Retreat is an active word. It’s not a sign of weakness, but a sign that you are in-charge of your reactions. It shows you know when to do something differently. To me, the word RETREAT breaks down into the following powerful actions and helps me to move forward in the direction I need to go even if it’s not the direction I originally wanted to.
Return to a safe space
Experience feelings associated with current stress
Take time out
Recover your strength
Experiment with new ideas
Activate a new plan
Test it out
Have you ever found retreating to be a successful strategy to move forward?
How do you communicate differently online than in person, if at all? How do you communicate emotion and intent in a purely written medium?
Communication is key. It is at the centre of everything we do. To me all forms of communication need to be consistent—written, verbal and body language. How I communicate is my brand. Working in mental health I nurture moving forward, making changes to encourage growth—both in myself and others.
Several years ago I did not realise how different my written and spoken word naturally were. I had just begun writing my book and given my first draft chapters to my collaborator. After reading them her response was—”the information is great but it needs to be in your voice that is what people connect with.” She was right. My written word was stiff and formal. It didn’t flow and wasn’t welcoming. This was a pivotal point in my writing career long before I started blogging. The way I communicate orally and in writing work when they are the same. My writing voice needed to change.
Now everything thing I write except formal work document as based on a conversational tone—my natural voice. I don’t use the shortened text message for of communication—I don’t like it. If I am writing a text message I write it exactly as I would ask it—clear and concise—so there is no misunderstanding. When using emotion and intent I describe the situation using the writing formula—show don’t tell.
If I am unsure how to phrase a sentence in my voice I memorise the sentence and re write it how I remember it. From my experience this puts it in the order I say it. This is particularly helpful when I am writing speeches. I rarely use long complicated sentences—they confuse me. I like easy to understand communication—in life and on-line.
My experience is by using this method even when I need to say difficult things they are taken well and the change I want is nurtured without the other person getting defensive. My aim is to respect all people I interact with—known or unknown—bringing inspiration and positivity into their world and hopefully brightening their day.
Have you ever been white water rafting? My husband and I went on the Tongariro River, New Zealand, to celebrate my 50th birthday. It was amazing. We were feeling brave, so we tackled the No.3 rapids—higher up the river.
- The exhilaration
- The rivers natural beauty
- Silence—except our screams of course
- Unknown challenge—would we fall out as we rode the waves
- The twists and turns
Our guide told us the river is different everyday. He can never take the rapids for granted. They change constantly and if he isn’t focusing on the rapids, everyone’s life could be in danger—heads and rocks don’t mix well.
The mighty Tongariro River
All eight passengers on our boat were from different countries, so during our quiet times on the river, we were able to learn more about the world.
If ever you get the chance to go white water rafting—take the risk. It will change how you think about life. You have absolutely no control over what happens and it is the best. Handing over trust to the boat’s guide allows you to enjoy the ride and take notice of your surroundings.
Lower Tongariro River
Thanks for the experience!