Over the past two posts we’ve discussed how to effectively deal with those who interrupt us, whether during normal conversation or in the midst of a disagreement. I’ve enjoyed the responses and the suggestions from everyone. Thank you.
Just as important is to make sure we are not the person doing the interrupting. This was a terrible habit of mine for many, many years. It was around the same time I decided to work on several other very important character traits, in which I was also lacking, that I attacked this one, as well.
I was determined to make my habit of “Interruptus Maximus Obnoxius” a thing of the past.
Interesting was that after yesterday’s post, I received a note on my Facebook page from a friend of mine who expressed concern that she interrupts when excited and asked for my thoughts on how to overcome this challenge.
The fact is, I still catch myself interrupting (although 99% less than I used to!). The key is that now…I catch myself doing it, and can immediately apologize when I do. This both honors the other person (and acknowledges the mistake) and reminds me not to do that for remainder of conversation.
As to how to overcome it? It takes focus, concentration, and practice. Lots of practice!
I made it my primary purpose in a conversation to not interrupt. I put sticky notes with this reminder on my telephone, around my house, in my car, on my computer, everywhere and anywhere I might see it.
I failed, succeeded and failed again. And, then, amazingly enough, the times I’d interrupt become more and more rare.
You can do the same. It’s well worth the effort. Practically nothing else will stymie one’s ability to lead, to influence, to persuade, to effectively communicate as will interrupting others. They will become frustrated, annoyed, angry and be less inclined to agree and/or buy into your ideas…not to mention, it makes it harder for them to like you). 🙂
Overcome this habit (I’m not saying you have it, but if you do) and your life will be so much less stressful, more productive and much happier. And people will constantly credit you with being a good listener. That’s one compliment I never used to receive and now I often do. All from breaking one very counter-productive habit.
Any thoughts you’d like to share if this is a habit you have broken or are trying to break? Please suggest additional ways to accomplish this that I missed.