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How to combat inarticulateness?

HoneycurlsHoneycurls Posts: 1,889Registered Users
The vocabulary is beyond adequate; it just seems to be intermittently inaccessible during oral communication, and it's not always the $100 words. Sometimes I simply cannot express myself, regardless of how simple the words, sentiment, concept, etc. Some of it is nerves and is situational and to be expected, but not the degree to which I suffer. Often, I find myself "rehearsing" things I'm going to say, words I'm going to use, and points I'm going to make; however, clearly, that won't suffice for spontaneous conversations or conversations of any significant length. This has a profound effect on my self-confidence, which is crucial when I'm interviewing for an important position...as was the case yesterday.

Suggestions? Speech therapy is likely not an option at this time.
OK, I admit it.....I'm an alias! I wasn't born with the name Honeycurls!
:lurk: Dood, get over it; there's no time limit on lurking.

I so busy runnin' allllllll over the place and ain't nobody chasin' me! :confused5::laughing5::jocolor:
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  • The New BlackThe New Black Posts: 16,738Registered Users
    You're an INTJ/P, I take it?

    I have the same problem. :(

    I don't have the answer though...Maybe others will be able to help us!
    montage-3.gif No MAS.

    I am the new Black.

    "Hope the Mail are saving space tomorrow for Samantha Brick's reaction piece on the reactions to her piece about the reactions to her piece." ~ Tweet reposted by Rou.
  • HoneycurlsHoneycurls Posts: 1,889Registered Users
    Since I'm not familiar with that, I guess not? :dontknow:
    OK, I admit it.....I'm an alias! I wasn't born with the name Honeycurls!
    :lurk: Dood, get over it; there's no time limit on lurking.

    I so busy runnin' allllllll over the place and ain't nobody chasin' me! :confused5::laughing5::jocolor:
  • HoneycurlsHoneycurls Posts: 1,889Registered Users
    So, wow, after some quick research, I guess I am INTJ. Haven't found what the "P" is yet, though.

    Strange to see so many of your characteristics listed in written form like a recipe for your psyche. Thanks for the unintentional tip! I'll have to do more in-depth reading when I have time.
    OK, I admit it.....I'm an alias! I wasn't born with the name Honeycurls!
    :lurk: Dood, get over it; there's no time limit on lurking.

    I so busy runnin' allllllll over the place and ain't nobody chasin' me! :confused5::laughing5::jocolor:
  • SystemSystem Posts: 39,059 Administrator
    I tend to be too wordy and the meaning of what I am trying to say gets lost because I go round and round in circles. Hmmm...rephrase: I say too much and my main point is lost in too many words.
  • HoneycurlsHoneycurls Posts: 1,889Registered Users
    BeckStar wrote: »
    I tend to be too wordy and the meaning of what I am trying to say gets lost because I go round and round in circles. Hmmm...rephrase: I say too much and my main point is lost in too many words.

    Yes, that's the other side of my verbal communication coin--talking a lot to compensate and ultimately saying nothing.
    OK, I admit it.....I'm an alias! I wasn't born with the name Honeycurls!
    :lurk: Dood, get over it; there's no time limit on lurking.

    I so busy runnin' allllllll over the place and ain't nobody chasin' me! :confused5::laughing5::jocolor:
  • Rubber BiscuitRubber Biscuit Posts: 1,294Registered Users
    I'm afraid I have nothing constructive to contribute, but I suffer from the same problem.

    Oddly enough, I do have to say that, when I wear my eyeglasses, I tend to suffer less from this problem!
    - Seek first to understand, then to be understood.
    - Character is how you treat those who can do nothing for you.
  • HoneycurlsHoneycurls Posts: 1,889Registered Users
    The support that comes from sharing is very constructive! Just knowing that others also struggle with this--others who seem to be very articulate in written communication--is somewhat comforting. Not that I'm glad you suffer with this affliction as well, but I know you know what I mean!

    I'll have to try the glasses trick...why not? Can't hurt! I usually only wear my glasses when driving or traveling in a car.
    OK, I admit it.....I'm an alias! I wasn't born with the name Honeycurls!
    :lurk: Dood, get over it; there's no time limit on lurking.

