When you first look at social health it may be somewhat challenging and overwhelming to recognize and how it fits within everyday living. How developing Social Skills benefits your Physical and Emotional Health. Today more than ever social skills are of vital importance to your health both mentally and physically, happiness and vitality. So, what are social skills, why are they so important and how do you achieve them.
What are Social Skills?
Social skills are the skills that you use to communicate and interact with each other, both verbally and non-verbally, through gestures, body language and your personal appearance. Human beings are sociable creatures and to date you would have developed many ways to communicate your messages, thoughts and feeling with others. How you messages, thoughts and feelings are conveyed is very dependant on your body language, your tone of voice and your mannerism. It has been found that people whom have learnt a wide range of social skills, have been exposed to many and varied experiences throughout their life. To enable their success throughout these experiences they have taken it upon themselves to improve and learn effective ways to participate and communicate socially.
Developing Positive Social skills is about being aware of how you communicate with others. The messages you send, how you communicate both verbally and non-verbally. An important step to improve your Skills begins by becoming consciously aware of your Communication both verbally and non-verbally. Developing improvements with how to communicate more efficiently will improve the effectiveness of your communication helping you to understand other people better and for them to understand you. Like everything in life it takes time, patience, practice and bringing your thought processes into the conscious so as to bring about positive and improved changes.
Social skills are of vital importance for establishing long term friendships, building positive relationships with family and friends. It will help with improving areas of your work or career giving you better opportunities for advancement and career satisfaction.
Benefits of Developing Positive Social Skills
- Builds loyalty and devotion giving you a sense of balance, helping with your self-esteem and confidence by strengthening your relationship with people whom you feel connected.
- Building positive social skills will give you a greater sense of happiness, reduces the effects of stress and anxiety by having well trusted people whom you can confide in.
- Developing communication skills is a major part of developing positive social skills. The lesson to be learnt here is that improving your communication begins with improving your listening skills. Relaying back to someone what they have spoken to you, ensuring that you have a full understanding of what they are talking about. Listening 2-3 times more than you actually speak. This will benefit you in two ways to you will learn more about the person and also about yourself with how much you have in common. You will also have differences, understanding that this is an important part of communication and working as a team. Sharing one another’s strengths, and supporting one another’s weaknesses.
- Closer family relationships – Understanding that even as a family, each of you are different in many ways but then the same in just as many.
- Balancing kindness, peace and harmony by being Polite – By developing positive social skills you will be able to be polite but distance yourself from people whom you don’t feel a connection or that you particularly like, without creating a scene or a disturbance, I am talking about the person who is out there to just cause an argument, push some buttons, behaving in a toxic and disruptive manner. You will be able to just be polite and walk away, not adding fuel to the situation.
- Improved Career Opportunities and work environment – Most careers, work places have an involvement of people. Most work places are looking for people with certain skills, obviously not all the same but that when putting these together can work well in a team environment. Who have a positive mindset, meaning that if there is a problem as a team you communicate and work together in finding a solution.
- Higher Levels of Health, Happiness and Vitality – Improving how you communicate and present yourself with the people whom are in and come into your life will have you feeling better about yourself, happier, your health will improve, you will have increased energy and motivation.
Let’s Clarify Social Health
To clarify or recognize what is meant by social health skills. It is your ability to develop and maintain satisfying interpersonal relationships with other people. It also relates to learning the ability to blend in comfortably to different social situations. Developing the ability to behave in an appropriate manner within a variety of situations. Enjoying having positive, healthy relationships whether that be with spouses, partners, children, co-workers and friends. In developing each of these relationships needs for you to learn strong and effective communication skills. This requires having empathy and understanding for other people. Being accountable for the way in which you have acted or responded to a situation. In developing this it is vital that you learn about you. Your very own internal chatter, feelings and reactions. If you choose to allow negative, vindictive or unrational traits to take over take your behaviours. This is in contradiction to how you want to feel or behave and will therefore have a negative impact on your social relationships, thus having a negative impact on your health. When the response it negative and not monitored by you this will create undue stress. This will then threatened what could be a healthy relationship.
