CH. 3 Communication & Self-Concept

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CH. 3 Communication & Self-Concept. Self-concept: a relatively stable set of perceptions you have about yourself. Self-esteem: the part of your self-concept involving evaluations of self-worth. (how you feel about self-concepts qualities) - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Communication & Self-Concept

CH. 3 Communication & Self-Concept Self-concept: a relatively stable set of perceptions you have about yourself. Self-esteem: the part of your self-concept involving evaluations of self-worth. (how you feel about self-concepts qualities) High or low self-esteem has powerful effect on behavior and communication, but doesnt guarantee success. (Baumeister, 2005) We can change our self-appraisals. Positive self-esteem is often the starting point for positive communication.

1How Self-Concept DevelopsSelf-concept develops mostly from social interaction (Schmit, 2006) and 2 theories of this are:Reflected Appraisal: (shaped by others) Positive & negative evaluative messages received throughout life impact your feelings & ideas about yourselfSignificant others = persons whose evaluations are very influential: family, special teachers, close friends, those at work, those you respect, romantic partners, etc.Their opinions rank high in what you think of yourself.Social Comparison: You compare yourself to others (reference groups) to evaluate your own traits. We need realistic standards, not supreme idols, or well be unhappy. (Eating disorders, etc.)For a realistic self-concept, choose realistic comparisons. 2Self-Concept (SC): CharacteristicsSubjective: can be unrealistically favorable (a boss, young child) or harsh if feeling negative (Sturman & Mongrain, 2008) We are not good judges of our own communication skills, and this affects how we approach & respond to others. WHY?Obsolete information: Past failures or successes are out of date.Distorted information: Overly critical or the opposite by sig. othersMyth of perfection: Many parents ( or others) expect too much.Social expectations: It isnt humble to express pride in doing well. We talk about failures, but not strengths. 3Self-Concept Traits-cont.2. Flexible: We change constantly, & the self- concept must adapt to stay realistic. By 30, SC doesnt change radically w/o conscious effort. In important ways, you still change - physically, emotionally, intellectually, & spiritually (p.72).3. Resists Change: We resist revising our SC. Cognitive conservatism: We tend to seek information confirming our existing self-concept.This is true if more favorable (can become your own worst enemy) or less favorable (dont want to believe )

4SC: Self-Fulfilling Prophesy & Communication Defined: A self-fulfilling prophesy occurs when an outcome is more likely when its based on previous expectations of the event. YOU are responsible for making predictions come true.4 stages: 1) Having an expectation 2) Behaving as expected 3) Getting the expected outcome 4) Rein-forcing the original expectation (See? I knew it.)2 types of self-imposed prophesies: When expectations influence your behavior (No use to study. Ill just flunk anyway.)When observers communication of expectations influences an outcome (smart students study p.75)

5Changing Your Self-ConceptYou can change your self-concept & self-esteem, resulting in changing your communication, IF YOU CHOOSE TO DO IT.Four things are needed:Realistic Expectations: judge in terms of own growthRealistic Perception of Self: strengths & weaknessesThe Will to Change: to do the needed workThe Skill to Change: seek advice & observe models

6Presenting the Self: Identity ManagementPublic & Private Selves: We can act differently in public than in private. Perceived Self=the person you believe you are in honest, private examination, accurate or notPresenting Self= a public image we want to present to others, usually socially approvedFace=a socially-approved identity we try to preserve (Goffman, 1971) Facework= verbal & nonverbal actions used to maintain your or others presenting image(s)Front (in front of others) & backstage (alone) behavior7Traits of Identity ManagementWe construct many identities. (Communication Competency) Identity Management is collaborative. (We respond to each other.)It can be Deliberate or Unconscious.We act differently when others see & judge, & behavior sends messages, but we can act unconsciously when face is threatened. (Babies do it unconsciously.)We differ in degree of Identity Management.High self-monitors=more aware of Id. M. behavior than others. Good people readers adjust behavior to get desired reaction.They may not enjoy/experience events as much due to always analyzing/monitoring.It my be hard to tell how a high self-monitor really feels.Even high monitors may not know exactly how they feel.Neither extreme ly high nor low monitoring is ideal. FLEXIBILITY is key in successful relationships.

8Why Manage Impressions?To follow social rules in a variety of settingsTo keep a job, present a certain face despite feelings (act required way or risk being fired)To accomplish personal goals, present a face that helps you get what you want (in court, etc.)To achieve relational goals (meeting new person, first date, etc. )We all decide which face to present in each situation!

