The need to affiliate and communicate with others has been hypothesized as essential to our psychological well-being as is hydration and hunger are to our physical well-being (Raviester and Leary, 1995). People generally don’t realize how important social interaction is until it’s gone. That realization is amplified even more in hindsight. Everyone seeks some form of relationship throughout the duration of his or her lives. Relationships are a connection between two individuals, without being limited to just them an obvious example being a group of friends. Despite differing personality types and or any other varying social categorizations, affiliation is essential and varies in strength depending on the individual.
This small group exercise naturally recreated group interaction which is common in not only the classroom but in everyday life. When meeting new people one tends to experience a range of emotions and thoughts. My case in particular being it was a small group interaction, which tend to be more intimate often times adding anxiety but not so much in this situation. I went throughout my group experience naturally and then applied Tom Shibutani’s theory on symbolic interaction. The theory is that people act on symbolic meanings that they find in different situations. The challenge was to create share and similar meanings. The meanings are then personalized by your own interpretive process, and after to be processed by your peers to externally view our modifications. By doing this you develop your own self-concept about each individual (2010, 12). Small Group Experiences. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 12, 2010, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/Small-Group-Experiences-503287.html
My group was composed of people who missed the previous class time and had to make up the exercise later than the rest of the class. So I wasn’t surprised when I found out how cool and relax my group was as a whole. Initially the introduction was naturally awkward, but it only took a few minutes for us to already realize how similar we are to each other which eased a lot of the tension. Just in the introduction alone I realized how closely my group partners and I related, Patty Lopez especially being that we both were born in New Jersey and move to California at the same age of 10. We all went into the exercise expecting each member of the group to participate in the activity and share ideas together, which we all did. I thought everyone in my group were pretty high on pyramid of Maslow’s “Hierarchy of Needs”. Throughout the entire exercise we were all able to communicate our opinions genuinely without apprehension. I definitely followed some of the guidelines of Tom Shibutanti’s symbolic interaction theory. In the beginning I was not only adapting my self-image concept I became aware that I was which lead to inward awkwardness and lead to my decision of to throw it all out and behave naturally which I felt was similar to the people in my group on the exercise in retrospect. My group as a whole easily warmed up to each other early and continued our discussion naturally and smoothly. Admittedly I entered the exercise with a more conscious effort to not follow the guidelines on Tom Shibutani theory or Tom Scheffs theory of emotional distancing. Although the exercise went smoothly there was I hint of tension toward the end of the exercise