About hard conversations you will encounter in life and business
You’ve been in this situation before.
You wrap up your day full of meetings and you long to just take a bath and curl up in bed. Before you could even take a break, you decided to pull the trigger on one of your relationships.
Pausing for a moment, you contemplate your life choices. Am I going to regret this? And half of the time, you know you always make the right choice.
With sweaty palms and dried lips, you type someone a message, an email, a DM… “Can we talk?” With trembling fingers, you hit send.
And then it lingers…
Pacing back and forth, you wait for a response.
You glance on your phone hoping (but not really) to finally see them active online — their last login, their green active button, the double checks to know they’ve seen your message — just any clue that they’ve received it. And then you have a split second of doubt.
Shall I unsend the message? They haven’t seen it yet. If they read it, can I just say, that it’s nothing and I sent it to the wrong person? Did I just do something that I’ll regret later? That my sons and daughters will regret in generations to come?
Now, you start to doubt your decision to finally request the conversation you have been longing for — the conversation that you need.
At this point, I say — Congratulations.
You passed the test of being a decent human being. Some people bail on these situations. Some people just ghost. They leave the person on the other end hanging on what happened and what went wrong without knowing why.
You, on the other hand, decided to be a decent human being. You picked up your phone, wrote that message, and requested a defining moment in your relationship.
So kudos to you. Your courage is admirable. Not a lot of people have a high tolerance for other people’s BS. And yet here you are trying to “fix“ things.
And now here you are, waiting for that response.
Finally, you see their name pop up in your inbox.
You wait for a few minutes before reading their response. Don’t want to seem overeager when in fact, you are.
Back to sweaty palms and dried lips, you open and read it.
“Sure”, they say. And you send each other a calendly url.
Kidding aside, you know what happens next. Either you chat and “talk“ or you pick up the phone or you meet somewhere and settle things… and in a broken voice but full of conviction, you decide to break it down for them.
Let’s be real about it…
“The Talk” is one dreaded moment in any relationship — whether business or personal.
Asking for “The Talk“ is asking to fix things. It’s putting your foot on the ground and telling someone — You overstepped my boundaries and I have had enough.
The expected outcome? It could IMPROVE the relationship — communication is a vital ingredient and all that. OR it could potentially END a relationship.
There is no in-between here. Yes, you could stretch your patience where you try to understand their side of the story but at the end of it, the tension is already there. The only way to break it is to go to the next level — IMPROVE IT. Or END IT.
For me, the important thing is that you don’t end up in a Mexican standoff — “a confrontation in which no strategy exists that allows any party to achieve victory“.
Somehow, after “The Talk“ both sides should win. The goal is positive-sum for any healthy relationship to move forward.