The Tool Time series embraces the RPM model of Communichology™ strategies. In the two previous Tool Time articles, I recommended embracing the 3R’s (Part 1) and the 3P’s (Part 2) to avoid being a “tool” much of the time. In this final installment, here now are the 3M’s:
1. MANAGE your emotions. Pleeeeaaaasssseeee keep your emotions in-check and under control. I know you get upset and frustrated and irritated sometimes… we all do. But there’s simply no excuse for spewing your stuff onto everyone else just because “you’re having a bad day.” Huff and puff in private please. Take the necessary steps to first monitor, and then manage the expression of these emotions. There IS a time and a place. Figure out when and where those are to spare the rest of us your drama.
2. MODEL others who’s communication skills you admire. You see them… at work, at home, when you’re having fun, even when you’re not necessarily paying attention. These are the non-tool-types who seem to intuitively know how to handle almost any situation with grace and ease. Be purposeful about seeking out, and learning from these people. Notice the subtleties that separate them from the Tools who are really reactive, from the Cools who are primarily proactive.
3. Finally, MULTIPLY and MAGNIFY your awareness. Pay attention to your attention. This is arguably the most important component. Tools are often oblivious to much of what’s going on around them, and it shows. On a daily basis, there are many situations and circumstances where strategic communication skills can literally change lives when applied appropriately, in the moment. Sound like an overstatement? It’s not. If you cannot “see” what’s really happening, how can you expect to respond appropriately? You can’t. Tools overestimate their communication skills and underestimate the destruction this causes.
Those who refuse to be Tools Recognize, Prepare, and Manuever through the many mazes of effective communication, day in and day out.
Don’t be a Tool. Be a Cool.