If you want to know how to communicate, the most important rule is to keep your message clear and positive. That makes it so much more likely that you will be understood and that people will be more likely to listen to you as you won’t be perceived as criticising.
To keep your message simple you should:
– Use short, simple sentences.
– Only make one request or ask one question at a time.
– Be specific with what you say.
– Avoid being over-emotional with negative emotions
Now that you have those basic rules of how to communicate, let us look at some examples of how to use that communication in specific circumstances:
To Give Praise:
It’s nice to know what we do is appreciated, isn’t it? So often we forget to offer praise where it is earned. That’s sad, because if people are praised for doing something good
they are more likely to repeat that behavior.
1. Look directly at the person.
2. Tell him or her exactly what they did that was good.
3. Tell the other person exactly how you felt about the good thing they did.
4. Remember to encourage people by praising even small improvements; waiting for praise for major improvements can be too demoralizing.
5. It is important to praise people immediately; that way they feel appreciated and they also know exactly what it is that they’ve done well.
6. Don’t add a critical ‘but’ when you praise. Just praise someone; there is time to address less desirable behaviours elsewhere.
To Make A Request:
If you want a person to act in a particular way or thing something in particular, you need to couch your request in positive terms. Nagging will get you nowhere; neither will demanding your own way. You should instead state clearly what you want that person to do and tell them how much you appreciate what they are doing and the effort that they are making.
1. Look at the person when you talk to him or her.
2. Tell the person specifically what you want them to do.
3. Tell him or her how it would make you feel if they do as you ask.
4. Keep your tone and posture friendly and not demanding or aggressive.
These suggestions won’t guarantee your requests are met; it may be that your request was unreasonable or that the other person could not comply or was unwilling to do so. But asking in such a way makes it more likely that your will get what you ask for.
To Express Negative Feelings:
I’ve just finished telling you how you need to be positive and here I am bringing up negative feelings but the truth is that we all have negative feelings at times; that is natural
and if they are not expressed constructively they can be a strong destructive force. There are a few guidelines which should help you express negative feelings constructively so that the matters can be addressed and the problem solved.
1. Maintain eye contact when you speak to the other person.
2. Be specific about how the behaviour was unwelcome.
3. Tell the person how it made you feel.
4. Be constructive and simply state how he or she can prevent this problem happening again.
5. Maintain an open, friendly posture which is not aggressive or confrontational.
This should have given you some guidance on how to communicate in certain circumstances but it will also have provided you with some basic guidelines which help in any communication.