Is Your House a Pressure Cooker? How To Fight Less And Reduce Family Conflicts

Are you more polite/considerate/presentable/tidier/ in public or at home with family?  

Amazingly, many people treat complete strangers better than they treat their own spouse or children. We blurt out hurtful comments, leave a mess, expect 24/7 help and behave in ways we wouldn’t dare with people who care less about us and people who should matter less than those closest to us.  As important as it is to treat others well, it’s even more important to treat those we love better.

Home should be a safe harbor, but unless you live alone, you’ll inevitably get into arguments at home.  The trick is to learn how to reduce family conflicts, negotiate effectively and show appreciation frequently.  We decide what goals, relationships or vices we nurture with how we spend our time each day.  I discussed self-discipline and time-management in the blog post, Wield the Power of Discipline Towards Your Goal. Make sure you invest enough time creating shared experiences with your spouse and children to deepen your family ties.

Boost Communication Skills To Reduce Conflicts

Most family conflicts are rooted in miscommunication, so developing communication skills and finding out how each member of your family prefers to communicate help to improve your family dynamics. (Plus taking personality quizzes is fun!)  During difficult conversations, a good tip is to respond by repeating what the other person has said so there’s no doubt about their intended meaning. This simple step improves communication in multiple ways.  First, no two people have exactly the same life experiences and perspectives, and no matter how well you know your spouse/parent/child, don’t assume you know exactly how they feel and communicate 100% of the time.  The second benefit of this communication tip lies in our need to connect.   People often communicate to get recognition and acceptance of how they feel, and the simple act of repeating what they have said is the best support you can offer.

How Do You Feel Appreciated?

Let's find out your love language!

Eyeroll, contemptuous glance, dismissive smirk…  Our non-verbal communication matters just as much as what we say.  So be mindful of your tone of voice, facial expressions and body language.  When you speak in a kind tone, arguments are less likely to start. You can further improve your family’s communication by letting everyone know that all feelings are ok but not all behaviors are.  Feelings are just one of our senses just like sight and touch.  Not much good comes from trying to dispute how another person feels.  But we do have a choice in how we think, express and do about our emotions.  Make your home a safe harbor for your entire family by keeping communication open and building trust.  When in doubt, give each the benefit of the doubt.

How to Negotiate Well

Why do fights/conflicts/arguments occur? They happen when someone’s needs aren’t being met.  So when arguments do arise, focus on the purpose and root cause of the arguments.  You can boost communications skills to avoid miscommunication and conflicts.

  1. Clear Request  

Household arguments often escalate and go on and on because there are no clear requests. One person dishes out one complaint after another while the person on the receiving end gets defensive and responds with insults or attacks.  When you complain, make sure to let the other person know what you want.  Here is a system that you may want to try:

It bugs me when you ____________________.  I wish you would ________________________.

  1. Time out! 

Take a step back if it becomes a shouting match with one insult after another. Ask for five minutes to think about what’s already been said.   When people disagree, it’s easy to turn confrontational, competitive and escalate trivial disagreements into power struggles.  A short time out can remind you that you love each other not enemies to conquer.  Agree as a household that it’s ok to have a time out during arguments. 

Bravely Apologize.  Weak communicators sometimes argue, insult and yell as a form of reaching out for help.   Remember conflicts occur only when needs are unmet. You may have said or done something unknowingly that hurt the other person through no fault of your own. Listen to the other person’s side of the story before jumping to defend yourself.  If apologies are due, be brave enough to apologize.  

Tips specific to reducing conflicts between your kids.

1.     Avoid comparing your children.  Kids are always on the lookout for any signs of unfairness so don’t give them a chance!   Be sure to let your children know how special they are. They’re individuals and should be treated that way

2.     Establish boundaries and household responsibilities. This will let them know what’s expected of them. Include rules about how they should treat one another. Let them know that hitting and name-calling are off limits in your home. Decide as a family what the consequences will be if they break the rules. 

3.     Give each child 1-on-1 attention. Sibling rivalry usually stems from perceived favoritism and trying to get more of their parent’s attention and love.

Consider taking each of your children on their own “dates.”  Children want to feel special and crave your attention.  Your dates don’t need to be extravagant.  Even a walk in the park followed by a treat will be treasured by your child when you let them know this date is JUST for them.  Invent your own special ritual. If you reinforce to each child that they’re special and that you love them, they’ll have less reason for arguing and more reason to dwell in the family’s love.

