“I” Language Series: Responsibility and Building Relationships

by Jo-Ann Downey on October 31, 2012

in Relationship Communication Skills

Post image for “I” Language Series: Responsibility and Building Relationships

How do you feel when someone says something like “you drive too fast”, “everyone drives too fast”, or “you are always so sensitive”?  Do you feel a sense of separation from that person? Would you like an effective way to respond?

Responsibility

Do you believe that you are powerless in your life or do you believe you are responsible for creating/ co-creating your life?  The powerless approach involves victim energy, not taking responsibility for yourself, and negative energy – not pathways to success.  Owning and being responsible for your thoughts, feelings, and actions (or non-actions, which are also actions) is empowering.

“In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.”  Eleanor Roosevelt

“I” Language

“I” language is a great way to take personal responsibility, authentically express yourself, and build better personal and professional relationships.  “I” language is ownership language and can make you think twice.  Sort of like when you sign a legal contract, you stop and think twice. Your word is your contract and your world.

An example of “I” language is “I appreciate you driving us to the movies and I feel a knot in my stomach due to the speed we are going”.   “I” language allows you to express yourself in a way that is honest and clear, minimizes hurting others, can help you achieve your goals, and can keep lines of communication open.

“If you wish to know the mind of a man, listen to his words.”  Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

“Words are also actions, and actions are a kind of words.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

“You/They” Language versus “I” Language Examples

Examples of  “You/They” language: “you talk too much” or “people/they talk too much”.  “You/They” language, especially when emotions are present, is often confrontational and delivered in a way that presents something as fact when it is an opinion.  To me, “You/They” language often has separation energy which does not build relationships.

Examples of “I” language:  “I notice that I feel distant from you when I can’t verbally share how I feel”, or “I feel hampered in situations when people talk so much that I can’t share my thoughts”. Be careful with using words like always and never because they lock you into a position (that you then have a tendency to want to defend) and can give the appearance of conceit.

If someone uses “You/They” language, choose to respond with “I” language!

Setting intentions and checking in with yourself in terms of where you are coming from, especially in emotional situations, are very important skills.  You may want to read “I Hear You is the New I Love You”, “5 Tips on How to Listen Effectively”, “Forgiveness Series:  Observing Where You Are Coming From”, and “Intentions Series:  How to Create Powerful Intentions”.

Very Smart Girls use “I” language.

I’m interested in your thoughts- comments welcome. The name you type in the comment section (for example, Jo-Ann, Jo-Ann Downey or Jo-Ann from Boston) will appear on the site. Your email address will NOT appear. If you provide a website URL (for example, your business or your blog URL), it will be linked to your name so others can learn more about you.

photo credit: chrisinplymouth

{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

Legacy food storage company is the appropriate firm to contact for help with food storage services. Their program for storing food involves planning and does cost some extra money. Most of the products intended for longer term use are prepared in particul June 20, 2016 at 4:30 am

Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The text in your content seem to be running off the screen in Ie.
I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue or something to
do with web browser compatibility but I thought I’d post
to let you know. The design and style look great though!
Hope you get the issue resolved soon. Cheers

Reply

Hello Future Customer From New York or Anywhere eles looking for a web design company in the United States. Our web design firm can get you to the top of Google Yahoo & Bing for a Cheap Rate Compared to our compastion. We Should. Have page 1 rankings June 20, 2016 at 3:29 am

Yes! Finally something about New York Web Design.

Reply

concursos abertos June 14, 2016 at 5:56 am

Very good info. Lucky me I found your blog by chance (stumbleupon).
I’ve saved it for later!

Reply

watch series online June 12, 2016 at 4:15 am

Very good website you have here but I was wanting to know if you knew of
any message boards that cover the same topics discussed in this article?
I’d really like to be a part of online community
where I can get responses from other knowledgeable individuals that share the
same interest. If you have any recommendations,
please let me know. Thanks a lot!

