Tuesday, October 26, 2010


While at work tonight, I realized how a breakdown in communication can disrupt work flow or cause potential detriment. Which is why as nurses, we are constantly badgering doctors with, "Did you really mean...?????"

It is so important to mean what you say and say what you mean when dealing with every aspect of your life whether it be personal or professional situations. Miscommunication or breakdown in communication builds mistrust, frustration, anger and causes potential errors.

Then there's that old phenomenon of too much information. Where sensory overload can cause a person to just shut down and not even listen to what you're trying to tell him/her any longer. Which again, will build mistrust, frustration, anger, and cause potential errors.

So, what is the key to communicating?

Strong listening skills. Listen to what the other person is trying to say. You may even want to repeat what they had said just to be sure you are hearing him/her correctly with a... "So, what I think I'm hearing you say is that...."

Take a deep breath before you speak. Just to let out a little of your own frustration and give you a chance to organize your thoughts. Count to ten, even. This will help keep you from saying something really stupid or just reacting in anger--especially if the other person has just chewed your butt for something.

If you're not even sure how to reply to something...maybe you shouldn't. What's wrong with saying, "I'm not sure how to respond. Obviously you're upset. Let me look into the problem and I will get back to you..." But make sure you get back to that person when you say you are planning to get into contact with him/her so that he/she knows that you haven't blown them off.

Have any communication issues lately? Let's hear them!!


Deena Remiel said...

Teenagers! Need I say more? They are a mass of contradictions. I think I've got a handle on my own, but, OH MY! There is no rhyme or reason to how they absorb information, process it, or how they deliver it.

Kathleen Grieve said...

You definitey have a point there! I have 2 teenagers--18 and 15 and a tween--she's 12. But there is hope!! A country song called "I'm a little bit harder and whole lot smarter" by Justin Moore. It speaks to a man who has now learned from his past experiences...LOL. I find it quite entertaining. And like I tell my 18 year old frequently, "You're an adult now. You have to make your own choices and live by them. So, consider your options carefully!" All we can do is guide...