Communication Dialogue Exercise
Make an appointment to discuss the issue. This is important in order to give each person time to consider what they want to say and to arrange a time when both people are rested and not pushed for time due to some other commitment.
- The talker shares his or her thoughts and feelings regarding the issues, (in 1-3 short sentences at a time) and then pauses for the other person to mirror back what they have said.
- Mirroring: The listener reflects or mirrors back to the talker what they have said almost verbatim using phrases such as:
- If I’ve got you right you’re saying_________________________.
- I think I hear you saying_________________________________.
- If I understand you correctly _____________________________.
- Did I get it right?
- What did I miss?
- Is there anything else you want me to know?
- Validation: The goal is for the listener to put themselves in the shoes of the talker, by completing the following phrase:
- It makes sense when you say__________, because___________.
- Empathizing: The listener then attempts to identify what the talker is feeling. Identify feelings one word at a time: happy, sad, angry, lonely, frustrated, etc. saying:
- I imagine you’re feeling__________________________.
- Is that accurate?
- What other feelings are you experiencing?
- Mirror feelings
The listener and talker reverse roles and the listener gets a chance to share his/her thoughts and feelings. The listener is not allowed to share his/her thoughts until they have completed steps 2-4.