October 22, 2012
On Saturday October 20th, I observed how I communicate with others for the second iExamen. I found it very difficult to say what was only kind, useful, and true. This posed an obstacle for me because meeting all of those three conditions was not typical of my every day communication. I am a very talkative and outgoing person, so this was extremely hard. From the time I woke up to the time I went to bed, I found that I had a different outlook on this iExamen. When this assignment was first given to the class, I did not know how I was going to complete it; I thought it to be impossible. After I started indulging myself in this self-observation I found it very difficult, but rewarding.
I woke up on Saturday at 11am, and sat in bed thinking what I was going to say to my roommate when I woke up. “Kind, useful, and true, kind, useful, and true,” swam around my head as I repeated this mantra for twenty minutes before I eventually spoke. I first thought about saying how loud she was snoring that night and how I had a bad night’s sleep, but I realized that it was indeed not kind or useful, although it was true. As my roommate and I were getting ready to go to the mall, she observed that I was oddly quiet. “Are you sick?” she asked me, “No! I can only say things that are kind, useful, and true today…” “Okay….you do that…” she replied. I could hear the doubt in her voice. She was most likely thinking that I could not do this due to the extreme amount of sarcasm that I used throughout the day. As the day went on, I realized that I found myself thinking about what to say, because I was worried that it would not meet that criteria of being “kind, useful, and true.” I noticed that my communication was way different than usual. I was deemed as the “shy one” for that day, although that is not usually my nickname. This taught me to observe how I usually communicate throughout the day. I realized that I should not have to think about saying what is kind, useful, and true. My communication should always meet those three criteria’s. I should be the outgoing one who uses less hurtful sarcasm and increases the kind, useful, and true comments.
In terms of social media, I realized that it was easier for me to communicate via these types than in person. I could meet all these criteria’s on my own time as I thought about what to post or e-mail. As I was thinking about what to type, I realized that most of my inputs in the social medias are already kind, useful, and true. This realization suggested that the way I speak in public is different from how I speak on social media sites, such as Twitter or Facebook. I should reflect the way of speaking on the Internet into my daily life and face-to-face conversations.
Although half of my friends thought that I lost my voice, I did realize that people were nicer to me as the day went on. This was most likely due to me using means of communication that were kind, useful, and true. What goes around did come back around. As I complimented someone or gave them advice that met that criteria, the next day that same person smiled at me or gave me a compliment. I observed that I must treat others the way I want to be treated.
Communicating along these lines have helped me. It helped me realize that the reasons that I was more shy throughout the day was because I was not used to talking in these terms. I have made it my goal to attempt to make it common for me and not think as much when I am attempting on using communication that is kind, useful, and true. What I have gained in self-awareness from this iExamen is tremendous. Speak to others the way I want to be spoken to is my new mantra. My new golden rule.