The greatest challenge is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Mindfulness and Interpersonal Communication | Journal of Social Issues | Find Articles

Mindfulness and Interpersonal Communication | Journal of Social Issues | Find Articles:

Judee K. Burgoon [*]

Many social problems can be traced to interpersonal communication difficulties, just as many proposed interventions to solve social ills also depend on effective interpersonal communication. This article examines three potential relationships between states of mind and social interaction followed by illustrations from research related to five exemplar social issues--developing effective programs for solving workplace communication problems, training the public to detect scams and hoaxes, reducing stereotyping and cross-cultural misunderstanding, managing interpersonal conflict, and constructing effective public health campaigns. We conclude by considering the likely inhibiting and facilitating effects of mindfulness-mindlessness on socially relevant transactions.

That seemingly "mindless" communication occurs frequently comes as no surprise to even the casual observer of human interaction. Illustrative of a remarkable capacity for humans to dissociate thought and talk are these nuggets mined from the world of work:

"We know that communication is a problem, but the company is not going to discuss it with the employees." (from a major provider of communications services)

"As of tomorrow, employees will only be able to access the building using individual security cards. Pictures will be taken next Wednesday and employees will receive their cards in two weeks." (from a computer software corporation)

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