Can You EAR Me Now?

Are you using your EARs?

Communicating with others has gotten easier than ever and yet…. is it good communication? I am going to weigh in with a solid “not so much.” We are more easily annoyed with miscommunications. We read ‘tone’ into texts, emails, DM’s. Good communication doesn’t matter as much as does getting a response. It’s gotten messy, very messy.


Poor communication is easily treated! You just need to use your EAR (and your ears).

Empathy. Assertiveness. Respect. = GOOD COMMUNICATION

Here’s how to do it:

1. Skillful listening (empathy)

2. Effective self-expression (assertiveness)

3. Caring (respect).


Lets review these skills.

Empathy–  Good communication involves empathy, (as opposed to sympathy, which is having pity or sorrow for another person). Whey you are being empathetic, you are listening to the other person and trying to see the world through their eyes. It involves finding some truth in what the other person is saying, even if it is criticism, seems unfair or is a point of view that is different than yours.

  • Most people don’t listen and are instead defending themselves and insisting the other person is wrong.

Assertiveness– Being assertive involves using “I feel” statements and sharing tactfully so the other person won’t feel belittled, attacked, or put down.

  • “You” statements trigger conflict. When you hide negative feelings, you may act on them aggressively rather than sharing how you feel openly.

Respect- Being respectful means you are treating others with an attitude of kindness and caring even though you may be feeling frustrated or annoyed.

  • When you treat a person in an adversarial, condescending or competitive way, it is as they are an enemy and your goal is to defeat, humiliate, or put the other person down rather than get close.


So, there you have it- how to use your EAR. Print or write it down and post somewhere you will see it often. Practice it. Use it. Notice the difference it makes. When you make a change to good communication, the other person will change theirs as well.


Schedule an appointment with me to learn more about heathy communication and/or conflict resolution skills. I am seeing people face to face in addition to teletherapy.

Love yourself, you deserve it!
Tina Gray-Siebers, MS, LPC, CCATP