I can usually tolerate background noises and I handle multiple tasks no problem, but this particular coworker of mine is really starting to get on my nerves! She seems to have a need to talk incessantly and she is always striking up conversations or when that fails, goes on the phone. Not only does she dials on the speaker phone - when she does get through she talks as if there is no one else is in the office.
I didn't want to say anything because nobody else in the office seem to be bothered by the constant dial tone and yapping in another language, and I felt bad about my growing resentment towards her voice. A confrontation is that last thing I want, and I really don't want to hurt anyone's feelings. I tried to rationalize for her: maybe she doesn't have anyone to talk to at home and maybe she just doesn't realize how loud she gets, and maybe talking is her way of dealing with stress. It's not working.
I've resorted to my iPod Shuffle to keep my sanity in the office these days, but then it blocks out not just the noises - I missed out on other conversations as well, including remarks and instructions from my boss. I wonder if there are more technologically-advanced headphones that allows for selective filtering. And even when I have my headphones on, she would come to stand close enough that I feel her presence and am forced to take off my headphones for her conversations - most of the time about her children. Meanwhile, I tried to look up "how to stop a coworker from constantly dialing on the speaker phone" on google to no avail, but I did find many people suffering from the same obstructive harassment in their workplace. Knowing that I am not alone makes my feel slightly better - but the noise is still there and I can't have my headphones on all the time! What to do??