In a fast-paced world, many communications are a short text or tweet. A consistent and high-quality communication with the people you care about deserves more attention than just a few words. When you want a deeper connection, this requires more time and effort. Try these tips to improve your communication skills with family and friends.

Take the Time to Focus and Listen

Many people have so much to do that they try to multitask most of the time. While it might be effective to chop vegetables while waiting for water to boil in the kitchen, multitasking does not work well when it comes to communicating with your family and friends. When you want to communicate with a family member or close friend, take the time to focus on the conversation. If you are speaking in person, power your phone down. Turn off the television and other electronic devices. Focus and listen on the person in front of you. Show that you are listening by repeating or paraphrasing what your family member or friend said.

take the time to focus and listen

Release Trapped Emotions with Muscle Testing

If you find it difficult to communicate with your family members or friends, it could be due to trapped emotions. Consider muscle testing to release trapped emotions. When testing muscles, the blocked emotions and energy are released as you focus on the idea or thought that is troubling you. The person directing your muscle testing session will show you how to open and close your hand as you hold an item representing the problem that is blocking your emotions. After a successful muscle testing session, you should have a clear and focused mind that enhances your ability to communicate with others.

Schedule Time to Talk When There Are No Distractions

It is easy to get distracted when what you really need to be doing is focusing on your family member or friend. Try to set aside a time to talk with your family member or friend when you do not have to be doing anything else. If you have to actually make an appointment with your friend by blocking out the time in your calendar, do it. When you need to talk with one of your children, consider leaving the house and having the conversation at the park or in a coffee shop or restaurant. This prevents you from getting distracted by housework or other members of the household. If you need a block of time to talk with your partner, consider hiring a babysitter or swapping childcare with another family to watch your children so you can have uninterrupted time together.

How to Improve Your Communication Skills with Family and Friends

Try a Variety of Communication Techniques

Different people prefer different communication techniques. Some people enjoy a face-to-face conversation in a quiet setting, while others prefer to talk over coffee or a glass of wine. Some people communicate best through written messages such as email or text. For family members and friends who live too far away to talk in person, video calling services or a regular call may be desirable. It could also be fun to change things up once in a while. If you normally text your partner, consider a handwritten note or a quick lunch together. Get up early and go out for coffee with a friend on a weekend while your partner watches the kids.

Communicating requires regular effort from everyone involved. When you are able to focus on your friend or family member and listen to his or her words, your communication should improve. Dedicating time to spend with the people you care about and eliminating the things that distract you the most will also help you with developing more effective methods of communicating.

Rachelle Wilber HeadshotAuthor Bio: Rachelle Wilber is a freelance writer living in the San Diego, California area. She graduated from San Diego State University with her Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Media Studies. She tries to find an interest in all topics and themes, which prompts her writing. When she isn’t on her porch writing in the sun, you can find her shopping, at the beach, or at the gym. Follow her on twitter:@RachelleWilber

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