Do You Jump To Conclusions?
A few days ago, I had a conversation with a friend who was very upset over a text message she received from a person she was dating. On and on she went over what it said…..and the “attitude and emotion” of the text. Clearly there is no emotion in a text and people certainly can’t read it if there is.
In the fast-paced world we live in, it is not typical for us to stop and consider the power of context. It is easy to jump to a conclusion or interpret verbal and non-verbal communication negatively (or positively) when we don’t pause to consider alternative explanations. In my friend’s case she discovered, after further investigation, that she had jumped to a conclusion based on her own filters. Like most of us, she interpreted the communication in a way that made it completely logical to be mad and willing to terminate her relationship with this new found friend. After applying a few simple, seemingly obvious steps, she was able to restore the connection with her friend and learn a valuable lesson.
You may be thinking, “Obviously you can't read emotion in text.” That is only part of the point here. The real point is, we never have all the information we think we have until we do two things. First verify then clarify.
Here are a few things you can do: