Touchstones: A Pathway to Authentic Communication Part One of Six

We are delighted to announce that the Mediators Without Borders communication text, Touchstones: A Pathway to Authentic Communication, is going to press in April. In this six part series of blogs, we will present excerpts from the book authored by Shauna Ries and Susan Harter in collaboration with Genna Murphy. In this excerpt, the authors explain the importance of communicating from a stance of authenticity.

 We present the Touchstone Skills in the context of a pathway to authentic communication because it is this type of orientation that most often leads us to deep and loving relationships that have the potential to change the world one relationship at a time. These deep connections with another are what Martin Buber (1970) refers to as I and Thou relationships, those that are real, authentic, or genuine. Authentic communication becomes a vehicle to establish these rare connections and, at the same time, it makes our less intimate relationships richer. Throughout this book, we will offer suggestions and strategies in your quest for deeper relationships by presenting self-assessment surveys that will help you gauge where you are in terms of authenticity, transparency and empowerment, and perspective taking and empathy.