Nonverbal Communication: Journal Entry From an Early Essay

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Nonverbal Communication: Journal Entry

From an early age, I was urged to always make eye contact when I spoke to others. I feel that making eye contact is natural, given that it seems people are more willing to listen to what you have to say, if you gaze directly into their face and eyes. I have since learned that eye contact is not commonly practiced in all cultures as a way of indicating sympathy and rapport with a speaker, but it feels natural to me because that it how I was raised. Kinesthetically, I have also noted that a relaxed and informal style is preferred in our culture. But I have been accused by some people (such as my parents) of putting my hands in my pockets, slouching, and not seeming sufficiently attentive in my posture. Although this may be acceptable in everyday conversation, I know that it is not always a good thing to take such a demeanor in formal settings, such as a job interview. However, I do try to have a firm handshake when I interact with people during a job interview! In terms of my clothing and physical appearance, I would say that is the most important aspect of dressing is suiting one's appearance to the needed occasion.
Dressing casually without 'dressing down' (wearing jeans but not ripped jeans) when going to class, knowing when to put on semiformal attire to go out to eat, and having at least one nice business suit are all aspects of using personal comportment to convey an effective message, either of not being overly vain yet being respectful.

I am not a tactile-phobic person. I do not mind if someone touches me while I am speaking to them, although I tend not to be extremely demonstrative and hug and kiss people frequently, unless I am very intimate with them. Some of my friends from Southern European cultures, for example, think nothing of kissing someone on the cheeks in greeting. This type of behavior, while acceptable in their culture, would not be acceptable in my household. Rating the effectiveness of nonverbal culture is thus highly context-dependent. Another distinction I often see which seems rooted in cultural differences is that of proximity, or….....

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