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The blank stare
Episode 2156th February 2023 • Irresistible Communication • Dr. Michael Gerharz
00:00:00 00:02:01

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Why the blank stare of your conversation partner is a powerful tool to arrive at clearer communication.

Transcripts

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One of the things we lack as speakers on a large stage is the blank stare

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of our audience, even more so when the large stage is virtual, so

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that you're looking into a camera.

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In a one-on-one conversation or in a meeting, the blank stare

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informs us about our blind spots.

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If we're being fuzzy, or if our words feel too abstract, we

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will usually see it immediately reflected on other people's faces.

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Which in turn will lead us to look for different, clearer

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ways of saying the same thing.

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So, the blank stare helps us to figure out what's clear to us, but

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makes no sense for our audience.

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And this kind of information is missing on a stage.

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And we can't reliably find that out while practicing alone, because we're

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all affected by the curse of knowledge.

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When everything is clear to us, it's hard to see what still

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remains unclear to others.

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We need other people's help to figure that out.

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Alone, in our office, we lack these blank stares, the kind of stares

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that make us look for simpler ways of explaining our idea.

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Practicing in front of a small live audience helps, as do private

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conversations with friends.

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Use these as a testing environment for the clarity of your communication.

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Sadly though, many speakers tend to avoid these situations because

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a blank stare embarrasses them.

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I think that that's a mistake.

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The blank stare is our friend.

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It allows us to fix our blind spots.

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So, look for and embrace blank stares.

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