Strategies in Developing Friendships

  • Dorothy Miell
  • Steve Duck
Part of the Springer Series in Social Psychology book series (SSSOC)

Abstract

People spend a relatively large percentage of their lives trying to get other people to like them, and the inability to engender positive feelings in others is often reported as a frustrating and unhappy experience (Bell & Daly, 1984). In initiating and developing relationships, unacquainted persons start with intentions, hopes, needs, desires, wishes, and beliefs that guide their actions. They also develop, so we believe, strategies for serving these intentions. In addition, they have a range of tactical subroutines and general styles for executing such important activities as “being polite,” “being friendly,” and “encouraging engagement.” Central among such strategies is the use of self-disclosure, which we believe can be used as a tactical device to influence relationships and is not, as previously thought, some mere reaction to the demands of a norm of reciprocity or to exchange requirements. Thus, by varying the way in which a topic is discussed (that is, by manipulating their communicative style), partners can influence not only the direction a particular conversation takes but also the development of the friendship that serves as a context to that conversation.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dorothy Miell
  • Steve Duck

There are no affiliations available

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