Communication for healthier relationships
Having good communication skills is the key to a healthy relationship, whether it is for personal or business. It's the best way to resolve conflicts and keep things running smoothly. If you're not communicating effectively, it can lead to misunderstanding and resentment.
If you're not sure how to communicate effectively, this blog can help you. To improve your communication skills you need to be aware of what they are and consciously practice.
Benefits of having good communication skills
Good communication skills can not only provide healthy relationships, it can also improve your life and career.
Some benefits of having good communication skills are:
1. You will be able to better understand yourself.
2. It can help you build and maintain healthier relationships with the people around you.
3. It can make conflicts and disagreements easier to resolve.
4. It can help you better understand and respond to the needs of others.
5. It can make it easier for you to express your own needs and wants.
6. It can help you feel more confident in yourself and your abilities.
7. It can help you better navigate through difficult life experiences.
8. It can help you better manage stress and anxiety.
9. It can improve your overall mental and emotional health.
10. It can lead to success in your personal, business and professional life.
Improving your communication skills
While some people innately can communicate better than others, communication skills are certainly something we can improve on over time. Like any other skills, the more we use them, the more we get better. Below are some of the most important communication skills:
Imagine talking to someone who doesn't look interested in what you are saying. Isn't that the worst feeling? Don't be that person, practice active listening.
Active listening is one of the most important communication skills. It involves hearing what the other person is saying, understanding their message, and responding appropriately through words and/or body language. It's important to give the person your full attention when they're speaking. This means making eye contact, not interrupting, and not letting your mind wander. If you are on the phone, you have to acknowledge, respond appropriately, and paraphrase to show the other person you are actively listening.
Listening is an active process that requires you to do more than just hearing the words. You have to be able to understand the meaning of what's being said and how it affects you. It's also important to be aware of the nonverbal cues, such as body language and tone of voice, which can give you clues about how the other person is feeling.
If you want to be a better listener, there are some things you can do to improve your skills.
- Pay attention: Make an effort to really focus on what the other person is saying. Turn off distractions, such as the TV or your phone, and give them your full attention.
- Show that you're listening: Use body language, such as making eye contact, nodding, and responding appropriately. You can also repeat back or paraphrase, what the person has said to show that you understand.
- Ask questions: If you're not sure about something, ask for clarification. This shows that you're interested in what they're saying and that you want to understand.
- Be patient: Don't interrupt the other person or finish their sentences for them. Let them finish what they're saying before you respond.
Respecting the other person's feelings and needs
Another important communication skill is respecting the other person's feelings and needs. This means being considerate of their feelings and not trying to control the conversation. It's important to remember that everyone has different needs and reactions towards a situation, so you need to be open-minded.
Imagine you are upset, angry or in a difficult situation. Would you take an advise or help from someone who has never experienced or at least has no idea in what you are going through? Well, you might. However, most people prefer someone who understands their feelings and had gone through similar experiences.
Sometimes emotional connection is not present and it can be difficult to know what the other person is feeling, especially if you have not gone to similar experience and the other person is not communicating openly. If this is the case, it's important to ask questions and try to put yourself in their shoes. If you're still not sure, it's okay to say that you don't know how they feel or what they need. The important thing is that you're trying to be considerate and use empathy statements to at least let the other person know their feelings are valid.
Example of empathy statements:
"I can see that you are upset, I don't blame you."
"I can only imagine what you've been through."
"You are must be disappointed or not happy with how you were treated."
"I've been there, I understand your frustration."
Honesty and transparency
Being honest and transparent is another important communication skill. This means being open and truthful about your thoughts, feelings, and needs. It's important to be honest with yourself first and then with the other person. If you made a mistake, own it. Let the other person know what you did wrong, apologize, take responsibility and offer solutions. If you're not honest, it can lead to misunderstanding, resentment, lost of trust, and ultimately end of relationship.
Being honest doesn't mean that you have to share everything about yourself all at once. You can take your time and share things as you feel comfortable. However, it's important to be consistently honest about your feelings, needs, and current situation in order to have a healthy relationship.
Compromise is an important communication skill because it allows people to find a mutually acceptable solution. It's important to remember that not everyone will agree all the time, so you need to be willing to compromise. This doesn't mean that you have to give in all the time, but it does mean that you need to be willing to meet in the middle.
For example, if you're planning a trip with your partner and you both have different ideas about where to go, you can try to find a compromise. Maybe you can choose a destination that's halfway between your two choices. Or, you can take turns choosing the destination for future trips.\
Below are some scenarios that can help you in seeing the difference between bad vs effective communication:
Wife: Hi Honey, I just had the worst experience with a coworker earlier and..
Husband: (Interrupts wife from talking). You always have bad experience at work. (Continues to watch TV).
Wife: Hi Honey, I just had the worst experience with a coworker earlier and I just had to let it out.
Husband: Oh, really? (Turns off TV and makes eye contact with wife). I can see why you are stressed out. I hope I can help, come here and tell me all about it.
Customer: Hi, I just bought this product and it's not working. I want a refund.
Clerk: (Looks uninterested). Fill out this form to get a refund. (Takes the product and answered the phone to assist another customer).
Customer: Hi, I just bought this product and it's not working. I want a refund.
Clerk: (Puts on a sad face and makes eye contact with customer). I'm sorry to hear that. I can see you are disappointed, I would be If I got a defective product myself. Listen, this really doesn't happen often and I want to make it up to you. Can I offer you a replacement product plus a freebie for the trouble instead?
Customer: No thanks, I just want to return this and move on, but I appreciate the offer.
Clerk: Not a problem. Please fill out this form and we'll provide you a full refund. (Gets the product). I hope you will still consider our service in the future, I promise we'll do better.
Customer: I will. Thank you for your help!
Having good and effective communication skills is an important aspect of any relationship. People who can effectively communicate often have healthier and longer-lasting relationships than those who can't. While conflicts and misunderstandings are unavoidable, with good communication skills, these difficult situations can be easily be resolved. By improving your communication skills, you are also improving your relationships with your friends, love ones and other important people in your life.
How can we help?
We know that time and distance is always a factor. Voiply is a residential and business VoIP provider that offers cloud-based VoIP solutions. Our VoIP phone service can definitely help you achieve a healthier relationship through communication. Check out our order page to learn more about VoIPLy plans. Thanks for reading!