September 25, 2012
The Jesuit techniques of self-analysis are important in our everyday lives, and it is imperative that we keep these in mind to fulfill who we want to be as people. Practicing self-observation is one of the techniques that are done every day for the Jesuits. I observed myself during the day and was able to connect to the Jesuits and realize what they do is so critical for overall life evaluation. After keeping close track of the ways I communicated for a day I learned more about myself, I realized how others act, and after unplugging all electronics I could focus more on communication in general.
When I truly focused on communicating with others during the day I noticed the ways I communicate, which would be how I talk to others and interact with them. I experienced face-to-face conversation when I talked to my teacher after theology class, as well as when I helped a few kids with their homework at Acts4Youth at their after school program. With this, I could notice how the formality is different in these situations. Talking to a teacher is a lot different than talking to a child. I obviously knew about this beforehand, but when really focusing on it I could see that it is so critical to talk differently to different people to be successful in each of those conversations. I also realized the body language used with the kids. High-fiving and giving thumbs up are smart ways to express to the students at Acts4Youth that they did a great job, which leads into how people can react to communicating. The children take these signs as a positive motivator. Also, when closely watching teachers’ faces during classes here at Loyola, I could see that they would change when students quietly make side comments which would slightly disrupt the class. Even though the teachers do not use words to express this it still is seen that they are annoyed by their facial expression. Other aspects of communication that are used throughout the day are texting friends, calling home, and using the internet. I texted my friends during the day and noticed that however my friends tended to sound over text I would unconsciously end up sounding like that, too. For example, if one of my friends used many quotation marks and happy faces, I noticed I would end up using them, too. However, after unplugging all electronics, which I ended up not using any of them during Acts4Youth, I noticed differences. Even though I was not supposed to have my phone or any electronics during this program, I did not even want to because I knew I would be able to interact with the kids more if I did not have them. I appreciated the time so since I got to help them, and not having these electronics made me focus a lot more on like the time I had as well as my day. I also feel like I communicated better with everyone since I simply listened and talked to people instead of having my phone in my hand.
I feel l did learn a lot from this experience of focusing on my communication during the day. I was able to pick up on things I would not have if I was not focusing on myself and others. I noticed more in class discussions, face-to-face with the kids at Acts4Youth, and even during texting. After going back to electronics after the couple of hours without them I just felt a sense of normal come back, which is how to describe the current world because so many people are attached to technology. However, this is just another way of communication, and after focusing on all forms of it throughout the day I learned about how I communicate as well as how others do.