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The Next Four Elements of the Miick Safe Space® System for Conscious Communication™

Posted by Rudy Miick on Jun 28, 2017 1:02:31 PM

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As we mentioned in the previous post, Conscious Communication™ doesn't happen in a vacuum. We detailed the first four elements of Safe Space®, and now it's time to look at the next four.

To recap, there are eight elements of the Miick Safe Space® System, and each one stands alone. At the same time, each one integrates with the others to make a potent guide for effective dialogue, feedback, coaching, and conflict resolution.

Let's take a detailed look at the next four elements of the Miick Safe Space® System for Conscious Communication™:

5) 7-45-48

These three numbers come from one of two global studies that were very close in outcomes. The data is: In the translation of what we say and do, the people with whom we interact make meaning or translate meaning in the following ways:

• 7% from words spoken

• 45% from body language (there are at least 3000 facial expressions that mean exactly the same thing globally)

• 48% from tone of voice (what’s sincere verses sarcastic, honest or not, a sideways jab? Where is the voice “placed” in tone to make these valuations on meaning?)

This means that body language and tone make up 93% of the translation:

• If I want to ensure my effectiveness in communication, I had better work to have my tone of voice and body language actually match my words. (This alignment of 7 – 45 – 48 supports effective intention – impact)

• There is a paradox: My word choice is very important, not less important. And words mean less than body language and tone when the body language and tone don’t match the words I use.


• Pay attention to sarcasm… it’s funny until its not… it’s clear but not.

• Be kind and courageous enough to actually speak the truth, instead of “hiding behind” sarcasm.

• Watch out for pronouns: he, she, it, they, that.


6) Moose in the Room

To name a “moose” is a courageous act.

Most of us know the phrase, there’s an “elephant in the room,” or "wow, that’s an 800-pound gorilla.” Notice the impact in a meeting or training when it seems that “everyone” is holding back some dialogue about an issue that needs to be addressed, yet “no one” is willing to name it.

Often times, one person has the courage to name the issue and then gets in trouble. An alternative, our alternative choice, is to immediately name the moose in the room, the unspoken issue. Our expectation is that we lead meetings with naming any moose that causes drama or gets in the way of our individual or collective success.

Naming “the moose” is far more than simply having an “open door” policy. Being celebrated for naming a moose, that we expect the moose to be named in support of our collective success, is a powerful and potent action. Fear of speaking the unspoken slows us down and impedes our success through the use of Purpose and Values. The most potent way to mature your company or family system is to name “the moose”.

Moose start out small and grow exponentially the longer they remain un-named. Naming any moose allows each of us to laugh at the humanness of making meaning, making up stories instead of checking our story. Moose can easily show up on a daily basis. Name it, shoo the moose away, and stay present!

You know there’s a moose, when the real meeting happens after the meeting; or when someone says, “Oh, don’t talk about that…”; or “Yes, but… “


Name the moose.

“I wonder if this is a moose?” or "I have what feels like a moose.”

Start a meeting with a check-in with each person naming a moose. If more than two people have the same moose, we’d better deal with it.

When a moose is named, its power and size is diminished; use purpose, values and Conscious Communication tools to discuss any moose, any time.


7) Confidentiality

Confidentiality is a potent part of Conscious Communication. Honoring confidentiality builds TRUST exponentially. Confidentiality simply means: That what’s said in the room stays in the room.


Share the energy and learning from a meeting; share excitement or challenge.

In training, in meetings, in one-on-one conversations, we do not share the name of individuals named as examples. We share that people did or do profound work, or challenging work within themselves taking the risk to use conscious communication, or to name their truth, then dishonoring confidentiality. We do not share what they shared in confidentiality.


“As a group we used our Purpose and Values to discuss budgets and decisions that have impacted our team and our members. We had a really honest conversation and used Safe Space to build our power as a team… the experience was great!”


“Michelle went on about frustrated parents impacted by our budget cuts with the child care.”


8) Make “I” Statements

There are two parts to making "I" statements: “Singular I” and the “Collective I.”

Part 1 “Singular I”:

I speak for myself, based on data, my truth or experience, sharing my intention, sharing my inside out, naming the unspoken or my truth.


“I have a real concern about how we’re making budget cutting decisions.”


“Everyone’s really upset with the budget cuts.”

Part 1 continued, I own my attitude and actions:


I am conscious of not making I/you statements.


“I am so hurt by what you’ve said to me.” “You make me so angry.” “I feel like you’re really being a jerk.”


“I can feel myself hurt from our discussion.” “I can feel anger building up inside me from what I’ve heard.” “I realize that when we talk I end up feeling really judgmental.

Part 2: “Collective I” Statements

Making ""I statements at the group level is more challenging. I need to pay attention to my intention! Do I INTEND to be part of the group? Is my intention to be “outside the group”? Is my goal to build the energy of the group? I need to pay attention: to be conscious of my choice in language!

Most important with collective "I" statements is to not worry too much about getting “it right.” Practice is what will move the skills each of us has in making effective collective "I" statements.

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Making “Collective I” Statements

From the model above, at the group level: What follows are examples of making "I" statements at various levels of system within a group.

At the personal level:

“I do my best to make I statements whenever I speak” “I consciously do my best to make I statements when ever I speak.” “I own my decisions and my actions.”

At the collective level, or the group level, that is, when I am part of the group:

“Its my wish that each of us makes I statements whenever any one of us (or each of us) speaks.” “Each of us makes I statements when ever any one of us speaks.” “Each of us needs to own our actions.”

At the group level, as a group action:

“I’d like each of us to do our best consciously, to make “I statements.” “We all need to consciously use I statements” “At work, we each own our actions.”

As leader outside the group:

“I need you all to make I statements.” “I need each of you to make I statements” “I need you to own your actions.” “I invite you to own your actions.”

As the leader “inside the group:

“Each of us needs to make I statements” “I need each of us to make I statements.”

Two pointers to pay attention to in our discussions, coaching, and feedback:

1. Watch out for “But”

The word “but” tends to negate all that’s said before it.

“You’re doing a good job but, ______.”

Instead try: At the same time; or As an alternative.

For example, “But” can easily negate anything and all that’s been said previously. “But” tends to stop “energy.” Instead practice using phrases like "at the same time" or "as an alternative."

With but: “You’re a good person but you are not doing your five-step greetings.”

Lose the but: “You’re a good person, and I know you can do more with your five-step greetings.” “You’re a good person, and to take your positive impact further, I know you can do more with your five-step greeting.”

2. And… Watch out for “Why”

The word “Why” can tend to make one shut down (a little or a lot). Two examples of “why”:

Why did you do that? Why are you doing that?

Some alternative possibilities are:

I’m interested in your choice _______. What’s motivating you to ______.

How could you do that differently? What could you do instead?

Safe Space® for Conscious Communication™ can make our relationships more successful both in business and in life. Schedule 30 minutes with Miick to get the basics on how these elements work in real life applications.


30 Minutes with Miick

Topics: Conscious Communication, Training, Safe Space, Coaching, Conflict Resolution, Purpose & Values