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Five Diagnostic Tools with Respect to Communication

Discuss About The Communication Model And Its Enlightenments?

Communication is a form of exchange of ideas between two individuals and is generally based on linguistics and behavior. However, certain modes of communication can also be used as diagnostic tools for the purpose of mental therapy to certain individuals. Hence, communication is also a powerful tool that can aid the mental healthcare of certain individuals and also the children who require special attention for regular growth and mental development (Austin & Pinkleton, 2015). There are several communication tools that are being used for therapy purposes that include Johari Window, various questionnaire type interviews and others. They have various methods of application and the selection of the tools depend on the mental condition and requirements of the individual.

In this assignment, diagnosis through communication has been discussed along with some diagnostic tools that are used widely for the therapy of the individuals.

Several communication based diagnosis tools are being used for mental therapy of individuals as well as the children who require special mental boost for their normal growth and development. Some of the diagnostic tools used for the purpose are Johari Window, Assertive Interviews, Talking Therapy, Communication Style Questionnaire and Strength Cards. All of these tools have been effectively used by therapist for curing mental problems of individuals around the world.

Johari Window – Johari Window is a diagnostic communication tool that was first developed by Joseph Luft and Harrington Ingham (hence the name JO-HARI). Johari window is generally used for those individuals who need to realize about their relationships with others as well as themselves. The Johari window technique involves four windows or quadrants namely Arena, Façade, Blind Spot and Unknown and a list of adjectives that the subjects and their peers have to choose (Fan et al., 2015). The adjectives will be chosen that are most suitable to describe the individual under therapy. The individual and his peers select the adjectives from different sets and after the completion of the selection process; the adjectives are arranged in the four quadrants. From the arrangements of the adjectives, the subject learns about the adjectives chosen by his peers and he realizes the sides of himself that was not known to him sufficiently. Hence, Johari window is more of a self-realization therapy that is used for those mental patients who fail to recognize themselves properly in terms of their own characters (Arnold & Boggs, 2015). Johari window is applied for some children who need to know about their own characteristics in order to gain self confidence that they need to grow and perform well in learning activities.

Findings of the Tools and Their Analysis

Assertive Interviews – Assertive interview is also a type of diagnostic tool of communication that is mainly applied for those individuals who do not express their feelings and thoughts frankly – they need strong assertion or pressure in order to open up and express their problems and feelings. Assertive interviews may be done through questionnaire format in slightly affected patients or through oral interviews where the subject is interviewed face to face by the physician (Greenaway et al., 2015). Assertive interviews comprise of a number of questions that are assertive in nature and the subject is to answer them correctly in order to receive the therapy. However, the number of questions and the intensity of assertion depend on the mentality of the patient and his willingness to open up in front of the physician. Assertive interviews are also used during criminal investigations and the suspects are generally put under strong assertions so that they open up and provide necessary information.

Talking Therapy – Talking therapy is another diagnostic communication tool that can be used by anybody even in a domestic environment for therapy of certain individuals. Talking therapy is basically a general communication along with some questions and answers that are being tactically used so that the subject speaks out and communicate with the therapist (Hobart-Porter et al., 2015). Talking therapy generally involves queries about issues faced by the subject for treating his psychological disorder or emotional challenges that he faces every day. Talking therapy is also termed as counseling and the entire process is done through number of sessions without intervention of any other peers or individuals.

Communication Style Questionnaire – This diagnostic tool is generally used for self evaluation of the subject though answering a series of questions that are provided to him in the form of questionnaires. Generally, the questionnaire contains a number of questions along with three or four answers, one of which will be chosen by the subject that he feels best to be his reaction to the case provided in each question (Reese et al., 2017). Based on all the answers provided by the subject, the therapist can assess and evaluate the mental condition of the subject and provide suitable recommendations accordingly. The questionnaires may be of two types – passive and aggressive. The passive questions only aim to extract general answers from the subject without providing much stress whereas the aggressive questions strongly target the inner thoughts of the subject who are then forced to speak out the truth even though unwillingly.

Two Communication Issues

Strength Cards – Strength cards are generally used for the diagnostic therapy for children who require special attention for personal and mental growth and development. These are a set of cards on which a particular strength is written along with a pictorial illustration of an animal. The cards are used by the children’s tutors and parents in order to remind them of their personal strengths in order to build up their confidence and discover their own strengths (O'hagan et al., 2014). If the children are able to discover their strengths quickly, they will be able to perform better in the learning sessions as well as learn about the moral values that are required from any individual.

In spite of the availability of all the tools and methods of communication, there still remain a number of communication issues that reduce the benefits of the same. Two communication issues faced that require development are as follows.

