The other day Katie Couric taught us all a lesson in having seemingly impossible conversations. She taught us that not everything has to be a confrontation; that not everything has to be escalated higher and higher with each back and forth. And she taught us that everyone needs to take a breath and remember that there is a human being, a person with feelings, on the other side of our communications.
As outlined in the article on Inc.com, ( https://www.inc.com/amp/200182.html ),
in response to a light hearted photo of Katie and her daughter, someone felt it would be appropriate to attack Katie for her lack of commentary on the recent events having to do with Matt Lauer. (I’m assuming I don’t need to go into detail here and that you haven’t been living under a rock.)
The commenter didn’t simply ask “Hey Katie, anything to say about Matt Lauer?” The commenter didn’t say “Hey Katie, kinda disappointed we haven’t heard anything from you about Matt.”
The commenter instead posted several intense #’s and finished with a nice round of at least five exclamation points.
How many people would have responded in kind? With a counter attack of equal, if not increasingly viscous retort?
Keep in mind, this was not a statement about Matt’s behavior and it was not directed at Matt. It was a harsh message to a person who in no way has been identified as being aware of Matt’s behavior or involved in it. Yell away at him.
You could just tell, even in the few words that were posted, that Katie’s intent with her message was sincere and authentic. That quickly, she reminded the commenter that she too was hurt, she acknowledged the obvious seriousness of Matt’s behavior and even though she really didn’t have to, she acknowledged the commenter directly in a way that let the commenter know they had been heard.
This is all probably a little harder to do in the middle of a conversation then when you have a minute to think out your response on social media. But what a great skill to try to develop!