HCOM 214: Interpersonal COMM & Conflict

Learning interpersonal communication skills to improve every part of our lives

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Romantic Partners: Prompt #8

Without a doubt, different technology methods of communication have impacted our lives in how we communicate with others on a daily basis, whether we are communicating with family, friends, and/co-workers. Particularly, text messages, emails, and social media platforms are the most effective methods of technology communications that enables to communicate with another party in practical way; and we tend to have less in-person communication with others. In my daily routine, I find myself using more methods of communications at all times in comparison to face-to-face conversations. However, when it comes to romantic relationships, I do put limits of when I should or shouldn’t use technology communications vs. face-to-face communication. From my experience, when I initiate a romantic relationship, I do utilize text messages to invite someone I like, but when the relationship is going more serious I do consider a face-to-face communication to be more effective. This is because it demonstrates to the other person that you are putting aside sometime of your busy schedule to spend time with your loved one and it definitely shows the other party your interest in the relationship. I tend to avoid posting personal thoughts and personal moments on social media since there’s always drama due to others perspectives which may hurt my relationship. I personally think that although now days we have great technology methods of communication that have made our lives much easier as we practically have control on our communication with others instantly with the use of our cellphones as compared to old days, but I think that all these great technology devices will never equal the same value to a conversation in a face-to-face communication way. This is because the direct contact communication enables to get a sense of facial and body expressions which through technology means this opportunity can be missed. Regardless of the type of conversations you have with others, I think that the face-to-face approach has more meaning in value in a romantic relationship, even for tough moments in the relationship. I personally, would never terminate a relationship using communication technology, even if I didn’t have no more interest in the relationship. This is because using a technology devise vs. a direct contact would demonstrate the other party that I didn’t had the courage to have a face-to-face conversation in expressing why I am making the decision to terminate a relationship.

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Family Members: Prompt #1

Without a doubt traditions reflect the essence and unity of families. Ever since I remember, my parents have inculcated to my siblings and I that holidays are times to spend together as a family not simply a vacation time to have fun on its own. Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year are the most important days of the year to my family. Not only because it’s a holiday in where we typically have the day off and get to eat a lot of our traditional foods, but because we get to enjoy together as a family. Yet, during these times of the year, it is when most of my relatives have the strongest communication too. The fact that everyone works and are busy throughout the year, we hardy get to interact or converse with the family at once. Therefore, when it gets to these holidays, I see them as the “get together” as it is when we value the importance to get together as a family because these are times in which the majority of the relatives are together including my parents, siblings, nephews, nieces, cousins, uncles, etc.

When it comes to communication, in preparation to these holidays my relatives are in constant communication to organize the “get together.” The preparation can get started when we are all deciding where we are hosting our “get together,” what kind of food we are having, and if it requires traveling, deciding how to carpool. The preparation might sound stressful, but at the end of the day, the take away is that everyone’s opinion was taken into account. Also, the fact that everyone is involve in the preparation it avoids misinterpretations and keeps everyone at the same page. The lesson learned from these “get together” is that regardless of our current situations whether we are going through good or bad moments, when it comes to these holidays we all contribute and look forward in communicating on how to plan the “get together.” The fact that we are all in constant communication prior to these holidays, it enables to put in practice our listening and communication skills to reach into agreements on how to go about preparing and making happen our “get togethers.”

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Managing Conflict and Power: Prompt #1

Technology has become an essential tool in our daily basis, whether we are using our cells phones to communicate with family and friends and/or our using our laptops or cell phones to write emails to classmates, teachers, and coworkers. In anyway, now a day we tend to use technology devices as the main method of communication instead of conversing face to face.

From experience, there was one incident in where I used technology incorrectly to handle a conflict with one of my sisters. Everything started because I had to borrow my sister’s car to go get a haircut because my car was taken to the dealer for oil change service. When I borrowed my sister’s car, she had burly started her run, which typically takes her about an hour to get back home. Since the barber’s shop is just a few blocks from my home, I decided to take my sister’s car and send her a text message letting her know that I took her car, but did not specify where I was going. Yet, it was not that I didn’t wanted to share where I was going, but because I thought that I was not going to take long to get my haircut and I assumed that by the time I would get back home, my sister was probably still at her run. When I entered the barber’s shop, I noticed that there was a lot of people in front of me waiting for service. Though, I decided to stay since I was already there, plus it was Friday afternoon and didn’t felt like having to go back during the weekend. Also, while waiting for my haircut, I came across a long-time no see friend and he invited to go watch a basketball game at her house. I really got excited of my acquaintance with my old friend that as soon I was done with my haircut I went to drop my sister’s car and send her a text apologizing of having to take her car without her permission. Afterwards, I did not have a chance to see my sister instead a was ready to go pick my car to head towards my friend’s house. Next day, I noticed that my sister was mad as she didn’t want to talk to me. To avoid making this worse, I would text her on the following days whenever I wanted to communicate with her instead of approaching her in person. This made things worse because my sister argued that I didn’t had the courage to talk to her in person. Also, the fact that I was using my cell phone for texting purposes only and not talking or having a face to face conversation got her even more mad because that made her think that I did care or would take her into account about her feelings. After this incident, it did make me realized that now with the use of our cell phones we want everything more practical and feel that because texting can also be communication that is used on real time we feel that all of what we have to say can be reflected in a text, even when resolving issues. Yet, I prove to myself wrong because my text messages to my sister were being misunderstood and make her feel that I didn’t care for her. Overall, I feel that we should still have face to face communication, especially when reaching into an agreement, because many times the intended communication via email or text can be interpreted differently from our intentions.

