counselling, psychotherapy, life coaching, supervision

The 100% rule for good communication between partners and others

For productive, rewarding (challenging) conversations, try observing this little rule. Warning: It only sounds simple!

Each party to the conversation holds themselves and the other(s) to be 100% responsible for what they do and for what they feel.

Among other things, this rule vetoes our holding someone else responsible for what we do. That would rule out parental or military authority, so there seem to be exceptions. But of course, a parent or a general is not interested in conversation when they are giving orders. Orders are a one-way communication. The rule also vetoes our holding someone else responsible for what we are feeling. Which doesn’t mean that we necessarily shouldn’t feel what we feel, eg. anger, just that what we do with the anger is our responsibility – whether and how we express it or contain it or act on it.