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Why Bother With Civility: Because It Works!

I have learned that how we say what we say determines whether or not we are heard.

I can’t tell you how many times someone has kicked off a “conversation” by mocking, criticizing or demeaning me. When it happens, that little voice inside my head is screaming what I should say back so loud I cannot hear anything else. I certainly can’t hear what it is they actually want me to know.

Sound familiar?

The irony is that NOT calling me a name or telling me I should educate myself would have given me a chance to actually hear. And if I didn’t understand what was said, I would have been able to formulate a question that might help them help me to understand.

But once verbally slapped, the smart part of my brain (the part that can reason) checks out and the fight or flight part of my brain goes on the attack (or the defensive) in order to keep me “safe”.

Long story short: if you want me to hear your point of view, don’t start by insulting me.

I promise to do the same.

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