Why do we communicate in the first place? Well, we‘re social beings after all! It’s not only necessary; it’s in our nature. Communication helps us build and strengthen relationships.
Yet ironically, a lot of misunderstandings and ruined relationships can also be traced due to miscommunication or poor communication skills. This just goes to show how effective communication is imperative to form not just any kind of relationships with others but to sustain positive, healthy ones.
Here are 3 tips to help you build skills to communicate better:
Respect. To gain respect, one has to earn it. And it starts with how you communicate with others. Do you want to be understood? Listened to? Feel valued? Then actively listen, understand and value others first. What goes around does come around.
Empathy. Put yourself in other people’s shoes. Many make the mistake of thinking that communication is all about talking. But 50% of it is also about listening. Avoid being egoistic and end up solely talking about yourself. Try to see things from other people’s perspectives.
Clarity. There are many other ways aside from using the right words to make yourself clear. Use appropriate gestures. Apply non-verbal communication like your tone of voice or posture to emphasize certain points. Ask the other party if he/she has any questions. Summarize or restate what you heard after the other party has finished speaking.
This list of course is by no means exhaustive. But it’s a good start to practice being a better communicator. And as you so do, you’re also well on your way to establishing and sustaining better relationships.