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Value Creation Blog

Do You Think Out Loud?

Posted by Josh Patrick

think out loud resized 600I do.  I find that thinking out loud is a great way to see if my ideas make any sense.  When ideas are just floating around my head, they always seem to make sense.  Once I actually say them out loud sometimes they do and more often than not they don’t. 

Speaking about an out loud is a good way to test whether the idea is a good one.  You might not feel comfortable about thinking out loud.  That sounds about right to me.  At the same time, I think it’s worthwhile for you to give it a try.  Here’s why.

Things just sound different when they come out of your mouth.

I don’t know why it’s true, but it is.  When I say something out loud it is completely different than when I just think to myself. 

You’re activating a different part of your brain when you talk.  For me, that part is more critical than the one that I use just when I’m thinking about things.

Speaking out loud demands that you are more specific about what you’re saying.  When you talk to yourself it’s easy to do so in incomplete thoughts.  Using your voice will automatically demand that you get more specific. 

Thinking out loud allows you the ability to self-edit.

I know that when I do a public talk I always rehearse my talk before I actually give it.  I mostly do this so I don’t sound like a fool once I get in front of others.  Talking out loud gives me a chance to test my ideas and see if they make sense once they’re spoken.

If you want to take this to another step, you can record yourself and your ideas.  When you listen to them you’re likely going to want to make changes before taking action.  Talking out loud is part of a refining process your brain uses to make your ideas more useable.

Thinking out loud allows you to test your premises.

When you talk out loud you get to test your thoughts to see if they make sense.  If they don’t, and it is likely they won’t, you can modify what you’re thinking about. 

The problem with talking out loud is that you might feel a little silly doing it.  We’ve been taught that talking to ourselves is only something crazy people do.  If you can get over that feeling, you’ll get great value from testing your ideas as spoken words.

Thinking out loud gets others involved.

It will if you actually talk to someone else.  I find that I often test my ideas with other people.  Those who have spent any time with me learn very quickly that I tend to just spill ideas out at a rapid rate.  If they sound silly, I’ll just say so and move on.

When I talk about my ideas with someone else, I can tell from their reaction whether I’m on to something.  Lots of times my ideas have limited use.  But then, there are those that are real gems.  Talking them out with others allows me to figure out which ones are the keepers.

What about you, are you willing to give it a try?  Are you willing to talk out loud about what’s going on in your life and the plans you have for yourself?  If you are, you’ll see there’s great value in doing so.

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Topics: business coaching, communication, value

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