065: Superior Communication Techniques

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Welcome back to Tuff Love with Rob Kandell. The topic today is something Rob talks about a lot and that is communication. But even though it’s a topic that comes up in a lot of the other show topics, there has never been a show completely devoted to communication tips and tricks and techniques. In this episode, Rob shares his 8 favorite communication tips so you can take them and get working with them!

Some of these tips come from the writings of Scientology, some come from Morgan, some from Nicole from OneTaste and some from Rob himself. Hopefully these tips will add to your life.

(1) Everything is a communication.

  • We’re missing an incredible amount of communication because we’re not looking at the specifics of the communication.
  • Look at the clothes you’re wearing right now. How does your hair look? What are your facial adornments (beard, moustache, makeup, jewelry)? What is that trying to communicate? Everything about you is a communication and we don’t know that we’re actually doing it.
  • What about your body? Your stance, the shape of your shoulders, your facial gestures. Look at everything you are doing as a communication because then you can actually communicate better and read communication better.
  • Women are notoriously better at reading non-verbal communication than men, because they’ve been trained to figure these pieces out. So men often miss a lot of pieces of communication, so Rob advises that you look beyond the obvious to notice these things.
  • If you’re not going to do that, you’ll miss communications and the person will feel ignored. A large part of the breakdown in communication is that women assume that men notice, when in fact they haven’t been trained to do it so they don’t notice.

(2) There are three components to every communication: the words, the intonation and the intention.

  • The words are the context—the words you’re saying, writing, texting etc—but it’s only one part of the communication. People tend to take a lot of stock at the word level but it’s only one of the three.
  • The intonation is the modulation of the voice, the speed, the pitch, the volume, the eye contact etc. If the words and the intonation don’t match up, you get something called cognitive dissonance, where it’s clear something is wrong.
  • The most powerful part is the intention behind the communication. The intention is what you really wanted to say or communicate. This is sometimes really subtle and unaware. What happens is the words say something good, but you walk away feeling like shit. It’s because the intention of the communicator is not to be nice but to be biting or cutting.
  • For the master communicator to ensure that his communication lands, all three parts—words, intonation and intention—need to line up.

(3) Close the cycle of communication.

  • This is a powerful technique: when you say ‘yes,’ ‘okay,’ ‘thank-you,’ ‘I got it,’ or ‘alright’ then what that does is closes the communication. Saying ‘maybe’ leaves the communication open with missing pieces. When you have uncompleted communications it takes energy and time
  • Saying thank-you is one of the most powerful ways to close communication. It says, ‘I acknowledge the communication dance is over, for now.’

(4) Use a communication bridge.

  • This is something a lot of people do consciously but not a lot of people do well. It’s when you want to move from topic A to topic B. Switching quickly from A to B will get the listener lost. A communication bridge says ‘I want to finish talking about topic A and I want to start topic B.’ You can say, ‘Okay, I want to change topics now. Is that okay with you?’
  • Often what we do in communication is we have these long run-on sentences, and then all of a sudden the topic changes and it’s confusing. The communication bridge will ensure that your listener will follow your communication from point A to point B. It’s a really powerful tool.

(5) The responsibility of the communication is on the communicator.

  • A lot of times we think if we just send a message, it’s done and complete. The communicator needs to ensure that the communication lands. The best way to do this is to tell the person that you have something to communicate, and when you tell them you wait for them to thank you.
  • We rely on our texts and our phones more and more, so this is even more important with text communication. Take the time to ensure the communication lands.

(6) It is the listener’s responsibility to accept that they are adding connotation to the communication.

  • It’s on the listener to acknowledge that they are taking the stimuli of the communication and adding connotation to it.
  • The communicator can ensure that the possibility for connotation being added shrinks. The more specific they make the communication, the better.
  • If the listener gets offended, or hurt, or turned on, they are responsible for that piece. You can’t make anyone feel any particular way, it’s up to them to choose how they feel.

(7) Use the power of the reframe.

  • A reframe is when a person takes their perspective on an experience, and changes the way that they could view it. The reframe can take an experience and change the whole feeling around it. When you want to be of benefit to someone, learn how to reframe places that they feel stuck. It’s not to fix them or minimize how they feel but just to offer them a new opportunity to look at something differently.
  • The way Rob often reframes is by asking himself, ‘What’s the value or lesson in this experience?’ From that he gets more power in his life.

(8) There is a difference between masculine and feminine communication.

  • This isn’t man/woman specific. Masculine and feminine communication has very different goals and ways of being.
  • Masculine communication tends to be projectile. They tend to push out, communicate for a reason, to solve a problem, get something from point A to point B. It’s about creating something or fixing something, and have the action move forward.
  • Feminine communication is one of receptivity. It’s one of connection, to evoke empathy. It’s not about production but about building bonds and intimacy.
  • What happens often between people is that they are speaking on different levels and it creates friction. If you find yourself in a communication sticking place, you can examine if your partner is speaking a different language.

Rob coaches Sayad, and together they explore the ways to build intimacy and connection with regards to communication.

  • Sayad finds that when he meets new people, initially there is some opportunities for connection, but over time it always fizzles out. He has a lot of acquaintances who he keeps in touch with but feels perhaps due to his masculine communication style that he doesn’t build intimacy with people.
  • He did not have primary examples of intimacy and connection growing up, which is the core challenge. We learn very quickly in the years from 0 – 8 years old and it has a huge impact and influence on who we are. Sayad didn’t have any secure attachments in that age to practice with or learn intimacy.
  • Sayad has 32 years of habits born from unattached, un-intimate foundations that un-enables him to be intimate right now. He wasn’t taught how to be intimate, which was not his fault. Rob implores Sayad not to beat himself up over this and to have self-compassion and intimacy with himself over this.
  • When you look at life as an experiment, you can’t do it wrong. Sometimes in experiments, the results that do not prove your hypothesis are more important than the ones that do. You will make miscues along the ride but that’s ok because it’s part of the ride.
  • People love to have attention paid to them. If you’re in a conversation with someone, the way to get connected and create intimacy is for you to put your attention on them and ask questions. Spend 75% of the time connecting with people paying attention and asking them questions. Don’t interrogate, just have a soft focus of curiosity and attention.
  • Be brief. Use as few words as possible to get your point across. Be to the point, keep things really crisp and clear.
  • Don’t lose your audience. If you’re talking to someone and after the first 4 or 5 minutes, you get the notion that they might be full or getting bored, close the conversation. A lot of times people keep talking and extend the conversation because they’re afraid it will never happen again. But if they overdo it, they ensure the communication will never happen again. Always leave them wanting more.
  • If you want to talk to someone again, don’t leave it up to chance. Take the vulnerable action of asking for the next interaction. Show your interest and your curiosity.
  • Sayad does have a crush on someone, but feels he clams up when she’s around. It’s an opportunity for him to reach out and practice these communication skills with her.
  • There’s so much isolation going on in society, but it just takes one person being vulnerable to move forwards towards creating that intimacy.
  • Start off small, start off simple. Don’t beat yourself up for not being good at the complex language when you first start. It takes practice.

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