Effective communication can improve relationships within your family, at work, and in other situations of your life. These four useful tips for better communication in relationships will help you work on and improve your communication skills.
Understand the communication process
Communication is a two-way process that involves verbal and nonverbal messages. The communication process requires feedback; however, barriers may cause you not to understand what someone is saying, and affect the flow of communication. These hindrances could include language differences, inattentiveness, distraction, and emotional states. Begin by finding out if you are communicating effectively in your daily life.
Develop effective listening skills
While listening is a critical part of communication, it is not understood by many people. It is important that you listen carefully first, and acknowledge what you hear before you speak. Pay attention to the person you are speaking with, through proper eye contact and by re-stating briefly what you heard. In addition, show that you are understanding by asking questions. Ask open-ended questions to get the responses you need to better understand the person’s point of view. This promotes conversation and encourages the person to share his or her thoughts and feelings.
Promote helpful speaking strategies
When you speak, you need to get your message across and connect to others. This is essential for better communication in relationships. Use “I” statements to make specific requests instead of “you” statements that could sound like you are attacking the other person. Be sure to express yourself clearly and completely as you give the person information about what you are experiencing. Choose the right time, use pleasant tones, and be courteous and respectful. Always be sensitive to the other person’s needs, feelings, and opinions.
Pay attention to nonverbal communication
Nonverbal communication involves expressing your thoughts and feelings without speaking. You send many nonverbal messages when you are speaking and listening. It is essential that you improve your nonverbal skills–often, the way in which something is said, can be more important than what is said. Nonverbal behaviors include as facial expressions, body movements, and gestures. Facial expressions can convey happiness, sadness, or anger, for example.
Your nonverbal message can be an effective communication tool, but make sure your words match your nonverbal messages. Make sure your body language indicates that you are attentive. For example, leaning forward with an open posture helps the receiver know that you are listening to what he or she is saying. Similarly, try to understand and respond positively to the other person’s own nonverbal communication.
By using these helpful tips, you could make better communication a part of your daily life and improve your relationships.
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