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3 easy steps to improve your communication skills

Communication plays a vital role in our lives and has an impact more than we can imagine

Communication skills play a vital role in our lives. It affects many aspects of our lives from a professional career to social behaviour and relationships. Good communication skills not only helps you in maintaining a good image and relationships but also increases the likelihood of getting what you want in life. Especially in today’s world, when we are depending heavily on sharing information, greater emphasis is paid on good communication skills, so that it becomes easier to deliver and understand information quickly and accurately. Hence, good communication skills are crucial and should not be avoided.

On the contrary, poor communication skills can have a negative impact on us. Not only this, but a poorly delivered message may result in misunderstanding, frustration and in some cases disaster. To communicate accurately is to be understood and understand.

Here are a few 3 easy tips to improve your communication skills:

1. Become an active listener

Listening is an important element of communication and is often neglected. A good listener asks questions, respect people's right to disagree, and know when to offer advice and help. Here are ways to become an active listener:

  • Let people talk: Don’t interrupt, when someone talks to you about something important or difficult, with your story even if it is relevant. Let people finish talking and then take your turn.
  • Don't judge others
  • Know that people might disagree with you
  • Ask open questions: Rather than asking ‘yes/no’ questions, use open questions that let the speaker take the discussion in the direction they want. For example: ‘Can you tell me about...?’
  • Show them you're listening: You can do so by asking questions about what they tell you, and recap what they’ve said in different words to see if you've got it right. People will trust you more if they know you're really listening to them.

2. Be an assertive communicator

Mainly there are three ways to communicate:

Aggressive communication involves speaking in a forceful and hostile manner that alienates others

Passive communication is characterised by not expressing your thoughts, feelings or wishes. This form of communication can make you feel like others are walking all over you.

Assertive communication involves clearly expressing what you think, how you feel and what you want, without demanding that you must have things your way.

When you are assertive, you can:

  • express your own thoughts, feelings, and needs
  • make reasonable requests of other people (while respecting their right to say ‘no’)
  • stand up for your own rights
  • say ‘no’ to requests from others, without feeling guilty

3.Mind your body language

The way you speak which also involves the volume and tone of your voice, physical gestures, and your facial expressions has an immense impact on how your message will be deciphered. For example, if you fold your arms in front of your chest and look stern, people are likely to feel defensive even before they’ve heard what you have to say.

On the other hand, an open posture, calm voice, and relaxed body language will help the other person feel at ease.

Remember ROLES, an acronym that might help you remember good body language:

R – Be relaxed and comfortable, and don't fidget

O – Adopt an open posture

L – Lean towards the person – not too much, but just enough to show interest

E – Maintain eye contact, without staring

S – Face the person squarely

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5 reasons why exercise will make your life better

We’ve all heard that exercise is ‘good for us’. But exactly how does that happen?

Regular exercise is crucial for teenagers as it helps in maintaining your physical and mental health both. A teenager should aim to spend at least 60 minutes of workout daily, ranging from moderate to vigorous workout. Here are 5 solid reasons why every teenager should exercise regularly.

1. Better sleep and more energy

There are plenty of researches which back-up the fact that the bond between exercising and getting sound sleep is stronger than we thought. And obviously, when you get quality sleep, you will feel even more energized the following day.

2. Reduced stress levels

Nobody understands stress better than teenagers; it could be due to relationships, studies, responsibilities, pressure, etc. Working out releases the ‘feel-good’ hormones, endorphins, in the body that will give you a natural ‘high’ and resultantly your stress levels will be reduced.

3. Stronger physical and mentally

When you work out, its not only your body that benefits but your brain as well. Exercise increases bone and muscle strength and in the long run, it will strengthen your immunity too. Exercising release a protein which is crucial for the neurons in your brain. Also, when you exercise regularly, your memory and concentration are also improved.

4. Better cardiovascular fitness

A healthy heart is a happy heart. When you exercise, your heart rate increases, which in turn increases your stamina and blood flow. Also, the body fat is burned and your body’s capacity to deliver energy and oxygen to your muscles is increased. Vigorous exercise lowers your blood pressure, keeping your heart healthy.

5. Elevates self-confidence

Exercising releases antioxidants in the body, which helps you in fighting various infections. Also, antioxidants affect the way you feel about yourself. As you grow stronger and healthier, you feel happier and confident. In short, exercising makes you feel good about yourself, and that attitude attracts people too.

If you find yourself procrastinating work out too much, then try to discover an activity that you enjoy. It could be aerobics, some sport, dancing, running, etc. This way it is more likely that you would exercise on a regular basis and continue doing so into adulthood.

If you have a story to share, Email it to us HERE.

If you have a query, Email it to us HERE.

You can also chat with the counsellor by clicking on Teentalk Expert Chat.

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