When you're talking with another person, do you sometimes find yourself nodding in agreement with them only to find yourself wondering what they meant or giving advice that leaves them wondering what you meant?
In reality, you often don't know exactly what someone means because what lies behind what they say comes from their life experiences and influences that you know nothing about. When we listen to another person, we tend to listen through our own filters, our own life experiences. Have you ever had someone finish a sentence for you and they were totally off base? They were listening and responding through their own filters.
The one thing we can be certain about is that someone else's life experiences are going to be completely different from your own.
When we're in conversation with someone, mindful listening becomes very important. That means listening fully without formulating a response while the other is still talking. This can be a challenge if the other person's point of view is different from yours, but it can also be true when having a heartfelt talk with a friend or loved one.
With mindful listening, you can learn where you might need more information to understand fully what's being said. You can be curious and ask for clarification rather than being quick to respond.
Being curious is a wonderful state of being. It benefits us in many ways, but especially when in conversation. Asking "Can you tell me more" or "Can you tell me what you mean by that, I'm not clear" are ways of showing you care about the other person, that you value what that person is saying, and it let's them know that they have been heard. Being curious about what another person is sharing with you has the potential of being even more meaningful than any response or advice.
Curiosity can lead to unimagined depths of understanding resulting in meaningful conversations and relationships.
In love and light,
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