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7 Little Words That Have Incredible Meaning

7 Little Words That Have Incredible Meaning

Words, words, words: we speak them everyday. At times we just blurt them out, and other times we carefully craft our words together. How many times do we stop to think about how powerful or meaningful our words are? Here are 7 small, little — even tiny — words that have incredible meaning.

1. Joy

Joy is defined as keen pleasure or a state of happiness. This sounds simple enough, doesn’t it? I mean, everyone should have joy in their life, shouldn’t they? Yet it seems as though many people are trudging through life robotically, without pleasure, and are constantly seeking some form of happiness. Their search may take them to new places, jobs, or even relationships, and yet it is all futile. Joy springs from the inside of a person. External objects, whether they be things or people, do not bring joy. In order to experience this small word “joy”, you need to be present in the moment! When we live in the past or fret over the future, we rob ourselves of the essence of joy! When we tap into our inner joy, we are able to face each moment of our day with a changed perspective. Having joy does not mean the absence of hardship; it means being able to face obstacles with an underlying strength of inner peace and confidence. Fill your life with joy and see what a difference it makes!

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    2. Sing

    To sing is to produce melodious sounds. Music is a powerful tool. Think of how movie producers utilize music and you can understand how music stimulates all kinds of emotions within us. We all have experienced sitting on the edge of our seats because from the sound of the music we just know something big is about to happen in the movie. Although we use music predominantly as a means of entertainment, it can be so much more. Singing has been proven to lower blood pressure, stress and even to produce pain blockers in our bodies. The best part is you don’t have to be a star to sing. Just sing it out! Sing like no one is listening.

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      3. Hug

      Hug is such a small word, yet when practiced has incredible meaning! Did you know that a simple hug has the power to reduce heart rates and lower blood pressure? It has been proven through studies that hugs — not sexual relations — do more to keep marriages together. Touch is a very important, but often overlooked, part of the human makeup. You might remember the “Free Hugs” campaign that started with one person trying to practice random acts of kindness by giving hugs. This went viral on YouTube. A hug given early in the morning can change you for the whole day. Besides, a hug is the only gift you can give away and yet receive at the same time!  Pretty cool, I say! 

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        4. Free

        Free means not enslaved, or personal liberty. Such a beautiful concept! Are you free? Or are you living as though you are in slavery to something or someone? Such happiness comes when one is truly living in freedom. To be able to express your authentic self is a gift. Take this gift and live your life free. After all, it doesn’t cost you — it’s free!                                                       

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          5. Home

          Home should signify the place that you live in and are most at ease. Your home should be a haven from everyday life. There are many stresses from work and others in our lives. It is vital to have your own space filled with peace and harmony. Reflect on what your home means to you. Is this the place you go to take refuge from the world? Do you have places of beauty in your home to comfort your spirit? If not, then you need to re-examine your space. Get rid of clutter and add some warmth. Decorating your space with objects that bring you happiness will add a sense of quality to your home. As you look around your home how do you feel? Is there a sense of contentment, or do you feel ill-at-ease? Every few seasons you need to re-evaluate what possessions you have. Have you gathered so many things that they crowd out your home? Do you need to let go of objects that no longer serve you? It is true that an organized space with less clutter reduces stress. Take the time to de-clutter your home. Make it a sanctuary that is full of love and peace.

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          Anyone can build a house, but it takes relationships to build a home. How are your family dynamics? Is there respect for one another in your family? Do you take the time to nurture your family relationships? It is crucial that you spend time cultivating genuine love with the members of your family. There are many other sources that influence today’s family. A healthy relationship between members of the same family requires time spent together. Spend quality time in your homes. Create traditions that you carry out each year. Have special date nights designed for the family. Let your home be the place that laughter and joy echo through the walls.

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            6. Play

            In our task-orientated society many people have forgotten the importance of play. While it is important to work hard and complete what is necessary, it is equally important to spend time playing. What are the things you enjoy to do for recreation? Schedule routine times of just playing. You can be involved in sports or simply playing board games with your family or friends. The body and mind need times that they can relax and not focus on work or issues that are preoccupying you. Relax, let go, and learn the art of playfulness. You will be glad you did!

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              7. Love

              Love — what a word! I love your hair…I love my car…I love my life…I love this pasta dish…I LOVE YOU! As you see, the word love can be used on so many levels. The word love was originally used over 5,000 years ago to describe a deep affection for something. Although today the word may be overused in a more general way, it still holds a connection to the deepest emotion that a human can experience. Don’t hold back, tell the ones close to you that you love them! Life is way too short not to spread the love.

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                Last Updated on February 20, 2019

                How to Master Effective Communication Skills at Work and Home

                How to Master Effective Communication Skills at Work and Home

                Possessing effective communication skills is a powerful tool to have. Effective communication skills are essential to success in many aspects and areas of your life. There are a lot of jobs that require you to be a good communicator.

                Strong communication skills help you enjoy better relationships with friends and family. Being an effective communicator will give you advantages in more ways than you can imagine.

                Conversely, being poor at communicating will negatively impact your life.

                Let’s take a look at how to master effective communication skills at work and home.

                What is Effective Communication?

                Probably a good place to start is to paint a picture of what clear communication is.

                Effective communication is defined as verbal speech or other communication methods to get your point across. Sounds pretty simple, right? It does but there’s more to it than that.

                It’s really about how all of us interact and communicate in every aspect of our lives. It’s the ability to say something at the right time; to be able to get multiple people on the same page in a group decision. It’s how that one friend of yours who plans most of the activities is able to get everyone to the same place at the same time.

                Non-verbal communication is key to being effective as well. It’s the ability to have your body language say the right thing so the person you’re speaking to knows your listening.

                Effective communicators don’t react to situations with high emotion. It means not having to say something all the time in every situation. You are even being an effective communicator when you show up to pick your daughter up from the mall when you say you will. You are communicating to her that she can rely on you.

                Are You a Poor Communicator?

                Before we get too deep into how to be a master communicator, let’s take a look at your communication skills.

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                If you find yourself agreeing with a lot of these, you might want to sharpen your communication skills.

                • You’re constantly interrupting – Hey, I know, we all want to be listened to. We all want to get our point across. Most importantly, we want to be understood. If you find yourself interrupting all the time you aren’t listening enough.
                • Doing too much – Many of us are master multi-taskers. It’s not good if you are communicating with someone. When you try to do too much while speaking with someone, you aren’t paying attention to what they are saying. Lack of focus is bad.
                • Rambling – I know of several people I work with who do this constantly. I honestly dread having to speak to them. The worst part is even though a lot of words are coming out of their mouths, they really aren’t saying anything. I’m more confused after they answer my question.
                • Not being direct – Nothing wrong with emails or reports. However, if you can convey the same information quickly and directly to someone, it is much more effective. Why write a 2 paragraph email when you can pick up the phone and say the same information in 2 sentences?
                • Always talking about yourself – Everybody likes to relate things to their own experiences. It draws us together and helps us create a feeling of sharing and community. If you are always coloring someone else’s conversation with a similar situation in your life, people will think you are making everything about you. Don’t be that person!
                • Using a lot of qualifiers – Qualifiers are fine for the most part. When you use them as a crutch most of the time when you speak, it’s not helping your communication. Sometimes, we do this to makes things seem “softer”. Saying things like “I don’t want you to take this the wrong way but…” or “I know what you’re thinking but…” over and over doesn’t help you communicate.
                • Your ears don’t work – If you don’t listen well, you can’t answer someone correctly. In order to be an effective communicator, you have to understand what someone else is saying to you. If you don’t listen with purpose you will only have part of the picture.
                • Bad body language – The importance of body language is well documented. If you don’t look at someone when they are speaking, it appears that you don’t really care what’s being said. This makes people feel like you don’t care what they are saying and it’s not important to you. Other bad body language examples include always crossing your arms and not looking someone in the eyes.

                What Effective Communication Can Do For You

                Let’s take a look at how being able to effectively communicate can help you at work and in your personal relationships.

                Work

                • Better client relationships – You certainly want a great communicator to be handling your client relationships. Strong communicators represent both the client and your company is the best manner.
                • Higher employee engagement – Pretty critical if you are a leader or a manager of people. An engaging and interactive communicator in a leadership position is wonderful for employees.
                • Getting better buy in from others – This is great whether you are a manager or individual contributor. Strong communicators tend to get people moving and working towards a common goal.
                • Helps mitigate conflict – Good communicators are able to help resolve conflicts quicker and easier. This helps smooth things over and keeps projects and initiatives moving forward.
                • Builds trust – You want to be able to trust who you work for and with. Effective communicators are good at establishing and building trust between people and groups.
                • Solves problems – Problems are solved by people with the ability to communicate clearly between groups and people. Those without good communication skills many times add to the confusion of a problem because they are unable to articulate their thoughts and ideas.

                Personal relationships

                • Creates closeness – A good communicator is able to help foster a feeling of closeness with his or her partner.
                • Makes conflict okay – It’s actually better to fight with your partner from time to time instead of never fighting. We all have differences of opinion and points of view. When we don’t express these and bury it inside by not communicating, it just comes out later in a more negative form.
                • Provides support – It’s nice to know that someone cares about you and supports you. A strong communicator will ask how you’re doing and be a good sounding board for what you’re going through.
                • Expressing feelings – People who are not effective communicators tend to be not very good at expressing how they feel. This makes it tough to share your feelings with you partner.
                • Get the loving you want – In order to get the physical, mental, and emotional love you want and need, you have to be able to communicate clearly and appropriately with your spouse or partner. This is done through effective communication.
                • Eliminate mistrust, doubt, faithlessness, and insecurities – Many times these seeds are sown due to a lack of communication. If your partner rarely tells you where he or she is going, you will tend to start coming up with your own ideas. Often these aren’t true but how would you know if you aren’t told?

