Computer programmers developing innovative translation software in the 1980s tried converting Hamlet’s famous line “To be, or not to be, that is the question” from English to Japanese and back again. They received “It is, it is not, what is it?”
When they tried translating, “out of sight, out of mind” from English to Russian and back again, they got “invisible idiot.”
You may have experienced this when you read an email or had a conversation with someone. Which should make you wonder how people perceive you.
In an interview with The Atlantic2, Heidi Grant Halvorson said, “If I ask you about how you see yourself—what traits you would say describe you—and I ask someone who knows you well to list your traits, the correlation between what you say and what your friend says will be somewhere between 0.2 and 0.5. There’s a big gap between how other people see us and how we see ourselves.”
Being cognizant of how others and we are wired can help ward off communication struggles.