Communicating across the board

Funny thing about communication. Some people know how to communicate effectively and others- they close themselves off when the slightest thing doesn’t go their way or something is said that they just don’t like. It is interesting to me to watch this display or dissatisfaction. I say that for these reasons:

1. I talk to a lot of people everyday. I talk to them on the phone, through the computer, through electronic communications, and in person. Over time you learn to read their interactions with you and the silence you receive. The more you get to know someone the more you learn the triggers that are sent. 

2. They don’t know how to react. Instead of talking things through, they jump and react by closing themselves off from the world. Some just need to learn to use their words. 

3. People shut each other out for days/weeks thinking that it is the best way to deal with a situation. For them it is best but for the work situation, collaboration or even a friendship- it is detrimental.

4. Basic understanding is key to self growth. Sometimes you don’t always get what you want but communicating what is needed from others is a risk we all take each and every day. We have to learn to live with what others share, no matter how hard it is to swallow at times.

Those are my four principles for communication when others don’t respond or communicate effectively with each other. Learn to accept when someone says something you don’t necessarily like. You may not know what is going on with their lives at the time and you may not know the situation you’ve put them in if say a meeting was cancelled that was of high importance for work and they’ve been made to back track for you. Rethink your reactions. 

Communication is key and 90% of our day. 

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30,000 foot level

From the 30,000 foot level the city is even more beautiful than on the ground. At night when one flies out of San Francisco all you see are lights. The lights of the city, the white and red bead of lights that form strings of traffic throughout, and the fingers of fog that stretch from the Pacific to the inner heart of the city. It is captivating and peaceful-from up here. 

It has been a long week on the road for me;  presentations, webinars, and meetings all rolled into one. Three different cities, one rental car, two flights, and three hotels. I am ready to go home and get some much needed rest and relaxation. The fall conference season is winding down and while there is no rest for the wicked, may there be rest for the weary. 

For now, I will just enjoy the city lights below as I make my way home through the night. 

A run to remember and then some

I would have to say that this has been a very interesting week of mishaps, screaming children, and full size dogs tucked under airplane seats. Yes, you heard me right… But let me get on with the post to fill you in.

My husband and I traveled to Florida for what should have been our fourth 1/2 marathon and our security nod of the year to receive our RunDisney Coast-to-Coast. We were looking forward to it and come race week watched the weather reports, watched what we ate, drank plenty of water, even took heed to the weather advisory (high) for that evenings race. 

The first signs that something wasn’t going right was the transportation from the hotel was over full with passengers. I think more spectators were hopping on buses and driving in with their family than need be and it caused an issue. Another issue was the transportation wasn’t flowing as smoothly out of the parking lots as years past. We got there with time to spare but barely as bag check was minutes away. 

We checked our bags and the wind started to pick up. Wind out of nowhere and raindrops that made some runners freak out. They are raindrops people and if you ran last years race it was nothing compared to the dumping we got then. The wind though was crazy and chilly. It went from 80+ degrees and 90% humidity to somewhere in the 70s and windy. Then there was the lightening. Great. Nothing like a little lightening to spook people. The announcer started ushering us to our corrals, or we thought that is where we were headed, but in fact we were being evacuated from the area and needed to get to the ESPN buildings. Ok, yea 14,000+ people all at once trying to get there was madness. Where did they put us? A stadium. Some apparently made it to the field house but I was ushered into the stadium. My husband found me but he was outside under an awning because he was in a different corral and we had said good luck already earlier. Crazy. So we sat. And we sat, and we sat for up to an hour. We couldn’t hear the announcers, we met new families, and we watched some really dating people run the bases, go in the dugouts, and go out on the mound of the field.  

 The natives were getting restless. At that point I was beginning to think that we weren’t going to race but it was to start at 10pm and t was just then 10, so there was still hope. If only the weather would cooperate.

Finally we got word to go back to our corrals and that we would start at 10:45. We were also told that it would be a shortened course and no longer a full 1/2 marathon. I was disappointed and upset because I had trained for this run, my times were getting better and I felt confident that I would improve, but with all the setbacks so far in the day it was probably better that the course was shortened. The race started at 11:00pm. My group wouldn’t go for another 22 minutes. I was beginning to feel tired and no longer as excited as I was 2 hours prior even if we had transportation issues. 

