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ISSN: 2277-5536 (Print); 2277-5641 (Online)

THE EFFECTIVENESS OF INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION


SKILLS, PROBLEM SOLVING AND SELF-AWARENESS ON
REDUCTION OF AGGRESSION AND INCREASING SELF-ESTEEM IN
CHILDREN
1

Soheila Mohammad Pournami1, Biouk Tajeri2*


Department of Clinical Psychology, Qazvin Branch, Islamic Azad University, Qazvin, Iran
2
Department of Health Psychology, Karaj Branch, Islmaic Azad University, Karaj, Iran
*
Corresponding author: b.tajiri@yahoo.com

ABSTRACT
Purpose: the aim of present study was determining the amount of effectiveness of interpersonal
communication skills, problem solving and self-awareness on reduction of aggression and increasing selfesteem in children. The sample of present study consists of 30 people in two control and excremental groups
based on sampling. The sampling was selected based on available sampling among labor children under
support of Khaneye Mehr in Tehran and have been replaced randomly into two groups of control and
experimental ones. The results show that interpersonal communication skills training, problem-solving and
awareness will reduce the aggression in children (f=34.005; sig=0.001). Moreover, interpersonal
communication skill, problem-solving and self-awareness will increase self-esteem in children (f=44.129;
sig=0.001). Follow-up results show that problem-solving training, interpersonal relation and self-awareness
on increasing of self-esteem (sig=0.054; t=2.009) and decreasing the aggression (sig=0.157; t=1.451) will
be continued and sustained until the follow-up period.

KEYWORDS:

interpersonal relation, problem solving, awareness, aggression, self-esteem, labor

children.

INTRODUCTION
Welfare organization has defined the street children like this: street children refers to all street children
under 18 years old (both girls and boys) who are forced to work in streets of big cities for their life survival
(Asgarpoor, 1392). Violation of human rights in the workplace is very clear and sharp with involving
physical injuries, serious psychological damage to these children (Bandili, 2008). Labor children are
categorized in class of children in difficult situations or urban vulnerable children that are affected by
the pressures and tensions of contemporary society living in big cities, natural process of normal growth
and normal socialization process are at risk. (Snartena and Vijurdana, 2012).
Participation in economic activity in early childhood, particularly in hazardous occupations and self-seeking
detrimental have effect on physical and mental growth of children which lead to irreparable damage that
creates to permanent disability ( Kalpana, 2011). Children who work in these jobs are deprived from their
childhood and due to exposing to long hours and physical stress, social and psychological, inadequate
wages, high load of responsibilities, and lack of access to education status of these children will undermine
their self-esteem. In addition, most labor children are exposed to emotional and physical abuse. Regarding
the immaturity of physiological and psychological, and biological processes, children than adults are more
susceptible to abuse and health problems ( Plomer, Mustafa, Koudreti, Hag and Yousiif, 2007).
It seems that the method which can help mental and physical health of labor children is life skill training
such as interpersonal relation, problem solving and self-awareness. Life skills are main an essential method
for having healthy and efficient lives. In another words, these skills are collection of abilities which causes
our adaption with environment and formation of positive and useful behaviors (Korn et al, 2013). These
abilities enable us to play appropriate role in society and without harming ourselves or others, we can face
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DAV International Journal of Science Volume-4, Issue-2, June 2015

ISSN: 2277-5536 (Print); 2277-5641 (Online)

