Echo

Getting Real and Going Deeper

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I've recently been thinking about how us as a culture communicate so often by way of superficial chatter and elaborate facades over deeper conversations and genuine concern. I decided to make this topic because I have friend who has been going through some really hard things as of late; and then I heard this song and decided it was time to say something about all this.

So often I see people avoiding deeper discussion for a variety of reasons. Sometimes people don't like conflict thus don't want to discuss anything controversial. Other times it seems that some are too concerned about what others think about them and are too worried about being judged to talk about something deep and personal which they need to discuss. Maybe people are just shy. I was talking with a friend the other day and asked how it was going, the first reply was good, but as we got talking more I learned that there was huge amounts of struggles going on, and lots of emotional and physical hurt. I think my point is that so much of modern conversations are superficial and sometimes meaningless, even when there are important and touchy subjects and exist, they're often avoided. I'm not saying this is necessarily true in your life- maybe you have multiple deep conversations daily, but at least in my life at school and online I find this to be the case all too often.

I want this topic to be open as a discussion, so here's a few discussion points/ questions. Do you think that modern society and expectations make it challenging to have deep meaningful conversations? Do you make a conscious or even subconscious effort to engage in or avoid deeper conversations? What type of topics do you consider superficial, and what topics do you consider real/ deep? Do you think that deeper and more meaningful and controversial topics should be discussed more often?

Just to be clear (in my opinion) deeper conversation can refer to any meaningful talk beyond to day-to-day superficial talk we all engage in. Personally I would consider much of media/ Hollywood, and lots of sports and some politics to be superficial; while I'd consider deeper talk related to personal needs or problems, or topics like worldview, religion, and a fair number of other controversial subjects. 

There's just too many deep needs and aches in this world for our talk to be so superficial.

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I think society has drilled me to think that no one really cares about what I have to say. So I've never really opened up to anyone, not even my family. 

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I have multiple deep conversations with people daily. I'm that kind of person that is a deep thinker so most of my conversations are deep conversations. You learn way more about a person when you have a deep conversation with them then you ever would've known before. (Based of what they tell you, facial expresssions, body language, etc.)

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On 11/18/2016 at 9:47 AM, Rob said:

I think society has drilled me to think that no one really cares about what I have to say. So I've never really opened up to anyone, not even my family. 

That's me. Before making the first reply to the topic, I thought like 100 times and after making it, I thought like 200 times if I should edit it.

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Do you think that modern society and expectations make it challenging to have deep meaningful conversations?

While I think it may be a factor, it's not that dominant. People in earlier societies were not any more into deep and meaningful conversations than the present one. 

Quote

Do you make a conscious or even subconscious effort to engage in or avoid deeper conversations?

Most of the time, no effort at all. There are special circumstances and exceptions though, which are quite rare.

You see, the small talks and superficial things are not entirely meaningless. While it is true that they don't provide us with any new information [Most people when asked 'how are you?' would say 'good' no matter what], it does serve a special purpose, that of social acknowledgment. They don't have any meaning in themselves, but serve the purpose of making people feel that they are not unacknowledged, that their presence is not meaningless.

Deep conversations often have deep thought and opinions and knowledge of the subject matter as a prerequisite, which not all people possess at all times.

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I've noticed myself a lot of people avoid deeper conversation as well. I'm the kind of person myself who likes to have deep conversations, and they are something I do daily. With some of my friends it's a point we make almost every day to discuss things going on personally. For me it's easy, as I'm a very open book type person. I'll answer any questions that are asked and I enjoy delving much deeper in to things, getting in to long conversations.

I'm no able to do this with everyone though. With some people I just can't seem to get things to go to a deeper level. Here are some of the reasons I've noticed:

1. Some people have been trained to avoid touchy subjects. I blame the social structure youth of today has for this. In schools you're encouraged to fit in with the crowd mold (Which is strange we've come to a point that "breaking the mold" is the new mold)  socialization between a lot of kids is kept to time between classes or quick texts (which if no one has notices is probably the worst form of communication we've invented the way it's used). In fact, relationships between youth today last for such a small amount of time they rarely get to the point things can  be deeper. It's a horrible system for proper socialization, rarely does anyone come out of it understanding how to have a proper deep relationship with a friend or anyone really. 

2. People are afraid of feel uncomfortable. All of these relate to #1 in reality. People today  are so emotionally sensitive (we're the most easily offended generation in the history of mankind) that they just try to avoid any sort of confrontation or opening up. This in turn ends up making them even more easily offended and hurt. It's like when you first start playing the guitar. Your fingers will get really sore and kind of raw at first from pressing on the strings, and it can hurt if you play enough. As you play more and more though, the skin thickens and you build up calluses which makes it so you don't hurt your fingers and can move them faster. You have to go through the pain to get good at it. It's the same with emotions, you have to open yourself up and allow the pain, the fear, and general uncomfortableness of going deeper and trying to stay calm to be able to do it well. People today don't really do that though, instead when they feel pain they want to hide deeper, not face it.  They avoid situations that would offend their feelings. This makes them weaker because they're not building up any tolerance and it gets really hard to build up after making yourself more and more sensitive. 

