Inner state matters

When you’re communicating with another live being, your inner state matters more than your outward actions. You can be completely still, yet communicate something deep and important. If you have children, you know this especially well.

Your inner state is transferred through thousands of little signals, many more than our conscious mind is able to process. Mirror neurons also help others pick up your inner state from across the room.

From Chin-Ning Chu in Thick Face, Black Heart (excellent book):

Two people can read the same book on lion-taming. They can enter the lion’s cage dressed identically. They can use identical gestures and words to command the lion. But the results will not be the same. One of them will get the lion to jump through the hoop, and the other will end up as a gruesome mess on the floor of the lion’s cage. […] there is an inward state that must be achieved in order for words and actions to be effective.

This is a problem with a lot of the advice out there. If it were that easy, everyone would be doing it and having success with it. But there’s an inner state that’s required that no-one seems to be talking about.

That inner state is about congruence between who you are at your core, who you think you are, and what you project outwards. It’s about your beliefs, your fears, your subconscious programming.

You project all of these things in your voice when you’re on the phone. When we meet you in person. Even when you communicate in writing, your words, grammar, and punctuation will tell on you.

It is my belief that inner state is way more important than outward actions. Of course the actions matter. But if you get the inner state right, the actions almost take care of themselves.


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