01 Dec Engaging in Helpful Conversations
Communication is key to healthy relationships and we often hear stories from people with whom we work of times when communication is lacking. How do we build mutually sustaining trusting relationships?
The first step is to have open, honest and direct conversations with others. The next tip is to move away from making assumptions and creating our own interpretations of what others are telling us. For instance when we perceive that our partner or child or friend might be telling us something, being able to clarify what they are saying is always helpful.
We cannot read others minds and neither can they be expected to read our minds. Try saying something like, “I think you’re saying this, is that it?” The words we choose are also important. Words that convey respect, connection, appreciation, compassion and hope cultivate emotional connectedness. Language really can be used to build relationships and create change.
Being engaged in a healthy conversation also means being a good listener. Listen attentively, carefully, and sincerely. Also did you know that we communicate a lot in non verbal ways? A gentle touch, a smile and a hug goes a long way in terms of communicating caring and concern.