Communication Strategies: Expressiveness

In some of my books, I'm integrating much of the material on skills that I once had in boxes. But, some may still prefer the box presentation. This one is on expressiveness. Others are all labeled "Communicaton Strategies: Skill".

Expressiveness is the skill of communicating genuine involvement in the conversation; it entails, for example, taking responsibility for your thoughts and feelings, encouraging expressiveness or openness in others, and providing appropriate feedback. As you can easily appreciate, these are the qualities that make a conversation exciting and satisfying. Expressiveness includes both verbal and nonverbal messages and often involves revealing your emotions and your normally hidden self—bringing in a variety of interpersonal skills noted earlier.

Communicating Expressiveness. Here are a few suggestions for communicating expressiveness.

<  Vary your vocal rate, pitch, volume, and rhythm to convey involvement and interest. Vary your language; avoid clich├ęs and trite expressions, which signal a lack of originality and personal involvement.

<  Use appropriate gestures, especially gestures that focus on the other person rather than yourself. Maintain eye contact and lean toward the person; at the same time, avoid self-touching gestures or directing your eyes to others in the room.

<  Give verbal and nonverbal feedback to show that you’re listening. Such feedback promotes relationship satisfaction.

<  Smile. Your smile is probably your most expressive feature and it will likely be much appreciated.

<  Communicate expressiveness in ways that are culturally sensitive. Some cultures (Italian, for example) encourage expressiveness and teach children to be expressive. Other cultures (Japanese and Thai, for example) encourage a more reserved response style. Some cultures (Arab and many Asian cultures, for example) consider expressiveness by women in business settings to be inappropriate; in other cultures it would be inappropriate for women not to be expressive.


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ICT said...

Always find it hard to express myself. So basically not everyone can do it.

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