Four Secrets for Effective Communication
The ancient prophet, Amos, asked the rhetorical question, "Can two walk together except they be agreed?"
Bob, walking by his neighbor's house, saw him struggling with a couch halfway in the front door. He walked up to his friend and asked, "Hey Fred, need a hand?"
"Sure!" came the reply, "I'm glad you stopped by. This has been a real challenge,"
So, he grabbed the end of the couch and started pushing -- but it wouldn't budge an inch. For about twenty minutes, both men struggled and strained as hard as they could, but made absolutely no progress.
Finally, dropping the couch from exhaustion, Bob said, "You know, Fred, this is just crazy! I can't understand why it's so hard for us to get this couch into the house."
"Into the house??" Fred replied, "I've been trying to push it OUT of the house!!"
When we don't communicate we often end up working against each other. We can't walk together unless we're going the same direction.
None of us are mind readers, so the only way to go the same direction is through clear, loving communication.
Doesn't communication cause fights? What if the things I need to communicate are hurtful? Isn't it better to just shut up and bear it?
Certainly, unwise and thoughtless communication can cause fights, but the lack of communication causes far more fights -- a hundred times more! It's better to communicate even the unpleasant things, rather than bottling them up inside, if you want your relationships to thrive.
The secret here is to practice the fine art of "disagreeing agreeably." This is mostly a matter of keeping a right attitude and sweet spirit as you tackle challenging issues.
All relationships require give and take. Great relationships require give and give!
1) Give In. You don't have to always get your way to be happy. Sometimes, the best and most loving thing is to submit to the other person's point of view, even if it's not your preference.
2) Give More. Can you give more love, attention and energy to this relationship? Make it your aim to outdo one another in love.
3) Give Way. Allow the other person some latitude and space. Honor and respect the unique individuality of the other person.
4) But Don't Give Up! You can't truly love somebody until you've been through some difficult times together. Don't quit when times are tough. Instead, dig in deeper, and discover the riches of loving forbearance.