true. Your job is to acknowledge their reality — which is critical to maintaining the relationship. As Ken described it to me: “If someone’s reality, as they see it, is negated, what motivation do they have to stay in the relationship?”
In the email back and forth I described earlier, instead of clarifying what you meant, consider writing something like: “I could see how my criticizing your performance — especially via email — feels obnoxious to you. How it sounds critical and maybe dismissive of your efforts in the meeting.”
I said this was simple but I didn’t say it was easy.
The hardest part is our emotional resistance. We’re so focused on our own challenges that it’s often hard to acknowledge the challenges of others. Especially if we are their challenge and they are ours. Especially when they lash out at us in anger. Especially when we feel misunderstood. In that moment, when we empathize with them and their criticism of our behavior, it almost feels like we’re betraying ourselves.
But we’re not. We’re just empathizing.
If we succeed in doing all this well, we’ll often find that, along with our relationships, something else gets better: our behavior."
"The true spirit of conversation consists more in bringing out the cleverness of others than in showing a great deal of it yourself; he who goes away pleased with himself and his own wit is also greatly pleased with you."