Communication Topics

Featured - Relationship Rescue!

Newest Additions To Our Conflict Resolution Library

Special Help: Learn To Communicate With Even The Most Upset People and Customers

Don't let difficult, angry customers control you. Learn to take control, stay cool, and remain professional in the toughest situations

Reviewer Praise From Amazon Readers

Bacal nails it! While more are messing with the entanglements of Customer Satisfaction which leads to no where...he addresses the specifics head on and focuses on the greater picture and ultimate goal of the Customer Experience which leads to Loyalty. Excellent job! (Macy in Oklahoma, 2013)
Five Stars on Amazon

One of the best things I learned from this book is how to turn a negative experience into a positive one. Using the tools from this gem of a book I have calmed people down, turned bad situations into good, and kept customers who would have otherwise left us and written ten nasty reviews in their wake. It is so empowering to be able to do that, rather than feel awful and abused. This is a must buy, must read for people who work with customers day in and day out. Do it for your own sanity, and to help improve your own job performance and satisfaction! (E. Meehan, California, 2012)
A five star review

Anyone who serves the public should have this book. It gives advice for everyone from the order taker at the fast food restaurant to higher level management. It also gives different techniques for different situations (ie retail store, office, call center etc.) I have only had this book for a few weeks and already I have improved my customer service skills. It's a wonderful tool.  (Lisa S. NJ)
Another satisfied reader

Available In Print From The Following

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Based On Imperfect Phrases For Relationships: The Book

Things You Should Never Say: Relationship Killers Crossword #1

Here's a fun way to look at how you communicate in your relationships, and learn what you should NOT say. Eliminating these IMPERFECT phrases will help you reduce both the amount and intensity of conflicts.


This puzzle is the first in a series based on my book, ImPerfect Phrases For Relationships: 101 COMMON Things You Should Never Say To Someone Important To You... And What To Say Instead which is available in print from amazon for about $12.00


Not only does this powerful book tell you want NOT to say, but it provides much more constructive ways of saying similar things.

Learn to replace destructive talk with constructive talk. Share it with your partner.

Things You Should Never Say: Relationship Killers Crossword #1

Copyright 2015 by Robert Bacal (Bacal & Associates)

Complete the crossword, then click on "Check" to check your answer. If you are stuck, you can click on "Hint" to get a free letter. Click on a number in the grid to see the clue or clues for that number. If you would like to view the completed puzzle, click on the completed puzzle link below to view it in a new window.
        1    2            
3        4                
 5         6           7     
 8                 9      
         10          11     
  12               13       
           14          15   
  17    18      19     20           


1. Do you have any idea ___ ___ _____? Using a question to start insulting someone in an indirect manner.
3. Don't take this the ____ ____ but... Almost always accompanied by criticism or negative comments, usually phrased in a way that is personal and upsetting.
5. _____ verbal abuse is common. We all make mistakes when angry or irritated, so monitor your conversation to see if you are unintentionally putting down another person.
6. Aggressive response that usually distracts from a disagreement.
8. One of the more infuriating and useless attempts at impacting the mood of another. Usually makes an argument worse.
9. Get to __, and you will send the message that you and the other person can work together and are on the same side even if you are angry right now.
10. Are you having your _____ today? An attempt to brush off a concern as a result of hormones, rather than deal with the actual concern.
11. In an argument, beginning sentences with ___ makes it sound like you are attacking the other person, and not willing to take some responsibility for making things better.
12. Well meant effort to help someone feel better. However, it tends to invalidate the person's sad emotion or reason for being sad.
14. Because those are the ____ . Often used by parents to children, and based the conversation on power without providing any rational explanation of WHY.
16. How ___ ___ say that you won't... Yet another example of an implied criticism/disagreement dressed up as a questions. Say what you mean.
20. Couples that ____ ___ have more successful relationships, and have much lower divorce rates, so research suggests.
21. __ _ ____ ___ ____ constructive criticism? Usually followed by negative comments dressed up as being helpful.
22. Nobody likes to be ordered around, and people tend to resist, so don't phrase your comments in the form of a ______.
23. Don't take it so _______. A command, which escalates, plus invalidating the concern of another person.
24. ________ _____ with me. An attempt to pressure someone to give in by talking about "they", and implying that other person is in a minority, and is wrong.


2. The ultimate brush off. What it really means is "I don't care what you have to say". Infuriating.
4. A criticism make in the form of a comment. Often used in a passive aggressive way.
7. A way of communicating that the other person is stupid, or has a hearing impairment because he or she disagrees. Manipulation.
13. _ _________ are good because they suggest you take responsibility, but remember that it's not all about you.
15. An example of over-generalization that tends to introduce more argument about whether it's really "every time"/
17. Robert _____ wrote the book this crossword is based on: IMperfect Phrases For Relationships.
18. Another often well meaning attempt to help someone, that really focuses on the speaker's discomfort and not the emotions of the distraught person.
19. Don't do me any _____. A put down usually associated with a person giving in and offering to do what was asked of him/her. Nasty.


About Company

Bacal & Associates was founded in 1992. Since then Robert has trained thousands of employees to deal with angry, hostile, abusive and potentially violent customers. He has authored over 20 books on various subjects, many published by McGraw-Hill.


Robert Bacal

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  • The only way to further success is to challenge the existing "wisdom" through critical thinking and basing our services and books on a complex reality.

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  • Casselman
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  • Canada, K0A 1M0