How Does Perception Influence Communication?


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Rebecca Hunt Profile
Rebecca Hunt answered
The ways in which our perceptions can influence how we communicate an idea or message fall into three main categories. These categories are how perceptions of physical elements influence communication, environmental elements influence communication and learned elements influence communication.

The different perceptions that people have about each of these elements will have an impact on the way in which they can formulate and portray their ideas. Additionally, the way in which another participant in the conversation can understand and give feedback on the message is influenced by their own perceptions about the world.

  • Physical elements
Physical elements related to perception are the pieces of information that a person's ear or eye can actually take in and how the brain processes it. When looking at color physically, the perception of it is argued to be slightly different by each individual. A color blind person will not be able to have a physical perception of red and will therefore need to find an alternative way to communicate about it.

  • Environmental elements
The environmental elements of perception that can influence communication are the pieces of information that are out there, in their contexts. This means that someone trying to communicate about an event that happened to just them, will also need to communicate the environment that the event occurred in. The speaker's perception of the event is very detailed, while the listener will be working from a blank canvas.

  • Learned elements
The learned elements of perception have the most personal influences on communicated. These elements are those that are related to culture, habit and personality. These are the filters that select what we take in and how we react to it. For example, communication can be influenced by learned elements through opinion. A speaker who has a very strong opinion about a topic may filter out opposing views that attempt to prove them wrong. They may also react aggressively and passionately when talking about their opinion.

These are three of the ways in which perception can influence communication. No two individuals' perceptions of the world are the same and therefore their effects on communication are limitless.

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