Social interaction is a very important part of our lives and is noticeably influential. However, it does not always happen flawlessly, thus leading to severe disputes. The following essay will discuss the rational-emotive approach and how it can prevent conflicts that involve counterfeit emotional language and the chilling effect. I will use an event from my life as an example for the text and depict what went wrong. Moreover, it will explain what should have actually been done.
When I was a teenager, I had a very serious conflict with my friend that resulted in the end of our relationship. Before the peak of said disagreement, the girl used to tell me that she was content with everything I said, no matter how brutal I may have sounded. She always agreed with my views, even when I was wrong. This is known as counterfeit emotional language, and now I realize I should have considered her true opinions and emotions (Schweitzer & Wood, 2016). This would have given more room for honesty and provided my friend with a sense of safety.
Another cause of the conflict was her feeling inferior to me. Thus, my friend lacked the courage to express her actual views on our interactions, due to a case known as the chilling effect (Schweitzer & Wood, 2016). The girl saw me as someone better than her, so she feared offending me at any cost. I should have been less aggressive and more flexible during conversations, for not only does this behavior concern people, but additionally, it is a sign of poor emotional intelligence (Schweitzer & Wood, 2016). This dispute could have easily been prevented by a rational-emotive approach to feelings. That way, I would have known that my words were harmful and she would not have felt insecure around me.
In conclusion, the rational-emotive approach to feelings is helpful for preventing conflicts involving issues like counterfeit emotional language, the chilling effect and poor emotional intelligence. My conflict was caused by me being very aggressive and inflexible. Moreover, my friend felt inferior to me, which is why she could not be honest with me. All of that could have easily been prevented if my emotional intelligence at that time was not poor. It would have helped me express my opinions without seeming aggressive and made me a better person.
Wood, J. & Schweitzer, A. (2016) Everyday encounters: An introduction to interpersonal communication. Nelson Education Limited.