Do you notice that you tend to complete what people say and make them react badly to it? They can tolerate this habit the first few times, but if it occurs frequently, it can become annoying and damage interpersonal relationships. However, you may not have realized that it is actually normal. This can be a sign of insecurity, impatience, excitement or understanding on the part of the person doing it. It could also be a sign of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD. However, if you recognize that you have a problem and learn to focus on what others are saying, you can kick this habit.
Part 1 of 3: Practice Silence to Stop Interrupting Others
Step 1. Ask for help
If you know you have a serious problem with this habit, ask your family and friends for help. Let them know that you know you do and ask them to point it out to you when you interrupt conversations. This may make you more aware of the behavior and help you to gradually let go of it.
Remember that your family and friends will be happy to help you, and there is nothing wrong with mentioning the problem to them. This is a measure that will help you stop a bad habit. If having “high engagement” conversations is part of your family's culture, you may need to ask your friends or even close co-workers to tell you if you complete what others say
Step 2. Listen to a song silently
Before interacting with people, listen to one of your favorite songs quietly. It may seem difficult, but it can help you focus on staying quiet during conversations.
Try this technique in other situations. If a friend or family member is on the phone, just sit down and say nothing. Respond in your mind if necessary, but focus on yourself and not saying anything
Step 3. Write what you want to say
In many cases, you can perform this behavior because you don't want to forget something clever you want to say in response. You can memorize it and then return to this point when the person finishes, or write down what you wanted to say so you don't forget it.
Use this technique in formal settings or even with friends if you have a hard time stopping this habit. You can say, "I'm trying to improve my ability to focus on what people are saying, instead of reacting to it."
Step 4. Answer in your mind
If you are participating in a conversation or listening to something that interests you, give yourself the opportunity to "respond" in your mind. Make sure the person has finished speaking completely before responding silently. This sounds difficult, but determining when to start responding is a vital step. Once you answer in your mind, determine if the time is right to respond in person.
Nod your head or just say "Yes" as the person speaks, but nothing else. In addition to reinforcing your desire not to speak, this also shows her that you are paying attention to what she is saying
Step 5. Breathe or pause before speaking
During a conversation, take a deep breath and try to wait until you are absolutely sure that the person has finished speaking. Taking a few deep breaths can help slow your mind and remind you to breathe before you speak. A breath is a natural pause that can help ensure that the other person finishes speaking.
- Take a long breath before you start answering him. If you keep talking when you finish inhaling and exhaling, take another breath. Repeat this procedure until the person is done.
- Gently bite your tongue if breathing isn't working or the sound is hurting your conversation.
Part 2 of 3: Focus on Conversations so You Don't Interrupt Them
Step 1. Remind yourself to be silent
Once you've practiced the act of stopping interrupting others, it's time to get out into the real world. Whenever you start a conversation, there is a danger of completing what the person says. Remember to let people talk and think about your breathing or biting your tongue to stop the bad habit.
Keep in mind that even if you didn't mean badly in interrupting, she might perceive it that way. If you are concerned about what he thinks of you, keep in mind that being silent for a second longer will not hurt you and may actually help you in the long run
Step 2. Pay close attention
To know when to speak or not, you must pay close attention to the conversation. Listening to another person actively will help you focus on them and can prevent you from completing their sentences at inopportune times.
- Put your hand under your chin as a reminder to listen before you speak.
- Observe the person's habits. Does your friend always keep the door open for others? This can show you that they are kind and considerate.
Step 3. Ask him if he's finished talking
If you'd like to say something, but you're not sure if he's finished speaking, consider asking him. Find a polite way to ask the question, which will show her that you are genuinely interested in what she has to say.
Look at his mouth to see if he has finished the statement or sentence. Say, “Is there anything else you would like to say about it? You have some great points and I want to tell you something that I think may contribute to your point of view. "
Step 4. Apologize for interrupting
If you notice that you are engaging in this bad habit, apologize for interrupting. If you do it enough times, you could stop this behavior. This will also show her that you care enough about her and what she has to say to wait.
- Say “I'm very sorry to interrupt you. I was very moved by the subject and I did not want to offend you”.
- Explain to people that you come from a culture where quick exchange and completing what the other person says are common. Tell them that you are trying to improve on this and that you are sorry to interrupt them.
Part 3 of 3: Recognize the problem
Step 1. Observe the reactions of other people
In any conversation, it is important that you pay attention to the people you are talking to. If you are concerned about completing what others say too often or that it will cause problems in your relationships, notice how others react when you practice this bad habit. Their reactions can tell you if you have a problem and if it is affecting their relationships.
Keep in mind that even if you are only trying to show your emotion or intimacy by completing what the other person says, this may not be the message you are expressing. Instead of saying something like "I know and I understand you very well", the person might think "You are putting words in my mouth."
Step 2. Reflect on why you interrupt others
There are a number of reasons why you can perform this behavior. However, not all of them are negative. Maybe you do it because you get excited by the conversation or it is something that is part of your culture. Determining why you are doing this can help you more easily admit that you have a problem.
- Consider your background. Many cultures (including Eastern European, Mediterranean, African, and Arabic) have a type of conversation called "high participation." This means that completing what the other person says is a way of establishing a relationship. If you have grown up in any of these cultures, this could explain why you have this habit.
- Keep in mind that women are more likely to do this. As with some cultures around the world, this is also a way of establishing a bond between people.
- Consider other factors that influence this habit. Are you shy and have a hard time expressing yourself confidently or having a conversation in another way? Do you have a hard time concentrating on the other person? Are you impatient when the person is slow to express their point?
Step 3. Admit it
You probably know that you tend to complete what others say. This could happen in family situations (like a family reunion) or even in formal settings (like work meetings). Either way, perhaps the biggest obstacle to stopping the habit is admitting that you do.
Remember the conversations you have had with people in the past and how they have gone. Have you taken advantage of a pause in the conversation, have you intervened in it or have you directly completed what the other person has said? Acknowledging the ways you interrupt can tell you how bad your problem is
- Remember to relax while listening to the person speak and when you take the floor. This could be more useful to detect any situation in which you practice the bad habit.
- Don't wait too long to join the conversation, as you may never get a chance to say something witty or enlightening.