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Communication issues - Tips


Tips for coping with communication issues

Would you like some tips and advice how to deal with communication issues?

This forum is a great place to:

 

  • explore several tips.
  • share the tips that work for you.

 

What's your tip how to deal with communication issues?

Overview of tips




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All tips


Tip 1 - Do you want contact or do you want to be right?

In communication it is often about power, who is right and who is wrong?

Consider: do I want to be right or do I want to be in contact?


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Tip 2 - Practice to say no

Do you tend to always say yes to requests from others, because you want to please, while actually you do not want to? Then it is good to practice saying no and make space for something you do want.

Learn to say "no". Saying no doesn't have to be hard. You can always ask for time to think about it when you feel overwhelmed by a request from a colleague/ friend/ family member/ acquaintance/ .....

You do not have to make up excuses when you say no. Many people tend to cover their 'no' with excuses, little lies, or falsehoods. Keep it open and simple. If you don't feel like it or don't have time for it, you can simply say that.

The "broken recordplayer method" is very convenient when you have said no, but the other one is insisting. The only thing you have to do in this method, is to repeat your 'no' and the motivation for it. Like a recordplayer that is broken and keeps repeating the same part. This way you do not get seduced to discussions or making excuses.

Set your limit when somebody crosses them. You are the only one that can feel where your limit is.

When you don't allow yourself to say 'no', this can give you a lot of stress and tension.


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Tip 3 - Also consider the nonverbal communication

Also consider the nonverbal communication of the person you are talking to. Check for example the body language:

- Is the posture open or closed
- How does the other move?
- Is he/she looking you in the eyes or not?
- Is the other hasty or relaxed?
- etc.


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Tip 4 - Communicate open and clear

Communicate open and clear your opinion and what you would like.

Don't turn around it and don't cover it up. Don't work with hidden agenda's or strategies. Be open, honest, real.

Then the other person one knows what he or she is up to and can respond to what you really think.


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Tip 5 - Be open and curious without judgments

Many fights and misunderstandings are caused, by thinking we know what the other person means and we stop listening what the other is saying. We presume our interpretations are right, which does not support a good communication.

An open, curious attitude without judgments is important when you honestly want to communicate with the other. So:

1. Listen attentively, without judgments

2. Ask questions, and...

3. If needed, repeat in your own words to check if you have understood the other well.


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Tip 6 - Share your story

For many people it helps to write down and share their story with others. You can share your story on the communication-issues-peer-support-forum on this website.


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Tip 7 - Make sure to talk about the relationship

In interpersonal communication, the relationship level is just as important as the content level. In general, problems and conflicts are more on the relationship level then the content level. (Watzalawick)

It is important to be aware on that, so that you do not just talk about the facts, but also about the relating!


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Tip 8 - Listen Actively and Empathetically

Active listening involves fully concentrating on what is being said rather than just passively 'hearing' the message of the speaker. It includes giving your full attention to the speaker, understanding their message, responding thoughtfully, and remembering the discussion. Empathetic listening goes a step further by trying to understand the speaker's feelings, thoughts, and meanings from their perspective. To practice this, paraphrase what has been said to show understanding, and ask open-ended questions to clarify and delve deeper into the conversation. This approach not only helps in understanding the other person better but also makes them feel valued and heard, fostering a deeper connection.



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Tip 9 - Establish and Respect Boundaries

Effective communication also means being clear about your boundaries and respecting the boundaries of others. Boundaries can be emotional, physical, or even digital. Clearly communicating your boundaries helps prevent misunderstandings and builds trust between individuals. It's also important to respect others' limits by acknowledging and adhering to their expressed needs and comfort levels. This mutual respect creates a safe space for open dialogue and healthy interactions. When boundaries are communicated clearly and respected, it sets the foundation for a relationship based on trust and mutual respect.



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Tip 10 - Use "I" Statements to Express Yourself

"I" statements are a powerful tool in communication that allow you to express your feelings and thoughts without blaming or accusing the other person. This technique involves framing your messages around your own experiences and feelings rather than focusing on the other person's perceived faults or actions. For example, instead of saying, "You make me feel ignored," you could say, "I feel ignored when I'm speaking, and the attention isn't on the conversation." This approach minimizes defensiveness in the recipient and opens up the space for a more constructive and empathetic conversation. It encourages taking personal responsibility for one's feelings and promotes clarity and honesty in communication.



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