problems such as weight change and headaches than those who did talk with friends.Kathryn Greene, Valerian J. Derlega, and Alicia Mathews, “Self- Disclosure in Personal Relationships,” in The Cambridge Handbook of Personal Relationships, eds. Anita L. Vangelisti and Daniel Perlman (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006), 421. Satisfying physical needs is essential for our physical functioning and survival. But, in order to socially function and thrive, we must also meet instrumental, relational, and identity needs.
Instrumental needs include needs that help us get things done in our day-to-day lives and achieve short- and long-term goals. We all have short- and long-term goals that we work on every day. Fulfilling these goals is an ongoing communicative task, which means we spend much of our time communicating for instrumental needs. Some common instrumental needs include influencing others, getting information we need, or getting support.Brant R. Burleson, Sandra Metts, and Michael W. Kirch, “Communication in Close Relationships,” in Close Relationships: A Sourcebook, eds. Clyde Hendrick and Susan S. Hendrick (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, 2000), 247. In short, communication that meets our instrumental needs helps us “get things done.”
To meet instrumental needs, we often use communication strategically. Politicians, parents, bosses, and friends use communication to influence others in order to accomplish goals and meet needs. There is a research area within communication that examines compliance-gaining communication, or communication aimed at getting people to do something or act in a particular way.Robert H. Gass and John S. Seiter,Persuasion, Social Influence and Compliance Gaining (Boston, MA: Allyn and Bacon, 1999), 205. Compliance gaining and communicating for instrumental needs is different from coercion, which forces or manipulates people into doing what you want. In Section 1.3