    I so busy runnin' allllllll over the place and ain't nobody chasin' me! :confused5::laughing5::jocolor:
  • SystemSystem Posts: 39,059 Administrator
    It becomes easier if you have a good friend that you can talk to who will honestly tell you when you're not making any sense or rambling too much. But be forewarned though if you have sensitive feelings, it can feel like harsh critizism at first but it really does make it easier and easier to achieve clarity in communicating your thoughts and feelings.
  • RedCatWavesRedCatWaves Posts: 31,258Registered Users
    Half a valium or a stiff drink is my cure for my version of the affliction. I'm usually OK in small settings, but with groups, or with someone who intimidates me, I have much trouble finding the right words. Verbally, that is. (I have no trouble when writing.)
  • HoneycurlsHoneycurls Posts: 1,889Registered Users
    BeckStar wrote: »
    It becomes easier if you have a good friend that you can talk to who will honestly tell you when you're not making any sense or rambling too much. But be forewarned though if you have sensitive feelings, it can feel like harsh critizism at first but it really does make it easier and easier to achieve clarity in communicating your thoughts and feelings.

    LOL, oh, believe me...I know when I'm rambling disconnectedly, because I'm unable to connect my own thoughts and points, so if *I* no longer understand what I'm saying, surely no one else does either! I go into a situation knowing it's going to happen--which I'm sure further exacerbates the problem.
    Half a valium or a stiff drink is my cure for my version of the affliction. I'm usually OK in small settings, but with groups, or with someone who intimidates me, I have much trouble finding the right words. Verbally, that is. (I have no trouble when writing.)

    If I thought they couldn't smell the booze on my breath I might try that! And, unfortunately, valium has never had much effect on me--which I had to discover the hard way. But, yes, your description mirrors my own situation almost exactly.
    OK, I admit it.....I'm an alias! I wasn't born with the name Honeycurls!
    :lurk: Dood, get over it; there's no time limit on lurking.

    I so busy runnin' allllllll over the place and ain't nobody chasin' me! :confused5::laughing5::jocolor:
  • ursulaursula Posts: 1,461Registered Users
    Like Rubber Biscuit, I don't have any suggestions for you, but I also suffer from the same problem. And, like RedCatWaves, I find that a glass of wine or other alcoholic drink usually helps (but, unfortunately, is not appropriate in most professional situations).

    I had an interview a couple of weeks ago that I thought I had bombed for precisely this reason, but they actually have called me back for a second interview. So sometimes you're not sounding as inarticulate as you think you are! However, if you think this is an issue that could be preventing you from landing a good job, what about looking into jobs/careers that emphasize written communication over verbal? Journalism, or something like that?
    You're an INTJ/P, I take it?

    I have the same problem. :(

    I don't have the answer though...Maybe others will be able to help us!

    This is too funny! I actually am an INTJ/P! (I seem to be between J and P). I never thought about this problem being related to my personality type. Makes sense, though.
    In search of a lost signature...
  • The New BlackThe New Black Posts: 16,738Registered Users
    Yeah, it's a common "I" problem. We're more comfortable alone or, at least, we find being among people draining. I think it's something you can retrain yourself out of, like a stutter.
    montage-3.gif No MAS.

    I am the new Black.

    "Hope the Mail are saving space tomorrow for Samantha Brick's reaction piece on the reactions to her piece about the reactions to her piece." ~ Tweet reposted by Rou.
  • HoneycurlsHoneycurls Posts: 1,889Registered Users
    ursula wrote: »
    Like Rubber Biscuit, I don't have any suggestions for you, but I also suffer from the same problem. And, like RedCatWaves, I find that a glass of wine or other alcoholic drink usually helps (but, unfortunately, is not appropriate in most professional situations).

    I had an interview a couple of weeks ago that I thought I had bombed for precisely this reason, but they actually have called me back for a second interview. So sometimes you're not sounding as inarticulate as you think you are! However, if you think this is an issue that could be preventing you from landing a good job, what about looking into jobs/careers that emphasize written communication over verbal? Journalism, or something like that?
    You're an INTJ/P, I take it?

    I have the same problem. :(

    I don't have the answer though...Maybe others will be able to help us!

    This is too funny! I actually am an INTJ/P! (I seem to be between J and P). I never thought about this problem being related to my personality type. Makes sense, though.

