***Disclaimer: I am a speaker at heart! These notes are either transcripts of the podcast or notes I made in preparation. For The Stress Club study, it will mostly be bullets with page numbers. Since you have the option to get the book free (details in episode), you'll be able to follow! Please forgive the inevitable grammar errors 😘
Welcome to the Stress club Session 3: Stress Club Study for Women - My Soul Sister! Click here or pic to listen.
So far we have talked about frogs in pots, how we are conditioned that stress it’s just part of life today. In chapter 2 we looked at our stories and the formula for happiness and the influences on how we react to life events. Then in Chapter 3, I gave you an overview of how I studied stress and how it is different from other studies.
Today I am sharing with you probably my favorite chapter, my favorite topic, of this entire book for women: our language!
It’s probably never been in the front of your radar to study the history of women’s language, so let me help you with that today! I’ll give credit to a few women who really paved the way and talk about our language in three different views: Language as Deficient, Language as Different, and Language as Rapport.
Language as Deficiency:
I’m guessing this word makes your feathers a little bit ruffled. I mean come on! How dare someone say my language is deficient! Prior to the 1970s and the women who studied our language, women were studied by researchers like Freud. I’m not saying he’s the one that came up with this deficiency model of language, but you can guess in a male-dominated research situation, women were definitely seen as weak. So, this deficiency model focused on two aspects of our language: the words we use and how we use them.
We use words like precious, adorable, sweet. We might use colorful words like fuchsia, princess neckline, you get it! Now you may not be a woman who speaks this way so I’m not calling it a norm, but it is a pattern. If men speak this way they could be labeled as effeminate and possibly weak because men are expected to use powerful words, even curse words, for example damn my client canceled.
This puts women in a damned if you do, damned if you don’t situation. If a girl grows up using proper female language, then you would think she would be honored for that. Not so. If a woman uses this weaker language she is labeled as weak and possibly a doormat. But if she uses stronger, dominant language, she might be seen as the B word right! And ladies this can be very painful because you might be choosing between being less than a woman or less than a person!
Now, how we use words, including our voices. This involves tagging and intonation.
Excerpt p. 46.
Tagging is adding on a few extra words to a statement, maybe because you’re not feeling very confident.
Intonation, for our purposes, is the rising voice at the end to sound like a question, again the assumption being not confident.
What does this have to do with stress? Oftentimes our language is still seen as deficient and weak. We’re still judged, and that can cause what we call “stress” at home and at work in not speaking up or speaking up too much. We need to look at it differently. Maybe these tags/intonations/softer words are to keep the conversation going.
Language as Different
Deborah Tannen describes this approach. Men and women are simply subcultures and have language differences, differences in the “goal” – Rapport vs Report. How many times in a conversation back and forth – I know me too! Well I! It’s not necessarily one-upping, it’s to bond.
Excerpt p. 49 girls/boys
Finally, Language as Rapport
We talked about what language DOES, and one thing it does is we DO our gender. We DO friendship.
Jennifer Coates Women Talk p. 52
Bottom Line: our language tends to be relational p. 53
The title is My Soul Sister, let me read the exchange that demonstrates all of this: p. 50-51
And sadly, as always, that’s our time for today. I am praying every day for our country, our leaders, everyone’s roles, and people affected. I hope you’ll join me in doing that AND in staying mentally and emotionally healthy.
As always, Please pass the show link along to a friend or two and subscribe, download, and review wherever you are listening. And head over to tamiwest.com to get info if you’d like me to speak at your next event and also you’ll find the promised links and info. And I’d love for you to follow me on Facebook and all those other crazy social media outlets; links are in the show notes. If you’re a woman and you haven’t joined my private FB group The Stress Club, please do that now! It’ll be your daily sources for exiting the life of stress! Link is in the show notes. If you missed the Stress Club free Kindle giveaway, send me a message in any format – email, social media, text – and I’d be happy to send you a PDF
Thank you so much for listening and growing our special community!
I pray that each day you remember to love, to serve, to feel worthy, to grow, to connect, to change, and to be the best person you can be for yourself AND for the other humans in your world!
And until next time, Consider Yourself Hugged 😘🤗