About Misinterpretation

It could be you, your message or the environment (context) that is causing the problem. Many people go through life thinking they’re good at reading people’s non-verbal signals. They’ll take a single action by another person and, lacking the requisite empathy to dig further, they’ll ascribe it to a particular feeling — with no back-up information. Needless to say, these people may end up antagonising others (‘No I’m not bored with what you’re telling me; I’m just tired’ … ‘No you’re not — you’re bored, I can tell’ … ‘Will you just leave it for now’ …).

James Borg – Body Language

Normally, I don’t comment on quotes, but this time is different. I picked up this book while traveling and I have enjoyed it very much so far. I have read a few books about non-verbal communication until now, but this has been a key issue that I have had to deal with on numerous occasions. Someone finally spelled it out.

To me, personally, this is one of the worst stunts to pull ever. It hurts, it’s demeaning and it does not solve any conflict. And it doesn’t matter how understanding and patient you are. This low form of communication is something you cannot solve. Step away. Leave. Don’t look back.

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