I had never really considered myself lacking in communication skills or empathy before supporting at COR; but I have definitely increased my proficiency in those skills since then. I am now more capable of communicating more efficiently in situations that might seem uncomfortable at times and I have also gotten better at using constructive criticism more thoughtfully and carefully so as to inspire rather than infuriate.
The concept of Gentle Teaching has really changed the way that I see social interactions, not only while at work, but in my day-to-day life. Although some might think of Gentle Teaching as a retreat from speaking your mind, I have come to realize that there is no need to shorten necessary and beneficial communication for the sake of seeming gentle.
There are far too many wasted opportunities for growth in the world. Whenever a conversation that could enable an opportunity for learning is avoided, at least two people suffer, both the learner and the teacher. A strong communication network is important in every aspect of the interaction.