This is a question that frequently comes up - is communicating really that important to learn? And listen, I get it - if this isn't a skill that comes easily to you, or you haven't had the opportunity to develop it in a way where it *doesn't* feel terrifying, you start to wonder if you can skate by without it. And at the risk of being controversial - yet - brave, I'm here to tell you: Big Yes. Communication Skills are important. All parts of life require communication, and the ability to connect with others. Personally, familiarly, romantically, professionally, the beat goes on - clear communication will allow those dynamics to become and stay healthy and mutually beneficial.
The ability to articulate your experience, listen deeply, and be open about your emotions and needs is the most effective way to enter, maintain, and strengthen relationships. It's the most effective way to problem solve within your own life. It's the most effective way to create connection, to others and for others to you.
Think of it this way: Communication helps solve the mystery. It's data that you share, information that you present to provide clarity on: Who you are - What you need -
And what you Don't Want. Without that red hot and personally unique information, the people around you can’t know what it is you want or need and can stuck circling what they *suspect* could help you. Sometimes they may guess well, but ultimately it will remain a gamble if you don't have the courage to find the words and share them. Without saying it, how will you…. Ask that Dreamboat on a date? Let your roommate know they need to clean their damn dishes?
Secure that good raise that you know you deserve? Connect with people who are just as weird and dazzling as you?
Tell your boyfriend to stop licking your face? (This is a bizarre and unfortunately real life example I am sharing.)
Think of it as a choice: You can either rally your nerve and face temporary discomfort to set yourself up to get exactly what you want /need….. Or you can stay silent, hint at, or talk around the desire and *hope* that maybe, at some point, someone will offer a variation of what you need. The question really is, are you willing to settle? Or are you ready to push a little for the life you deserve?
The list of what’s possible goes to infinity & beyond, but the source remains the same – Communication. Speaking up for yourself is the most effective way to make it happen. Like all skills, it is one that can be learned. And once you do, watch it transform your life.
Do you have a communication challenge or question? Submit to firstname.lastname@example.org.