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Written By: Saad Shaheed:


Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” – Stephen Covey quotes in his famous book “Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.

Over my practice as a psychologist, I have found that the most ordinary form of mistake that ruins relationships is that of communication. These mistakes in communication can appear in any type of relationship. This includes the relationship that a mental health professional has with his/her client or patient. With these mistakes, we lose the true potential of effective communication. Communication can have a healing and empowering effect on the person with whom we interact and should be practiced in that context.

DSaad ShaheedSaad Shaheed is serving as the Director of Willing Ways Lahore since July, 2015. He has been associated with Willing Ways as a researcher and as a psychologist. In 2014, he completed his MS in Clinical and Counseling Psychology, from Beaconhouse National University, Lahore.

Editor: Itrat Zahra

No matter which approach we use to help someone or improve our communication, we must remember that we have to accept their original emotion first. Only after accepting it, we are able to start a strong bond. Following are the basic mistakes that occur in our communications and disrupts our relationships.

Mistake of Approach

The first major mistake that we make with other in communication is that we are unaware of the impression we make on the other person. We have the tendency to either get too passive or too aggressive in our approach to form a bond. Inadequate eye contact, awkward silences, and not being aware of body language disturbs our communication. Our body language needs to be in our control and used according to the context in which we are present. Meeting people in their context and experience helps us connect with them on a deeper level. We have to respect how others perceive their situations first before we are able to provide them with a healthier perspective.


Mistake of Understanding

We have the tendency of responding to another person based on what we think about their situation. However, if what we think about their situation is misinterpreted, our whole communication base gets shaken and the other person is not able to connect with us. It is therefore, a wise approach that we never assume the other person’s situation. Always take your time building your perception. Wait until you hear the whole story of the other person. Empathy can be generated effectively only if are truly able to see what the other person feels. Confirmation biases can play are crucial role in distorting our perceptions. Keeping an open mind is the solution here.