At certain times, we all count on defense mechanisms to obtain us through challenging circumstances. This automatic, mental reactions save us from totally feeling painful or threaten emotions. Defensive communication is one of the many prevalent, and also unfortunately destructive, species of defense mechanism that addicted individuals may use.
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Defensive communication happens once a article triggers a sense of threat, and therefore defensiveness, ~ above the component of the listener. Defensive communication involves not only the actual linguistic message, but additionally body language, tone of voice and perceived meaning and also intention together well. Together a human being becomes much more defensive, that or she i do not care less and also less able to perceive accurately the message and the engine of the speaker. Top top the other hand, supportive, non-threatening communication reduces the likelihood of distorted consciousness on the component of the listener. It results in better likelihood that the listener actually hearing the message, and also being maybe to fully understand and also evaluate it.
So just how does one engage in efficient conversation with an addict who may already feel shamed, blamed, and also easily threatened?
Don’t Evoke the hit or trip Response
Pay attention to her delivery. stop sending “condescending” linguistic or nonverbal message in the method you speak and also deliver her communication. Strive for calm, neutral language the conveys your message in a respectful manner. It is helpful to imagine the you room speaking to a coworker or boss, whereby you must manage your own emotions and also place emphasis on carrying the contents of your blog post without offending the person you room talking to, no matter how you may feel about them.
Avoid “challenge words”. These are words that imply that you space questioning or diminishing the value of the various other person’s point of view. Words prefer “however”, “but”, “although” or “instead” have the right to elicit defensiveness and also shutdown cooperation communications prior to your message has actually been processed.
Listening is key to Diffusing defensive Communications
Instead that evoking a “fight or flight” response, your best bet for achieving efficient communication and also cooperation is to it is in a great listener in the communication process. In contrast to “challenge words”, “ownership” words assist facilitate collaborative and also cooperative communication by reducing feelings of defensiveness and also perceived threat. The number one “ownership” word is “I” (vs. “you”). By utilizing “I” messages rather of “you” messages, you instantly increase the likelihood the your message will it is in heard. By stating what you room thinking and also feeling and also how that affects you, girlfriend are, the course, place the focus on you. Then the human being who would normally tend to be protective becomes much less so, because the post is not about them. Therefore, it cannot be viewed by them as threatening or condescending, or together minimizing lock in any type of way.
For instance, rather of saying, “You should stop safety money ~ above booze because we require it because that the mortgage payment,” you might say, “I to be worried. We might not have enough money to do the mortgage payment this month.” The latter message keeps the conversation going, and also if hazard can continue to it is in avoided, a solution will an ext likely be forthcoming.
Communications That cause Defensiveness
To have actually effective, productive, non-threatening communication, avoid these various other common types of defensive communication:Messages that appear to be referee or accusing: (ex: Have you been drinking today?)Messages that suggest that you wish to control or straight the actions of the listener: (Why don’t you….?) such messages are often perceived through the listener together implying the you see them to be inadequate, unwise or incompetent.Messages that show up to have ulterior motives: If a listener feels that your interaction has basic motives for your benefit, that or she will feel the the interaction is manipulative and also therefore no worth paying attention to. (Ex: Let’s skip cocktails and order dinner ideal away.)Messages the convey a feeling of superiority through the speaker: If a listener is make to feeling inferior or inadequate by any part of a message, the or she will disapprove the whole content of the message. (I know more about how this, for this reason let me provide you some tips.)
Communications that Diminish Defensiveness
Instead of the species of communications above, try the complying with strategies:Use descriptive vs. Judgmental messages: (I’d favor to hear around your day.)Speak messages in means that give the listener more sense that control: (I have a request…)Use language that conveys empathy and also respect because that the listener: (Would friend mind if us skipped cocktails and just ordered dinner?)Use interactions that suggest equality in between yourself and the listener: (Can us troubleshoot this difficulty together?)
3 steps for Creating change Using Non-Defensive Communications
When engaging in negotiations through a human who is at risk to defensive communication, the is often an overwhelming to ask for changes that girlfriend desire. Usage the following formula to minimization defensiveness and also encourage successful interaction when negotiating because that change:
Step # 1: State an Observation
Start the conversation in a non-defensive way. Stop blaming, making character assassinations, or condescending generalizations. Instead, emphasis on observations – what you view or hear.
Instead that saying: “You must have stopped at the bar after ~ work!”
Say: “I check out you are house later than usual.”
Step #2 describe Your Feelings
Follow-up your observation by telling the person how the circumstance or actions made you feel. Recognize your feelings and expand ~ above your definition of these feelings.
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Instead the saying: “I am upset with you.”
Say: “I am frustrated and feel the I have actually no affect in this matter.”
Step # 3: do a particular behavioral request
The final step in achieving adjust using non-defensive communication is to make a request about how things might be done differently in the future. By making a certain request, you space letting the other human know that you room not interested in hold grudges or complaining. Rather, you room interested in working in the direction of a constructive equipment to a usual problem.
Instead the saying: “I great you wouldn’t always leave your newspaper ~ above the kitchen table.”
Say: “Could girlfriend please eliminate the newspaper indigenous the kitchen table before dinner?”