Good communication skills are vital to us both in our professional lives and in our personal lives. The main advantage of possessing good communication skills is the fact that you understand the other person better, thus minimizing the risk for conflicts and ensuring that tasks are done efficiently and being fully aware of the goals.
Here are three good communication skills which you should strive to improve. And, while it takes a certain amount of time and effort to do so, the benefits of being able to communicate efficiently are well worth it!
Listening to someone is different than hearing someone’s words. It involves paying full attention to the speaker, focusing solely on what he has to say. You need to be able to convey to the speaker the fact that you are hearing and understanding his or her words, as this will help create a certain bond between him and you.
Don’t interrupt the speaker, and don’t give examples of previous experiences you’ve went through and how you’ve dealt with that certain situations. People appreciate that less often than you think, and you’ll make the other person feel that you don’t understand the basic differences between you and him or her.
2. Body language
When we communicate we don’t communicate just through words. We also communicate with our hands and bodies, with our facial expressions, the tone of our voice and even the way we breath. In fact, people are much more likely to disregard a positive message if our body language is negative than if the body language says the same thing as our verbal language.
Therefore it is important to use open body language as often as possible – arms uncrossed, hands with palms open, legs slightly opened, and maintaining eye contact with the person you are talking to.
3. Manage stress
Although at a first glance stress has nothing to do with communication, our levels of stress can stop us from effectively communicating. That happens because when we are stressed we tend to pay less attention to what goes on around us. As a result, it’s very likely that you will misinterpret people and messages, or send mixed messages yourself. This is why you need to realize when you’re stressed and just take a moment to relax before you communicate about something important. You’ll thank yourself later.