Effective Communication: What Is It & Skills To Improve On

Effective communication and communication skills are essential skills in our world. Like any skill, to communicate effectively, you need to practice, grow and continue to learn more as you move along in life.

What Is Effective Communication?

Communication is described as an “exchanging of information” through speaking, writing, and anything that can carry information.

For something to be “effective,” it must be “producing the intended or expected result.”

Combining both with effective communication means exchanging information to achieve the result that both parties want, whether with a team member at work or at a family reunion.

Effective communication is a skill that anyone can learn at any time. Children learn at a young age that if they ask for something a certain way, it is a guarantee it will happen.

Tips To Learn Effective Communication Skills

Be An Engaged Listener

Improving your listening skills is to practice “active listening.” This is where you make a conscious and responsive effort to hear the words another person says and the entire message being conveyed. To do this, you must be very attentive to the other person.

Active listening ensures you are present and mildly interested in what the person says. It is a lot easier with people you care about, but it can also be possible with people you don’t personally know. It would be best if you looked at every conversation as a way to improve communication skills.

Look At Non-verbal Communication

Many things go on outside of just the words being shared.

Everything outside of the spoken words is called nonverbal communication or nonverbal cues.

Body language, facial expressions, body movement, and eye contact are all important in learning effective communication skills.

What does their body language look like? Are they stand-offish, or do they lean towards you?

Do they like maintaining eye contact, or do they look elsewhere?

One of the ways to improve good communication skills and maintain better communication habits is to look at body language and understand nonverbal signals.

Am I Communicating Effectively?

It can be hard with any interpersonal skill to know if you are doing well without someone telling you straight to your face. Sometimes that is an option if you are comfortable asking someone. It helps to look at both the positive and negative reactions when talking to people.

Some Barriers To Effective Communication

1. Not Paying Attention

This can include many things, playing on your phone, looking away as the other person talks, and not listening to the feelings or thoughts of the person. Getting distracted and daydreaming can mess with any communication skills you are working on.

2. Giving unwanted advice

We all hate when people tell us what to do.

It can turn a normal conversation into a negative interaction. No one likes when someone butts into your business, telling you what they think you should do. So don’t think you can do the same and not get a negative reaction back.

3. Judgment Of Others

Sometimes people just want someone to vent to before they go on and change their life. They might just want validation for their own emotions before moving on. Being judgmental of someone’s personal life before they can defend themselves is not very fair and is poor communication on your part.

My Final Thoughts

Communication skills are important to everyday life, and effective communication skills can make your life better, healthier, and happier.

I hope you will continue learning and growing into a better version of yourself every day.

Remember to love yourself and others around you.

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