Interpersonal Communication

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Student Question

Why are these statements about communication—"Communication will solve any problem," and "More communication is always better"—false?

Expert Answers

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When reflecting on how your personal experiences show that these myths are false, consider times in your life in which you have seen communication operate differently. For example, consider the myth that “more communication is always best.” There are lots of times in life in which too much communication can be confusing, distracting, or overwhelming. For example, when starting college, receiving too much communication about how all the programs at the school work could be overwhelming. Instead, receiving only the critical information that you need to know about your program can help in the adjustment process. Also, consider how doctors tend to only communicate exactly what they know for sure about a condition to their patients. This prevents them from speaking too soon about what might happen and in doing so scaring or misinforming their patient.

Another one of these myths that we often see is false is that “communication will solve any problem.” There are many situations in which this is not the case, from solving problems at work to solving problems in interpersonal relationships. For instance, you might have had a romantic relationship in which there were problems that prevented you from being together that had nothing to do with communication and rather had to do with practicalities such as geographical distance.

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