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There are many books on the market that purport to increase the levels of communication between and among people. Many of these are based upon the latest fads and offer little depth. In the book, "Effective Communication Skills", John Nielsen has brought years of personal and professional expertise to any reader who wants to develop authentic ways of deepening their experience of communicating with others while fostering the gift of mutual understanding. This is a work that couples, groups, and professionals alike will embrace and use!

James S. Vuovcolo, Master Certified Coach


When we think of communication, no matter what shape we give it, we can all usually agree it involves speaking and listening. But according to author John Nielsen, effective communication is much more complex. Beyond speaking and listening, communication involves emotion, perception, body language, addiction and more. His book, Effective Communication Skills, is designed as a workshop to be completed in self-study or as a group; including worksheets and templates to complete pertaining to each chapter. Participants will find themselves exposed to all aspects of effective communication and in turn become more effective communicators themselves.


One of the more interesting and surprising topics Nielsen covers is self-awareness. When people think of effective communication, speaking and listening immediately come to mind. In fact, Effective Communications Skills covers in great details how to be an influential speaker and a receptive listener. These two skills go hand in hand; you can't have communication without both. However, Nielsen argues, in order to be an effective communicator, you must be conscientious of your own emotions. “In order to enhance relations with others, people must first identify what they want to share with


others,” Nielsen writes. Sometimes our self-talk, thoughts and underlying emotions influence how we receive and send information. Several workbook activities are designed to help the reader create better self-talk habits and identify their underlying emotions. Effective Communication Skills carefully and meticulously guides the reader through a process of self-awareness, teaching communicators how to be more aware of their emotions and perceptions.


Simple new habits, such as changing the way you speak, can more consciously and clearly convey what you mean. In speaking about labels and how people perceive labels differently, Nielsen uses the example of green beans. He may compliment his friend's cooking by saying, these peas you cooked taste like green beans. If Nielsen thinks of green beans as being fresh and crisp, he's complimenting his friend's cooking. But if the friend thinks of green beans as canned and mushy, it means the peas he cooked aren't appetizing at all. Nielsen challenges readers to write down some of the labels we use, then clarify what we mean when we say those things.


Readers should seriously consider completing each exercise in the book in order to glean the most possible benefit from the information presented. As a workshop, the information and exercises build on those points presented. For self-study, the design is perfect. For a group, there could be more discussion topics or group exercises available. Either way, Effective Communication Skills is a comprehensive guide which will appeal to all styles of learners. Nielsen's writing is easy to read and not at all overwhelming, yet imparts wise advice to create foundational change and become a more effective communicator.

Pacific Book Review

This is an excellent book that teaches effective communications skills just like the title says.  I would personally benefit greatly if I would read it every year as a refresher course.  


Growing up in a family where codependency, obsessive compulsive and passive aggressive behavior ran rampant, I just adopted them all.  And I didn't even know I had problems for years.  


One of the things that I have learned from this book is that I can be assertive and speak up for myself.  I can do it without being angry or threatening to the other person.  I have learned to speak kindly but firmly when I need to disagree. When I am not assertive and just sit passively in the background, I could easily give the impression of acceptance and approval to the plan being discussed.   I do not have to let people manipulate me because I have learned to set boundaries.  And my self esteem has improved too.  


John has provided worksheets throughout the book that have showed me how to work through many emotions and destructive feelings.  My Self Talk was very negative and destructive. My husband used to constantly remind me that I was not in fact a mind reader as I would go on and on about what someone was thinking during a particular situation.  It was so easy for me to misunderstand.  Often it would be as simple as the fact that the person I was talking to had their mind on their sick cat at home and not really paying attention to what I was saying.  And I have learned that it is not always about me.


Feeling and emotions can be my downfall and there are examples of how to deal with so many of these things I struggle with.  Things like hurt, anger, rejection, feeling overwhelmed and what I can do to turn them around.  


Learning to say I instead of We was a new behavior for me as well.  I would often say "We feel this way," or  "You know how when You think this or that".  I have no right to include anyone in what I am saying unless they have asked me to speak for them.  I've learned to take personal responsibility for what I say and use I statements.  This book will teach you how to be successful.


Through other lessons I have learned to listen more to others.  Do not give advice, and I don't need to agree.   Sometimes I just need to be there for a friend and listen.  Show empathy and be quiet and listen.  I've learned that I have over used the words Never and Always.  They are for the extremes and rarely correct for the situation.  Another couple of hot topics for me that are addressed are the Fear of failure and Fear of rejection.  I had to discover the sources and work through a lot, but this book really helped me through the process.  


I think this is a great book  Easy to understand and work through.  It has been very helpful to me and I am grateful that John has passed on  his knowledge from many years of study and experience.  Thank you, John.

Sandra Boyd

John Nielsen is a man of wisdom and expertise.  I know from first-hand experience of his love and compassion for people.  With his many years of experience, John’s professional competency includes a mastery of communication skills.  In his book, Effective Communication Skills, John lays out a comprehensive manual for acquiring the fine art of communicating.  What many businesses have invested thousands of dollars in training their employers, John has made available to all.  Whether you are desiring a better marriage, stronger leadership skills, or simply want more confidence in presenting yourself to others than this compendium of expertise in the fine art of communication is for you!  Spending the time to acquire these skills has made a difference in my life and I expect these skills will make the difference in yours.  

Anthony Martini, M.A.; STM.

This is an a amazing book for workshops and small groups. It really gets you thinking and helps facilitate the brainstorming process in an organized way. I highly recommend Effective Communication Skills for anyone who feels like they are struggling with communication.


“I was a little skeptical about the effectiveness of the skills talked about in John Nielsen’s book. I’ve been reading books, going to seminars and doing all the things that I thought would help me communicate

better in my relationships. However, none of that would have worked if I had not used the simple skills found in John’s book Effective Communication Skills.  It completely turned my most important relationship around.  My husband and I are still amazed at how quickly we worked through issues.  On a scale of 1-10, I’d give it a 10!”

Brandy P.

According to Ephesians 4:15 we must speak the truth in love so that we can grow-up in all things. With that it is clear from God’s Word that speaking the truth in love is required for growth. In other words, if you want to grow and see others around you grow, you must learn to communicate the truth in love. That’s what John Nielsen shares in his book Effective Communication Skills. As a leader, I found Effective Communication Skills to be the key to advancing God’s vision for our team and also for my marriage. John is a wonderfully gifted teacher. If you want to grow personally and professionally, I highly recommend this book.

Pastor Walter Hoye, Chaplain for the Golden State Warriors

To the reader

Are you interested in changing your life for the better? READ THIS BOOK! Are you having problems dealing with your spouse, friends, children, clients, etc. You can change this by reading this book, and learn the art of Effective Communication. John Nielsen has written a book that can have a profound effect on your ability to communicate with others. I've watched John use this process for more than 30 years and I have learned so much from his teaching. As a 30 year lifetime Elementary School Teacher, MA in education and an MA of Divinity and a graduate from the school of hard knocks, I highly recommend this must read book! Enough said! Buy it! Read it! Enjoy it! and GROW!!!

Henry Taylor, MA, Education, MA Divinity

John Nielsen has written one of the most straightforward books out there in regards to communication skills. Whether

you deal with a difficult person, a team member, a manager, a client or your partner, communication can be a challenge. Each chapter in this book brings in step by step instructions regarding new techniques to improve your skill level, not to mention steps on how to apply them. You will gain tools that cover an entire behavioral purpose , rather than just communication.

Joel of Joelbooks

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