In my office, this week alone I have heard about 5 arguments, dozens of bits of misinformation, and plenty of irritation — all over text messages that resulted in terribly poor communication.
So, what’s the difficulty? How come someone ELSE could be so ridiculous to miss-understand YOU?
Let’s analyze this issue! By dissecting the THREE elements of communication.
-ONE…. 7% of what we communicate to another person/people is with actual WORDS.
-TWO…. 38% of what we communicate to another person/people is with TONE OF VOICE.
-THREE…. 55% of what we communicate to another person/people is NON-VERBAL
If you are reasonably good with math, you can easily see that ONLY 7% of what you write in a text gets clearly communicated! OUCH!
So even if you are the most clear, concise, brilliant communicator…oh, and can type accurately (!) the majority of what you want to get across with your text message is missing!
If you are skeptical, test what you pay attention to in an actual face to face conversation. You LISTEN attentively to voice tone and the shift up and down of volume and intensity; and you are drawn like a magnet to facial expressions, posture, physical movement toward you or away from you, and eye movement — that’s if you are actually paying attention and not looking at your phone during a conversation! And if that’s the case, no wonder you have tense relationships!
In other words, 93% of what you intend to communicate is lost in a text message! Yes, 93%!
If I sound a tiny bit harsh about texting behavior, it’s because I see so much unnecessary distress in my clients that comes from this dismal form of communication. Do I text? Yes, I do. With a simple sentence to clarify or change the time of an appointment, a meeting, to exchange basic factual information like an address or a contact. Beyond that, I suggest you try more face to face interactions for a while and then assess how much your relationships calm down and improve. Seriously, it’s more of an issue than you might think!
And as always I believe you deserve to reduce the stress in your relationships, in your life, as much as possible!
Listen to Dr. Linda Moore and Mike Manko discuss the pitfalls of texting, as a dependable means of communication, on this SteveAndMikeRadio.com podcast.