Friday, April 29, 2011

New Topic - discuss amongst yourselves.

Contemplating what I will talk about when/if I get my voice back has taken up much of thought life recently. As it is, I've noticed several changes since my voice loss.
1. I obviously talk a lot less. At first that was simply because I had no voice.
2. Then I spoke little because it was too difficult to make myself heard. It just wasn't worth the effort.
3. Then my silence became one of choice. Before I say anything, I examine it's purpose, it's usefulness. What, if anything, will my words add to this conversation? What would be my purpose for offering my words?

4. I have also become hyper-aware of conversational dynamics. I hear people conversing and ask the same questions I would ask myself: Why are they speaking? What are they adding to the conversation.

5. Often I determine, I don't have anything worthwhile to add. Maybe I could rephrase or reiterate what someone else has already said, but that's not adding anything new. Maybe I could be confirming someone else's opinion, but there is almost always someone else to add to that conversation. My personal opinion would be redundant.

6. One possibility is that I just don't have as much to share. I enjoy hearing other people talk. There are so many people who need to be heard who obviously don't feel heard. Maybe that's part of my job.

7. Another possibility is that this is my chance to learn to be a better listener. While I was supposed to learn that in graduation school, and develop that skill in my job as a school counselor, I haven't yet learned that lesson. I can tell I'm becoming a better listener. Hopefully that translates into being a better counselor.
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