brp-045 - dave frees

 Better Relationship Podcast Episode #045

The 6 Word Question to Get What You Want!  with David Frees

David Frees is an attorney, author, and speaker is a master of teaching enhanced communication and how to go from being persuasive to being truly influential. He chats with Susie about how to use effective communication tools and techniques to improve relationships. Dave shares “the 6 word question” he uses to get the results he wants with everyone from coworkers to kids.

How to do become better communicator:

  • Become flexible in the context of relationships
  • Increase your sense of acuity to listen better- develop situational awareness
  • Develop great listening skills
  • Cultivate the ability to respond vs react in tough conversations

Robust Toolbox and Techniques:

  • Dave teaches strategies and principles that guide the way we use the tools/tactics.
  • Hone the way we think about communication- and use the techniques to respond rather than react.
  • Strategic thinkers – cultivate flexibility and use techniques and tools – if they work great, if not – that is okay. They move on and use another technique.

A Favorite Tool:

Breathing techniques (Navy Seals train uses this breathing treatment)

  • Breath in to a count of 4
  • Hold for a count of 4
  • Breath out for a count of 4
  • Empty lungs for a count of 4

When you do this breathing technique: It’s Impossible to feel angry and anxiety – your brain is telling you- it’s going to be okay.

  • Work on catching yourself early, by being aware of feelings as they surface.
  • Changes the direction and tone of the conversation.
  • Calmer and able to think more clearly, and stay flexible.
  • Accesses creative ways to handle situation.

Dave wrote a Parenting book that is based on how interrogators and spies work.

All the principles he teaches in the book will work with business relationships

Dave advocates asking The 6-word question, when you are faced with resistance.

When you ask a child to do something:

  • Child says: “No I can’t!

What is your usual response?

  • “Yes you can!” negates what they said, and sets up an argumentative tone.

Good Negotiators know an argument is never the way to win a point.

Dave suggests saying:

  • “I know you feel like you can’t… yet.” (looks like I am agreeing)

Using these words:

  • “feel” makes it temporary
  • “yet” presumes they will be able to

And this begins the process of their brain picturing the solution in their brain.

Then Dave asks the 6 word question,  “I just curious, what would happened if you did?”

How to Apply the 6 Word Question At Work:

“Can you have this report done and to the client by Friday?”

  • Change tone, lean in – which draws the person in by provoking curiosity.

“I know you feel like you can’t, yet…”

  • Ask: “What would have to change or happen for you to feel completely sure you can get it done by Tuesday?”

“What could you take off your plate?”

You are tossing the problem out for them to solve vs. solving it for them.

Invariably they find an answer and problem solve remove barrios due to this strategy questions.

For more impact and persuasion: pay attention to their language and use it.

FREE video of Dave teaching how to use the 6 word question 

Better Communication Through Shared language:

  • Referenced a story in Listen, Learn, Love about how communication getting lost in the meaning of words. (Wedding band story)
  • Reality: the words we say don’t necessarily mean the same thing to them
  • How do you help people slow down to create understanding and shared language

Your responsibility for the communication – don’t assume you are clear and people understand what you said.

Example: Turkey sandwich story.

  • We each picture a turkey sandwich differently.
  • Illustrates the differences of how we perceive and encode language/words
  • Incredibly diverse and people are shocked at how differently the understanding and perceptions are.

Good communication on the front end saves time, energy, and frustration.

Shared language/shorthand develops and yet we can assume that our words mean the same thing we picture.

  • How we use language can make a difference in relationships at work and at home in profound ways.
  • We can clarify: “By the way, the ____ I am talking about is____”

Responsibility of communication on the speaker rather than the hearer. When there is a miscommunication, take responsibility.

This grows as a pattern of behavior amidst the team and creates better relationships, workplace, and understanding.

Effective Communication can make or break your business, and your professional and personal relationships.

Lots of free resources & you can connect with Dave on Facebook


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 Live event – 3 Days to Success:

Dave & Jacko Willink: Seal teams leader & trainer, author of NY Times bestseller Extreme Leadership: How the Navy SEALS Lead and Win, in Phoenix in September.

Dave and Jacko will be teaching the force multipliers, communication skills, leadership skills –  Business driven event, but huge crossover between business and personal.

Check it out:


Susie’s website:

Susie’s book: