Let’s talk about how talking is essential in life today.
I am Turkish. I am culturally inclined to talk. We talk all the time. You can put two Turkish people who don’t know each other in the same room and they will find a lot of things to talk about. I can talk to a stranger for several hours like that. So, I don’t mean small talk here. It is talking just for the sake of communication. Talking without a purpose. Meeting for brunch and chatting randomly. It can also include expressing emotions without trying to achieve to solve the issue. It also is better in person. That kind of talking. Once, we were in an Uber car and the driver happened to be Turkish. He told me all his life story in our 20-30-minute ride, which surprised my friends. After all, he does not know me and I don’t know him. But this is not unusual in the Turkish culture.
When I moved to the US, I noticed people talk less. So, I started talking less, at least for my level of talking. Then, partly due to this, I started feeling worse. Not talking to people as much started isolating me and I was not used to isolation. This works for Americans, as far as I can see. But with my cultural background, it challenged me. Then, I decided to try to get back to talking. I did this by meeting different people so I would not bother a single person as much.
This got me thinking: Why do I need to talk? A few things came to mind, and I think they are all related. First, I realized that talking just for the sake of communication relieves me of my daily stress. That is the strategy I learnt to use against stress in my culture. Second, it keeps my connection with others going and I need this connection to feel inspired to write and to renew my purpose in life. Third, I notice that when I talk, people talk in response. In this way, they also relieve their stress. So, we start sharing more. All of these work to make me a better person. Not only do I become more easy-going when I talk (because I get rid of my stress), but I also connect with others better. Talking, I feel, makes me human.
This post has mostly been about me. But these are things that I have been thinking about, so I wanted to share with you. Are you a talkative person? If so, why do you think you like talking? If not, what other strategies do you use to relieve stress and connect with others? Let’s share.