                Can You Improve Your Communication Skills?

                The short answer is yes, of course you can improve your communication skills.

                Improving or changing anything in your life takes some work and effort but it can be done. You have to keep in mind your starting point and your goal.

                If you are not a very good communicator now and you want to be able to give a motivating speech to a large graduating class, you’d better get working.

                On the other hand, if you get along fairly well in general but want to be able to improve your relationship with your boss or spouse by being able to master effective communication, you may just need some guidance and practice.

                Either way, if you want to master effective communication skills at both work and home, it will take a little work and effort. Doing so will benefit you in many ways.

                How to Master Effective Communication Skills

                In general mastering effective communication skills will help you at both work and home. Let’s look at how to improve verbal, written, and body language communication skills. These will help you create better relationships everywhere you go!

                1. Learn how to listen

                Speaking is only half of the communication equation. Sharpen your listening skills so you are able to process what the other person is saying. You can then respond it a well-informed manner.

                Check out these active listening guidelines to be a better listener.

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                2. Make eye contact

                Having regular eye contact with someone while you are having a conversation shows you care what they are saying. When you are looking at the floor or out the window it gives the impression that you aren’t paying attention.

                Take a look at this advice on how to make engaging eye contact.

                3. Ask questions

                When you ask someone questions, you are able to clarify what they are saying to ensure you get the whole picture. If you don’t understand it fully, ask questions.

                Do you know that it takes some skills to ask questions too? Here’s how to be good at asking questions.

                4. Watch body language

                Watch both yours and the other persons.

                We all know if you have a conversation with your arms crossed the entire time, it gives off a bad vibe. Have open, engaging body language when speaking with someone.

                On the flip side, if you see someone’s eyes glazing over while speaking to you, it’s probably a good idea to wrap it up.

                Take a look at these top 20 body language indicators to learn more.

                5. Speak confidently

                Sometimes this is easier said than done. If you communicate in an open, direct, and clear manner, it subtly shows people that you are confident in what you are saying.

                It doesn’t mean you always have to be right but delivering your thoughts with confidence helps your case.

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                These tips will help you speak more confidently.

                6. Keep it simple

                You don’t always have to be succinct in your communication. There is a lot of value in being able to tell a great story.

                That being said, there are many instances where keeping it simple is very helpful. This is especially true at work in both verbal conversations as well as written like emails.

                7. Know your audience

                You should have a certain style when communicating with your boss. Another style of communication is better with your spouse and probably others with your kids or friends.

                Know your audience to help you communicate the most effectively.

                8. Be empathetic and understanding

                There is a massive amount of power in being empathetic. And I mean that in a very positive way.

                Showing that you are empathetic and understanding to another person goes a long way to creating a great bond with that person. We all want to be understood. It’s that simple.

                Think it’s a challenge for you? These 5 tips for empathetic listening will help you.

                9. Pause before reacting

                There have been a number of times when I’ve read an email that just came in and had an instant reaction to reading it. And I don’t mean a positive reaction. My less effective ways of dealing and communicating has been to send a scathing email back.

                When I’ve communicated more appropriately, I’ve waited a while before I responded. This is true in verbal situations as well.

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                10. Over communicate

                You’d think if you tell someone something that should be the end of it, right? Done deal. Not so fast.

                I’m not recommending you tell someone the same thing 10 times in a row. With as many distractions as we all have these days, it’s generally a good idea to follow up on something you’ve communicated a few times if it’s important.

                Conclusion

                Having effective communication skills at both work and home will help you immensely.

                At work, it helps you in your career in many ways.

                Communicating well with your boss leads to a solid, symbiotic working relationship. You’re able to clearly articulate what you need to do your job well. You can share your vision and strategy with your boss and others. Good communicators are needed in management roles and leading others. Fostering an environment of effective communication leads to a great work environment.

                At home, having effective communication skills will help you achieve the type of relationship you want with your spouse.

                You are able to speak freely and openly about your feelings. You can share your wants and needs in a manner that your spouse understands. Your spouse will feel understood and supported by you which is a wonderful feeling to have. And being able to have a disagreement and work through it due to strong communication skills is amazing.

                Look at how you can master effective communication skills at work and home to help create more satisfying relationships in all phases of your life.

                More Resources About Work Communication

                Featured photo credit: NeONBRAND via unsplash.com

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