Monday, March 12, 2018


This morning, as I took out the trash, my neighbor was out on the sidewalk.  He had removed his cell phone from his ear to yell directly at it staring head on…

”What do you mean it is not a big deal?  It may not be a big deal to you, but it is a big deal to me!” 

While I have no idea what my neighbor was yelling about in context, or to whom - I do know that all humans have probably had this moment occur in their life at some point.

Whether he was yelling at his parents, a friend, his boss, his spouse, or his adult kids – I have no idea.

Whether he was yelling about something of his given away without his permission, being passed over for a promotion, forgotten plans, a betrayal of some sort, or a missed opportunity – I have no idea.

Nevertheless, whatever it was, it mattered to him.  There was a misunderstanding within conflict.

As I went back inside, I thought this was something worth addressing in a blog.  Like my neighbor, I am sure you have had a day in your life many times where …

  • ·         Sometimes you felt misunderstood.
  • ·         Sometimes you felt like no one is listening or you are not heard.
  •       Sometimes you may have felt what mattered did not matter to anyone else.
Were you frustrated and angry?  Did you yell, as my neighbor did?

Or did you feel sad, disconnected, and isolated in your thoughts and existence?

Perhaps you felt rebellious, maybe you felt stuck or even hopeless.

It is natural and human to experience this – whatever your reaction may have been. 

We see all of this inside of arguments just as much as we hear it from the silent voices.

What?  Yes, it is true… not everyone is vocally reactive.  Some people stuff their feelings, suppress them, and do not use their voices causing dis-ease (!), illness, and stress. 

Others will create anxiety and panic; while others will choose aggressive action.

We see healthy humans – even if they are detached from their own ego, at times they will experience these feelings.

The ‘intensity’ of this disconnect or this misunderstanding and the severity of it penetrating your psyche depends heavily on the context, doesn’t it?  

However, there is a bigger a question.  Is your soul as concerned about this as your human?
Take a step back.  Look at that for just a moment.  

Human issues of principle and matter, value and connection rely upon caring.  Caring for the most part is a good thing… it means you stand for something, believe in something, attach your mind, and heart to something.

Although, most humans find conflict when the “something” they care about is…

  • ·         Dismissed by someone else

  • ·         Overridden by the priorities of other “somethings”

  • ·         Not received as something that matters to someone else

  • ·         Invisible/Non-existent

Humans fail in communication when feelings are tossed aside, grudges form, and unhealthy expectations are placed upon other humans to be mind readers if things are not articulated appropriately, clearly or in a timely fashion.  

Expectations are another culprit, as humans often point fingers of blame at other humans if said expectations are not met, when they were also not communicated from the get-go.  

Other conflicts arise when communication occurs, but the other person is not respected, listened to (and heard), received or understood. 

Misunderstanding is LINKED to MORE THAN ONE LINK in your life chain, particularly if you are not the best communicator.

Is it possible to tweak the energy you attach to the outcome of misunderstanding? 

We need to start with empathy, compassion, and comprehending the root of communication internally and externally: 

This is the core foundation of where you can start with yourself to understand how you communicate... and understand how others communicate.  

When we tackle both areas in expressing AND listening, it becomes a full circle exchange.
This exchange then has the power to be rooted in a meaningful and meaning FULL communication exchange.  

The result? 

  • ·         Misunderstandings become fewer
  • ·         Conflict can be resolved
  • ·         Connection can begin with the right footing
  •       Communication becomes a reciprocal exchange where there is a place to correct   misunderstanding for the sake of CLARITY

Being received and respected now has a home.  This is the foundation of where we need to address misunderstanding and conflict. 

Communication is a two way street.  Even the most articulate person can fail at communicating as much as the most open and receptive person can fail at fully comprehending another. 

What we need to establish is TRANSPARENCY of communication at every turn, asking about the context of the exchange to break through what the misunderstanding is about, and root emotions behind the upset at being misunderstood.

Most of the time, emotional upset and frustration never is about the specific conversation at hand, it is usually an accumulation of missed communications over time.
Read that again.


How we humans deal with conflict requires careful consideration for the explosive upset, examining further, many times when another person has not used their voice properly to clear up past misunderstandings, letting them build up to this point.

When we take the time to understand a misunderstanding carefully (literally WITH CARE) and thought, we get to the core matter of what is really being misunderstood and we are able to further dissect the conflict for ultimate clarity and comprehension.

It is arriving at this place; we can work through any situation.  It begins with honesty and truth, trust and authenticity, without fear or judgment.  If we add compassion and take a moment to note the REAL place of where any conflict comes from, we see the other human’s real connection to what matters most within every conversation.

So the next time you are taking out the trash, and you witness your neighbor yelling at the phone, remember... getting louder does not make things clearer. Only when we are clearer in communication do we turn up the volume of our voice truly being heard.