Communication is the key to connecting with others. Many people lack the basic skills to listen, be present and actually hear and understand what another is saying. We live in a society where we all feel entitled to speak about ourselves and how we feel. We want to be understood instead of seeking to understand.
How do we start to learn the necessary steps to effective communication? Below is my top 10 tips on how to communicate.
Be present in the moment listening actively. Don’t be on your phone, making something in the kitchen, fidgeting around or watching TV. Show one another that your more important than your Facebook and Snapchat.
Stop responding to everything others are saying. Sometimes you can stay quiet. No-one really cares about your opinion. Keep them to yourself. Write a blog. Be the student instead of the know it all. Enter into every conversation like you have something to learn. Be open.
Start thinking about phrasing questions starting with: Who, what, where, when and how. This allows for communication to grow and not have one word answers. Instead of saying “did you have a good day?” Rephrase it, “tell me about your day?” You won’t get short yes or no responses.
Thoughts will come in and let them go out. You do not always have to be thinking about your response when someone else is talking. Be a listener. Nobody really needs to hear your opinion or your thoughts.
Stop trying to be an expert in every field. It’s just obnoxious and nobody likes it. It is not about you.
If someone is talking about the death of a loved one don’t jump in and tell them about your experience with the death of a loved one. It is not the same. Stop talking about yourself. Experiences are very individual. You don’t have to take that time to talk about how special you are or how much you’ve suffered or how great you are.
It’s condescending and annoying. Especially to your children and in the workplace.
Stop giving names, dates, details, places, etc. People don’t care about those things. What they care about is you.
When your mouth is wide open then you’re not listening. When you talk you want to be center of attention, you feel in control. But you also get distracted. The human speaks at an average of 225 words per minute but can listen at a rate of 500 words per minute. So the rest of that we make up in being distracted or thinking about what we will say next while others are talking. People do not listen to understand. Most people listen with the intent to reply and get their point across. They become angry and anxious when they have to wait.
Nobody likes to hear someone else go on and on and on. Get to the point. It’s boring to listen to someone who likes to hear himself talk nonstop. If you want to be effective say it clear and get to the point.
If your having communication problems and it is causing significant damage to your personal relationships, it may be wise to talk to a therapist. Communication Counseling Orlando can help equip you with the skills and insight needed to bring about effective and lasting change.
Call today 407-967-1327 and let’s get started on learning to be an effective and authentic listener.