The greatest challenge is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution.

Friday, July 12, 2013

A Simple Path to Wiser Communication

We are conditioned to react quickly to things. We live in a brainwashed culture of urgency where the media and corporate America play off of our natural inclination to pay attention to something that appears urgent.

Unfortunately, this leads to a natural state of continuous fractured attention and so we often don’t think before we speak.

Here is a simple practice to significantly reduce the possibilities of putting your proverbial foot in your mouth:

Simply take a breath before you speak.

It’s one thing to intellectually be able to recall a good practice; it’s quite another thing to have it as a regular conscious experience in everyday life.

Begin weaving this practice into your everyday life. 

Your reactions will get better and better.


Because, as Viktor Frankl said, 

“Between stimulus and response there’s a space, in that space lies our power to choose our response and in our response lies our growth and freedom.”

When we take a breath we widen the space between stimulus and response, opening our mind to the various choices that are there. We are aware of other choices that may be wiser than our immediate reactive one.

You will feel more freedom and grounded in the responses you give.

This simple, but often not easy, practice is a path to wiser communication and relationships.


Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist in private practice in West Los Angeles and is author of the upcoming book The Now Effect, co-author of A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook

Foreword by Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of the Mindful Solutions audio series, and the Mindfulness at Work™ program currently being adopted in multiple multinational corporations.

Check out Dr. Goldstein's acclaimed CD's on Mindful Solutions for Stress, Anxiety, and Depression,Mindful Solutions for Addiction and RelapsePrevention, and Mindful Solutions for Success and Stress Reduction at Work. -- "They are so relevant, I have marked them as one of my favorites on a handout I give to all new clients" - Psychiatrist.

If you're wanting to integrate more mindfulness into your daily life, sign up for his Mindful Living Twitter Feed. Dr. Goldstein is also available for private psychotherapy.


A Simple Path to Wiser Communication