Lavon Hayes loves your outfit!
The Child and I recently started watching Heart of Dixie.
The 10 year old adores the television show.
The Mama finds it a Poor Woman’s Gilmore Girls (down to Blue Bell town square which looks remarkably like Star’s Hollow), but not without some redeeming qualities.
One being sexy Wade Kinsella who appears incapable of wearing shirts and Mama likes it that way. But Mama digresses.
High up on Mama’s (finger quote) redeeming quality (unF.Q.) list is Lavon Hayes, Mayor of the show’s fictional town.
Lavon is charismatic, Lavon has many
tattoos layers. Lavon consistently refers to Lavon in the third person.
As in illeism:
When Mama first heard the stylistic tool used in the show’s dialogue (aforementioned cocktail reference) she laughed out loud.
This is a rip-off of Jimmy likes Elaine! she said to the Child who knew neither Jimmy nor Elaine.
You know who Flavor Flav is, right?? she continued. He does this third person stuff, too! It’s ridiculous.
And yet, as happens with trashy TV in Mama’s house, Mama still was drawn to the show.
Lavon Hayes did NOT see that coming.
I tell you what, Mama joked to the Child one night mid-episode. I’ll give you $10 if, for an entire day, you do what Lavon does and refer to yourself as (insert child’s first and last name here).
No way, the Child responded. And besides, I like George Tucker.
Later that night, when Mama was alone with her thoughts, she concluded she should give the idea a try.
Starting a new writing gig?
Carla Birnberg is an amazing writer!
Filling out an application to present at a conference?
Carla Birnberg is a fabulous orator!
Heading down an unfamiliar path toward things which could fill her with fear?
Carla Birnberg is brazen! Carla Birnberg has got this!
While it sounded silly at times, even as mental self-talk, by day’s end Carla Birnberg
converted to illeism Lavon Hayes’d herself and discovered confidence she’d forgotten she had.
Illeism/Lavon Hayes’ing is empowering for 3 distinct reasons.
#1. Third person feels bold.
Speaking of oneself in the third person is so quirky and so odd it sliiides right into feeling confident and unstoppable. Even when used as a line of internal chatter/positive self-talk it made Carla Birnberg feel brazen. It reminded Carla Birnberg she wasn’t asking permission–Carla Birnberg was taking what she’s entitled to and kicking ass along the way.
#2. Third person gave me perspective.
Carla Birnberg rocks with other people’s problems. Carla Birnberg is fantastic at reminding others they matter. We’ve all experienced feeling overwhelmed by a challenge which, if presented to us by a friend, would have an easy solution. Illeism offered Carla Birnberg distance and provided perspective. This new vantage point to her life facilitated Carla Birnberg giving herself fantastic advice. Carla Birnberg has never struggled with negative self-talk yet this still felt like positive-speak on steroids.
#3. Third person allowed me to disconnect.
While Lavon Hayes’ing herself Carla Birnberg felt a movie character. Carla Birnberg didn’t disconnect in a negative, on the outside looking in way, but in a manner which provided clarity. Instead of panicking (or allowing discouragement to reign) illeism allowed Carla Birnberg to pause and ask herself: What *would* the best version of Carla Birnberg do in this situation?!
Here’s where I’m supposed to add This is hyperbolic. I never really tried The Illeism Experiment. I was making a point.
I can’t say that because I actually did it.
I felt like Elmo for much of the 24 hour cycle, but that furry monster might be on to something…
- Have you heard of illeism? Would you try it as a self-talk pattern if it boosted your confidence?
- Have you watched Heart of Dixie? Are you a George or a Wade fan?
Bea saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 4:31 am
I remember this show!!
I had no idea what Lavon did had a name.
It just cracked me up.
angela @ happy fit mama saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 4:36 am
I had no idea there was a term for talking in the third person! Every time I’ve heard someone doing that, I thought they were a little wacky. But I can see how it pumps you up and gives courage. And I’ve never heard of this show but am intrigued now…
Allie saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 4:41 am
Allie Burdick thinks this is amazing! Allie also loves how much tv mom and child get to watch together. Allie would also like a cocktail but should probably wait until noon-ish 🙂
messymimi saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 4:59 am
Asking myself what another person would do only works for me to a limited extent. This is something i’ve never tried, but i will, today.
Susie @ SuzLyfe saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 5:13 am
Susie Lemmer Loves Lavon Hayes and Wishes Lavon Hayes would Return.
I also feel like talking in the 3rd person engenders a need for capitalization. Which thus encourages a formality but also a sense of importance.
Susie Lemmer Likes This.
