5 Tips to Prevent Being Mis-understood

Do you find people seem to misunderstand something you said or even a decision you made? It happens to us all. I think a lot of times I’ve been misunderstood more than usual so as I was thinking about that, I came up with some tips that might help prevent this from happening for this post:

  1. Make your intentions clear. Try not to mix words, and don’t beat around the bush, or come off sounding wishy washy. Say exactly what you mean. And, you don’t have to have a direct or “in your face” tone to get your point across. In fact, I actually don’t like directness, it turns me off.
  2. Ask if the person understands you. There’s nothing wrong with asking if the person understands what you said and to repeat it back. This way, you can discuss any problems or confusion beforehand.
  3. Watch the body language. Our words can contradict our countenance. I would rather be transparent then to say one thing while thinking another.
  4. Don’t be afraid to speak up. I had this problem all through school. Whenever I had a question, I was too afraid to raise my hand. I don’t know how I managed to get through grade school all those years. It wasn’t till I after high school that I overcame that. I find it’s much better to ask questions even if I have to ask more than once so that I totally understand.
  5. Use person to person meetings when it becomes necessary. Now, don’t get me wrong, I text and email all the time, but I have been in situations where a phone call or sit down meeting was needed. This happens when I’m working on a deadline or when a business decision needs to be made and explaining it over email won’t work. There’s still something better about hearing the person’s tone or seeing their face that provides a personal touch that technology can’t.

Not all the time can we avoid misunderstandings or miscommunications but I think following these tips can at least cut down on them. Nothing’s worse than acting on mis-information and having to go back and correct mistakes that may have been avoided.