Effective Communication

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Effective Communication

Improving Communication Skills in Your Work and Personal Relationships

It sounds so simple: say what you mean. But all too often, what we try to communicate gets lost in translation despite our best intentions. We say one thing, the other person hears something else, and misunderstandings, frustration, and conflicts ensue.

Fortunately, you can learn how to communicate more clearly and effectively. Whether you’re trying to improve communication with your spouse, kids, boss, or coworkers, you can improve the communication skills that enable you to effectively connect with others, build trust and respect, and feel heard and understood.

What is effective communication?

Communication is about more than just exchanging information. It’s about understanding the emotion and intentions behind the information. Effective communication is also a two-way street. It’s not only how you convey a message so that it is received and understood by someone in exactly the way you intended, it’s also how you listen to gain the full meaning of what’s being said and to make the other person feel heard and understood.

More than just the words you use, effective communication combines a set of skills including nonverbal communication, engaged listening, managing stress in the moment, the ability to communicate assertively, and the capacity to recognize and understand your own emotions and those of the person you’re communicating with.

Effective communication is the glue that helps you deepen your connections to others and improve teamwork, decision-making, and problem solving. It enables you to communicate even negative or difficult messages without creating conflict or destroying trust.

While effective communication is a learned skill, it is more effective when it’s spontaneous rather than formulaic. A speech that is read, for example, rarely has the same impact as a speech that’s delivered (or appears to be delivered) spontaneously. Of course, it takes time and effort to develop these skills and become an effective communicator. The more effort and practice you put in, the more instinctive and spontaneous your communication skills will become.

Barriers to effective interpersonal communication

  • Stress and out-of-control emotion.  When you’re stressed or emotionally overwhelmed, you’re more likely to misread other people, send confusing or off-putting nonverbal signals, and lapse into unhealthy knee-jerk patterns of behavior.  Take a moment to calm down before continuing a conversation.
  • Lack of focus.  You can’t communicate effectively when you’re multitasking.  If you’re planning what you’re going to say next, daydreaming, checking text messages, or thinking about something else, you’re almost certain to miss nonverbal cues in the conversation.  You need to stay focused on the moment-to-moment experience.
  • Inconsistent body language.  Nonverbal communication should reinforce what is being said, not contradict it.  If you say one thing, but your body language says something else, your listener will likely feel you’re being dishonest.  For example, you can’t say “yes” while shaking your head no.
  • Negative body language.  If you disagree with or dislike what’s being said, you may use negative body language to rebuff the other person’s message, such as crossing your arms, avoiding eye contact, or tapping your feet.  You don’t have to agree, or even like what’s being said, but to communicate effectively without making the other person defensive, it’s important to avoid sending negative signals.

Source: helpguide.org

Former MA Resident Faces Child Abuse Charges

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Attleboro District Court’s James H. Sullivan Courthouse

NORTH ATTLEBORO, MA  –  A 36-year-old former local man is awaiting arraignment today on charges he allegedly beat his girlfriend’s 19-month-old daughter in 2013.

Sean Sherrick faces two child abuse charges in Attleboro District Court.

He was summoned to court in April 2013 but failed to appear for his arraignment.  He has been wanted since that time on a default warrant and his whereabouts since then were not known, according to police.

He was recently arrested in Rhode Island and was held on fugitive charges before being brought to the North Attleboro police station and court this morning.

At the time of the alleged assault in February 2013, Sherrick was the mother’s boyfriend.  The pair is no longer together and Sherrick is not the child’s biological father, according to police.

The mother told police she left her daughter with Sherrick at their North Attleboro apartment to pick up her paycheck at work in Norton.  She returned and later found bruises on her baby’s face. She took the baby to the pediatrician and the baby was later taken to Hasbro Children’s Hospital, according to police.

Police were notified at the time by the state department of Children and Families.

Janie’s Fund To Help Child Abuse Victims

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Steven Tyler Launches Janie’s Fund

Steven Tyler Launches Janie’s Fund to Help Child Abuse Victims

Steven Tyler has launched a new philanthropic initiative that aims at raising money and awareness to help girls who have suffered sexual abuse, the singer announced today.  For Janie’s Fund, a nod to Aerosmith’s 1989 hit “Janie’s Got a Gun,” Tyler will partner with Youth Villages to bring hope and healing to those victims of neglect and abuse.

On Pump’s “Janie’s Got a Gun,” Tyler tackles the issue of child abuse and incest in the song’s lyrics, and the creation of Janie’s Fund has been a longtime goal of Tyler’s.  “As a father and grandfather, I want to focus my energy on things that really matter and leave behind something else in this crazy world along with my music,” Tyler said in a statement.  “I am starting Janie’s Fund to give a voice to the millions of victims who haven’t had one and encourage everyone to join me on this mission.”

To help plant a foundation for Janie’s Fund, Tyler has launched a Prizeo page filled with unique rewards for those who donate, ranging from t-shirts for $50 “Star” donors to $25,000 “Big Kahuna” donors who will receive a “VIP Mardi Gras Experience” with Tyler. There’s also a Janie’s Angel reward for donors of $75,000 that will include “dinner with Steven Tyler and receive one of his iconic scarf enrobed mic stands (with a working mic) as well as a limited edition signed and numbered framed copy of the ‘Janie’s Got a Gun’ lyric sheet.”

All donors will be entered into a raffle to win the “Ultimate VIP Rock Experience with Steven Tyler” prize, which will include walking down the red carpet with the rocker at his upcoming solo album’s release party as well as the opportunity to hang out with Tyler backstage.

Tyler adds on the Janie’s Fund Prizeo page, “Now…We can’t undo what’s been done by abuse in this country…but we CAN let these girls know they are loved, get them the help they need, and assure them that there is MUCH LIGHT at the end of the tunnel.