Non-Verbal Communication Memo


To: Lecturer

From: Author’s Name

March 9, 2016

Non-Verbal Communication

First impressions, such the body language, posture and eye contactare non-verbal cues, which help in communication. My body languagethrough facial expressions, gestures and vocal characteristics mainlyportray my feelings of anger, happiness and empathy to others. Forexample, I often raise my voice during an argument to make my pointsclear. At that moment, I also reveal the essence of raising the toneof my voice to the listeners. Maintaining eye contact and bodymovement helps in showing what I want and feel should be right in adebate, discussion or argument. Additionally, I usually combinegestures, voice characteristics, and facial expressions whenever Iwant to make my point clear and at the same time express my feelingsof anger or happiness.

Body language signs such as a smile, a firm handshake and low tonesare some of the positive verbal cues that other people use to revealtheir feelings to me. A smile accompanied by the right gestures helpsin conveying the message and at the same time revealing somebodyelse’s feelings. For example, in a class setting, I am always happyabout the students who give me a firm handshake in the morningbecause they demand their attention in a positive way. However,people who normally get too close to me when talking or touch anypart of my body irritates me even if they are always trying to revealtheir feelings. In other words, they interfere with my personal spaceand privacy, which makes me feel uncomfortable.

In Canada and the United States, delayed eye contact is deemedappropriate in seeking attention and conveying interest to the otherparty. However, in most Asian countries especially the Muslimculture, intense eye contact between opposite genders is consideredinappropriate. In African cultures, a limp handshake is usual whilein some European and American countries, a longer and warmerhandshake is the standard way of greeting someone. In a Chinesebusiness meeting, it is not acceptable to restrict your personalspace. People in China often touch each other when engaging in aconversation unlike in America where people demand more space whiletalking.

As part of critical thinking, I think it is unfair to be evaluated orassess someone based on the non-verbal cues he/she is using. This isbecause listening is a combination of paying attention to the wordsbeing said as well the interpretation of the body language signs thataccompany the words. Some people’s body language signs are gainedduring their upbringing, for example, hugging and non-intimatetouching among the Americans are some of the non-verbal cuesexhibited even by children. Therefore, laying emphasis on thenon-verbal cues in critical thinking may distort the right messagesent to you. In other words, some body language signs are common insome cultures and do not necessarily reveal peoples’ feelings andhence these signs should not be relied upon to interpret the message.

I think it is nearly impossible to change the way I feel by changingmy body language. Non-verbal cues are usually a response from thestimulus generating the feelings of happiness, anger or satisfaction.Therefore, during a conversation, I cannot easily adjust to the bodylanguage that is deemed right so that I can change my feelings.Instead, I can only change my body language to suit the conversationand withhold my feelings for the benefit of the listeners. Bodylanguage usually results from intermittent and intense feelingsinside someone, which causes excitement, satisfaction orunsatisfaction.