Good communication is a very important thing that makes your friendships, both personal and professional or relationships successful. The most important thing in communications is clear speech. The more you are in your speech, the better people will respond to you and understand (Linder 12a). Non-verbal communication is an essential type of communication. Majority of our communication is much more than words. Non-verbal communication consists of facial expressions, gestures, eye contact, posture and tone of voice. If you are able to understand non-verbal communications, then you will connect better with friends, colleagues and family members (Non-verbal communication skills 1). Successful listening in communication involves the entire body; it helps with posture, eye contact, leaning forward towards speaker and nodding in acknowledgment (Linder 8b) My first conversation was with my boyfriend Richard at a restaurant having dinner; it lasted for almost three hours. I have known and dated Richard more than five years. That was a conversation that I was very comfortable holding. The second conversation was with my school headmaster. I was a class representative, so I was the one helping him organize a school trip. We were trying to decide where the class might enjoy going; it lasted approximately 30 minutes because I was so quick to tell him where they will enjoy and why. And I left his office.
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The amazing conversation with my boyfriend Richard was very comfortable talking about. The conversation was very relaxing, so was my posture. I leaned a little bit forward to show my interest. I kept clear eye contact, which showed that I was very much interested. I was blushing the whole time we talked about how we met. When it was my time to talk, I realized that I used my hands the whole time. I was waving them aimlessly because of the excitement; when he would talk to me, I nodded my head to show that I am very much interested with what he has to say to me. My concentration level was very high at that moment. If at all I was to meet with someone out there asking me what conversation I had with my boyfriend, I would tell them every single thing. I found myself to have seated very calmly without moving, just so I can hear everything he tells me. My non-verbal behaviors were very much appropriate for the conversations. That was more of comforting, soothing and calming talk between a lovely couple who are having dinner.
The second conversation was with the headmaster. It hardly lasted 30 minutes worth of a conversation, because I was uneasy and unable to keep eye contact. When I entered his office, I sat down across his chair. I was slightly sweating, my heart beat was fast and was shaking. I sat down, leaned back and started staring at different things in the office. I am usually one of those people who always use hand gestures while talking, but that day my hands were settling on my laps. I did my best to finish the conversation really fast since I was not very comfortable in there. I found myself switching seating position after two minutes. If u asked me all the things he had told me in there after I left, I couldn’t have told you anything because I wasn’t remembering. I think he realized that I was very nervous and uncomfortable until he tried to make a joke, but I really did not laugh the way I would when with friends. I finally left the office and was back to normal once again.
I recognized that I have better non-verbal skills in a more relaxed environment, than in my headmaster’s office. I need to reduce on the hand gestures a little bit. The talk with the headmaster, my hands were unable to move, so I just fidgeting with them under the oak table. The conversation held with my boyfriend, I kept on cutting him short all the time; but with the headmaster, I usually waited for him to finish the conversation so that I can talk. If only I could adapt to keeping eye contact, leaning a little forward to show some interest and loosen up my body with the headmaster, we could have come up with a better conclusion on where to go for the school trip. The casual conversation was very much interesting and didn’t feel out of place compared to the headmaster’s office. My body movements while in the office with the headmaster was very shaky, but with my boyfriend, I was so still so that nothing can pass me by.
So far so good, I think I should learn how to hold formal discussions, because in places like job interview for new jobs, you need to have a constant eye contact with the interviewer. I totally know that my non-verbal skills are great, but maybe I should slow down on the hand gestures. For me to be a great communicator I need to find a balance between those two boundaries. I should find an elderly person who is close to me, like my mother, to help me. We should be practicing holding important talks with her, until I get used to holding conversations with people like you boss or headmaster. That will help me be a great communicator.
Belmonte, Joelle. Nonverbal Communication Skills: The power of Nonverbal communication and Body Language. HelpGiude.
Linder, Joan. Study Unit: Interpersonal Communcation. 1991a.
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Linder, Joan. Graded Project: Interpersonal Communication. 1991b.