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Summarize the passage in about 100 words.

 
The most basic form of communication is nonverbal. This includes body language and facial expressions. It differs from verbal communication in fundamental ways. For one thing, it is less structured, which makes it difficult to study. A person cannot pick up a book on nonverbal language and master the grammar of gestures and a vocabulary of expressions that are so common in our culture. Nonverbal communication also differs from verbal communication in terms of intent and spontaneity. We generally plan our words and are fairly careful with what we say. But when we communicate nonverbally, we sometimes do so unconsciously. We do not mean to raise an eyebrow or blush, but these actions more often than not come naturally. Often without our consent, our emotions are written all over our faces.

Although nonverbal communication is unplanned, it may have more impact than verbal communication. Nonverbal cues are especially used in conveying feelings. They account for ninety five percent of the emotional meaning that is exchanged in any interaction. In fact, nonverbal communication is so powerful that it actually releases mood-altering chemicals in the sender as well as in the receiver. Smiling makes us feel happier, whereas guarded gestures tend to make us hostile and less receptive. This fact was confirmed by an experiment involving two groups of college students who attended the same lecture. One group, the experimental group, was told to listen to the lecture with their arms tightly folded across their chests and their legs uncrossed - like a barrier; the second group was told they could listen to the lecture in any way they pleased. Most of them sat relaxed and listened to the lecture. When tested after the lecture, the experimental group retained nearly 40 percent less information compared to the second group who had been more relaxed.

One reason for the power of nonverbal communication is its reliability. For instance, most people can deceive us more easily with words than they can with their bodies. Words are relatively easy to control; body language, facial expressions and vocal characteristics or tone of voice are not. By paying more attention to verbal cues, we can detect dishonesty or affirm a person's honesty. Not surprisingly, we have more faith in nonverbal cues than we do in verbal messages. If a person says one thing but transmits a conflicting message nonverbally, we almost invariably believe in the nonverbal signal. To a great degree then, an individual's credibility as a communicator depends on nonverbal messages his body is transmitting.

If you can read other people's nonverbal messages correctly, you can interpret their underlying attitudes and intentions and respond appropriately. Successful people generally share this ability. A recent study involved 1000 schoolchildren who were tested on their ability to determine whether people were happy, sad, angry and so forth on the basis of their expressions. The students who scored the lowest on the test were among the least popular in their class and were also less successful academically, even though their intelligence rating were just as high as the other children. The inability to read other people's reactions prevented them from adjusting their behavior to improve their relationships.

Nonverbal communication can be efficient from both the sender's and the receiver's standpoint. You can transmit a nonverbal message without even thinking about it, and your audience can register the meaning unconsciously. At the same time, when you have a conscious purpose, you can achieve it more economically with a gesture than you can with words. A wave of the hand, a wink, a pat on the back, a lift of the eyebrows are all efficient expressions of thoughts. Although nonverbal communication can stand alone, it frequently works hand in hand with verbal language. Our words carry part of the message and nonverbal signals carry the rest. Together, the two modes of communication make a powerful team, augmenting, reinforcing and clarifying each other.

 
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Answer
 
Nonverbal communication is important because it used to convey feelings. It is so powerful that mood-altering chemicals are released from both parties which are communicating. it is reliable because it exposes people's honesty. Once can tell if a person is lying from his body language, not from his words. The ability to read nonverbal messages allows one to understand a person's underlying attitude and intentions. This enables one to respond appropriately, thus improving relationships. Apart from complementing and reinforcing verbal messages, nonverbal cues also convey messages efficiently as they are often transmitted unconsciously through body language and facial expression. (100 words)
     
spontaneity   happening or done in a natural, often sudden way, without any planning or without being forced
     
cue   a signal
     
 
 

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