Words on the surface appear to be the major means by which we humans communicate but in order to understand people, we need to pay closer attention to subtleties.
Growing up, the major language I got to hear was my native language which was far from close to English, for some funny reason I’m not fluent in that language either, however, I was quite good with what is considered the Nigerian central language, nope, not English, it is Pidgin.
The language consists of a terrible mix of English, Igbo, Hausa, Yoruba, and I think there are even elements of German and Italy in it.
Everything you say is right, there is no wrong or right, all you have to do is blend these languages and even add a spice of your own code language and say whatever thing you wanted, it always goes down like a cold drink. All that mattered is that you communicate what was on your mind
For instance, if I wanted to say a girl was greedy, I would simply say ”she too day do open-eye ”, forget about the meaning of the individual words, what I was trying to express is that greedy look on her face, that wideness of eye when someone sees something they like and want to poses it by hook or crook. Like when you imagined stuffing that entire cake into your mouth
Think about smiling
Smiling packs such a powerful punch because it expresses on its own, a spectrum of all sort of likeness, a wide smile stretching to both ears means in an instant that I love your dress, shoes, face, demeanor, etc.
But who goes about listing all these? that’s the point. people express emotions by touching, getting closer, gifting, spending time, sweating, stammering, nodding, etcetera.
Because of the need to express very strong emotions many people resolve to use big words, and it seems, the better you get to know a language the better you can, you know, express yourself. But this isn’t always true
The whole thing is about self-expression. Its also the reason a single masterpiece painting on the wall can tell entire story words just couldn’t, same with virtually anything related to art
When you watch three boys play, you may find them using curse words on each other, and depending on their age and environment, vulgar words may even find it’s way into the conversation, but everyone knows it’s a medium of expression, and trying to stop this is a nice attempt at masking things.
And so, I write this article today to remind you.
- If someone said something that hurt you badly, don’t just pick the word and start saying for instance, he called me a fool, or stupid, no, try to find out the emotions behind, surely, behind such words lies a nasty emotional baggage, but that is the trash you should be focusing on, not the words.
- And that leads to the second realization, which is, whose baggage is it?
I remembered when growing up people almost always saw me as a person with a hard heart, like those of the bad guys in the movies, however, what amazed me was my inability to kill a chicken until I was like 20. I guess they misinterpreted my quietness for coldness
Sometimes, people see us and say, oh, I know this type, they are the type that tries to look good in front of everyone but would strike when nobody is looking and steal all the money or impregnate all the girls, etc., whatever their perception of evil is….but that actually has nothing to do with who we are. It’s their own perceptions that they are projecting onto us
- And that leads to the third and most important realization, which is, you must detach yourself from what people say as much as you are trying to see the meaning and emotion behind each of their words, whether laced with honey or poison
When friends talk, they are actively shearing emotions, letting each other know how they feel, empathize and if possible find a solution. The words scarcely matter, and that’s the reason Dan Lok can use the word “fuck” when talking about business, and Mark Manson can also use the same word, though much more when talking about emotional intelligence and living a good life
Although it is advised to avoid vulgar words, the truth is that these words are in existence for a reason, it may be to express a very discomforting situation, create a shock or to stress a point.
How do you tell your friends that a “sick-twisted-motherfucking-thwart fucked you over” without using vulgar words or at least a curse word and still appear hurt and angry?
Maybe I don’t know enough words in the dictionary, maybe most people don’t as well.
In case you were wondering who the three friends playing were, well they are the first person, the second person and the third person, surely you didn’t skip school. Well if you did I’m sorry you would have to go back to nursery school.
what was the point of this post again?
Okay, I remember; try and listen a little closer when people speak, some folks are bad at words, others have grown in environments that may not just be same as ours, but without understanding the emotions behind each word, we miss the point of the whole talk altogether
just to blow your mind: it is estimated that over 65% of all human communication is nonverbal but that people pick up and internalize only about 5 percent of this information.
more reason to pay closer attention to why and how people say and do things
To learn more about understanding people deeply I strongly recommend you check out Robert Greens book; The Laws of Human Nature
But you can check this post which is actually an extract from the book (SEE-THROUGH PEOPLES MASKS – the law of role-playing)