I’ve been in way too many lengthy meetings lately.  Ones that last for endless hours.  Ones where the meeting protocols call for “Being fully present”.  I find it odd that it is necessary to state that one’s attention should be at the meeting.  It’s as if everyone knows that the meetings are crammed with an over abundance of agenda items and if we write down the words “Be fully present” then the meeting attendees actually will be attentive.  

At a recent meeting I was being fully present by focusing my attention on the current buzz words being used by the participants.  It’s so interesting how the English language is a living thing that evolves with usage and how groups of friends, team members, co-workers create their own lingo.  Sometimes the words express in an abbreviated way a common feeling or a shared experience. Sometimes words are given the opposite slang meaning like “That’s soooo hot”.  It’s so hot that it’s cool.  Some folks seem to enjoy bringing into their vocabulary or presentation the buzz words of their audience participants as if to show that they fit into the group.  “OK ‘dudes and dudettes’ let’s begin this meeting”. Then there are those who appear to want to impress others by verbalizing the “intellectual” buzzwords.  Right now “going deeper” has gained popularity. “It isn’t enough that we analyze the situation, we have to ‘go deeper’ to…”. Another buzzword gaining immense usage is “robust”.  “It is important that students have ‘robust’ vocabulary”.  Or “The results of the survey are very ‘robust’ so…”.

 Sometimes I think it would further the communication process by just being more direct, by speaking more simply. “Can you hear me now?”