   
When the gun and fireworks went off everyone was slow to start but once people got moving there was so much pushing and shoving. People were not as courteous as they were 2 months prior at Disneyland. When you slow to walk get over and let others pass. At this one people just came to full stops, or three elbows as they ran past, or even cut you off so you couldn’t get past them because you didn’t want to slow your pace. You could say excuse me until you were blue and people just didn’t want to budge. I think part of it was they were upset, and the other part was that they need to hold an etiquette course for all runners prior to packet pickup. If you don’t go through it-no packet. People got hurt out there because of others and that isn’t fair to them. What if they can’t run again? What if this was this first experience and it is now ruined? I just think people need to show more consideration. 

The course ended up being somewhere around 6.72-7.23 miles. No one has officially said yet what the race distance was but we got our medals out of it. I guess we need to put Wine and Dine 1/2 half marathon on the medal. My time wasn’t improved either. After everything, it stayed the same as a 10k time would have been. I’m not disappointed though because my knee was swelling, I’ve been having calf issues, shin issues, and it was muggy out there. It’s all good- I’ll take it.

  

My second notation at the beginning was creaming children. Ya know when you are at a theme park for a couple days and your child has grown and off to college or your children are well behaved, well we experienced some children this week who ruled the parents. The best one by far was in front of us on the plane to Atlanta. This child, we will call him “the little monster”, screamed and screamed and then would be good and then screamed. Now this was not an infant, nor was it a child of two or three. The little monster was  at least four or five. He was horrible. No filter at all, wouldn’t sit down in the seat, wouldn’t be quiet, wouldn’t listen and slapped his mother or the woman who appeared to be his mother. The only thing she did when he did that was say ,’hey’. Um… Excuse me but no. You need to nip that in the bud right away sweetheart. She had no control. He continued his screams and they weren’t even about anything. He wasn’t in pain, he wasn’t crying, he wasn’t being restrained, he just screamed. Now I had my headphones in with music on and could still hear the child. My husband who has noise cancelling headphones could still hear the little monster. So the children in the theme parks were annoying at times but this- the little monster was the devil.

The third thing I mentioned was a full size dog tucked under the seats of a plane. You read the correctly- full size. On our second leg back we didn’t see the dog at first until the girl in front of us got up to move and the guy needed to move and all of a sudden there is a big black lab tail wagging. Now small dogs are always on the plane in their little carriers but a full size dog? I know there are seeing eye dogs, comfort dogs etc but none of those badges are on this dog- just a leash. My question for airlines is what if a person paying full fare around them is allergic to a dog? I mean really allergic what happens? I don’t think it is right to have animals in the main cabin area. I love my dog but that is what traveling by car is for so you can make appropriate ‘pit stops’. I don’t know what is happening to the air industry but there is something new everyday.

Ok that is all I have for a weeks excitement. Evacuation, shortened run, little monsters, and dogs on planes. Have a nice day.

Unexpected moments

There are moments when our lives flash before our eyes unexpectedly. It could be because we were frightened, were in an accident, or had a near collision. Whatever it might be there are times that we see faces, people, places, laughter, and sadness all at once mashed together in a split seconds time and then luckily come back to reality. 

Yesterday this happened to me on my run. I was at a three way stop crossing in the crosswalk when a car didn’t stop. I felt the heat of the car on my left leg as I was running through, saw the man gasp as he let go of the steering wheel and heard another woman scream from her truck,’oh my god!’ I was terrified as I tried my best to get through and across. Everything flashed before me. I saw my son laughing and smiling with his girlfriend when we last saw him, my husband cooking dinner in our kitchen, my sister-in-law sitting in her house talking with her boys and smiling, a colleague walking toward me as they entered the building for our meeting and saying hello, my dog and adorable look when she begs, and flowers. Things I care about just quickly flashed before me and then the car stopped and I came out of the moment without a scratch, only a complete renewed look on what life has to offer. 

Don’t take what you have for granted. Live life to the fullest and always, always be present in the moment. Take risks and live your life, you never know when it will flash before you. 

Listening

When we share information and intimate details there is the expectation that the other person is listening, showing empathy, genuinely caring about what is being shared. However, that doesn’t always happen. We are sometimes mistaken and find they aren’t really paying attention to what we are saying at all. It is disconcerting  to find that a conversation important to us is nothing to them. It makes us shutdown, turn away, close them out. It shouldn’t but their reactions speak louder than words. 

There is a bit of hope and solitude that comes with these days and these feelings. We run. We find our inner peace and bear down. Yes it hurts that they don’t share the same world with us and we will have to figure out a way to help them see the light, but for moments in time where we need to just find some peace in the world from their lack of reality- we run. 

It is better to have peace and calm within yourself than to have worry and angst over their reactions.