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Difference Between Verbal and Nonverbal Communication

Verbal vs Nonverbal Communication

Man is a social animal and cannot live alone. He lives in a society and interacts with others which is a basic necessity for him. Language plays a vital part in all interactions of a man in the form of verbal communication but there is another form of communication which is equally important in a man’s interactions with others. This is known as non verbal communication which is all about getting cues from gestures, facial expressions and eye movements of a person. There are many differences between the two forms of communication, and in some places, non verbal communication assumes more significance than verbal communication.

Have you ever seen two people not knowing each other’s language communicating with each other? Though they feel a lot of difficulty, they somehow manage to tell each other what they want to conveying the message with the help of facial expressions, eye contact and movement of hands. Why go so far as to talk about people knowing languages? A mother communicates with her newborn child through her actions and the child learns to understand her wishes in a quick time. An infant knows no language, yet a mother knows all about his child and his comfort and discomfort with the help of the movements the child makes and the manner in which he cries or emits sounds.

In an organization, it is non verbal communication in the form of written rules and regulations that gains ascendancy over verbal communication. In a workplace, often it is nonverbal communication between team members and the manager that gets work done easily and efficiently without exchange of words. A subordinate learns to understand the mood of his superior with the help of his frown or facial expression. In a classroom, a glare from the teacher is often more effective than her shouting or scolding.

Despite the effectiveness of nonverbal communication and its overwhelming use in certain conditions and situations, it is verbal communication that allows exchange of ideas, opinions, values, suggestions, and in general, the ability to connect with another person. It is all too easy when the relationship between two people is good. But when there is strain in the relationship, no verbal or non verbal communication can work to bring back normalcy.

In real life, non verbal communication takes precedence over verbal communication as the first impression that gets created is through one’s confidence and body language that is a type of non verbal communication.

In brief:

Verbal Communication and Nonverbal Communication

• Language is a vital component of communication as it helps in verbal communication through words. It helps us in conveying our thoughts, ideas, opinions, even our aspirations and frustrations.

• However, our body language, facial expressions, eye movements and gestures make up an important part of communication known as non verbal communication.

• Non verbal communication is very effective in empathic listening

• Both verbal and non verbal communications serve the same purpose though there are some situations where nonverbal communication gains ascendancy over verbal communication.


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