I ask this question largely because I have already reached my own conclusion.
I've been thinking about this a lot lately. When I was really little, I was painfully shy. I didn't even smile in public, actually. Even if I wanted to smile - if I could feel it happening - I would bite the inside of my cheek to keep my lips from spreading. As I got a little bit older and continued through high school, I continued to repress most of my thoughts and feelings. I think there was just too much going on inside to even want to make sense of it outside.
In undergrad I found my footing. I made new friends for the first time since kindergarten. It took me four years, but I realized that I could make friends on my own and perhaps some people (some people) did actually enjoy my company. Becoming increasingly vocal, I joined the conversation.
Now in grad school, more is demanded of me than ever before. The academic bit is something, but the social/personal aspects are really having an effect on my presentation. Teaching and organizing and generally being an adult-type-person means that I am constantly talking. My throat gets dry much more often than I care to admit. Now it feels more like I unnecessarily dominate the conversation. And, by this I mean all conversations. Except in class. Well...some classes.
So, today while this conclusion lolled around in my head, as it has for the past few weeks, I came upon something interesting. While looking at the grade rubric for one of my grad courses this semester, I found that the rubric stipulates than an A student "listens listens listens and responds thoughtfully to class discussion."
I get it. Loud and clear.
I've been looking for a project recently, and I think I've now found it.
I'm going to listen three times (italicized) more than I respond. Because, honestly, I have demonstrated my ability to throw myself into the outspoken, chatty place. Now I need to sit back and moderate the voice I've found.
This can only mean good things.