Effective communication skills are fundamental to success in many aspects of life. Many jobs require strong communication skills. People with good communication skills also usually enjoy better interpersonal relationships with friends and family. i.e. its important to improve your Communication Skills.
1. Learn to Listen.
One of the most common areas to need improvement is listening.
We all have a tendency to forget that communication is a two-way process. We fall into the trap of ‘broadcasting’, where we just issue a message and fail to listen to the response. Quite a lot of the time, we are not really listening to others in conversation, but thinking about what we plan to say next.
Good listeners use the techniques of clarification and reflection to confirm what the other person has said and avoided any confusion. These techniques also demonstrate very clearly that you are listening, just like active listening.
2. Studying and Understanding Non-Verbal Communication.
Much of any message is communicated non-verbally. Some estimates suggest that this may be as much as 80% of communication.
It is therefore important to consider and understand non-verbal communication—particularly when it is absent or reduced, such as when you are communicating in writing or by telephone.
You can, therefore, understand other people better by paying close attention to their non-verbal communication.
3. Emotional Awareness and Management.
The third undersung area of communication is awareness of our own and other people’s emotions, and an ability to manage those emotions.
At work, it is easy to fall into the trap of thinking that everything should be logical, and that emotion has no place. However, we are human and therefore messy and emotional. None of us can leave our emotions at home—and nor should we try to do so. That is not to say that we should ‘let it all hang out’. However, an awareness of emotions, both positive and negative, can definitely improve communication.
4. Body language is as important as the words you speak.
Improve Your Communication Skills by Body language as it is, for the most part, automatic and transmits how we’re feeling emotionally in any given moment. However, your body language also communicates to others how you’re feeling, sometimes communicating emotions we wish not to show – like a lack of confidence.
5. People don’t really care (so relax).
When we communicate with others, we tend to think that they’re judging us about every other thing we do and say. This affects everything we do when we communicate with others, whether we notice it or not.
The truth is, most of us are just too self-absorbed to care (in a natural kind of “that’s our nature” way, not a conceit). We’re too busy thinking to ourselves that you’re judging us oftentimes. And if the person doesn’t care, they’re definitely never judging you the way we tend to convince ourselves others are.
What is happening within us often magnifies what’s going on outside of us. So if you can remind yourself of this when you’re communicating it will give you a sense of relief that allows you to relax and communicate more clearly and confidently.