9How to Manage ID Impressions?It will depend partly on the chosen channel.Face-to-Face: use manner (words & NV actions), appearance (personal items you use to shape your image, like clothing) , & setting (physical items we use to influence how others see us, like cars) or the way we arrange our physical setting ( home, office) for enjoyment or a desired effectMediated Communication (other than face-to-face=letters, phones) Electronic messages lack some richness of V & NV channels, but can help manage impressions by allowing the sender to say difficult things and the receiver to ignore them until calm. Online commun. allows creators to make statements about who they are or how they want to be regarded.Designers of broadcasting manage identity by including or excluding information to create an effect. (Words, images, sounds)

10I.D. Management & HonestyManaging impressions doesnt always make you a liar! Part of competent communication is knowing which front to reveal in each situation.You have a choice about how to act, but ethics do enter.You are revealing part of yourself even if not a complete picture. Your and others safety and feelings matter. The intention is considered. Does it aim to hurt or make someone feel foolish?

11Self-Disclosure in I.D. ManagementSD defined: Personal information, usually not available to another, you honestly & intentionally share in a context which gives it an intimate nature.Honesty: Telling only part of what is true would not be genuine disclosure, and neither is lyingDepth: What is deep and personal to one is not always that way to another (age, academic record, income, family problems)Availability of information: Other person is not likely to know it or obtain it from other source.Context of sharing: The setting affects how personal the sharing is. (online, w/in family, etc.)True self-disclosure is rare!12Self-Disclosure Model: Social PenetrationSocial Penetration Model: (Taylor & Altman, 1987 87-88)Attempts to show breadth & depth of information shared. Breadth= The range of subjects shared is large or small. Depth = The information revealed is personal (intimate) or not (casual). At least one area must have high depth to be considered intimate.4 types of information shared:Cliches: ritualized, stock responses to social situations-How are you? Fine. How are you?)Facts: intentional, significant, and not otherwise known truths-Im a psyche major . Im in the police academy.)Opinions: your personal stand on a subject. ( I hate first dates. I think thats silly.)Feelings: expressing emotional states (Im afraid. Im a bit suspicious.)

13A Self-Disclosure Model: Johari WindowThe Johari Window is a square, divided into 4 parts: (p.89)Open= things you & others know about yourself) Blind= what you dont know about yourself but others doHidden= what you know but wont reveal to othersUnknown= information unknown to both you & others

If drawing one relationship at a time, the size of each area can change due to our mood, the topic discussed, & the relationship with the other person.

14Self-Disclosure: Benefits Benefits:CatharsisSelf-clarificationSelf-validationReciprocityImpression formationRelationship maintenance & enhancementMoral ObligationSocial InfluenceSelf-Defense

156 Risks of Self-DisclosureRejection: fear of disapproval (I love you. Well, I dont feel that way.)Negative Impression: not total rejection, but negative evaluation of you (I usually cheat to get what I want. I dont believe in cheating!)Decrease in relationship satisfaction: disclosure can affect others opinions of you & decrease satisfaction from a relationship (Id rather not see another Western movie.But, I love those!)Loss of influence: Once you disclose a weakness, you lose some control over how the other person sees you. (I have trouble telling the truth. I wont trust you again.)Loss of control: Disclosed, you lose control of the information. ( I went to reform school. I cant wait to tell someone.)Hurting the other person: If you are completely honest. (That outfit makes you look fat. Oh, I know Im just hopeless.)16Alternatives to Self-DisclosureSometimes SD is not desireable: To avoid hurting another or harming the relationship, you can try an alternative.Silence-keeping thoughts & feeling to yourselfLying-deliberately hiding or misrepresenting the truth: benevolent lie (to avoid hurting someone) vs. self-serving lie (to gain unfair advantage)honesty in important matters is usually best to preserve relationships, not every little thingEquivocation-using language w/ 2 or more possible meanings (to avoid unpleasant truth) ugly = unique painting! It saves speaker from being caught lying, reduces tension, & saves face.Hinting- more direct than equivocating, it seeks to change anothers behavior. It saves receiver/sender embarrassment.(p100-101 )17Evasion in Self-DisclosureIs it ethical?Four considerations:1) Judge the morality of the motives, not just the deception. (Buller & Burgoon, 1994) 2) Are the effects worth the cxception? (Tucker, 2005)3) Is it in the best interests of the receiver & the only effective way to behave?4) How would others respond if they knew your real thoughts and feelings?

18Self-Disclosure GuidelinesIs the other person important to you? Do you want a closer relationship? Is the risk reasonable? Consider the situation (at work?) and weigh the benefits & risks).Is the self-disclosure appropriate? For the stage of the relationship, the timing, & the situation Is the disclosure relevant to the current situation ? The setting should match the level of the disclosure: highly personal or casual?Is it reciprocated? Unbalanced disclosure creates an unbalanced relationship & problems usually result.Will effect be constructive? For the listener, your self-esteem, & the relationship19

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