Chances are you know someone who is horrible at communicating. You know, the people who make one conversation feel like ten rounds in a boxing ring. Communication can be incredibly challenging. Different people may need different things from you in order to open up. If you’re feeling stuck trying to get through to anyone in your life, here are a few tips to help you effectively communicate with those around you.

Be Direct

An article written by Julia Zasso for states the following, “Sometimes when people are bad at communicating, they are also bad at listening. That means no beating around the bush in conversations; you need to say what you mean and mean what you say. This doesn’t mean being impolite or rude–you simply have to stress the purpose of your conversation without flowery language or unnecessary modifiers. The more concise you are, the less there is to misunderstand.” She makes an excellent point in terms of keeping things concise. A poor communicator will have you going around in circles until your blue in the face. Get in, state your purpose and get out as soon as you can! This is the best way to keep your sanity and friendships intact.

Don’t React 

Poor communicators tend to get defensive at unexpected times. This attitude can be difficult to navigate and it can make conversation impossible. To avoid this happening, it is important for you to enter in and remain calm throughout the entire interaction. According to Zasso’s article, “When dealing with a defensive or frustrated person, it’s important that your words and body language represent an open and honest pathway for communication. This will help relax the person you are trying to communicate with and put them off the defensive.” When you can demonstrate your willingness to listen, you’re more likely to effectively communicate with those around you.


Talk Face-to-Face

You don’t have time to mess around with interactions that are not in-person. There are too many variables that a poor communicator can use as ammunition. According to an article written by Jamie Kravitz for, “Text messaging is ripe for miscommunication,” says Dr. Klapow. “There are no tonal qualities from a person’s voice, no facial or bodily expressions to soften a point or to make it more direct. Call, use a virtual software (Skype, FaceTime), but do not do the communication via text. Talking about communication via text is poor communication.” Think about it this way: would you rather spend your time arguing about non-factors or would you rather get to the root of the problem? Practice good communication yourself by handling all interactions with difficult people face-to-face.

The world is full of poor communicators. It’s important to know how to successfully talk to them. By adopting these techniques, you’ll be able to hone your personal skills as well as model positive communication skills for the people in your life.