So what does this have to do with Communication? A lot actually.
We’ve all been in the room when someone loses their cool. It can be intimidating to see a colleague play the part of the Tabby of Terror. And let’s face it, when we ourselves are under pressure, when the negotiation needs to go our way, or when we feel like we’re being undercut by a boss or colleague, most of us have puffed up our fur in subtle and not so subtle ways in order to look more impressive than we feel.
But we can learn from the Wimbledon Wonder here: Don’t just do something, sit there. We all have the potential to go flying when we’re batted at. But we can also choose not to react to that challenging colleague, boss or client. Instead we can take a pause, take a breath and simply listen to our opponent. Pausing, breathing and listening allow us to see the situation for what it really is: there’s a kitten in the room trying desperately to look like a lion.