Surely you know someone that's a "like" overuser and inserts it into places where it would be fine if it was, like, not there.  You know?

I read something today that said people who are constantly inserting the words and phrases "like," "you know," and "I mean," are not ditzy and immature if that crossed your mind.  In fact, they may be more thoughtful than everybody else.

I had a friend once who would constantly say as the conversation was dying down, "I don't know, you know?"  Actually, she had the amazing overall ability to plop in a record number of "you knows" in any sentence.  I swear she could pack ten of those things into an eight word sentence.  It drive me insane!  But perhaps she was onto something.

The research says, those who speak by packing their sentences with the filler words are being conscientious.  The Journal of Language and Social Psychology says those who do it are more thoughtful than most and the filler words are actually "discourse markers" that "imply their desire to share or rephrase opinions to recipients."  In research talk, that means they're really paying attention and are hoping that everyone else is paying attention to the conversation too, and words like "like" help guide us along or seek consensus.

Now that I think about it, my you-know-using friend had a huge heart and was very thoughtful and conscientious.  And mature and had it all together.

We all use filler words to get from one thought to the next sometimes, and I know I do it too.  But I've noticed when I text or email the fillers disappear, because really, who has that kind if time to add extra typing?

Maybe when we talk, we should use the text philosophy?  LOL and sideways wink.

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