Ten Commandments of Communication

  1. Thou shalt not speak from another room. Your voice is not directed towards the listener.
  2. Thou shalt not speak with your back toward the person with a hearing problem, or their back toward you, or while looking out the car window. Keep your face out of the shadows.
  3. Thou shalt not start speaking and walk away, or while turning your head.
  4. Thou shalt not speak in competition with background noise, turn off the water or turn down or mute the radio and/or TV.
  5. Though shalt not speak before getting the listener's attention, they may be deep in thought while reading or watching TV, or while other people are talking.
  6. Thou shalt encourage people to speak one at a time while in a group.
  7. Thou shalt try to remove obstructions while speaking and keep your hands away from your face, don't try to communicate with food or gum in your mouth.
  8. Thou shalt not speak rapidly or shout, speak naturally and distinctly. NO mumbling!
  9. Thou shalt rephrase rather than repeat, it may just be one word the listener is struggling to understand. You will be amazed how much it can make a difference.

Most importantly, commandment number 10:

  1. Thou shalt HAVE A HEART! Be patient, understanding and loving when the listener appears to have difficulty understanding. Keep your temper in check, don't show frustration with your listener, they are doing the best they can. Try to walk in their moccasins, how would you feel. EMPATHY IS KEY!