Speaking Loudly: Does This Habit Indicate Confidence?

Posted: February 13, 2015

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Speaking loudly is nothing less than being impolite. Do you agree? Read on to find out why it has nothing to do with confidence.

“My shower broke, but I know how to fix it! I am sitting at a car dealership and getting my car fixed. Oh! wait, do you want to know how I know to fix my shower? I watched a dozen youtube videos while my car is getting repaired. Hey, I want to speak to you about XYZ problem of mine, are you available today afternoon? Let’s go to the new Starbucks that opened in that XY building, at this & this road! Ok, Sweetie, thanks so much sunshine, I am so glad you can help me fix my problem. Awww…don’t worry about the shower, I will fix it. Ok, Honey, see you at Starbucks, at 5pm at XY street. Love you, B-Bye!”

Readers, this is not a piece of fiction. This is real but it wasn’t my shower that broke and it wasn’t me who called my friend ‘Sunshine’! I heard (please note, not overheard), this conversation as I too sat waiting for my car to be serviced. There was this lady who called her friend and yes, she was this loud; way too loud a conversation to hold in public. I looked at her, and I knew what I was doing next! Yes, I am writing this post, and asking why?

Why! Why don’t people understand? Why don’t people have ‘common’ sense as to how to talk in a public place? Why do they think it is cool to talk loudly and openly when a dozen others can listen to their talk? Why don’t such people understand that other people are bothered by their loud information they have no business with!

Common myths around speaking loudly in public

Some of the myths about speaking loudly include:

  • It shows a confident personality: People who speak loudly assume that if they are able to carry this feat off, they are super confident. They are extroverts, carefree, unafraid, have a public personality and are dauntless.
  • People don’t care about the volume: Such people are unaware or don’t care about the fact that the people around them get affected by the ‘noise’ they are making. Volume matters. Period!
  • Just my personality: This is a ridiculous as well as annoying excuse for speaking loudly in public. No matter how extroverted your personality is, keep it to a low profile when the display is not needed.

Real facts about people who speak loudly in public

  • Anxiety: People who speak loudly can be anxious people. They may have anxiety when speaking in public and their defense is speaking loud (often unknowingly)
  • Family culture: Many cultures and families have loud mouth habits. This is just a natural part of their lives which isn’t noticed. Hence, no offense is offered while speaking loudly in public too.
  • Control-freaks: Many people speak loud especially in public places, talking over phones or the person next to them, in order to exercise control. Often, to show authority, people become loud talkers, and this becomes a habit, if done on a regular basis.
  • Just plain ‘impolite’: This is the most common reason! Most of all, such people who are just plain impolite, and have no concern about their surroundings.

From loud speaking to speaking softly

The first step towards not speaking loudly in public is to be aware that you tend to do so. Know for yourself that you might be loud even when you whisper. These are measures, which if sincerely followed, can help you speak softly:

  • Find out ‘how loud’: Try to listen to yourself speak. Ask a friend or a person you can open up with, to record you when you are unaware. Listen to the recording and find out how loud you speak, and what others felt about it.
  • Make a ‘quiet day’ plan: Starting with a single day, try to reduce the volume when you speak. Remember, be quiet before you open your mouth.
  • Make a ‘talk less day’ plan: Often when we have a lot to share, we speak fast and loud. How about a day when we speak less!
  • Take progress reports: Share your plans with friends/family and ask for a regular report card. It is important to know what measure works or excels for you. Any measure you take is not just once, it has to be repeated at regular intervals. If still nothing, get your ears checked. Sometimes audio-sensory problems make us speak louder than we think.

Before you head on to evaluate yourself or others, whether you or they tend to speak loudly in public or not, enjoy this phone call crashing video! Think about it every time you are in public, on phone or talking face-to-face!

Lady speaking loudly image via Shutterstock

Shaifali Gupta is the founder of Media Meridian, a Social Media & Content Marketing firm. Starting

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  1. I belong to loud voice group too and I found this article a little patronising and generalising too, mostly because some people do make an effort to be soft in their tone at times …. loud, heavy voice is truly something one is born with. Well you are lucky I should say?
    I stay in a country where people don’t understand my language but I still try my best not to be overheard (and gradually my tone does get loud unconsciously) and when in India I always avoid personal discussions in public. I don’t think just because I’m loud I should live a regretful life. And if someone tells me to heal my loud voice and make it soft …. Sorry that ain’t gonna happen .. not in this life.

  2. I also found this post a bit opinionated. First of all, it is not habit as you have generalized. I know some people in my workplace who are naturally loud and can’t help it. It doesn’t mean they are trying to brag about their work and it certainly ain’t about being an extrovert/introvert……….Why should you change yourself to try to fit in or do something which might be ‘socially acceptable’ ……. Doesn’t being non-judgmental about anyone is one of the concept emphasized on this website?……..How can just being yourself(as you mentioned “Just my personality’) be an excuse in the first place and how does it really matter if others find it annoying or not?

  3. People who speak loud in public, especially in a professional arena, lack consideration towards their colleagues. Loud noise disrupts clear /critical thinking. These types of people are rude, impolite and not cooperative for the common good.

    • I agree with Mayanka because I have to ‘endure’ a loud mouth everyday in the office and this particular loud mouth is the Human Resource executive. And I would thought as an HR she would have some common decency to lower her voice while in working.

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