Waiting for today...: Article: The Five Communication Styles

Sunday, November 6

Article: The Five Communication Styles

In revisiting the issues that plagued my mother and I’s relationship before leaving home, I got to thinking more deeply about the importance of good communication in all relationships…

I remember writing a paper in community college about the communication loop.  I can’t remember how that topic was chosen in the first place but it was very interesting.  I found the sender and his message most interesting.  In doing research for that paper, nominal really, I learned how important it is for the sender to prepare (content) and package (tone, body language) their message before sending it.  Leave something important out, include something trivial, send it with the wrong attitude, in the wrong manner, even at the wrong time and the consequences could be destructive.

I often say a person gets only one opportunity to “stick the landing” in conversation; one chance to make it count.  When those conversations are also disagreements, it's our emotions that end up formulating and sending many of our messages unfortunately. Original intents are lost, core issues aren't addressed and our needs aren’t met.   I know this first hand.  ‘Cause I’ve always had difficulty communicating and fear often drove it.  

Always an extreme of not saying anything out of fear to the other of near rage from not having said anything, I never got the desired response.  And of course!  How could I if the receiver never understood my intent?  What was my intent?  Did I know in either extreme? I didn’t know it then but I was screaming out for help even in my silence.  So in the same vein, I’ve learned that recognizing my needs apart from being able to communicate them is equally important.   

Don’t get me wrong.  I am in no way absolving mature individuals of the responsibility to know how to identify the needs of a dependent.  But I could’ve avoided years of frustration, resentment and bitterness if I had this understanding much sooner than my thirties.  It’s why it has become a top priority for me in my personal life.  Even more so in my professional life.

Because I am a highly sensitive person on top of having mood disorder, it’s so easy for me to become consumed with emotion during exciting conversations.  So I’ve adopted a strategy: take a step back, mute the noise, look at facts, identify the issue and by all means keep it center.  And should the receiver get carried away in emotion, the only thing left to do is bow out of the conversation.  At minimum, my livelihood depends on it.

The following article suggests several communication styles and their characteristics, including those of its user.  Knowing how to identify these styles will not only help the sender to improve their own communication skills but will also help them to avoid the emotional pitfalls that some styles can create.

“Learning to identify the different communication styles - and recognising which one we use most often in our daily interactions with friends, family and colleagues - is essential if we want to develop effective, assertive communication skills… Being assertive means respecting yourself and other people.  It is the ability to clearly express your thoughts and feelings through open, honest and direct communication.”

con’t reading “The Five Communication Styles” by Claire Newton. Retrieved November 4th, 2015 from http://www.clairenewton.co.za/my-articles/the-five-communication-styles.html

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