Failing into Healthy Communication Habits

Recently we did a webinar with our friends over at Fishhook.us. They are an amazing business in our community that we love to collaborate with. Please visit their website to find our more about them. In the meantime, enjoy this post written for us by them. Thank you, Fishhook! Failing into Healthy Habits - The Importance of Good Communication

Fails happen. Cooking fails, laundry fails, walking down stairs fails … parenting fails, spouse fails, friend and co-worker fails. The latter set, of course, feel more important. It’s hard when we fail, or are failed by people we care for and respect. These kinds of fails can be hard to even talk about. Putting salt instead of sugar into your chocolate chip cookies is one thing, but having to sit down and face a hard conversation with your spouse or your child about what went wrong and how to fix it is a very different kind of experience.

Recently, we presented on the importance of having healthy conversations after an event fail in the workplace. We gave our audience a “Healthy Conversations Quiz” in order to help them assess how well they were communicating within their staff. And while this was specifically designed to use in a workplace situation, we’ve adapted some of the material to help provide a few key ways you can begin having intentional, healthy conversations with those around you, whether you’re at work or at home.

Stay on Task

If you’re having a conversation about a specific situation or topic, make sure your conversation sticks with that situation or topic. Sometimes, it can be tempting to vent and veer off into different territory. Unless there is a very clearly connected series of actions or events that should be included, stick to the subject at hand.

Skip unproductive complaining

If your ultimate goal is to assess a problem and seek a solution, complaining just gets in the way. Often complaining happens because we feel hurt or defensive and want to make that known, but the truth is that it usually hinders clear and honest communication.

Have the courage to say hard things when necessary.

As the saying goes, “the truth hurts.” Sometimes saying the hard thing is the only way to really convey the truth of a situation. But, always make sure there is purpose and pure intention behind it. The key words here are “when necessary.” Saying hard things can be a part of developing  deeper relationships and better communication. Avoid using hard truth as a weapon for winning a fight.

Celebrate the wins!

Always make sure to acknowledge the things that went right! Healthy conversations are not always hard conversations. Sometimes it’s as simple as saying, “Wow, this was a win! Great job!” and then asking, “How can we carry the things that went right in that situation into other areas?”

Operate in a healthy cycle of addressing challenges and making improvements.

Change-related conversations should be followed by actions. Make sure you follow up later on … talk about the wins and then address the next steps or remaining challenges.

Good communications skills are so valuable in all of our relationships - with friends, co-workers, spouses, children and extended family members. Beyond just “communicating” with one another, it’s important that we make sure we are having healthy conversations in all of these settings. These conversations can serve to strengthen the foundation of our relationships so they become places of mutual trust and personal growth.

To learn more about fishhook and how they can help your business or church visit  https://www.fishhook.us To listen to the webinar Worship Where You Work visit https://www.fishhook.us/september-2015-webinar