Have you ever had someone react differently than you expected to something you said? We all have and there is something you can do about it. Anthony Robbins says “The meaning of your communication is the response you get.” If you don’t like the response you are getting, change your approach. Okay but how and how do you not come off as a phony, a wimp or a suck-up?
A portion of Master Resilience Training is the way. MRT is the third component of Comprehensive Soldier Fitness training developed by Martin E.P. Seligman. The program trains drill sergeants on how to embrace resilience and pass on the knowledge. MRT has three parts – building mental toughness, building signature strengths, and building strong relationships.
The building strong relationships section, based on the work of Shelly Gable, describes the four styles of responding to people:
- Active constructive (authentic, enthusiastic support)
- Passive constructive (laconic support, i.e. the use of few words expressing support)
- Passive destructive (ignoring the event)
- Active distributive (pointing out the negative aspects of the event)
Here is an example of basketball teammates. Joe tells Sam, “Hey, I was selected as one of the co-captains.”
Active constructive – “That’s great. What else do you have to do as one of the captains? Has it been announced? What did the Coach say about why you deserved it?”
Passive constructive – “That’s nice.”
Passive destructive – “I saw a funny video online. Look at this…”
Active destructive – “You know you don’t get anything extra for it and it will take up a lot of your fun time…”
Being mindful of your response style and working on having more responses that are active constructive, can improve how you are perceived. You can be seen as being real and being nice.
[Image: Flickr user SashaW]