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Transcript of Soler Theory
The Soler theory was developed by Gerard Egan, a psychologist.
He believed non verbal communication can greatly improve the effectiveness of communication between individuals. His theory shows how non verbal communication can make an individual feel comfortable, secure and understood.
This theory is in particular used in counseling however it can be used at any time such as when listening to a friends concern.
• S- Sit Squarely
• O- Open
Sit squarely is the first step to the soler theory. It is important to posture yourself correctly to your patients. This is to portray that you are listening attentively . If you are directly facing your patient, this will allow you to interact with your patient better thus they will feel secure and comfortable enough to share their concerns.
However it is okay to turn your shoulders slightly away if you feel as if you are imitating or causing discomfort to your patients but you should always face your patients to portay to them that they have your full attention.
Leaning is the third stage of the soler theory. This means that as a health practitioner with the action of leaning forward towards the service user , it will indicate to your patients that they have your full attention and they can comfortably share all their concerns with you.
However in certain cultures such as the muslim, it is important to keep a distance if you are the opposite sex such as a male practitioner shouldn't lean too close to a female patient. Additionally elders from the eastern culture may consider this non- verbal body language disrespectful thus you need to ensure you are not invading anyones personal space.
Eye contact is a vital part of non communication. Eye contact indicates to your patients that you are focusing on their concerns . Furthermore with eye contact you can notice certain issues with your patients such as if they are slumping or they are not giving you enough eye contact thus you can find out if they are not understanding the messages you are conveying thus a translator may be needed. Moreover not giving eye contact to your patients will indicate you are not interested nor listening to their concerns.
However in certain cultures such as the eastern, continuous eye contact especially with an elder is a sign of disrespect thus as a health practitioner you should notice when your patients are not comfortable with your eye contact.
Furthermore in the muslim culture, eye contact between the opposite sex will indicate that you are interested thus it is not acceptable therefore you should take this into account and limit the eye contact you give to certain cultures.
Open posture is a popular form of non- verbal communication. This is very effective in any healthcare setting. Open posture means not sitting or standing with your arms or legs crossed. This posture portrays to your patients that you are listening, interested and concerned about their well being. However having a closed posture will indicate that you are uninterested , angry or even frustrated thus bringing discomfort and distress to your patients.
Relaxing is the final stage of the soler theory. It is important for you as a health practitioner to be relaxed before you meet a patient. If you were to be in a rush or fidgety when a patient is expressing their concerns this may indicate to them that their concerns are irrelevant and this may also cause them to become anxious due to your tense body language. Therefore it is necessary to have a relaxed body language as this portrays to the service users that you are not in a rush and have time to listen to all their concerns attentively. This will then enable the service users to freely speak about all their concerns knowing that you as a health practitioner is listening and giving them the most effective care you can offer.
One disadvantage of the soler theory is that as a health practitioner it may be difficult to remember what is acceptable and unacceptable in certain cultures. You may do a gesture that you think its acceptable however due to this gesture your patient may feel disrespected thus not comfortable enough to express their concerns with you.
One strength of this soler theory is that it helps you communicate effectively with various different kinds of patients in various forms of non-communication such as eye contact and gestures. With this theory you could provide the best, secure and comfortable setting for your patients thus they will be able to share their concerns with ease with you as their health care practitioner.