In the long run, we each have the power to decide whether or not to argue. If you decide that you won’t be dragged into an argument, the argument will often end of its own accord.

Wield The Power of Discipline Toward Your Dreams

Have you ever envied anyone who has better grades, bigger house, more recognition, popularity.. and grumbled “Why did she get xxx and not me?!?*#”  It’s easy to look at people who seem to have it all–beauty, fitness, great career, wealth, freedom and tell ourselves that it’s all luck.  Malcolm Gladwell wrote in his bestseller book, Outliers, that all successful people who achieved mastery in any area have devoted at least 10,000 hours to it. No exceptions.  

We live in a culture of instant gratification and overnight fame.  The youtube star that you believe to have gained fame overnight has hours of disciplined practice that people don’t see. . 10,000 seems like an insurmountable number, but when you’re consistent, a small step forward each day adds up to a lot of mileage over time.    Your life is too important to just leave it to chance. To guarantee success, harness the power of discipline. 

Free Success Fortune Telling Chart

What it takes to top the Billboard chart, win the Wimbleton, best-selling author, Nobel prize winning scientist, world renowned violinist

5 days a week 6 days a weekEveryday 
1 hour / day38.5 years (260 hours / yr)32 years(312 hours / yr)27 years(365 hours / yr)
2 hours / day19 years(520 hours / yr16 years624 hours / yr14 years730 hours/ yr
3 hours / day13 years78011 years9369 years1095
4 hours / day10 years10408 years12486.8 years1460
5 hours / day7.7 years13006.4 years15605.5 years1825

P.s. If you’re aiming for the best in your city, country, the bar would lower and you’d get to your target level of mastery sooner than what the chart below indicates.

Time is an egalitarian, limited commodity.  No matter your age, race, intelligence, wealth, we all have the same number of hours each day.  The power to steer the direction of your life is in your hands!  How do you choose to spend your time? Are the little things you do each day adding up to something positive? Do they lead you to where you want to go in life? 

With consistent action over the next 10 or 20 years, what could you accomplish? 30 minutes of extra math practice each day / 5 days per week equals 130 hours in 1 year–surely a time investment that would get you an improvement of a full letter grade in math.  Five small pieces of chocolate over the same duration is roughly 25,000 calories, or the equivalent of over 7 lbs.  4 hours in front of the TV everyday gets you to become a world class TV watcher in less than 7 years. 

Are your consistent behaviors helping or harming where you want to go in life? Be disciplined enough to make your dreams come true.  

Groundhog Day 

If you re-live today for the next 10 years, where would you end up? (It’s a classic.  Go watch it here if you haven’t seen it yet.”)

An effective way to predict your success is to honestly examine your average day and project the likely logical outcome into the future. It’s a no brainer that  if you saved just a small amount of money each day, you’d eventually be wealthy. If you overeat slightly each day, you are guaranteed to gain weight. Your teeth aren’t clean because you brushed them for an hour straight. They’re healthy because you brushed them for 2 minutes twice a day for 365 days straight.

For one week, carefully record how you spend your time in 30-minute increments everyday.  Consider where your daily habits and behaviors are leading you academically,  financially, socially, spiritually, and physically. What logical conclusions do your daily activities predict?

3 Steps for More Self-Discipline

1.   Set success on auto-pilot.     Good habits decrease resistance and help make self-discipline easier because research shows that people have a finite amount of self-discipline .  By building good habits, you’re creating helpful, positive actions that are automatic and don’t require you to use up your reserve of self-discipline. Relying on discipline day after day is an uphill battle. While discipline can grow with effort and the right training, having helpful habits is more effective and much less painful.  To make sure habits stick, Tie them to environmental triggers or something you already do to encourage consistency.  I discussed habits more in this article.

2. Just do it.  The greatest barrier to self-discipline is procrastination. Each day, you have the choice to get closer to making your dreams come true.  Each day lost is lost forever, so if it’s the right thing to do, then isn’t it worth doing right now?

3.  Have reasonable expectations. When your time horizon is unrealistic or when you ask too much of yourself too soon, disappointment and frustration are sure to follow, and  you doom yourself to give up. Be positive and enthusiastic, but be reasonable. Focus on your trajectory and aim for regular and consistent improvement. Perfection isn’t required.

