Mojo or Meta Messages?

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The brain’s wellbeing, and your mojo, (or serotonin) stands on the opposite side of meta-messages. Words we communicate to mask meaning can sink us like a punt on a tsunami.  Sincere, kind and truthful words on the other hand, can propel us to the peaks.

Meta-messages say what isn’t meant and mean what isn’t said.

Have you noticed  how meta-messages leave victims racing for escape hatches? We begin to question flaws between words when what we hear is not what the speaker means. How does it happen?

The use of meta messages indicates a lack of interpersonal  intelligence. We tend to use meta-messages instead of honest communications, and then wonder why others tend to bolt. Luckily, it doesn’t have to be that way.

Meta-messages can also come from undeveloped interpersonal or linguistic intelligences, and sadly they torpedo the very people we hope to win over as friends. These moody masks also kill brainpower for future exchanges whenever meta-messages …

  • In sales, dive-bomb consumers at a business like a vulture swoops down for its kill. In response,  folks flee. Brain shut down with cortisol that comes through insincere statements such as, How are you? when you really mean, “How’s your bank account?”

  • In conflict, state meta-messages such as – All’s OK –  when it’s not, and you’re really holding a grudge about unspoken problems. Amygdalas flare, like lightning strikes iron rods, through meta-messages insincerity of words.

  • In learning, we pretend we understand long before we do, and we watch those we lead default back to ruts because we failed to speak sincerely, and so others could not apply new facts accurately.

  • In communication, we claim no feelings hurt, when emotions were literally crushed, and that meta-message sends convoluted meanings that leaves whole circles with mental regrets.

What do people really mean anyway, when they use camouflages such as –

1. I don’t mean to be critical but …
2. That’s OK …
3. Catch me next time…
4. It doesn’t really matter, but …
5. It’s only because I care that I tell you this …
6. Guess I’ll have to do it by myself from now on …
7. No hurt feelings… but …
8. I don’t really mind at all …
9. Sorry …
10. I don’t mean to be negative, but …

If meta-messages are simple covers with convoluted meanings,  they rarely hide how we really feel. Nor does it take Dr. Phil to  pick up on the fact that what we say in pretense may not be what we mean.

Check out the vernacular for common meta-messages below to see if you detect similar hidden meanings from your communication.

1. We say – I don’t mean to be critical but we mean – this stuff stinks!
2. That’s Ok – which means – cause you’re too dumb to get it right anyway!
3. Catch me next time – is really meant to add –  if you can run faster than me from this thing!
4. It doesn’t really matter – means –cause you’ll never get it right anyway!
5. It’s only because I care that I tell you this – translates into – because if I didn’t say that first you’d likely pop me one when you hear what I have to tell you!
6. Guess I’ll have to do it by myself from now on – is really saying – cause none of you jerks will help!
7. No hurt feelings – is simply the disguise for – cause you’re too crude to waste feelings on anyway!
8. I don’t really mind – translates into – cause if I let myself mind I’d sue you for your last breath!
9. Sorry – says in reality –   you’re cramping my style and that’s a major problem, so don’t expect more cause I’m apologizing ahead.
10. How do you like my work – more truthfully begs –  Say it’s great. Say it rocks. Say it’s brilliant, OK?

Meta-messages torpedo trust and pretense prevents open communications in many toxic settings.  We say what others want to hear to avoid speaking what’s really on our mind? Serotonin lies opposite meta-messages in tone that communicates sincerity can build goodwill even among people who disagree. Do you observe more goodwill tone or more meta-messages in your words?

Related tool: Choose brain based communication and side-step meta-messages in these learner ready materials:

Good tone is the brain’s path past  meta-messages.

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