Getting The Message Out

Natalie Morales recently did a TV investigation that shocked everyone who has ever emphasized “the message” as the best way to teach behaviors.  Message giving has always been the standard we use to correct and improve what we want in others.  If we get to say it again and again, we feel confident the message will get through and more productive actions will follow.

For example, the effects of that “Stranger Danger” message we teach our children came to sobering reality when Natalie Morales shared a personal news story.  As a professional TV correspondent and mother, Natalie had repeatedly told her son to avoid strangers.  This was a subject she shared with her family and spoke openly about for years.  Even though she felt that the message was crystal clear, it didn’t prevent her son and his friends from violating everything she thought she had been teaching.

With the lure of an ice cream truck, Natalie’s son and friends demonstrated the failure of repetitious parental messages.  TV audiences empathized with Natalie’s shock and then shared her disillusionment with those repeated warnings.  The weakness of words to ensure the behaviors we want, cannot continue to be ignored.  

Messages abound.  They are quick to say and they save time.  A parent says, “Mind your manners” or “Do your homework.”  A manager tells his people to “Team together” or “Customer service is our #1 priority.”  Messages alone don’t provide the changes we seek.  Sure our children know the stranger danger message, just like most workers can repeat verbatim the expectations of their manager.  Knowing the message does not mean DOING the message.

There are so many factors involved in behaviors besides “knowing.”  Brains may lead to thoughts and then to actions, but we’re ignoring the driver of all behaviors – FEELINGS.  The lure of ice cream sparks feelings that override thinking.  Our mind has the message we’re suppose to do, but feelings fuel what we do.  Giving a message time after time does nothing but dull the emotions that energize actions.  Emotional intelligence is the real message we need to use.

Getting brains to apply a message means action.  In the Natalie Morales TV story, it was revealed that the key to getting our young to apply messages was to rehearse them.  That’s right, going for the brain doesn’t include the body and emotions to do the behaviors we seek.  When we get out of our spectator positions and comfort zone to apply information, we change.  We are engaging brain, body and feelings in the act of doing.

This is how we learned to drive.  It wasn’t because of the lecture, manual or video.  Getting behind the wheel puts knowledge and feelings into action.  Through hands-on experience, we team brains, body and emotions into behaviors.  We even have the driver’s license to prove it.

A prime roadblock that inhibits messages is familiarity, our usual habits and regular routines.  Messages alone won’t change ingrained patterns without the motivation of emotions.  

Emotional intelligence doesn’t become smart without application.

Messages work when you’re on the MOVVE™ which is the procedural application of Elite Motivation.  MOVVE™ uses specialized emotionally intelligent communication practices to rally the pursuit and achievement of goals.  Hence messages get heard and applied.


My first book, Elite Motivation, can be found on Kindle and Amazon.  Follow this link to find out about it:

My Guidebook, which offers a graphic filled step-by-step format, can also be found on Amazon and Kindle.  Here’s the link:  MOVVE – The Five Keys of Elite Motivation

Contact Jamie Cox M.Ed., (509) 396-4307, email: or at our website:  Discover MOVVE™ our procedural application of Elite Motivation that walks the talk of messages, information and knowledge.









2 Responses to “Getting The Message Out”

  1. Lara says:

    Saved, I love your blog! :)

  2. Jeff says:

    I do love the way you have presented this issue plus it does provide us a lot of fodder for consideration. Thank you for this fantastic point, I respect the perspective.

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