Non -Verbal Communication Introduction: Actions speak louder than words. Non -Verbal Communication is the message or response not expressed or sent in words -hints, suggestions, and indications. “What you are speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say” -Ralph Waldo Emerson There is a distinction between the meanings we „give‟ in words and the meanings we „give –off‟ in NV signals. Christopher Turk puts it very simply: “One cannot not behave. Now, if it is accepted that all behavior in an interactional situation has message value, i.e., is communication, it follows that no matter how one may try, one cannot not communicate. Activity or inactivity, words or silence, all have message value: they influence others and these others, in turn, cannot not respond to these communications.” NVC is the unspoken communication that goes on in every Face-to-Face encounter with another human being. It is recognized as the route to discover what the other side wants, without them ever saying it, like a secret way into their soul. NVC stands for the innermost, instinctual form of human communication IMPORTANCE OF NON-VERBAL COMMUNICATION: Communication researcher Mehrabian found that only 7% of a message‟s effect is carried by words; listeners receive the other 93% through non -verbal means. Birdwhistell suggested that spoken words account for not more than 30-35% of all our social interactions. Over 65 percent of the social meanings of the messages we send to others are communicated non-verbally. To create impressions beyond the verbal element of communication (kinesics, chronemics,vocalics, environment) To repeat and reinforce what is said verbally (occulesics, kinesics) To manage and regulate the interaction among participants in the communication exchange (kinesics, occulesics, proxemics, synchrony) To express emotion beyond the verbal element (kinesics, occulesics, haptics, vocalics, proxemics) To convey relational messages of affection, power, dominance, respect, and so on (proxemics,occulesics, haptics) To promote honest communication by detecting deception or conveying suspicion (kinesics,occulesics, vocalics) To provide group or social leadership by sending messages of power and persuasion (kinesics,vocalics, chronemics) TYPES OF NON-VERBAL MESSAGES: A. Body Language or Kinesics B. Clothing or Art-factual Communication C. Voice or paralanguage D. Space and Distance, or Proxemic factors E. Color F. Time, or Chronemics; and G. Touch or Haptics A. Body Language “The bodily gestures, postures, and facial expressions by which a person communicates nonverbally with others” - (Soukhanov 1992:211). KINESICS: POSTURE GESTURE FACIAL EXPRESSIONS GAZE / EYE CONTACT “ Body language and kinesics are based on the behavioral patterns of nonverbal communication, but kinesics is still so new as a science that its authorities can be counted on the fingers of one hand " -(Fast 1970:9). Basic Types of Body Language postures 1. OPEN / CLOSED people with arms folded and legs crossed and bodies turned away are signaling that they are rejecting messages. People showing open hands, fully facing you and both feet planted on the ground are accepting them. 2. FORWARD/ BACK when people are leaning forward and pointing towards you they are actively accepting or rejecting the message. When they are leaning back, looking up at the ceiling, doodling on a pad, cleaning their glasses they are either passively absorbing or ignoring it. Body Language: 1. Facial expression(s) 2. Eyes 3. Lips 4. Arms 5. Hands 6. Fingers A.1. The Face: o The face is an important source of information. o Since the face cannot be easily hidden, it is an important source of nonverbal information and communicates a variety of emotions. o In addition, eye contact, pupil size, and the smile provide additional cues to informed observers. Facial Expression(s) 1 What is the impression you wish to convey? 2 Do you smile at others? 3 Always smiling never smile, sometimes. Forehead Wrinkles Anger Eyebrows Outer edges up Anger Nose Upward Contempt A.2 Eyes Centered Focused Gazing Up Thinking Gazing Down Shame Gaze on the Side Wandering Guilty Disinterested, Bored A.3. Lips Lips Parted Together Wide Open Relaxed, Happy Possibly Concerned Very Happy / Very A.4. Arms Arms Crossed Angry, Disapproving Open Honest, Accepting .5. Hands Isn‟t it exiting Rubbing the palms together Hands Clenched Together frustration gesture Rubbing Eyes Tired Rubbing Chin folded Thinking, Timid, Shy A.6. Fingers Fingers Interlocked Tense Pointing at you Angry OK Signal Fine, Everything‟s OK V Sign up yours B. Artifactual Communication and Color o Art factual communication is an integral part of the nonverbal package. o It includes the use of personal adornments such as clothing, jewellery, makeup, hairstyles, and beards. o People are apt to make inferences about us based on the way we dress. C. Voice or paralanguage Vocalic (also called paralanguage) deals with vocal cues, more accurately referred to as then on phonemic qualities of language. These include accent, loudness, tempo, pitch, cadence, rate of speech, nasality and tone, insofar as these convey meaning. Vocalic is sometimes subdivided into several categories. Vocal characterizers include laughing, crying, yawning, and so on. These can be associated with culture, such as the different ways various cultures accept the practice of belching. Vocal qualifiers such as volume, pitch, rhythm and tempo also are associated with cultural distinctions. In Arab culture, for example, speaking loudly connotes sincerity, whereas in North America it often is interpreted as aggressive. Vocal segregates (sounds such as mmmm,uh-huh, oooo) likewise also differ among various cultures. Vocal rate deals with the speed at which people talk, another factor that offers various interpretations. D. Space and Distance or Proxemic factors o Researchers divide environmental spaces into four zones: intimate, personal, social, public based on the perceived permanence of the physical space shown in fig 9. o Territoriality is an important concept in communication: typically, human beings stake out space or territory. o Territoriality describes the need to demonstrate a possessive or ownership relationship to space. Markers are used to reserve space and set boundaries that help identify the space as belonging to someone. Zone Distances The radius of the air bubble around suburban middle class white people living in Australia, New Zealand, England, North America and Canada is generally the same. It can be broken down into four distinct zone distances. 