Just imagine, men and women communicate in the same language, in the same place and have the same backgrounds, but they are unable to understand each other. What is the reason for so many misunderstandings? As academic researches point out, the various communication styles are closely connected with psychological differences as well as coined gender stereotypes in the society.
Hierarchy determines your language
Women have always had lower status than men and it is not easy to overcome stereotypes, which are so deeply rooted in society. They surround us, from popular Disney movies to the Bible. It seems that this position of women reflects their communication style. Women for example have a tendency to be more polite and talkative. Chodorow, Hartman, Statham and Surrey state that “for females, the process of communication itself is valued”. They are more focused on establishing and maintaining contacts and sharing opinions and emotions. Whereas men are searching for being appreciated by women and underscoring their own position in the hierarchy. Overall, the main goal of male conversation is breaking the news to the listener as directly and briefly as possible to avoid being misunderstood. Moreover, men have a tendency to interrupt and speak more confidently than women in order to establish leadership and impress their listeners. On the other hand, female communication style focuses on building mutual understanding and support as well as raising the level of trust and respect instead of dominating their listeners.
Many researchers have tried to explain the reasons why female communication style is so incomprehensible for males. According to John Gray, the way of communication reflects the variety of values, goals and needs of gender. It is common knowledge that men are goal-oriented whereas women are relationship-oriented. Just follow your workday to spot the difference. For instance, men tend to be self-affective at work, as they want to achieve tangible outcomes, whereas women concentrate on creating a friendly and helpful atmosphere at work and cooperation to achieve a goal. They don’t need to be regarded as the leader of a project. Overall, women converse in a more polite manner, they avoid swearing and using intensifiers and tag questions, meanwhile men want to be treated as more independent, confident and assertive.
Follow my thoughts
Have a look at the most commonly used words according to gender. From the men’s point of view, women generally overuse such words as: love, hate, literally, ridiculous, awesome, whatever, bitch, seriously, gay, nice, like.
Here, you can find the whole description of the aforementioned top 10 with the explanation of women’s secret language: Top 10 overused words
Generally, women have a tendency to overuse the phrase “give me five minutes” which means only one thing: wait and don’t complain that you are still waiting. So, what should men do to avoid being involved in a gender misunderstanding? Remember that conflict is sometimes inevitable as a part of our life, but it all depends on how we manage it. You need to know how to communicate between genders to keep the peace. Let’s do it! Notice that men live in a world of status whereas women live in a world of connections, which further means preferring asymmetry to symmetry and inequality to equality. When it comes to solving a problem, women will be talking about it and stirring up emotions whereas men will be focusing on solving the problem as quickly as possible in a rational way.
Even though, naturally, men speak slightly less than women, it is not true that they have nothing in common when it comes to sending text messages. Ladies, maybe you have some ideas? Feel free to share your knowledge about “newcomers from Mars” with our readers!
Written by Aleksandra Święcicka. Journalist, web editor and social media expert. Communication Trainee at TermCoord