MARCH 18, 2009

Think before you ignore
       With so many ways to communicate these days, we often face two extremes: people that wonít leave us alone, and others that ignore us.
       You can call, email, text, message online, and some people choose to utilize all these methods or none at all. Either way, the outcome is frustrating.
       Weíve all been there. You have someone in your life that you donít necessarily want to hear from all the time because they either complain about stuff or something else thatís annoying. In those cases, many people will ignore the person.
       Is that considered bad communication? Well, itís not really communication at all. It is in a sense of trying to give the person a hint to leave you alone. But is it effective? Again, I guess it can be, but good communication would be addressing the issue with the person and telling them to change their attitude or else you donít want to hear from them anymore.
       Now we flip to the other extreme: youíre trying to get a hold of someone and your calls or messages go unanswered.
       You have a simple question you need an answer to and maybe itís not worth a phone call so you send a quick text and anxiously wait for a reply. You donít get one, so you send an email. No reply from that. You make a call and get voice mail.
       But all of a sudden youíve turned into the person I described at the beginning of the column. See my point here? Through lack of communication you are now prompting the behaviour that irritates you. Itís not fair, is it?
       I liken it to being face to face with someone. A person asks you a question and you probably wonít stare blankly at them and say nothing. In todayís digital world, thatís kind of what youíre doing by not replying to those texts, emails and voice mails.
       This concludes our communications lesson for today, folks.
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