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David Windle

Opposite Leg Ltd


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Congruency in Communication


Long before NLP or any other system that dictates or suggests techniques for improved communication, Shakespeare had it nailed:
"Suit the action to the word, the word to the action."
Congruency is the bedrock of believability.  If you watch a performance by an actor and don’t truly believe it, it is more than likely that there is something ‘in the way’, something inhibiting the authenticity of the performance being transmitted.  This could be the physical, the vocal and any facet of either.
Without suggesting that we are all actors, or that we should act our way through communications or presentations, we would be wise to heed the words of the bard.  Congruency comes from allowing everything to work together.  It is not something we force or manipulate. However, an awareness of any arguments taking place between our body language, gesture, vocal tone, facial expression, posture and choice of words will assist the receiver in truly understanding us and our intentions.  Instead of this argument we should aim to allow all elements of the physical and vocal communication to work in harmony to support the language. 
Practice congruency.
Are you more congruent in your personal relationships than you are in your professional ones?
Be clear on intention, focus on this and then allow the rest to come.
In the body, allow stiffness and flow to balance each other.
Embody the communication.
In the voice, allow staccato or legato, a natural percussiveness or smoothness.
Let your melody support your words.
For congruency in communication, the words and actions must align.
A good place to start to improve your congruence is an introduction to Alexander Technique.  As the basis of physical training for many of the world’s leading drama schools, Alexander Technique can free your body of stress and tension and move you to a place of freedom in communication.
Guy Michaels

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David Windle


Read more from David Windle

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