Characteristics of an Ineffective Communicator

In the last article we discussed some of the positive characteristics that lead to effective communication, but what about recognizing behaviors in ourselves that lead to just the opposite… bad communication?

Exploring both sides of the coin is beneficial when trying to become a more effective communicator.

Yes, we can focus on incorporating useful suggestions to change our communication style, but it is equally important to become aware of some damaging behaviors we may be using from an ingrained default position without even being aware.

Research shows people who demonstrate some of the following behaviors can be considered by the majority as ineffective in their communication efforts.

They communicate from a bullying standpoint through ridicule, scorn, threats and emotional outbursts.

I view this as the “Yosemite Sam” effect. These people have a low threshold for being able to tolerate anything outside their sphere of perceived control and an inability to manage their emotions.

Emotional outbursts are off-putting to say the least. They make most people feel uncomfortable and put them in an offensive position before they can even get a word in.

As the old saying goes, “if you can manage your emotions all is well, but when your emotions begin to manage you… watch out.”

They come at communication from an ingrained belief that somehow views demeaning others either as a motivational tool or a way to absolve themselves from being accountable for their own self conduct.

This behavior causes people on the receiving end to “check out.”

Most people shut down in situations like this and communication is lost before it ever begins.

They fail to listen.

This is a big one and unfortunately a common challenge for a great deal of people.

Again, I lean on an old saying “we were given two ears, two eyes, and one mouth for a reason.”

Yet, listening to others for some, can pose as a difficult task to achieve. The term “listening” conceptually is pretty broad, but listening to actually hear the other person becomes more specific.

For example, you can listen to someone speak while typing on your computer, but I guarantee the person communicating will not feel “heard.”

Listening involves more than just your ears.

To actively listen a good communicator employs body posture, eyes, facial expressions, and at times, even voice at the end to communicate understanding.

They have a habit of interrupting.

Interrupting is another huge area that fosters poor communication, yet something I see quite a few people do without even being aware they are doing it.

I have actually observed conversations where a person was interrupting repeatedly throughout the conversation, yet when following up with that same person afterwards they were unaware of their interruptions and in some cases actually surprised by my feedback.

This is a prime example of that “default position” I refer to.

As human beings, we develop certain ways of “being” in the world.

We establish behaviors, beliefs and perceptions that become so imbedded in our personality that they are habitual and occur outside our sphere of active awareness… hence activating our “default position.”

Regardless of whether we think we can multi-task effectively, we can’t when it comes to communication.

When we go to a place of composing a response or we are so overwhelmed by our urge to interject our thoughts in the middle of someone else’s dialogue, we are actually no longer listening.

Interrupting serves a double edged negative sword as it not only ceases our ability to listen, but it also disconnects us from the other person by making them feel un-heard, disrespected, devalued, demeaned and the list goes on.

They find fault with what others bring to the conversation more often than not.

Communication is really a fine art.

It is more complex than most of us realize or even stop to consider.

I believe this is the case because it is something we all do daily in one form or another, so as a commonly engaged in behavior, it is at risk to become problematic over time.

Thus enters… finding fault.

Yet another poor communication skill, finding fault regularly shows up in conversations either intentionally or unintentionally.

In order for dialogue to be productive, all present and engaged in the process need to feel respected and valued.

They also need to have trust. If the majority of the time, you are finding fault with what is being presented, you need to go back to the proverbial drawing board and reassess your desired outcomes.

Continually finding fault only serves to douse the flames of creative thought and destroy the potential for nurturing the essential ingredients of a robust dialogue like innovation, strategizing, visioning, or problem solving to name a few.

They are viewed as unapproachable by others.

Let’s face it, people like to connect.

We are social beings and establishing a sense of connection is part of our biological coding.

If you read the work of Daniel Siegel, he points to the importance of connection throughout most of his literature.

Years ago I attended a conference with Dan Siegel. One of the statements he made that I never forgot, he said “relationships are the defining feature that makes us human.”

So, if you have received feedback that you are acting in ways that convey a message to others that you are unapproachable, stop and give it some thought.

If you are perceived as unapproachable, barriers go up and you sabotage communication efforts before they even find a starting point.

It really is all up to you, make the choice to live your life by design, not default!

