Transforming Communication: Learning to ‘Respond’ and NOT ‘React’ at Home

Transforming Communication by Responding: Responding in a right way to situations is a vital part of behavioral skills and plays a critical role in our professional success. The skill of responding right in a situation can be learned through constant practice in a Home in the most effective manner.

Transforming Communication: Learning to ‘Respond’ and NOT ‘React’ at Home
Transforming Communication: Learning to ‘Respond’ and NOT ‘React’ at Home

Responding in a right way to situations is a vital part of behavioral skills. Most of the times we react to situations. While working in organizations, we require this skill and trainings equip us to some extent to the knowledge how to handle situations. However, the real test is when we come across situations ourselves and need to make decisions and our response can be vital for the success of the project.

The skill of responding right in a situation can be learned through constant practice in a Home. We learn many things while living with people. As a professional and a mother, many times I had reacted wrong to the situation and then later realized my mistake. I learnt many things over the years and my learnings seem to have started from a home.

Managing Emotional Reactions at Home

My college going daughter is often told ‘Why is your room such a mess?’ and getting frustrated with my constant pestering she sometimes retaliates nastily with ‘Leave my room alone, nobody asked you to clean up’.  Nor that she is wrong but her rude reaction sometimes gets to me and I get around to give her my nuggets of wisdom ‘You will be working in professional environment and that reaction of yours will get you in trouble’. My tips to her go something like-

1. Pause before you speak.

2. Keep the tone of your voice cordial. You do not have to be rude.

3. Think of the best possible response in the situation and follow that.

When we speak rudely or nastily, we get a retaliatory reaction and it might cause resentment and hurt. Harsh words tend to break down our relationships. Instead, we can calmly pause and say in the right tone ‘Yes, I’ll do the cleaning soon’. Keeping that tone neutral is important and this might require you to control that irritation or rising anger.

Some situations test our patience and we know in our hearts that patience is a virtue and our reaction can make or break relationships. But many a times situations are frustrating, exasperating or upsetting that controlling that reaction can be hard.

Learning to Respond to Tricky Situations at Home

Most of the time we react wrong to the situation and then regret our reactions. But by that time the harm has been done, arrow had been shot. Just keeping our reaction in check could save so much of our troubles. I must have reacted wrong many a times in my life – personally and professionally. I find it is much harder to check the reaction at home than in the office. In an office we are watched and our response is better as compared to a home where nobody tends to watch us and our response is our choice.

There might be times when mother or father will tell you to study many a times. This might be as they have your best interest in their mind. This might frustrate you and you might react. This is the time to pause. For your rude reaction could break their hearts as they were doing the same with the best of intentions. At this time, think and get a best possible reaction and tell them “Yes, I am already studying’ or ‘have been studying for last 3 hours and you just came in when I just have started to take a break for half an hour” or whatever is right for you.

Practice at Home, Perfect at Office

When we pause and find the best possible way to respond, our patience improves marginally. This is hard but if we keep practicing we can get better at responding to situations. Have any of you in some situation in past regretted your reaction? Yes, then practice the skill at home.

If your response has been wrong and you already have made a mistake, then don’t fret. It is the failures which teach us the biggest lessons. Reflect back and find out what could have been your better reaction. This way you will learn from your mistake and next time your reaction would be better in the situation. You have learned a valuable lesson from the situation.

This ability to pause and control your reaction would really help you in your professional life. It is this skill of responding right which is valuable and can be practiced at Home. Work home integration is about taking Home as a learning and practicing ground of these behavioral skills. Home is the place we all start our journey and we learn many skills living with others in a family, so why not consciously learn the skills of today from there with more awareness.  Taking home as the learning practicing ground helps us evolve and become a better version of ourselves. Let’s get better with responding to situations and with work home integration.

About the Author

Transforming Communication: Learning to ‘Respond’ and NOT ‘React’ at Home Mona Mehra is an activist, a work-home integrator and a risk management professional. She is working on a mission of raising the perception of Home and Homemakers. She conducts workshops and speaks on the topic to create more awareness.

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