Whatever your dreams are, you need self-discipline to make it happen.  What you do once in a while doesn’t impact your life significantly. Rather, it’s what you do consistently with discipline.  All of curaFUN’s social emotional training programs build up children’s self-discipline with consistent practice of critical skills in dynamic, gamified formats. Click here to find a program appropriate for your child today with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Are You Taking Care of this Important Relationship?

What comes to mind when you hear the word “relationship?”

For most people, this word brings up images of couples, families, or friends interacting with each other. That makes sense, considering relationships with other people are a big, and extremely important part of our lives and our well-being. However, I believe that there is one relationship that is quite important for our well-being but doesn’t get as much attention: our relationships with ourselves.

You Can’t Get Away from Yourself

Think about this for a moment: would you say you treat yourself with the same love, kindness, and respect as you treat a close friend or a loved one in your life? According to researcher Kristin Neff, most people tend to be much harder on themselves than they are on others.

Friends together
Imagine being with a friend

The challenge we often run into is this: while it is easier to select the kind of people we want to spend time with and avoid the ones we don’t, we are bound to ourselves. So, while you may choose to spend time with a friend who is kind and fun and avoid the one who can’t stop complaining about everything that’s wrong with her life, you can’t get out of spending time with yourself. Now, even though you may temporarily escape yourself by binge-watching Netflix or drowning yourself in alcohol or something else, deep down, you know that that’s not the best way to live. It might serve you better to learn how to be a better friend to yourself, to become someone you don’t need to escape from.

How to Be a Better Friend to Yourself

How might you do that? While there are numerous ways to develop a healthier relationship with yourself, one simple way is to follow what Dr. John Gottman refers to as a magic ratio that makes love last. In his extensive research on romantic relationships, Dr. Gottman has found that a 5:1 ratio between positive and negative interactions between couples is a strong predictor of whether the couple will stay together. In other words, couples end up staying together if, on an ongoing basis, for each argument or negative interaction they have with each other, they have at least 5 pleasant or positive interactions.

Now reflect on this for your own relationship with yourself. What is the ratio of positive to negative interactions you have with yourself?

If the ratio is low, consider this. You cannot divorce yourself, so that’s like being stuck in an unhappy marriage for the rest of your life. To make matters worse, unlike in a marriage, in this case, you have no one to blame but yourself!

Increasing Positive Interactions with Yourself

Love Yourself paving stone
Message in the paving stone

Let’s say you didn’t want to end up that way. What you may want to do is start increasing the number of positive interactions you have with yourself on a regular basis. This can be accomplished in various ways – you could think about the specific actions you take to show someone else that you care about them, and turn some of those inward. For example, if you express your love by spending quality time with someone, you could set aside some dedicated time for self-care.

In addition to what you come up with on your own, here are three of my favorite evidence-based ways that can help you increase the number of positive interactions you have with yourself, thereby nurturing your relationship with yourself:

  1. Say “I love you!” to yourself everyday. If you’re squirming at the thought of doing this, you’re definitely not alone. I came across this practice through a TEDx talk by Shauna Shapiro, and when I started trying it out, it felt extremely awkward and uncomfortable. With practice, though, it started feeling more natural. I find it to be one of the simplest, quickest to have a positive interaction with myself.
  2. It’s easier to have positive interactions when we’re in a good mood. However, there are times when we really need some love and compassion because we’re experiencing distress. Researcher Kristin Neff offers a variety of tools to practice self-compassion, and taking a self-compassion break is a simple and effective strategy. Neff recommends a 3-step process to take such a break:
    • Acknowledge that you’re experiencing suffering (“This is a moment of suffering.”)
    • Remind yourself that everyone experiences suffering (“Suffering is a part of life.”)
    • Remind yourself to be kind to yourself, saying something that would bring you comfort (“May I learn to accept myself as I am.”)
  3. Having a positive interaction doesn’t mean that you must experience positive emotions all the time. Have you had an experience when someone sat with you in your discomfort, not trying to cheer you up or change anything but simply letting you feel what you needed to feel, before you were ready to move on? Chances are, such experiences enriched your relationship with that person. You can do the same for yourself. Researcher Susan David talks about the skill of emotional agility, which enables you to take a flexible approach, accepting and learning from all your emotions rather than trying to avoid the challenging ones. This is a more complex skill to develop compared to the other two, but it can truly transform your relationship with yourself.

As you may have realized, there is a range of activities you can do in order to nurture your relationship with yourself keeping a simple ratio of 5:1 as a guiding principle. If you believe there is room for improvement in the way you treat yourself, I encourage you to start with something, whether big or small, that helps you treat yourself with a little more love, kindness, and acceptance.