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NonVerbal Communication Prompt #5

After the experience of my first jobs, I had the impression that every time I would hear someone with rough and loud voice, power, possession, and superior were the words that would come to my mind right away and that often leaded me to profile peoples’ personality. This is because from experience, the people that had a loud and rough voice for some reason were individuals that played a role in authority. For example, in a couple of jobs that I had, the directors and/or supervisors had a very rough voice. The takeaway of my first conversations with them was that they seemed to be very strict and at times I felt intimidated; so as when I went to an interview and the interviewer had a loud and rough voice made me feel afraid and nervous when responding to the questions. Also, just by listening to these people, I felt that everything that they were saying something, they would be refering to a command instead of conversing with them. Therefore, every time I would listened to them, I felt like I had to pay double attention to prevent from missing something that they would probably wanted me to do.
Upon reflection, I also remember as a child that my mom would be the one that would be in-charge of all the approvals and consents at our house whether it was because my siblings and/or I wanted to buy something or permission to go and play with friends. Although I have always gotten along with my mom, I remember that once she would get into a rough and loud voice tone, to me that meant that she was being serious on something and I had to follow on her commands. Further, from these experiences, I realized that when people want to get serious, their voice tone changes to a rough and loud voice so they could be heard and feel that they have power.
However, from these experiences, I also learned that I should not judge someone based on his or her voice. This because although people have a rough or loud voice doesn’t mean I don’t have voice and/ or that they are superior than me. Instead that I should treat them first before I profile their personality. From my first job supervisors, although they seemed to be rough persons at first sight by listening to their voice, after I treated them their personalities were very different from what I had imagine them. I remember the first weeks feeling very scare to approach them because I didn’t know what their reactions were going to be. Also, I remember that on some of my first task, I was afraid to ask for their feedback because I thought that if I hadn’t done well my tasks, they would be very upset with instead of helping me. However, I prove to myself wrong. Instead any time I am in doubt of something and I want to overcome my fears, I learn that the key is to communicate them regardless of what my assumptions are.

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Active Listening: Prompt 2

To me, being heard means being taken seriously. Therefore, what I consider an effective listener is someone who immediately shows interest in what the other person is saying. This means that the listener is showing that he/she is attentive and actively make efforts to understand what I said by making immediately comments about the topic I rise-up. This really shows that my message went across to the other party correctly and the listener is interested to hear me.

A great example of the greatest active listeners in my life is my dad. He is an easy person that I can approach and start sharing my feelings, concerns, happiness, plans, etc. To me this means a lot because anytime I am facing a challenge, I right away know who is my go to go person and knowing I won’t be judge for my actions. Instead, my dad right away opens a confident environment allowing me to feel heard and can attentively give me an advice or feedback, which this enables me to get confidence in expressing myself. Further, the fact that he can just listen to me and give me solutions to my situations makes me feel that I have someone to count with on the good and bad times.

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Self-Concept Prompt #1

Viewing sport channels, searching for professional leagues games scores on the web, and listening to rap and Latino music, people can surely get a sense of what I like and enjoy doing on my spare time. This is because when it comes to media or social media, each individual tends to only see or view what they like.  I truly believe that media influences how we see ourselves and how others view us. This is because the types of television programs, websites, and the music people sees and listen are examples of peoples’ identifiers. For example, if I were to ask my classmates about who is watching the Super Bowl this weekend, most likely my classmates will identify me as a football or sport fan. Whereas, if I asked my classmates who sees TV and not specify the TV programs, I really won’t know what type of television programs they like to see. Also, if I see an Instagram or Facebook user posting more than one CNN articles on politics, this is a cue that this user likes politics and that CNN is his/her media source .