efficiently with demands, expectations, and daily issues especially in our relations with others. Life skill
training program is a prevention and improvement program. This program is designed to promote mental
health and prevention of psycho-social damage (Korn et al., 2013).one of the behaviors that labor children
experience is aggression. Aggression has been announced as one of the global problems among all
teenagers. And what causes the attention of all researchers to aggressive behavior is its undesirable effects
on interpersonal behavior and as well as undesirable effect on internal states of people. Aggressive children
and teenagers often do not have the power to control their behavior and social norms are questioned. They
consider aggression as a way of defending their rights in a hostile way that their purpose is taking advantage
of others. Aggressive people satisfy their needs and demands through dominance, insults and humiliation
of others (Cannoli et al, 2010; cited by Yaghubi, Sohrabi, Mofidi, 1390). Aggressive behavior can be seen
among people with fast, petulant and domineering and more competitive.
As a result, by coping skills training, reducing stress, creating a sense of altruism and cooperation, the level
of aggression will be reduced. Aggression and aggressive behavior has undesirable effect on internal state
of people and as the following will affect interpersonal relationship. On the other hand, ability to
communicate effectively with others causes optimal growth and development in personality. ( yghoubi,
sohrabi, mofidi, 1390). Self-esteem as a persons character affects on the development of the individual and
her mood. During last century, self-esteem has been considered as main component of personality that has
been paid by psychologist. Cooper-smith (1967, quoted by abouhamzeh, 1392) has defined self-esteem as
the collection of feedbacks and beliefs that individual expresses in his relation with outer world. Certainly,
one of the important reason that researchers paid attention to the concept of self-esteem is its potential effect
on health.
Studies have shown that the range of personal consequences includes factors such as anxiety and depression
( kapplan, 1996, quoted by abouhamzeh, 1392) mental and physical disorder (ouh\gland, 1998, quoted by
abouhamzeh, 1392) problems in communication and behaviors and inappropriate and deviant response,
such drug use, aggression, vandalism and distort reality (kopplan, 1996, quoted by abouhamzeh, 1392).
Cooper-smith has considered self-esteem as a threshold variable that its low amount influences
perseverance, educational performance, and disrupt individual performance in the realm of psychology,
family, social and physical. And force him to change his condition or being adapted, adaption that can be
effective or ineffective (Parsamanesh, 1389). In addition, extensive studies have shown that self-esteem is
related with signs of social anxiety especially social anxiety. . According to Pritchard (2010) and Thomas,
Porswiss and Nelemanss (2011) high self-esteem is associated with lower levels of anxiety. In a research
of Iizgig, Aliyaz, Dougan and Kogo (Izgig, Aliyaz, Dougan and kogou, 2004, quoted by thomas porswiss
and nelemanss, 2011) the highest prevalence of social anxiety was among students with the lowest
incidence of social anxiety, low self-esteem and high self-esteem among the student. Self-esteem is
confirmation and value degree that the person feels about his or her judgment of the value (smith, nolenhoksma, friedksson and louftous, 2002).
Life training collection is a focused attitude on an individual that its purpose is helping people for
developing skills needed to live. Life training collection is not only concerned with enabling people in
present life but also their abilities in future one. And help people to move from strengths and weaknesses
of the skills and the move towards empowerment skills. In fact, the final purpose of this is that people
accept to take excellence responsibilities and individual merits. These individual merits includes feel a high
level of competency, mental health, self-actualization and acceptance of individual responsibility. Thus,
life training collection has the prevention purpose, control and management problems and like an
educational approach is appropriate for group and individual interference. (Soulsou, 2003). Life skills are
those abilities that enable individual that in a relation with other humans, society, culture and his
environment act positively and effectively and support the mental health (Spinvall, 2010). The most
important life skill includes management skills, emotions, self-awareness, problem solving, determination,
anger control, critical thinking, decision making, effective communication, access management in
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DAV International Journal of Science Volume-4, Issue-2, June 2015

ISSN: 2277-5536 (Print); 2277-5641 (Online)

interpersonal relation. Totally, life training skills by involving children, teenagers and other people in
different age, gender ranges in participatory and interactive teaching methods of how they think instead of
what they think, is a strong tool for learning three areas of cognitive learning skills, social skills and
interpersonal skills and emotional adjustment puts at their disposal. So in this research, among life training
skill, interpersonal relation, problem-solving and self-awareness have been selected and training of these
three skills on aggression control and increasing self-esteem in children have been examined. Based on this,
research question is that if life straining skill is effective on aggression control. Is life training skill effective
on increasing self-esteem?