This article first appeared on Positive Psychology News

Yashi Srivastava, MAPP ’16 is a coach, teacher, and writer passionate about helping people cultivate inner peace. While Yashi began her career teaching computer programming, her life-long fascination with the human mind led her to become a people development professional. You can learn more about Yashi on her website and on LinkedIn.

References:

Benson, K. (2017, October). The magic relationship ratio, according to science.

David, S. (2017, November). The gift and power of emotional courage [Video file].

Neff, K. (2013, February). The space between self-esteem and self compassion [Video file].

Neff, K. (n.d.). Self-compassion break.

Shapiro, S. (2017, September). The power of mindfulness: What you practice grows stronger [Video file].

Image Credits

Photo by Joseph Pearson on Unsplash

Photo by Michelle Bonkosky on Unsplash

Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

Thinking Outside of the Box Yourself for a Happier Life

Much of our own unhappiness and the world’s problems disappears when we can put ourselves in someone else’s shoes. Everyone has a different story, and understanding their perspectives not only make you feel better about any situations (even upsetting ones) but improve your overall happiness.

Babies start out in life completely egocentric, only aware of and concerned with their own needs, and slowly realize that the world does not only revolve around themselves. Children need empathy to cooperate, lead, communicate and make friends well.  The Oxford dictionary defines empathy as “the ability to share someone else’s feelings or experiences by imagining what it would be like to be in that person’s situation.”  In other words, empathy starts with perspective-taking. 

How do you teach perspective-taking?

For a skill to truly become an inner strength, it needs to be frequently reinforced, and what better way than planning skill practice into the fun things you already do.  A popular dinner-time conversation topic in our family is plot and character analysis. We discuss movie/book characters’ motivations, personality traits and reasoning and how these factors influence their actions.  We also try to problem solve for these characters, turning any story into a choose-your-own-ending book.  This is a fun and effective exercise for teaching perspectives and growth mindset.  By discussing children’s movies, cartoons, games this way, parents and teachers help build empathy and make the connection between our thoughts, actions, and outcome.

Below are some conversation starters for you.

1.  Who was your favorite character in this movie? And why?

2.  What problems did your favorite character face?  Can you think of any other ways to resolve these conflicts?

3.  Which character did you dislike in this story? Why?

4.  What was the villain’s journey?  How would you rewind and change the story for the villain to take a better path?

You may also use fractured fairy tales like this one, The True Story of the Three Little Pigs, where traditional fairy tales take on a different spin or alternate ending.  Fractured fairy tales and fan fictions are great ways to get children interested in writing, reading, exploring their creativity, and practicing perspective-taking.

Parents, media and employers frequently complain about this generation being entitled, lazy and sheltered.  Compared to those who grew up during the Great Depression, when people lived through wearing flour sacks and conserving food, today’s youth haven’t experienced such perspective to practice frugality. People’s actions reflect their thoughts and worldview, so any growth in perspective-taking will help them gain resiliency and adaptability. 

When we learn to take different perspectives, we gain in gratitude, contentment and tolerance. Multiple studies highlight the dramatic difference gratitude makes in people’s life satisfaction AND outcome.  The human brain prioritizes negative experiences over positive ones, so we need to compensate by deliberately reflecting on our successes and good moments. Researchers found that showing gratitude (whether it’s for a person, situation, or physical object) boosts our happiness, sociability and wellbeing by as much as 25%.

Writing about positive experiences and gratitude benefits both the readers and authors, and it is one of the reasons why curaFUN is hosting the Shining Moments Writing Contest.  I highly encourage you to check out what our community has shared here, submit an entry yourself or comment and cheer on those who posted. 

Keeping a gratitude journal and handwriting thank you notes are two more practical ideas for adding more positivity and taking different perspectives.  Most of us acknowledge the benefits of journaling and gratitude, but we haven’t made them a habit and natural part of our daily routine.  Instead of pinterest-share worthy, long gratitude journals, easily-achieved short gratitude practices may work better for you to jumpstart a good new habit. Remember, consistency is key when it comes to making it happen, getting thins done. Below is a quick prompt that my family use every day before bedtime when we go around sharing our answers to The Daily 3, adults included.

Captivating fractured fairy tales that my family has enjoyed:

Why is it always hard to establish relationships? Know your attachment style.

