Acknowledgement – The Key To Effective Communication

December 24, 2016
Author: KLTBrown

acknowledgement of one anotherCommunication is an important part of any relationship. Without effective communication, the relationship will not last and will not be rewarding. Verbal communication is not the only type of communication that is involved in a relationship. Communication of love, affection, sympathy, concern, and appreciation are also very important forms of communication in any relationship. The missing ingredient that makes these forms of communication effective is acknowledgement.

I ran across an example of the importance of acknowledgement when I learned how electronic systems communicate with one another. Each system uses a messaging protocol to communicate with other systems. Typically, a system will send a series of messages to the other system over a common communication bus. The sending system will then pause and await an acknowledge message from the receiving system.  The system will initiate a timer called the watchdog timer which will count the time between the message sent and the acknowledgement received.  The watchdog timer will “time out” if no acknowledge message is received in a set period of time. The sending system then flags a communication error indicating the receiving system did not receive or understand the message. At this point the sending system can either resend the message or abort the communication attempt.

In many relationships one partner may be communicating verbally, or using any other form of communication but the other partner does not provide the necessary acknowledgement. As a result,  a communication error occurs and out of frustration, the communicating partner aborts the communication effort. Early in a relationship each partner is quick to acknowledge the communication attempts of the other partner. Acknowledgements are received quickly after each communication attempt. Unfortunately, over time the acknowledgement takes longer and longer to be received. As a result,  the sending partner begins to feel the frustration of their communication attempts not being received, heard or appreciated.

Most of the time, the receiving partner is not aware that they are not sending the expected acknowledgement. They assume that the previous acknowledge message should suffice for the current message. Familiarity often causes a partner to miss the importance of acknowledging what the other partner is doing. Simple “Thanks you’s” become fewer and farther between. Acts of appreciation are no longer deemed necessary. The result is a loss of effective communication of love, affection, and appreciation.

So no matter how long you have been in your relationship, remember to acknowledge your partner’s communication attempts and  let them know you hear them, understand them, and appreciate them. Be quick to say “thank you” and realize that its your responsibility to keep the communication  lines open. Don’t let the watchdog timer “time-out” on you.

Hope it helps.




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