How to Communicate with Honesty, Transparency, Compassion, Sincerity and Assertiveness
In today’s fast pace and technology driven world with ever growing scandal and deception, we should all be encouraged to deepen our communication and strengthen our bond with one another.
Starting at home with our wives, husbands, children and family is a perfect place to start.
While not every conversation we have will be deep (or needs to be) it should be our over-arching goal.
What better way to live than in an enriching society where ideas and conversations can blossom without prejudice or ridicule.
While none of us are or ever will be perfect communicators, we can always strive to be better. It’s important to acknowledge now, there may be reasons from the past why you and others find it difficult to develop deeper and more meaningful communication.
Reasons for Shallow Communication Could Include:
- Being ‘shot down’ or belittled in the past
- Feeling rejected, humiliated or embarrassed
- Being interrupted
- Feeling not good enough
- Feeling not heard or listened to
- Feeling unworthy by hierarchy
- Childhood upbringing / old beliefs holding you back such as:
- “Children should be seen but not heard” and
- “Do not speak unless spoken to”
- Intimidated or controlled by fathers / mothers / brothers / sisters / priests / teachers / the opposite sex
A Wonderful Opportunity for All
For these reasons alone it’s easy to understand why we need to work to improve our communication and help others to grow. Fulfilling relationships and happier lives are just the start. Imagine what’s possible if everyone pursued deeper communication.
Could a world without war, famine, disease and corruption exist? I truly think so.
But first things first. let’s start with you and me!
Four Levels of Deep Communication
Let’s now take a look at the four broad levels of communication and the types of things that go along with each level. Once you have an understanding of all these components, you can take action immediately.
- Enjoy deeper more meaningful conversations.
- Hear and understand each other better.
- Be fulfilled, respected and
- Sshare your new found revelations with others!
What's All This Mean?
Superficial and Selfish – Surface level communication.
- Pleasing – Passive communicator, agrees with and speaks to please. No depth. Reserved and insecure. Playing it safe. May have been hurt or rejected in the past.
- Dismissive – Not interested in anyone’s perspective or ideas other than their own. Shallow, naïve, disrespectful, impatient, closed minded.
- False – False – Projects a false image of oneself to appear smarter, happier or, above others, or to protect themselves from personal insecurities.
- Guarded – Protective of self, low resilience, past hurts or current emotional wounds’ may be present.
- Judgemental – Feeling better by putting others down or redirecting blame. Fear of being left behind, fear of not being good enough, feeling invisible, unworthy or ashamed.
- To Be Right – A focus on winning to ‘feel better’. No regard for alternate viewpoints.
- Gratification – Pursuit of fleeting feel good moments with little or no substance.
- Baring – Verbal ‘purge’ of thought based on emotions, too much information, a one sided ‘conversation’.
- Interrupt – Cutting off conversation mid-sentence. Changing topics, no consideration for alternate viewpoints. A sense of importance. Shows lack of restraint, courtesy and emotional control.
- Desperate – Seeking to fill a void in their life, lonely and clamouring for connection. May not have quality relationships in their life or suffer from low self-worth.
Selective Listening – Beneath the surface communication
- Convenient – Communicates only when it’s convenient, requiring little effort or thought.
- Satisfaction – Selective listening to satisfy personal needs with little consideration for others.
- Cautious – Avoids difficult or sensitive topics and avoids conflict or deeper levels of conversation for fear of rejection or embarrassment.
- Self-centred –Consistently redirects the conversation back to themselves or shares personal experiences and opinions with low value or regard for others.
- Bland – A one topic wonder or someone who ‘sits on the fence’. Stays quiet on any deeper complex topic of discussion.
- Lazy – The same conversations over and over again, no effort to broaden horizons or challenge ones thinking with new possibilities or ideas.
- Comfort – Conversations with the same people on safe topics, rarely stepping outside ones comfort zone. A fear of rejection and insecurity.
- Assuming – Jumping to conclusions and connecting dots that may not be there. A lack of critical thinking an emotional self-control. A persons past can heavily sway an incorrect assumption.
- Impatient – Restless body language, unfiltered rapid fire speech and minimal restraint in waiting for ‘their turn’ to speak.
- Distracted – Fiddling with their phone, holding two conversations at once, or otherwise pre-occupied with something else.
Empathic Listening & Authenticity – Quality communication
- Truth Seeking – A conversation based on facts and honesty, not opinions, rumour or falsehoods.
- Challenging – Tactful questions to respectfully challenge the narrative with authenticity and transparency.
- Inquisitive – Thinks outside the box and hears whole heartedly to probe further with the aim of deeply understanding.
- Sincere – Honest intentions and “what you see is what you get” character. No hidden agendas influencing communication.
- Vulnerable – Raising new ideas, being open to feedback, accepting challenges, mature to accepting others views. ‘Going there first’ on difficult or taboo topics. Handling rejection responsibly.
- Discipline – Processes thought with care and consideration. Listens and communicates with whole of body. Uses emotional self-management effectively.
- Responsible – Accepts responsibility of own thoughts, words, actions and delivery. Understands self and is grounded in character.
- Mature – Learns effectively, is adaptable and can use language appropriately to communicate effectively to a variety of people and audiences.
Deep Understanding & Trust – Deep Communication
- Honest – Speaks the truth and uses facts to inform and deliver quality communication.
- Compassionate – Speaks boldly from the head, heart and gut with conviction and compassion.
- Transparent – No hidden agenda. Boundaries are known and communication is consistent.
- Respectful – Is tolerant of difference, is forgiving, is welcoming, and is not above or below anyone else.
- Assertive – Articulates points of view easily and without delay. Keeps communication clear and concise with no ambiguity.
- Mindful – Is fully present in mind, body and spirit and communicates with complete awareness and attention.
- Decisive – Is skilled in evaluation of thought and decisions are made without undue delay or procrastination. Is not ruled by external pressure and manages risk accordingly.
- Humility – Is humble in their success, is praising of others and collected in their thought and behaviour. Is not seeking to grand-stand or ‘steal the limelight’ for personal gain and notoriety.
- Appreciative – Grateful for others and contributions made. Appreciates different views, experiences and efforts.
Is Communication a Problem in your Relationship?
How to Have Deeper Conversations?
In the next article of this series, coming soon, we will look further at how you can move ‘deeper’ in your conversations.
For now, commit to one or two actions based on the above ‘tags’ and the ideas below. By implementing these changes in how you communicate – how do you think your life and relationships will improve?
Looking at the first two layers of the ‘Deep Communication’ graphic. What do you recognise in yourself?
Are you distracted by your phone like Jess? Are you too guarded and reserved at times? Perhaps you are often stressed and are quick to assume – jumping to conclusions?
Whatever it is commit to taking steps to reduce these behaviours in your communication.
Stick with it and I wonder what benefits you notice?
What is one new thing you can do more of in the last two deeper layers?
Could you drop your guard just a little bit and be more open and accepting of others views as you listen more intently?
Perhaps it’s moving out of your comfort zone and putting in some effort to connect with new people, or talking about something different with old friends?
Start small and introduce changes gradually. What do you notice?
We are all on a journey of growth. We are all at different stages and come from all walks of life with different life experiences and beliefs. Therefore before we put ourselves down or judge others harshly on how it is we communicate; Understand ‘its ok’ to communicate differently, at different times, with different people and so on.
With good honest intentions at heart we can only become deeper communicators over time.
Top Related Resources
Stay tuned for the next article in the series. If you enjoyed this post be sure to check out: