I’ve read that the brain is structured to take in information, draw conclusions based on our previous history, and then act on the basis of those assumptions……. a process that is largely unconscious.
My mom told me a silly joke the other day:
A lady told her husband that she was bringing their son to a child dentistry practice that had opened up in town. The husband responded “Wouldn’t you prefer an adult work on him?”
Ok, corny I know but miscommunication (while sometimes funny) is all too common.
We’ve all had a miscommunication “event”.
You know what I am talking about! Like when I tell my teenager to take the garbage out and he takes it out…..OF HIS ROOM (and I realize his brain is not fully developed, even though he thinks he knows everything!).
Why do these miscommunications happen?
Is it because of we are drawing conclusions based on our own assumptions?
Or because we simply misunderstand what is being said?
OR beacuse we speak without thinking about the effect of what we are saying will have on the listener?
Or because we are only half listening because we are already formulating our response in our head?
Here are a few simple ways to combat miscommunication:
- Listen- being a good listener is crucial to being a good communicator.
2. Observe body language- (which requires you to pay attention!) eye contact, hand gestures, facial expression all convey info.
3. Respect- People will be more open to communicating with you if you convey respect for them.
4. Keep an open mind- having a flexible, open mind set and being open to listening to and understanding the other person’s point of view, rather than simply getting your message across.
Good communication is an art! It is one we have to work on but once we master it, it is beautiful!