Take charge of your destiny and re-design a stellar Blueprint for Success!

Are You A People-Pleaser?

Risking Conflict By Speaking Your Truth

As a therapist and transformational life coach specializing in relationships and communication, and as a recovering people-pleaser and codependent myself, I know first-hand how difficult it can be to risk conflict in order to have your true thoughts, feelings, preferences, and needs heard and seen by others.

However, it ultimately serves no-one when a relationship is dependent on one person hiding their true self in order to please another.

Learn how people-pleasing may actually be harming you and your relationships and read my ten tips on how to start caring for yourself by being honest and assertive, beginning today.

What’s A People-Pleaser?

People-pleasers (also referred to at times as ‘codependents’) seek validation from others that they are acceptable and worthy of being liked or loved, and can be so ‘other’ focused that they often have no idea what they really feel, think, want, or need.

People-pleasers are typically individuals who learned early on in life that their true self expressions were not acceptable, and that their self-worth must be extracted from those around them in a never-ending quest to feel okay, accepted, liked, and loved.

Are You A People-Pleaser?

If you’re a people-pleaser, you likely avoid conflict as much as possible, and will deny your own truth in an attempt to make those you are dependent on and/or care about comfortable.

You’ll do anything you can to ‘keep the peace’, even if that means betraying and abandoning yourself by repressing your own preferences and needs.

In fact, you may be so focused on tending to the wants and needs of those around you that you have lost touch with who you really are at the most basic, fundamental level, to the point where you might be feeling depleted, angry, and exhausted much of the time without ever realizing it is because of your chronic people-pleasing ways.

Why People-Pleasing Serves No One In The End

  • Get ready for a good hard dose of reality: Subservient, ingratiating behavior serves no one, ever, no matter how much you’d like to believe it does.
  • By surrendering control to others and abandoning yourself, you are allowing yourself to live a lie – And lies serve no one in the end.
  • And remember, you also may be attempting to control others via your people-pleasing ways by making them dependent on you.
  • A healthy adult relationship requires that the two people involved create a relational environment that is reciprocal, truthful, respectful, and interdependent.
  • Hiding our true selves and pretending we are something other than what and who we actually are is ultimately dishonest and far more damaging to a relationship than voicing a truth that might result in heated discussion or out-and-out conflict.

 Tips To Help You Start Taking Care Of Yourself And Stop People-Pleasing Others:

  • Although it takes courage to practice new behaviors, people-pleasers who learn to live authentically find that the freedom they experience in being themselves makes risking conflict worth it.

Recognize:

  • That you may have learned early in life that your self-worth depends on what others think of you (children who grew up in abusive environments are especially likely to believe this).

Acknowledge:

  • That your self-worth does not belong in the hands of others – Nobody should have that much power over what you think and how you feel about yourself.

Decide:

  • That you will no longer play the People-Pleasing Game; it will take time, dedication, and commitment, but it is possible to change.

Check in:

  • With yourself during interactions with others, especially when communicating with those that you tend to people-please the most.
  • Focus on what feels true and right for you during these conversations, even if you are not yet ready to risk conflict by expressing a differing view, feeling, or need.
  • Write your thoughts and feelings down in a journal after such difficult or uncomfortable interactions.
  • Get to know yourself and become curious about what you really feel and think.

Determining your values, identifying your priorities, and defining your beliefs:

  • Are three of the most effective ways to build a strong foundation from which to speak your truth when communicating with others.
  • Take time to be with yourself and even write down your priorities in life and what is most important to you.
  • This will help you to develop your ability to agree or disagree and say “no” or “yes” (and mean it), no matter what the situation is.

“My decision is final”.

  • Once you determine your values and better understand what is best and most right for you, plan on saying “My decision is final” if you anticipate that rejecting or denying a request will not be well received.
  • Role-play with your significant other or a trusted friend, if needed, so you can get used to saying this one simple phrase.
  • These four words will go a long way to ensure that any doors that might allow you to be manipulated by others, especially people who were able to take advantage of you in the past, are firmly closed and will save you much grief down the road.

Use empathic reflection when asserting yourself with others, including recognized ‘authority figures’.