You ask for a babysitter to help take care of your children, because you have something urgent that you must deal with. And then you come home after you have finished your task. What do you think the caregiver will say about your child? It would be “he/she’s such a nice kid, he/she stopped crying after I tried to comfort him/her instantly.” Or do you think it would be “he/she couldn’t stop crying, and his/her emotions were really intense.” What about the reaction of the child when he/she sees you come back? He/she smiled and rushed forward to hug you, or was throwing tantrum at you, thinking, “Mom, you have gone for so long, don’t you want me?” Or he/she just played with his/her toys quietly, with nearly no reaction at all?

Those reactions can give you a glimpse of the child’s attachment style. Different attachment styles in children were summarized by scholar Mary Ainsworth with her the stranger situation test. And this attachment theory is a groundbreaking argument put forward by her teacher, John Bowlby, a British psychiatrist. He believed that this is a system that is inherent in humans, and the attachment can enable babies to survive safely. Bowlby discovered during World War II that many children became orphans because of the loss of their families. They have been properly taken care of, and they were provided with food, clothing, and safety, but they still died easily. He observed that this was due to the fact that these children did not establish a secure attachment. Having a secure attachment relationship can make a child feel at ease, because the child knows that there is a secure base (that is, a caregiver who can take care of him/her) and that secure base can protect himself/herself. The child knows he/she can be comforted as long as he/she returns to this secure base after he /she is frightened, or he/she feels uncomfortable. And because of this the child has better emotional regulation ability, and he/she is more confident in himself, and can bravely explore the unknown. Overall, the child will have better physical and mental health.

There are four types of attachment styles, namely, secure attachment, anxious-ambivalent attachment ,dismissive-avoidant attachment , and disorganized attachment.

People with secure attachment can feel comfortable with their relationships with others around them, can easily get close to others without too much worry, and have better adaptability when they are faced with all kind of things. Children with secure attachment grow up with their parents being keenly aware of and respond to their own needs. This is not to say that parents must be with the child 24/7 to check if he/she is hungry or cold, but they must be able to properly observe what kind of care the child needs. As long as the child can be in a safe and good-quality childcare center, coupled with the keen ability of the parents, it is easy to raise a child with secure attachment. Whether one of the parents is a full-time parent, or whether the child receives daycare care is not a factor that affects if the child will have a secure attachment. It is the sensitive care of the parents that determines if the child will be secure attachment style.

People with avoidant attachment are less interested in establishing close relationships. Because when they were babies, their parents may be negligent or simply not sure how to deal with his/her needs. The children may have tried to express their needs to their children many times, but they were ignored, and this made them develop the idea that “I am on my own and it’s better that I count on no one else but me.” The children will be bizarrely independent. This does not mean that they do not have negative feelings, they will try not to acknowledge their feelings.

People with anxious attachments desire to establish intimacy, but they feel scared when establishing relationships, worrying that there will be something that’s gonna jeopardize the relationship, and it is easy for them to get upset. Compared with the previous secure attachment and avoidant attachment, such people are prone to experience emotional ups and downs, and it is especially hard for them to adjust. If they encounter setbacks, it will take a particularly long time to recover. When they were young, they would choose to cry even more hard when they discovered that their parents hadn’t noticed their needs.

People with disorganized attachment have the characteristics of avoidant attachment style and anxiety attachment style, and they often feel worried, afraid, and fearful of building relationships with others. Because when they were young, they may feel that their parents give them love, but they are also who cause them pain at the same time. This usually happens to abused children.

Researchers believe that genes are not the main reason that determines the attachment style, it’s the interactive influence of innate and nurturing that will deeply affect the child ‘s attachment style. The attachment style will accompany a person throughout his/her life, affecting how he/she views himself, the world, and others. At the same time, there will be various sparks when getting along with people of different types of attachment styles. For example, your friends who have anxious attachment will tend to find others to complain and seek comfort when they are troubled. If you have friends with avoidant attachment, you will notice that when they encounter problems, they will like to have some space of their own.

If you are not a safe attachment style, or if you have observed that your child is not a secure attachment style, then there is no need to worry, let alone self-blame, because that does not mean that you can only be an insecure attachment style for the rest of your life. Because the attachment style can be changed through the process of self-awareness, psychological counseling, etc. We can understand ourselves better and try to pay attention to the moment when we make some behaviors and stop to think about what is happening now. You can also try to use the tips provided by child psychologists for getting along with your children to create a better parent-child relationship. Let us work together with your children, and learn to become secure attachment style.

