How words have the power to create and affect attitude, behavior and perception, 3 understanding emotional intelligence and how it affects your interpersonal relationships, 4 Develop strategies for empathetic listening, and 5 Strategies for managing interpersonal conflict.
Your success in your relationship depends on learning these outcomes. . The principles and misconceptions in effective interpersonal communications There are basic principles that need to be learned and misconceptions that need to be cleared up in order to have effective interpersonal communication, Kathy Sole (2011). Effective communication can be achieved by connecting, sharing and participate in conversations with your spouse. Interpersonal communication is using the vocal element to achieve these goals. The first vocal element is the tone of your voice.
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We can control the tone of our voice which in turn will help your spouse be more receptive to understand you. When we are mad we have a tendency to have a higher tone, this can cause our spouse to be defensive. When we are tired we may speak in a lower tone, if our spouse is talking and we respond in a lower voice, our spouse may assume we are not interested in what they are saying. Another vocal element is body language our body can send messages to our spouse that can be misunderstood, the way we move our eyes, the way we sit, and the way we hold our hands can affect our message.
Our eyes can send a positive message that we are interested in what our spouse is saying by us making eye contact while they are talking. By looking way frequently or rolling our eyes can send the message that we are not listening or do not want to listen. In order to have our message understood we should make eye contact while they are talking. This way our partner is shown that they are important. The way we sit, our body posture can affect our message.
If we are sitting up we show interest in our spouses conversation, on the other hand sloping down in our chair or lying down can send the opposite message. We are not interested in what they are saying. The way we hold our hands can also affect our message. We should hold our hand still in our laps and not cross our arms. By crossing our arms we send the message that we are defensive and not willing to listen. The misconception of effective interpersonal communications is that communication only involves words, but as have pointed out visual elements also effect interpersonal communications, Sole (2011). . Words have the power to create and affect attitude, behavior, and perception Words can have a positive, neutral, or negative affect in a conversation with your spouse, by using words with a positive connotation you can affect the attitude, behavior, and perception of your spouse, Sole (2011 Just as words an have a positive meaning they can also have a negative denotative affect. In order to prevent a negative outcome it is best to increase your vocabulary meanings of words and prevent unnecessary misunderstandings.
Some words that have neutral connotation may have a negative effect on your spouse. For example my spouse refers to himself as a big guy, big is a neutral word, this is complimenting to him. Even though the word is neutral I would be offended if was called a big girl. As you get to know your spouse you will learn the words that have a negative effect, until then choose words that have positive connotation and be cautious with the neutral words. When you learn words connotation and what words have a negative effects on your spouse you can avoid them and communicate more effectively.
When words have a negative effect your spouse gets stuck on that word and stops hearing the rest of the words you are trying to communicate, so choose your words carefully to prevent offending your spouse. 3. Emotional intelligence and its role in effective interpersonal relationships Emotional Intelligence is the ability or tendency to perceive, understand, regulate, and harness emotions adaptively in the self and in others, Nicola S. Schuster (2001). Having emotional intelligence can help you and your spouses have empathy, social skills, cooperative responses, and emotional intelligence improves marital relationships.
Having empathy is part of emotional intelligence and is having the ability to be sympathetic to your partners needs in communicating. It includes seeing a situation from their perspective and not trying to dominate the spouse into seeing your own perspective. Seeing your spouse’s perspective does not mean you agree with them, it just shows that their view is important. Social skills is another part of emotional intelligence and is having the ability o adjust your behavior appropriate to different environments, this in turn will help your relationship.
Displaying good social skills would include knowing what to say, how to say It, and when it is appropriate to add to a conversation, this can help your spouse be proud of you. While in a social environment with your spouse having these skills can increase your ability to be accepted by others and especially accepted by your spouse. Having a Cooperative response is another part of emotional intelligence, it is having the ability to regulate and control ones emotions. When a person how’s strong emotions in conversations it gets in the way of communicating.
The other person stops communicating to react to the emotion. Controlling your emotions you and your spouse can take turns talking in a cooperative way. This can lead to better communication and a more positive relationship. Emotional intelligence has been proven in case studies to help improve marital relationships, Schuster (2001). Some people have the gift of emotional intelligence, if you and or your spouse are not gifted; you can get training in empathy, social skills, and cooperative responses in order to increase your emotional intelligence. . Strategies for empathetic listen inning There are strategies in knowing how to listen with empathy the main strategies are: listening with your ears, listening with your eyes, and listening with your heart with sincerity. Sincerity is not something that you can fake or manipulate, so learn how to be sincere. Listening with your ears is important in being an empathetic listener. We need to be attentive and seek understanding of what the other person is saying, Virginia Johnson (1993).
