The Conversation Doctor
I would like to dedicate my final blog of 2018 to a most extraordinary woman and mentor, Judith E Glaser. Judith not only left her mark on so many when she passed in November this year after a brave and lengthy struggle with cancer, but empowered a whole tribe of coaches to continue spreading her immensely powerful Conversational Intelligence® work and ensuring her legacy lives on.
Conversations can help keep us and our organisations healthy
In the same way that cells are able to communicate the needs of our bodies to keep us healthy, healthy conversations are important to create healthy teams, organisations and family units.
When our cells are healthy and communicate effectively we have strong immune systems, are able to be resilient and fight off impending diseases. When they are unhealthy we tend to see signs of disease.
This is clearly reflected in teams or family units where conversations are healthy and the different ‘cells’ are in synch or in flow with each other. This enables a greater level of trust and people’s hearts and heads are much more open to working effectively together. The opposite is true when communication is ineffective.
Are our conversations able to influence our immune systems?
We now have a much greater understanding of the complexity of our ‘brain’ and how we in fact have connected neurological systems in our heads, hearts and guts. The science in fact is changing incredibly rapidly, with the latest discoveries around our fascia (connective tissue that surrounds every muscle and every organ) having more nerves than any other organ system and being able to tell us a huge amount about our internal state.
We know we are able to influence another person’s neurochemistry–either increasing the level of oxytocin when we show appreciation or the level of cortisol when we judge–by the words we use. This affects our ability to connect, work effectively with them and adapt to the demands of our fast changing world.
Judith had no doubt that the healthy conversations within our coaching cohort played a big part in enabling her immune system to fight for as long and as hard as it did, and she often shared how her doctors were super excited by her decreasing cancer markers along the way.
Synchronising occurs when people are connected to each other and to a higher purpose
When two people connect by really being curious as to what each other needs, by increasing eye contact and giving voice to the other’s concerns, their state of mind, heart and emotions become aligned and in synch with each other. They are said to be in coherence. Physiologically, their immune, hormonal and nervous systems function in a state of energetic co-ordination.
“When we operate in synch with others we build trust, our heart and pre frontal cortex open up and connect and we have access to increased wisdom, insight, empathy, compassion and foresight. “ Judith E Glaser
Our real challenge is to synchronise when we are under pressure, whether it be at work or on the home front.
Perhaps as you head into the festive season, where there are many opportunities for caring and connection as well as potential opportunities for raised cortisol levels, you might reflect on the types of conversations you can create to enable greater connection and increased wellbeing?
I would like to thank you for your support over the year and wish you all a safe and healthy holiday period and a year ahead that brings much synchronising, coherence and wonderful connections.