Reply

Jo-Ann Downey June 13, 2016 at 2:23 pm

Thank you for your positive feedback. I appreciate it very much. Unfortunately, I do not have a referral for you, however, if you find a great site please let me know! Jo-Ann

Reply

Seattle Web Design June 11, 2016 at 2:33 am

Hi colleagues, its impressive post concerning teachingand entirely explained, keep it up all the time.

Reply

Jo-Ann Downey June 13, 2016 at 2:23 pm

Thank you! Jo-Ann

Reply

Opel Usados para venda. June 9, 2016 at 12:13 am

It’s perfect time to make some plans for the future and it is
time to be happy. I’ve read this post and if I could I desire to suggest you few
interesting things or advice. Perhaps you can write next articles referring to this article.
I wish to read more things about it!

Reply

Jo-Ann Downey June 13, 2016 at 2:26 pm

Thank you for your input and I will take it into careful consideration! I just moved and have been very busy 😉 Jo-Ann

Reply

​Nice côte d'azur June 8, 2016 at 4:08 am

hey there and thank you for your info – I’ve certainly picked up something new from
right here. I did however expertise some technical points using
this website, as I experienced to reload the web site lots of times previous to I
could get it to load properly. I had been wondering if your web hosting is OK?
Not that I’m complaining, but sluggish loading instances times will sometimes affect your placement
in google and could damage your quality score if advertising and
marketing with Adwords. Anyway I’m adding this RSS to my e-mail and can look out for a
lot more of your respective exciting content.

Ensure that you update this again very soon.

Reply

Jo-Ann Downey June 13, 2016 at 2:27 pm

Thank you! Jo-Ann

Reply

donate A car June 8, 2016 at 2:57 am

As the admin of this site is working, no question very shortly it will be famous, due to its
feature contents.

Reply

comment gagner de l argent sur internet June 8, 2016 at 2:48 am

Nice post. I used to be checking constantly this weblog and I am inspired!
Extremely helpful info particularly the final phase :
) I maintain such information a lot. I used to be looking for this certain info for a very lengthy time.
Thanks and good luck.

Reply

Jo-Ann Downey June 13, 2016 at 2:28 pm

Thank you! Jo-Ann

Reply

collapsible backdrops June 7, 2016 at 3:50 am

This is my first time visit at here and i am truly happy to read
all at alone place.

Reply

collapsible backdrops June 7, 2016 at 3:42 am

Appreciating the commitment you put into your site and detailed information you
present. It’s nice to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the same unwanted rehashed material.
Great read! I’ve bookmarked your site and I’m including your RSS
feeds to my Google account.

Reply

Bet at the best sportsbook online and mobile sportsbook with a free $50 sports bet upon signup with BetDNA the ultimate sportsbook online for US and European customers. Bet at this new online sportsbook and mobile sportsbook with a $50 free sports plus an May 27, 2016 at 5:15 pm

Ahaa, its good dialogue concerning this paragraph at this place at this web site, I have read all
that, so now me also commenting at this place.

Reply

Bridging loan May 23, 2016 at 1:49 pm

Great post. I was checking constantly this blog and I’m impressed!
Extremely useful information specially the last part :) I care for such info a lot.
I was seeking this certain information for a long time.
Thank you and good luck.

Reply

Alphonse October 17, 2015 at 3:28 pm

great site I’m a big games bettor from Singapore

Reply

the power of responsibility song October 13, 2015 at 9:48 am

By increasing and creating your understanding in these regions you will have built huge advance in creating a further
and exceptionally self-empowering comprehension of your
LIMITLESS potential, which will start added doors allowing and strengthening you to begin using the actions
necessary to start adjusting the unfavorable benefits that you will be currently encountering IN VIRTUALLY
ANY location of your lifetime. Every one of them was designed with responsibility.

Reply

Jo-Ann Downey October 13, 2015 at 10:18 am

Beautiful input- thank you!!!! Jo-Ann

Reply

Leave a Comment

{ 3 trackbacks }

Previous post:

Next post: