Listening to others

I am exhausted lately. I see it everywhere I look. People are so sure of their own thoughts, they wont even give another person the ability to speak. Or they think an action is incorrect, so they bully someone into changing their action. Or call themselves better or more mature than those who don't do what they believe is right. It's really starting to bother me, so I believe I need to look inward a little about this subject. And so, I'm trying.

Why is it that we are so sure of our truth that we wont even allow someone else to speak their opinion, information, or truth? Why do we think if we wont listen to someone else they will listen to us? Because we are knowledgeable? Because we have facts that back us up? Maybe sometimes with somethings that does come into play. But in this day and age, one persons facts aren't that far from their opinion.

I will admit, I have done this. There are certain subject where I am desperately learning to listen to others. Just Sunday afternoon, when I talked with my family about the sermon and our thoughts about what was said, I had to take a step or two back. I realized I was putting out what I thought as cement, and not letting them even consider speaking their thoughts. How is that a discussion? How does learning take place then? Are we too above it all to think that we don't have something to learn ourselves?

Dogs, politics, mommy-ing, and how to grieve are all subjects I have seen people be obstinate about their opinions in the past week. I have watched as they bullied others to be quite, to change their actions, to feel better about their own choices, or to justify themselves. The thing is, I really don't want to believe that they know they are behaving this way. The question then is does it make a difference? Maybe, it's simply a wake up call for me to allow me to know that I behave this way.

I want to be someone who isn't so hung up on her own opinion that I'm not able to learn from another person. I want to have a beginner's mind by being curious, asking questions, and trying to understand. I want to truly hear what someone has to say, because I really want to learn to be a better person. I want to care more about the person than getting them to agree that I am right.

This doesn't mean that I agree with them just to make them feel good. But can I not hear them out, and then agree to disagree on a subject? Or can we not have different opinions, but that be okay? I know that's not easy depending on the subject, timing, and person. Each situation is individual and we can only do our best in each moment. Sometimes my best isn't that great. But I have to keep striving, or else why get up in the morning? So, I am trying to take my eyes off the other people who aren't listening, and look for the times I'm not listening... and change that.



Picture #1 Source: blog.crescendoh.com via Stacey on Pinterest
Picture #2 Source: google.com via Stacey on Pinterest

Comments

  1. I've had to change a lot in this regard, too. There are things that I've purposely decided to be less vocal about, and sometimes I wonder what people that I know think about that. My opinions and beliefs have, for the most part, not changed a lot, but I've decided to be less in-your-face about them... but I worry(not sure if that's the right word) that people, who I used to be "in line" with, have seen that less-vocal-ness and taken that to mean that I don't believe the same things anymore... But, it's not that... I've just chosen a different approach than I used before. I can't say whether that's right or wrong... I have my reasons... and for now, I stand by those reasons and feel good about them...

    Wow, that is really cryptic. LOL

    To sum up... Yes.

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    1. Good for you. We all have to be able to know what we believe, and when it comes time to defend ourselves we can do so with gentleness. Not everyone will agree, no matter what choice you make. When you are sure of where you stand what more can you ask for?

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