It’s Thursday! The day I set aside to respond to one of fellow blogger “Mama Kat‘s” writing prompts. Today I chose: #3 “You have one wish…what do you wish for? I wish I could be a better listener. I get so much when I tune in to people and yet I am so on the go all week, I forget to discipline myself to do it. Listening is far superior to taking. Reading, in a similar way, is far superior to writing. I now this and yet I spend the majority of my time talking, as a teacher and also with my family/friends, and far less time listening and really accepting the input of other minds. Every once in awhile I challenge myself to do a “listening experiment.”
Most of us get hoodwinked into believing we must always be speaking, earning, racing, fighting to get ahead. As we buy the lie, we stop receiving knowledge, wisdom, encouragement, and other input from others.
I’ll be challenging myself in the upcoming set of days to focus on receiving input more than sending it out. I call it the listening experiment. So far, every time I have done it and blogged about it, I’ve been radically impacted for the better.
I don’t mind telling you that listening is the hardest thing I can challenge myself to do. I guess I’m afraid I’m wasting tie. Perhaps at my core I truly believe my thoughts are superior to other people. I hate the sound of that. A person like that ends up on an island with a Walkman and no one to talk to. I definitely don’t believe that and yet I act that way by not being a good listener. As I do the experiment, tv doesn’t count as “receiving” or listening, although it does has some value that way, you can’t interrupt it. Listening to my wife and kids does count. Reading others’ words in books and on a computer counts as well. I’m not sure why they are superior to tv, but they are. Active listening includes responses but rarely gives examples from its own life (a big pool of quicksand for me).
Active listening is an ongoing practice.
I think I’ve gotten better at listening but I still have many miles to go to be the type of listener I want to be. So that would be my wish, in response to this wonderful writing prompt. It was a nice reminder of what’s truly valuable to me and what I desire most out of life.