Many of the clients I have been working with have had challenges with communication and I think it’s an important topic to discuss. Sometimes, those challenges are tone of voice, lack of paying attention or probably the most difficult to overcome, which is not being able to deliver the message you want your partner to hear.
Even the most challenging relationships can take steps forward if the two parties learn how to communicate. There are specific things we can do when we are communicating which can make our delivery and interpretation better in sending the message we are trying to convey.
When we look at someone when we talk to them, it conveys the fact that we are delivering a message to them. When we look off in another direction, or we are doing other things, it can convey other messages. The listener can interpret those body language clues as casual conversation, or the message isn’t important. If I take the time to look at you when we are discussing something and you reciprocate by looking at me intently, the communication will always be delivered and received more fluently.
It’s true that it’s easier said than done, but removing distractions from a conversation will help to close communication gaps. The first and foremost distraction I see with clients is the cell phone. When you are having a conversation that is important to you, turn the cell phone off and if you are addicted to it, put it in another room. Don’t allow a FB post or text message to interrupt the importance of the conversation in front of you.
Even though you may have an important point to make, allowing yourself to be distracted conveys the message that what you are talking about is not that important. Also, you may need to go in a room with no children, TV, computer or anything else which could deviate from your message. Often, the importance of what you want to convey to your spouse or significant other is shown in how you eliminate distractions to get your point across.
The Belly-Button Rule
You may have heard of this rule as it applies to attraction in general. When people are interested in you and what you have to say, they will point their belly button squarely at you as you talk. That shows they are engaged and they are focused on what you have to say. Although we do this without thinking, the fact is that we can consider this rule when we are having conversations with people that are special to us.
If you are uncomfortable with a conversation and you may have to discuss something that is not easy to discuss, start with sitting the listener in a way where your belly button is pointing directly toward theirs. This shows you are focused on talking to them, and even though they may not be aware, the listener will at least begin by being focused on you, as their body language and attention is directed toward you.
When we work to put our focus on listening and valuing what the other person has to say, then secondly getting our message across, we can take big steps in a short amount of time at building better communication in our relationships.
BMWK, did you know about the Belly Button Rule?