As humans, we rely on communication to convey messages and feelings; however, communication is more than just saying things. It involves knowing when and how to communicate, and takes practice to become a great communicator.
So, how can you become a better communicator? Why is it important to have healthy communication? What are the steps to becoming a better communicator? This piece answers all these questions and more.
What is Healthy Communication?
Communication refers to the process of passing information from one place, person, or group to another. For any communication to be complete, there must be a sender and recipient of the information involved.
People can communicate through writing, speaking, or any other medium that can pass information for decoding.
Healthy communication simply refers to the ability to pass information from the sender to a receiver effectively. No misunderstandings—just straightforward communication.
Why Healthy Communication is Important
Healthy communication is important in many ways. For both individuals and groups, effective communication comes with the following benefits:
- Enhances trust between both parties
- Can prevent and/or solve problems
- Enhances clarity
- Helps to improve productivity in some settings
- Facilitates team building
- Creates stronger relationships
Steps to Become a Better Communicator
There is no doubt that healthy communication is important, especially in building relationships. It is therefore vital to work on our communication skills through the following ways:
1. Learn to Listen
Listening actively forms the foundation of any healthy conversation. It’s only by listening that you know whether something deserves a response or simply your understanding. For anything that requires a response, you can only do so if you listened and comprehended what had been said.
2. Pay Attention to Body Language
Non-verbal cues play a huge role in facilitating effective and healthy communication. When communicating with others, watch their body language. Fidgeting, standing still, yawning, smiling, frowning, grinning, and other body languages say a lot about people.
While paying attention to other people’s body language, do not forget your own. Always make sure that your body language delivers the information that you want to invoke.
3. Understand the Different Styles of Communication
People communicate in different ways. Some people are assertive, while others are passive. You need to learn and understand the different styles in order to communicate effectively with those around you.
4. Ask Questions
Do not assume or leave anything to chance. If it’s something that you cannot let go, ask. Assumptions and ignorance are some of the main contributing factors to bad communication.
However, while asking your questions, be careful not to touch on issues that may be sensitive to the other person. Make sure they are comfortable with what you are about to ask to keep both parties comfortable.
5. Use Active Language
Active language is incredibly effective when it comes to healthy communication. Depending on your relationship with the person you are communicating with, use active language to best convey your thoughts.
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