  • Here’s an example from my own life: I recently saw a doctor for a minor physical complaint. His recommended intervention was unacceptable to me for various reasons. My response was to say, “I understand why you might be recommending that, and if I were in your shoes I imagine I would too.
  • But that route is not one I wish to go down. My decision is final.” After saying this and dialoguing a bit more, we went on to find a remedy that we both felt comfortable with, and the treatment was ultimately successful.

Choose your battles:

  • If you sense or suspect that your honest expressions are going to result in a conflict that you just don’t feel ready or equipped to deal with, it’s okay to acknowledge the truth to yourself and choose not to express it.
  • Some things matter more than others.
  • Talk to a trusted friend, journal your thoughts and feelings, or consider seeing a licensed Psychotherapist, Counselor, or Transformational Life Coach to help you sort out what really matters most to you and what doesn’t.
  • Remember, some people will not be able to hear or compassionately receive, much less respect, your truth if they find it personally or professionally inconvenient or threatening.
  • Remember, not everyone is looking for honest, reciprocal relationships; such people may even attempt to judge, shame, or blame you for speaking your truth – Or even try to convince you that your truth is a lie.

Don’t explain yourself in an attempt to justify your position:

  • This is a real trap that people-pleasing types fall into repeatedly. You’re entitled to have your own thoughts, feelings, experiences, needs, and preferences, just like everybody else.
  • The fact that some people in your life don’t agree with you or respect your truth doesn’t make them right.
  • Trust yourself and your perceptions.
  • Sometimes our “gut feelings’ can tell us far more about a person or a situation than anything that is being overtly presented to us.

Remember the power of choice:

  • Adults who learned to people-please in childhood are often genuinely unaware that they have the ability to choose how they will conduct themselves in a relationship.

It’s Never Too Late To Cultivate Authentic Relationships And Start Caring For Yourself

  • Living in a truthful, emotionally honest manner requires courage, patience, practice, and commitment.Tired Of Being A Doormat? Use These Ten Tips To Help You Stop Being A People-PleaserThere are many books written on people-pleasing and codependency designed to help break the people-pleasing habit;

Melody Beattie’s Codependent No More: How To Stop Controlling Others And Start Caring For Yourself is the one I most often recommend to clients, along with.

Susan Newman’s The Book of No: 250 Ways To Say It – And Mean It And Stop People-Pleasing Forever.

A free support group that focuses on developing healthy relationships and communication can be very helpful as well.

Once you feel ready, consider choosing one person in your life that you can practice being completely honest with; ideally, someone you trust and feel safe with but are not always completely authentic with.

Then say exactly what’s on your mind and see what happens.

Think of your values, take deep breaths, and stand your ground.

If you’re having trouble identifying your values, a Transformational Life Coach or Psychotherapist can help you determine who and what most matters to you and support you in ending your people-pleasing ways.

A word of caution:

If you believe that you are genuinely not safe in a relationship and that speaking your truth could result in a threat to your personal safety, I urge you to contact The National Domestic Violence Hotline to receive support, information, and guidance.

Learning To Be Comfortable with Conflict?

 

You are not alone in wanting to avoid conflict. Most of us tend to avoid it. However, the potential for growth and self-discovery lies in conflict. That conflict is a chance to get to know the previously undiscovered sides of yourself. It may help your fear and discomfort about conflict change to excitement about personal growth.

When we work on conflict in groups, a useful attitude is that a group needs conflict in order to understand itself. Conflict may be the field’s way of getting to know and appreciate its parts and of realizing its full self.

–From The Leader as Martial Artist, by Arnold Mindell

As Spotify’s Global VP of Design Rochelle King says in her online talk — “Your Biggest Rival is Your Best Asset” — one of the most effective tools to push forward the creative process is conflict.

Rochelle understood that in order to do her best job as a manager/mover of people and cutting edge technology, she had to learn to be comfortable with conflict.

To appreciate the opportunity to see more than your slice of reality. Your biggest rival has good ideas.

Why not bat things about and see if you can come up with a product or solution that neither of you would have found on your own?

With learning rather than winning as a goal, you will create great products, mend broken relationships, and find solutions more quickly.

