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12 Components of Compassionate Communication




The 12 Components of Compassionate Communication from:

Words Can Change Your Brain by Andrew Newberg, M.D. & Mark Robert Waldman

Summarized by Darlene Rose DeMaria, MA, BCET


1.) Relax (connect with your breath) prepare to communicate


2.) Stay Present (being relaxed and present opens your heart)


3.) Cultivate Inner Silence (give full attention to what is being said)


4.) Increase Positivity (generate a positive feeling for yourself and the other person)


5.) Reflect on Your Deepest Values (ask: What do I value most about this person? ~ when you respond, speak to those qualities)


6.) Access a Pleasant Memory (convey genuine kindness and a compassionate interest from your heart)


7.) Observe Nonverbal Cues (eye contact stimulates social-network circuits in the brain. This decreases the stress chemical cortisol and increases oxytocin the neurochemical empathy enhancer. Social cooperation and positive communication will also ensue)


8.) Express Appreciation (a genuine compliment enhances cooperation and trust; appreciative comments are powerful forms of affirmation)


9.) Speak Warmly (share compassion and sensitivity; drop the pitch of your voice and velocity, the listener will respond with greater trust)


10.) SPEAK SLOWLY (to deepen respectful communication; mindfully articulate one word at a time especially if speaking to a person with any form of language disability)


11.) Speak Briefly (limit your speaking to 30 seconds or less; break-up information into smaller bits; a sentence or two and wait for the person to acknowledge understanding)


12.) Last but not least Listen Deeply (stay focused on the speaker; it is a gift to be fully listened to and understood; in Compassionate Communication exchanges there is no need to interrupt, each person is given the time needed.


Somewhere within each one of us behind the everyday noise and distractions there is a calm observant self. We can exercise calmness by practicing these 12 strategies of Compassionate Communication ~ as we listen and follow our inner voice/wisdom, our connections and communications improve!

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