Does anyone else ever wonder why it’s so hard to maintain healthy relationships? With the amount of lying, cheating, and ghosting our generation goes through, of course it’s hard to build a relationship with someone nowadays. But this got me wondering why we are like this? I can’t be the only one that thinks our generation needs some serious improvement in this department whether its with friends, a (potential) significant other, in a work environment, etc.
Let me tell you why I think our generation needs improvement. I think we can’t handle confrontation and communication through the fear of rejection. And that might be our biggest downfall. Call me crazy? No, but really think about it!
No longer interested in someone you’ve been dating for 6 months? Just ghost them.
Don’t have the balls to tell a friend they hurt your feelings? Just cut them off
Why be vulnerable when you can hide behind a screen, right?
This pattern of cutting someone off at any moment has made it hard to open up to someone since our fear of being rejected at any given moment is more likely in this day and age.
Communication was probably my biggest weakness and I’ve only got some what better at it. I took a communication course in college and the only thing I really remember learning is that when two people are talking, “a” doesn’t always equal “a” because sometimes” “a equals “b”
a =a or a=b
What she meant was that when you say something to someone, you basically have a thought in your brain that you are trying to get into the other person’s brain. It’s not always as easy as 1,2,3. You need to properly communicate and that is generally hard for most people (especially me). And that’s why a=b because the other person might not get what you are trying to say.
Raise your hand if the lack of communication has ever resulted in you having an unresolved conflict with a loved one? Yup! My hand is way up. About two years ago, I got into an argument with someone who was one of my best friends. This person was my best friend for over two decades. One day she said something about me that I didn’t like. I later poured all my thoughts and feelings into a text message and sent it to her in hopes she would apologize and we would be on good terms again. Well, what happened next didn’t go exactly as planned. She left me on read and never responded so I cut her out of my life for a while until we ran into each other about a year or so later.
The lack of communication in our generation causes resentment, unresolved conflict, and not getting what we want. Looking back, if both of us had better communication skills, I think we’d be closer than we are today. We might’ve had the same friendship we use to have before the conflict ever happened. Both of us were poor communicators.
Here is HOw YOU CAN BE A BETTER COMMUNICATOR:
- NON-VERBAL CUES: This has a bigger influence on what the other person takes away from what you say than the words itself. This is why you should be mindful of non-verbal cues. We believe what we see so nobody is going to take what you say seriously if you don’t have good posture or make eye contact. Don’t be afraid to use your hands and make sure you have a positive tone while speaking. Things like tone and attitude really sets communication apart from texting or even calling. Being there in person really sets a whole different vibe rather than over the phone conversations.
- PLAN AN IN PERSON CONVERSATION: Non-verbal cues is why you need to have a conversation in person. This is why it is important that you plan out what you are going to say. Focus on the message you are trying to get across. A lot of times, you have to over-communicate in order to make sure that a=a. If you need, bring list of bullet points you want to address throughout the conversation, then prepare it ahead of time. A list will help keep you on track of what needs to be said to the other person.
- LISTEN: Give the other person time to speak. This is about you, but it’s not all about you. The other person matters to. Don’t be afraid to let the person know if they are changing the topic, because you are trying to get specific points across. But, communication is a two way street. You understanding them is just as important as them understanding you. Ask them if they understand where you are coming from or if they have anything to add to the conversation. Ultimately, listen to understand, not to respond.
- MAINTAIN A POSITIVE ATTITUDE: Keep your cool. The person you are speaking to might get angry or upset. Let them know that it is ok and that you understand their emotions. The person might not cool down or come back, but you have to know that you tried and did all that you could.
- BE FAIR: Think before you speak and ask yourself: Is what I am saying fair to me? Is it fair to the other person? Is what they are saying fair to me? Treat others how you want to be treated, but at the end of the day you deserve to be respected and treated fairly.