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How to Communicate Well

Updated on March 18, 2010

There are many forms of communication. In this hub I will only talk about speech/verbal communication.

My son has an English vocabulary three times the size of mine. Sometimes I am awed by the big words he uses and I ask him what they mean. Sometimes I am too proud to ask, so I just look up the meaning. At all times, I ask him in what context he uses the words.

It is quite a delightful challenge to have an everyday dokusan* with a Zen Master who does not know he is one, yet. He is still a very typical american teenager.

He calls it verbal combat and with me, he always wins. He is a champion debater.

There can be no perfect communication, the best we can hope for is to have a very high degree of transmission of information between people.

The moment the information leaves the other person it is already flawed. It is impossible to communicate the thoughts/feelings that prompted the statement.

Our perception is colored by our experiences. These are called filters. We filter the information through a lens built by our upbringing, childhood, our ancestral and cultural heritage, the people we have interacted with.

There are a few things that we can do to enhance the communication process.

First, we acknowledge the possibility that the other person may not understand us perfectly.

Second, we allow a space, a gap, where anything can happen. We let go of the desire to be understood, to influence, convince the other person of our point of view. We state the facts as we see them. We remove aggression altogether.

Third we allow the other person to take what we say as he sees it through his own filter.

As for non verbal cues, we look them in the eye. When we do this we communicate our sincere desire to communicate, no matter how imperfect. We acknowledge the other person, just as he or she is.

__

*a dokusan is a verbal combat between a Zen Master and a student. It aims to determine the state of consciousness of the student. A master will ask the student a question and the answer is never the logical answer to the question.

I love the videos created by google and this is one of them on effective communication skills

The main block to our communication is our consciousness of ourselves. If we put attention, full attention to the other person, we would listen better, the other person will be more comfortable and will listen more to us. Try it..

Immediately there is an improvement in the process.

Finally, if it is public speaking that you are interested in learning, the key is practice, practice, practice.


Other forms of communication

Our dogs can tell me when they are hungry, when they want to go to the bathroom, when they want simple attention and when they are annoyed by simply looking at me or wagging their tail.They do not have to make a sound at all.

You can write love letters or you can also communicate telepathically. It is not a myth.

How to Write Love Letters

How to Merge Myth, Magic and Reality

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    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 6 years ago

      Thank you, Ray, for visiting and leaving a comment. Communication is actually quite challenging..for everyone.

    • aware profile image

      aware 6 years ago from West Palm Beach Florida.

      i love this hub .the subject matter i feel should be right up there with reading, writing and math in schools curriculum. esp at the elementary levels.

      ty

      ray

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 6 years ago

      Thank you, triosol!!

    • triosol profile image

      triosol 6 years ago

      Thanks msorensson. Great Advice. very informative hub. Voted up.

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 6 years ago

      Thanks, izettl.

    • izettl profile image

      Laura Irwin 6 years ago from The Great Northwest

      Really good hub and I find that I have communication issues from time to time, but I think I over communicate so I try to keep things simple and concise. I found the videos helpful on here. Great job!

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 6 years ago

      Thank you Ashley. I would like to take credit for some of my son's abilities but I cannot. He is smarter than the two of his biological parents combined...

    • ashleyyoung profile image

      ashleyyoung 6 years ago from United States

      Your son's verbal capacity is awe-inspiring. But aside from the influence of education, he surely owes some of it from great genes, basing on how well this hub was written. Hoping to read more from you Msoresson. :)

      Hugs,

      Ash

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      Oh Thank you, drpastorcarlotta!! I appreciate!!

    • drpastorcarlotta profile image

      Pastor Dr. Carlotta Boles 7 years ago from BREAKOUT MINISTRIES, INC. KC

      Well written sweetie!!! BRAVO! I LIKE! Voted Up!

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you, mwatkins :-)

      Much appreciated!!

    • mwatkins profile image

      mwatkins 7 years ago from Portland, Oregon & Vancouver BC

      Wow, I am so impressed with this hub. You have gone above the highest rung with your hub. I really got a lot out of it and the videos are excellent! I had to learn the hard way that we have 2 ears and 1 mouth and that if we use them proportionately in any argument we will always win - no matter the outcome. Thumbs up and thank you!

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      I agree that we ought to regard communication as an expression of ourselves and therefore we ought to conduct ourselves properly. The challenge is that the normal communication process is filtered through our egos and we ought to be aware of them when we communicate.