1. Intimate Zone (between 15 and 45 centimetres or 6 to 18 inches) Of all the zone distances, this is by far the most important as it is this zone that a person guards as if it were his own property. Only those who are emotionally close to that person are permitted to enter it. This includes lovers, parents, spouse, children, close friends and relatives. There is a sub-zone that extends up to 15 centimetres (6 inches) from the body that can be entered only during physical contact. This is the close intimate zone. 2. Personal Zone (between 46 centimetres and 1.22 metres or 18 to 48 inches) This is the distance that we stand from others at cocktail parties, office parties, social functions and friendly gatherings. 3. Social Zone (between 1.22 and 3.6 metres or 4 to 12 feet) We stand at this distance from strangers, the plumber or carpenter doing repairs around our home, the postman, the local shopkeeper, the new employee at work and people whom we do not know very well. 4. Public Zone (over 3.6 metres or 12 feet) Whenever we address a large group of people, this is the comfortable distance at Which we choose to stand. Gender, Diversity, and Technology o The use of nonverbal cues is affected by variables such as gender, culture, and technology. o The ways men and women use nonverbal cues reflects societal practices. o To a large degree, people modify their use of nonverbal cues depending on the culture they belong to or identify with. o Nonverbal communication is also affected by whether communication is occurring on-or off-line. F. Time or Chronemics: Chronemics deals with the use of time as an element of communication. Formal time is measured in minutes, hours, days, and so on. Informal time is measured relative to seasons, social customs, lunar cycles, etc. Chronemics involves specifics such as punctuality (which can be monochromic or M-time and polychronic or P-time) along with patterns of dominance or deference within a communication situation. For example, studies show that men are more likely than women to dominate a conversation and interrupt another speaker. Chronemics also deals with time from the standpoint of social settings, such as the likelihood among Americans of arriving early for business meetings but being “fashionably late” for social activities, while in Latin American and Arab culture, business people often arrive at a time Westerns would consider “late,” taking business meetings as occasions for hospitality and socializing. Meanwhile, the Sioux language doesn‟t even have a word for “late,” reflecting a very relaxed attitude toward time. Chronemics also considers the use of monochronemics (doing one thing at a time, emphasis on schedules and promptness, getting to the point quickly) versus polychronemics (doing several things at a time, emphasis on people and the whole of a relationship). Studies show that the monochronemic conversation (talking about one thing at a time) is common in Northern Europe and North America. Meanwhile, Latin American, Asian, Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cultures are more likely to use polychronemic conversation (multiple conversations at the same time, and frequent interruption by other speaker-listeners). G. Touch or Haptics: Haptics focuses on touching as an element of communication, indicating both the type of touch as well as its frequency and intensity. Like many other elements of nonverbal communication, haptics is very much a function of culture. It has been noted, for example, that Mediterranean, Middle Eastern and Latin American cultures employ much social touching in conversation, including embraces and hand-holding; these are called high-contact (or high-touch) cultures. In moderate-touch cultures such as North America and Northern Europe, touching is used only occasionally, such as in handshakes and sporadic shoulder touching or back slapping. In low contact cultures such as in Northern Asian cultures, meanwhile, social touching is rarely used at all. But the geography is by no means that simple. People in the Asian nation of the Philippines, for example, use a large amount of social touching in conversation and personal interaction. Even within a culture, haptics vary. For example, handshakes vary in length and strength of grip depending on the actual (or hoped for) degree of intimacy between the two people shaking hands. Tips to improve Non-Verbal Communication o o o o o o o o o o o o Be honest, especially when communicating emotions. Use a firm, friendly handshake when meeting new people. Maintain eye contact with your entire audience. Reinforce your words with tones and gestures. Be aware of your postures. Use appropriate gestures to support your points. Imitate the posture and appearance of people you want to impress. Show respect for speakers and listeners. Touch people when appropriate and acceptable. Smile genuinely, as a fake one be obvious Positive NV behavior improves your non-verbal communication effectiveness. You can improve your effectiveness as a non-verbal communicator by observing and analyzing both the physical environment of interactions and the body language, appearance, gestures, vocal cues, eye contact, and touching behavior of the participants. o Inculcate positive Body Sport. Bibliography: 1. Body Language by Allen Pease 2. Communication for Business – Shirley Taylor, fourth Edition , Pearson Education 3. Google Images for pictures.
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