Communication and the Creation of the Self
2nd READING ASSIGNMENT:
Encounters, Julia T. Wood
Read Chapter 2,
and the Creation of Self
The formation of the self is a powerful, ongoing process of which very few of us are conscious of. I have spent the last twenty years studying the formation of the unfolding self. When I went to graduate school (in the late 70s), I was interested in studying why some people grew and others didnt. What I learned is that some people have a greater ability for self reflection than others. Self reflection is needed if you want to grow. To change and become a more whole (and therefore happier person), you have to want to see yourself more clearly, take full responsibility for the quality of your life, and develop skills (communication is one of the most important skills) to present yourself effectively in relationships and in the world. When you can do these things, life becomes a fascinating adventure full of wonderfully different experiences, each with its own gift to savor. (Even the most difficult life experiences can be gifts, as we will learn in our chapter on conflict communication!) I invite you in this course to learn more about yourself and to develop the skills and confidence to communicate effectively what is important to you. Theres much we can learn about ourselves and each other as we study interpersonal communication for interpersonal communication is one of the most important ways we are linked together.
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2nd LEARNING QUIZ:
Please copy this quiz and email me your responses. Remember, submit your answers no later than midnight Friday of this week.
The self is a complicated, multidimensional process of learning, growing and becoming that begins when we are born and continues until we die.
1. We develop images of ourselves, both positive and negative, based upon the messages others communicate to us. We work to live up to the positive images people present or work down to the negative images people present. Write about an example of self-fulfilling prophecy to which you lived up to:
2. Next, write about an example of a self fulfilling prophecy to which you lived down:
3. Our families are extremely influential in shaping our sense of self. Write about a direct definition that your family provided for you that has significantly shaped your sense of self:
4. Families also provide identity scripts that define your roles, how you play them, and the general progression of your life. Please comment on an identity script that your family had for you:
5. Finally, families provide us with who we are by how they interact with us (attachment styles). Please comment about the kind of attachment style in your family:
6. How have your peers begun to affect your sense of self? When did this kind of reflected appraisal begin in your life? Are you still as affected by your peers as you were when you were in high school? How has this changed for you?
7. How has your culture and/or religious upbringing shaped your sense of yourself as a man or woman? Consider the questions on page 68 in your text (Social Definitions of Masculinity and Femininity). Use these questions to reflect on your response to the question about your culture/religion as a social influence on your sense of self:
8. Our text talks about four guidelines for strengthening our self or view or our identity. List those four ways and comment on each of them in terms of your own life and life goals.
9. Select one of these Internet sites. Check it out and write a paragraph about your thoughts about the site:
http://www.ume.maine.edu/~iei/essayshu-min.html -- This web page provides a description of how one womans culture shock impacted her self concept, self esteem, and self presentation.
http://www.aber.ac.uk/~dgc/homepgid.html - This paper addresses how people go about constructing personal identities on the web.
2nd COMMUNICATION JOURNAL:
Think about your communication experiences you had this week. Keeping in mind the different ways other peoples communication affects how we feel (upper, downer, vulture), describe a communication experience you had recently where you experienced one of these three ways of being affected by how others related to you. How is this different from how you and your closest friend communicate? What kind of communication style do does your closest friend employ? Describe your communication experience as friends? What makes it something you value?
Your Communication Journal is due by midnight Friday. Please email me your journal: email@example.com
I will post a question for all of us to respond to. Make sure to check this site each week and respond at least once to the question posted.
EMAIL YOUR INSTRUCTOR WITH ANY QUESTIONS:
COMMUNITY GROUPS CHAT ROOM:
You are responsible to connect with your community each week at the time arranged.
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