Am I Making Myself Clear?
“Communication leads to community, that is, to understanding, intimacy and mutual valuing.” (Rollo May) Throughout history men have strived to find an effective way of communicating, but why? Communication is the basis of our lives, our actions, and our words. Anything we do or say stems from what people have communicated to us or what we have communicated to others, without the ability to communicate our thoughts and feelings to others, our everyday lives would be impossible. Thus the chatter of humans, or what we call communication, plays an integral role in all our lives.
What is communication? According to Bebe and Ivy (1950), communication is the process of acting on information. In the simplest terms communication is acting on stimulus, which makes it almost impossible not to communicate. The simple act of smiling, communicates to others that you are happy, even if you don’t say you’re happy your smile does the entire work showing others your true feelings. Even deliberately trying not to communicate, communicates to others that you are not in a talkative mood. Communication happens be it with your dog or with other people.
Communication with others or Human Communication is the process of making sense out of the world and sharing that sense with others by creating meaning through the use of verbal and non verbal messages. (Bebe and Ivy 1950) In essence Human Communication is sharing our thoughts and experiences with others. Having a conversation, yelling fire, or sobbing quietly in the corner, all communicates a message to others. Having an intimate conversation with your best friends conveys your feelings, yelling fire alerts others of impending danger, and crying quietly in a corner shows you are not in the best of moods. In the most basic of terms all human behavior can be considered communication.
But why study human communication? Studying human communication helps us better understand the world we live in, communication encompasses every facet of our lives, so it would be natural to study it. Communication helps improve employability, relationships, and health. (Bebe and ivy 1950) Knowing exactly what to say in an interview can one day ensure financial security, having an open line of communication can strengthen weak relationships, and being able to express pain can save your life. A general understanding of communication is central to success and well being in all our lives.
From interpreting dog barks, to having a conversation, communication is the catalyst that keeps society running. Communication builds community, joins neighbors and friends, and helps us understand the world we live in. Am I making myself clear? A short simple phrase, but it means much more then what is being said. It is inevitable for humans to want to communicate, when we are born we cry, when we grow older we talk, it is simply natural and right. “The way we communicate with others and with ourselves ultimately determines the quality of our lives.” (Anthony Robbins) It is our choice, to simply live life or to thrive in life, the difference is how we communicate.
Bebe and Ivy, S and D (1950). Communication principles for a lifetime.
Boston, MA: Pearson Education Inc.