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Problems in communication involve problems listening, speaking, or both. Effective communication skills training can help people express themselves effectively, while minimizing negative reactions from the intended listener. This can be achieved by emphasizing the subjective nature of the speaker’s comments, expressing positives instead of negatives, and using validation to help disarm the listener and elicit empathy. Listening skills can help people truly understand the speaker, and help the speaker feel understood. This can involve active listening skills, attending, rephrasing, empathizing, validating, and inquiring.
This treatment can be helpful in numerous interpersonal situations, including family relationships, romantic partnerships, and co-worker interactions. It can be used in conjunction with treatments for anxiety and depression when ineffective interpersonal relationships are implicated.