The ongoing physical, mental, emotional, and social changes make young people lose confidencein their own skills.Youth is a life stage where it becomes necessary to help young people strengthen their abilities sothat they can take control over their life and tackle the difficulties they face with self-confidence.In this context, it is key to work and boost the development of skills such as listening, verbal andnon-verbal expression and communication in general as a tool to enhance their ability to defineproblems, to opt in for the best solutions and to put them into practice.Through this workshop, which has been developed under the Active Progress Project, we seek togenerate a curiosity and interest in young people to get to know themselves better in the way theycommunicate, make decisions, etc.We would like those young people to know themselves better and to become aware of the factthat the greater the self-awareness the broader the range of options and possibilities that opensup for them.
SOCIAL SKILLSWhat is it about?Social skills are the behaviours that we show whenwe relate to others, while expressing our feelings,attitudes, opinions, and rights.These skills help us relate to other people and theenvironment around us.They are closely linked to the way we think and feel.They are the appropriate behaviours to achieve aparticular goal in a given situation.
But…………what are they for?Working our social skills will give us What happens if we lackconfidence and facilitate our social skills?relationship with others. -We will be limited in our communication with other peopleSocial skills will enable us to start -We will have difficulty inand sustain a conversation and will performing basic activities byprove highly useful in tackling ourselvesconflicts effectively and confidently. -We will not be able to express our feelingsIn summary, social skills will help us -And… we may enter into conflictachieve greater success in personal with friends/family as we arerelationships while always unable to resolve some situations.defending the rights of the others.
What social skills do I need? Different situations require the use of specific skills. The specificities and the degree of difficulty of each situation should be taken into account. Social skills can be divided in several groups, such as basic and complex. Basic skills are essential to gain and learn further complex and advanced skills. D. Negotiation-A. Basic social skills oriented social skills C. Feelings-related 1.- Asking for1.- Listening E. Planning-oriented B. Advanced social social skills permission2.- Starting a 2.- Sharing social skillsconversation skills 1.- Being aware of your 3.- Extending help to 1.- Taking initiatives3.- Sustaining a 1.- Asking for help own feelings others 2.- Discerning theconversation 2.- Participating 2.- Expressing your 4.- Negotiating causes of a problem4.- Asking a question 3.- Giving instructions feelings 5.- Using self-control 3.- Setting an objective5.- Thanking 4.- Following 3.- Understanding other 6.- Defending your 4.- Gathering6.- Introducing one self instructions people’s feelings personal rights information7.- Introducing one self 5.- Apologizing 4.- Confronting the 7.- Responding to 5.- Resolving problemsto other people 6.- Convincing the other person’s anger practical jokes based on their level of8.- Making a others 5.- Expressing affection 8.- Avoiding problems importancecompliment 6.-Resolving fear with people 6.- Making a decision 7.- Self-rewarding 9.- Not engaging into fights
What are we going to learn?Now, we will work three basic skills that will help us handle some aspects in our life and environmentappropriately:ASSERTIVENESS DECISION-MAKING Communication: A. Empathic B. ActiveCOMMUNICATION Group communication skills
Assertiveness ASSERTIVENESS is a social skill that entails self-assurance, in a manner that considers and respects the rights and opinions of others while also standing up for your own rights. It is about having the ability to communicate our beliefs, feeling and thoughts clearly, openly and directly. Assertiveness is self-confidence Assertiveness, same as any other other skills, is an attitude that can be learned. We are not born assertive, but we are born with the capacity to learn how to be assertive. What do we need to be assertive?
What do I need to be assertive? Self-awareness, brings us closerSocial awareness, to understanding Self-esteem,enables us to know our limitations. characterized by athat we are not It is about positive image ofalone. We live in becoming aware of the self, andsociety, we have our true needs and respect and loveduties but we also being realistic in for oneself.have rights. the objectives that we set for ourselves.
Exercise. Learning to be assertiveExercise 1Write down in your exercise book:5 things that you approve of your appearance. We all have nice things. It can be your hair, eyes, ears, hands,feet, height, smile…If you cannot find them by yourself, as a friend or a relative.5 things that you like of the way you are.It may be your friendliness, listening skills, discretion, generosity, goodness, kindness, perseverance… if nothingcomes to mind, think about the things that you like in others and consider to what extent you share thosevirtues. You are expected to elaborate this list by using the same scale that you would you to assess this traits ina loved one. It is not a problem if at the beginning, you don’t believe this 100%Go through the list and think that, if you were to meet a person with those traits, you will be definitively pleasedto meet that person.Exercise 2At the end of the day and at least for thirty days in a row, finish the following statements:“Today, I felt good with myself because...”“Today, I dis something good for me when ...”“I like myself more when ...”“I am starting to realize that I have the virtue to ...”“Even though I make a mistake, I realize that...”
DECISION-MAKINGWe all make decisions all the time, which enables us to control our life but also forces us to be responsible for ouractions.Sometimes, making decisions is not easy. We have doubts about the best choice and this may make us feel anxious. At agiven point in time, making a wrong decision can distance us from the intended objective.And you…how do you make your own decisions?- I let myself get carried away. I let the other make decisions for me- I delay my decision making as much as possible- I am an impulsive person. I do whatever passes my mind- I feel that nothing is in my hands: fate or destiny will decide for me- I consider the pros and cons of the various options that I face- I like to have information to make a decision. I search information- I listened to others’ advice. It is always good to listen to other people and to increase my options- I make decisions without consulting anyone. I am always clear about my choice.- I try to take into account the feelings and the situation of the people who may be impacted by my decision- I always reflect first on what I want and how I feel.
