Lately, I have been feeling the conviction of practicing an economy of words.
We live in a world of such great noise, both audible and visual. If we’re not careful, we get totally swept under by the sheer amount of information and “sound” coming at us. It’s a wonder to sit and watch your Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram feeds: a flood of nonstop updates and moments. There is great joy in seeing the world unfold around us, but there is also an inherent danger of the important things getting lost in the noise. This includes the noise in our own conversations.
A few months ago, I was talking with my wife about having kids, as we had been praying and thinking through this decision. It’s a complex subject, with many different associated feelings, and one that can be riddled with fears and anxieties. Expressing those can be difficult! As we were talking, I realized suddenly I had been talking for five minutes and had barely begun to adequately state what I meant to get across. My explanation was filled with filler words: “um”, “like”, “in that sense of”, “you know what I mean?”. It was like speaking in code: take every tenth word and compile a coherent thought. Throw away the others.