This week’s Mindful Communication activity is a practice using Mindful Words. When we are communicating mindfully, it is important to think about the words we are using. The way we say something can have a big effect on the person we are saying it to. This makes it important to think before we say things, especially if those things have the potential to either make someone very happy or very sad.
An example of when you can use Mindful Words is when you are angry about something. Imagine that your friend did something that made you very upset, and all you feel like doing is yelling at them about how bad of a friend they are. How do you think that will make your friend feel?
Your friend will most likely become upset because they feel like they are being attacked, and they will probably respond to you by being angry too. Now you both are angry, and you might even be more upset that before.
Lets look at the same situation using Mindful Words. Imagine that you are approaching the same friend with a different perspective. Before you say something that could upset your friend, think of how you could explain how you’re feeling with Mindful Words rather than expressing it by yelling. When tell your friends how things they did made you feel, they can understand your emotions better and have an idea of how to avoid doing that in the future because they know it hurt you. This way of showing your emotions keeps both of you relaxed and open to Mindful Listening.
Think about a situation when you could have used Mindful Words. It will probably be a time when you felt an intense emotion and did not think before letting the person who made you feel that way know how you feel. Write down a short description of the situations and then answer the following questions:
- How did the person respond to you?
- How did you want them to respond to you?
- How do you think it made them feel?
- How did you want them to feel?
Now think of how you could have used Mindful Words in this situation to better communicate how you were feeling. What words could you have chosen to let that person know how they made you feel and what they did to cause you to feel that way? Base your Mindful Words off of the questions above.
- How do you think they would respond to you?
- How do you think it would make them feel?
Mindful Words gives you the power to transform a situation that might have ended in a different way otherwise. They help you communicate your thoughts and feelings to others in a way that makes everyone involved feel understood.
Teacher’s Tip: It can be particularly helpful to remind students to use Mindful Words during conflict resolution between peers.
Student’s Tip: You can practice using Mindful Words in any conversation, as it is an important part of Mindful Communication. Try practicing Mindful Words as often as possible, and pair it with Mindful Listening.
Student’s Tip: You can practice using Mindful Wffords in any conversation, as it is an important part of Mindful Communication. Try practicing Mindful Words as often as possible, and pair it with Mindful Listening.