As far back as I can remember, this idea of “capture” has been paramount in every conversation. It has also hindered the idea of “being brief” (but as you saw in the last post, I think I nailed that one!). It certainly didn’t help me way back when I had to buy minutes for my phone at $1 per minute!
So, to all the friends who tried to have a quick conversation with me over the years, here’s the reason: I am driven by the need to capture thoughts, feelings, ideas, colors, sensations, and any other important details in a situation to best place the listener there.
I try to grab the listener with a piece of the action and then add a feeling or mood so they are transported to that moment. I love watching the smile and the understanding spark on their faces and feel an immense satisfaction when they understand why that situation was so funny/important to me.
I know I’ve failed to capture them when their faces don’t react to the things I’m saying. That’s when I have an even harder time keeping it short. I want to reiterate all the other details until they are finally brought to the situation I’m explaining.
As an adult who knows she’s a writer, I feel less frustration because what I’m actually trying to do is tell a story. And realizing that has taken the compulsivity out of conversations and I can actually listen.
Crazy, the stuff writing teaches you about yourself.