Kola, Susanna and Walsh, Jane C. (2005) Communication ability as a moderator of cardiovascular reactivity to a speech task. In: 19th Annual Conference of the European Health Psychology Society 2005, August 2005, NUI, Galway. (Unpublished)

Communication, especially the ability to communicate emotions has been associated with individuals’ ability to cope with stress. Talking with others is a normal and healthy way to cope with upheaval and there is evidence that withholding desires to talk about emotions may have a detrimental effect on health (e.g., Pennebaker, 1989). There is also evidence that people with good communication skills develop stronger and more effective social support networks (Sarason et al., 1985). Self-disclosure is an important factor in enduring friendships, and reciprocal self-disclosure extends and deepens the relationship. However, not everyone establishes mutually rewarding personal relationships, and to a degree, this reflects poor communication (Hargie & Tourish, 1997).

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