The key to good communication is crucial when it comes to your spouse, your children, co-workers, boss, mother-in-laws, siblings, neighbors, and the list goes on and on. But communicating can be difficult sometimes. . .
Have you ever been stuck in one of those very common yet frustrating conversations with your spouse where you just aren’t on the same page?
Now what about that time with your 14 year old. No matter what you did or said, you couldn’t get him to open up to you about how school is going. He just won’t talk. Even about the little stuff. He gives you grunts and “uh-huh” or the ever-so-frustrating “nah”.
Well that’s all great and dandy, but what about your co-worker who is ever increasingly difficult to work with? She is always late, always complains and always has an excuse to get out of the latest project. I’ve been there, done that.
Okay, now all that said and done. Have no fear. Even though men and women seem to be hardwired to communicate differently, and teens are more shut down than Fort Knox, you can still have confidence when communicating! Let me teach you the key to communicating, with anybody. About anything.
Are you ready?
Sitting at the edge of your seat yet?
Scrolling. . . waiting for the goodness to come….. ?
Okay, sorry I have too much fun. 😀 Lets get serious.
The key to good communication is empathy.The key to good communication is #empathy! You can talk to anybody about anything if you have… Click To Tweet
Well what does that mean?
Empathy is trying to understand what other people have gone through.
It’s the age-old classic saying of “walk a mile in their shoes” mentality. Why is that so important?
Let me tell you a story really quick.
My hubby and I were driving past one of those schools that are filled with kids who get kicked out of regular high school for either behavior problems or academic problems. As we drove past I said “oh there goes the school with all the troubled kids”. And my hubby very quickly rebutted, “there goes the school with all the abused kids.”
I knew he didn’t mean that literally, rather just opening my eyes to help me see the trauma they have traveled through and maybe some more understanding for what they have been through.
He does that quite frequently where he helps me see the ‘story behind the behavior’. That is what I want you to strive for.
Search for the story behind the emotion, the behavior, the comments, or the lack of story. When you see life through the eyes of the other person, you have more patience, love and understanding. Which makes all the difference in effective communication.
How do you grow and nurture your empathy?
Let’s face it having empathy when you are really frustrated or when you’ve been offended is incredibly hard to have. But it’s like a muscle. If you continue to work it out it will grow stronger, more reliable, it will have more endurance.
Practice, simply practice. It’s not a natural thing for most people to put aside their feelings or emotions and truly stop to think about what the other person is going through. But it is something you can actively work on and get better at.
This works even if you know the person super well. I can hear you saying in your mind, but I already know where they have been. I already know what shoes they’ve walked in. I challenge you to think otherwise.
If you want to know more about having amazing communication skills make sure you check out this free parenting class.
Okay now that I’ve said my peace I want to hear your thoughts.
How has empathy benefitted your communication?