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Simple Communication

          March, 2018

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Masters Degree - Applied Psychology from Seton Hall University


Post-Masters Degree-Marriage and Family Therapy from Seton Hall University


Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist


Private Practice 

since 2008


Married 29 years


Mother of 2 young adult daughters 


Passionate about 

what I do



Communication does not have to be complicated. In fact, it can be rather simple when you understand some basic concepts. When you think of communicating with someone, do you think only of when we have to say something negative? What if we want to say something positive? Read below for some things to keep in mind so that communicating becomes a little simpler.

If you have been here since Newsletter #1 or this is your first newsletter (Newsletter #99), I thank you for your support of this information and for the wonderful feedback I have received over the years. I do this for you. I do this to share knowledge in the hopes that it touches just one of you and helps your life to be better.   I value each one of you and look forward to continuing these newsletters for many years to come. Enjoy the helpful hints on simple communication. See you next month for Newsletter #100!! Wow, can't believe there have been so many. Refer to my website to read earlier issues.

Please pass along to family and friends who may be interested in the monthly content of this newsletter. Creating a web of knowledge helps those in need.
Maryellen Dabal, MA, LMFT
305 Miron Drive 
Southlake, TX 76092
Missed previous newsletters??
Go to www.dabalmft.com.  Click on the newsletters link at the bottom of the home page. Enjoy.....
From The Positive Perspective......
Concept #1: Know who you are talking to and what your role is.
If you are talking to a child, it is important to speak with confidence and speak in their language with words they understand. If you talk to them as if they are a true adult, depending on their age, they could feel confused as to what you are communicating. If you are speaking to an equal (spouse, significant other, or friend), be sure to know that they have as much ability to express an opinion as you do. Communication in these instances can be about collaboration to get to a resolution. It can also be about expressing a need and how to work together to get that need met. You can both contribute to the solution. If someone is your superior, communication may be the place where you must take direction from someone else. Be respectful and attentive to any directions but it is OK to clarify something you do not completely understand.

Concept #2: Be concise.
Some of us are talkers and some of us are not. When trying to communicate a need or extend an invitation to be collaborative on something, attempt to use as few words as possible. Some people find it confusing if there are too many paths to follow. If someone else is not being concise, politely ask them to give you a summary of the need or to reexplain something in fewer words. You can express that what they are saying is very important and you want to be sure you understand.

Concept #3: Is it possible to over-communicate?
Yes it is, but that is not often the case. How to find the right balance of communication depends on to whom you are speaking. If someone is always on time and responds to the request immediately, you most likely do not have to check on the project multiple times. If the individual has a tough time completing what is asked and needs constant reminders, then different tactics are in order. It is polite to ask another person if you are over-communicating. Again, the explanation is that you want to be sure what is being exchanged is working for the other individual as well.

Concept #4: Something is worth saying if it is important to you.
Do not be shy about sharing something if you find it valuable. You cannot control how the other person takes the information, so don't try. It might help if you explain to the other person why something is important to you. Any additional information can help them to see your perspective better.

Concept #5: The Sandwich Effect 
When communicating to someone, start the conversation with something good to draw their attention (the 1st piece of bread on the sandwich). Once you have their attention, communicate with them what you need or what you would like to discuss that is of importance (the turkey or roast beef of the sandwich). You will have their attention because you have told them something good. No lies here though people. We need to always be truthful in communication. OK, back to the sandwich. Once you have finished discussing the issue, always end a conversation with more good. Such as thanking them for listening to you or looking forward to collaborating with them on this issue (2nd piece of bread).

Concept #6: Ask questions if you do not understand.
It is better to honestly understand than to pretend to understand because it may embarrass you sometime in the future. Be honest and direct if you are unclear. If this person is important to you, they will want to be sure you have a grasp of the conversation. Do not judge if someone does not understand what you say either. You may not have been clear on your point or they may have not been fully paying attention. Either way, the goal is clear communication.
Until next time.....look at life and your inspirations  From The Positive Perspective.

Stay well.
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I welcome feedback regarding the newsletter or questions about my practice.  I can be reached at maryellen@dabalmft.com .  I cannot, however, give advice through email. For more information on my practice please visit my website: www.dabalmft.com

I wish you well...