When I planned my wedding to my now-husband, many guests sent back their acceptance right away. The quick response gave me a small, happy mental boost because I knew that our friends and family were enthusiastically joining us. When I get a wedding invitation, I respond immediately because I suspect it makes the couple happy.
Road biking makes me slightly nervous, so I’m always so grateful when motorists slow down and give us a wide berth. I assume that other bicyclists feel the same way, so I slow way down and wait until I can safely pass them on the other side of the road.
When I speak, there are usually a few people in the audience (virtual or in-person) who smile the whole time. I’m grateful every time I see someone do this, and I suspect they have done a fair bit of public speaking themselves because they seem to know their smile is like a silent pep talk for the speaker.
The more experience we have, the more we learn about how to be kinder, gentler, nicer people to each other.
There’s still a lot of debate over whether virtual can ever be the same as in-person, but consider that we are on a learning curve right now.
We are learning:
- It doesn’t feel great to make a meaningful comment in the chat and get no response, so some people are carefully watching to raise those contributors and thoughts up.
- It might be awkward to participate in a small virtual group, so some participants make a point of inviting people who haven’t yet contributed to share.
- In live virtual sessions, speakers might be thrown by participants’ thinking-face or distracted-face, so many participants give speakers their full attention and physical feedback as appropriate.
- When small groups chat virtually, it’s sometimes hard to determine who gets to talk next, so some people give a little wave to indicate they have something to contribute but don’t want to interrupt.
Perhaps, right now, virtual meetings do not always quite feel as good as we remember in person because we are still learning etiquette for this type of gathering.