The best advice would be to listen and help your spouse express their emotions, give input that is helpful but not trying to suppress their emotions. Listening with your eyes you can sense body language and read the persons behavior and respond accordingly. You can see by the body language whether they are sad, fearful, and doubtful and act accordingly. Listening with your heart is hearing the words that are said, seeing and reading the body language and feeling the emotions that the person is sharing. If you are feeling the same emotions you can share those feeling together.
Crying together can show that you care as much as they do about the situation this can create a stronger bond between you both. As said empathy cannot be faked or manipulated, it is important to inform your spouse when they have strong emotions, Johnson (1993). Listening with ears, eyes, and heart is the key to showing empathy. 5. Strategies for managing interpersonal conflict It is normal to have conflict in relationships the way the conflict is resolved will determine how the relationship is affected, Sole (2011 When conflict arises it needs to be handled constructively this can strengthen a relationship.
It can bring out issues that are bothersome to the other and prevent those issues from continuing to bother the other person. Three strategies for managing conflict is, calming down, speaking non-defensively, and validating our partner, John Goodman, (1994) Calming down can prevent and argument from destroying a relationship. When couples are engaged in an escalated argument, blood is pumping, hearts are racing and one can become physiologically overwhelmed this can prevent a couple from expressing themselves and seeing their partner point of view.
It is best to take a time out to calm down; when calm the conflict can be resolved by listening and seeing each other points of the conflict. Speaking non-defensively can help your spouse understand your point of view. The point of a disagreement is to resolve the disagreement so each arson’s needs are met. Speaking non-defensively can prevent an argument from escalating into hurt feelings, hostile behavior and becoming withdrawn. Coming into a disagreement with defensive speaking only causes one to feel overwhelmed with negativity, the negativity then escalates into more hurt feelings and resolution is almost impossible.
Validating is, putting yourself in your spouse’s shoes and understanding your partners perspective of the disagreement. Letting your spouse know that their perspective is heard, even if you do not agree with their perspective, allows the door to be open for resolution. Validating our partner includes taking responsibility, apologizing, and complementing our spouse. Validating can bring a resolution to a conflict which in turn will strengthen a relationship.
Taking responsibility for our part in the conflict can help your spouse see that you are not putting all the blame on them. Conflict is not usually one sided, when we admit that we made a mistake that upset our spouse, our spouse is more likely to take responsibility for their mistakes that caused the conflict. Conflict can then be resolved. Apologizing is admitting the mistake and saying, ‘I’m sorry. This is not always easy, but by doing so will show your spouse that their feeling are heard and respected.
Your conflict will be resolved quicker with less feeling hurt and will prevent damage to the Complimenting your spouse, especially when there is tension can lighten the mood and ease you into resolution quicker. For example my spouse and I conflict on parenting. Our daughter came home with missing assignments on her progress report. Brought this to my husband’s attention and he begins to get upset with her behavior, instead of reacting to his anger, I complimented the way he handled the missing assignments of our sons and commended he try that with our daughter.
The resolution came quicker because of the compliment. Understanding that conflict is normal and calming down will prevent arguments from escalating, speaking non defensively will help you hear and express your point of view, and validating can show your partner that their perspective is heard, all of these areas are constructive ways to resolve conflict, Goodman, (1994). Resolving conflict is the key to having a strong I wish you the best of luck in your relationship. Know that if you learn these five learning outcomes you will have a better chance at success.
Key points to learn, the principles and misconceptions can help you and your spouse connect, share, and participate in conversations. Communication is not just words being spoken; it also includes vocal elements that send messages. Understand that words can have a positive and negative meaning will help you choose words that do not trigger an emotion with your spouse. Emotional intelligence can help you perceive, understand, regulate, and harness emotions while communicating. By being an empathetic listener you will be able to help your spouse through emotions, this will help you two to come closer.
Learning to handle conflict is very important, unresolved conflict can destroy a relationship. Learning how to calming down, do not speak defensively, and validating will help resolve conflict.