I was having a conversation with a group of people today and I started to find myself getting a little annoyed. We were sharing stories and relating information about what was happening for each of us and I noticed one person starting to manipulate the conversation. Someone would share something and that person had a story that would “top” the one before. I found myself focusing on that person and noticing the number of times she was saying the word “I”. One of my pet peeves in public speaking is a speaker who says “um” a lot. As I listen to them, I find myself almost obsessing to the point that the only thing I hear is the “um” and I begin to count the number of times they say it. Today, I found myself in the same situation only this person had an “I” problem.
I am all for empowering people to stand up for themselves and remembering to put themselves at the top of the list. If it isn’t good for you, it won’t be good for anyone you come in contact with. As I listened to this woman, there was nothing in her statements that even showed any connection to others or any sense of empowerment. It was all about the “I” without regard to the situations of others in the conversation. It was a cry out for help and the need to be heard. It might appear as being strong willed or independent, but it really was fear.
It is important to remember the oneness of us all. We are all just a drop of water that creates this big, wide ocean called the Universe. It is impossible to separate the exact molecules that make up that unique drop once it has blended within the ocean. As we come together in conversation or situations, we need to remind ourselves of that concept. “I” cannot exist alone. It’s a nice thought to take a week and shut out the world. However, in the end, we really do need the interconnectedness with others to keep moving forward.
The next time you are in a conversation, really listen to the number of times you say the word “I”. Are you expressing an interest in the other person? Are you present and accounted for? Are you trying to make a connection or trying to be heard?
Just look back at my first paragraph and count the number of times I used “I”. That was about me making a point to be heard. Hopefully, the point was made in the paragraphs that followed. After all, it is my blog and “I” can express anything “I” want!!
Have a blessed weekend!
P.S. If you ever hear me speak and I get caught in the “um” track, please raise your hand to interrupt me and let me know. You will be heard!