Have you ever noticed that being mentally tired is so much more exhausting than being physically tired?

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: Red always looks forward to Fridays as they tend to be "lighter" Red & Black days, which lets her catch up from the week, as well as get herself organized for the inevitable Monday morning onslaught of Black's weekend research and work, resulting in lots and lots of emails. And even though not a pressure-filled day, most Friday's Red finds herself not only physically tired, but mentally exhausted due to the pandemic on top of the presidential election, both of which created more stress than normal. Assuming anyone can even remember what "normal" is …

But today's different. Very different. Red's not sure if it's due to watching less TV because there was less genuine breaking news (vs. everything that's just promoted as "Breaking News") or because there was less political drama originating from the White House. Or a combination of the two. Regardless, she just felt more relaxed. Of course, there are things that make her roll her eyes (she does that a lot), things that concern her, things that will take a long time to be resolved, but Red welcomed the fact there was a lot more calm and a lot less chaos. And for the first time in a very long time, she wasn't heading into the weekend totally exhausted.

The funny thing is when she mentioned this to Black, preparing herself for a detailed and research-filled response, Black merely said,

This is one of those rare occasions where analyzing and understanding the "WHY" adds nothing, so I will say nothing … except … relax and enjoy.

Ok, let’s be clear (pun intended) … Communication is critical. Whether in your personal life or in business, not to mention communication skills are transferable between the two (Black even suggested Red hold family “business” meetings). And what better time to work on how we communicate, and maybe even have a new attitude toward vocabulary and “50-cent words” (Red loves those, but terminology scares her!?), than during Effective Communications Month.

Talking isn't the same as communicating. And hearing isn't the same as listening. Think about it.

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: Being an effective communicator, whether in our personal lives or at work, is a critical skill but one-size-doesn't-fit-all as we each use very different methods and styles … ranging from lots of words and talking stuffed animals (Red) to bullet points and racing flags (Black).

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Most workaholics can rationalize working all the time. At least to themselves.

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: “Gizmos” already blurred the lines between the workweek and the weekend, but the WFH (working from home) “revolution” caused by the pandemic has destroyed the line; except for people like Black, who have always treated every day as a workday.

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We all “celebrate” Memorial Day differently, but we all should remember it’s a day to honor those who gave their lives serving this country.

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: Memorial Day may be the unofficial start of summer, and Red remembers celebrating over the years with family get-togethers, barbeques, and pool parties; whereas Black “celebrates” most holidays by having a quiet day to work uninterrupted, but it’s important never to forget the significance of the holiday.

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