    Thanks, ursula. In this particular instance, I believe I'll still get the job, as long as whatever unseen enemy I've been battling all along in my job search doesn't rear its ugly head again. There was only one obvious awkward moment where I couldn't find the word "confidence." Otherwise, I believe I bluffed my way through fairly well.

    I'm actually far more suited for a career in writing, I think, but at this time, I have to work with what I've got, which is a degree and experience in the medical field. If I don't get this job, however, I am going to have to quickly rethink my strategy and look at going back to school, so maybe....
    OK, I admit it.....I'm an alias! I wasn't born with the name Honeycurls!
    :lurk: Dood, get over it; there's no time limit on lurking.

    I so busy runnin' allllllll over the place and ain't nobody chasin' me! :confused5::laughing5::jocolor:
  • ninja dogninja dog Posts: 23,780Registered Users
    Do you read a lot? Is there a character with whom you identify? Maybe putting yourself in that (articulate) character's shoes when you're in a challenging situation would help.
  • HoneycurlsHoneycurls Posts: 1,889Registered Users
    Yeah, it's a common "I" problem. We're more comfortable alone or, at least, we find being among people draining. I think it's something you can retrain yourself out of, like a stutter.

    THIS!!!! YES!!! I used to come home from work completely emotionally and physically drained, and it had nothing to do with physical exertion during the day.

    So, what's the "P" stand for?
    OK, I admit it.....I'm an alias! I wasn't born with the name Honeycurls!
    :lurk: Dood, get over it; there's no time limit on lurking.

    I so busy runnin' allllllll over the place and ain't nobody chasin' me! :confused5::laughing5::jocolor:
  • The New BlackThe New Black Posts: 16,738Registered Users
    ^^^Perceptive/perception

    This one was hard for me to understand. Basically it translates to decisive (J) vs. indecisive (P) for me.
    montage-3.gif No MAS.

    I am the new Black.

    "Hope the Mail are saving space tomorrow for Samantha Brick's reaction piece on the reactions to her piece about the reactions to her piece." ~ Tweet reposted by Rou.
  • mrspoppersmrspoppers Posts: 7,223Registered Users
    I have the same problem. Medication for social anxiety has helped, as has taking the Dale Carnegie course. Dale Carnegie helped because if gave me a controlled, safe environment to practice my communication skills.

    For interviews specifically, I write down answers to all the common interview questions and practice saying them out loud. I hired an interview coach, which was well worth the $200.
    When are women going to face the fact that they don’t know their own bodies as well as men who have heard things?

    Don Langrick
    Bonsai Culturist
  • kaybkayb Posts: 5,054Registered Users
    Maybe try Toastmasters? It's a great way to work on the problem and build an incredible network of friends.

    Toastmasters International - Home
    I ain't thirsty. There's plenty of fish in the sea, but I don't want all of them, can I have some standards? Or do we just have to settle, for someone's who meh and will do.
    "
  • JewelCurlsJewelCurls Posts: 191Registered Users
    You could join a social club that specializes in networking, or in speaking, like toastmasters.
    You can't stop my happiness 'cuz I like the way I am! -Hairspray
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  • HoneycurlsHoneycurls Posts: 1,889Registered Users
    ninja dog wrote: »
    Do you read a lot? Is there a character with whom you identify? Maybe putting yourself in that (articulate) character's shoes when you're in a challenging situation would help.

    As a child, I had a voracious appetite for reading. It was all I did for fun for much of my childhood. We were poor, lived far from a library and were without a car after a certain point, so I read the same books over and over or I sneaked my mom's books. That's how I amassed a relatively large vocabulary early on. Then, as a teen, I was a black-out drunk, self-medicating myself with whichever mind-altering substances I could get my hands on. This stopped for the most part after about age 18--when I removed myself from that particular toxic atmosphere. Now I drink only on rare special occasions--and very little even then. Many years later, after hearing that excessive alcohol intake can cause atrophy of parts of the brain, I suspected that this may be the culprit, but an MRI last month showed a brain without atrophy--much to my surprise.

