No matter where you go, you’ll need to be able to communicate– whether it be with a group of people, or a presentation in front of hundreds .  The key to  improving your communication is to remember the reason you communicate in the first place.  When we communicate, we are trying to dig deeper into someone by talking to them.  Tips can be helpful but maintaining that mindset can be a whole lot helpful.

Listen

The number one issue with communication is people generally fail to listen.  A lot of people hear what’s being said without actually understanding what’s being said.  Listening with the intent of understanding is called active listening.  Strive to be an active listener because this makes a conversation much easier and smoother.  When you imagine a conversation as a game of ping-pong; a conversation that flows is similar to two people who hit the ball back and forth to each other with ease. The game flows because the players flow.  When you don’t actively listen it’s as if one player serves the ball to one person and then the other person instead of just hitting the ball, stops it and then re-serves it; hence the awkward conversations.

Don’t think of what to say

Spending the conversation trying to think of what to say distracts you from the conversation.  I was a big offender of this.  I had social anxiety when I was younger, so when speaking to someone after the usual “what’s up” or “how’ve you been?”,  I was at a loss for words so I instantly started thinking of new conversations and topics to talk about; instead of listening and participating in the conversation at hand.  When it was my turn to speak, I would have nothing to talk about, so I would use up all of the topics I had in queue.  Please don’t make the mistake I did.  You’d be surprised at how much just listening makes conversations more enjoyable.

Seek to Understand

The overall goal of communicating is to understand the person you’re talking to.  People give clues about who they truly when they speak.  When they laugh at certain things, when they become more defensive at certain points, when they can’t stop talking about a certain someone; these all give you clues to who they really are. Not only their name and what they do, but their motivations and beliefs.  What drives them?  Why do they do what they do?  This is why relationship experts recommend new couples to spend as much as possible communicating.  When you’re in the honeymoon phase, it’s easy to get caught up in physical characteristics and everything on the surface. Conversation is meant to be the counter to that.

Did I miss any thing?  What has helped you become a better communicator? Feel free to comment below.

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