Listening

I met one of my friends for lunch the other day, and all over sudden, I had this situation again where I could hear her speaking to me, but I couldn`t understand a word she said. It was as if she was speaking a foreign language, and this happens to me regularly if someone speaks to me but hasn`t got my full attention. If my mind is elsewhere, or if people speak about something I don`t know anything about or am just not interested in (God, that sounds awful, but it`s the truth!) I switch off and just cannot switch back on again if it`s one of those lengthy monologues.

I can`t even tell you what it was about this time. I think it had something to do with Pakistan. Probably politics or television, as she`s really into those but I am not. Groups are fine as someone will always say something, and then there`ll be a discussion, but on my own, I have nothing to contribute, so it inevitably becomes a monologue – and I switch off. Someone else has a habit of speaking in excruciating detail about someone else`s children. For my husband, it`s his speedway – technical issues, rider injuries, league tables. Eventually, I`ll be asked a question, and then I`ll have to admit that I haven`t been paying attention.

Am I on my own in that I really cannot listen and process information if others are talking about things that are so irrelevant to me? It seems so abstract that it really seems like a foreign language. I`m yet to find a better description.

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4 thoughts on “Listening

  1. Charis says:

    You are certainly not alone – people are not interested in the same topic and because of that it’s no wonder to think of themes which are more relevant to myself. Sounds like a foreign language? This is not the same in my case – often I heard a sentence and got the line again {is this right for the german expression ‘Faden wiederaufnehmen’? Please correct if not}.
    Sometimes I was wrong but in their endless monologue people repeat their opinion several times and it was no difficulty to me … 😉

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    • culbia says:

      I sometimes think people repeat themselves because you don`t comment on it. Obviously, I don`t want to tell people that they are boring me, but I wish they`d be more receptive of nonverbal cues such as not contributing, eyes wandering…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Vic says:

    I’m the same way – I zone out a lot when people talk on and on about stuff I don’t have much input on like the Kardashians or gossip about family members. I like to overthink things in general, so my mind is always wandering 🙂

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    • culbia says:

      Celebrities are another prime example. A friend of mine who knows once introduced a topic very tactfully. She said “Do you know who Bruce Jenner is? Well, announced last night that he wants to live as a woman from now on…” and we had a good discussion on the matter. Most people however would just say: “What do you think about Bruce Jenner? Can you imagine being his daughter, and your dad coming out with THAT?” And everybody else would start talking about it, and I wouldn`t have a clue what “that” is. Eventually, someone would notice that I hadn`t voiced an opinion yet and ask me, and then I`d have to admit that I was pondering about what to cook for dinner tonight… And I`m often embarrassed to ask, as I don`t want to seem uneducated.

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