One of the most useful and underused quality that we have and can fine tune to our benefit is listening. Most of the time we listen to reply or we don’t listen at all.
This raised the question for me: why do we do that? Why don’t we listen to understand? Why don’t we listen to learn? Why don’t we listen so that we can better approach things and avoid unnecessary conflict?
One of the reasons we don’t listen is because we have become very reactive. Instead of walking into a conversation with the goal of becoming more cultivated, we approach it with the purpose of being heard.
While I understand that we all want to have our voices heard, the message behind the voice matters more. We need to become more proactive about the message that we’re trying to convey to others (this also requires listening), not only to others, but more importantly to our own selves. How many times have you been in a conversation where you found yourself saying “this is not what I meant” or “I didn’t mean it that way”? I bet you that happened one too many times. That happened either because you weren’t listening to what they were saying or you didn’t listen to your own thoughts, your own intentions and walked in the conversation in a reactive way versus proactive way.
If you truly want to be heard, master the skill of listening first. Listen with no agenda. Listen so that you have a more cultivated and well rounded opinion. Listen so that you understand that your perspective isn’t the only one about a particular thing. Just listen.
One of the best things I’ve accomplished by mastering this skill was listening to my inner voice. The voice that is our true self, that comes from our deepest and most sincere place, the inner guidance that leads to the most extraordinary life. It has helped me avoid conflicts, know my outcomes, refine my intentions, do right by others regardless if that meant I needed to admit I was wrong. Listening to my inner voice has allowed me stay unchanged when faced with different circumstances, because the only thing we ever have control over is ourselves.
Have you listened in? What does your inner voice tell you? How can you fine tune it so that you can dive deep into the core essence of who you are? How will it serve you to litenten to others and understand them rather than judge them? Where could you be in 1 year or 5 years of you mastered this skill?
Just imagine how much it can serve you, in all aspects, to just become a better listener.