I’m a big believer in fitness. I love working out and staying in shape because it helps me perform better in all aspects of my life. When I feel strong, I’m more confident. When I feel disciplined and energized, I know I can accomplish anything. Effective communication skills are a lot like that.
When your communication skills are in shape, all aspects of your life can benefit.
After all, communication is the most important part of ALL relationships: business, romantic, family and societal. When your communication is strong, your entire life can flourish!
With this in mind, here are 7 effective communication skills that will improve your life:
1. Public Speaking
Fun fact: More people are afraid to speak in front of a group than they are afraid to kick the proverbial bucket. That’s right, people would rather (and literally) die than give a presentation.
Think of how you could improve your life if you could just get over this fear. If you can conquer the fear of public speaking, you’re pretty much unstoppable! Jump out of a plane? Easy-peasy. Text your crush? No problem. Ask for that raise you totally deserve? You got this!
Nothing’s sadder than letting fear hold you back in life. So, take a stab at public speaking and become unstoppable.
Communication without listening is like a gin & tonic without the gin. Sure, you can drink it, but it won’t do much.
Effective communication skills equal speaking & listening. If you want to build connection and trust, persuade, share your passion, learn, and show others they matter, become a better listener. It can also help to avoid arguments as when you are truly listening to others you’ll have a better understanding of their wants and needs. Then, you can try to meet somewhere in the middle.
Decide to become a better listener and watch how your life changes!
3. Body Language
Forget flying or becoming invisible, the ultimate super power is the ability to read body language. In a way, reading body language is like having X-ray vision. Want to know what someone is really thinking or feeling? Pay attention to their non-verbal cues.
- He’s only made eye contact twice in the past 10 minutes: Your dive instructor isn’t telling you the truth.
- She’s stretching a lot: Your crush isn’t that into you.
- Aaaaand there’s the arm cross - You’re probably not getting that raise.
Bonus: Once you learn to read other people’s body language, you will become aware of your own and know exactly what signals you are sending to others.
4. Eye Contact
I once had a neighbor whose drapes and blinds were closed every single day, all day long for years. It was creepy. And weird. It was creepy and weird because you wondered what he was doing in there. What was he hiding? Were there bodies???
The point is, a lack of eye contact can make you come across as, well, creepy and weird. People will naturally feel you are up to something or, at the very least, not being honest and authentic. Two of the most effective communication skills are honesty and authenticity.
So, the moral of this story is to practice your eye contact! If you’re being honest and authentic you should have no trouble meeting someone’s gaze.
5. Clear Communication
You should blue assertive contrasts tallest stardust dismissive and leper cranium take oceans on with soap at the or an also forget summation tonsillitis.
Got it? No, how could you possibly, I wasn’t being very clear. What I meant to say was:
You should always think before you speak (and write) so that you can be sure your message conveys exactly what you want it to.
We can all benefit from being clearer. Your audience will understand what you are selling. Your employees will understand what you expect of them. Your significant other won’t have to read your mind (Many of you will thank me later for this last one).
6. Getting (and Sticking) to the Point
As per the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the definition of ‘Blather’ is:
blathered; blathering \ˈbla-t͟h(ə-)riŋ\
intransitive verb: to talk foolishly at length —often used with on
No one likes a blatherer. It’s a good way to make an audience, an uncle, your partner or kids completely tune out what you have to say.
If you want people to listen to you, don’t talk foolishly at length. Instead, know what you want to say, get to the point and stay there.
One way of getting to the point is understanding what exact point or points you won’t to transmit BEFORE you speak.
7. Offering Constructive Criticism
Destructive criticism: You’re a horrible cook.
Constructive criticism: You’ve definitely learned some skills and I encourage you to keep taking those cooking lessons.
Destructive criticism: I hate the presentation that you just did
Constructive criticism: I like the structure of the presentation you did, but I would love it there were more examples listed to really bring it to life.
Destructive criticism: You are not a great speaker.
Constructive criticism: You have a lot of passion when you speak. Maybe you can work on having a more clear structure.
See the difference? Don’t just point out a problem – offer a solution and encouragement.
You only live once, so why not do whatever it takes to make your life as great as possible? If you practice these 7 effective communication skills, I promise you, every aspect of your life will benefit!
Let’s connect! I’d love to share even more ways you can become an effective communicator.