Three Communication Lessons Taught by Robin Williams

Robin WilliamsTake the highroad.

No one is immune to life’s chaos. You might think that winning Oscars and Emmys and being famous creates a bubble of immunity to pain. False. But, how is this relevant to your life? You are probably saying, “Well, I’m NOT famous.”  Maybe not, but you ARE a leader in your work. Or you may interact with those that you perceive as perfect power players. Here’s the lesson – we don’t know what emotional baggage is going on with others. Take the highroad when communicating to anyone. No matter the veneer, we don’t know what is really going on with the other. Maybe they don’t know either.

Be transparent – with some strategy.

I tell my clients to project the perception that they want others to see. Perception is reality and all that. I will stick to this premise. BUT, I also suggest to clients going through challenges to find a few honest friends or mentors or colleagues or a therapist to talk the truth. Yes, be transparent. Share your real self. But pick the time, the place, and the people you can trust.

Laugh.

Life is crazy. Find the humor. Robin Williams was a comic genius. I’m not suggesting we become comedians, but let’s learn from Robin’s legacy of providing laughter to us. During stressful times, can you find something to laugh about? Two years ago at 3 a.m. my husband and I sat in bed crying about the chemo treatments I was about to embark on due to a breast cancer diagnosis. (I’m fine now!) Overwhelmed and in shock I suddenly began to chuckle. Jim asked, “What are you laughing about?” I replied, “I thought I might sleep with someone who’s bald, I just never thought it would be me.”

May Robin Williams be a blessed memory.

Your Speak For Yourself® challenge: Take the high road. Be transparent with some strategy. Laugh.

Karen Cortell Reisman, M.S., author of 3 books and President of Speak For Yourself®, works with organizations on how to communicate to make more money. It’s all in how you speak for yourself. Read more at www.SpeakForYourself.com/blog/