 

I'll add more when I have time, there's a lot to chew on there as is :P

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To avoid a deep conversation knowledgeably is to present information that is reflective of your inward self. This can be derived from a lack of self confidence, a lack of knowledge on a particular subject, or a lack of involvement or care. Personally, I will avoid going too deep into a subject that I do not efficiently understand in an effort not to make a complete fool of myself. After further contemplation and research I would be open to said discussion again. Obviously, it also depends on the participants of the conversation. I will have a much easier time going into a deep conversation with a friend I've had for three years than someone I met a week ago. Therefore, under that presupposition, it is completely and utterly dependent upon who the conversation participants would be.

If you are scared of these deeper conversations due to a fear of having an nonconforming opinion, thus being shunned by the public, then that is something that the individual needs to work out for himself. It takes someone with a serious disrespect for himself to silence his own intellectual liberty in an effort to play it cool with peers.

Deep Conversation is anything that takes an active involvement from both parties of a conversation, and ultimately results in the intellectual or social advancement of at least one party.

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All these comments talking about deep conversations and fear of having them because of how society has molded us into inward thinkers not touching on what needs to be or uncaring towards people but not actually being all that deep considering they're coming from people who can be and consider themselves deep (at least with others on DCC or otherwise). Not to say these comments don't have anything to add to this forum. I myself found this information and these comments quite valuable especially in this day and age. But now that it's been established why deep conversations aren't exactly encouraged openly, why not take time to talk about another topic or even a life experience? For instance how have you been able to have deep conversations with your closest friends? What is it about them that allows you to go deeper into conversation?

 As an example: I (I don't mean to center this on me I just don't have any other examples) have moved around a lot since the time I was really little (3-4). I made friends fairly easily but I never really got to truly know them that well and discuss topics deeply with them because of moving around so much be it because we couldn't afford it or because my parents were seperating again. Eventually we would settle down for 5 or 6 months, long enough that I could talk to and get to really know kids my age. As soon as that happened we would move. Because of this process I would start closing myself off to the world and wander around looking for something to fill the gap of "friends" and never settling on anything (I never really found one main thing interesting enough or affordable enough to pursue). Eventually about 3 years ago we settled down here in Arizona. I've still moved around in state but I've better connected with some friends and we keep in contact but I still don't really get to have deep conversations with them. I crave that mental stimulation which I hope to have one day with people I can call my friends.

 Sorry about it being so long and not all that deep (what a hypocrite am I right?) but hopefully this will spark something to keep this going in a good direction.

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14 hours ago, MidoriJordan said:

But now that it's been established why deep conversations aren't exactly encouraged openly, why not take time to talk about another topic or even a life experience? For instance how have you been able to have deep conversations with your closest friends? What is it about them that allows you to go deeper into conversation?

One of the things I've noticed is to go deeper with people they have to be 100% focused on the conversation you're having. It's really hard to talk to someone when they're also looking at their phone are having their mind wander about. They have to get to the point they're genuinely invested in the conversation. Of course then you  wonder, how do you get to this point? There's a few walls I feel you have to break down first. One of the ways I find it easiest to start really relating with someone is through humor, laughing with people builds a connection with them that makes situations less awkward and makes you generally feel more comfortable around them. Just generally building  propinquity is also important, the longer you're around someone and paying attention the more comfortable you feel around them and the more you can open up.

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Ok, so I went back and was reading through this post and I have something to add. I'm currently enrolled in a Theory of Speech class right now and this is kind of a topic we talk about in the class. We've discussed that one of the ways to contribute to a conversation to make it deeper and more meaningful is through experience sharing and story telling.

So for this class each week, we have a discussion topic. On this discussion topic, we have to go in and write about a 500 word story of something that we've experienced relating to what we are studying in the text. We also have to include 3-5 pictures to go along with it to give others a better picture of what we are talking about because this IS an all online class. 

Through this, I have found that I am so much more willing to want to write more, I am more willing to want to read other peoples replies, and comment under them more, because the replies are so much more meaningful to me since they're someone else's personal experiences. 

I believe if people are more open to sharing their own experiences and stories, more meaningful and deep conversations will occur between people. People often have these walls up around them due to previous hurt, trauma, etc. But if people want meaningful discussions and talks, they must break these walls down and be vulnerable, even if there is a risk they may end up being hurt. 

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