Over-Talking: The Need to Talk Too MuchBy Dr. Margaret Paul
June 09, 2014
Are you aware of needing to talk too much, or have you been with people who go on and on? There is a good reason for this.
I have found over the years of practicing Inner Bonding that the more I listen to myself, the less need I have for others to listen to me and hear me. Not that I don't enjoy sharing with others, but there is a big difference between sharing and the talking too much that comes from not listening to yourself.
I was having a Skype session with Tara. Tara is a lovely woman in her 40s, married with two children. She is very successful as the CEO of a clothing design company. Yet, in our first session, I immediately saw that Tara was addicted to talking too much. Once she starts, she goes on and on with detail after detail, never coming up for air. The conversation is a monologue, not a dialogue.
Sometimes people talk too much because they are lonely. When someone is willing to listen, they go on and on in an attempt to assuage their loneliness – as well as assuage the aloneness of their self-abandonment.
However, loneliness was not the issue with Tara. Self-abandonment was the issue – in terms of not listening to herself.
Tara had done much inner work before consulting with me, but she had never learned that she had an inner child – her feeling self - who needed to be heard by her. She had shut off from her feelings as a child to survive a very painful childhood, and had never done the work of reconnecting with and listening to her feelings.
As Tara went from one subject to another without a break, I finally stopped her.
"Tara, there must be good reason that you have a need to tell me so much detail and to talk on and on. This is a monologue, not a dialogue, and I can't stay connected to you when we don't talk back and forth."
"Oh, I didn't realize I was doing that. I guess I just want to be heard by you."
"I do hear you and I'd love to connect with you, but you are in your head rather than in your feelings, and I can't connect with you when you are in your head."
"I don't know how to be with my feelings."
"I can help you with that. You can start by breathing into your body, following your breath. Get fully present inside your body, scanning your body, noticing what you feel both physically and emotionally. Take a few moments to be with whatever you feel inside…………What are you aware of feeling?"
"I feel tense in my stomach."
"Breathe into that tension. That is your inner child letting you know that you are abandoning her in some way."
"But I always feel this tension. I can't remember ever not feeling this tension."
"Tara, you had to disconnect from your feelings a long time ago to survive the pain of your childhood, but now you are still disconnecting from your feelings. The tension is your inner child letting you know this, and talking too much is the result of this."
"I always just try to avoid paying attention to the tension."
"Right, and this is why your inner child doesn't feel heard by you. The way she is communicating with you is with this tension, and you are ignoring her and trying to get others to hear you by talking too much."
"Oh! Well, what am I supposed to do with this tension?"
"Ask her what she is trying to tell you with this tension."
Tara asks and her inner child answers: "I'm tense because I feel so alone inside. You ignore me all the time. You don't even know I'm here and that scares me. You treat me just like mom treated me – just ignoring me as if I don't exist."
"Wow! I really didn't know she existed! No wonder she doesn't feel seen and heard by me!"
As Tara started to practice Inner Bonding and attend to her feelings, her talking addiction gradually subsided. She no longer had the big need to be heard by others because she was now hearing herself.
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Who are you giving yourself up to in order to avoid rejection? With whom are you not fully yourself to not face a lack of caring and support if you are all you can be? Are you keeping yourself small to avoid knowing the truth of who really cares about your highest good and who will not support you in being all you can be?
By Dr. Margaret Paul