      Thank you for your comment!!

    • munirahmadmughal profile image

      munirahmadmughal 7 years ago from Lahore, Pakistan.

      "How to comunicate well?" Communication is Divine. Communication is Prophetic. Commnication is the media to perform the human role on this earth excellently whereby dignity of mankind is maintained. Simple and understandable communication, whether oral or written or by any other means is the requirement to convey the message. It is the truth in the message that gives it weight and durability. Sincere love also generates when the speaker and the listner are true in every respect. In every fraud there is falsehood which ultimately causes its vanishing. Hypocrisy is the worst behaviour. What we expect from others must also behave with others in the same manner. It is the dual standard that brings misunderstanding and conflict. The importance of the Communication can be very well understood by the words of the Messenger of Allah (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)when he said: Ballighu `anni wa lau aayatan. (Convey from myside even if you have a single sentence). Knowledge comes by conveyance. No one should be condemned unheard. The whole philosophy behind giving notice and calling explanantion is that rights of all are important and valuable and we should not behave in a manner where the other side may complain that no opporunity of hearing was given to him. If we go deep, it tells that communication helps in digging the truth and make it sustainable. Silence is not gold when rights of others are deprived by observing it. Restraint and tolerance have their value even in the matter of communication. Peace and Order require cooperation in affairs that are virtuous and graceful and non-copertion in affairs that are transgressive and disgraceful. Care and caution is the rule in all good affairs and communication is no exception to it. Communication is a behaviour and all behaviour requires to be conducted goodly and gracefully whereby others feelings are not hurt. The argument that what is there is speech is a fallacy. It is the speech the teacher makes; it si the speech the student writes in the examinations, it is the speech that is the result announced; it is the sppech that shows appointment; it is the speech that takes the formof Plaint and written statement, evidence and arguments and then Judgment. In all transaction we speak. What I want to stress is that man is to man himself. He is to control himself. He is to order himslef. He is to show respect to the rights of the others as well. Patient hearing is quality. Impatient hearing is a disqualification.

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      The essence of communication face to face : speak, listen a lot...then answer the other person.

      I prefer what you wrote, suny..telepathic communication :-)

      However we are in this world which requires us to communicate with others verbally most of the time.

      Thank you for dropping by.

    • suny51 profile image

      suny51 7 years ago

      Hello msorensson-I read every thing on this page including comments and your answers and am really impressed,I know now what I was missing all the while, including the communicational skills.

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      Again another synchronistic event, dallas. I posted the "To thine own self be true" just the other day.

      Thank you for dropping by. Much appreciated.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      As a former educator and administrator in this arena, the students taught me a lot about communication. They can multi-task and speak without the benefit of having their communication colored by their "jaded" experiences we adults have experienced. I have learned on occasion, to "actively" listen... not to passively listen waiting until I can say something. I have learned to communicate effectively is like a "teeter toter" it goes back and forth, up and down... I have learned that I must be in agreement with my speech/verbal communication. "To thine own self be true..." Another great hub!

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thanks, habee

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 7 years ago from Georgia

      Great advice! Communication skills are sooo important!

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      You are so funny...and lovable and charming and charismatic.

      I am looking forward to meeting you and your family sometime in the future.

    • De Greek profile image

      De Greek 7 years ago from UK

      My Ruthless Woman You! :-)

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      hi hi hi..De Greek..you and I operate on the same wavelength. The other night, I was telling one of my friends exactly that. On Facebook I have two accounts. One has 5000 connections + or minus 5-10 all the time.

      I have told everyone that in that account I will only have one group and one fan page. People keep inviting me to be their fan. One woman invited me five times!

      Had she only looked at her own fan page, she would have seen that I have already joined it, months and months ago, on my other account!

      I can tolerate it..for a couple of times..but 5X is too much.

      I removed her from my friends in that account.

      I also removed one person I have known a long time because he kept insisting to tag me on the ads for his pages, because I temporarily disabled posting on my wall.

      Then one person, whom I have just connected to, I removed immediately. First he posted an ad on my wall, without permission, then five minutes later, I got an email from him inviting me to join his webpage. It tells me that he only looked at my profile to get my email address.

      One person I blocked permanently from both my accounts, because he waits till I have already said goodnight to everyone to post his ads on my wall.

      I do tolerate ignorance and stupidity, up to a point. Not if it continues to annoy me.

