The Power of Communication: More Than Just Words

By Stew Darling

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In this blog, you may find yourself pondering whether what we discuss borders on manipulation. And indeed, it does. But let’s be clear – as Unstoppable Forces, we manipulate the environment, not the individual. Perhaps it’s more palatable to use the word “shape” instead of “manipulate,” but at its core, it’s still about exerting influence. Our understanding of communication empowers us to “shape our battle space” consciously.

By harnessing the power of body language and tone, and by practising these skills daily, we gain a unique ability that many in society have forgotten. We become more engaging and captivating conversationalists. When addressing larger groups, our body language and tone will keep our audience enthralled. When executed correctly, they won’t only remember our words; they’ll be more likely to believe in them.

The Changing Landscape of Communication

In an ever-evolving world, the way we communicate is undergoing a transformation. Consider the changing dynamics within families. In my household, a simple debate ensued after every birthday and Christmas: should we call McNanny or message her? McNanny, my mother, had become the subject of this debate. What I hadn’t realised was that my children faced a similar quandary when communicating with their friends. The means of communication had shifted, from phone calls to SMS, Messenger, WhatsApp, and more. It wasn’t that they didn’t want to speak to McNanny; it was merely that the medium of communication had changed.

Similarly, we must acknowledge that psychopaths, individuals with distinct brain wiring, communicate differently from the rest of us. These individuals make up about 1 in 25 of the population and, in most cases, aren’t the axe-wielding, dangerous stereotypes we often see in the media. Everyday psychopaths process the world differently and often struggle with empathy. Their brains react less empathetic to the world until they respond with intense emotions.

Considering these various factors, it becomes apparent that our communication landscape is shifting dramatically. For millennia, humanity communicated face-to-face, weaving stories to deepen familial bonds and create tribes and communities. However, in recent centuries, technology has altered the way we communicate, leading to a decline in face-to-face interactions and a surge in stress levels.

Fortunately, tech giants are recognizing these changes and seeking solutions. Emojis, those quirky digital icons that express emotions, were created by Shigetaka Kurita in the late 1990s. They fill the void left by text-based communication, adding emotional context to written messages. However, even emojis can be misunderstood or misused, as we’ve seen with the infamous eggplant emoji.

The Challenge of Modern Communication

In today’s fast-paced world, communication has been reduced to ever-shortening phrases and acronyms like GSOH (Good Sense of Humor), LMFAO (Laughing My Freaking Ass Off), and LOL (Laugh Out Loud). We expect others to understand these shortcuts, often firing off emails and text messages without much thought. In contrast to the olden days when letters were handwritten and carefully considered before mailing, our modern communication lacks the depth and nuance that once characterised our interactions.

We read emails, craft seemingly light-hearted responses, and hit “send” without contemplating how our messages might be received. Much like psychopaths, we often find ourselves communicating in an empathetic void. This communication shift is rooted in the fact that we’re using only a fraction of our communication abilities – a mere 7%.

Becoming an Unstoppable Force in Communication

As Unstoppable Forces, it’s imperative that we raise our communication standards. The solution is clear: we must engage more of our communication abilities. Embracing this challenge is a powerful way to connect with others on a deeper level, foster empathy, and enhance our interpersonal relationships.

While technology has undoubtedly changed the way we communicate, we must adapt and employ our full range of communication skills to bridge the empathy gap. Emails and text messages are valuable tools if used thoughtfully, but we shouldn’t allow them to replace genuine human connection. As we explore the art of communication, let’s remember that it’s more than just words – it’s the fusion of verbal and nonverbal elements that truly makes our messages impactful.

In conclusion, effective communication encompasses both words and actions, and it evolves with the times. Understanding the power of nonverbal cues, acknowledging shifting communication landscapes, and embracing the challenge of modern communication are essential steps toward becoming an Unstoppable Force in our interactions. As we adapt to new technologies and navigate changing dynamics, let’s always strive to communicate with empathy, depth, and authenticity.

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