Effective Communication: Strategies For Teenagers and Young Adults

by Aminat Adejumo
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Effective communication for teenagers

For their voices to be heard, for their needs to be met, for their heart desires to be granted, for them to become the so-called leaders of tomorrow, and for them to build nations, there is a need for them to communicate and not just anyhow communication; it has to be an effective one.

Effective communication is a means or process of exchanging ideas, thoughts, and knowledge with expected corresponding feedback.

Communication is said to be effective when there is clarity in the message or information passed.

This brings us to strategies that can influence effective communication among teenagers. If you are looking forward to learning that, then you are reading the correct article.

Let’s dive in

Why Effective Communication is Important For Teenagers and Young Adults

Communication is one of the important assets, among others, when we talk about adolescent needs in today’s world. There are seven reasons why effective communication is important in the growing-up process of teenage personal life, school work, and profession in the long run.

Here’s a deeper exploration of why effective communication is paramount during the years of adolescence even as a young adult:

  1. Building confidence and comfort in social settings

Good communication helps teenagers speak up without fear. They gain confidence, which opens various social opportunities for them, and this enables them to interact freely with their friends. Good communication skills help one talk with clarity about what they think and thus promote a feeling of ease in every aspect of life, starting from the classroom and other social events.

  1. Fostering meaningful connections and friendships

Building relationships with your teenagers or your young adults is important. These crucial relationships may not be built without effective communication as a connecting pathway. Good communication allows teenagers to enter into meaningful relationships that entail knowledge of what both parties have to offer or say. It improves their social interactions and gives them a shoulder they can lean on in turbulent moments.

Read Also: Insights on Interpersonal Relationships for Nigerians

  1. Enhancing listening skills

Listening is as important in effective communication as one cannot be effective in conveying messages if one cannot listen to other people’s views. Good teenagers who understand communication well will also learn to listen carefully to themselves. Understanding others’ viewpoints is an important component that facilitates appreciating the existing diversity in our society.

  1. Cultivating empathy

However, communication goes way beyond a set of words and involves knowing, accepting, and respecting the feelings and ideas of other people. Many of these teens have enhanced empathy, as they are highly proficient communicators. The ability to view things from various angles generates empathy and encourages a warmer, friendlier society.

  1. Interpreting non-verbal cues

In an age when communication is not verbal, it becomes important to recognize nonverbal messages such as body language and facial expression. Teenage effective communicators understand the importance of nonverbal signs, enabling them to make the right decisions in social functions.

  1. Preparation for academic and professional success

In addition to the social aspect, communication skills are significant for educational and professional progress. Teenagers should express their views clearly, take an active part in class conversations, and be able to work as a team, which will help them achieve results during lessons, at school, and while working in a professional environment later on.

Read Also: Balancing Your Academic and Personal Life As A Nigerian Student

  1. Conflict resolution and problem-solving

Being a teenager is indeed challenging. Communication between teenagers allows them to have arguments among themselves and come up with good proposals for solving their problems. One would benefit from the life skills of articulating one’s thoughts with composure and negotiation skills in both personal relationships and workplaces.

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Barriers To Effective Communication

Some of the notable barriers to effective communication among teenagers include:

  1. Peer pressure

Fear of being judged by peers and not having a sense of belonging can discourage open and effective communication for some teens. 

  1. Lack of experience

Limited life experience can hinder communication. Communication becomes difficult when they have little or no authority over certain circumstances.

  1. Technological distractions

Excessive use of digital devices can create barriers to face-to-face communication. They can communicate effectively online, but physical communication is a hard nut to crack.

  1. Limited education

Ignorance of certain things has created a huge barrier to effective communication for teenagers, as they can only give what they have. When they don’t know something, they can’t communicate it effectively. 

  1. Emotional barrier

A state of mind constituting fear, anxiety, and anger creates a barrier to effective communication for many teenagers. The fear of teachers, guardians, and even peers is a typical example of what could cause a barrier to effective communication. 

