The essential factor in communicative interaction is effective communication. However, many people fall short of this requirement and posses ineffective communication skills characterized by superiority complex, insensitivity, and an all knowing attitude.
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Supportive communication is the foundation of effective communication. Thus, this assessment essay analyses obstacles to supportive communication and recommendations on improving supportive communication.
Supportive communication should be effective in preserving the relationship between parties involved while effectively addressing a predicament (Heath and Bryant 289). However, this is not the case in the relationship between Jill and her parents.
The first communicative obstacle in this scenario is the incongruence approach Jill’s parent gives the problem. Though they seem supportive, this is not the case. They have a formed opinion of what is right for their daughter and are insensitive of her feelings. Jill’s mother asserts, “Political science? You never make money doing that. We only want the best for you”.
Disregarding Jill’s opinion on career choice is likely to strain this relationship. The father makes an intimidating evaluative statement about monetary sacrifices which invokes a defensiveness feeling, prompting Jill to remind them of her life.
In self defense, she says “I have to live my life, not yours!” Instead of being problem oriented, the parents personalize their comments prompting Jill to despise their suggestions (Whetten and Cameron 109). The mother asserts, “We’ve made so many sacrifices… give us respect in return.”Besides, the father makes invalidating statement which makes Jill’s choice unimportant.
He asserts, “We do understand what’s best for you…we want you to be a doctor”. Such a statement lowers confidence and worthiness and leaves the person feeling impervious, inferior and indifferent especially when supposed supportive party is fixed minded and unwilling to accept an alternative (Heath and Bryant 289).
Jill’s parents are rigid and ignorant of advising response from her. Generally, when there is ineffectiveness in supportive communication, defensiveness is unavoidable especially when a party feels attacked.
An effective supportive communication lies n the pillars of congruency, descriptivism, validation, flexibility, respect, and sensitivity (Heath and Bryant 289). Jill’s parents should be problem oriented and accept her choice after creating a free environment for discussion.
During this interactive forum, utmost congruency from both parties should characterize the decisions. Through expressing true feelings, communication congruence is likely to facilitate cordial relationship among the trio (Whetten and Cameron 109).
Moreover, it is important for the trio to acknowledge the fact that they are a family. In making statements, the parents should adopt descriptive speech about range of solutions to the presumably sticky situation which has been inactive for period of time.
The trio should be objective when expressing their feelings and focus on reaction and behavior, and not personality. Before making a statement, Jill’s parents should put into consideration the consequences of emotionally triggered utterances. Therefore, it is essential for the parents to validate their statements to win back Jill’s confidence and a sense of self worth.
When practicing supportive communication, the communicator should be flexible enough to accommodate alternative solutions to a problem. This motivates the third party to positively participate and contribute an input (Whetten and Cameron 109).
After all, supportive communication is a two way channel in which respectful communication travels. Rather than assuming the feeling of superiority, Jill’s parents should learn to exercise flexibility before making absolute resolutions to divert any indifference feeling which may overwhelm their daughter.
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Jill should internalize conjunctive communication characterized by free flow of information among the trio. Despite her opinion of the impervious parents, Jill ought to have made owned statements when she discovered her career.
Conclusively, supportive communication is effective when the third party’s assumes the role of being a supportive listener. However, applying these attributes depends on the communicative skills of an individual.
It is fair to identify own inaccuracies in communicating. When these attributes are effectively used, counseling and coaching, which relies on supportive communication, may carry positive feedback and boost life skills.
Whetten, David Allred and Kim S. Cameron. Developing Managerial Skills. New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 2007. Print.
Heath, Lawrence and Bryant Jennings. Human Communication Theory and Research Concepts, Contexts, and Challenges. London: Routledge, 2000. Print.