Positive comments – are yours 5 to 1?

by Betty Lochner on March 21, 2016

When words are both true and kind, they can change our world. ~ Buddha


Are you a positive communicator?  Do you focus on what’s going well instead of what isn’t going well?  Do you regularly practice appreciation and gratitude?  Are your words kind and positive?

Are you sure?

Many of us don’t think much about how we come across. Quite frankly, we aren’t all that self aware. We tend to think we come off better and more positive than we really do.

Studies show that positive to negative comments should be in a 5 to 1 ratio for a relationship to be healthy and survive long term. That means we should be saying 80% positive and not more than 20% negative comments to each other.

So, how are you doing?

Spend some time today paying attention to how many times you say something positive vs. how many times you say something negative to or about someone.  Especially keep track of how you do with the most important relationships in your life. Keep a checklist of how many positive comments you make and how many times you catch yourself saying, thinking about, or getting ready to say a negative comment.  How did you do?

Are your positive comments 5 to 1?


Betty Lochner is the Owner of Cornerstone Coaching & Training. She specializes in personal and organizational transformation and is the author of  Dancing with Strangers: Communication skills for transforming your life at work and at home and 52 Communication Tips.

To find out more about Cornerstone’s services and offerings visit our website:






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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Betty Lochner January 5, 2011 at 8:41 pm

Thanks, Susan. I’m looking forward to it too!

2 Susan Woodall Ford January 5, 2011 at 7:53 am

Just thinking about and focusing on making more positive comments in my communication brings the awareness that I need to improve in this area! Thank you Betty and I’m really looking forward to your Communication Skills Workshop on Jan. 14th!

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