#Askingforafriend: Why is communication so complicated?

By Kristin Wyse
GCU Office of Student Care
#Askingforafriend

Why is communication so easy at times and so difficult at other times? We can feel connected with others when it goes well and experience such disconnect when we aren’t understood.

But all of us want to be heard, understood and valued by others despite all of our messiness. Is that too much to ask? Absolutely not!

One of the first steps toward positive communication is connecting with ourselves so we can better express “us” to others. Here are four ways to do that:

Emotions

Emotions are tricky things. We can feel many different, and even conflicting, emotions all at once.

Ever felt hurt, angry, sad and shameful all at the same time? Yeah, me too!

The more that we can identify our emotions, the more we can know that every emotion that we experience is OUR experience. Not anyone else’s.

And because of this, our emotions will always be TRUE and VALID for us. Don’t ever let anyone tell you, including yourself, how you should feel. Honor each emotion, knowing that every emotion has a positive and negative side. We are sad and hurt because the relationship matters to us and we care about them.

Thoughts

Thoughts occur so quickly, it can be difficult to pin them down. But we need to identify each one because our thoughts are NOT ALWAYS TRUE. They have to be assessed for truth and accuracy.

That means we need to assess them according to God’s truth and clarify if others are thinking the same thing. Otherwise, they become assumptions that we are responding to, not truth.

Needs

We respond positively when our needs are being MET, not so much when we have needs going UNMET.

Rarely do we take the time to understand what we are needing and what it would look like to get that need met. Instead, we tend to assume that others just know what needs we have.

Remember, none of us mindread well! We will always have to EXPLICITLY EXPRESS our needs to others for them to be met.

Behaviors

We have many responses and behaviors, some positive and some negative, in response to our emotions, thoughts and needs. The key is knowing whether we tend to either WITHDRAW from others or PURSUE others when we feel disconnected.

We also want to be responding to TRUTH, not assumptions that we are making about what others may be thinking, feeling, needing or behaving themselves.

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Thankfully, there is someone who always hears and understands us even better than ourselves and is available 24/7. In the process of connecting and communicating with God, we learn more about Him and ourselves.

We are always evolving, growing, learning, making mistakes and changing. As a result, we will need to continually connect and assess ourselves in order to communicate well with others. Remember that we are each uniquely designed by God, so have fun getting to know you!

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Bible Verse

"(Jesus) was handed over to you by God's set purpose and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put Him to death by nailing Him to the cross." (Acts 2:23)

To Read More: www.verseoftheday.com/