METHODS
Present study is quasi-experimental design of pretest - posttest control group and a one-month follow-up.
Studied population includes labor children under the support center of labor child center. The sample of
study based on sampling in accordance with purposive sampling includes 30 people (for each group 15
people; it means 15 people in control group and 15 in experimental group). Sampling based on available
sampling in labor children who are under support of child labor supportive center were randomly selected
and placed into two control and experimental groups. That in control group life training skill ( labor children
of control group during 12 sessions of 90 minutes once in a week under control of life training skill
(interpersonal relation, problem solving, self-awareness) based on life training skill package.

FINDINGS
Table 1. Mean, standard deviation of self-esteem and aggression in control and experimental groups in 2
stages of pretest and posttest.
Group
Control
Experimental
Posttest
Pretest
Posttest
Pretest
Variable
Standar
Standar
Standar
Standar
d
d
d
d
Mean
Mean
Mean
Mean
deviatio
deviatio
deviatio
deviatio
n
n
n
n
50.1
24.22
000.2
00.25
15.3
00.12 523.0
35.21
Self-esteem
23.0
24.54
41.3
45.200
23.6
45.02 04.3
14.205
General aggression
First hypothesis: interpersonal communication skills, problem solving, self-awareness, reduce aggression
in children.
Table2. Multivariate analysis of variance test results on grades after self-esteem test
Eta
coefficien
t
320.0

Sig

Ms

Df

Ss

002.0

003.52

355.2036

355.2036

Source

Depended
variable

Between
Aggressio
groups
n
352.32
10
664.2310
Within
group
50
000.122150
Total
Based on table number2, it has been cleared that since in variable of between groups the significance level
was 0.001 and this amount is smaller than significance level of criteria, 0.01, and obtained f value (34.005)
is larger than values of table so the first research hypothesis regarding the effect of interpersonal
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DAV International Journal of Science Volume-4, Issue-2, June 2015

ISSN: 2277-5536 (Print); 2277-5641 (Online)

communication skills, problem solving, self-awareness on reduction of aggression in labor children has
been confirmed. Based on eta coefficient (the effectiveness and statistical power) 0.548 percent. And
individual differences in variance in the scores were due to interpersonal communication skills, problem
solving and self-awareness. In another word, effective interpersonal communication skills, problem solving
and consciousness was 54.8 percents.
Table3. Paired t-test results to compare changes in aggression score in the experimental group at post-test
and follow up
Sig

234.0

Df

15

232.-2

Coupled differences

Stage

Esd

Sd

355.-0

025.10

60.05
25.50

Posttest
Follow-up

Statistical
index
Source of
changes
Aggressio
n

Results table 3 with the purpose of comparing changes in aggression scores in the experimental group at
post-test and follow up to assess the continuing effectiveness of the training program solving, interpersonal
relationships and self-awareness on reduction of aggression, t-test was used. The results of analysis show
that between two stages of test and follow up, significant differences cannot be found.( p>0.157 and
t=1.451). Thus the results of training program of problem solving, interpersonal relationship and selfawareness on reduction on aggression until follow-up stage was stable and continuous.
Second hypothesis: interpersonal communication skills, problem solving, self-awareness, increases selfesteem in children.
Table4. Multivariate analysis of variance test results on grades and self-esteem
Eta
coefficient
621.0

Sig

Ms

Df

Ss

Source

002.0

215.22

055.000

055.000

220.20

10

255.300

50

000.21045

Between
groups
Within
group
Total

Depended
variable
Selfesteem

Based on table 4-it has been specified that due to the fact that in variable between groups the significance
level equals (0.001) and this amount is smaller than significance level of criteria, 0.01, and since the amount
of obtained f(44.129) is larger than the amount of table. Thus, the first research hypothesis based on
interpersonal relation skill, problem solving and self-awareness will increase self-esteem in labor children
has been confirmed. And based on eta coefficient (the effectiveness and statistical power) equals 0.612 and
interpersonal differences and individual differences in variance score in group is the result of interpersonal
communication skill, problem solving and self-awareness and in other words the amount of effect of
interpersonal communication skill, problem solving and self-awareness equals 61.2 percent.

