Monica J. Griffith

Authentic Communication 052316

Do you sometimes struggle to get the right words out?

Here is what I am noticing: I often practice, silently – in my head, the words I want to say or the message I want to convey and usually get it ‘just right’. And then, I come face-to-face with the person I want to talk with and all those wonderful words and thoughts seem to evaporate! There is either nothing coming out of my mouth – or it is not at all what I practiced!

I find myself glossing over what I want to express, or maybe emotions get in the way and the meaning is not precisely what I intend. Sometimes, I think the other person gets in the way of what I want to communicate. You know the feeling: they look at you with ‘that look’ and you freeze – or worse, you explode! Maybe I am afraid I’ll hurt their feelings. Maybe I am afraid they will hurt mine…

Communication is tough and yet it is how we interact in this world of ours. One would think we would be experts!

Here is what I have learned – When I communicate ‘authentically’, not only is my message heard, but also I realize that I listen with genuine conscientiousness.

What does it mean – authentic communication? It is a real connection to others. It is being genuine, true, sincere, honest, frank and open. In order to BE this with others, I must first BE authentic with myself. I must clear my filters – the barriers and prejudgments of what is getting in the way.

As I am practicing what I will say to (or ask of) another person, I must do so from the place of dignity and respect; from honesty and gratitude; from innocence. I must see ‘me’ for whom I really am, authentically, and see the other person from this place as well.

The risk? Becoming open and welcoming to allow the other person into my world. Permitting myself to be seen as who I really am, in that moment – to see what is true right now.

This may mean some silence – perhaps awkward silence – as many of us are uncomfortable with this form of communication. Yet, silence in the moment of authentic communication can say so much – would you agree? Silence gives our minds a chance to ‘digest’. And, when we allow the mind to absorb from the place of dignity and respect; from honesty and gratitude and innocence, we experience the person (and message) as whole and complete.

Authenticity – it is what makes the entire communication experience flow.