Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Of Thoughtful Communication

Being online. Isn't it wild?

I mean, you send a long, newsy, witty, chatty email to a friend or relative, asking thoughtful questions about their days and telling them what's new with you, your family and your life, perhaps sending pictures, even. But what you get back (if an email comes back, even) is maybe, "Hi. Got your email. We're ok here. Love, Moomoo."

Communication. The good kind requires time, effort and practice and I'm, frankly, still working at it, but I like to think I'm better at it than I was, say, five years ago.

It's tempting to go all bonkers and steamy-eared about the people who never seem to 'get it.' The ones who whine, "It's just too hard to write more than two sentences. My brain freezes."

Yet as with many areas in this life, I think what matters is that we keep asking ourselves, "How well am I communicating? How thoughtful am I toward others?," rather than ranting, "The people in my life are thoughtless, clueless clods and they can just sit waiting for another email from me till they get dusty. So there."


Want to know the instant, easy way to become more thoughtful and a better email writer/communicator? Just remember this one simple Bible verse:

"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

Write the kinds of emails/blog or Facebook comments you'd like your friends to write to you. Ask the kinds of questions you'd like someone to ask of you. Write as often as you'd like your friends to write to you.

Show the love toward others you'd enjoy receiving from them. But, yes, tweak it all a bit to meet their custom-made needs, which requires some real listening on our part.

But I can do that. You can do that. I think we all can do that, especially with some practice. And patience. And doing it all as unto God, for He designed us to live that way and He knows it's all possible with Him.


Want to save money on groceries? Here's one of my favorite lists of how-to's.


Amari said...

You are so right! You've given me something to think about. It's so easy to get used to abbreviating your thoughts and words on the internet in order to quickly move on to the next post or the next website. I struggle with being open and honest, and with giving out more than "pat" comments to emails. I think this is one of the reasons I still really love letter writing and good old fashioned letters in my mailbox. I love beautiful stationery, beautiful handwriting, scented letters. Maybe letter writing needs to make more of a comeback.

Donetta said...

Great post
You really got me in the headlights
Often by the time I sit down to email and all the exhaustion hits and I get real lazy
perhaps that's the clue
"by the time I sit down"
Friendship and correspondence takes time.
Sitting down with the intention of giving that tiem, to where it is not time taken but given.
Like a pedicure or manicure is neglected we owe it (I oue it to myself) to give time to this area of life.
Once I too had a sweet place right by the front door. This was my little writting desk. The post man would come to the door every day. There would be at least a card or a notee on lovely paper awaiting him.
I would on days even leave him a fresh baked treat. Now the mail box is down on the corner. I wake at the mail carrier once or twice a week if I drive by...

Time has been 'taken' from this generation. We have all stood by and forgotten how to give. We have let it all be taken.

Thanks for the reminder to Give myself and my friends time.
Sitting here there are so many distraction, other applications, sites and such.
When I would sit at that little desk the whole world would stop.

Keri said...

Amen! I just found your blog via my glad I did! boy can I relate to this post! Cant wait to now go read up in your archives! So wish I didnt have to get up for work in the am...

Pat said...

All the comments before me stated my feelings so well.
I feel expecially ignored when I've emailed what would be considered personal with pictures and such and I get no acknowledgement that it's even been received.
Good manners, where art thou?

Anonymous said...

Dear Debra,
I agree I like a response, no matter how short, if I have written to someone and have asked a direct question and need a reply.

But for the most part, if I take the time to invest myself, I do it because I want to, not because I am expecting the same thing back.

I don't mean to be obstinate, but I have to say that I find short to-the-point messages a good thing.

Amari said...

Off topic, but I forgot to add that I would love to sit at the table pictured in your blog header, sipping tea and looking out the window. That is a beautiful photo. ♥

Unknown said...

I am one of the people that when I email someone I start looking for a reply almost immediately. Mostly that does not happen & I get disappointed. Also if what I read brings back a memory I usually share what the memory was all about making my emails a little long at times.