Your Rival Is an Asset: Engage Your

You have to catch yourself before you do these things:

  • wanting to advocate
  • convinced you have the best solution
  • talking more than listening
  • persuading, cajoling, manipulating
  • debating only to win
  • demeaning others ideas

If you can catch yourself, you’ll stop for the time it takes to breathe and create a chi moment.

So in that moment you can:

  • listen
  • ask open ended questions
  • learn about what you don’t know
  • ask more questions
  • seek first to understand
  • acknowledge what you hear
  • make their argument for them
  • look for solutions

These are actions that take awareness and practice.

And in time, you will change, you’ll be a different person.

You won’t even notice it happening.

You’ll just begin to have a more calm, centered, creative, and peaceful life.

And things, oddly, will go your way without even trying.

Our greatest learnings often come when we are unaware that we are leaning something. We can study a technique or focus upon a project for days, and the truth or the essence of it just does not seem to click. Then something happens. The fog clears and we notice that we have moved to a new level of truth without ever knowing how we got there. It was not our straining or trying that brought us to this new level. It was our willingness to be aware of what had already taken place that opened new doors.

–From Meditations for Women Who Do Too Much, by Anne Wilson Schaef

WARNING! Social Security to Tap into Trust Fund for First Time In 36 Years!

While the projection for Social Security’s stayed the same as last year, for the first time since 1982, Social Security must dip into the trust fund to pay for the program this year.

Social Security trustees said that reserves for the fund that pays disability benefits would be exhausted in 2032.

Social Security’s trustees said the program’s two trust funds would be depleted in 2034.

It should be stressed that the reports don’t indicate that benefits disappear in those years.

After 2034, Social Security’s trustees said tax income would be sufficient to pay only about three-quarters of retirees’ benefits.

Of Course, congress could at any time choose to pay for the benefits through the general fund.

Given our current Congresses lack of action, I don’t see that happening.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement that “lackluster economic growth in previous years,” as well as an aging population, has contributed to shortages for both Social Security and Medicare.

He said the Trump administration’s economic agenda, including tax cuts and trade deals, would generate growth and help to secure the programs.

Yea and I believe in unicorns.

AARP said in a statement that the report showed “challenges ahead for the long term,” and singled out health care for action during the election year.

How You Can Stop Blushing When You’re Under Pressure

A blush forms a pink tinge in the face as a result of embarrassment or shame. It is only typical to humans. Charles Darwin describes it as “the most peculiar and most human of all expressions”.

Why does it happen?

The reasons for blushing differs from person to person. Some people may blush when they’re being praised, it happens to some when they are caught in a wrong act, others when they’re being made the center of attention and some even blush when they’re threatened.

It is the body’s natural way of communicating your emotion.

For most people this emotion is shame or embarrassment.

For some it happens mostly when am being praised, I really can’t help that one.

Does it change how someone views you?

Not necessarily.

It doesn’t make people think of you as shy or less confident.

There are even certain instances when people who blush are considered nicer and more reliable than those who don’t.

Lets take for instance a situation where you find your seat mate spying on your booklet during a test.

What attitude of his would make you more sympathetic?

Surely a little tinge on his face which would show shame on his part for what he was caught doing.

For a very dark skinned person, it could be more obviousness which is in contrast to a light skinned person where you could actually see the pink or red tinge.

Effective Methods on How You Can Stop Blushing When You're Under Pressure

How can I stop blushing?

One way to accomplish this is by intentionally trying to blush, yup, I said it. Mike McClement, Founder Think Confidence and writer at selfgrowth says: “Vicious circles, like the blushing-embarrassment one, tend to take on a perpetual nature.

The only way to stop blushing is to create a short-circuit.

By drawing brief but intentional focus to it, you can stop blushing in its tracks.”

When you ‘intentionally’ blush, your emotional response will not be one of utter embarrassment and devastation but one of acceptance.

Recognize that blushing is a normal human response and there is no point fighting it.

Blushing is a subconscious reaction and you are not directly responsible for it.

Adapt your mind to accept the fact that blushing is completely natural and you cannot help but blush in certain situations because fearing blushing will only cause the actual blushing to become worse.

You will notice that once you have accepted that blushing is natural, you can start to retrain your body to stop blushing.