Reduction in Stress
The majority of stress can be managed effectively by developing positive problem solving skills, working away from the ego. To taking time to work from your heart and looking at what is the long term result that you are looking for here. Some examples of this may be a marriage that lasts a lifetime, remain employed as you really want to keep your job and you want to have people to share your life with because it makes it more meaningful.
By learning to value yourself, who you are and your individual talents. To taking care of yourself by incorporating exercise, eating a diet of fresh, whole foods, deep breathing and positive self-communication, how you talk to yourself, not making yourself better than what you are or worse than what you are. But acknowledging what you are good at, what you appreciate about yourself and that you are continually learning will help with developing positive social skills.
Three Vital Steps to Developing Positive Relationships
As a human being you are a social being. By that I mean to develop every area of your personality to become the person you were born to be. It is important for you to realize firstly that people and your relationship with people will have a huge effect on your optimal health as well as feeling successful with your life. So to develop effectively these positive relationships and a good standing with your social health, here are some simple steps for you to follow:
- A sense of giving with no direct expectation. This can be of sharing your knowledge, your skills, putting in that extra effort or energy. Understanding that in order to achieve or get the things that you want in life, it is important to give or behave how you would want that person or situation to be.
- Develop and build on your own self-esteem, self-confidence. This doesn’t always come naturally. It comes from overcoming challenges, helping others and learning new activities that you didn’t think you would be able to do. This will then lead to you becoming mentally and emotionally secure within yourself. Understanding that life isn’t perfect as is no-one else including yourself. It is about always doing and being the best you can be in any given moment. This then will support you with obtaining and maintaining healthy, positive relationships.
- Know what you want to stand for. How you would like people to see you, what you would like to mean or bring a sense of meaning into their life. This is establishing a sense of your identity. Being your true self, not pretending to be someone or something that you are not this will bring about strengthening your social bonds and bring into your life successful, satisfying relationships.
Each Relationship will be Different
Over your lifetime you will develop a myriad of varying relationships. These will all of some form of emotional involvement, also known as intimacy. So how close these relationships become will be in your hands. This will vary to how these relationships make you feel. So if you are with someone whom there is a level of acceptance, but also believes in your abilities to push you a little to doing more or becoming more. You will more than likely have a closer relationship or connection with this person. If it is someone whom you don’t necessarily feel comfortable with because of their poor interpersonal skills or they may well seem somewhat distant or even adverse to you. These people may be rude, arrogant, no real view of who you really are, then you will more than likely keep this person at a distance.
Determining the Level of Intimacy or Closeness
So determining the level of intimacy or closeness you chose to have with each relationship will become is critical to long-term social health. If you continue with relationships that are toxic either encouraging you to move away from your dreams or goals by bringing into play negative or harmful activities or actions. These are going to be not only detrimental to you achieving the things in life that you want or how you want to be. They will also have a detrimental effect on your health. It is important then when developing intimate and close relationships that these be positive with each of you believing in each other, allowing each of you to be the person you want to be without bringing harm or demise to each other.
You may well find that you will have relationships that will just be acquaintances, people you may have met but there is no real connection. You will have co-workers whom there will little to no intimacy or bond but it will be a matter of accepting this to a degree unless it becomes crucial that a co-worker is causing you considerable stress or grief then it will become necessary to bring this up in a constructive way with your employer. In the case whereby you are the employee or the boss, it may be necessary to look into this further whereby the relationship may need to come to an end for both of you. Due to not being able to come to a fair understanding of the commitment and expectations of the relationships or work that is involved.
Spouses, partners, children and other family members these relationships have varying degrees of intimacy, bonding and commitment. These relationships may go on to develop close bonds that are considered to be love. Love is an emotion that comes about by having an understanding of each person’s value, characteristics and approach to us as well as your life. Love with the most intimate person you may choose to spend your life with takes a lifetime of sharing and caring. Overcoming obstacles together, building a life despite whatever may come across your path.
