Posted in Good Advice, Our Blog

According to Martin Seligman, the father of positive psychology, how we communicate with people can create an enormous impact on our relationships especially when we use positive, active, constructive communication.

At work how do you respond to the question – “can you help me with this problem?”

There are four typical types of communication responses.


Active destructive (pointing out negative aspects of the situation): “it’s not really my job to help you and I am extremely busy at present”.


Passive destructive (ignoring the circumstances of the person completely): “I think I will meet John for lunch today”.


Passive constructive (supporting someone but in an understated way): “you still have plenty of time to figure it out for yourself”.


Active constructive (giving both authentic and enthusiastic support): “of course I can. When do you have to have the answer? Can we meet today to go through the issues?”


Communicating actively and constructively creates reciprocal interactions as we all want to be acknowledged and have our voices heard.

Imagine how a workplace would be if everyone made a conscious decision to offer just active constructive responses. Be positive.

Words have the power to destroy or heal. When words are both true and kind they can change our world” – Gautama Buddha


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