My incredible grandson, Ethan
“To effectively communicate, we must realize that we are all different in the way we perceive the world and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others.” ~ Anthony Robbins
Today, my grandson, Ethan, began teaching me beginner Spanish. In a few weeks he will be 14. I’m on the south end of 50. He is amazing, to say the least. Okay, I know, I’m his Nonni, but still, others agree that he is beyond smart.
Ethan is what I call an old soul. His maturity is way beyond his years. He can keep up his end of a conversation with any adult. However, if an adult starts “talking down” to him like he is what he is—14— communication stops. He simply will not talk like a junior high kid.
I’m trying to learn a verbal language, and this old puppy is having a hard time learning new tricks. However, one language I learn readily is the language of the soul. It is the understanding of different personalities, different values, and the way this determines the actions of those around us.
I’m sure you have heard of personality-type assessments such as the Birkman Method, The Four Humors, Myers – Briggs, and my favorite, The Elements. All are designed to help us understand why others react and respond the way they do, and gives us tools to work with others and not against them.
There is another language that is important to learn, the Love Language. Dr. Gary Chapman wrote The Five Love Languages and I recommend it to everyone. From him I learned that different things say “Love” to different people. While I express love in my language to someone else, it may not be their language and they may act indifferent to my expression because they do not understand that is what I’m doing. Then I feel rejected. For instance, my love language is words of affirmation (go figure), and my husband’s is physical touch. So while I’m affirming him (thinking I’m showing him love), he may just nod his head because he understands love as a hug or a pat on his arm. He may be hugging me (thinking he is showing me love) and I smile and continue with what I’m doing because I understand affirmation as love.
Why learn about different personalities and love languages? Two reasons, to understand and communicate. Think of how much better this world would be if everyone tried to honestly understand the other and communicate on his or her level. And while we cannot force everyone to do this, we can start with ourselves. Another reason is to understand ourselves. Why we react or respond in different situations. It helps us to understand and use our strengths to a better advantage. Also, it exposes our weaknesses in order for us to overcome them.
For the next few weeks, I want to explore the different personalities. As for the love languages, if you’d like more information go to:
Carl Gustav Jung said, “Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.” Isn’t that the truth? Let’s make the effort to learn the languages of the soul and make our world a better place.
Next week: Water People
Next week: Water People