3 Dealing with the fluff stuff Getting more direct in your language and achieving clarity

Remember how cool it was, as a kid, to get your hands on some bubble wrap? Popping those little pockets of air was great fun, wasn't it? Sometimes you'd pop all the bubbles in the first five minutes, but other times you'd make the fun last for ages. Once the bubbles were all popped, however, you were just left with plastic — damaged plastic that no longer served any purpose.

Sometimes we wonder if our society is still just as fascinated with bubble wrap, even though we've moved on from our childhood fascinations. We love to wrap things up in a protective covering rather than deal with the bumps and bruises that give our lives character. We avoid the trials and tribulations — the same things we pay good money to see in movies on the big screen.

Conflict and disagreement are unavoidable and they should often be celebrated rather than condemned. History shows some of the greatest inventions, civil movements and advances in humanity have occurred as a direct result of two or more people butting heads.

Despite this, we love to wrap reality in cotton wool. We do it through our actions, our behaviours and, mostly, through our words. Interestingly, it is our complex language that provides far too many options for fluff. The very nature of the English language can lend itself to misunderstanding ...

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