On a physiological level, blushing is nothing more than too much blood flow to your face.

By learning how to redirect the blood flow elsewhere you can physically stop blushing and reduce the berry-red look of a blush.

By harnessing the power of your imagination, and a little practice, you can, for example, focus on your hands heating up and thereby detract blood flow from your face, and stop blushing.

Along with focusing on making changes to the physiology of blushing, you can harness your imaginative mind to retrain your body about how it reacts in known ‘blush-likely’ scenarios.

Visualize yourself at upcoming events where you are cool and calm instead of crimson and flushed.

You are actually re-programming your brain, and sending your subconscious the message not to blush in the actual event.

So in summary, to help you stop blushing…

— Make conscious effort to blush.

–Create a short circuit and stop blushing in its tracks.

— Accept it is your body’s natural response. It’s your subconscious mind working. You are not responsible, and in fact blushing can be a positive thing.

— Direct the blood flow elsewhere.

— Visualize yourself staying calm and cool in common blushing scenarios.

Make Him Think You’re The One

What does it take to become a man’s one and only girl?

What should you do to make sure he only has eyes for you?

It’s completely natural to feel a little insecure about your man. After all there are many younger, beautiful and sexier women out there.

However, science and proven research hold the secrets.

There are sure fire ways to turn even the most notorious players into one woman men.

Read on to discover how to make him think of you as his one and only

3 Ways To Make Him Think You're The One

Strategy:
Know and meet his deepest needs!
Your man is special and unique – so what is good for other men won’t necessarily be good for him.

Being his woman, you have a golden opportunity to find out what his deepest most hidden needs are.

You’ll never discover these needs until you connect with his heart in a deep, profound way like no other woman can.

You will discover if he desires praise and affirmations, or if he wants to be sheltered or if he wants a woman to protect for example.

These concepts may sound ludicrous but they are examples of real male needs.

It is critical that you spend time getting to know him, talking, solving problems and doing activities that encourage him to reveal his hidden side and earn his trust.

Strategy
Be more than just his lover!
It is one thing to give him life giving sex and a different thing all together to give him loving outside of the bedroom.

Get creative and think of ways to make his life easier and more enjoyable without being a doormat. If he adores a massage, give him a massage at night – then ask him to reciprocate.

Take up new hobbies or sports together so that he will spend time and have fun with you and that is critical for a guy.

Strategy
Get along with his friends and family!
It is a big deal for a guy that you get along with his friends and family.

actually plays a major role in his decision to settle down and start a family with a woman.

So if you don’t get along with his friends and family and in the future he meets a great woman who does – it is a no brainer who he will choose!

Make it your priority to get off on the right foot with his friends and family from the outset.

Medicare is Dying! What Am I supposed To Do Now?

Medicare’s finances were downgraded in a new report from the program’s trustees.

Medicare’s hospital insurance fund will be depleted in 2026, said the trustees who oversee the benefit program in an annual report.

That is three years earlier than projected last year.

Medicare beneficiaries wouldn’t face an immediate cut after the trust fund is depleted in 2026.

The trustees said the share of benefits that can be paid from revenues will decline to 78% in 2039.

That share rises again to 85% in 2092.

The hospital fund is financed mainly through payroll taxes.

The trustees said Medicare’s changed outlook is due to adverse changes in the program’s income and costs.

Hospital insurance fund income is projected to be lower than last year’s estimates

thanks to “lower payroll taxes attributable to lowered wages in 2017 and lower levels of projected GDP,” the trustees said.

And hospital insurance fund expenditures are expected to be higher than last year’s estimates, the trustees said.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement that “lackluster economic growth in previous years,” as well as an aging population, has contributed to shortages for both Social Security and Medicare.

He said the Trump administration’s economic agenda, including tax cuts and trade deals, would generate growth and help to secure the programs.

Yea and I believe in unicorns.

AARP said in a statement that the report showed “challenges ahead for the long term,” and singled out health care for action during the election year.

Stonewalling – A Relationship Destroying Behavior

There are four behaviors so deadly to a relationship, whether romantic, family and friends, or business, that they have been called ‘The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse’ by relationship expert, John Gottman, Ph.D.. He names them:

  • Criticism
  • Contempt
  • Defensiveness
  • Stonewalling

This time we look at Stonewalling
Relationships are about you and something (like money) or someone else (family, friend, lover).

