Connecting with others and forming relationships is what interpersonal relationships is all about.
I. Connecting with Others via Interpersonal Communication
a. Interpersonal communication- creating and sharing meaning between persons who are in a relationship.
a.i. Competent interpersonal communicators adjust and communicate effectively with a variety of people from diverse backgrounds in order to establish short or long-term relationships.
b. Relationship is an association between at least two people, which may be described in terms of intimacy or kinship.
II. Motivation and Need to Form Relationships
a. Uncertainty Reduction Theory
a.i. Suggests that when we meet others to whom we are attracted, our need to know about them tends to make us draw inferences from observable physical data.
a.i.1. Urge or desire to reduce our uncertainty about those individuals motivates our desire for further communication with them.
a.i.2. Three stages of initial interaction
a.i.2.a. Entry phase: physical appearance, physical attractiveness and economic or social status.
a.i.2.b. Personal phase: less constrained; more openness
a.i.2.c. Exit phase: future is decided (Example page 349)
b. Social Information processing theory
b.i. Suggests that electronic-mediated communication relationships grow only to the extent that people first gain information about each other and use that information to form impressions. (Example page 350)
c. Social Exchange Theory
c.i. A theory based on the assumption that people consciously and deliberately weigh the costs and rewards associated with a relationship or interaction.
c.i.1. Benefit: anything that is perceived to improve our self-interest.
c.i.2. Costs: negative things or behaviors that we perceive to be not beneficial to our self-interest.
d. Fundamental Interpersonal Relations Orientation Theory- a theory that provides insight into our motivation to communicate; consists of three needs that motivate communication
d.i.1. Affection: feel likable or loveable (social groups, dating services)
d.i.1.a. Underpersonal- avoid emotional commitment; don’t let others get close
d.i.1.b. Personal- deal effectively; poised
d.i.1.c. Overpersonal- need affection badly
d.i.2. Inclusion: feel significant and worthwhile
d.i.2.a. Undersocial- don’t like being around other people; find communicating threatening
d.i.2.b. Oversocial- cannot stop themselves from communicating and getting involved and communicating
d.i.2.c. Social- satisfied need for inclusion; can handle situations with or without others; rarely feel uncomfortable
d.i.3. Control: derived from responsibility and leadership
d.i.3.a. Abdicrats- extremely submissive to others
d.i.3.b. Autocrats- never have enough control
d.i.3.c. Democrats- control needs essentially satisfied
III. Relationships: Getting to Know others and Ourselves
a. Once we are motivated to begin a relationship, we then begin the process of getting to know ourselves and others.
b. Learning through face-to-face relationships
b.i. Small talk- casual conversation that is often impersonal and superficial, including greetings, comments about the weather, newsworthy events, or trivia.
c. Connecting online (Facebook, MySpace)
IV. Self-disclosure in Relationships
a. Relationships grow further and more intense through self disclosure.
a.i. Self-disclosure is voluntary sharing of information about the self that another person is not likely to know
b. Self-disclosure the process
b.i. Johari Window Model- a graphic model describing human interaction that is useful because it depicts