      What they were doing was already abusing a temporary privilege, one that can be revoked immediately, temporarily or in the case of the other person, permanently.

      So you see, De Greek, I am capable of being ruthless and every once in a while, I am.

      Oh yes, I have learned more about life from my son than any other human being. He was born, worldly. Adept at the ways of the world. I do not know how, he did not get it from me, but he is.

    • De Greek profile image

      De Greek 7 years ago from UK

      All well and good, but what about the filters of ignorance and stupididy? How can you get through those? :D

      And for your son to love debate is really wonderful. Being able to communicate by using logic instead of agression - what could be better? :D

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you, Katiem. I hope they will enjoy it. Thanks for dropping by!!

    • katiem2 profile image

      katiem2 7 years ago from I'm outta here

      Great tips on verbal communication, loved the videos as well, I will let my kids read and watch the videos after school today. Awesome Thanks and Peace :)

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Precisely, ngureco, thank you for that. Yes, we need to listen more.

      This I had to develop, painfully I might say..when my then eight year old son asked me what he said at the dinner table and I could not repeat it..and he said "You're not listening to me!"

      I was too far away in my mind, thinking about the lectures I had to prepare for the next day..etc etc...

      It was a wake up call.

      Thank you for stopping by.

    • ngureco profile image

      ngureco 7 years ago

      Hello, Msorensson.

      Thank you for this good article. You have very strong points here as to why we humans finds it difficult to communicate with each other. I find that people who are good listeners are good communicators, more so because they show interest and respect to the other person.

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      GeneralHowtizer, that is such an acute observation :-). No, it would not be good for him unless I play well.

      I also taught him chess. At first I beat him. When he was nine, ha ha ha, he beat me 17 times in a row.

      I always play to win. He is good at it, as he is good in music :-)

    • GeneralHowitzer profile image

      Gener Geminiano 7 years ago from Land of Salt, Philippines

      very interestinf and great Hub as always... You have a great tandem together with your son eh... Wow that was so cool... Maybe You Lose the Debate deliberately for I know You are wittingly so good... You Love Your Son Well, is it?

      Thanks for sharing!

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you, Sagbee :-)

    • sagbee profile image

      sagbee 7 years ago from Delhi

      Quite an informative hub.. congratulations you have become successful in explaining the communication skills and how it can be improved.. quality hub.. :)

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you, ladybird33 :-)

      Much appreciated!!

    • Ladybird33 profile image

      Ladybird33 7 years ago from Fabulous USA

      Great hub! This is something I work on daily, truly, communication is key in everything you do. Great hub, thanks for the tips!

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thanks, Tony !! Much appreciated~~

    • tonymac04 profile image

      Tony McGregor 7 years ago from South Africa

      Namaste. Melinda, this is a stunning Hub. I am going to be coming back to it often.

      Love and peace

      Tony

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you Sage!! I appreciate!!

    • Sage Williams profile image

      Sage Williams 7 years ago

      I just love this article. I love the way you talk about the relationship with your son. I am intrigued by the way you speak of communication and I absolutely love the way that you said this, "Our perception is colored by our experiences. These are called filters. We filter the information through a lens built by our upbringing, childhood, our ancestral and cultural heritage, the people we have interacted with'"

      I find this hub to very thought provoking.

      Great Job!

      Sage

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you, Rismayanti :-)

    • Rismayanti profile image

      Rismayanti 7 years ago from Tropical Island

      thank you.. for your great hub.. informative and helpfull for my communication problems. I will follow you

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you, jstankevics. Yes, very true~~

    • jstankevicz profile image

      jstankevicz 7 years ago from Cave Creek

      msorensson, thank you for the excellent article on communication. The example of the dogs in your last paragraph really struck a chord. We pay attention to the dogs, so we understand their communication. Yet, with people we are often not such good observers.

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      Yes, in verbal communication, even on the telephone it is important to pay attention to the pauses.

      Thanks, Billy.

    • billyaustindillon profile image

      billyaustindillon 7 years ago

      Communication is something taken for granted - the ability to listen- something I know I have to always work on is one of lifes great skills.

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you, expats. Yes, we have to listen.

      This is actually not so easy to do because usually we want to convince the other person to our views. If we allow that space where we want nothing but appreciate the other person, then we can have real communication. Speak, pause and listen, speak.

      Thank you for dropping by.