  1. Assumptions

Having the mindset that they should understand what I mean can bring about the misinterpretation of information passed.

  1. Lack of self-confidence

“What would society think of me if I were to say this?” Fear of being judged and some teenagers’ personal experiences make them lack self-confidence.

Read Also: How To Build Self-Confidence As A Nigerian Student

  1. Cultural norms

In some conservative regions of Nigeria, traditional norms limit teenagers from voicing their opinions when adults are having a dialogue.

How to Improve Communication Skills of a Teen Or Young Adult

Effective communication skills are those skills that are necessary to build and maintain relationships, enhance understanding, and achieve successful interaction. Among these include:

  1. Confidence

They must be convinced before making others dance to their tone. Confidence is essential in all our life dealings even as an adult,  so you must ensure they know that they have to be brave enough to prove their point when needed. Confidence for some teens is a hard nut to crack but trust me, they can always build this with unwavering determination.

When they confidently communicate and have strong conviction in their idea, no one will have second thoughts about them. But when they are not even sure of what they are presenting or what they are requesting, they become a nuisance when communicating with someone older, on stage, or even among their peers. To build this confidence, you have to:

  • Prepare them in advance: Ask the right question and provide the answer to their question; seek the right information. Practice and engage them in positive self-talk.
  • Challenge them: Dare to challenge them. No one can help them better than themselves, even as much as you will want to help; always remember that. Let them participate in speech-giving contests, and debate competitions within and outside their school, sign them up to volunteer for community service, and encourage them to nominate themselves for student representative positions. All these challenges tend to build effective communication skills in them, and over time, communicating effectively anywhere becomes a piece of cake for them.
  • Tell them to read: They have to read a lot of books, especially on personal development. Reading books widens their horizons and instils in them the ability to communicate effectively anywhere.
  1. Respect

Respect is another skill that is essential for effective communication. Everyone wants to be respected, even a child, not to mention the different categories of people they meet daily. For their communication to be effective, they must respect other people’s points of view; they should not shun them. Even when they feel their contribution or point is not in line.

  1. Supportive communication

Showing interest in others’ success brings about effective communication. When they support their friend’s goal, dream, idea, or aspirations, they encourage open communication. This will foster a sense of belonging and make their communication effective.

  1. Empathy

Being passionate and having empathy towards others will make their communication effective. People will want to listen to them and will always want to dialogue with them because they feel for them.

  1. Avoid blame

Whatever the case might be, avoid blaming them for not having effective communication with you. Don’t be like, “It didn’t end up well because of the decision made by not communicating with you”. 

I know you see the need to let them know that they should pass thing through you before executing but blaming them will not do the trick, let them sense that you are interested in what they have to say.

  1. Conflict resolution

Conflict resolution is an essential skill they have to develop to communicate effectively. Matters or issues of conflict should be calmly resolved. Holding on to grudges against people might hinder them from communicating effectively, so you should make sure they avoid such.

  1. Knowing their audience

This entails understanding the personality, needs, and preferences of those they address. This will assist them in knowing how to bring about and where to direct any form of communication to make it effective.

  1. Active listening

Paying close attention to what others are saying and responding helps in understanding different perspectives on certain things, and when there is a clear understanding of the idea, communicating such an idea effectively to people won’t be a problem.

By incorporating these strategies, teenagers can develop strong communication skills that serve them well in various aspects of their lives.

If effective communication skills can be mastered well, effective communication can be a powerful strategy for teenagers to have a healthy relationship that enables them to build trust, balance responsibility, maintain individuality, strengthen and achieve goals, etc.


Effective communication is a crucial superpower to master. This gives them clarity of thought when putting out their opinions, comprehending people, and contributing meaningfully to society. While doing so, you prepare them for the challenges ahead and build a base for success.

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Edited by Emmanuel Odebiyi

About Author

Avatar of Aminat Adejumo
Aminat Adejumo
She is a passionate writer and orator who believes in writing to make right. She writes blog posts, articles, and poetry. Her interests are majorly in personal development, education, and health.

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