Communication is very necessary in any type of relationship. When dealing with families, communication is not only the mere verbal exchange of information between members. It is the expression of respect, affection and concern. Communication doesn’t refer to the verbal alone in the family, but also physical expressions and gestures; even an affectionate look can be communicative in the family. It is through communication that the members of a family make their requests, express their love and desires, and offer pieces of advice to one another in the family. I agree with an article on prokerala.com that family communication is very much different from formal or official communication. Experts say that there are four styles of family communication: Clear and direct communication, clear and indirect communication, masked and direct communication and masked and indirect communication. Each of these styles has benefits and disadvantages; thus, it is the communicator who has to decide which style to be used according to the situations. Whatever are the styles of communication and modes of it, people agree in a point that communication is the essential instrument or bonding factor in a family life. There are many practical tips to make communication between family members more effective; here are five key points to keep your family relationship intact:
Your Presence is important: Let the communication in the family be more than just a verbal expression. Even the presence of other family members can communicate a lot. That is why it’s very important to see and be with your family members as often as possible. The presence of parents conveys the messages of safety, love and concern to the kids. Similarly, the presence of spouse communicates the feeling of warmth. Use gestures of affection lavishly in the communication. Even when you scold or correct a child or spouse, holding them and talk to them in the most pleasing manner may help the messages to be accepted in the desired manner. A kiss, a hug, an appreciation, a thumps-up gesture, all can tell more than words can do.
Don’t always over exaggerate: Many people tend to exaggerate too much when they express their emotions or feelings in the family. Exaggeration is used as a mode of easing the mental tension, but it may destroy the family harmony. When you talk or express feelings, be lavish only to the limit of the tolerance of others. Frequent exaggerated talks may bore others and make them distrust your words and actions.
Be positive: Negative and sarcastic communication will destroy the warmth of family. Do not over criticize or approach everything in negative way. Certain people cling to sarcasm when they talk to others, especially with family members. This will destroy the mood of talks and others may withdraw themselves deliberately from the family communications. You can correct family members without putting them down. Positive communication is much more effective than criticisms. Creative criticism is helpful in family but always define limits to criticism. Let the communication be appreciating, encouraging, supporting and soothing.
Be gentle to your family members: Being clear, gentle and precise is the rule applicable to any communication; so is to family communication. Do not leave blanks for others to assume or interpret in family communication. If you want to say something to the children or spouse, make your point clear in the most pleasing way. Do not beat around the bush and make others unsure of the messages you intended to pass. Being calm and gentle when you communicate is helpful to invite the attention and action of others. Angry expressions or thoughtless words may be taken lightly, also may not yield the expected results.
Keep communication line open: Communication should not be like a timetabled ritual at home. Find opportunity to talk to other members at home every day and every time. Frequent and casual communication not only helps you to express your feelings exactly, but also encourages others to talk. Mutual communication helps people to grow in affectionate relationship with each other. When we communicate effectively, we build a relationship with our family members and generally with the people around us. We tend to break barriers that might be threatening our relationships in any way.