When someone actively disengages from a conversation or the relationship, Gottman calls it stonewalling.

It is very hard on a relationship.

‘Active’ and ‘disengagement’ are the key words.

“I need to talk to you.”

[Silence]

“Can we talk please?”

[silence]

“If you don’t talk to me I’m going to burn that &*%$#@ paper!”

[ducking behind the newspaper?-?more silence]

[Sounds of a flame thrower come from the kitchen.]

Stonewalling shows up as silent treatments, a refusal to engage, and withdrawal and in general just ignoring the other.

When stonewalling is present there are usually several of the other horsemen also galloping about and wreaking havoc.

Stonewalling always escalates the conflict.

It invites conflict, contempt, and defensiveness in an attempt to break the silence.

Remember that our biggest need in a relationship is to be heard and know that our feelings matter.

The ‘other’ will get louder and more insistent in his or her demands for our attention until eventually just giving up and checking out emotionally. Call the coroner.

I’ve heard many people say “We’ve been emotionally divorced for years.” Stonewalling is where it starts.

Relationship Destroying Behaviors: Stonewalling (5 Tips for Breaking Through)

So what to do:
Realize your relationship is in a state of alarm and needs immediate attention.

1. If you are the one who is stonewalling explore the fears behind why you are not engaging.

  • Is there a part of your identity that is at risk?
  • Do you feel it just makes matters worse? Are you overwhelmed by emotion and anxiety and just can’t handle it?

2. It may be helpful to explain why you are withholding.

  • What do you need to from the other in order to be able to speak freely?
  • Do you need to know that what you share will be held in confidence?
  • Do you need to speak uninterrupted for a length of time?
  • Do you need to set aside a time and/or place to have a difficult conversation?

3. Is there a real threat of danger?

  • Do you need a neutral place to meet, or a third party present?
  • Do you need to have an agreement that there will be no screaming or bullying?
  • What do you need to create a place where communication can happen?

4. If your partner is stonewalling take a look at what you are doing that would cause the other to feel unsafe in expressing him/herself.

  • Have you been judgmental?
  • Parental?
  • Are you being critical or contemptuous?
  • Is s/he fearful that you will dismiss his/her ideas?
  • Do you have to be right? Do you yell and bully?

5. Focus on how YOU want to be and how you want things to be between you.

  • Show up in the way you want regardless of what the other does.
  • If you can show up as your highest and best self your friend/partner will have a better shot at doing that also.
  • Relationship coaching can be a powerful witness and change agent for your relationship.

Don’t wait until your relationship is taking its last breath before you seek help!

 

Read Between the Lines

‘Reading between the lines’ was another saying that my grandmother used to use all the time. It was something she taught me to do, as best she could, which in my life has been instrumental in decisions I have made.

I am not sure if my assumptions have always been correct though.

I tend to read body language and expressions along with the pauses and unspoken words to get a bigger picture so I can judge the circumstances better.

As communication is so very different these days as we do not communicate face-to-face as much as previously, it is much harder to really understand what is happening or being communicated.

As humans, doing the best we can do, telling a half story or not being totally honest with someone, so as not to hurt their feelings, is sometimes better, if you know or perceive that the truth will be detrimental.

Being non-committal and using words like ‘interesting’ conveys its own story without having to say too much.

One of the most important things in communication is listening for and hearing what isn’t being said.

The art of reading between the lines is a life-long quest.

We are often quick to judge instead of really hearing what the other person is truly saying.

Are they really hurt or in pain, is their heart broken or are they lonely or crying out for help?

Being a woman I am very aware that often we tend not to really say what we want to say as we would rather not get into a confrontation.

In fact we really want the other person to ‘read us’ and know when there is something wrong that needs to be said.

For many men saying things as they are appears to be easier as they tend to just say it as it is.

Men tend not to get into the emotions, as many women generally do, and this then causes other challenges.

It is a great advantage to be able to say something without being misconstrued, without hurting the other person.

As we are all very different personalities this often does not happen and we really do not hear what is really being said.

