Hi, my name is Hayley and I’m an interrupter.
Before you argue with me, let me tell you what I think you are going to say,
“No you’re not Hayley, you never interrupt me.”
Case in point, I just did.
You know why? Because I know what you are going to say before the words are on your tongue. I know them completely, that’s why I don’t need you to complete them. Most of my life I have considered interruption a communication skill in the category of active listening, and boy am I active. I’m like a 60 lb. puppy whose owner just got home; I’m so interested in communication that I interrupt every step you take from the door to the couch. It’s not that I’m trying to interrupt, I just can’t seem to control my excitement. It’s like I’m riding a wild mustang without any reins, and she’s all over the place!
It’s a two-fold problem as I see it. I really do believe I know what you are about to say. That combined with the fact that I don’t have the patience to wait for you to say it, and suddenly you are unnecessary, I’ve got this conversation covered, you just sit back and relax, I’ll take it from here. Yeah, that’s at the root of my conversation confusion, and it’s as frustrating to me as it is to you.
Okay, maybe not, but it bothers me a little.
I do think there is a type of interruptor who interrupts just because they want to switch the topic back to themselves, but that’s really not me, I just want to cover as much ground as possible in this special time we have together. I’m what experts call, weird:
I prefer quantity over quality.
The other day my husband had to start his conversation over with me three times, because of my incorrect interruption insights. It went something like this:
PastorHoney: So the neighbor told me . . .
Hayley: Ooo, that we could use his boat?
PastorHoney: No, he said that he was going to. .
Hayley: Oh, he’s going to sell it isn’t he?
PastorHoney: No, let me try this a third time. (That’s the cue that interrupts my interruption.) The neighbor told me that he saw a groundhog in the yard.
What?! How could I have gotten the conversation that wrong? You know, it makes me think that when I talk with people who don’t know me as well as PastorHoney, I might actually be getting the conversation all wrong when I speak for them. Ugh! How is that just now occurring to me? It’s so hard when you first realize that you might not be as omniscient as you thought you were. Didn’t see that coming!
What is it that the Bible says about my mouth? “Even a fool who keeps silent is considered wise; when he closes his lips, he is deemed intelligent.” (Proverbs 17:28) Or in words that I can perhaps better understand, “Even an impatient woman who knows what you are going to say before you say it, but doesn’t, is considered a good conversationalist; when she shuts up and listens, she doesn’t look so stupid.” Yeah, that hits me right on the head. Talk less, listen more, even if it takes them forever to get the point…
Love let’s them take all the time they need.
Sister, I am truly sorry if I have interrupted you in the past, I’ll try not to do it again, but I can’t be sure I’ll succeed. If I fail, just touch my arm and give me the look, and I’ll hammer the nail in the coffin of my interruption, at least for that conversation. 🙂