Non-verbal communication refers to gestures, facial expressions, tone of voice, eye contact (or lack thereof), body language, posture, and other ways people can communicate without using language.      

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Non-verbal communication can be very helpful when we are operating in  a different culture. even throw we might not be well versed in a language, we can use our body gestures to support our expressions.

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Non-verbal communication is an important   aspect of the classroom and the workplace. it shows how you listen, look, and react while interacting with your classmates or co-workers. for effective communication,

Types of Non-Verbal Communication-:

There are many different types of non-verbal communication. They include:

  • Body language: Body language is the way someone situates their body naturally depending on the situation, the environment and how they are feeling. For example, someone might cross their arms if they are feeling angry or nervous.

  • Gestures: While gestures vary widely across communities, they are generally used both intentionally and unintentionally to convey information to others. Someone in the United States might display a “thumbs up” to communicate confirmation or that they feel positively about something, for example.

  • Facial expressions: One of the most common forms of nonverbal communication is facial expressions. Using the eyebrows, mouth, eyes and facial muscles to convey can be very effective when communicating both emotion and information.

  • Touch: Some people also use touch as a form of communication. Most commonly, it is used to communicate support or comfort. This form of communication should be used sparingly and only when you know how the receiving party feels about touch. It should never be used to convey anger, frustration or any other negative emotions in the workplace.

  • Physiological changes-: for example, you may sweat or blink more when you are nervous, and your heart rate is also likely to increase. These are almost impossible to control consciously and are therefore a very important indicator of mental state.

Pros and Cons of Non-verbal Communication-:

Pros of non-verbal communication

  • Complementary: Non-verbal cues complement a verbal message by adding to its meaning. You can pat someone you offended at the back as you say sorry to him or her.
  • Easy presentation: Information can be easily presented in non-verbal communication through using visual, audio-visual and silent means of non-verbal communication.

  • Substituting: Non-verbal message may substitute for the verbal message especially if it is blocked by noise, interruption, long distance etc. for example; gestures-finger to lips to indicate the need for quiet, facial expressions- a nod instead of a yes.

  • Accenting: Often used to accent a verbal message. The verbal tone indicates the actual meaning of the specific words.

  • Repeat: Used to repeat the verbal message (e.g. point in a direction while stating directions.)

Cons of non-verbal communication:

Despite of advantages of non-verbal communication, it is not free from its limitations or disadvantages which are:

  • Vague and imprecise: Non-verbal communication is quite vague and imprecise. Since in this communication, there is no use of words or language which expresses clear meaning to the receiver. No dictionary can accurately classify them. Their meaning varies not only by culture and context but by the degree of intention.

  • Continuous: It is possible to stop talking in verbal communication, but it is generally not possible to stop nonverbal cues. Also, spoken language has a structure that makes it easier to tell when a subject has changed, for instance, or to analyze its grammar. Nonverbal does not lend itself to this kind of analysis.

  • Multi-channel: while watching someone’s eyes, you may miss something significant in a hand gesture. Everything is happening at once and therefore it may be confusing to try to keep up with everything. Most of us simply do not do so, at least not consciously.

 

we should always follow the points mentioned below while using Non-verbal Communication-:

  1. Use a variety of appropriate facial expression while communication with people.

  2. Try to make eye contact while speaking in the classroom, during presentation, discussion, etc. as you contact fine confidence  and willingness to connect.

  3. Very your vocal pattern throughout the presentation and avoid a moderately  monotonous vocal range.

  4. Avoid defensive gestures, like holding hands in front of your chest or putting them behind the back.

  5. Refrain from fidgeting with your hands and your clothes.

  6. During a presentation, always stand straight and move around with   ease  and assurance.

Non-verbal communication helps people to:

 

  1. Reinforce or modify what is said in words-:

    For example, people may nod their heads vigorously when saying “Yes” to emphasise that they agree with the other person. A shrug of the shoulders and a sad expression when saying “I’m fine, thanks” may actually imply that things are not really fine at all!

  2. Convey information about their emotional state-:

    Your facial expression, your tone of voice, and your body language can often tell people exactly how you feel, even if you have hardly said a word. Consider how often you have said to someone,

    “Are you OK? You look a bit down.”

    We know how people feel from their non-verbal communication.

  3. Define or reinforce the relationship between people-:

    If you have ever watched a couple sitting talking, you may have noticed that they tend to ‘mirror’ each other’s body language. They hold their hands in similar positions, they smile at the same time, and they turn to face each other more fully. These movements reinforce their relationship: they build on their rapport, and help them to feel more connected.

  4. Provide feedback to the other person-:

    Smiles and nods tell someone that you are listening and that you agree with what they are saying. Movement and hand gestures may indicate that you wish to speak. These subtle signals give information gently but clearly.

  5. Regulate the flow of communication-:

    There are a number of signals that we use to tell people that we have finished speaking, or that we wish to speak. An emphatic nod, and firm closing of the lips indicates that we have nothing more to say, for example. Making eye contact with the chair of a meeting and nodding slightly will indicate that you wish to speak.            

Source at: https://www.skillsyouneed.com/ips/nonverbal-communication.html

Functions of nonverbal communication

 some functions of nonverbal communication are as follows:

  • we use nonverbal communication to emphasize on verbal communication. for example, in head nod or a head shake  reinstates the verbal message of 'Yes' or 'No'. if your mother asks you whether you want to eat breakfast, you might verbally say 'yes' and at the same time nod your head.  

  • we use nonverbal communication to replace oral communication using behaviours that are easily recognised by others such as a wave, a head nod, or a handshake. for example, if someone asks you questions, instead of a verbal yes, you may choose to nod your head only.

  • we use non verbal communication to communicate emotions. for example, it is easy to sport when your friends sad.  Her drooping Shoulders ( a body gesture)  would be indicative of her emotion.

  • we use non verbal communication to give feedback to the other persons. During a discussion, if the audience is  smiling and   nodding, it shows that they agree with what the speaker is saying. certain hand gestures may indicate that the listener wishes to speak. these  subtle signals provide transparent information.

 

 Non -verbal practice to follow during an interview-:

 An interview is a crucial part of the recruitment process, hands, how we communicate and display our posture during  the interview  makes a significant difference.

 Let us a look at some effective non-verbal practices we should keep in mind during interview.

 

  • Maintain eye contact with  the interviewer for a few seconds at a time.

  • Smile and nod (  at  appropriate times) when the interviewer is talking.

  • Be polite and keep an event on to your speech. don't be too loud to quiet.

  • Do not slouch while sitting.

  • Relax and learn a little towards the interviewer so that you appear interested and engaged. do not  lean back.

  • Keep your feet on the floor and your back against the lower back of the chair.

  • Be attentive to whatever the interviewer is saying for asking.

  • Do not interrupt your interviewer.

  •  Rest  an arm on the chair or on your lap to look comfortable.

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