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woman learning How To Handle Someone Who Talks Over You

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Wanting to feel like you add value to the spaces you’re in is a universal desire. And one of the top ways any of us feels valuable is by feeling heard. But the truth is, not everyone gets their chance to speak as much as others – literally. That’s because some people deal and work with someone who talks over them, cuts them off or doesn’t even create room for them to speak. You know who these folks are, and if you’re dealing with someone who talks over you, you just wish you could slap some duct tape over their mouths sometimes.

Dealing with people who talk over others and interrupt is a part of life for everyone, but more for some than others. One study published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology showed that the ideas of Black women in group discussions are misremembered and wrongly credited more than those of Black men, white men and white women. So, how do you deal with an incessant interrupter? We’ve got some ways you can make your voice heard around these (insufferable) individuals.


Get Ahead Of The Interruptions

If you are initiating a conversation with the interrupter, you can get ahead of the issue with a simple statement. Try something like, “Before I start, I just need to say I have to get this out clearly without interruptions. I can lose my train of thought if I’m interrupted. So please hold any comments or questions until I’m done.” For many interrupters, nobody puts these parameters around the communication for them. Doing so makes them hyper-aware of their urge to interrupt, and pre-labels that behavior as “problematic.”

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