This week is all about communications. How we talk to each other is really the foundation for relationships. think of it, you don't want to see or be close to someone that criticizes you and puts you down... So how we talk to children and those developing is important too. It reflects a lot about the speaker but also conveys heavy important messages that go far beyond their words.
The basics of communicating is simple.. speaker - listener. speaker tries to convey their message in a way that helps to get it across; listener tries to understand what the speaker is trying to convey. It gets difficult because we all have reactions to what we hear and how it is said, and who is saying it (our history really comes into play ).
So learning to speak genuinely and without overtones, unspoken messages, and manipulations is critical. After all if I say "I really care about you" in a harsh tone are you going to believe it? if you do then we have more to talk about then just my tone of voice. We believe non-verbal messages much more than verbal. So becoming aware of what we are doing is also important (see activities in the reading for part about this). Learning to hear each other without expecting negative experiences also is a key part of it. If we catch this type of expectation going on then we have to do something to alter it before anything we say can be communicated.
So let's talk about talking this week.. and take some time to observe yourself and see how you are doing it.