I have always believed that communication is one of the most important pillars that makes our transition through life smooth. Be it the organizational set up or relationships, communication is the absolute essential that underlies these complicated human structures. Then it is baffling that we spend so little time educating ourselves to communicate better. So today let us get a little technical and discuss the major barriers that impede the communication process.
Ever heard too many ‘umm’, ‘you know’, ‘so’, ‘aah’ or any such filler words in someone’s speech; that either means that the speaker is not too comfortable with the language or worse, he is purposely manipulating the information so that the receiver sees it more favourably. Perhaps it is a direct result of the humanity’s natural tendency to come across as likeable. We all filter information, sometimes without knowing; but remember this PRO TIP: you will never gain anybody’s trust by manipulating the content of your speech.
- Selective Perception
The world is a mirror of our thoughts, motivation, experiences and other personal characteristics, in other words what we see or hear, we colour that with these things before we actually perceive it and we have gotten so good at this over the course of human evolution that the process is now automated and our brain genuinely believes that what it is processing is the actual information that is being relayed, when it seldom is. The world is not what you see or hear, the world is what you make up as you go!
- Information Overload
One reason why I feel that our quality of communication has degraded in the recent years is that we have so many sources of information and the quantity of information is way more than our finite ability to process it. The result is that we tend to select, ignore, pass over or forget information which directly leads to less effective communication skills. Our brain is a fantastic piece of human anatomy, but it is not a machine, don’t treat it that way.
Aah, emotions! Another shade that we use to colour our day to day interactions. When we are in a negative mood (angry, sad, anxious etc) our brain goes into overdrive, we start scrutinizing in depth every communication and start analysing every action. We become insecure, irritated and annoyed. Whereas in a happy mood we take every communication, every action at face value; we feel we belong in this world and it is NOT out to get us. Here’s a PRO TIP: Never make any decisions however small or big, when you’re feeling negative, chances are, your overworked brain will take a shitty call.
These are the 4 barriers I am doing today; and the next 4 I am going to do in the next blog post. Because, like we just talked, I do not want to overload you with information.
Hope you find this useful. Feel free to leave your feedback in the comments!