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Why the Wise Don't Yield and Why You Shouldn't Allow Being Interrupted.


Warum der Klügere nicht nachgibt und Du nicht zulassen solltest, im Gespräch unterbrochen zu werden.

Most of us have been interrupted in conversation at some point, or have even interrupted others in conversation ourselves. It happens to me all the time. I mean, I interrupt other people from time to time, even if I should know better. But I'm a typical man. I don't do it out of malice, just out of impatience and the nagging fear of losing my train of thought. But the crux of the matter is this: Sometimes interruptions can be very unpleasant and completely inappropriate.



What should you do, if you are interrupted during a conversation?

If you allow yourself to be interrupted constantly and without resistance, you will experience a loss of respect for better or worse. Allowing others to ignore your contributions or interrupt you can negatively impact the perception of your authority and self-confidence.


It cannot be emphasised enough how important it is to assert your voice in conversations and ensure that your opinions and ideas are heard.


To do this, confrontation with the other person is unavoidable. However, many people find this difficult because they mistakenly confuse it with aggression. A confrontation is not aggressive per se. It is just clear and direct. It puts something in front of your eyes and ears. It draws attention. And that's exactly the point. You reclaim the attention. This has nothing to do with rudeness; on the contrary, you are demanding politeness.


Experience has shown that a brief but firm statement is enough to take back control. For example, it is enough to say: «You - are - interrupting - me - for - the - third - time.» Or: «I - am - not - finished - yet.» Such a message is not an indignant judgement, but merely a statement that does not go unnoticed by those present and immediately demands respect.



Repeat slowly and do not give in


Of course, it can happen that some people will nonetheless interrupt several times in a row. In such a case, you simply have to repeat it. If necessary, even five times or simply until the penny drops. This may seem tedious at first, but it plays into your hands. If the people in the group see that you are not giving in, it will increase your respect all the more.


However, you should pay attention to your tone. You must not sound indignant or like a crybaby. Otherwise it won't work. Your voice must remain as relaxed as possible, but still sound determined. The tempo should be slow and not rushed.


Confident body language is just as important. Because although we hear with our ears, we mainly believe what we see with our eyes. And even if you get over yourself and say: «You - interrupt - me - now - for - the - third - time», but your body language conveys uncertainty and fear, this is exactly what will stick on the other side. Ergo, you and your words will still not be taken seriously.


Standing up to them and enduring this confrontation may take some effort, especially at the beginning. But it's always worth it, because it will earn you respect and authority in the form of compound interest. After all, people will be wary of interrupting or ignoring you in similar situations in the future.



Is there an alternative strategy?


No. Because what should this alternative be?


Friendly appeasement does not work. Appeals to politeness seem a little out of place. Indignation is a sign of weakness and ignoring is a form of affirmation. None of these approaches is an option. All of these strategies end in a boomerang. You shouldn't be under any illusions here. The popular saying «discretion is the better part of valor» is particularly bad advice at this point.



 

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