First of all, considering all theWhat we need to make a decision options as well as the following aspects: Our feelings (making decisions is not only a rational process but it also involves feelings andIT MUST BE REMEMBERED that every emotions)decision has consequences. The principles and values thatMaking a choice always means you believe in (all decisions must be consistent with our personalgiving up other values)possibilities Information on the topic (before making a decision, find information about every option) Reflecting…….and communicating in an up-front and clear style.
2.Delegate our responsibility to make decisions to the other/letting the othersWe must not: make decisions for ourselves 1.Avoid and delay the decision until the last moment 3.Let fate or destiny decide for us 5. Do the first thing that comes to mind, without taking into account the possible consequences 4. Let fear overwhelm us or make decisions driven by fear of rejection or fear of disapproval
Exercises. How do you make your own decisions?Exercise 1A) Please, write down on a piece of paper some ideas about the way people make decisions:1.- let others making decisions for them2.- consider all the possible options3.- impulse-driven...B) Now, we would like you to reflect upon the possible risks, advantages, disadvantages and consequences of each of thefollowing : What is the best way to do it? Model Risk Advantages Disadvantages Consequences Others make decisions for us Assessing the options Impulse-driven Asking for help Fate or destiny … … …
Communication: A. Empathic B. ActiveCommunication Group communication skills
Empathic communication means having the skills to actively listenCommunication:A. Empathic to our interlocutor, being able to put ourselves into someone elsesB. Active shoes, as well as a capacity to effectively communicate our needs, feelings and wishes … through verbal and non-verbal or body language.
Listening carefully to what the others have to say, trying to understand what they mean.Putting ourselvesinto the place of Achieving Voicing ourothers, listening thoughts and empathicwithout making feelingsjudgments communication Showing to the other/others that we are listening and following along (nodding , smiling, agreeing, showing gladness or sadness, etc.).
Active listening requires us to clearly show that we are paying attention to our interlocutor. Active listening signals set the pace of the conversation: we know when to take turns, whether what we are saying is of interest or not, when we want to encourage the other person to continue speaking …. Elements involved in activeVerbal elements help send the message that we’re listeninglistening attentively that we encourage our interlocutor tocontinue talking:-Approval or disapproval sounds : “Ahhh, Ummm…”,etc.-Affirmative answers: “Absolutely”, “sure”, “I follow you”…-Summarizing: “that is to say…” “as you mentioned Non-verbal elements:before...” - Direct stance pointing at the-Asking some brief questions to clarify some aspects. interlocutor-Empathy: “I can image how you feel”, “I understand -Attentive facial expressionyou”… -Gestures and movements: nod,-Making a reference to some of the interlocutor’s smile, touch …mentions (repeating his/her name, or the feelings or ideas -Mirroring the facial expressionarticulated by him/her). of the person who speaks.
IMPORTANT Don’t carry out any other activity while the other person is speaking Wait until your interlocutor finish to say what he/she has to say. Focus on what the other person is telling you. Don’t make snap judgments: “that is not important”, “that’s nonsense”…
We must learn how to introduce ourselves in a group,Group joining the group conversation or starting a newcommunicationskills conversation by ourselves. Elements involved in group Verbal elements communication - Greeting the group members - Saying our name (if we don’t know the people in the group). - Asking other people’s names - If you know the members in the group, in order to start a conversation show interest in others by asking them how they are: “how Non-verbal elements was your day …? Well, mine was …” - Making eye contact with everyone -Asking open as well as specific questions : - Smiling You may make observations on the topic - Modulating the volume and the tone being discussed after listening about it, you of your voice so that everyone can hear may share your opinion, your personal what you say experience or an anecdote. - Approaching and joining the group, -Avoid conversations in pairs, as they break avoid being peripheral to it. up the group.
IMPORTANT Don’t speak before the others have finish speaking Don’t focus on what you’re going to say so that you don’t listen to the others talking Avoid conversation in pairs and engage in group conversation Don’t change the topic of the conversation abruptly Remember that to start and keep up a group conversation you are not expected to say anything wonderful or interesting What matters the most is to have a respectful attitude towards the others
Exercise. COMMUNICATIONExercise 1. Are you really listening to me?Now it is time to put into practice the lessons learned in the communication section. We say that a person doesactive listening when s/he is able to listen attentively, to show understanding and to generate empathy (that isto say to see and feel the situation from the other person’s perspective).It may seem easy, as many other things do, but it is not an easy thing to do. The best to learn is to put it intopractice repeatedly. Invite a friend to join you this exercise.A) One of you will tell a story that is relative relevant for you and the other will listen; at some stage during thenarration, the listener will...… challenge everything that is being said… give advice without having the speaker asking for it... say “we’ll discuss that later on”... try to tell a better story... engage in conversation with a third person whilst the speaker is telling his/her story... not give any feedback... be too funny and will mention nonsense after nonsense... cut the speaker short and change topics… reproach the speaker…look the other way instead of making eye contact with the speaker…answer back with a “why”….” to anything said to him/her…laugh for no apparent reason…feel offended and upset for everything that the other person says to him/her…finally make the speaker to keep quiet
B) One of you will tell the other person a problem that you want to resolve. The other person will listen and...…ask for clarifying questions…tell the speaker that s/he knows how s/he is feeling...congratulate the speaker...make eye contact and nod his/her head...appreciate the positive things that the speaker is sayingWhat is the most positive attitude? In what situation do our listening and communication skills show? It is upfor us to decide.