Words are amazing things. They can destroy a nation or rebuild the world. The can be beautiful poetry. They can be dangerous weaponry.
It would be best if in our word usage we keep in mind the power we hold.
“Welcome to Sweet Frog, can I help you?” On a scale of 1-10 how likely would you be to actually tell the girl behind the counter how she could help you in ways other than “Can I have a taster cup?” I’m guessing about a 0 but hey maybe that’s just me. If you think you’d totally tell her all your life problems and how she could help I have two things to say to you.
1. You don’t seem to have many life problems.
2. Get off my blog, hater.
Now that that’s all taken care of, I wanted to talk a bit about how to effectively communicate when you do care and you do want to help. You have a few options.
1. The good old question for when you really have no idea what you can do but you truly want to help. “How can I help?”. Very specific. Not “Can I help?”. Not “How can I help you?”. But “How can I help?”. “Can I help?” sounds far more like an empty gesture or sense of obligation, and no one wants a pity friend. “How can I help you?” makes one think back some sort of business setting with a built-in response of “I’m good, thanks!”.
2. The NIKE method. “Just do it.”. This is by far the most effective, most direct method. “I’m coming over today at 3 to do your dishes and laundry. Will you be home?”
3. The list of choices/coupon book. “Happy Thursday! You can choose five of the following services free at the time of your choice. No expiration date. 1. Laundry 2. Trash 3. Coffee (never underestimate the power of a pot of coffee) 4. Dishes 5. Mop 6. Vacuum 7. Sweep
Do you have any ideas for how to lend a hand? Sound off in the comments!