It is harder to receive bad news after you have heard good expectations than it is to learn bad news after bad or right from the start.

> If you think the metrics are trending positively, it is more difficult to deal with when they turn sour.

> If you won the lawsuit, it is harder to lose on appeal than if you had lost in the first round.

> If you have positive lab results and the disease seems to be under control, it makes it more challenging when it relapses.

> If you hear that someone is in an accident, but is “ok”, it is harder to grasp when it turns out not to be so.

I believe we naturally set our expectations on one outcome and anchor our emotions to that. When the tides shift and the news is a reverse of our initial projections, it requires some mental gymnastics to handle the ups and downs of the communication.

Be cautious about setting a positive tone prematurely. Temper your news and outlook with a dose of reality and anticipate the potential outcomes. Save the victory dance for what is truly the last lap.

How does this dot connect with you? Leave a comment and share your observations with others.



About the Author leadership dots by dr. beth triplett

Dr. beth triplett is the owner of leadership dots, offering coaching, training and consulting for new supervisors. She also shares daily lessons on her leadershipdots blog. Her work is based on the leadership dots philosophy that change happens through the intentional connecting of small steps in the short term to the big picture in the long term.

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