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In Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP):

The Meaning Of Your Communication is The Response You Get

Ever have a time when you were sure you were being totally clear, but the other person heard something else?

One way to deal with that is to blame: it’s their fault they didn’t get it. But then they didn’t get it, you didn’t get it, nobody got anything.

Another way is to take responsibility: that’s interesting, I wonder how else I can say it so they’ll get it instead.

By adopting the belief that the meaning of your communication was the response you got instead of the communication you delivered regardless of their response, you become more real-world by being responsive to feedback and flexible by adapting to change.

How Do You Use This?

You could recite poetry all day to your spouse, for example, to communicate your love, but if her response is total boredom, you didn’t achieve your intended message.

It would then be a waste to blame her (‘she just doesn’t get it’) for you not achieving your intended outcome, because you have a chance to step back and learn something.

What if a simple ‘I love you’ is enough to get her melting in your arms? You’ve learnt a much faster way to get your intended message across than reading poetry all day 😛

The Meaning of Your Communication is The Response You Wished You Got

The opposite of this belief sounds a bit silly when phrased this way, doesn’t it? Anytime you or I blame someone else for not getting what we wanted to say and don’t take responsibility for it though, and think our communication was perfect and they were dumb-asses for not getting it, it’s as good as saying the meaning of our communication is the response we wished we got.

If The Meaning of Your Communication is The Response You Get, What Would Be Different For You?

Some schools of communication say that both parties in a communication have 50% responsibility each for the communication. In NLP, we shoot a little higher, and take 100%.

If, whenever you don’t get your intended message across, feel misunderstood or unheard, you go ‘it’s them, they just don’t get me’, then you’ve only learnt to communicate in one way: yours.

But if you take the belief that the meaning of your communication is the response you get, to take responsibility and be willing to be more flexible than your audience could be so you can catch them at all and any angles, you learn how to communicate in two ways: yours and theirs.

And eventually, yours, and theirs, theirs, theirs and theirs too.

This is what sets great communicators, teachers, mentors, coaches, counsellors and speakers apart. Instead of labelling their audience as ‘slow’, ‘stupid’, ‘resistant’, ‘sleepy’, and so on, they take responsibility and go, ‘how can I communicate to them in a way that they’d get what I want to say, regardless?’

If you were to believe that the meaning of your communication is the response you get, how would your life be different?

NLP 101 Series:

NLP 101: What is NLP? Part 1
NLP 101: What is NLP Special for The Super NLP Hardcore
NLP 101: What is NLP? Part 2
NLP 101: So Dark The Con Of NLP
NLP 101: How NLP Changed My Life
NLP 101: The Map Is Not The Territory
NLP 101: There Is No Failure Only Learning Experience
NLP 101: Every Behaviour Has A Positive Intention
NLP 101: The Meaning of Your Communication is The Response You Get
NLP 101: You Cannot Not Communicate
NLP 101 Thoughts: You Cannot Not Change The World
NLP 101: People Are Always Making The Best Choices They Have
NLP 101: People Are Not Broken
NLP 101: You Cannot Not Communicate: The Pygmalion Effect
NLP 101: Everyone Already Has All The Resources They Need
NLP 101: There Are No Resistant Listeners, Only Inflexible Speakers
NLP 101: Life Is A Series of Systems