If you want to become an effective communicator, you need to learn the 5 styles of communication and identify the ones you use every day in your interactions. The 5 styles of communication have been categorized into assertive, aggressive, passive-aggressive, submissive and manipulative. Here is what you need to know about the 5 styles of communication.

1.    Assertive
It is considered the most effective and healthiest style of communication. If you are communicating assertively, you have high self-esteem and confidence to say whatever you are feeling without being too passive or aggressive. Basically, you understand your limits and you will not allow anyone to push you around.

If you are assertive, you can achieve goals without hurting other people, protect your own rights as well as those of others and you can make your own choices freely and take responsibility for them. Also, you are very expressive socially as well as emotionally and you can always accept compliments. Here, people will always take you for your word and know where they stand with you at all times.

When you are being assertive, you have excellent eye contact, your gestures are even as well as rounded and your posture is strong with no fidgeting. That way, people can get your message clear without any contradictions.

2.    Aggressive
An aggressive person often thinks about winning without thinking about the other people around him or her. Basically, you behave as if your needs are more important than those of other people. You also imagine you have more to contribute to everything than other people. It is quite ineffective to communicate aggressively because most people react to the message and forget about the content altogether.

As an aggressive communicator, other people might find you threatening, hostile, frightening, loud, belligerent, intimidating, unpredictable and much more. Often, your gestures are sharp, fast and very big. Basically, you are always invading the personal space of others and your posture suggests that you are bigger than everyone else around you.

Aggressive communicators often use abusive, name-calling and sarcastic language when they are speaking to other. The people receiving your message on the other hand might feel degraded, vengeful, loss respect to you, uncooperative, aggressive, defensive, hurt or afraid. If you are attacking people when you are talking to them, then they will not understand anything you are saying.

3.     Passive – Aggressive
Here, you might appear very passive on the outside but you are actually hiding your anger on the inside. If you are passive aggressive, you might feel resentful, powerless and often express your feelings with very subtle means trying to undermine the person you are talking to. Eventually, you might end up sabotaging yourself altogether.

Some of the behavioral characteristics of passive aggressive communicators include unreliability, gossiping, sulky, devious, sarcastic and patronizing. You will often speak with a sugary sweet voice and your posture is always asymmetrical. Your gestures when communicating will be quick and jerky while the facial expressions appear innocent and sweet without the rest suspecting anything.

Although you might feel like you are passing the message across with this communication method, people receiving the message might feel a little hurt, angry, confused and also resentful. That is because you might try as much as possible to hide what you are feeling but it always comes out in one way or the other.

4.    Submissive
When you are being submissive, your main goal is pleasing everyone around you trying to avoid any conflicts. Basically, you put the needs of other people above yours, assuming they have more to contribute and more rights. Therefore, you ignore yourself and fail to prioritize yourself when you are trying to please other people.

As a submissive communicator, you might also feel apologetic because you assume you are imposing on people whenever you want to ask for something. You are always on your toes trying to avoid any confrontation and might often find it tough taking any responsibilities or making decisions. Most of the times, you choose to opt out of anything and victimize yourself.

You might also blame other people for any events and fail to take compliments. It is also common for submissive communicators to appear inexpressive and emotionless. Your gestures when communicating will be fidgety and twisted while you fail to make any eye contact when talking to people. People around you will often feel frustrated, exasperated, guilty and will take advantage of you at all times.

5.    Manipulative
A manipulative communicator is always shrewd, calculating and scheming at all times. You are very skilled at controlling or influencing other people to do things for you without considering their needs or priorities. Often, you might hide whatever you are speaking and people will not be aware of what you are talking about.

Your behavior as a manipulative communicator will be cunning, making other people feel obliged and always asking people indirectly to meet your demands. Your voice is always high pitched, patronizing and envious of other people. You might also control other people insidiously such as sulking to get what you want and much more.

The people you are talking to will always feel frustrated, guilty, resentful, annoyed, irritated and angry. Basically, they will never understand where they stand with you and will feel frustrated trying to understand what you are telling them. As a manipulative communicator, you are interested in getting what you want without thinking about what other people want.