Lucie saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 5:43 am
I’ve never watched that show, and, I probably wouldn’t refer to myself in the third person for more than a few minutes…although it might be fun to annoy the family that way for a While!
Carla saysSeptember 20, 2016 at 5:13 am
AMEN. It would have annoyed mine entirely too—-hence the internal monologue with it. Although it still makes me LAUGH imagining the ten year old LAVON’ing all around austin 🙂
glenneth saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 6:04 am
i love this idea and see where it could help increase self-confidence! i am a HUGE hart of dixie fan and i vote BOTH! george and wade!
Coco saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 6:18 am
I couldn’t do it. Maybe if I were more brazen?
Deborah @ Confessions of a mother runner saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 7:08 am
Who knew talking in the 3rd person had a fun term? I may have to try this 🙂
Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 7:20 am
Every day Wendy prides herself on learning and retaining a new Spanish word. She speaks Spanish to her patients.
But it’s been a long time since Wendy’s learned a new English word. She’s going to start practicing illeism.
Carla saysSeptember 20, 2016 at 5:12 am
LOVE LOVE LOVE.
Shelley saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 7:22 am
There was a character (George Remus) on Boardwalk Empire who referred to himself in the 3rd person, so it’s become a joke around here to do that. But it’s fun! We do it to (half-) jokingly set up boundaries.
Shelley doesn’t like it when dishes are left in the sink. You don’t want to make Shelley upset, do you?
Sagan saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 8:33 am
Sagan gets a kick out of this 😉
Laura saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 8:42 am
Ha! I love the idea of trying it. I just recently discovered Hart of Dixie too – I like how clean and simple it is. I’m looking forward to being able to share shows with my daughter in a few years… that’s a great way to connect!
Haralee saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 8:53 am
I will have to try it. I think it is empowering and clarifying. Not that different than saying, Momma does not allow muddy shoes or paws in her office.
Michelle saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 9:25 am
OKAY! Michelle is totally trying this method. Even though it makes Michelle feel odd.
TriGirl saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 10:56 am
Elmo is based on how a 2 1/2 year old speaks 😉 I also happen to like him. But I do love what you got out of this. I’ve always seen 3rd person speak as completely obnoxious, but the empowerment and distancing is so interesting to me! I mean, to Julie Erdmann. Julie Erdmann likes Carla Birnberg’s writing and feels inspired to kick some ass and take some names of her own today. Also, Julie Erdmann learned a new word today and thanks Carla Birnberg for that.
…also? Julie Erdmann feels kind of strange now for talking about herself in the third person.
Carla saysSeptember 20, 2016 at 5:12 am
I found that so interesting about Elmo too when I read it! Apparently I dont recall when mine was 2.5? I guess she did talk like the furry red?
AdjustedReality saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 1:54 pm
Ah… this feels like writing a bio or something on a resume, where you already skew towards being very self-positive. We could use more situations where we can brag about ourselves and not feel like jerks. I like it! I think I’m going to spend some time Lavon Hayes-ing myself this week. 🙂
Stephanie Weaver, MPH, CWHC saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 2:27 pm
Loved the show but sorta hated myself for loving it. It was so bizarre… a version of the South without racism… happy and goofy and not really about anything but also in some ways, setting an example of what the South (and all of us) could be if color didn’t exist. But it was also so dumb too! I think it probably was shot on the same set as Stars Hollow. Fun post, as always. I loved Lavon and Wade too.
Carla saysSeptember 20, 2016 at 5:11 am
OH YES YES YES TO THE RACISM FACET. Ive had so many talks with friends about that piece too. I also found it interesting so few of them had pondered it. I couldnt decide if I just have friends who live that way so they didnt see the bizzarro bubble OR if it was willing suspension of disbelief.
Jody - Fit at 58 saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 5:29 pm
I AM CLUELESS ON THE SHOW & ALL – TYPICAL ME!
Oops on caps! 🙂
I am not sure what is going to work for me right now. Trying to figure it out. xoxoxo
Farrah saysSeptember 19, 2016 at 9:10 pm
hahaha, I love Hart of Dixie! I’m super behind on it but it’s a super cute show! I like how Lavon Hayes refers to himself in the first person too, hehehe. I didn’t know there was a word for referring to yourself in the third person, but it makes sense! I don’t do it often but I feel like that’d spice up my pep talks to myself! 😛
Carla saysSeptember 20, 2016 at 5:10 am
It really does….and I felt compelled to use it yesterday for my internal monologue and it also made me GIGGLE 🙂 win.win.