from the book AManaging Stress@
By Jean A. Hardy
1. Speak with precision and directness. Express yourself clearly by selecting words that describe your thoughts and feelings. Be direct about your thoughts and perceptions by verbalizing the intent of your message clearly.
2. Enhance your vocabulary. Vocabulary affects effectiveness of verbal communication. A small vocabulary decreases the ability to express oneself. Thus, the greater the vocabulary the more the flexibility in expressing oneself.
3. Use language appropriate for your listening audience. Assess words, expressions, and gestures most conducive to getting your point across for the age level.
4. Attack issues, not people. When trying to resolve conflicts, focus on the problem, not the people involved. Avoid character assassination.
5. Avoid putting others on the defensive. When initiating a dialogue to resolve conflicts, begin your statements with,AI perceive....@ thus placing the responsibility of understanding on yourself rather than blaming others.
6. Avoid asking someone else to pass on your thoughts and feelings to a third party. The most effective communication involves talking with someone face to face. Involving a third party increases the chances of mis-communication. Also, not making personal contact sends nonverbal messages.
7. Avoid information overload. Attention span is limited. The greater amount of information given, the greater the chances some of it will get lost. Pace your conversation allowing ample time to process the messages.
8. Validate your assumptions. Confirm what you think to be true with those who have given you this impression.
9. Resolve problems when they arise. If you feel there is a misunderstanding, there probably is. Avoiding it, or giving it too much time to fester, allows the conscious mind to validate feelings of victimization, anger or fear. Try to deal with issues as they surface by talking them out with those involved.