In my latest book, “Teamwork: Recipe to Your Business Success”, I reference NLP (neuro-linquistic programming) as it shares communication tendencies that vary between people. They talk about the acronym VAK as the different tendency breakdowns that mean:
V for Visual,
A is for Auditory and
K is for Kinesthetic.
The idea is that if we understand how a person tends to communicate, we can best predict their behavior and give us critical information that heightens our awareness of what this person is trying to say.
Now with saying all of that, I have observed that we all have these VAK tendencies within us all but in varying degrees. It’s when we’re stressed or pressured is when we tend to focus on our “go to” tendency.
For instance, my wife, whose tendency is what we call “high visual”, when her communication center’s focus is almost all visual, and when an emergency hits (aka “stressed situation”), she goes into what we call “visual deafness”. I’m sure you know someone in your life like that, the more you raise your voice, the more they can’t hear what you’re saying. In fact, the more you increase your volume, the more the stress levels go up and, well, you got it, it’s even harder to help this person.
So what’s the solution? Well for a visual or high visual tendency person, go visual! With my wife, I’ll use signage, waving hands, bright red stop sign, anything that gets her attention. Then once I have her attention, I’ll calm her down enough to be able to speak with her in a calm and relaxed manner.
This solution is not perfect, especially if you don’t have a sign handy, but at least I understand why she isn’t responding to my voice and don’t take offense which usually means my voice would get louder and racketing up both of our stress levels. So knowing is half the battle to alleviate any hurt feelings later on.
What’s do you think your personal communication tendency is and how does that impact you with the people closest to you?