“Special child”, ever hard this term and paused to give it a hard thought of where those who are autistic wood actually be gifted, or special? ? From food, clothing, shelter to education, family, and life itself is a challenge for autistic children, more so for their families. A diagnosis of autism changes family relationships and dynamics in ways unimaginable to people who have not gone through it. No expecting parents we see preparing for a situation of this kind. The dreams of the favorite names, the colors of the new room, sweets, celebrations, the new school, to nurture and make their new born the one the world would love too, envisioning a future that was better than their own childhood and the possible carriers that they think may lead their child to be great person someday are all shattered when the news of child’s illness is revealed. The birth of a child with a disability, or the discovery that a child has a disability, can have profound effects on the family. No parent would want his or her child to be sick, disabled, or harmed in any way. It is not an experience anyone expects to have, rather, it is a journey that is altogether, unplanned.
The confrontation with autism has a ripple effect on the entire family not just the grandparents, parents and the siblings affected but the marriage too goes through its tough moments when disagreement on handling of issues or the acceptance of the child is in spotlight.
Autism can be termed as a family epidemic, a life changer for everyone related. The child’s illness or disability touches upon many emotions that the parents experience such as shock, denial, grief, guilt, anger, confusion which are often intense and overwhelming but yet, many families are able to find the strength within themselves and among their circles of support to adapt to and handle the stress and challenges that may accompany their child’s illness or disability, thus stability does return, both to the individual and to the family where the family’s support and understanding turns out to be the ultimate solution for all issues, the times when family stands together for each other, the moments where adjusting to living with, and caring and accepting this child with special needs, is all that it takes to be a healing for the child.
About Autism
Autistic disorder is characterized if neural development characterized by impaired social interaction and communication, and by restricted and repetitive behavior. These sings all begin before a child is three years old. Parents usually notice sings in the first two years of their child’s life. The signs usually develop gradually, but some autistic children first develop more normally and then regress.
It is distinguished not by a single symptom, but by a characteristic triad of symptoms, impairments in social interaction, impairments in communication, and restricted interests and repetitive behavior. Unusual social development becomes apparent early in childhood. Autistic infants show less attention to social stimuli, smile and look at others less often, and respond less to their own name. Autistic toddlers differ more strikingly from social forms, for example, they have less eye contact and turn taking, and do not have the ability to use simple movements to express themselves, such as the deficiency to point at things.

Workplace Communication Skills

Communication works for those who work at it. Thus said John Powell.

Just because we have been talking all our lives does not mean we have good communication skills. It takes a conscious effort on the part of an individual to develop the ability to communicate. In the world of business with increased sophistication, it is imperative that people at all levels develop effective skills for communication
Our day to day business communication is an amalgamation of email and text messaging interspersed with face to face communication.
Let us acquaint ourselves with each skill

Verbal Communication Skills

  • Saying the right thing at the right time is the most important point
  • Be friendly and approachable. Be loud and clear while talking. Keep the audience engaged by interaction
  • Know your audience, use words familiar to them. Do not hesitate or fumble making them lose confidence in you
  • The audience has loads of things on their minds, their mortgages, their assignments, family issues because of which the attention span is limited. Know what are the most important points you want them to retain and take with them. Reiterate the key points. Tell them what you are going to tell them, tell them what you have to tell them, tell them what you told them. Make sure, the speaker and the listener are on the same page by summarising and asking for feedback
  • Do not lose focus of the topic of discussion. Do not let your train of thought derail. Be precise and to the point.

Non-Verbal Communication Skills

  • It enhances the expression of the message. Statistics quote that the non-verbal component constitutes 93% of the communication, wherein 38% constitutes the vocal element, your volume, pitch, tone, how you sound. 55% is the non-verbal elements, the facial expressions, the body language, the gestures, the posture and so on. Only 7% is conveyed through the words.   Though the weight of the different elements depends on the situation and the individuals involved, HOW we say is more important than WHAT we say.
  • Making eye contact is very important when interacting with someone, it signifies the gravity of the statement.
  • You also need to appear confident by maintaining the correct posture. People would be more keen on listening if you stand straight appear balanced and relaxed rather than when you slouch and appear bored.
  • A smile opens communication doors.
  • The tone of voice conveys a wealth of information from enthusiasm to disinterest

Listening Skills

  • Communication is not only about talking and presenting your ideas but also about listening and comprehending
  • Giving undivided attention to the speaker without being distracted by external stimuli or internal thought process; thus listening without distortion and incorporating the views in the communication
  • Listening shows that you have an open mind, respect and accept others’ opinions resulting in an active collaboration
  • Acknowledging, summarizing and paraphrasing by the listener promotes two-way communication
  • Asking questions affirms your engagement in a conversation and asserts clarity
  • More often than not, we are preparing our own dialog while listening to someone which results in distortion of the message received

Writing Skills

  • Written communication must be as clear and concise as possible. Long enough to cover all the important points and short enough to qualify as business communication
  • Avoid ambiguity
  • Review the writing before sending. A grammar check and spell check  would be advisable
  • Make sure to involve only the relevant people while addressing written communication
  • Follow up to ensure that the person on the other end has understood and is able to undertake the task

Follow these pointers and be a better communicator.

Happy Communicating!!

By N.S.S

14thJan, 2018