This T.H.I.N.K concept is a gentle reminder to consider what we say before we say it. It allows us to communicate from a place of thoughtfulness and consideration. By employing the T.H.I.N.K. process, our messages come across more clearly and are better received and as such, our relationships benefit. It allows us to be aware of how emotions play a part in our communication.
I have a friend who always uses this theory, especially in tough situations. It doesn’t mean she can’t communicate her feelings and needs but it enables her to do so in a way that doesn’t inflame the situation while getting her message across in a gentle, kind, yet firm manner with everyone in her life. This is one of the things I greatly admire, appreciate and respect about her.
How we say things as well as what we say play huge roles in our ability to communicate. Keeping in mind the T.H.I.N.K. theory to help guide us as we speak with friends, family, coworkers, managers, strangers, children, telemarketers and everyone we encounter on a daily basis.
T – Is it true?
Is our message fact or is it an exaggeration coming from a place of frustration, irritation or anger? If what we want to say is indeed true, move to the next step.
H – Is it helpful?
Will our comments assist someone, make their situation easier or benefit them in some way? If we’ve got true and helpful checked, now it’s time to consider….
I – Is it inspiring?
Does our message lift someone up or will it result in irritation, resentment or bringing someone down? Use your words to buoy those around you, encouraging them on their quest for a new career, new fitness regime or whatever it is that makes them happy. If you must share a criticism, it’s always wise to start with positive inputs and lead into what could be done better next time.
True, helpful and inspiring? Great! Now we move onto….
N – Is it necessary?
Does the person we wish to communicate with need to hear what we want to say? It is something that’s necessary for them to know? Just because we wish to tell them, it is still important that we are should be sure that it is something they need to know. If our comments also pass this test, move on to…
K – It is kind?
We all have an inside voice and an outside voice but there are times when the inside voice breaks through to be heard by the outside world. Often those comments can be hurtful. Or, when we are annoyed or angry, we blurt out things that end up being hurtful.
If we all take a moment to run through this list before we communicate, especially in challenging, heated or charged situations as well as with our family (where we tend to ‘let loose‘), we would feel great about who we are in the world, our messages would be more effective and better received, and our relationships would be stronger for it.
So the next time we have something to say, run through the T.H.I.N.K. concept beforehand. It takes a bit of practice but in the long run, the benefits are immeasurable.