COMM 200 Interpersonal Communication
Professor: Donna Mills
February 3, 2013
Final Paper: Letter of Advice
Dear Tim and Sara, my advice to you for a successful relationship is; being able to communicate effectively. Even though men and woman communicate in different ways, effectively using interpersonal communication in a relationship requires an understanding of each other’s perceptions, emotions, and the nonverbal expressions. It is also essential to be able to describe strategies for managing interpersonal conflicts. Communication between husband and wife involves expectations, and problems occur when people behave in ways that are inconsistent with the relationship. People in relationships are interconnected and interdependent, and when you communicate it is important to make the other person feel valued. Understanding how perceptions, emotions and nonverbal expression affect interpersonal relationships. Researchers have shown that we have a tendency to overestimate our ability to communicate with people that are close to us. “People commonly believe that they communicate better with close friends than with strangers. That closeness can lead people to overestimate how well they communicate” (US News 2011). So just because Sara says “Its getting hot in here”, that is not necessarily your cue to rush to the bedroom. You have to be able to read between the lines, and understand what she means when she says something, just because you take it one way, doesn’t mean that’s the correct interpretation. The things that we say with our nonverbal communication are just as vital as what we say out loud. Not being able to accurate read the nonverbal cues that your spouse sends can become a big problem in a marriage. Collins English Dictionary defines nonverbal communication as “those aspects of communication, such as gestures, and facial expressions, that do not involve verbal communication but which may include nonverbal aspects of speech” (Collins English Dictionary 2009). When we listen to other we focus on what they say, but we also make judgments based on their actions and their body language. It is very easy to misread someone when they are saying one thing, but their body language portrays a different meaning. So it is essential to be able to understand each other’s words and just as importantly, what they are not saying. Also our emotions play a big factor in maintaining a successful relationship. Researchers have found that when feelings are not expressed, they have a tendency to “leak out” in some ways (Sole 2011). For example, if you get angry and try to repress those feelings of anger, ultimately you will no longer be able to do so, and even though it may be subconscious, it is going to show in either the way you talk or act towards the other person. Define emotional intelligence and its role in effective interpersonal relationships. Emotional intelligence is the capacity to understand, communicate, and manage emotions and feelings and to respond to the feelings of others (Sole 2011). Being able to respond and communicate with someone depends in large part on the type of emotions that are being used. It is critical to be able to effectively handle our emotions, as they can be both positive and negative influences on our relationships. Being able to read the emotions of your spouse will ensure that you have a successful marriage. For instance letting negative emotions hang around and influence how you communicate with each other can be a recipe for disaster, but being able to recognize those emotions and know when to deal with them is an example of emotional intelligence. Our moods often directly influence our emotions as well. If you are in good mood, then things seem to be going very well, everyone is happy and getting along. All it takes is just one bad mood, handled the wrong way and things are vastly different. If your mood starts to affect certain situations, like normal...