“It can be the greatest gift being able to just say what needs to be said and understood, whilst being wise enough to know when to say a comment without damage to the person or the relationship.”

Learning to read between the lines was in earlier years, ex war time, used for transmitting coded messages.

We still use this form of communication, with our loved ones and children or in our work.

If you really read between the lines you will ‘hear’ they are conceding to something that they really do not want to do, see or feel.

I am sure my grandmother learned this skill as she lived through both World War I and II and spent many hours writing to soldiers who needed comfort.

I have been learning over the years not to believe everything that I read or hear literally.

I endeavor to ‘read between the lines’ as much as I can.

When someone says something in anger or hurt and then says that they didn’t mean it, for me there is always some truth behind what was said.

Denying it is just covering up, knowing as the receiver that this is their real thought.

So, by perceiving or detecting a hidden meaning in someone’s writings and words, you often can get more information than the message really says.

For example, when someone says everything is ‘fine’, reading between the lines often could mean that something was wrong, if the expression, and body language shows differently.

It is sometimes hard to express our real feelings or desires as we do not wish to be seen as weak.

This not only happens in our personal lives but also in our professional lives.

We wish to be perceived as strong and in control of our world.

Only someone who really knows and understands someone else, can they detect the real truth.

As doing business today is far more relaxed and open, it is easier to depict what is happening than ever before.

Reading Between the Lines

Whether we are face-to-face with someone, speaking to them on the phone or mobile texting the way we ‘read between the lines’ will be determined by the process used.

When we are face-to-face we have body language and gestures to guide us, when it comes to speaking on the phone we only have tone of voice is the main key and finally, when we take the latest form of communication, via texting, this makes ‘reading between the lines’ very difficult.

I feel that more relationship breakdowns can happen this way as the interpretation is totally left to the skill of the writer and the receiver, which more than likely is different!

Face-to-face communication gives us the opportunity to read what is happening and correct if we are misinterpreted.

The voice can do this far more effectively than texting, as the receiver is out on a limb and can be misconstrued totally as a result of their interpretation of the comment.

Social media also has its drawbacks which is quite obvious by the way messages are interpreted and commented on.

Often the comment is not related at all to what was intended by the original writer of the post.

So, learn to read between the lines of what is said or written.

This is a skill that will support you in your relationships and communication generally in the future.

Communication Tip

It’s time for a communication tip!

Have you ever been at a presentation or talking with someone and you have a difficult time understanding what they are saying?

What about you?

Do you speak clearly enough so that people understand YOU?

The tip for today will help you Speak so that You Can Be Understood.

Enunciate your words.
The definition of Enunciate is to pronounce words or parts of words clearly.

In addition to pronouncing words clearly, you want to be certain you are pronouncing words correctly.

I know that my biggest enunciation problem is putting the “endings on words”.

When speaking, I don’t clearly pronounce the ending letters in words. In fact, leaving off the endings in works is very common.

Several examples of what I’m referring to include:
Going – dropping the “g” would be pronounced as “go-in”
Talking – dropping the “g” would be pronounced as “talk-in”
Jogging – dropping the “g” would be pronounced as “jog-gin”

To help with my enunciation, I have discovered that I can improve my diction!

1 Minute Communication Tip

When I speak to a large group, I purposefully do 3 things:

  • Talk slowly so that I have the time to pronounce the word. When I talk quickly, I think quicker than I talk. That means that I’m not completing my words!
  • Open my mouth more so that I am enunciating the word. This feels very awkward, but it works. When I need to be heard clearly, I use my mouth more when I talk. He He!
  • Make a big effort to intentionally put endings on my words. This is another skill that feels very awkward. But, if I intentionally put emphasis on the last letter of the word, then I am better understood.

When I do these things, I find that people can understand me better.

And, I’m able to communicate better with the other person.

What are some other common enunciation issues?

  • Mumbling – talking indistinctly and quietly, making it difficult for others to hear.
  • Slurring words together – combining words, reducing or omitting sounds in the hurried or careless talk.

Why is enunciation important?

If I’m not understood, then there is a breakdown in communication, and I don’t want that.

I want to be able to communicate well.

When you are communicating, make certain that you are enunciating your words.

It might be uncomfortable, but it’s a great way to be understood and be heard.