What can a simple “Ouch” accomplish?

Have you ever been in a situation where someone’s behavior or words are incredibly hurtful and insensitive?

Several years ago I was on a not-for-profit work team.  We were all volunteers.  There was one woman who was so incredibly rude to the one man on this team.  Funny thing was, he did most of the work and was so humble.  So many times I’d crinch when she’d criticize him openly in the group in ways I didn’t feel warranted.  I’d Spiral to refocus and acknowledge him.  Though, after a while I wanted to just call her out on her rudeness.

Then, she sent a scathing email to the whole team directing criticism at him again.  One of the tools in Spiral Impact is to ‘Acknowledge.’ In the Black Belt Edition of Spiral Impact I go over this on pages 46-48.  One acknowlege suggestion is “Ouch.” It’s a powerful little word and it works.

I replied to her email, just to her, and said only, “Ouch.”  She immediately responded to me and said, “Thank you, you made me re-read what I said.  It was hurtful.”  She sent an apology to the whole group.  I never heard her criticize him again.

This Spiral Question was inspired by a question in the Jump Start your Power Video Series.

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