week3.docx - OVERCOMING COMMUNICATION APPREHENSION...

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OVERCOMING COMMUNICATION APPREHENSION Communication apprehension (CA) specifically, occurs when an individual experiences "fear or anxiety associated with either real or anticipated communication with another person or persons" (McCroskey, 1977, p. 78). We have already considered the complexity of communication. It is an exchange of ideas or information that is symbolic and involves not only words but also vocal and visual elements that accompany the spoken words. It is an interactive process, a give and take in which people exert influence on each other and are engaged in the process of negotiating a meaning and an understanding between them. Based on these factors communication can succeed or fail. If this course does its job, it should help you improve in these two main areas, and having achieved this level of understanding, we should succeed more often in the ways we communicate with others. One big barrier to effective, successful communication, is communication apprehension. Some people have a fear of speaking in certain situations whether it is to one person, such as in an interview, to a small group of people such as in a meeting at work, or as a speaker on a public forum. Conquering Fear and Anxiety There are steps to overcoming communication apprehension. Fear of speaking to a boss, in an interview, to a small or large group means that you are not confident about yourself or about what you are about to say. Anxiety before speaking can be caused by introversion , shyness or lack of preparation. Many, many people fear public speaking. Build Self Confidence Self-confidence comes from self-concept, self-image, and self-esteem, which we have already researched and discussed. You must find the reason that you do not feel that you are up to the communication situation and fix that problem. This is probably based on the way you perceive yourself. Do you look up to the task? Do you speak well? Do you know what you are going to talk about? Look Appropriate for the Communication Occasion Consider your task and the audience, you don't want to look distinctly different from the audience that you target. If it is a business occasion, dress the part. If it is an entertainment or social occasion, reflect this, but don't go overboard. Speak well. Relax, Be yourself. These are the first rules for delivering a good speech. You don't have to be a professional speaker. You would be surprised how accommodating an audience is when they detect that you are being yourself. It is the most natural for you to use in a speaking event, so you will not make mistakes based on trying to speak like someone else. The listeners will eventually get used to your mode of speech and start focusing on WHAT you are saying.
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