Social Question

6rant6's avatar

Are you more likely to reflect on conversations past, or conversations yet to come?

Asked by 6rant6 (13619 points ) February 21st, 2012

This question came about as a result of reflecting on this answer.

I recognize that I spend a lot of time imagining conversations that I might have in the future – some of them likely, and some of them extremely remote. I tweak how I would put things and how I would convince the other person of my ideas. I would say that I spend more effort on this than I would prefer.

I know there are also people who spend a lot of time reviewing conversations that they have had recently, sometimes regretting how the conversations went, and thinking about what else they might have said. A couple of people have said to me that they regret the amount of time they spend doing this.

Which are you, a person who spends time reviewing, or previewing? How do you feel about it? Are you okay with the amount of energy you spend doing it? What do you think it says about you?

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10 Answers

anartist's avatar

I dwell too much on the past.
Besides, how could I think of a conversation that hasn’t happened yet?

Blackberry's avatar

I try to focus on things to come. One thing I think about is what I will say in various situations, like someone asking my opinion on something political or religious. I try to think of the best possible answer. Something succinct yet full of wisdom that’s also open to further questioning (because they may have questions).

downtide's avatar

I spend far more time dwelling on conversations yet to come, but they rarely pan out the way I imagine they would.

Coloma's avatar

Occasionally past conversations when they have been really good, enlightening, connecting with friends/family, but otherwise no. I’m a very much live in the now person. I never think about the past and rarely the future, since it doesn’t exist except in thought only. ;-)

marinelife's avatar

Neither. regret is a wasted emotion. I focus on the present.

ddude1116's avatar

A little of both. I run through conversations I’ve had in the past, and things I’ve said, but I also think of things to say in future situations. Usually, I just end up writing them down for reference in my various, and often feeble, attempts at literature. They usually never amount to much more, because it is either wholly trivial, or I dwell on it too long and the subject becomes irrelevant.

linguaphile's avatar

Depends on what’s going on in my life, it goes both ways. I do a lot of reviewing, of both good and bad conversations and a lot of previewing. The previewing helps me work through my sie of problems and conflicts, but sometimes if I don’t have someone else to bounce the thoughts off of, my mind can build on itself and become a runaway train. For that reason, I can’t preview too much.

MollyMcGuire's avatar

Well, you can only reflect on something that already exists. You can imagine future things. I do both, much the same as I would imagine most of us do.

smilingheart1's avatar

I think you have a gift of debate and conversational influence in you that is meant to be exercised and help others with aspects of their life or perhaps the broader scope of living.

Leanne1986's avatar

I’m always imagining conversations yet to come and how I’d like them to turn out. I do reflect on past conversations but I probable think about the ones to come more.

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