Communication is one of the most important tools with which we carry out our daily activities, it is a very useful ingredient in our bid to fulfil the essence of our livelihood.
Communication is the exchange of information between a sender and a receiver through a channel that must bear a communicative commonality between both parties.
A communication process can only be complete if the receiver understands the sender, as this is the bedrock of any meaningful and effective communication. It is the chain of understanding that integrates all the parties involved in the communication process.
As important as communication is in our personal and business lives, so also is the ability to ensure its effectiveness.
However, there are numerous problems that affect our communication, and hence, hinder it from being effective.
Simple issues that could be solved by being polite, analytical or constructive are being left to degenerate into conflict situations as parties refuse to reason along the path of what is being communicated.
There is no doubt that up till this present day, the lack of clear, effective and open communication is a common denominator in our dysfunctional families, societies and business relationships. This is because we continuously fail to communicate constructively, and in a clear manner. There are marriages greatly suffering because partners cannot speak honestly and openly at issues affecting their marriage. We have seen marriages crumble because of couples’ inability to address issues appropriately and constructively with each other, simply by failing to apply the basic communication requirements needed to promote tranquillity at home. Also, over 60% of work place problems are as a result of communication breakdown between and among work place staff. This trend increasingly, implies that there is still the need to foster effective communication in all parts of our society.
For communication to be effective and meaningful, you should always say what you mean the way you mean it and communicate your thoughts, feelings and opinions in a healthy and constructive way. The way you communicate is a manifestation of your wholeness as an individual and says a lot about you. If your communication skills fail to be adequately right, it snatches away the full benefit and potentials you can claim in both your social, career and personal life.
Sometimes, for the fear of unknown, or simply pulling back at something, you leave things unsaid, allowing them to fester within you, creating and deepening the roots of self- discomfort, dejection and perhaps hatred or other negative feelings towards yourself or the other person; invariably burying the cause for a great way to maintain good relationship both at home and at work.
When people fail to communicate their feelings, no one will know what is in your mind and this brings about breakdown in relationships. Learning to improve your communication skills can have positive and permanent impacts for you, your business or career, as well as your various relationships. Don’t forget that effective communication is a really great tool for driving home sales if you are a sales person.
Benefits of better and effective communication include; as promoting and maintaining good work environment and peaceful co-existence among people. Language skills is though the primary form of communication, sometimes expressing our selves with other body languages may well be more adequate than just using words of mouth. These choices in ways of communicating make it better to fully express your thoughts and feelings in different places, and different ways. As much as you want to be a good communicator, you should also learn to listen properly. We all know the hurt we feel when we realise that someone we are talking to is not listening, to us, or not paying enough attention. Hence, for any communication process to be successful and effective, listening is perhaps more important than talking, as the understanding that exists between both parties greatly, forms the bond.
Ability to communicate effectively though, may require great practice and the need to overcome your fear and self – consciousness; you will need to actively learn to talk with other people, to master the skills. Skills to initiate conversation, keep it going and ending it appropriately may seem a bit difficult, but trying these tips will definitely simplify the process for you.
- Learn to communicate your thoughts, feelings and opinions openly, honestly, and straightforwardly.
- Talking out of negative emotions such as anger, frustration, etc., is never beneficial as it rumples the communication process.
- When you have to give instructions or make numerous requests, do it sequentially, don’t muddle up things. Be logical, clear and direct when communicating and always complete your dialogues.
- Do not assume that your recipient knows what you intend to say.
- Understanding your communication skills and deficiencies help you structure your pattern and style of communication and ensures its effectiveness. Take time to study yourself and find ways to improve where necessary.
- Try to be flexible in your communication styles and approaches, by applying necessary and basic communication techniques at different times as you require.
- You should exert some control over the flow of the communication. When you have difficulties in expressing yourself at any given time, take a deep breath, get your points together, familiarise yourself with your message and see it flow within you as stress free as possible before voicing it out.
- Mind the tone of your verbal communication, as tones depict different meanings to what is said. Be sure of the impact you want your communication to have on your recipient in a bid to express yourself as intended and be understood in the same way.
- Good listening makes communication more productive, particularly when we listen, to understand in an empathetic and non-judgemental way.
- Always communicate with the spirit of understanding, positivity and respect.
All these tips are useful to make communication processes more effective at work and at home.
As an individual, it is a personal responsibility to discover the power of your communicative potentials and of utmost importance to use it, positively to your advantage. The way you communicate tells other people how you perceive yourself and also influences how other people relate to you.