Effective Communication: Be Mindful of Your Word Choice and Tone of Voice

Our lives have changed due to COVID-19. We have found ourselves in different, difficult, and uncertain times with our jobs, careers, families, and finances.

How we work, socialize, and live with one another has changed.

How we communicate with each other has also changed.

Limited are the face-to-face interactions with bosses, co-workers, clients, colleagues, customers, extended family members, and friends.

Increased, however, are the bonding moments with immediate family members, such as, children, husbands, wives, partners, boyfriends, girlfriends, and significant others.

The way in which we communicate with each other has become more than the type of medium we use (i.e. face-to-face, Zoom, FaceTime, Duo, Marco Polo).

The way in which we communicate with each other has also become a reminder about what we say and how we say it.

The need for adequate, respectful, and loving communication is important to have right now. The reason I say this is because in the past few months, I have noticed a shift in television commercials. More often now I see commercials about suicide prevention, mental health, domestic violence, child abuse, and stress management.

These types of commercials are a sign that people are experiencing more stress and conflict in their lives than ever before.

These types of commercials are also a sign that people are feeling stressed out to the point where they are causing harm to themselves and/or to others.

When stress heightens and we feel like we cannot take it anymore, we lose the ability to effectively communicate. Instead of honestly and directly asking for what we want and need, we lash out, call names, put down, or say nothing at all. We limit our chances of a healthy, results-oriented conversation.

Now – more than ever before – is the time to make sure we pay attention to how we communicate!

Our communication skills must be used in a healthy way to save our lives, maintain our relationships, and positively contribute to the lives of others.

During this time, we must become mindful of our word choice. Choosing our words carefully when we speak will allow us to become conscious of what we actually say. Saying the right things when we speak will allow us to maintain valued relationships with our loved ones. Using the appropriate words when we speak to ourselves will boost our self-confidence and start to eliminate some of the frustrations we feel.

During this time, we must also become mindful of our tone of voice. We have heard the saying over and over again, “It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it.” Saying the right thing – to others and ourselves – can be compromised by using the wrong tone.

A conversation with my boyfriend recently reminded me of these two lessons.

He and I were discussing an incident which had occurred a f