Language Barrier – One main problem regarding the communication diagnosis is the language barrier. Often the subject and the therapist do not share a common language and hence, the therapist is unable to convey a certain message to the subject in order perform the therapy process. In order to avoid the language barrier, often English is used as the most common language (Meuter et al., 2015). However, in certain areas that mostly includes the rural parts of some countries, the subjects do not have sufficient English vocabulary and hence, for these individuals, communication based therapy is very hard to perform. One possible solution in order to avoid extreme language barrier is to use sign languages that are generally understood by all. Another possible solution is to use certain translation softwares that are able to translate any language to a local or regional language efficiently.

Unwillingness to Cooperate – Some subjects are often extremely unwilling to cooperate with the therapist mainly due to severe mental condition. Such subjects are often very hard to break as they do not easily open up to talk and express their feelings. One possible solution is to use assertive type interviews although sometime, extreme assertion can negatively affect the subject and can further deteriorate his mental health (Shockley-Zalabak, 2014). These subjects are extremely difficult and handle and hence, suitable care should be taken and the process should be extended over a large period of time so that the subject slowly start to respond to the diagnostic communication.

Reflection on Two Recent Professional Interactions

From the analysis and personal experience from professional interactions in past 12 months, it has been found that both of these issues, i.e. language barrier and cooperation problem, are significantly present that need further development for aiding the patients who require therapy through communication tools. As mentioned above, the help of software can be taken to resolve the issues and provide better communication diagnosis. There are many translation softwares available that can translate a text in any language in no time (Tee, Low & Matizha, 2015). Again for the asserting interviews, the process can be undertaken through the use of the internet. Many people open up a lot easier in the virtual media rather that verbal communication. Hence, virtual interaction is an alternative solution to the face to face interview process if it does not work for certain subjects.

According to McCabe and Timmins (2013), the communication techniques may contradict at certain condition while listening to others as the same situation might be being faced by the individual listening to others who is having conversation about the same topic. Other possibility might be that the individual listening to others just keep it all to himself regardless of expressing views on the personal experience. He or she might not feel proper to hurt the facing individual through crossing their talks or he might think of avoiding then conflict through hiding his or her feelings or he or she might be upset at the same moment. These situations can be put on the category of the communication error and the individual could feel guilty of such mistakes and many of the individuals feel guilty without noticing that they are guilty. Price et al. (2015) explained that consequences of such communication take a toll and such miscommunication could lead to pain, frustration, and resentment. Every facet of the life could be improved in an effective and easy manner if the individuals are not having relational issues. Improvement in the relationships, landing better job, feel much understandable are some of the better and beneficial aspect for the individual having proper communication through proper learnings.

Taylor and Hamdy (2013) explained the problems that will be raised due to communication errors between the family members could be easily magnified and thus could lead to various other problems. For example, interaction, addiction related, and substance use could easily affect this communication. A proper and better communication includes talking to the point, expressing the feelings with statements with proper “I” designated in manner to make sure that he sentences are easy to understand by the individual listening to the topic. Speaking for individual himself despite of talking for others can be another measure for a better communication and leading a better life. Tong (2014) explained that not focusing on the traits rather emphasizing on the behaviours is another important factor for enhancing the communication skill in manner to eliminate the conflict and make the facing individual understandable about the facts that the individual is trying to make them understand. These are the facts that could be helpful for the individual to express their feelings and understand the facts that other individual trying to convince or the individual could easily convince the facing individuals.

However, Bramhall (2014) said that for certain subjects who are not willing to respond to the therapy process, application of the diagnostic tool is much more difficult. It requires months of conviction and assertion to finally open up the subject who will then share the problems and challenges faced by them mentally and emotionally. For these subjects, regular communication modes do not work even though their peers and the therapists try to convince them to share views and problems. For this particular problem, Heinrich et al. (2016) suggested the use of assertive type interviews that uses application of certain amount of pressure through the use and choice of questions. With the application of assertion, the subject may start to feel vulnerable and finally cooperate with the therapist. Bahadori, Shiri & Mahdizade (2015) suggested the application of interactive softwares for the purpose of convincing the subject in opening up to the therapist. In this process, there is no verbal interaction between the therapist and the subject. Using the interactive software, the therapist enters some questions with some choices of answers (generally three to four) and the subject is required to enter the interactive session at a certain time. During this session, the software displays the list of questions and their answerable options to the subjects. Berland and Berland (2017) argued that this process will be much easier since most people are vulnerable to interaction in virtual media than face to face communication.

Bradbury?Jones et al. (2014) explored about more applications of communication therapy and have published work regarding the therapy of the non-verbal people, especially the children. Often these non-verbal children lack confidence and feel inferior in front of other children in home as well as schools. The authors said that communication therapy can be effectively used in order to build confidence in these non-verbal children and convince them they are just as good as the other children. For the therapy purpose of the non-verbal children, sign languages can be used. However, if they are able to read and write normal language, then regular communication tools can be used although they should be interactive in nature instead of just regular interview process. The therapist has to ensure that the children in question properly respond to the interactive session so that the effect of the use of communication tool can become evident.

