It’s that time of year. Christmas music fills the stores, the elevators, and the lyric “Do you hear what I hear” is all around us.
As a communication coach, I find this to be a provocative and intriguing question. The reason for that is – how many times have you been in a conversation or in a meeting where you’ve asked yourself – “Do you hear what I hear?” To you what’s being stated seems very clear. But from your perspective, someone else just doesn’t seem to grasp the concept or they have a completely different interpretation. Perhaps for some of you, probably not too many, this has even happened in your personal relationships. You probably just laughed out loud because of the understatement of that last sentence. How many of you are thinking about your spouse right now? I digress.
What do you bring to the table?
We all bring to the table our own education, experience, baggage, philosophies, etc. These things are what shape how we interpret conversations and life. It’s the reason there are so many different answers when people are asked to identify what’s in the Rorschach blot.
Different people also think with different parts of the brain causing some to be more analytical, some more emotional, while others are more abstract and creative. All of these factors play into how we “hear,” aka interpret things, both visually and audibly. Don’t believe this? Just think back to some of those conversations you’ve had where it seemed a different language was being spoken.