The Keys to Communicating Heart to Heart

By Dr. Ron Jenson

Hi guys. Ron today from beautiful Rome, Italy. It’s late spring. It’s a gorgeous day. My wife and another couple are touring around Italy over the next few weeks.

And last night we serendipitously stepped out and went to a scaled-down performance of an opera called The Barber of Seville that was held in a beautiful Cathedral not far from where I am right now. What grabbed my attention about this is it was all in Italian and I didn’t understand a word of what was said. Neither did my wife. But the cast communicated. They communicated heart to heart, soul to soul to us. Just a handful of exquisite singers and about six musicians in the orchestra played in this beautiful venue. I didn’t know the language but yet we had communication take place. I wanted to use this as an example of helping you understand the concept of communications.

The Greek fathers taught that when we communicate there are three core elements of good communication. Logos. Logos is logic. Ethos means credibility. And Pathos—that is our passion or our energy, our commitment. That’s what was true of those people who sang last night and those who played. They exhibited all three of those elements and that’s why they communicated.

First was Logos. It’s communicating the content. They communicated a beautiful operatic content (written by Rossini a long time ago) and communicated it in a different language that we didn’t understand. But though we didn’t understand the words we understood the power behind it because it was a very rich, full, alive piece of music. That’s the Logos. I want you to remember that when it comes to communication only seven percent of our communication is the words. The rest are non-verbals, context, or relationship. All those types of things. So the musicians had Logos. Number one, great content. They were singing a great opera.

Number two, they had Ethos. Ethos is credibility. They were credible because they were excellent; they had a commitment to excellence and they had competence. So even though there were only six in the orchestra, they were robust and beautiful. Even though there was only a handful of people in the singing cast, they were all pros.You could tell it and they communicated with incredible credibility. They were dependable, reliable. So that helped them communicate.

And then thirdly they had Pathos. They had passion, they had commitment. There were less than 100 people in this beautiful and intimate venue, and yet the musicians communicated with passion like there were thousands, like they were in the biggest opera house in the land, because they were professionals and they had commitment.

Whenever you’re communicating remember Logos, Ethos, and Pathos. I want you to think of Logos, your content, the words you’re saying. Are they meaningful? Are they true? Are they honest? Are they strong? I want you to think of secondly your Ethos. Are you credible? Do you walk the talk? Do you live out the word you talk about? And then thirdly I want you to think about your Pathos. Are you passionate about what you say? Do you believe in it? Do you buy into it wholeheartedly?

If you can do those three things the way these people did as they communicated heart to heart to us without any understanding of their language, you can communicate effectively and you can see much greater results and success personally and professionally. So put those to work — Logos, Ethos, Pathos — and watch what happens.

Ron signing off from beautiful Rome, Italy.