Seven Steps to Establishing a Healthy Relationship
- Trust – You must be able to trust the person that they will be there: Reliable: They will be honest with you in matters that concern you both, no matter what: To have faith in each other that you will both do your Best: To maintain a healthy and positive relationship.
- Compassion – Taking into consideration the physical and emotional well-being of each person within the relationship.
- Respect – for each of you, that you are individual people with individual purposes in life. Therefore you will be different in your approach and the things you do. But your values and respect for life and the world around you are similar. Respect each other’s sacrifices that are made to bring about positive outcomes with the relationship – such as time, effort, money, caring and that each of you have different skills to bring to the relationship. These will always be changing as life takes its course.
- Acceptance – Changing someone else is not within your realm. What does happen over the course of time by establishing positive habits, committing to being the best you, you can be will bring about positive changes within the people in your life. So prior to establishing a long term intimate relationship my key advice is to ensure to choose someone with values and habits that you hold true to your heart. Also that you like the characteristics within that person.
- Reciprocity – A mutual or cooperative interchange of favours or privileges, especially the exchange of rights or privileges of each of you. This may well not necessarily appear of tit for tat the old expression. But it may well be that you don’t take one another for granted and as mentioned your skills will vary, so it will be a mutual exchange of these skills.
- Sense of Humour –It is vital to your social success, health and wellbeing to always manage to see the funny side of any event. Practice this and it will make life so much happier.
- Always Think the Best – Sometimes your mind will having you seeing the worst either in a situation or a person. Turn those thinking wheels around to always seeing the best in each person or situation until proven otherwise.
Challenges in Relationships
Relationships may be compromised for a variety of reasons. A lack of honesty or openness, unrealistic expectations and jealousy are all factors that can push relationships to an unhealthy state. For example, a spouse that expects his or her husband/ wife to do the majority of the housework without any display of appreciation may experience a low-quality relationship as a result. Being able to communicate these issues so as not to be seen complaining or in anger can bring about a happy compromise. It may well be with the housework with you both working you may decide to hire someone to clean your house, mow your lawns to take off some of the pressure. This is certainly better than allowing it to have a negative effect on your relationship. When communicating your problems ensure that you use empathy and understanding one another’s point of view then come to a happy compromise or agreement. To have a happy outcome both parties must always be ready to put into place positive changes. If for some reason this isn’t possible and the relationship becomes toxic that is either party bringing harm to themselves or the other person. It may be necessary to bring this relationship to an end. Being honest, considerate and compassionate is the healthiest way to either continue or even if necessary to bring a relationship to an end.
Learning Steps to Cope in Difficult Times will help with maintaining positive relationships with family and friends.
Always Work on Improving Your Communication skills
Communication isn’t just about learning to talk more effectively, a major component to developing great communication is developing your listening skills. This will teach you so much, becoming interested in the other person will take you away from yourself allowing you to develop a healthier and successful relationships. Both verbal and nonverbal methods of communication are important here. By having good body language not slumping, sit up or stand up straight, be present: don’t look around, fiddle with your hair, your nails or flex your muscles. Relax your body be engaged using eye contact, gesture of nodding your head in agreeance, giving feedback that you are listening and understand the conversation. Ask simple questions about life, likes, dislikes and so on. Men and Women are different when it comes to communication. Women tend to want to go over and over a subject, whilst men just want to talk about it once then put it away. Sometimes they may well not want to talk, then it is important to explain the importance and choose a more appropriate time. Maybe going out to dinner together where there are little or no disturbances. But it is always important no matter whether you are a man, woman or child to keep to the point. Not to bring up the past unless it is relevant to your current concern or situation. Don’t move too far into the future, keep it simple to what you can do now to improve the situation.
Happy, Successful Relationships are about each person working on establishing a Healthy, Positive Life whilst acknowledging and respecting one another’s differences