How do you talk?

Have you ever noticed that when you buy a new car, all of a sudden you see a million of the same model driving around when before you’d never noticed them?

That’s how it was with “um’s” and “ah’s.” Every time I opened my mouth, a torrent of unnecessary and annoying filler words tumbled out. My favorites fillers to this day are “so” or for a complete change of pace “and so.”

If you’re a twenty-something then you’re probably addicted to “you know,” “like” and “awesome” as in “Dude, like you know that was so you know like awesome!” Eliminating these crutch words may leave you totally tongue-tied. Give it a try. I dare you.

Now you might think filler words are a trivial preoccupation, but you would be wrong.

Listen to the attractive (and well paid) people on sports broadcasts and talk shows – unscripted situations – and the most illustrious personalities will have virtually no “um’s” “ah’s” or  “likes.”

These successful folks are able to string together a series of sentences containing complete thoughts without pausing, stammering or groping for words.

Of course, these “thoughts” are not necessarily DEEP in the sense of making a difference to mankind. They’re mainly banal chitchat about ball scores and RBI’s and first downs and defensive versus offensive plays and giving 110%, like that’s possible.

But the speakers care passionately about these issues and can go on for hours, especially if there was pass interference. They sound intelligent and profound unless you stop to listen to what they’re actually saying.

Now flip to Jerry Springer. In between all the yelling, screaming, cursing, chair throwing and lunging to whup each other, it’s hard to grasp even an occasional word of English.

The Springer folks may all be filthy rich just like the sports commentators, but I doubt it.

Not only do they sound like idiots, but they LOOK like bozos as well, what with the head to toe tattoos and wife-beater t-shirts barely covering their enormous beer bellies. You would not want to invite these tacky people over for dinner.


Because everything about them communicates: “My life is out of control and I am an uncivilized moron!”

Here’s the point: Everything about you communicates something. The way you look. The way you talk. The way you act. The way you react. You cannot NOT communicate what you are.

People who want to be successful start by looking and sounding successful.

So, how do you talk?

This is an excerpt from The Sooner You Laugh the Faster You Heal by Anne Barab. To purchase your copy, CLICK HERE. 

1 Comment

  • Pam Garcy

    Reply Reply December 6, 2017

    Thanks for raising my awareness with this great piece!

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