There is a saying by an ancient philosopher Diogenes, “we have two ears and one mouth perhaps because we are to listen twice as much as we speak.” In this technological age we live in there has never been a time when we are communicating more in history. The ability to express our emotions, feelings and thoughts to others has never been so easy with the aid of technology. In my opinion, we are communicating face to face less and less and certainly less effectively.
I have been a mentor program facilitator and curriculum writer in the past. It became very obvious that one of the best ways in which the connection between mentor and mentee was established was through an understanding “listening ear”.
Listening actually is a way of showing value and worth to the person who is talking. So many times in my life because I’ve been preoccupied or thinking about a task or something else, I have neglected the person I am talking with, not intentionally, but non-the-less, I haven’t been attentive to be able to recant what has been told to me. How about you can you relate to this realisation?
Listening is becoming a dying art form within our society. People hear one another, and we even say to one another, “I hear you!” Yet, are we truly listening? When we actually give a person the time and attention that they desire we are speaking in a non-verbal way and conveying that the person speaking has value.
James 1:19 says, “ let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger.”
This takes an intentional posture on our part, to be a person who wants to listen to others.
It is an action of humility and thinking about others more than ourselves. In a growing narcissistic world this belief and action is becoming harder to find. What would our communities look like if we slowed down and listened to one another more intently? To do so takes a change of belief. That belief is in fact that people are one of our greatest assets and treasures in life.
It is my intention to be a better listener! I know this will take more empathy and a genuine desire to want to place myself in the position to listen to others. I believe it is not too late for our community. There is some endearing, lovely characteristics of yester year that our great grandparents had in place. One of those traits of society back then was the ability to value people in the daily routine, rather than just the tasks of daily routine. I wonder, would we be a happier people if we listened to our fellow man more often?