Mindful communication is the act of being present and intentional in all forms of communication, including speaking and listening. This approach involves being aware of thoughts, feelings, and physical sensations in each moment and using this awareness to communicate in a non-judgmental and compassionate way.
By practicing mindful communication, you can improve your relationships with others, reduce stress and conflict, and increase your overall well-being. From mindfulness apps and internet etiquette tips to online communication courses, you can use technology to practice this important skill. So, let’s dive into how you can become a more mindful communicator.
Skills You Need to Be a Mindful Communicator
The first and easiest thing you can do to be more mindful when communicating is to begin a regular (i.e. daily) meditation practice. You can do this using one of several meditation and mindfulness apps, with popular options such as Waking Up, Calm, and Insight Timer. Each app has its own flavor and range of features that can help improve your communication skills in several ways:
- Enhance active listening: By developing concentration through meditation, you can have a more focused and present state of mind that can make you a better listener. When you’re mindful during a conversation, you’re less likely to get distracted and more likely to give the person you’re speaking with your full attention.
- Reduce stress and anxiety: Communication can be stressful, especially when it involves conflict or difficult conversations. Meditation can help you feel calmer and more centered during these situations. It can better equip you to handle challenging or emotional communication scenarios.
- Increase empathy: Mindfulness practices can help you develop empathy and emotional intelligence, which are essential components of effective communication. Meditation can also help you better understand the perspectives of others and communicate with greater sensitivity and compassion.
- Improve confidence: Confidence is a key component of effective communication. Meditation can help you develop greater self-awareness, allowing you to identify and address your own communication strengths and weaknesses.
Try using a mindfulness app to focus on your thoughts, learn to understand how you react to different situations, and prepare yourself for upcoming conversations.
Digital Learning Resources
There are several digital resources you can access to help bolster your mindful communication skill set.
The Mindful Communications YouTube channel is dedicated to helping you improve your communication skills through mindfulness. It’s a great resource for anyone looking to develop their mindful communication skills, with full-length episodes of the Mindful Communications podcasts as well as quick tips on how to be a better, more mindful communicator. Start with these videos:
- How to Speak Authentically (YouTube)
- How to Give a Great Compliment (YouTube)
- How to Have Others Understand What You’re Saying (YouTube)
Say What You Mean Book and Digital Audio
Oren Jay Sofer’s Say What You Mean book and companion guided audio (available for free on Sofer’s website) are designed to help you become a more confident, assertive, and effective communicator. Based on the principles of non-violent communication, the book and audio series cover a variety of topics, including how to express yourself clearly, how to manage conflict, and how to communicate with empathy.
Mindful Communication for Teachers Online Program
Mindful Communication for Teachers is a digital resource specifically designed for teachers. It focuses on helping educators improve their communication skills in the classroom. The program covers topics such as active listening, effective feedback, and conflict resolution. It also provides teachers with practical strategies they can use to create a more mindful and supportive learning environment.
The online program, which is offered several times throughout the year, is 6 weeks in length. It includes two live calls with teachers, videos with instruction, and multimedia resources such as guided audio and activities. There’s also an online forum where you can discuss the course content to solidify your learning.
Podcasts About Mindful Communication
Podcasts are an excellent method for consuming educational (and entertaining) content, and there are several podcasts that you should check out for guidance on mindful communication.
For example, on the Ten Percent Happier podcast hosted by Dan Harris, you can find enlivening conversations between the host and guests such as Dan Clurman and Mudita Nisker, who discuss how to speak clearly, calmly, and without alienating people.
At the same time, over on The Leadership Gap podcast, you can learn about topics such as deep listening and emotional intelligence from two podcasters interested in helping you become a better workplace leader.
Tips for Being a More Mindful Communicator
Here are some tips to become a more mindful communicator and use technology for your benefit instead of being distracted by it.
- Put down your phone during conversations: It’s all too easy to get distracted by your devices when you’re trying to have a conversation with someone. Try to put your phone away and give the person you’re speaking with your full attention. This will not only help you be more mindful in your communication, but it will also show the other person that you value their time and what they have to say.
- Practice active listening: Whether you’re having a conversation online or in person, listen to what they have to say instead of just thinking about what you’re going to say next. Ask questions, show interest, and give feedback to the person you’re speaking with. This type of active listening will help you be more present and mindful in your communication.
- Take breaks from technology: Technology can be overwhelming, and it’s important to take breaks from it to recharge and stay mindful. Try setting aside some time each day to disconnect from technology and focus on being more mindful. This can help you be more present and intentional in your communication when you do use technology.
Start Practicing Mindful Communication
Learning mindful communication can be a valuable tool for personal growth and improving relationships with others. Whether you’re looking for a self-paced course, guided mindfulness exercises, or targeted resources for educators, there is no shortage of digital resources that can help you become a more effective and mindful communicator.