- Thoughts for inspired living

February 13, 2014


Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 7:26 am

C137116 mThe Grasshopper dropped his left and delivered this gem yesterday: “When your defenses are down, your communication ability is up.”

I don’t know about you, but some of the best responses I’ve ever given were not guarded or scripted. They came from no place of defense or preparation, were on point and sometimes illustrative or intuitive.

When I’ve been defensive, my reactions have been combative, missed their mark, and were predictably ineffective.

To me, being defensive is like walking into the wind towards a manure factory. You’re not going to come out smelling like a rose.

“Defend yourself at all times” is sage advice in the boxing ring but it almost guarantees you being knocked out everywhere else.

I’m not suggesting not to defend yourself, just stop being defensive. There’s a difference. Defensive is filled with justification which, almost always, leads to a no win debate.

Defending yourself is more question oriented. When someone delivers a verbal haymaker, it’s more in your interest to ask a question. My hypnosis teacher, Dr. Dave Dobson used to counsel this: “Respond to a critical remark with a question.” He also added to ask the question in neutral, meaning don’t have an implied “screw you” in it, and ask with genuine curiosity.

There is an openness in that approach which can lead to opportunities you may not see if hunkered down with your defenses.

You genuinely have a chance of going somewhere rather than going nowhere again when you drop your defenses.

If you find yourself defending yourself too often, you may want to get curious about asking questions. It can open you up to improvement, insight and a level of communication that you may never get to by being boxed in by your defenses.

All the best,


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