Interpersonal Communication Is An Essential Element Of

992 WordsMar 24, 20174 Pages
Interpersonal communication is an essential element of the human existence. A substantial part of interpersonal communication is nonverbal. Adler, Rosenfeld, and Proctor define nonverbal communication as “messages expressed by nonlinguistic means” (204). These messages can be used for different reasons, intentionally or unintentionally. Sometimes nonverbal communication is used to replace words, other times it is used to enhance words. There are also times nonverbal communication is used without the user’s awareness of having sent a message. It is said that “all nonverbal behavior communicates information” (Adler et al. 204). There are many ways a communicator can send nonverbal messages. These include body movements, facial movements,…show more content…
“There are at least 8 distinguishable positions of the eyebrows and forehead, 8 more of the eyes and lids, and 10 for the lower face” (Adler et al. 216). This makes the face one of the most expressive parts of nonverbal communication. I witnessed a woman reacting to her party host tell a sexually inappropriate story around the dinner table. Her eyebrows were pinched, forehead was wrinkled, and she had a slight frown on the corner of her lips. This is a great example of facial displays because it involves many parts of her face working together to share her feelings. I interpreted her facial display to mean she was appalled and completely disapproved of the dinner conversation. It was clear that the woman did not want to be disrespectful by verbally sharing her opinion. She was able to show respect by withholding her words and providing a facial display instead. It is interesting to learn that vocal elements are not verbal communication. Vocal elements, or paralanguage, is “the way a message is spoken” (Adler et al. 220). Vocal elements include “rate, pronunciation, pitch, tone, volume, and emphasis” (Adler et al. 220). A good example of paralanguage is a wife saying to her husband “I’ve never seen you go shopping before,” with emphasis on the words “never” and “you.” It is safe to assume she is in disbelief that her husband has
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