Friday, April 24, 2009

Communication Glitches

If you are communicating effectively, both you and the other party will feel heard and respected.
If you are not communicating effectively, both may argue, feel hurt, offended, angry or dismissed.
If you not experiencing respect and acceptance, it is your responsibility to communicate a better way.
If you are not trusting, respecting and accepting of the outcome, do not blame anyone.

Blame interferes with undoing what doesn’t work and finding a better way.
Guilt causes either withdrawal or attack and blame.
Anger sets up both parties to feel threatened and defensive.
Hurt creates guilt for the other and perpetuates ineffective communication or future attack.

Most people come from family systems with dysfunctional communication patterns.
Most people don’t know how to communicate effectively but expect the other to make it work.
Most people give up before they start by expecting the unsatisfactory result they get.
Most people are so busy explaining, justifying and defending their position, they do not listen.

The most conscious and willing person is responsible for the outcome.
When desiring to communicate effectively, there are some simple guidelines.
· Choose a time that is acceptable and optimum for both parties.
· Private, no interruptions, set beginning and ending time.
· State desired goal for the interaction.
“I would like to have 30 minutes this evening to discuss how we handle our finances.
What time is best for you?”
(Your tone of voice, eye contact and request will signal whether the conversation will be adversarial or helpful.)

Come to the meeting with a willingness to be open, positive, respectful of both parties and helpful.
State how you are feeling, what you really want, and what you are willing to do to achieve that outcome.
If your communication is only about the small stuff (doing chores, homework, or some conflict), you may be setting the meeting up to be criticizing one or the other.
If your request is about the quality of your relationship, (finding a way to appreciate one other, and work together for a win/win solution), you will experience more cooperation than resistance.
I am feeling disconnected and want us to work together harmoniously, so I am willing to talk together.
When would be the best time for you?

If you have not built a respectful and appreciative relationship, even initiating a conversation may bring up fear and defensiveness. Most relationships have a history or pattern of communication which impacts the quality of your interaction. It is important to build an emotional bank account of trust aqnd respect in order to experience authentic sharing and a desire to find a mutually beneficial outcome.
If the relationship is already on shaky ground with threats, criticism and negativity, any conversation may lead to pain for both parties.
To begin to build relationship, one must start by forgiving (erasing the past history from your mind).
Then begin to build the relationship with a display of positive interaction, appreciation and respect.
When you feel that there is more positive possibilities than negative history, invite a conversation with at least two times as much appreciation as negative comments.

Make sure that the other person is fully heard when they are speaking.
Write down what they say to demonstrate that you are listening and that you care.
Teach by example by being patient, calm, listening honestly, dropping your own opinions and opening to understand the other before being understood.
It is a process that requires forgiveness and consistent positive attention.
Thanks for beginning to transform what doesn’t work.
Betty Lue