    These days, I'm battling some depression, so my attention span doesn't allow for much reading. I have terrible difficulty focusing or even feeling interested in reading. It makes me very sad when I think back to how much pleasure I used to derive from reading. It was my escape before I discovered alcohol.
    OK, I admit it.....I'm an alias! I wasn't born with the name Honeycurls!
    :lurk: Dood, get over it; there's no time limit on lurking.

    I so busy runnin' allllllll over the place and ain't nobody chasin' me! :confused5::laughing5::jocolor:
  • fraufrau Posts: 6,130Registered Users
    why not express yourself more here.
    practice with us!
  • HoneycurlsHoneycurls Posts: 1,889Registered Users
    frau wrote: »
    why not express yourself more here.
    practice with us!

    Why...so you can just ignore me? :wink: LOL...I know you "corrected" your "omission." I checked before I commented here.

    Haha, I have been since losing my job! I used to be a 100% lurker for years. I have to say that being a member here has definitely increased my vocabulary, so it HAS helped already in that respect. I avoid excessive posting because I don't want to get caught up in too much drama. Have enough of that in my personal life right now. And, I tend not to get anything done around the house if I get too involved in something on the computer.
    OK, I admit it.....I'm an alias! I wasn't born with the name Honeycurls!
    :lurk: Dood, get over it; there's no time limit on lurking.

    I so busy runnin' allllllll over the place and ain't nobody chasin' me! :confused5::laughing5::jocolor:
  • wild_sasparillawild_sasparilla Posts: 4,306Registered Users
    Honeycurls wrote: »
    ninja dog wrote: »
    Do you read a lot? Is there a character with whom you identify? Maybe putting yourself in that (articulate) character's shoes when you're in a challenging situation would help.

    As a child, I had a voracious appetite for reading. It was all I did for fun for much of my childhood. We were poor, lived far from a library and were without a car after a certain point, so I read the same books over and over or I sneaked my mom's books. That's how I amassed a relatively large vocabulary early on. Then, as a teen, I was a black-out drunk, self-medicating myself with whichever mind-altering substances I could get my hands on. This stopped for the most part after about age 18--when I removed myself from that particular toxic atmosphere. Now I drink only on rare special occasions--and very little even then. Many years later, after hearing that excessive alcohol intake can cause atrophy of parts of the brain, I suspected that this may be the culprit, but an MRI last month showed a brain without atrophy--much to my surprise.

    These days, I'm battling some depression, so my attention span doesn't allow for much reading. I have terrible difficulty focusing or even feeling interested in reading. It makes me very sad when I think back to how much pleasure I used to derive from reading. It was my escape before I discovered alcohol.

    I also read voraciously as a child, including while walking (I'm lucky I had friends to shout "POLE!" for me every once in a while), and even though we did live near a library, I could only get there so often, lol. I was always sneaking whatever books I could reach, because though my parents tried to keep me stocked with reading material, they were fighting a losing battle. I'm sure we learned some interesting stuff that way. :wink: I also relate to your last paragraph...I'm dealing with some depression, too, and I hate not even feeling that itch to open a good book. A book I pre-ordered just arrived for me two days ago, so I should be over the moon and halfway through it by now, but it's like I've somehow reverse-metamorphosed and become a caterpillar when I used to be a butterfly. Everything's so heavy and slow. I'm determined to make myself read this book, though, because I know I'll love it and I hope that after I get myself started, I'll be eager to continue like I always was. I at least want reading back! I hope you get your spark back soon, HC.

    As for the initial topic of the thread, I'm definitely an introvert - being in large crowds is exhausting for me and conversations with people I don't know, at least when I need to make a good impression, feel like a walk on a tightrope. I'm a work in progress, but in my teen years was when I started really teaching myself how to cover for that. I've found that when I have some focus, like "I must show this person how useful I am so I can do XYZ here," it's no longer about me being uncomfortable; it's about accomplishing a goal, and I am all over that. The tightrope walk becomes an exhibition of skill, like I'm a performer in a circus instead of just some poor sap that got pushed out onto a wobbly rope against her will. Losing words was never a big problem for me, but being and looking anxious certainly was, and this is something that I've found helps. I can also say from experience that after years of doing it, it'll pretty much become second nature, so that's a plus! If the anxiety really builds up to the point of wanting to fidget and maybe distracting yourself with controlling your body (IDK if this is an issue for you at all), I've read that curling your toes in your shoes is a good way to get rid of that nervous energy without anyone being the wiser - I plan to try that myself the next time my buffer's walked away and left me in the middle of a crowd.
    OMG, LOOK!!

