Effective Communication

November 3- Today I am thankful that I was able to sleep in a warm bed, and have a day off from all the hustle of life. Have some time for myself.

Effective communication skills are fundamental to success in many aspects of life. Many jobs require strong communication skills. People with good communication skills usually enjoy better interpersonal relationships with friends and family.

Effective communication is the key for interpersonal skill and learning how to improve your communication. But, people sometimes find it difficult to know where to start. This article will give the most common problem areas and may suggest where you might focus your attention.

This was a difficult area I struggled with. Since I grew up not being able to talk. I didn’t learn any social communication skills. Therefore I didn’t speak very much for many years. I didn’t learn the techniques until I was about forty nine years old.

Identifying Problems

Many people appreciate that they have a problem with communication skills but, struggle to start to improve. There are several ways that you can identify problem areas.

Ask your friends and family to advise you. Most people will be happy to help you towards self-improvement.

You can simply work to improve the most common problems area and see what happens. Which was what I did, I used my husband as a guinea pig. I just started talking and while he didn’t give me any advice he listened. At that’s exactly what I needed him to do.

Learn to listen- One of the most common areas to need improvement is listening. We all tend to forget that communication is a two-way process. We fall into the trap of broadcasting when we just have an issue with a message, and fail to listen to the response. Many times we are not listening to others in conversation, but thinking about what we plan to say next.

Improving our listening skills is likely to pay off to improvements in our relationships both at work and at home.

What is listening? Listening is not the same as hearing. Learning to listen to messages not only paying attention to the words being spoken but also how they are being spoken and the non-verbal messages sent with them. It means giving our full attention to the person speaking, not genuinely concentrating on what they are saying- and what they are not saying.

In today’s world, people are allowing their mobile devices to distract themselves and not communicating with the people sitting right next to them. It is very bad for interpersonal communication and we will someday regret it.

Good listeners use the techniques of clarification and reflection to confirm what the other person has said and avoid any confusion. These techniques also demonstrate very clearly that you are listening.

It is very important to consider and understand non-verbal communication particularly when it’s absent or reduced by phone conversations.

Non-verbal communication is often thought of as body language, but it covers far more. It includes, for example, tone and pitch of the voice, body movement, eye contact, posture facial expression, and even physiological changes such as sweating.

You can understand other people better by paying close attention to their non-verbal communication. You can also ensure that your words and body language are consistent.

Then there is the issue of questioning skills. Questioning is a crucial skill to ensure that you have understood someone’s message correctly. This is a way of obtaining more information about a particular topic or simply starting a conversation and keeping it going. Those with good questioning skills are very good listeners because they tend to spend far more time drawing information out from others that broadcasting their own opinions.

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