Communication entails not only the verbal part but also the non-verbal part. In non-verbal, several body language cues are used to communicate. These cues are mostly perceived by vision, touch or a combination of both. They are mostly used to communicate with people with special needs (Hogan, 2003). They include:
Gestures. These are part of body language communication that involves special movement and signs depicted mostly by use of hands or legs to communicate. They are mostly used for the deaf and dumb (Christopher, 1992).
Facial expressions. This involves the use of face to express emotions like anger, surprise and anxiety. This occurs mostly involuntarily in people when something occurs (Elman, 2003).
Paralinguistic. This entails use of different tones and other language parts to depict different meanings or emotions in the narrative or information being communicated. For example, it is a universal aspect in verbal communication to use high tone full of authority when angry (Christopher, 1992).
Posture and body language. In most cases, verbal communication involves certain emotions in it. This affects the narrator thus the body and posture of the narrator may depict a great deal of what the emotion is in the narrative. For example, tension in verbal communication may cause one party to pace about and change postures as a form of restlessness caused by the tension (Argyle, 1988).
Physical appearance. This causes the people or audience have a certain initial impression and thus create a certain feeling that the verbal communication will be a success or failure.
Hap tics or touches. Certain touches depict different information to the person being touched. This means that some information is communicated through touch (Driver, 2010).
Eye contact. This is an important aspect of nonverbal communication. When one encounters something that he/she likes, eye contact is maintained with increased rate of blinking and pupil dilation (Driver, 2010).
These non-verbal communication cues have both positive and negative effects on communication. Some of the advantages are:
Creates confidence in the communicating parties.
Communicates what might not be easily communicated verbally.
Increases the understanding of the subject matter in the communication.
Increases demonstration. (Pease, 2004.)
However, it might cause some negative effects as well on communication. These negative effects include:
It might instill fear in people.
Might create a negative prejudgment making the audience to switch off even before listening to the information being passed across.
It reduces the communication content and might disorient the actual course of communication. (Andersen, 2007)
Hogan, K. 2003. Can’t get Through 8 Barriers to Communication, Pelican Publishing Company.
Christopher K. 1992, Assessments of the emotional states of others: Conscious judgments versus emotional contagion. Journal of social and clinical psychology
Pease B. 2004. The Definitive Book of Body Language, NY: Bantam Books
Driver, J. 2010. You Say More Than You Think. New York, NY: Crown Publishers.
Elman, P. 2003. Emotions revealed: Recognizing faces and feelings to improve communication and emotional life. New York: Times Books
Andersen, P. 2007. Nonverbal Communication: Forms and Functions, Waveland Press.
Argyle, M. 1988. Bodily Communication, International Universities Press