Everyone communicates, but each of us communicates differently. And, as I’m sure you’ve noticed, some communication styles are more effective than others.
You will find a series of classifications, but the three main communication styles are: passive, aggressive, and assertive. Of these, the most efficient is the assertive communication style. It’s a style that also takes into account the needs of the other person. At the same time, an assertive communicator knows his boundaries and will not agree to something just because someone else wants him to. It’s a straight-forward style of communication that shows confidence – the communicator speaks his mind and doesn’t try to manipulate the other person. Curiously, this style is the least used by people.
The communication style we tend to use is influenced by a series of psychological and neurological factors, but that doesn’t mean we can’t change it. It takes self-control and power of will, but the gains are worth your efforts.
If you want to become an assertive communicator, you need to first of all value yourself and your needs but also respect the rights of others. An assertive communicator doesn’t point fingers, and instead focuses on what he or she feels. You need to state what you want and express your feelings in an appropriate, respectful manner. At the same time, an assertive communicator needs to learn how to listen – without interrupting, and actually paying attention to what the other person is saying.
Communication also includes body language, and an assertive communicator keeps his body language in check. You need to have a relaxed, open posture, maintain friendly eye contact throughout the conversation and make friendly gestures while speaking calmly and clearly.
More than anything, the key to be an assertive communicator is acknowledging the fact that everyone is equal. Everyone deserves the same respect as you expect from others. This is why you need to be willing to compromise in order for both parties to win something. You will find that this will lead to better relations and more open communications with those around you.