The Importance of Nonverbal Communication

Topics: Nonverbal communication, Communication, Paralanguage Pages: 7 (1885 words) Published: April 19, 2013
The Importance of Nonverbal Communication

Strengthens or Weakens Verbal Communication

One of the most crucial aspects of nonverbal communication is its ability to strengthen verbal communication. For example, if you tell your spouse you love him and then you follow up your oral communication with loving and endearing actions, the message of love is strengthened. On the contrary, if you tell your teenager not to smoke, yet you smoke in front of them daily, the verbal message and nonverbal message will contradict one another causing confusion and disbelief.

Provides Cues

Nonverbal communication provides cues to other people to help guide or instruct him. For example, if a police officer is in the middle of an intersection and he faces his hand at your car, you know this means to stop. The nonverbal cue to stop could save your life and the lives of the other passengers on the road. Other cues in American society could be clapping hands, winking with the eye or a shrug of the shoulders.


Nonverbal communication clarifies the verbal message. This can be seen in a presentation. The speaker is verbally communicating and uses nonverbal visual aids to help the listeners understand more effectively. A nonverbal aid in this situation can be a graph, chart or slide show. Incorporating nonverbal communication in an interpersonal or group conversation will provide greater clarity and comprehension.

Creates Culture

Whether a culture is created in a family or a corporation, it is the nonverbal communication that is responsible for it. In every relationship and group there are certain norms and expectations that are not verbally communicated. Most of the time these rules of engagement are created through nonverbal expressions whether it is touch, time or gestures. Nonverbal communication can make a culture hostile, comforting or awkward.

Adds Depth

Nonverbal communication adds depth to verbal communication. This is seen in the expression of emotions. Emotions are a form of nonverbal communication that provides depth and greater meaning for an individual's soul. For example, a person can give a speech with no emotion and lose the crowd or they can say the same speech with emotion behind it and captivate the audience.


Importance of Nonverbal Communication

Verbal and nonverbal communication are required for human communication. Both types of communication exist primarily on the concept of symbolic communication, and cannot be fully understood without considering the other. Language in communication is extremely powerful, as words can be used to shape culture, create meaning, classify individuals, and both clarify and confuse symbolic meaning. Nonverbal communication, beyond its influence over verbal communication, is often the first type of communication expressed during a communication exchange. People begin to formulate understandings and opinions of others before they even hear them speak, and nonverbal communication expresses the information during early phases of interaction. Verbal and nonverbal communication are directly related, and understanding the power each style exerts over the entire communication process is key to effectively developing and executing quality communication strategies.



Every utterance is made up of both verbal and nonverbal components, making how you say something just as important as what you say. Nonverbal communication involves sending and receiving messages without the direct use of words. The wide variety of nonverbal communication channels and the unwritten rules for each make up a complex aspect of interpersonal communication. Modes

Nonverbal communication may be conveyed through your general appearance and manner of dress, posture, facial expressions, body...
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