This week let’s return a bit more to the original gist of our Better Endings theme. How might creatively revising a movie ending or the outcome of an historical event, for example, empower us to constructively apply that same revisionist approach to improving situations in our lives? So this week, let’s consider how we might apply the revisionist principle of Better Endings to situations involving COMMUNICATION. This might apply especially to situations where communication has gone awry or where you might tend to falter in specific kinds of communication situations.
For example, what about email communication snafus? I remember how after email had recently come out in the 90’s, it was difficult to hold a genuine conversation because we (myself, anyway) had not yet learned how to express our feelings well through email. I nearly lost a longtime, good friend because we each thought the other was sounding uncharacteristically gruff or crisp with each other over some trivial matter. I don’t even remember what the issue was that blew up to the point that we stopped interacting at all for over a year! Let me practice a Better Endings revision of how our communication might have gone differently with greater awareness, or mindfulness, on both of our parts.
Scenario: Over the telephone (Lindy in Colorado, Molly in Arizona):
Molly: Well, you should know I didn’t mean it that way.
Lindy: I know! Isn’t that awful how easy it is for people to misread each other’s tone of voice in email? I apologize for assuming anything less than the best of you, Molly.
M: Should we just stop using email altogether?
L: I don’t know. Is there some way we could communicate better with email, in a more personal way? It is convenient, day to day.
M: Well, some of my friends use those emoticons. Maybe we could try adding some of those to express our feelings better.
L: Okay. I’ll look for some. We could also maybe try putting more context into what we are saying.
M: You mean like just explaining ourselves better instead of being ‘short’?
L: Hey, I’m the Shortie! Just kidding. But that’s part of it too I guess; we should feel free to check each other’s intentions if we see something we might be misinterpreting.
M: Ok. Let’s not let it get away from us like that again. I do care about you—you know that, don’t you?
L: Of course I do, Molly. I think of you as a friend for life!
M: Me, too.
Tomorrow I’ll provide a list of Writer’s Prompts around this weekly theme of applying Better Endings to communication situations. Feel free to Comment with your insights and send stories! Thanks for reading! 🙂 🙂 :-)))