Identifying Ineffective Modes of Communication

This week we continue to discuss ineffective modes and methods of communication.

We want to look at how we use volume. This includes both ends of the spectrum – silence or yelling. We can consider these tools like a hammer. They are punishing and are hurtful. When we retreat into silence, we are withholding ourselves and any sort of resolution to the problems at hand. When we resort to yelling, we are forcing our way on others, when there are always many ways to be “right” at the same time. There is always a way to speak the truth with compassion. We can do so with firmness and a loving touch. Yelling is violent and unacceptable. We must learn to speak the truth without violently forcing our will on others.

Scolding is a subtler form of violence and chisels away at one’s self-confidence. Anytime one scolds, they are unhappy within themselves and punishing others for their unhappiness. Its basis is blame, which is always a lose/lose scenario. Nagging is a socially acceptable form of scolding.

Transmission by ESP is so prevalent, and also so insidious, it is very hard to perceive. You may laugh but so many of us use this mode! We are like children who think that everyone can hear our own thoughts. These thoughts are so very clear and loud, how could others not hear them?

The last two modes that we will discuss here are avoidance and vagueness. Avoidance can be considered dishonesty by omission. Vagueness is lacking the courage to be clear and express one’s needs. They are both rooted in selfishness. Not being true to oneself is selfish. This contributes to your misery, which makes you less effective as a human. It prevents you from being a true friend, partner, or family member. The tricky part is that they are hard to identify because they are often dressed up as good intentions or wanting to maintain the status quo. Peace is necessary, but we must learn when keeping the peace is at a great cost to ourselves and our integrity.

Your Assignment:

Look for areas where you may be using these modes of communication and rate how effective they are for you. Be gentle with yourself and know that you learned them from somewhere. This is not intended to place blame on someone or something else, it is a reminder that you can learn to do something else in their place!

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