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Adam’s Tips for Being an Active Participant in Conversations

Adam’s Tips for Being an Active Participant in Conversations

Comments [1]

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Hey everyone, it's Adam, and I wanted to tell you what it's like for me to be around other people. When my brother and I are speaking and it's just the 2 of us, we can have a really good time, we can laugh, we can joke, maybe at his place or at my place or even just on the phone, and so that's a really comforting experience. It changes, however, when you're in a large group or when you're in some kind of group setting whether it's family, friends, or a bunch of people you don't know. For example, last Thanksgiving I actually had hosted some friends and family over at my house--my place--and throughout the course of the day I found myself struggling to kind of keep up with the conversation. There was a lot of people talking at once, a lot of different subjects going on, and it--the reality is I found myself disconnecting and kind of sitting there letting the conversation pass me by, not being proactive, not really listening to what was being said. And that's not really how I want to live. I'm sure that's not really how you want to live. So some of the things that I did to kind of counteract that, retrospectively of course, things that I came up with and I've implemented and had success now are things like being agile in the conversation. So when I do go out and I know I'm going to go somewhere where other people might be around or there might be large groups of people, I kind of just prepare myself mentally to be agile, kind of go with the flow and let the conversation happen and-- without any kind of preconceived notions or expectations for what the conversation might be. But one of the ways I come back after disconnecting from a conversation is to kind of ease myself back into it and kind of transition back into the conversation. For me personally, it's kind of like hitting the power switch and then having a delayed reaction to have the screen come on or to kind of come back in and, so I may turn the power on and then wait a few seconds or a few minutes while I listen to other people's conversation and kind of start to understand their trains of thought and essentially ease myself back into the conversation to where I'm ready to become part of it again because I don't enjoy--and I'm sure you don't enjoy--sitting out of the conversation or being disconnected, but sometimes we need a little bit of recoupment time to get our heads back straight. So that's about it, and I hope that will help you.

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One-on-one conversations are easy and fun, but for someone like Adam, who has a brain injury, being in a large group can be challenging.

Adam profile thumbnail

Hi, I’m Adam Anicich

I’m a former Army Sergeant, a Department of Veterans Affairs employee, a service-disabled vet, and someone with a brain injury. I’m here to share my story with you — along with some practical tips — and I hope that I can help you in your own journey of recovery.

Learn more about Adam >


Comments [1]

I have been listening to your tips and will be trying some of these. Thank you for sharing these. They are helpful and comforting.

Nov 1st, 2012 8:05pm


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