From the title already, this post is about a simple idea. It’s a fundamental idea for communication, but also for anything and everything you do in life. Always. Yes, that hard and brutal. And now I will tell you why.
It’s important that we keep in mind at all times that there are humans on either side because a fundamental part of the human experience is to be human alongside other humans. Now, let’s understand that to communicate is to interact, and let’s uderstand that there’s a human on our side, and one on the other side, and let’s understand above everything else that these are two fundational pillars, and that forgetting about them is a critical mistake, although, tragically, it happens more often than it should.
Now, I’m not saying I discovered the laws of gravity, or telling you how I came up with the wheel… this is a basic matter, which constitutes a fundamental law of communication, one that many times gets buried under layer upon layer of theoretical concepts and definitions such as sender and receiver, agent, code, signifier and signified, production and reception instances, and et cetera for all.
Let it be perfectly clear: on the other side, there’s a human. In spite of us being in the very middle of the so called digital era, and that there’s more and more technology between one another, and that it’s ever more frequent that we communicate with a machine rather than with a person, always, in every circumstance in which communication takes place, there’s a human at the end of that chain. No matter how long, mediated, or technological the chain gets, the process starts with a human, and ends with another human sitting at the opposite end of the planet, or maybe two blocks away. And we can be sure of all this for the simple reason that we begin the whole thing by knowing that, on this side, there’s you.
Just like you on your side, on the other side there’s a human, one that listens and sees and processes the information that reaches him or her, one that evaluates what is told and shown to him or her, but who then makes decisions internally, in dialogue with him or herself. There are humans on either side, and on either side we’re humans taking input and debating it with ourselves to reach a determination. If at some point you forget who’s on the other side, you’re at risk of treating that someone as a number, of treating that someone as a resource, treating that someone as an object, of treating that someone wrong.
There are humans on both sides, each one with their particularities, their quirks, their strengths and weaknesses. No two people are exactly alike, and the same goes for situations. Also, there isn’t a recipe to communicate well, but there is a golden rule to communicate better: remember that, on the other side, there’s also a human. Just like you.
If all this helped you in any way, or if it brought up questions or comments, whether you agree or not, email me at email@example.com, and we’ll talk it over, human to human.