More Comforting Less Clicking Summer Challenge
Last week a close friend of mine received a not so very nice linkedin note from a previous coworker and “social media friend.” The message was very intentional but certainly not relational. It had been pretty simple for this person to easily click their way thru this not so nice message process – click the recipient’s name in their contact list, click to add an article link, click some letters to create two harmful sentences, click to send. Boom! Off it went bringing with it a nasty punch!
Click to open – boom! My friends heart sank as he read this not so nice note from someone he knew.
I ran into my friend later that afternoon and he appeared upset. I asked him if everything was okay. He told me about the message. I listened as he shared that it was hurtful and didn’t make sense because he had helped this person so many times before. I asked if he was going to respond – he wasn’t sure.
While my friend was definitely in need of some comfort - it also appeared that the sender might be having some issues and was really the one in need of comfort - to be that nasty was almost a cry for help. So, we discussed some comforting options. Instead of sending back nastiness, he decided to take the approach of reaching out and sending back comfort.
How was comfort sent back?
1. He analyzed the situation and realized the sender was the one was in need of comfort based on the message content.
2. He crafted a thoughtful message for this person.
3. Even though comforting this person was awkward he sent the message.
4. He focused on issues this person might have been experiencing that may have driven them to send the message in the first place instead of focusing on himself.
5. He reflected back and felt better because he was thoughtful and tried to connect in a more meaningful way.
Did it help the original sender? Hopefully - but that’s uncertain because they did not respond to this act of comfort – but it certainly helped my friend who chose to comfort versus clicking off a nasty response.
Last week the challenge was given to create phone free social summer gatherings so you can be in the moment and be present. This week's summer challenge is to think about how you can respond by comforting when someone is not being so nice instead of just clicking off a thoughtless response to one up their nastiness. Comforting others can be awkward, especially if they are being nasty to you, but if you know how to identify someone in need of comfort and have the skills to work through it, not only can you help that person – you can help yourself too.
Jill Bornstein is the Co – Founder & CFO of Inspiring Comfort. Learn more about how you can comfort and connect with others at www.inspiringcomfort.com