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Interpersonal Communication Essay

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First off, let me welcome you to a brand new world of love, care family bonds and holy matrimony. My name is Stacey Lindsey, and I am going to give you an idea of interpersonal communication is going to affect your lives, and the skills/knowledge you will need in order to find yourselves together and still happy 50 years down the road. Marriage today seems, to some, to be a fly-by-night operation. I stand here today writing you to let you know that this does not have to be the case.

If you two are willing to take suggestions and follow a simple set of rules based on a healthy relationship built on proper interpersonal communication, then you have a chance to find yourself happy and in love for some time to come. Communication is the keystone to any strong relationship. In order to truly understand ourselves and our loved ones, we must first understand the way that we interact in our day to day intermingling.

Explain the principles and misconceptions in effective interpersonal communications. In the text book Making Connections: Understanding Interpersonal Communication (Sole,2011), we are shown that there are six basic principles at plat regarding Human communications. First, we are told that communication is symbolic. Second, we are shown that communication is shared meaning. Third, communication is shown to be a process. Fourth, the argument is made that communication is culturally determined. Fifth, we are shown that communication occurs in context.

Sixth, we are told that communication is purposeful. While these principles serve to explain the basic meanings behind how communications work, there will always be a basic misconception about how and what communication is meant to be. It is important, though, to remember that a basic set of principles guides us through understanding interpersonal communication. The use of symbols is widely believed to be what makes human language unique. A symbol can be anything that conveys a meaning, and it can be written, spoken, or non-verbal. Drawings, photographs, and music can be symbolic. Even objects such as homes, automobiles, clothing, and jewelry can be symbolic (Sole, Sn. 1.3, para 2.). Human beings have a unique ability to make almost anything stand for something, giving an almost endless ability to communicate.

The fact the communication is shared meaning is the driving force behind the ability to visualize stories and information through shared language and symbols of our world. Our perception will directly affect how a story is communicated, so we must see these shared meanings as abstraction.

Communication is a lifelong process by which we gain knowledge and experience, with which we sharpen our communication skills. Because this is an ongoing thing, we must continually work to maintain and build on the relationship we form.

Communication is culturally determined, meaning that our cultures, or the way we eat, sleep, live and understand the world, affect the way we communicate. Many white americans idealize a dispassionate and logical mode of debating and problem-solving. In mediation this is expressed in maxims such as “separate the people from the problem” and the use of caucuses to cool down emotions (Fisher and Ury, 1981).

In Black and White Styles of Conflict (Kochman, 1981) it states that African Americans construe a difference in communication style differently, and that “Blacks call this constraining mode of behavior fronting, and they generally regard negatively situations in which it is necessary to front… All blacks consider fronting to be a strain”. Our ability to rationalize, our willingness to work things out, and our likely hood of finding common ground with someone we disagree with is greatly affected by our culture.

Communication must be understood as a context driven subject. Where, when, and how we come to communicate is going to drive how we interact with others. Things such as our physical state, our mental well being, and the emotion surrounding a subject are sure to contribute to how we appreciate a communicated subject.

It is important to remember that communication is purposeful. We do not communicate simply to make noise, but instead to share meaning and connect with others. Our needs are influenced and met through interaction with the outside world.

These principles of communication guide us to understand the meaning and importance of human interpersonal communications and how we can communicate properly. There are misconceptions in interpersonal communication, though. The belief that we communicate only for our own good and that we will be unable to understand the meaning behind something without the proper context is wrong. We will find our way as we need be.

Identify the barriers to effective interpersonal interactions. Competence, language, perception, and information are all barriers that can get in the way of effective interpersonal interactions. Any of these four barriers can cause an issue so great that effect communication is made impossible. All four parts must be met satisfactory if clear and concise communication is to be had.

An article in the periodical Supervisory Management (1991) a situation is given that shows the proper way to get past barriers of effective interaction. “In order to make certain that you cover all aspects of a subject, you must take the time beforehand to plan what you want to say. In the case of an unsatisfactory employee, for instance, it’s not enough to know that his work has been slipping. Think about when you first noticed the problem, list examples of the problem on a piece of paper, and be prepared to explain what changes in the quality of performance you are requiring.

Mentally go over the employee’s work history for the past few months to see if you can determine when they occurred. Pinpoint episodes that caused problems in the employee’s performance and prepare yourself to discuss them. Put yourself in the employee’s position and anticipate how he will react to what you are saying. Then try to prepare a proper response”. (Para. 4).

All four barriers are avoided using simple tools. Competence, or having the knowledge to understand the subject, is taken care of by planning what you will say. The language section is covered by the same effect by known what you will say and how you will explain your thoughts. Your personal perception is a tough barrier to breach, but by listing examples of the particular problem on a piece of paper and taking that aspect of perception our of play, you effectively move forward. Lastly, the information that has been complied in order to present a clear and concise explanation of what is needed and how it can be done will avert any issues of this becoming a barrier.

Averting the barriers that get in the way of interpersonal communication in its top form is going to give you a stronger relationship and a better avenue to share and learn about each other. Not allowing these four barriers to get in the way of your communication will leave an open line of communication to share your feelings and understandings of the world with one another.

Recognize how words have the power to create and affect attitudes, behavior, and perception. Words are very powerful things. By uttering just the simplest word we can bring division and even hatred into a relationship. The miscommunication of language and can lead to misunderstandings, loss of clear communications, and at times, the end of a relationship completely. This does not have to be true. Understanding that words have power, and they can create and affect attitudes, behavior, and perception is a tool that will allow you to communicate to the best of your ability by understanding the power of your language.

A word has the ability to represents can create a myriad of different emotions, feelings, and reactions. By choosing to use a word in one way, we find that we have affected another persons attitude, behavior, or even their perception of us/ ourselves. I, personally, noticed at a young age that my use of certain words in certain ways brought forth great emotion in the people around me. An example of this is the word “faggot”. I have never, and do not expect to ever, had an issue with homosexuals or their personal lifestyles. My use of the word described a person who did something extremely silly that I found myself unable to understand. Certain people would react angrily to the word, while others would accept it as funny and laugh away the misunderstanding around it. Sole

(2011), tells us “Negative connotations often act s triggers to derail your interpersonal communication. We all have trigger words that create an immediate emotional reaction when we hear them” (Sect. 4.1).

By understanding how we interact with one another, and how our words, and not only our actions, effect those around us as well as ourselves, we stand a chance of finding away to communicate effectively.

Define emotional intelligence and its role in effective interpersonal relationships. In the text of Making Connections: Interpersonal Communications (Sole, 2011), emotional intelligence is defined as “The capacity to understand, communicate, and manage emotions and feelings and to understand and respond to the feelings of others” (Glossary), Emotional intelligence plays an integral role in effective interpersonal relationships. Without the skills mentioned we may never have a true understanding of what makes our loved one tick.

We, as human beings, are a complicated lot. Our emotional make up is complicated, our ways of communicating are affected by an array of outside sources, and we can be tough to keep up with sometimes. If a husband is unable to sense a change in his wife’s emotional state due to something able to connect and communicate properly in order to find out what may be bothering her, he is doomed to fine himself alone, or worse, in an unhappy relationship. The ability to understand, communicate, and manage emotions will give a husband or wife the ability to make it through life a bit easier, as life will never be easy itself.

Evaluating appropriate levels of self-disclosure is satisfying to a stable relationship. The quality and quantity of marital communication and disclosure had been linked to the level of perceived satisfaction within the marriage. Self-disclosure is one type of marital communication that has been identified as a key factor in this development. Although quality communication is defined differently from study to study, most agree that happy marriages and self-disclosure go hand-in-hand.

Sharing private feelings, fears, doubts and perceptions is essential to self-disclosure and allows reductions with your mate will be. Once you mutually determine that you want to establish long-term relationship, disclosure continues and over time leads to more personal topics. Permitting one’s true self to be known can be difficult, yet to build a solid rapport in marriage it is imperative.

The Risk of Self- Disclosure

While self-disclosure can have many positive benefits; it can be risky, and can have negative consequences, true enough. Sharing information about yourself makes you vulnerable, and van be used to take advantage of you. However, it is the only way you can learn, feel, grow and have a meaningful, successful marriage.

Broadly speaking, empathy as a form of self-disclosure, gives us the ability to feel for another person, to imagine oneself in the same situation, enduring those same experiences and emotions. Empathy is also something you both will have to learn; you must have the mental flexibility to put yourself in the shoes of the other person.

Effective Interpersonal communication is often based on empathy, since interpersonal communication skills refer to how we interact with each other on a personal level. Whenever two people care about each other, as you do, they use many different interpersonal communication skills. Empathy is one of the most crucial skills that we have and can use on a daily basis. Listening with empathy can help you express yourselves and feel heard, as well. Learn to improve your self-disclosure.

Empathetic listening will not only give you the ability to put yourself in another person’s shoes, but also provide a supportive listening environment. Neuroscientist Jean Decety, believes that empathy is even a mirrored emotion and that empathy is one of those human impulses that defy easy explanation. It gets entangled with sympathy or compassion or commiseration; it submerges into altruism. Empathy requires emotional control-the capacity to distinguish yourself from the other person, a gift invaluable to experiencing closeness in a relationship such as marriage.

Describe strategies for managing interpersonal conflicts. Conflicts are sure to arise in any good, healthy relationship. Though this may seem odd, it is part of effective interpersonal communication. We must be able to discuss our feelings and needs, and at times, we have to argue about the importance of these needs or emotional situations. By listening, understanding and communicating effectively, you will find yourself in a place of understood emotions and happy campers.

As a newlywed couple you must remember that life can only be as good as you make it. If you are unable to communicate effectively, you must look at the current situation and see if it is caused by personal error or a misunderstanding of how a relationship is supposed to work. If effective interpersonal communication seems to be impossible, maybe it is time to take steps towards a better understanding of what effective communication is, and maybe it is time to reexamine your relationship as it stands. To find your selves in a relationship that is healthy, open, full of free and exciting communication is the goal here. Good luck, and good night.

Reference

Fisher, Roger and Ury, William (1981) Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In. New York: Penguin Books, 1981

Kochman, Thomas. Black and White Styles of Conflict. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press. 1981

Sachs, R. (1991). Overcoming the Obstacles to Communication. Supervisory Management. Vol. 36, Iss. 7; Pg.4 (found through ProQuest at Ashford. edu)

Sole, K. (2011). Making Connections: Interpersonal Communication. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc.

Ashford Student Library ProQuest Shared Talking Styles: Herald New Last Relationships

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