Paralinguistic’s is the study of the non verbal elements in speech such as the pitch, tone and the like. Therefore, it focuses on everything but the words or the content of your speech. Psychologist Albert Mehrabian estimates that about 40 percent of the influence of a conversation is based on its non semantic elements. Through special focus on the non verbal part of speech you can be perceptive about the true moods and intentions of people and leave a great impact on them.
How Useful is the Paralinguistic Control?
When someone falsely accuses you, the way you react speaks volumes. An activity in a psychology classroom showed how certain reactions can save you from or land you into trouble. A handful of students were randomly asked to step in front of their class and were given the task of dealing with the false blame of committing a murder. Scenario stated that they had to say the word ‘I did not do it’ in a controlled and convincing manner. Majority of them screamed and said the phrase angrily. However, the right way to fend off the incoming character assault was to state ‘I did not do it’ in a calm, relaxed and assertive tone.
Paralinguistic elements convey a great deal of information about the personality traits of an individual. When you open your mouth, you are putting a piece of your character out there. You give out reasons for people to build an impression about you. Hence, it is an important part of you and maintaining it can really help you win people over.
Note: There are many individuals who would state ‘I am what I am.’ They would probably roll their eyes when told to manage their speech, because they do not want to win people over. Look at this situation in this way – you are modifying a certain element of your personality for your own benefit, and winning people over is only a byproduct.
One of the key elements in leading a successful life is being assertive. Seems too simplistic an idea? Well, when you learn to get what you want, without being offensive to anyone, you easily move forward in life. You will automatically have a higher self-esteem and a better sense of self. Look around and see all the entrepreneurs if you wish to uncover how assertiveness leads to great success.
Remember, to have an assertive edge to your voice, you do not need to be disrespectful or harsh. Assertiveness can be achieved with politeness as well. If you really wish to practice assertiveness, start off with a salesperson at a store. When they are trying to convince you to buy something, be assertive in telling them that the product does not fulfill your requirements. This will help you build confidence in learning to say no and conveying a differing viewpoint, politely, to someone else.
Keeping One Eye on the Situation
Answer the following question: How will you react when someone slightly bumps into you? Upon reading the question your mind is likely to run into several different directions and make up scenarios where someone might bump into you. Well, your reactions, what you say, and how you say it depends a lot on the situation.
There are times when the situation demands the most polite reaction ever. Imagine if the person who bumped into you on the street was actually heading towards a job interview. He is unemployed and the documents clutched in his hand just fell on the street. If you turn back and give him a crude piece of your mind, you will not win anyone over. You are likely to be judged in a negative light by others and later on, you will probably feel bad about the incident yourself.
If you react politely, picked up his documents and asked him if he was doing fine – it would definitely win him over. The positive energy emanated from you would have a calming effect on his unrest. Your tone would probably make him think ‘the world goes around because of these good characters.’
Note: Although you were polite to a stranger in the above situation, there is a great charm in bringing a smile on a random face. Additionally, these tiny deeds not only help you win others over, they also increase your self-image and self confidence.
Arguments and their Management
Mostly when a heated debate is going on, one of the first things we notice are the raised voices and the rough tones. When in an argument, the events unfold in a manner that directs the conversation to bitter ends. However, if you really wish to win an argument, you should make your point stronger and not raise your voice.
Have you heard the phrase ‘to belittle you have to be little’? During arguments, the tone and the messages do take a hostile turn. If you control the tone and the message, there are high chances for you to win the argument and the hearts of individuals involved in testing their mental muscle.
Try the following. We often get into small arguments that turn into major fights. Try to control your emotions during the fight and continue to tell yourself to stay calm. Wear your armor of grace and reflect back every negative comment that comes in flying towards you. When it is your turn to throw in an attack, no matter how impolite and aggressive the other individual sounds, your task is to maintain your calm. Reply back in a relaxed tone and see how you shock the other person and cool down their temper. There, you have won over yet another individual.
Everyone is fighting a battle of their own, so always be nice. By being gentle, you actually do yourself a favor. If your tone is aggressive, that indicates that your temper is bad. When you get angry, you affect your health in many negative ways. Therefore, when you change your tone, you actually manage your mood and in return modify the mood of others as well.