The next step in good communication is learning to be specific. Say exactly what you want, and don’t leave it open ended for others to have to guess your meaning.
Here are some examples that are done for you. Yes or no relates to the statement being specific or not:

Clean up the mess – No (This is not specific. I have no idea what mess is being discussed, or even what you mean by clean up.)
Put the toys on the shelf – Yes (This is specific and clearly explains what you want done.)
This kitchen is trashed – No (trashed doesn’t give me a very good idea what the problem is)
The sink is full of dishes — Yes (do you see how much more information is here than in the previous sentence)

Now you try it. Mark yes if the statement is specific, and no if it doesn’t give enough details.

1. Clean you room _________
2. Put the clothes in the hamper __________
3. I hate this dinner _____________
4. The peas taste bad to me _______________
5. That dog is covered with mud ____________
6. That dog is disgusting __________________
7. The weather was lousy today ____________
8. It was cold and rainy all day _____________

Your answers should be 1No 2Yes 3No 4Yes 5Yes 6No 7No 8Yes. Do you understand why? If not, re-read the directions or discuss this with your counselor.



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