When you need to talk, there are those that will listen

Things that make you go: Hmmm....

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Shut your mouth... For better relationships
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I read an article on MSN a few months ago on personal interactions in a group.  I actually spent the next several weeks meditating on what the author discussed.  I realized that the very things that annoyed me about some people in conversation I  was guilty of doing.What am I rambling on about?  Well, that's just it.

Often when we are in a group of three or more there will be a topic of conversation that I do not have direct relevant experience or knowledge.  Oh, sure, I may have seen something related or maybe even have direct experience.  But in the desire to be included and be thought of as a knowledgable person, I feel like I have to interject some commentary into the conversation.

I began to realize in only the last year that this was not only annoying to others, but insulting too.

I do not know everything.  I know alot about alot of things, maybe more than most, maybe not.  Either, expressing what I knwo or think I know may not be the best or most expedient thig to do.

If I had realized this in my youth, I might have had more and better friends.  I might have gone to more parties and actually done more than sit by myself.  

My desire to belong to some social collective was great.  But I did not want to just be part of the collective, but a leader in the collective.  Probably a result of other things that happened to me that left me in an emotional crater.  I needed to be important, or at least feel like I was.  I needed to be needed but felt rejected.

These are feelings that have followed me pretty much most of my adult life. 

There are probably others that feel the same way.  And many more that will read this and say, "dang, it's about time he got it, clueless dolt..."

In my desire to belong, I made not one, but many social faux pas.Instead of drawing the community to me, I drove them away.

In social groups I would approach a conversation and listen for a minute.  What I should have done was quickly asses whether this was an open conversation or private.  If open, I should have listened and acknowledged the points and discussion ideas that were presented.  What I did was interject my thoughts and ideas into the discussion as if I were more authoritative that the other people.  I would often talk over others in conversation, not waiting my turn.

I have worked hard at keeping my mouth shut over the last year.  It is not easy.  There are many times that I see someone doing something or saying something that I think is wrong or missguided and feel like I can save them from themselves.  But, I have also learned that unless asked, my well intentions may not be as welcomed as I would like.

I have learned that in the work place simlar dynamics apply.  For instance, it is a career limiting move (CLM) to talk over the top of your boss.  He may be wrong, but it may not be in your best interest to point that out.  This is a tough area because you usually want to do what is best for the company you work for as your prosperity and theirs are joined together.  You don't want to see your boss lead a team or engage in a management philosophy that either from experience or perception you know will not be in the best interest of the company or team.  Sometimes, you just have to say something - but try to do it as privately as possible.  Do not "out" your boss in front of the team, it will not get you a promotion.  In fact, it may limit your tenure with the company.

When people at work are talking together, you do not need to be part of every conversation.  Most likely they are not talking about you.  Despite expertise in many areas, unless invited to a conversation, your comments may not be as welcome as you think.

Most importantly, if two people are talking about (insert their topic), do not approach the conversation and begin interjecting yourself into the conversation on another topic as if it had any relationship to theirs.

There is much more to this.  I am still piecing together my thoughts so that I can forcefully place them into all my social media pages and make all those who are my friends read them - most won't.  So maybe writing all this is just therapy for me, because my action of doing it seems to fly in the face of the intent of what I am writing about... And now I am rambling...