    • expats profile image

      expats 7 years ago from UK

      I also think the art of listening is important to ensure good communication. Hence the saying we were created with two ears, but only one mouth.

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Wish you a shower of blessings, Lucia.

      Screaming and yelling is good [smiles].

      It shows passion and it shows that you are not so willing to give up on him so easily.

      That is actually very endearing [smiles]

      Much love,

      Melinda

    • profile image

      luciamurairwa 7 years ago

      Thanks Melinda,

      i do identify with what you say.. English is my second language too.. i speak as was taught in school, grammatically correct and sometimes rich in vocabulary..I am subtley learning from my partner the 'social language' full of slang which is relevant to my audience.

      as you may well know it can be a challenging and mentally isolating experience, but i will continue to scream and yell in a mixture of English and my native language..

      wishing you many blessings

      Lucia

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you, Lucia,

      When I was married, I asked my ex husband to correct my English as it is my second language. Sometimes he thought it very funny how I spoke but that was how I learned formal English in school.

      If you allow space between the two of you, and do not get caught up in your own filters, then you will do well.

      When uncertain, ask what the other person means.

      Oh..an insight..whatever you do, you can yell, scream, be mad, etc etc..please do not be silent.

      It is the deadliest weapon in a relationship, unless of course you can communicate with each other telepathically.

    • profile image

      luciamurairwa 7 years ago

      thanks for starting this thread msorensson. I found it so thought provoking at a very personal level. My partner and i are from completely different cultures. Our communication styles and contextualisation does play tricks on the meaning we convey to each other quite often. The meanings we assign to different phenomena can be different and is often a source of frustration on both of us But paradoxically exciting as every moment we are together is a rewarding learning experience.

      very god hub!!

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thanks Mickey~~

    • Micky Dee profile image

      Micky Dee 7 years ago

      Osho was excellent! Thank you very much!

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you, DeBorrah! Shower of blessings on this Holy Weekend!

    • DeBorrah K. Ogans profile image

      DeBorrah K Ogans 7 years ago

      Msorensson, Very good presentation on communication! Very thought provoking and educational! Thank you for sharing, In His love & Blessings!

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thanks hypnodude :-)Much appreciated.

    • hypnodude profile image

      Andrea 7 years ago from Italy

      Very interesting hub, and with pretty good information. I've taken a course n Public Speaking and then expanded studying by myself. So I can see your advices are correct. Very good hub, and now you've a new follower. :)

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you breakfastpop, for dropping by and leaving a comment.

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 7 years ago

      Excellent hub. Your advice is right on target and I thank you.

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Namaste, DynamicS,

      Yes, something happens when we allow the other person to be simply as they are without projecting our expectations of them.

      Thank you for dropping by and leaving a comment.

      Much appreciated.

    • DynamicS profile image

      Sandria Green-Stewart 7 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      Linda;

      This is very interesting and thought provoking as usual. Thanks for the reminder that communication is about the other person from a place of personal awareness. This is not always easy to do especially when discussiong passionate topics of opposing interests.

      Thanks for the reminder.

      Namaste.

    • msorensson profile image
      Author

      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you, James. I appreciate!!

    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago

      Outstanding Hub! I enjoyed this very much. You are spot on in your analysis.

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you creativeone59.

      God Bless.

    • creativeone59 profile image

      benny Faye Douglass 7 years ago from Gold Canyon, Arizona

      Thank you msorensson for a great hub with great advice. Thank you for sharing. Godspeed. creativone59

    • msorensson profile image
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      msorensson 7 years ago

      Thank you askjanbrass.

      My son is 18 going on 30. His passion is debate and he puts a lot of effort into it. He has many, many awards on policy debates.

      Our imprints and programs as we get older becomes this thick filter where we sift the information and they are not easily undone. We can remove/soften some of them, at least, by going into the gap between what we want to say and what the other person is saying.

      I am glad you like the videos. I like the google videos very much. They have the time and resources to make them really well.

      Osho, I find his videos almost always by serendipity so I try to put them where I can.

      Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment.

    • askjanbrass profile image

      askjanbrass 7 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Well, your son must be quite educated, as this post was quite nicely written. It's true: it's nearly impossible to have perfect communication. Setting aside virtual communication, like through e-mail and text messaging, verbal communication is stilled influenced by perceptual screens, i.e. our biases, past experiences, etc.

      Thanks for the videos and useful resources!