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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.
  • respond to tips / share your experience.
  • share the tips that work for you.

 

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


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Tip 1 - Agree to disagree

Agree that you don't have to agree. By agreeing on this you might not feel the need to convince the other person of your opinion.

You can also get to know each other opinions in a calm way. Accept that the other persons opinion differs from yours, and that it is OK that you disagree on something.


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Tip 2 - 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 3 - Practice nonviolant communication

Practice with nonviolant communication (abbreviated NVC, also called Compassionate Communication or Collaborative Communication)

These are the four components of nonviolant communication:

1) Observation
2) Feelings
3) Needs
4) Requests

1) Observation = the facts

- I see....
- I hear.... is that correct?
- You say....
- I notice.....

2) Feelings = emotions or sensations, free of thought and story

- I feel....
- This triggers...... in me
- I notice I have trouble with....
- I feel sorry about....
- I am afraid that...
- I experience ...

3) Needs = express why something is important for you

- Because ...... is important to me
- Because I long for....
- It is important to me that...

4) Request = request for a specific action, free of demand, that meets your needs.

- How would it be for you to.....?
- What is it like for you to.....?
- Are you willing to.....?
- I would like to ask you to.... is that ok?
- I would like to hear your side of the story, could you tell me?
- Would you do this for me?
- Shall we do.... together?


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Tip 4 - 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 5 - 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 6 - Listen attentively to what the other is saying

Listen attentively to what the other is saying. Many people are thinking about what they are going to say while the other person is talking. They don't really listen to what the other person is saying.

Try to be really with your full attention with the listening.


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Tip 7 - 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 8 - Advice from the Dalai Lama

"When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know. But if you listen, you might learn something new."


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Tip 9 - 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 10 - Express what you want from the other

When you are you in a conflict, don't say what the other is doing wrong, rather express what you want from the other. This can prevent an escalation.


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Tip 11 - 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 12 - Find a counsellor

Are your experiencing communication issues and could you use some support?
therapist or counsellor can help you.


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Tip 13 - Be open to the opinion and arguments of the other

Be open to the opinion and arguments of the other person. And also be open to adjust your own opinion. You change, you get new information, so it is very natural to change opinion.

In politics you often see that every party has it's own opinions and arguments. Every party/politician is proclaiming his own opinion without really being open for opinions and arguments of other parties. It looks like a kind of theater play where it is clear from the beginning what everybody is going to say and what the outcome will be.

Politicians hardly ever change their opinion and arguments. And if they do it, it is not appreciated, because he is seen as not reliable. And they refer to the past. "But ten years ago you have said that...."

When you are not open to the opinions and arguments of others, then you are mainly proclaiming your own opinions. This cannot really be called 'communication'.


E.

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Tip 14 - Make sure to talk about the relation

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!


Ineke

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