Effective communication refers to the dissemination of messages in written and verbal formats using several skills, including nonverbal communication, stress management, clarity and assertiveness, as noted by HelpGuide.org. Effective communication ultimately produces a successful exchange of information, accompanied by emotional understanding, empathy and ability to put oneself in others' shoes. This type of communication takes practice, and develops naturally in time.
Effective communication facilitates receipt and transmission of information in private and public life, including exchanges with children, spouses, bosses and coworkers. It calls upon several life skills, including good listening. Active listening requires paying full attention to others, demonstrating an understanding of the emotions involved and the meaning of words expressed orally or in writing. Good listening requires creating an equal environment, providing all participants with opportunities for speaking and expressing feelings and opinions. Avoiding interrupting others and refraining from negative comments and criticisms forms good listening habits too. Nonverbal communication, or body language, also encourages effective communication. Using open body language such as not crossing the legs, looking at other speakers and refraining from crossing arms, sends a signal of confidence and relaxation, which encourages open dialogue. Managing stress and becoming aware of emotions also influences effective communication. Calming down, agreeing to compromises and learning to recognize and manage emotions creates a friendly, encouraging atmosphere, which in turn facilitates effective communication.