[EXPERIMENT] Communication

Communication is the transfer of information from one person or group to another. One research study showed that communication is 7% words, 38% tone, and 55% non-verbal.

Communication helps us understand others. The inability to communicate effectively can lead to a lot of problems both personally and professionally. While effective communication has been proven to build trust, prevent and resolve problems, and enhances relationships.

I like to use the framework:

Story (state the story in my head is _________)


Desire (what you would like to move forward)

Here is an example of why this is so effective:

Person A: Do you have a minute to talk? 

Person B: Yes. What’s up?

Person A: The story in my head is that you aren’t going to have everything completed for the project deadline tomorrow.

Person B: Oh the story in my head is that my section of the project is complete and we’ve delegated the other two remaining parts to Katy and Jamal. Did you not get the email about this new change last week?

Person A: No, who do I need to talk with about this change? Thanks for clearing this up. I appreciate it.

And just like that, the issue is resolved, frustration is decreased, and there was no need to discuss feelings/thoughts/desires because there was a miscommunication and the thing that Person A was initially mad about it isn’t even real.

Miscommunications happen all of the time, which is why this simple communication strategy is so powerful. If Person A started off with “I feel _______ when you _________”, it assumes wrong-doing and immediately puts people on the defensive.

Yet, sometimes there is truth to our perceptions and feelings, illustrated in this example of:


Thought or Feeling


Person A: Do you have a minute to talk? 

Person B: Yes.

Person A: The story in my head is that you were frustrated or mad at me during the meeting. 

Person B: Yes, I am frustrated because I thought I could count on you to submit the project on time. My manager was not happy with me earlier about this and I’m frustrated because I was counting on you to get this project completed.

Person A: You’re right. I should’ve submitted the project sooner. I’m really sorry.

Person B: I would appreciate if you would talk with my manager and submit the project today. Is this possible? 

Person A: Yes! I will follow up with him and email you when I submitted the project. You can count on me for that. Again, I’m really sorry.

Good communication skills are key to success in life, work, and relationships. We feel less stressed when we have open communication and when issues are resolved. 

So, let’s get intentional about communication! Your experiment is to practice effective communication with a friend, family member, or co-worker using the Story, Thought/Feeling, Desire Framework.


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