My Fascination with Communication
Strap in, this one’s a ride into my soul. I realise I have not fully expressed what communication means to me, or why I’m so fascinated by it. And I am excited to do so! For me it is very simple; communication is any successful transmission of information – whether it’s between people, animals, our environment, other organisms and even machines. This information does NOT have to be verbal or even auditory, and I think that is what fascinates me most about it.
For me, there are two facets of communication. Communication between humans, and communication within our environment. I’ll begin with humans. The simple ways we speak, gesture, write and present ourselves benefits each other with knowledge and mutual understanding of our experiences. Humans LOVE to feel understood. To feel like their emotions are valid, and okay. Communication helps us share these experiences, refine our perspectives, and reconnect with other feelings.
For me, the best part about communication is that it is a two-way pursuit. As you present yourself, you are picking up on tiny cues from the other person that shape your thought process, your speech, and the direction of your conversation. I love the ways that you can shape and encourage a conversation using tools like eye-contact, smiles, a relaxed listening-face, laughter, head-nodding, and by echoing important parts of their speech back to them to show you understand.
To be proficient in communication is to be able to translate your base feelings in a clear, transparent and relatable/enticing manner. A good way to do this is to tell a story. It really helps to have a good awareness and understanding of yourself, and your needs. What are you struggling with at the moment? What do you think you are doing really well at? What kind of things make you worry? What feeling or fear is at the ROOT of a given worry? Do you know, or do you need to find out? How might you communicate with someone in order to help you understand your worries, and vice-versa?
To flip over to the environmental side, I believe communication is literally in the air. Communication happens when insects contact each other’s bodies, when the wind blows and creates waves in the ocean, it’s the green signal at a stoplight, and the loudness at which your feet thud when you walk. It happens when you raise an eyebrow while you listen, it’s in every bird call your ears tune out, it’s the way you fidget when you want to leave, and it’s the way the sun rises to signify the dawn of a new day to all its creatures. It’s the way tree roots send signals to one another when there’s a threat, and the way bacteria in the air shares its knowledge. We have so much to learn about the ways our natural world networks and tells stories.
We now even employ technology to see, move, hear, touch, say, and experience. Connection is growing denser and more abundant by the minute. Humans are fortunate to enjoy the subtle pleasures of using our bodies, language and machinery to describe the natural phenomena surrounding us and interpret it for each other.
Communication will always be an essential tool strengthening conscious connection and stimulating the development of individual and universal truth amongst humanity – a destination sought after by almost every scientific and philosophical discipline we’ve ever aspired to pursue. It has sent us on a wild course of evolution, and graced us with wisdom far older than our lifespans could ever reach. It is arguably therefore one of the most valuable skills we possess as organisms.
Communication entails the responsibility to know your words have power: and to use them boldly, wisely and courageously, with as much positive effect on others as possible.
To finish, I leave you with the following piece. I feels sums up my definitions, feelings and beliefs on communication quite perfectly: