Monday, December 8, 2014

The Holidays Call for Elf Ears or Communication Strategies

Photo of Elf's Ear and Hat
Many people with hearing loss find the holidays stressful because it is hard to connect with others over all the noise at big family gatherings or parties. As a leader, the best gift you can give your membership is to teach or remind them how to handle these situations especially during the holidays. Now you can either suggest your members write to Santa to ask for a pair of Elf Ears :-),  or better yet, teach them how to use the indispensable tool of communication strategies. 

Communication strategies are the best way to fill in what we missed in a tal when our hearing aids,  implants and even ALDs cannot handle. Hearing aids are great but they are not the final solution for many conversations where clarity is lost and communication strategies can fill those gaps. Communication Strategies also provide the indispensable foundation for all us to use to self-identify and self-advocate for ourselves throughout the year.

One of the best primers for holiday communication strategies is Arlene Romoff's very insightful and popular guide:  Seven Tips To Better Communication during the holidays. It can be found on the HLAA website.

HLAA Boston also created a wonderful "Surviving and Thriving Holiday Tool Kit” this season which they emailed to all the members and friends of their chapter. Their message offered a "tool kit" featuring the transcript of the recent HLAA webinar on the subject along with their best wishes for a wonderful new year.  The photo below is courtesy of HLAA Boston which preceded their holiday message to draw greater attention.

In my view, communication strategies are THE most important skill that chapter leaders can teach your members as well as their spouses and families. I hope you will consider adding some guidance on the topic to your holiday meeting remarks,  your newsletter, Facebook page and perhaps even with a special mailing.

Happy Holidays to all,

HLAA Boston Holiday Swirls Photo

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