Reference:

依戀效應 為什麼我們總是在愛中受傷 在人際關係中受挫? 皮特·羅文海姆著,廖綉玉翻

Reasons why your communication’s not working

In recent years, there has been a cat translation app that allows pet owners to try to understand what their cat wants to express. This app was created by the engineer who designed Alexa. It allows the owner to record the cat’s meowing sounds, and then the program will start to match the cat’s voice with possible meanings through a process quite similar to trial and error learning method. If the cat owner frequently uses the app, the app will work more accurately.

As social animals, we would want to know what’s on our furry friends ’mind. This is not surprising. What’s not surprising is that when we are with our parents, siblings, spouses, children, neighbors, colleagues, passers-by, etc., we have probably asked ourselves countless times every day “What is he/she thinking about?”. And this question is even more difficult to answer than the question “What do you want for dinner today?” Because this is a problem stemming from communication.

Just like we hope to learn and understand the cat’s language and thus we need the cat translation program, we also need to put effort onto understanding human’s communication. Now let’s use the psychologist’s point of view to see what is involved in people’s communication, and why we still feel that communication is very difficult even we talk every day.

Communication is an interactive process involving more than two individuals. For example, it could be between two friends who text each other on social media (such as line, wechat, messenger), or a family in a tourist attraction that is overcrowded during the Chinese New Year, they must raise their voices so that they can talk clearly.

Let’s analyze the process of communication with who, what, when, where, how. In the process of communication, who refers to the person participating in the conversation, and what refers to the message (the thing you want to express). When refers to the timing; where refers to the place that it happened, it could be a specific place and situation. How refer to all kinds of things that affect communication, including noises from the external environment, and things bothering an individual internally like emotions, annoyances that affect a person can concentrate on the conversation. Therefore, communication is not just about people and the message that you want to convey. There are various factors involved.

I personally think that the most problematic ones are what (messages), where (situations) and how (all kinds of noise).

Messages include verbal messages and non-verbal messages like eye contacts, facial expressions, body language, etc. So it’s not just about conveying and receiving “words”. That’s why I use emojis to express my affection and gratitude every time when I text my mom to ask her to help me prepare dinner. Leaving texts like “help me buy my lunch.” does seem like I’m demanding my mom to do me a favor.

The place where the communication happens includes the physical environment, such as noisy concerts, quiet bookstores and other places, and things like temperature and light in these environments. I still remember one time when I attended an indie band’s live music show, the girl who’s next to me had her wallet fell onto the floor from her pocket. I yelled “lady, lady! Your wallet!” for so many times and she didn’t even notice me at all because there was the loud rock and roll music playing in the stadium, and only a few narrow beams of light came from the stage and the whole stadium was too dark. Even though I was standing next to her, she couldn’t see my eyes, my expression, or hear my voice, until I patted her on the shoulder, and she noticed that I was trying so hard to let her notice me.

However, it is not just about the physical environment, it’s also about cultural and social aspects like class and hierarchy. For example, the traditional Chinese culture teaches us to respect elders, teachers and other senior figures. We are all familiar with the rule  “children have ears but no mouths(kids should always listen to the adults and obey them)”, which requires us to be obedient. This will make us unable to talk to our elders in the same way as we do to our peers.

The last tricky factor is the various noises within our communication, which include noise in the physical environment, as well as our mental stuff like worries, emotions, and other things that will make us unable to concentrate. For example, In my class, there was a group activity. When the professor had just asked us to discuss with the classmates sitting next to us, I found that my partner seemed to be zoning out. Meeting up with his hollow eyes, I asked him, “Did you hear what the teacher just said?” He replied, “I really want to go to the bathroom now.” And now you know, worries and other psychological stuff have the same affect as noises from external environment, and they all make a person unable to engage in the conversation concentratedly.

In short, we cannot engage in a deeply connected conversation- the kind of communication that looks like we are communicating, but in fact we are not really communicating, if the noises are still there, or if there are some factors that prevent us from expressing our true thoughts.

The topic we share this time is all about the various factors that affect communication. When you find that the communication between you and others are not working, you can think about these factors and they might be the reasons. We will discuss about some better communication skills next time.

References:
https://www.bbc.com/zhongwen/trad/science-55006454
人際關係與溝通 第二版 陳皎眉博士著