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DAV International Journal of Science Volume-4, Issue-2, June 2015

ISSN: 2277-5536 (Print); 2277-5641 (Online)

Table 5. Paired t-test results to compare changes in self-esteem scores in the experimental group at posttest and follow up
Sig

032.0

df

15

005.1

Coupled differences

Stage

Esd

Sd

201.0

555.0

65.25
14.25

Posttest
Follow-up

Statistical
indicators
Source of
changes
Selfesteem

The results of table 5-results of table 5 that in order to compare changes in self-esteem scores in the
experimental group at post-test and follow up to assess the continuing effectiveness of the training program
solving, interpersonal relationships, self-esteem and self-dependent t-test was used to increase . The results
of analysis show that between two stages meaning posttest and follow-up, significant differences cannot be
found (p=0.054 and t=2.009). Thus, the results of training program problem solving, interpersonal relation
and self-awareness on increase of self-esteem until follow-up stage was stable and continues.
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION
The purpose of conducting this research is determining the level of effectiveness of training program of
interpersonal, problem solving and self-awareness on reduction of aggression and increase of self-esteem
of labor children. The experimental study with pretest - posttest control group with follow-up was 60
months. From the perspective of purpose, this research is application. Studied population includes labor
children under control of supportive center of labor children in Tehran. The research sample based on
sampling based on purpose including 30 people (for each group 15 people; meaning 15 people in
experimental and 15 people in control group). Sampling based on available sampling among labor children
under control of supportive Tehran labor children center have been selected and replaced into two control
and experimental groups. Measurement tools used in this research consists of trait anger expression
inventory and state questionnaire and self-esteem of Cooper-Smith smith questionnaire. Children of
experimental group during 12 sessions of 90 minutes, once a week under support of life skills (interpersonal
relations, problem solving and self-awareness) were placed and experimental group in this study don not
have any interferences into life skills.
Results show that training of interpersonal communication skill, problem solving and self-awareness will
reduce aggression in labor children. Moreover, training of interpersonal communication skills will increase
self-esteem of labor children. The results of follow-up indicate that training program of problem solving,
interpersonal relations and self-awareness will be stable and continuous until the follow-up stage to increase
self-esteem and decrease aggression. It can be concluded that training interpersonal communication skills,
problem solving and self-awareness increases self-esteem of children and on the other hand decreases their
aggression.
Generally, the findings of present study indicate from perspective of training, these skills meaning
interpersonal relations, problem solving and self-awareness on reduction of aggression and increase of selfesteem can promote mental health, peoples adaption. Interpersonal relation skills, problem solving and
self-awareness will cause modernization of psychosocial capabilities. These abilities help individual to deal
effectively address conflict and situations of their lives in order to perform positively and effectively in
their relations with other humans, society, culture and environment and as it has been cleared self-esteem
is one of the mental health component for individuals. Therefore, it is logical that learning, practicing and
teaching interpersonal communication skills, problem solving and self-awareness causes changes in
attitudes, values and behavior strengthening. And as a result, creating a positive and healthy behaviors of
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ISSN: 2277-5536 (Print); 2277-5641 (Online)

many mental health problems can be prevented, and this in turn will enhance the self-esteem of individuals
and their aggression is reduced. Limitations of this study was to conduct research on child labor and street
children so generalized results of this study should be treated with caution. Therefore, it is suggested that
similar research be done in other cities, and the results will be compared to the present investigation.
Alternatively, welfare and social service officials and those involved in the organization of the well-being
make an effort more than ever on group education service such as life, social skills and trainings of coping
strategies for labor children. Study various sources has shown a very high motivation group training.
Members get feedback by participating in these training, stimulate interaction, practice responsibility and
commitment, learn social relation and reduce their aggression and increase their self-esteem.
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