Can’t wait to say something?
Have you ever been in conversation and had a perfect story to add or information to share but no place to interject?
It happens to the best of us. When it does, you do the best you can to hold the thought fresh in your mind while you wait for an opportunity to jump into the conversation.
Holding that thought can ruin your listening skills.
Conversations sometimes move fast and topics might shift. So while you hold the thought – and continuously fine tune your eventual delivery – you must also follow the topic to ensure that your input is relevant.
Holding a thought in mind and keeping it fresh for delivery takes away from your ability to truly listen and understand the conversation. As you are holding the thought, you are tracking the topic, looking for an opening, fine tuning your delivery, AND trying to listen.
One of the keys to both trust and likability is being a good listener. People are inherently interested in their own interests. They like to talk about their interests and experiences. The more attentively you listen to them, the more they will like you (and the more you will know about them).
How can you hear what they are saying if you are listening to yourself? How can you contribute thoughtfully when you are focused on what you will say next?
Have your thought and listen, too!
Here are a few ways to get the most out of conversation. You can contribute and listen.
Important thoughts that occur to you during conversation will come back into your mind at the right time. Trust this and let it go.
Over time, this will help you to build trust in your ability to recall information when you need it. Most of the time, you contribute to conversation easily and don’t have to “hold a thought.” Before you enter a conversation, focus on times you performed well in conversation and felt good about it later.
Practice repeating key points back to other speakers during a conversation – verbatim. It will make the speaker feel truly heard and understood. It will also help you to maintain your focus and awareness on the speaker.
It will help you to remember the conversation more accurately. A recent study shows that repeating information to another person out loud will help you to recall it later.
This is certainly something to keep in mind when you are meeting new people. Try repeating each person’s name out loud as you are introduced. It will help you to recall the name later.
Holding a thought usually entails self-talk (adjusting the delivery of the thought). Self-talk takes up an enormous amount of working memory. Loss of working memory in the middle of a conversation can lead to anxiety, panic, and shut down.
You can take the pressure off of social situations with tapping. Tapping before a meeting or social event will help you to truly connect with people and allow you to enjoy listening.
Start by thinking of the last time really wanted to jump into a conversation. You can also think of being with people who inspire lively conversation. Imagine it in your mind as vividly as possible.
Tap this protocol out loud.
On your Karate Chop (KC) Point:
Even though I want to tell my story, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.
Even though I can’t wait to contribute, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.
Even though I need to get this out, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.
Top of your head (TH): I have such a great bit of information!
Eye Brow (EB): I can’t wait to tell them about it.
Outside of the Eye (OE): It’s right there on the tip of my mind.
Under Eye (UE): I know exactly how I’ll say it.
Under Nose (UN): But I keep rethinking it anyway.
Chin (CH): Soon there will be a pause, and I can jump into this discussion.
Collarbone (CB): I’m holding my thought while I try to gauge the pace of the conversation
KC: I need to hurry up and say it before the topic changes.
TH: I wish they would let me say something!
EB: I don’t want to interrupt.
OE: But I don’t want to miss this chance to contribute, either.
UE: I want to be heard.
UN: I want to be a relevant part of this conversation.
CH: It’s hard to do all of this at once!
CB: Holding my thought…
KC: Judging the pace of conversation…
TH: Looking for an opening…
EB: And listening to them?
OE: Well, I’m not doing a very good job at that!
UE: I barely hear what they are saying!
UN: They get no real attention from me.
CH: I can’t follow the conversation.
CB: I couldn’t tell you what they just said.
KC: I think that they can tell.
TH: I want to pay more attention.
EB: I want them to feel heard and understood.
OE: I want them to feel important.
UE: I know how to be a good listener.
UN: Maybe my story can wait.
CH: There will be a time for me to have my say and to contribute.
CB: Right now, listening is the most beneficial thing I can do.
KC: When I do that, they will feel like they have been heard.
TH: They will know that they are important.
EB: They will feel understood.
OE: And when it is my turn to contribute, I will have much more of their attention.
UE: They will truly be able to listen to me without distraction.
UN: There WILL be an opening. I choose to make one if necessary.
CH: I choose to trust my instincts to know when to jump into the discussion.
CB: I will get a chance to contribute.
KC: Listening now will only strengthen my contribution.
Take a deep breath.
There will always be an opportunity for you to jump in and contribute to conversation. Trust your memory and your timing so that you can fully engage in conversation with the speaker. Enjoy listening! The more you do it, the more popular you will become
If you have deeper concerns or difficulties speaking up and contributing to conversation, contact me. We will work together to eliminate any blocks you might have so that you can enjoy being a part of the conversation.
PS – Be sure to check out the video for this blog!