De-Can’t The I Can’t, Part I of III

De-Can’t The I Can’t, Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
November/December 2010

Part I: This November/December column was prompted after listening to an experienced court reporter express their “current mindset” during private coaching and tutoring.

The court reporter, with vast experience, said, “I can’t do that. There can’t be no opportunities.”

I was unclear if this was a comical statement or personal observation.

When the sentence was defined, at my request, the court reporter stated, “That’s really my opinion. But I really believe I can’t!”

My reply was a simple, “Hmm. How’s that?”

This professional then listed a bucket of reasons and detailed explanations. Sentence after sentence began “I can’t …”

Due to “precise listening” in our court reporting field, we know there are high-frequency words and phrases.

We know that all court reporting students are taught the phrase “I can’t” in a brief form.

As the holidays approach, I invite you to focus on the number of times you (I will include myself here) use the “I can’t” phrase.

What does this have to do with our work, our path?

The “I can’t” phrase is used with technology (yes, we are experiencing rapid changes). And we incorporate “I can’t” into our work, schooling, and personal life.

Why does this phrase matter now? My professional and personal opinion is that when we focus on the words we frequently verbalize, we discover roadmaps into our world. A roadmap into our world will often define our goals, too.

I am not suggesting that we avoid the words “I can’t.”

I am simplifying a possibility wherein we open a new focus into our verbal programming.

I am suggesting an opportunity to retune the wording.

Within my world, there have been moments when individuals ask “What do you do?”

I have been known to answer, “I have a degree in listening.” (This question is not asked by court reporters.)

Individuals who listened to my answer often finish the sentence for me with their words, and their opinions, while I listen.

Today, a gentleman phoned my office.

He defined his position as “IT” and said, “I need to ask you questions about All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc. I’ve researched you on the net. I have a two-page list here.”

Part I of III is posted November 14, 2010, on Monette’s Musings at and

Part II of III is posted December 2, 2010, on Monette’s Musings at and

Part III of III is posted December 15, 2010, on Monette’s Musings at and

—-Monette, named the Court Reporting Whisperer by students, may be reached:

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Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal, CART Captioner, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

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About Monette Benoit:    As a 30+ year court reporter, CART captioner, author of NCRA and State test-prep material, instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and 225-homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands challenges many adults face in our industry.

In 1993, she began to CART caption to a large screen for a Deaf mass, San Antonio, Texas.  Wonderful opportunities then presented from Big D, Little D, Oral Deaf, HOH consumers -each with special moments.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART captioners, students, instructors. She has helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is an informative, motivational, and funny blog for busy professionals and students who seek to create their success and who seek to enjoy this special path.

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