Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Things That Come Out of Our Mouths

Being around elementary students every day tends to open your eyes to certain facts including:
  • Only the young should have children
  • Their enthusiasm is contagious
  • Their energy is not
  • They really do say the darnest things
  • They are all way smarter than we think they are
  • They will take everything that comes out of your mouth LITERALLY
In my efforts to simplify my life (which is way more difficult than I though especially when other people live with me) I read, at Soul Hiker, that being clear in my speech reflects mental clarity. Uh oh. I'm in big trouble on this one. My mind is mush so you can imagine what comes out of my mouth. No where am I more aware of this than when in the classroom with elementary kiddos.

I used to think it was the kiddos but, I now realize that is not always the case. Sometimes (often), it's more of my speech not being clear. And it does lead to confusion and misunderstanding. Two things are never necessary. Being around the kiddos has brought me to a better awareness of the words I use as well as my tone of voice. Without an awareness of our speech, we may as well be communicating digitally (which is a little better now with all the Emojis for clarification  😜...Riiight.)

The problem with communicating digitally, however, is the lack of human contact- something we seem to be forgetting that we need. If a baby is lacking in human contact, they suffer failure to thrive. I believe this is something that happens to anyone of any age when human contact becomes scarce. (Off topic, much?)

Getting back on track- suppose I said to you, "For Pete's sake, STOP telling me it's only three months until Christmas." You might think that I don't like Christmas or that I think reindeer are stupid and I don't believe in Santa. You would be wrong. On all counts. All I meant by that was, I already know when Christmas is because it's the same date every year and because I LOVE Christmas and count down the days/months/whatever from one Christmas to the next. I don't need to hear this every day. So, to recap, it's not that I don't like Christmas, it's that I prefer not to be annoyed by people telling me things of which I am already aware. But I was not clear about the meaning behind my words, was I?

I'm also not clear in my speech when I tell the two lovelies who live here with me to clean up their rooms. Because they never do. Only problem is that, in that case, I have no idea how to be clearer.

What about people who talk and talk and talk and talk so much that you start to think they don't really have a point they just like to hear the sound of their own voice? Do you know anyone like that? I do. I know four people like that. Nope. Make that five, Droning on and on isn't being clear in our speech.

When we aren't clear in our speech, we seem to be hinting at something or giving mixed messages, and we never get to the point. I tune out very early when these people start talking. Of course, we don't need to be so direct that we offend others. But getting to the point should not take long. Short, sweet, and concise is the rule that I am trying to follow. Apparently, I'm not doing a very good job with that rule in this post but, you get the point. I hope.

So I am working on being clear in my communication. I should probably work on my listening skills too. I've just recently heard the phrase, "Listen to hear not to respond." That's excellent advice.

And another area to add to that ever growing self-improvement list.

Is anyone else out there working on a self-improvement list? I'd love to hear about it!

8 comments:

  1. I think that 'Listen to hear, not to respond' should be on everyone's self-improvement list.

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    1. I agree. It's like we're all in such a hurry that we think we're being polite by listening to respond. Which is not true at all.

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  2. I really, really like that motto! I'm guilty of not always listening - really hearing. So now I have one thing on my new self-improvement list!

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    1. I wish I only had one thing on mine. LOL Let me know if you discover some helpful tips along the way!

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  3. When I was acting branch manager in a bank in CT, we had a woman that was our head teller and she talked and talked and talked and talked until your eyes crossed. Customers complained that she just went on and on. A lot. I had to speak to her about it. I had to put it on her annual review that she needed to listen more. She drove me nuts. I was so glad when she transferred out to another office!

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  4. I know of some who do not seem to know how to listen to children without interrupting and getting frustrated with them

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  5. Listening and Communicating are an art form. Very few ever come close to understanding this.

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  6. I agree with you on human contact. I say that to my husband all the time about babies who do not thrive without contact. Trying to point out that just because you are here doesn't mean I feel loved! I can relate with many of your points here and "Listen to hear not to respond" is great advice. I have been remaining quiet lately and I have felt more peace.

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Thank you so much for taking the time to comment! It makes me feel connected to everyone even though we may live far apart! Have a wonderful day!

 
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