(This post was written in response to the Blogging 101 assignment to write a post that builds on one of the comments you left yesterday. Don’t forget to link to the other blog!)
Some random, rambling thoughts came to my mind when I read a blog post yesterday titled “Shut Up and Listen” on the blog named Away from the Noise. It was the title that caught my attention and stopped me in my tracks so I could read the entire post.
The writer’s first sentence says, “Have you noticed in conversations sometimes that some people are not really there? They are physically of course, but not emotionally.” Well, yes, actually I have noticed that, and I think it is a very rude and thoughtless way to treat someone who is trying to connect with you. Think about it. Have you ever been sitting or standing next to someone who is there, right in front of you physically, but so far away mentally and emotionally that they might as well be in Outer Mongolia, even though you are both standing on a street corner in Cleveland, Ohio or sitting on the patio in your neighbor’s back yard? Sound familiar? How does it make you feel to be treated that way? Like you don’t matter to the other person? Like they really aren’t hearing a word you are saying? Like you aren’t important?
One of the greatest gifts you can give to another person is to be fully present when you are physically in their presence. Fully present means you can’t just be physically present. After all, how much effort does it take to be physically present?” If you are standing next to someone who is talking to you, then you are already physically present, but the really important thing is to be fully present. Just being physically present simply doesn’t cut it. If you are standing next to someone who is talking to you, then you are already physically present, but the really important thing is to be fully present. Just being physically present simply doesn’t cut it. It just isn’t enough. Look at the person standing in front of you; listen carefully to what they have to say, and then respond thoughtfully. Actually engage them in conversation and let them know that they matter to you. That’s a gift, and it’s the best gift you can give to another person. If you can’t give them that, you’re not really connecting with them, and you truly might as well be in Outer Mongolia. That’s what I think about those kind of conversations.
How about you? What do you think? If this topic strikes a chord with you, check out Away from the Noise and join the conversation.
Thanks for listening.
Skip aka Carolyn
3 Replies to “The GIFT of being “present””
I think the art of conversation has been lost in our society. People no longer listen to understand, they are too busy waiting for the person speaking to stop so they can talk themselves. They are listening to respond. And now with social media, everyone is full of opinions non-stop and they don’t mind spouting them, even when it isn’t necessary or appropriate.
You make a good point. Listening attentively is a lost skill.