More than Words, When Language isn’t Enough

I am reading a very interesting book, Talking to Strangers, by Malcolm Gladwell. The basic premise is, as humans we short cut a lot –our brains are amazing computers that don’t necessarily have the “clear cache” function I love on my laptop – which sometimes leads to some very interesting choices based on interactions with strangers. (definitely a good read if you’re into that sort of thing.)

This got me to thinking about all the times my husband and I miscommunicate, or when I have these sorts of situations come up with folks I actually know, like and trust. Communication is the foundation of all human interactions, and it plays a crucial role in shaping our personal and professional lives. I want to explore the different facets of communication and how it impacts our relationships and success.

Clearly, my daughter was communicating her displeasure at not winning Chinese Checkers here…but sometimes what we wish to convey isn’t as clear cut as this photo

Effective communication is essential in all walks of life. Whether you are trying to convey an idea, give feedback, or negotiate a deal, communication is the key to success. Clear and concise communication can make the difference between success and failure. When people communicate effectively, they are able to build stronger relationships, avoid misunderstandings, and achieve common goals.

However, communication is not always easy. There are many barriers that can prevent effective communication, such as language barriers, cultural differences, and personal biases. To overcome these barriers, it is essential to develop strong communication skills. This includes being able to listen actively, express your ideas clearly and succinctly, and be open to feedback.

Listen actively is a really hard skill to master – especially if you’re wired a little more…hmm, shall we say proactively?!?! (I may be coming up with nicer-sounding words here because I struggle big time in this area.) This means not formulating a response before hearing out the speaker. It also means trying to really take in what is being said without actually being said. Listening is hard work!

Another aspect of effective communication is understanding the different communication styles. Different people have different ways of communicating, and being able to identify and adapt to these styles can help build stronger relationships. Some people are more direct and to the point, while others prefer a more indirect approach. By understanding these differences, you can tailor your communication style to the needs of the other person.

When you can quickly determine your own personal style and that of your audience, it can definitely help create an atmosphere for a successful discussion.

In today’s digital age, communication has become more complex than ever before. We now have a wide range of communication tools at our disposal, such as email, instant messaging, social media, and video conferencing. While these tools can make communication more convenient, they can also create new challenges. For example, it can be difficult to convey tone and emotion through written communication, which can lead to misunderstandings.

To overcome these challenges, it is important to be mindful of how we use these tools. This includes using appropriate language, being clear and concise, and using the right tone for the situation. It also means being aware of the potential for misinterpretation, and (calmly) taking steps to clarify any misunderstandings that arise.

In conclusion, effective communication is essential for success in all areas of life. By developing strong communication skills, understanding different communication styles, and being mindful of the challenges posed by modern communication tools, we can build stronger relationships, avoid misunderstandings, and achieve common goals.

I hope that you’ll join me in a renewed effort to slow down, listen actively, discover your own style and participating in a more active communication effort as we navigate such a charged world. As yogis, it’s our duty to dive deep into ourselves, find the breath, and calmly stand in the midst of the chaos around us – afterall, why else do we hold rediculous poses like frog if it’s not to strengthen our own resolve? 🙂

This post does have affiliate links and links to the Thrive Yoga and Wellness youtube channel. You should probably subscribe if you haven’t already- we have a bunch of free resources, classes, drills, etc for you to take your practice with you no matter where life takes you!