According to Thomson et al. (2015), effective communication process requires application of proper technique that suits the need for both the communicator and the reader. The communication process has certain attributes that need to be fulfilled so that the exchange of ideas between the two participants in successful. The attributes include language, assertion, nature of idea communicated and others. As per the authors, unless these attributes are satisfied there can be no effective communication. As per Sonntag et al. (2016), language is the most important attribute for effective communication. The communication process must be done in the same language understandable by both the communicators involved or through an intermediate medium through which the communication idea is being translated in a language understandable by the recipient.

According to the works of Delerue & Sicotte (2017), effective communication can produce a large number of benefits in addition to just exchange of ideas. The primary requirement for communication is to send an idea from one person to another but the mode of communication and the choice of words can do a great deal of benefit or damage to a particular individual. Hence, proper communication process can be used as a mode of therapy for those subjects who require special attention and care. Communication can also be effectively used to aid the learning processes of the children so that they understand the ideas well and grow and develop naturally. As per Drake & Ring (2016), communication is now widely used as a diagnostic tool for various counseling procedures where subjects participate in order to gain advice regarding solution to their mental problems.

A healthy balance between the aggressive communication and passive communication could be referred through the assertiveness as the individual needs to understand his or her needs and must advocate them to meet the needs. Compromise can be defined when the individual listens to other, acknowledge their statements and respect the feelings and statements of other individual expressing his or her feelings (Tran, 2016). A single statement or sentence can be expressed in three different forms including aggressive, passive, and assertive and this could be happened through using different tone. Basic thought, Body language, Language style, and consequences are some of the situations that an individual need to express in his or her life span. These thoughts and statements could be delivered in all the mentioned style if any of the situation is expressed in different style. Better practices and learnings about such techniques and objectives could be an effective measure for the individual to communicate and express his or her feelings in the real world.

Saxena (2015) provided some of the effective techniques of the communication that could be helpful for the individuals to communicate and express their feelings in the real world as such problems could lead to many stresses and other problems. Within a family, it is important to have an effective communication between the family members and it could act as “preventive maintenance, reassuring family members that they care about each other and appreciate each other's efforts.” Good everyday communication could be helpful in making it easier to bring up requests whenever needed, bring up the issues those could lead to conflict, and resolve those issues related to the conflicts. Co-occurring disorders could affect the communication between the family members in many ways such as it could take extra and additional efforts for the individuals to aware every individual to play their role in the respective sector. There are many situations in which an individual within the family might feel resist to talk while feeling depressed or might feel angry or irritable while having a discussion on any topic.

Dolan (2017) in their works stated that communication therapy is easier to apply when the subject cooperates with the therapist and willingly seeks the help of communication therapy. For this purpose, there are several communication techniques available including Johari window, assertive interviews and others that aim to help the subjects in rediscovering their own characters and gain confidence to overcome mental problems. Some of the diagnostic tools have also been effectively applied on subjects who are under drug abuse or emotional problems. On the other hand, diagnostic tools like strength cards are effectively used by various kindergarten and lower schools for the personal development of the children.

Ghaferi & Dimick (2015) said that choice and selection of the communication tool is necessary in order to aid the therapy of the subject. The authors have raised concern that in many cases, the communication tools do more damage than good to the subject under extreme stress or mental pressure. In those cases, instead of applying communication tools, suitable medication therapy should be applied under the invigilance of an experienced psychologist.

The action plan has been prepared on the basis of a six month learning period during which an extensive research will be conducted based on the research topic. During this phase, a large scale literature review will be conducted that will help to provide a significant amount of information regarding the chosen research topic. Furthermore, secondary data will be collected that will help to gather some statistical data regarding the research topic.

The main emphasis of the action plan will be on the non-verbal communication and presentation attributes in which, less marks have been received during the tutorial period. The target is to improve both the non-verbal communication and presentation skills in order to achieve higher rating of communication during the evaluation phase. In order to develop non-verbal communication skills, it is needed to improve writing skills so that message can easily be conveyed to the recipient without any issue. For the improvement of the presentation skill, sufficient practice of presentation in front of mock audience will be required.

Conclusion

The issues discussed regarding communication barrier in this report is evident from the fact that the problems of mental setback of certain patients are growing day by day even by the application of communication based therapy. Some children also luck sufficient mental growth and development even though diagnostic tools like strength cards have been used as they seem to be less interested in responding to these diagnostic tools. Hence, it can be said that before using the communication tools, sufficient awareness of the patients must be grown regarding the benefits of the diagnostic tools. A slow approach is recommended as the subject will not respond if the tool is applied with too much pressure and on a quick basis.

References

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