Getting better with Communication

I stopped with a question in last blog post – How can we get strong communication skills?

To analyze further, let us first take a look at general definition of communication:

Definition of Communication: Exchange of information.

Exchange of information has two folds 1) information exchange within the mind (biologically saying inside brain) – i.e. gathering information, selection/rejection of ideas, words, structuring, processing emotions – 2) delivering information to external world. If the first one happens properly then second one also happens without any issue.

Every human processes outside information through 5 major sensory organs. Even internal organs sends information to brain through nervous systems that’s why we feel hunger, pain, sleepiness, etc. Whether you like it or not, brain does information processing throughout the life without any rest. In a day, one needs to talk to himself entire 24 hours & every second. Before delivery of information to external world, brain processes, structures and ques understandable sentences. While you are delivering processed information, brain didn’t stop – it does background processing of some more information or prepares next topic and stack it in the que for delivery. So, it is very important how you process information & what do you think about communication in your mind. Here are few factors that ruin communication skill development:

1. ‘Stranger’ factor – Most of the situations, you may be a stranger in the crowd – you may know one or two people & always try to keep your communication with those whom you know much. You may not approach others because you tend to think that “if I communicate my idea in this group, what do they think about me? Will they not think I am a new person and don’t have any say on this?”. One needs to come out of this cause to excel in communication skill.

2. ‘All those around me know more than what I know’ factor – This factor affects most juniors in organizations. As I mentioned earlier, goal of communication is to clarify or make others know you understood certain things, so one should remove this factor in mind to achieve the goal of communication.

3. ‘Earlier communication was bad’ factor – Whatever be the reason for your previous bad communication, every communication opportunity is new and unique as it happens in completely in different situations (may be with new set of people). If one keep on thinking about earlier bad communication and stay quite then communication skill will never get better. Here I like to share my experience on this factor. Four years back, after writing first few posts in this blog, I got feedback on my poor language handling in those articles. I felt very bad about my communication & even I thought of closing the blog, but I decided to take it as challenge & wanted to improve my communication skill – I posted regular posts and improved it to certain level. Now I reached 148 posts.

Communication is 80% mind (i.e. brain) related and 20% external delivery process. First step towards improving communication skill is to train your brain for better. Let us check how to develop proper mindset for stronger communication in next article post.

Communication – Is it tough skill? or an easy one?

My answer to the title question is – “Communication is a wonder skill that become tough or easy based on ones’ mindset.”

I mentioned Communication as ‘Wonder Skill’ as it brings wonder into the life. Excellent communication makes life brighter and more successful & in the downside, poor communication takes life to lowest point. I heard a lot of myths around communication and developing the skill. Myths are belief that strongly formed an image about something and breaking it is bit hard. To learn communication skill one need to come out of these myths. Here are the popular ones:

1. Communication is meant only for career: Communication is a human skill (even I can say every living creatures in earth has it) and we should not restrict only for career. Communication skill is required every second and every activity we perform.

2. Communication is just about talking to someone: Most of the time, communication synonymous to oral communication like speeches, presentations, discussions, etc. but communication is beyond just oral form. Writing, body language also constitutes communication.

3. To be good in Communication skill I need to know lot of hard words: This myth is a powerful one and most of the believers are well-educated ones. Hard words will make the communication more harder  & difficult to understand. Goal of communication is (and not limited to) i) asking/answering questions to gaining/impart knowledge ii) providing/gaining clarity on items iii) delivering/receiving information related to areas of interest.

Though millions of books, seminars, coaching classes available on communication, still many of us lack communication skill even after going through those. What is stopping us from taking a leap and achieving our life goals? How can we get strong communication skills?

I answer these questions in my next blog post.