Are you dragged into a conversation?

A client of mine was really frustrated the other day. He was trying to leave work to spend time with his son, and he was – as he put it – “dragged” into a conversation he didn’t want to have with a coworker who asked him a question on the way out the door.

As we explored it, I kept asking, What do you mean “dragged”? Because you obviously weren’t physically literally dragged into a conversation.

What we uncovered is that he was using a kind of victim language. He’s talking about entering a conversation as if it’s by force.

People talk like this all the time – giving the subtle impression they don’t have a choice.

This idea that he’s being pulled from an outside force is an illusion. The simple fact is my client could have kept walking and just not answered the question.

It might have been a bit uncomfortable, but no police would have been called. He would not have breached his work contract. Basically, nothing bad would have happened.

It was the made-up rules he follows in his head that dragged him into that conversation. Nobody else did that to him. There was really nothing stopping him from breaking those rules, had he just known that he could.

I encourage you to break a rule today. Do something unusual that you only feel uncomfortable about because you believe it’s “rude” or “inappropriate” or “weird”.

Ignore a question you don’t want to answer. Ask for something you’d usually wait for someone else to offer. Drive a different way to work.

Be free.

One Response

  1. My favourite rule to break is the urge to rush. Slow down. Notice that you can do things slowly and calmly and nothing bad actually happens.

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