We are often asked, “What is communication coaching anyways”? And I get it. It sounds confusing because we technically learn how to communicate as children. The problem is that most people suck at it because the person who taught you probably wasn’t that great at it either. No shame. No blame. It just comes with the territory.
If it were up to me, I’d make communication courses mandatory yearly through elementary, middle, and high school. Here’s why: if you aren’t clear and connected to yourself, honest with your feelings and emotions, and accountable for your shortcomings, your odds of being a good communicator are as slim as winning the lotto. And I’m not saying that in an exaggerated way. You can only be good at communicating if you are crystal clear about yourself and your needs, and to be honest, most people aren’t. Communicating well is an intricate mix between personal development, connection, and empathy, and that takes work.
Communication coaching helps people improve their ability to express themselves clearly so they can get what you want most out of their life and relationships. More often than not, your communication and connection with others (or lack thereof) prevent you from getting what you want out of life. So, while communication may not sound sexy, it’s the portal to getting what you want out of life, and that, my friend, is incredibly sexy. And communication coaching can help you do that.
Why Communication Problems Persist
If you’ve ever had trouble communicating with someone, you probably know how frustrating it can be.
Often, communicating might look like this:
- Even when you try to explain yourself, you might find that the other person isn’t really listening.
- You go round and round and round with no end in sight
- You have differing views, and your opinion doesn’t seem to matter
- The person you’re talking to flies off the handle at the simplest of disagreements
- Or maybe issues aren’t ever addressed, and everything is swept under the rug
These instances can lead to misunderstandings, frustration, and anger that builds resentment and frustration over time when not addressed. When resentment and frustration are present, communicating effectively becomes exponentially more difficult.
Consequently, these small things often result in people not speaking, friendships ending, families falling apart, divorce, depression, sadness, unhappiness…and so on.
But it doesn’t have to be this way. Communication problems only persist when we don’t learn how to do it better (through communication coaching) or stop trying and give up.
The Three Steps to Effective Communication (that are crap)
Typically, we learn that effective communication requires these three things: intention, active listening, and empathy. To improve your ability to communicate effectively, many gurus profess that there are three steps you should take. First, you must understand the purpose of communication. Second, you must learn to listen. Lastly, you must express empathy.
And yes, these are all true, and we do need to do these things for communication to be effective, but there is nothing helpful in learning these three steps. It’s nothing you didn’t know before, and the “how to” part is extremely vague and subjective.
Take active listening, for example. You could have a conversation with a narcissist claiming to be doing all these things and still find yourself questioning your sanity at the end of the conversation. Because in all actuality, knowing these top three rules to communication gives you little in terms of helping you navigate through difficult conversations, which is often where we get stuck.
How to Overcome Communication Problems
If you struggle to communicate effectively with others, especially in times of conflict, the solution could be as simple as learning an effective process to express your feelings, get your needs met, and know when you need to walk away and when you need to stay in the moment.
And we teach you how to do this in our communication coaching workshops. When working with clients, we walk you through the exact process to use every day even in the most trying circumstances. The most impactful part of learning to communicate well is realizing everything you want and need in life is on the other end of good communication.
We live in an extremely lonely world, especially with social media’s hold on us. Social media has been a breeding ground for disconnection because it conveys a message of perfection and opens doors of shame and judgment that would never be possible in face-to-face conversations. It takes a conscious effort nowadays to rid ourselves of these judgments and move closer to others for the goal of connection even when things feel disconnected.
And if I’m going to be fully transparent here, I need to say this: communicating well has a direct relation to how well you are connected to yourself. So overcoming many of your communication problems has to start with you.
Connection is in our DNA. We need community and connection to thrive. Did you know that relationships are the biggest predictor of happiness? Therefore, if you struggle to find joy in life, your relationships are the first place you should look. Conversely, you’ll never have good relationships if you can’t communicate well.
Communication is the portal to connection. And connection is the portal to happiness.
That’s why you need us. That’s why we are on a mission to impact as many lives as possible. Because the more people who learn from a communication coach how to find the joy and happiness that comes from communicating well, the better place this world will be for me, for you, and our children.
The way we communicate with one another matters.
It took years for me to discover why communication was such an obsession of mine, and I finally boiled it down to this: more pain in this world is caused by communication than all acts of hatred combined. How we communicate has the power to heal and to be healed, to love or to hate, and to shame or build up. And if we aren’t in active pursuit of communicating in a way that promotes all the good we want to see in the world, it is easy to become the very things we loathe without even realizing our direct contribution to those things.
It also took me years to realize that the pain I felt when I was younger that led to my attempting suicide could all be traced back to poor communication skills. In all the ways people wanted to “fix me” through counseling and medication, I fixed myself naturally when I learned how to communicate. I wasn’t damaged. I wasn’t broken. I didn’t need medication. What I was was confused, unclear, and afraid. Once I began to break down my own self-sabotaging behaviors, I needed someone to hear, validate, and see me. (This is the same reason I’m an advocate of life coaching vs therapy). Through the process of knowing and understanding myself, feeling seen and understood, I finally learned to communicate well. And the joy it has brought to my life and the doors that have been opened have been my driving force in teaching others how to communicate and why I call myself a communication coach.