On each and every day, we rely on our interpersonal skills. Every encounter with another requires us to communicate. From a polite exchange with a stranger, to an in-depth chat with a friend or an attempt to resolve a problem at work, we need effective communication skills to get through the day.
In the majority of cases, we don’t have time to plan and prepare a conversation. We speak, listen and respond to what’s been said. You may be well aware that our state of mind at the time can have a noticeable impact on how the conversation develops and the conclusion. If we are tired, angry or resentful the exchange is likely to be more difficult, even if we believe we’ve said the same thing as we always say.
Our state of mind is also likely to be affected by past interactions with the same person or a specific situation that you are in. If we’ve been able to open up and be honest with someone in the past and our confidence has been kept and an issue has been resolved, we are likely to feel able to trust them again. If every previous conversation has ended in an argument, we probably act defensively and may be quick to interpret what’s said in a negative way.
Enhancing your Interpersonal Skills
In our formative years we learnt to listen, speak and pick up on other signals such as body language. We grasped the basics of communication, yet we may not feel that we’ve really learnt how to control our thoughts, words and non-verbal communication in ways that will improve our ability to communicate.
We may get on perfectly well in the workplace, but have a tough relationship with a loved one. We might have taken on a customer facing or coaching role and feel that we could benefit from a little more confidence in dealing with difficult conversations or conflict management. We could be struggling to inspire and engage our colleagues or wanting help to build rapport in social settings. There are plenty of reasons why enhancing your interpersonal skills could have a noticeable impact on your life.
Neuro Linguistic Programming
Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) is a tried and tested technique that helps you to understand how we think and speak. It allows you to manage your response by taking control of your thought process and the words you use. An NLP course could help you to disagree in a constructive way, where the opinions of both parties are respected. It could help you to build rapport and get the best outcome from any exchange. Essentially it helps you to gain confidence and skills in communication.
The techniques can be practiced in conversations with friends, family, patients, colleagues, mentees and even strangers, until they become a part of your everyday exchanges. If you feel you could benefit from the learning that can be gained on NLP courses, Amersham based Cognisant Training offers regular programmes in South Bucks.