How We Communicate

Have you ever thought that sometimes you seem to be speaking “Japanese” others just simply don’t understand what you mean or you expect them to have understood and then they do something or say something which is so different to what you expected?

Communication is one of the key ways in which humans interact on a daily basis. If we understand a little more about how our brains take data in and how it is filtered and stored, our communication methods vastly improve and the results we get would be much closer to what we were expecting and start limiting the painful misunderstandings.

How do we process information?

We use our 5 senses (see, hear, touch, taste and smell) to take in information from the outer and inner world. The information is then filtered and the information is distorted, generalised and deleted to make the amount of data we get, more manageable.

We all filter data differently depending on our experiences, memories, values, beliefs, decisions and attitudes. This means when someone says something to us our filters change that message based on these filters.

It is like vegetable soup …. when you pour vegetable soup, with loads of different veggies, through a sieve, the result is very different from one soup to another. We all have different sieves, some bigger than others and this means that some of us may end up with a thicker or a thinner soup – none are the same.

Once we have our so called “soup” we store it and then respond to it in some way. Our response is based on what we have stored so each of us will respond differently.

Now that we know this how can you change your communication style to be more effective

  • Deliver the message in different ways
  • Recognise that not everyone will understand what you’ve said 1st time round
  • Repeat the message in different ways and at different times
  • Be patient
  • Know that people change the message unintentionally

We can now let go of the fact that some people “just don’t listen” and we aren’t talking “Japanese”

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