    ...It's a siggie. :shock:
  • KatiecurlKatiecurl Posts: 236Registered Users
    Like others have said, this is a common problem w/introverts... I highly recommend reading "The Introvert Advantage" by Marti Laney... it really changed my life!
    2a/b. I love AOHR!
  • nynaeve77nynaeve77 Posts: 7,135Registered Users
    My husband is much the same way. He tends to sort of think out loud, especially when problem solving, which translates to a lot of people as rambling. He's also an introvert and finds being around people all day draining. Oddly, he's a very good public speaker; he says it's because he can prepare in advance and he's in control of the situation. However, he finds conversation (especially in group settings, like dinner parties) very difficult because off-topic thoughts throw him for a loop.
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  • ursulaursula Posts: 1,461Registered Users
    Yeah, it's a common "I" problem. We're more comfortable alone or, at least, we find being among people draining. I think it's something you can retrain yourself out of, like a stutter.

    The "I" part makes sense, but I was surprised by the "NT" part!
    In search of a lost signature...
  • EilonwyEilonwy Posts: 12,389Registered Users
    Honeycurls wrote: »
    If I thought they couldn't smell the booze on my breath I might try that!
    You may want to look into using beta-blockers for anxiety. Unlike sedatives, they won't interfere with your ability to think or remember, and they're not addictive. A beta-blocker is a type of medication for treating high blood pressure. You can just take a dose of beta-blocker before or during stressful situations. It will stop the cycle of anxiety leading to higher blood pressure leading to more anxiety leading to even higher blood pressure, etc. Yeah, I'm totally pimping them. But as someone with an anxiety disorder, I find that they're pretty much the best thing ever.

    A good way to become more articulate is to talk to yourself--when you're alone, of course. It's great practice for putting your thoughts into words.
  • wild_sasparillawild_sasparilla Posts: 4,306Registered Users
    nynaeve77 wrote: »
    Oddly, he's a very good public speaker; he says it's because he can prepare in advance and he's in control of the situation.

    Public speaking is totally different to me, too. If you're gonna put me in a room with a crowd of strangers, you'd better either put me in a corner or onstage. It's like the energy that just hangs around you to be sapped away becomes a tool you can use, and you're the one deciding where it goes, if that makes any sense. I also love a written or verbal chance to entertain people in general.
    OMG, LOOK!!

    ...It's a siggie. :shock:
  • cymprenicympreni Posts: 9,609Registered Users
    nynaeve77 wrote: »
    Oddly, he's a very good public speaker; he says it's because he can prepare in advance and he's in control of the situation.

    Public speaking is totally different to me, too. If you're gonna put me in a room with a crowd of strangers, you'd better either put me in a corner or onstage. It's like the energy that just hangs around you to be sapped away becomes a tool you can use, and you're the one deciding where it goes, if that makes any sense. I also love a written or verbal chance to entertain people in general.

    I'm the same way. I've never done any public speaking, but I have no problems performing. I don't get stage anxiety at all. I worry more about being late, or picking out the perfect outfit then getting up on stage. I don't even care if I make mistakes. I know exactly what I need to do, and have realistic expectations. My goal is to be entertaining, not perfect.

    After the performance is a different story. Having a bunch of people approaching me afterwards . . . I appreciate the compliments, but it gets really overwhelming. I feel like I have a hundred people surrounding me, and staring at me and I have no idea what to do. lol
  • wild_sasparillawild_sasparilla Posts: 4,306Registered Users
    I so relate to all of that, cympreni! Having done a little of both, I think performing's even better than public speaking in this way, probably because there's even more emphasis on being entertaining over anything else. Makes it kind of a shock walking back down where all the people are, though. lol It's just like what you said, overwhelming. After performing my final scene in my acting class in college, I could feel the muscles in my face and body tensing as I walked offstage. I wish I could just will them to relax. I've sure done a lot of trying!
    OMG, LOOK!!

    ...It's a siggie. :shock:
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