Is it possible that as a professional trainer of effective communication that I still find myself often incapable of anything close to this concept with the person with whom I live? For my professional work I have studied various concepts of effective communication, the five love languages, empathic communication, communicating with difficult people, communicating across cultures, storytelling, giving and receiving feedback, etc. etc. All this knowledge does help me out in the classroom, and in intimate relationships it can be nearly useless.
Just over a year ago when I began this blog, I was full of tremors about what to write and how to write it, and luckily my need to communicate was bigger than my fears. Reviewing my posts as a part of scheduling for 2019, it came to me that my favorite posts on this thread, OFF TOPIC, seem to have written themselves. They came straight from my heart to the reader, concise and to the point. THE key to effective communication, is to be connected, aligned and within myself, then all the rest flows. The words I choose (verbal cues), the tone, the volume, the rhythm (para-verbal cues), the animation of my body language, flow in a natural and effortless way in spoken and written communication.
In my most intimate relationships I literally speak with food. Recently on a trip to the grocery store in Italy with a friend my glee over the very act of shopping in preparation for cooking for loved ones overwhelmed even me. I found myself standing at the cold meat and cheese counter thinking if this could be my job, I would be the happiest person on earth. If I could spend my life taking care of people’s hearts through their stomachs, and feeling wholly appreciated for it, I would be in constant bliss.
Therein lies the challenge, the wish to be appreciated in ways that I can understand and receive, which lead me directly to effective communication. How often does what a person says 100% reflect what they mean or feel? How frequently in our communal world do people express gratitude, openly and without reserve? Are we aware of the amount of time we invest in talking about what is going wrong/not going the way we want, in our lives? What role does consciousness play in effective communication and do we care?
All this meandering led me to my own version of rules to live by in order to help myself return to the flow of aligned, effective, heart centered communication in an instant. Originally this came to me as a way to effectively communicate in my most intimate relationship, with my husband. In reality it supports me in manifesting my thoughts and feelings effectively in every relationship.
RULES TO LIVE BY
RESPECT: myself and my spouse (others)
If I cannot speak kindly, do not speak
If I speak unkindly, expect to be ignored or told off (kindly)
Nothing I say here is really original or new. More of a reminder to consciousness and hopefully a support to living a joyous authentic life. I offer you my version of these rules to live by, which I have personally placed strategically in places I go to when I need reminding. I wish for you that applying these “rules to live by” enrich your expressions of effective communication and bring you back to the love within yourself, in an instant.