Communication skills are the key to success in many areas of life, whether at work or in socially.
It is true that some people seem better at communicating than others. Why is this? Why are there people that you always look forward to communicating with, and others that you avoid at all costs?
The thing is; if you are good at communicating you can go a long way in life. There’s nothing worse than being stuck in a rut because you can’t get a conversation going. Successful communication opens doors and makes things happen. Who wouldn’t want that?
Simply by following a few easy to remember rules you’ll start to improve your communication skills.
Here are some ideas to get you going:
- Stop talking and listen – we all know people who never stop talking. Don’t be one of them! Really let yourself listen to the person you are with and you’ll find they give you lots of conversation cues to pick up on.
- Empathise – seems basic doesn’t it? Well it is basic to all good communication. People feel a lot happier when they have been ‘heard and understood’. Pick up on the emotions being communicated, not just the information.
- Eye contact – making good eye contact at the start of a communication lets your partner know you are ready to engage and ready to listen. Failed communication often occurs when it is half hearted.
- Mirror – listen with your whole body, not just your ears. Gently mirror your partner’s body language and shape. Don’t mimic, but allow your gesture, tone and shape to correspond with theirs. This will get things flowing.
- Smile – simple, simple. A sincere smile is a warm opening gambit guaranteed to get anyone on your side, even if the conversation ahead is going to be tricky.
These are some basic tips for successful communication, but it’s easy to forget them in the heat of the moment. Start practising them today, and soon they will become brilliant communication habits.
Communication is not something for which there is a defined formula, after all the best communicators are those with flexibility. They can go with the flow.
The people who we really enjoy talking to are those who somehow make the communication come alive, who create endless conversational possibilities.
So, enter any conversation with an open mind, don’t be afraid to be wrong and listen to the leads your conversation partner is giving you.