There’s a hidden component within ‘impeccability of words’ - to do our very best to communicate in a way that can be heard and understood... skillful communication. There are only a few communication classes offered - and the ones most of use have attended have been free and at home. In the cycle of learning, how well were our teachers taught?
For clear and competent communication, we need to be present, calm, and attentive. In the best of situations, both parties are. In my Buddhist tradition, Mindful Deep Listening and Loving Speech are important aspects of clear communication (more on Peace Practice page, scroll down to Communication)
Listening with our whole body - all of our senses, all aspects of our attention - and not thinking of what we will say next or when the right time to interject our rationale are all part of Deep Listening. We listen to learn, to understand, to offer the space for others to communicate from their heart. Even if we do not agree with the person or what they are saying, Deep Listening promotes understanding and compassion. This helps to know more fully their situation and circumstance, breaking down the barriers that create discrimination and separation.
Loving Speech is talking by using “I” statements and expressing only our experience. We do not comment on what the other person has “done to us” but instead share our personal experience. We are honest and fair in our communication, sharing with the intention of creating healthy relationship. Loving Speech arrives from contemplation of how we are feeling, the conditions that arose to produce those feelings, and a reflection of how we reacted or responded.
In all of this, it’s important to take responsibility for what we say, don’t say, how we say it. Always coming back to our intention is important, especially when the energy seems to be getting heated or excited, when we are getting lost in thought of what’s next, or directing too heavily towards our agenda. Healthy communication requires patience, peace, and mindful awareness of the impact to all. It requires openness, solidity, insight, and personal responsibility.
Bidding all of you peace and healthy, authentic communication today.
Mindfulness & Stress Management Coach