I think I may have noticed at least one reason why so many people get so pissed off and exhausted with me all the time. At first I just thought it was because of a lack of compatibility when it comes to personalities but I think of it at least some of it is something else.
I didn’t notice it until I recognized the behaviour in another person. Which is strange because often I’ve noticed is that I don’t recognize behaviours in other people and why they do them until I recognize them in myself. I had to go and ask a question to this person in preparation for something because their initial instructions they gave were not clear. However, when I asked him, instead of answering my question, he went off on this tangent for almost ten minutes that was sort of related to what I was saying but not really. He wouldn’t stop talking until eventually there was enough of an opening in the conversation where I could interrupt and ask the same question again. Again he went on another tangent and didn’t answer the question for maybe another five minutes. Eventually I was able to get an answer to the question I think the third time I asked. In took him ten seconds to answer…In other words, maybe 15 minutes of my time could have been saved, but I had to wait for that length of time to eventually get an answer to a question after listening to a 15 minute tangent I did not go to him to hear.
However, I just realized I do the same thing. I have to give presentations to people, and I record myself to see if I am not explaining something well, but sometimes at the end of the presentation when people are leaving, someone will come up to me when people are leaving and ask me a basic question about something, and when I go back and listen to the recording I realized that I do almost the same thing (though I don’t think anywhere near to the same extent). Instead of just answering the question, I end up answering a different question to the one they asked, or just discussing tangentially-related information, which forces them to have to wait and stand there until I’ve finished before asking their question again which often only takes 10 seconds to answer. Which wastes a huge amount of their time.
It’s as if by not answering the question and talking about irrelevant information that allows me to drag on the conversation as long as possible. Because by just answering the question the conversation ends. I think I’m doing this because my desire to have a conversation is overriding giving this person what they want. They didn’t come up to me to start a conversation. They came up to me to just extract some basic conversation, and by not giving them this and going on a tangent about irrelevant information all that indicates is a complete selfishness on my part.
The other reason why this is a problem is that if that the person MAY have wanted to have a conversation with me at some point in the future had I not done this. But the exhaustion this produces in the other person causes them to be reluctant to ever start any conversation.
I’ve noticed though that this also translates to the way I talk to certain people even when they DO want to have a conversation. I’m so focused on what I want to talk about that that I don’t realize the trajectory that they want the conversation to go in which I think leaves them feeling frustrated. I don’t think this is really a problem with people you vibe with (as they will want the conversation to go in the same direction anyway, probably), but this is a problem with people that you don’t.
Does anyone else have a similar experience?
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