Prompt 5 in Ali’s 31 Things class is about conversation. When I first thought about this topic, I didn’t initially have a lot of thoughts in relation to it. I sat with it for awhile though, and managed to come up with quite a few ideas about it, which really surprised me!
On any particular day, I speak to a lot of people for work, but not so many on a more personal level. There is only one person that I’m guaranteed to talk to each and every day, and that is Michael. It helps that I live with him, but even if he’s away for work, or I’m away visiting family, we still talk via text and phone calls. Even when we’re at work, we usually send quite a few emails back and forth between us throughout the day. Usually the emails are forwards or funny pictures or quotes to make us laugh, but if we’re making plans for something, it’s often best to do it via email so that we have dates and everything back home to put on the white board so we don’t forget things. One of the most important things I say each day is telling Michael how much he means to me and how much I love him.
I tend to talk to Rebecca pretty regularly too. We text and email a lot to make plans for things, share recipes, ask questions, motivate each other for things like eating well or training, and to bounce ideas off each other. When bored at work we tend to email even more to fill in time. Bec is the one most likely to send me forwards, and is the only person in my family that actually sends emails to me at work. Usually we speak on the phone once or twice a week as well, although sometimes more when we’re planning something. When we get together in person, we can chat for hours as well.
Samantha isn’t as big at chatting to her big sister. She doesn’t call or text as much, and it can sometimes be a week or 2 before I hear from her. Usually our calls are pretty brief asking questions and getting help with things, or are a few text messages back and forth. When we chat in person though, we manage to talk a lot more. Usually this is late at night as one of us is heading in or out at Mum’s, and it usually involves one of us making cups of tea.
Mum and I tend to communicate mostly through phone calls, but occasionally through Facebook messages as well. She’s the only other person in the family that uses Facebook as much as I do still. We usually talk at least once a week, about whatever strikes our fancy, to check in with what’s new, and give updates about the goings on. We also have some good conversations when I’m visiting as well, since it’s so much nicer to sit and talk in person.
Dad’s not that big a communicator, either. When we see each other in person, we tend to chat a lot, usually for a few hours at a time, but when it comes to technology, he can’t really text or email, and doesn’t like talking on the phone that much either. We usually talk every 2 weeks or so, when I realise it’s been awhile and call to see what’s new.
Apart from talking to family on the phone, I tend not to really make calls to people very often, or even answer them. Since I work in a call centre and I’m on the phone all day 5 days a week, it’s nice to have a break when I get home. I still use my phone a lot though. Being an iPhone, it’s nice to have the internet at my fingertips, along with being able to text, take photos and use whatever apps appeal to me at the time. It a nice change to most of my previous phones, that never really had apps or internet on them, that’s for sure!
At work, it’s great to be able to sit down and chat to people face-to-face, although sometimes it can be hard when calls keep coming through, and a conversation can take awhile. Lunch breaks are good now that we’re such a big team, since it means that there is usually always someone else on lunch at the same time to get to have a proper conversation. We’ve recently had communicator put on the work computers, which is similar to MSN messenger, and it is great to be able to chat to other people in the team, even if they sit across the room. It makes it much easier to ask questions as well, which is always good too! I’ve gone for coffee and dinner with some of the girls there too, which is nice since it gives us a chance to have proper conversations without calls coming in constantly! Since we’re a helpdesk team, we only really have calls from other staff, most of who are in a rush to get off the phone, so there isn’t much conversation there, but there are a few regulars who call up who will always say hi and see what’s up, not that I’ll ever meet these people in person. Working on the phones all day does have a tendency to turn a person off phone calls though!
I find Facebook is a great way to stay in touch with people as well, especially the friends and family I don’t get to see often as they live too far away. Private messages are great, but it’s also nice to be able to keep up with what they are doing via status updates and photos. Another benefit is I have everyone’s birthdays on hand as well, which makes it much easier to remember sometimes! I do find that birthday’s tend to be a bit more impersonal with facebook though, since so many people send generic messages, so I tend to text a person instead for a more personal touch. Texting is another great way to keep in touch!
As can probably be told by how much I write, I tend to be a talker. I can pretty much always come up with something to say and have been known to talk for hours. Mum and Nan used to always joke that I could talk underwater, and have always teased me that I never used to shut up! I don’t mind too much though, because I know it’s true, and I know it came from them, since they both used to be the same! I do try to be a good listener too, and will be there for anyone who needs someone to talk to for whatever reason. I have a lot of people open up to me, because they know if they tell me something in confidence, I won’t ever tell anyone. I apparently used to be quite good at giving advice too, since everyone used to come to me when they needed it, although I try not to give advice as much anymore, since I don’t always like people giving it to me.
It’s actually weird that I’m such a talker though, since I’m actually rather shy. I always have been, and I think talking is my way of hiding it a bit. I’ve always been a bit of an introvert though, although since high school, I have come out of my shell a lot more. Running poker tournaments for a living, and working in a club tend to help with that a lot! I used to have to use the microphone on a regular basic, and was basically paid to chat to people and be social, which is always helpful to someone not so good at those things. My confidence grew greatly at that point in time! I hate public speaking. I guess that makes sense for the shy, introverted side of me, but I’m actually rather good at it when I try. I used to speak really fast and with jumble words, but if try to slow it down, I can speak from just bullet points rather than reading, which is always a good skill to have. This especially came in handy for uni presentations, where I had to speak in front of rooms of people!
I tend to enjoy blogs a lot and have done for years now. I read quite a few, and lately, I have taken to responding to posts more often and contributing to the conversations. It’s nice to get to communicate that way, on topics that I find interesting, since I don’t know many real life crafters. When I find their posts and ideas inspiring, I like to let the person know, and if they communicate back, even better! I used to go on some forums like Scrapfreak a lot, but to be honest, I don’t often spend the time to really communicate on them much anymore. It’s a little sad, since they’re often quite good discussions, with the chance to make some good friendships, but it’s much more time intensive. I do tend to read a lot of posts on there still though. The discussion board I’m most active on is the Big Picture Classes one. I quite enjoy going on there and browsing for inspiration on projects that I’m working on and feeling inspired by. I think the sense of community that you get online is one of the reasons that I like blogging so much!
I tend to have a lot of self-talk going on in my head as well. Constant to do lists, ideas, inspiration, thoughts… The list goes on! This can be helpful sometimes, when I’m brainstorming or trying to remember things, but I find it can also be quite annoying at times as well. I find my brain tends to end up most active at night, when I need to be sleeping, and there have been many occasions where I’ve ended up having trouble sleeping due to my mind working a mile a minute. Sometimes when this happens, I’ve been known to get up, go to the craft room and just write to get it all down and clear my head. Sometimes this works, but sometimes when I lie back down, I have a million more ideas, which can be frustrating! There has been times where I’ve gotten up 3 times to do this and still had trouble sleeping! I’m a big list maker though, and love writing things down so that I can get them out of my brain, and don’t have to worry about forgetting them. Writing does tend to help organise my thoughts though, and clear out some of the constant chatter going on in there!