Conflict, Part 6 – Multi-Tasking

Have you ever tried to talk to someone about something serious, and felt frustrated when you didn’t have the other person’s full attention?

Now, you might think this is no big deal. After all, how often do you give your full attention to any one thing, unless it’s a really demanding task? And on the other hand, haven’t you been at home, having a meal while you’re texting and the TV is on or music is playing?

This is not meant to put down multi-tasking. It has its place. Moms with little kids have to do it daily. But in moments that matter between two or more people, multi-tasking doesn’t work.

When someone really needs you to listen, do not give part of your attention to anything else. If you can’t give the other person your full attention, just say so, and suggest another time when you can do that.

The bottom line is that multi-tasking while someone is trying connect with you is more destructive than you would think:

– It is highly disrespectful.
– It wastes time and energy.
– It looks like you don’t care about the other person’s problem.
– It suggests that you’d rather be doing something else.
– It is a trust-breaker.
If you say you’re listening, when you’re not giving your full attention, you’re not telling the truth, and that further damages trust.

The next time someone approaches you with a need to talk about something personal or serious, your best bet is to respect their need and respect the relationship. The simple act of giving someone your full attention is a powerful message of caring and concern. And in return, this act of giving will earn you the respect and confidence of the other person.

If you have problems communicating when you’re having conflict with another person, I’m available for a free consultation. All you have to do is call 219-309-3928. Reach out. I’ll be there, and I’ll give you my full attention.

Thanks for reading!