This one's for you, babe. I believe there is an art to listening. The unselfish act of allowing another person to speak freely and completely is a gift. Sometimes I have trouble giving that gift. I don’t think I’m a terrible listener, I just usually adopt a more continuous interaction in a conversation. Constant banter, if you will:-)
My amazing husband, on the other hand, is from the school of let a person finish their total thought before you utter a single sound. This has caused some tension in our home over the years. Especially as he tried to teach our children not to interrupt...while I have a tendency to do just that.
Matthew feels that you can’t possibly know what someone is going to say without letting them first finish their sentence. I sometimes disagree...I mean, when you’ve lived with people for decades, you might truly know what they’re about to say before they actually spit it out.
However, I know that’s not really the point.
I now realize that one of the most loving gifts you can give to someone is your complete attention.
Not your attention until you think of something super important to blurt out prematurely.
Your full attention. Nothing less.
So, I’m committed to changing my faulty listening ways.
I feel that I know Matthew extremely well. We’ve been married over 20 years. Our communication is open and honest. I often think I know what he’s going to say before he’s finished saying it...so I chime in with my (often congruent) thoughts prematurely.
I take my turn before it’s given and in doing so, I unintentionally shut him down.
And now that I’m paying more attention to this bad habit of mine, I’ve noticed that I’m sometimes way off base with what I thought he was going to say. I cut him off before he can finish his thought and my interjection takes the conversation in a different direction than the one he was heading.
It’s time to zip my lips and bite my tongue. At least until I find a new listening groove.
I want to be a better listener.
I don’t feel I quite as guilty of this with my friends and clients as I am with my immediate family. Though, if I am, please tell me!
With family, we’re so close that my mind tends to race ahead (clearly not staying present and in the Now:-) and want to jump in with my two cents.
Bad habit. Not proud.
Time to improve my listening game. Starting today.
Are you a good listener in everyday conversations?
Any tips for a girl who’s trying to reform her listening skills?
Thank you so much for following along.
Want Write 31 Days posts in your inbox? It’s not too late, sign up here.
Hello, I'm Kristen.
As a personal stylist,