225: Life is a series of interactions, for better or worse.

I’ve come to see life as a series of interactions. Depending on the quality of our interactions, the quality of our life will be determined. Every day we share our heart, mind and will with one another by the way we communicate. Basically, the heart is our emotions, mind our rational thoughts, and will our desire.

The older I get, the more I am aware of the emotion, mind, and will others are communicating. (I am also more aware of the emotion, mind, and will I say to myself, but that’s another post!)

I’ve realize how important it is to discern whether an individual is interacting to construct, or destruct, the relationship or circumstances. Is the overall message to improve, or make matters worse? Depending on the answer, I must choose whether to engage or not engage in the interaction. I must discern whether my words will be heard, or if the interaction is about only hearing what the other person thinks. And, if it is a 1-way communication, I must decide whether the heart, mind, and will of the person are constructive, or destructive for the relationship or situation.

How we interact with one another matters. How we interact with the youth in our life really matters. Every day we are influencing their heart, mind, and will in that moment and possibly future moments.

Have you thought about the way you interact with a younger person? How would it be if we all started to speak in ways that benefit a younger person’s heart, mind, and will? How would it be if you started today paying closer attention to your own heart, mind, and will? Constructive, or destructive? Improving, or making matters worse?

Give time each day to evaluate your feelings, thinking, and desires as overall positive or negative. If negative, be more sensitive about how you are projecting your words and actions toward others. Can you find healthy ways to shift your focus to be more positive? Consider how your words and actions are being influenced by your current feelings, thinking, and wanting in this moment.

When you are communicating with a younger person, recognize that your heart, mind, and will are more than likely different than theirs. Diligently seek ways to communicate to ensure their heart, mind, and will are being heard.  Do not just speak what you think. Periodically pause and ask yourself questions such as “How is this younger person feeling in this moment?”; “What is he or she thinking in this situation?”.

The words and actions you choose today will influence the younger person’s heart, mind, and will in the moment and possibly in the future.

The better you understand your own heart, mind, and will, the better you are able to support and develop someone else’s.

In every interaction, the words and actions chosen reflect the current heart, mind, and will of all those involved. #TELLforGood


About the author of this post:  Denise Forrest, Ph.D.

Denise is a mother of three grown children and has been a teacher to thousands of students.  She is the creator of the TELL message and Founder of TELL Our Children, Inc. Denise also serves K-12 schools as a consultant focusing on mathematics education and instructional decisions for student learning (TELL for student learning). You can contact her by emailing denise@tellourchildren.org.

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