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Communicate Better: Three Steps To Be A Top Communicator

Communicate Better: Three Steps To Be A Top Communicator

Practice. There is no other way to communicate better.

The question then becomes, practice what? The three things one ought to do to be a better communicator are:

  1. Ask open ended questions: A yes/no question will lead to a yes/no answer. Ask questions that gets people to tell you what they think and feel about something.
  2. Understand: This means, actively listen to what the other person is saying. Don’t worry about responding. Just listen, and make the speaker aware that you are listening: Head nods, eye contact, mental notes all work, use them sparingly but use them!
  3. Replay: Re-iterate what someone just told you. With emphasis on what was new information to you in that conversation. “Oh , by re-iterating, I can make people feel like I’ve understood and listened to what they’ve said!”

There is no rocket science.

If you want to improve this about your skills, call or walk up to a person – your family, friends, a colleague, some stranger – and apply these techniques every single day.

Incidentally, if you’re talking about communicating by speaking better rather than being understood – then stand in front of a mirror and say something. anything that comes to your mind. Look at your expressions, your tone, your enunciation. It’ll feel awkard at first, but you may get a better sense of what people see when they look at you.

What Should We Do To Improve Human Life?

I was very close to making the title of this post “the three steps to achieving world peace” or “improve human life in three easy steps”. Those would get me the clicks, but would they bring back my soul?

Jokes aside – this was originally a question on quora. I liked the question so much, I decided to put it up on the blog as well. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

I think I have the perfect solution to this question – and my gut says that it will work if we are willing to adopt it. My gut, and my past knowledge of humanity, also says that this will probably not be adopted.

1. Empathize 

Try to understand the other person. Do something for him or her. Try to get where they’re coming from, their motives, intentions, the why of their existence.

This goes a long way because you and I can quickly forgive those whom we know have a good intention.

2. Forget about ownership

This is not just about material ownership. This goes for the time when you say my wife, my child, and my thoughts. Yours is not yours. Mine is not mine. Your child has his own motives and intentions and the same mantra goes for your other half. Let everyone do whatever the hell they want – with a few rules. Don’t hurt others, Don’t be destructive and if you need to destroy 1 resource, make sure you plant 2. There is no I.

3. Focus on the positive

Lots of amazing things happen in the world every day. Lot of these amazing things we don’t even know about. I wrote in a previous post about how the chances of us existing at all are close to none – can you imagine what the chances of you existing are?

It’s crazy stuff!

The big stuff aside – focusing on positive is important because it makes us happier. And a happier human being is a happier society. “Im so tired” has become the mantra of our generation and is it really all that necessary to be all that tired all the time?

On the same lines, it is possible that we might not have come as far as we have today (space travel, energy innovation) if we didn’t have the innate need to own and compete for limited resources.

But if #2 is not possible, I am pretty damn sure that we can all still empathize and focus on the positive things in our life and world. That alone brings us 66% (2/3rds) closer to where you want us all to be. And if you’re talking about improving human life – perhaps one ought to start with oneself.

I’m keenly aware that this answer focuses solely on the non-material aspects of improving human life, and in my opinion, it seems to be the most important at the moment.

Comparing yourself to others is crazy – but you already know that!

I’m sure that you have heard of this quote widely attributed to Einstein:

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by it’s ability to climb a tree, it will live it’s whole life believing it’s stupid.”

It’s quite apt in a situation where we tend to compare ourselves to others. Perhaps we don’t think you are stupid, but comparing our lives to others’ is a sign of looking externally for validation of our abilities.

I’ve been in the workforce, as have many others, for longer than I have been in college. Anyone of us can tell you that grades do not matter as far as ability to lead a successful life goes.

To live a successful life, some of the things you need are:

  1. empathy
  2. emotional intelligence, and
  3. an ability and willingness to prioritise the needs of you and those around you
  4. and a host of other things

Ask yourself this question: why are you comparing yourself to others? Is it because it gives you a sense of satisfaction that you have done well? Is it because it’s very important to you that you have a better life than others?

If you answered yes to one or both the questions above – then consider this:

It’s great that you know that grades are important to you and want what they have. You would do well to focus on getting the best life you possibly canComparing can lead to temporary depression and it is just unnecessary stress you don’t really need.

Comparing your life and wanting it to be better than others is like saying: I don’t want to just win, I want others to fail.

Alternatively, compare your life and be happy when you get better grades than others. And when you don’t, make a mental note that you have another chance next time and you’ll do better.

These are the different alternatives you have. No one way of thinking is the best possible thought – life is subjective.

In most of life you will do well if you are able and willing to invest time into what you do. But you will do even better if you are able and willing to take others along with you on your journey.

In my opinion, comparing isn’t necessary. Life is a team game and we, the human kind, are one team.

Thoughts?

PS. I had originally written this as an answer to a quora question on grades. I liked the question so much, and it was so apt to life, that I decided to answer it as a question on life.