Category Archives: Communication

My Cardinal Rule: Own My Gossip!!

Couldn’t sleep. Lots of thoughts running through my mind and it is a full moon. I have also heard that Mercury goes to retrograde sometime very soon and even though I do not live my life dictated by star charts I do respect the fact that anything as vast and uncharted as our universe can indeed impact and breakdown communication channels. I do not know know enough about astrology to make that a subject of this post, however, I do have some thoughts about communication.

What’s foreground for me today is some crucial conversations I need to have. I like to think of myself as a fairly good communicator willing to engage in tough conversations as needed and equally willing to be vulnerable and own my part in communication breakdowns. People often tell me this is a strength of mine. However, my sleepless night tells me that I am resting on my laurels so to speak.

I know this because I am breaking one of my cardinal rules for keeping my energy clear.   The rule:   Own my gossip.  Meaning if I am saying something about someone else I want to know inside myself that I have, would or will say that same thing to them in person directly when I get the chance.

Living by this rule as been instrumental in keeping me healthy and in building better relationships.  But like anything good for me it is not always easy to live by.  I have many ways of rationalizing my need to gossip.

  • I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings
  • I need to clear this up myself first and really it is no big deal
  • I’m not gossiping I am just venting
  • Mercury is in retrograde so it’s not a good time to have this conversation

There are more I could add to this list and each of us has our own spin on the reasons we don’t clean up our gossip.  The point is, I know that when I start drawing on this list I’m walking the slippery slope down a path that leads to broken down communication, dishonest relationships and unhealthy, sleepless nights for me.

I know people have all sorts of reactions to the word gossip.  Personally I think we all do it and that gossiping isn’t the problem.  Gossiping can actually be a very good thing.  I often talk about folks who are far away with friends that are present and we laugh and get in touch with our warmth and feelings for the person we both know.  That’s one form of gossip.  In other words, of course I talk about my friends, colleagues and family ‘behind their backs’ (when they are not around)   I would hope so,  they are the most important people in my life!  The real issue is have I had the conversation I need to have directly with them.  Shared directly the good stuff andthe not so good stuff.  When I have,  gossiping is a great way to keep my heart open to those I love who I don’t always get to speak too directly.

Back to today and me:  I am not owning my  gossip.  I am saying things about someone I care about that I know I have not said and don’t really want to say directly to them.

Yes having the conversation now will be harder because I broke my rule so the job just got tougher.  Still the sooner I have the crucial conversation the better.

I am hoping by tomorrow’s post I will have cleaned up my communication channels and if not I sure hope I am not blaming Mercury.  This is my own doing.

Blogging Blues

I have been offline now for two days. It all started when I tried to put video into one of my post. Seems there was a problem with the image files, they looked uploaded but never made it to the screen. I probably could have lived without the images, however, I soon discovered there were a few other little issues happening somewhere inside the code or in the interface between WP and my hosting company. End result – Blog down.

Fortunately my friend who got me up and running took charge and managed the effort going on behind the scenes. She worked with my hosting site and someone and India to eventually resolve the issues. I do not quite know how it got so bad or what is really fixed now but I am back online.

What I learned from this brief shutdown is that I have grown attached to the blogging process. I don’t have a huge following but the folks who are reading have become important to me. I enjoy tossing out my ideas and hearing back your comments. I never would have thought I would be someone who would suffer from Blogging Blues; however it seems even with only a few weeks under my belt I have become a Blogger!! And when I’m offline I miss the connection.

Thanks for hanging in even when the page was shutdown. I will do my best to get back up to speed!!

To Tweet or Not to Tweet

How to decide – to tweet or not to tweet? to join Linkin or Plaxo? Facebook or Myspace? These are the questions that are running through my mind.

Now that I am blogging, I can not help but want to take the next step and link myself further into the world, wide web. Yet I find myself overwhelmed with the choices. Plus I admit I am in fear of becoming someone who sits in front of my computer screen all day commenting, posting, tweeting and networking without ever getting out of the house.

This possibility of becoming totally connected and feeling responsible to reply or tweet whatever and wherever is intimidating.

Just a little over a year ago I moved to Montana to get away from the big city and enjoy open space, big sky and life in a ski and summer resort town. I love biking, hiking and just driving through beautiful country. My friends worried that I might become a gun carrying hunter who smokes and votes conservatively. I had no worries of anything like that. But I never thought the real concern would come from becoming too linked into to the internet.

I’m not there yet but I can feel the pull. The plugins call to me whenever I login to my dashboard in see that indeed my blog could be linked to more tags and search engines if I comment, post and tweet throughout the day.

I am a slight introvert so the pull to be able to remain here in the comfort of my own home and reach out and touch the world is tempting. But so is the sunshine and so far getting on my bike is more appealing then creating a Facebook page. But fall is coming and winters in Montana are an easy invitation to stay, sitting by the fire, plugged in to the web for contact and connection.

Yes I will have to make the leap. Tweet and post, comment and link but for now the open space of Montana still wins out over the world, wide web, face to face contact with people who’s names I recognize beats nicknames and RSS feed for communing and socializing.

But I see the day coming …. what will I decide…. to Tweet or not to tweet?

My 3 C’s: A Recipe for Overcoming Obstacles

I generally like to keep things simple.  Often that means boiling down and summarizing what I know and belief into three steps.  I was told three steps is the magic number for success.  So when I am struggling or find myself in fear and doubt I like to go back to the basics – my three c’s.

  • am I curious about what’s happening
  • am I willing to use my courage
  • am I committed

Curiosity is the magic ingredient for me because when I become curious my energy shifts and the striving, driving part of me relaxes and I become more playful.  It is amazing how much more information is available when I am playful and relaxed then when I am striving and driving.

Often through being cuirous I recognize something I am not doing.  Then it becomes an issue of courage.  Will I step in and do what’s new, or what’s uncomfortable.  I use to think of courage as being tough and never letting on that I am struggling.  However, now I belief toughness does not take much courage at all.  Let’s face it – it is easier to fire someone and never see them again – then it is to have a crucial conversation, give feedback and then show day after day working with someone you may not always agree with or even like.  Courage is about not being tough but about being ‘real’- showing my vulnerability and staying in.

Which brings me to commitment.  Am I willing to stick it out.  I’d like to think of myself as a very committed person to things I say I will do.  But I know I can easily get distracted or decide the pain is not worth the gain and then my commitment wavers. Take this Blog – I said I wanted to write daily in the beginning.  It’s easy to let a day go by without writing because maybe I have nothing to say or I am busy doing other things.  But really how long does it take to write something – to stick to my commitment.

Indeed the 3 C’s are just one quick recipe for challenges and obstacles.  Let me know what you think or what simple recipe you use to kick start yourself out of the pit or over a stuck point.