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,
As inevitable as change is in our lives, it can still be hard to accept. When I think of all the ways life has changed over past few decades, I start to see that for as much of a pain as change can be sometimes, humans are adaptable and over time we can even forget that things had been different. Seat belts, computers, turning right on a red light - we take these for granted now and have even come to enjoy and appreciate them, but for many of us they took some getting used to.
When you wake up in the morning, you're not the same person you were when you went to bed the night before. Cells renew, your brain had a chance to relax and renew, your body detoxed. Change to your body occurred while you slept.
Each new day brings change. You learn new things through conversations, observation or through your own exploration and experimentation.
You're not the same person from one day to the next mentally or physically - you're always changing.
So if we're changing internally and the world around us is changing, it would make sense that our expectations for ourselves would have to change as well. The question is, do you see change from a place of fear and rigidity or can you view it from the perspective of opportunity and flow?
How you accept change, or don't, can be a function of your thoughts and beliefs. Change is a part of life and seeing it as an opportunity to explore new ways of being moves us away from suffering and toward the wonder of life itself.
All around us life is in constant motion, always changing, never staying the same. Sometimes we like it and sometimes we don't, but we always have a choice as to how we want to be with it.
In love and light,
How are you in this moment? Perhaps you are experiencing a wonderful moment and if that's true for you, I hope you are taking the opportunity to be fully present to it. Perhaps, though, you are feeling under the weather, sad, or maybe experiencing discomfort physically or emotionally. Are you holding yourself in love and surrendering to the experience, reaping what has been brought to you to be known? I think too often we want to feel good because that's how we think we're suppose to show up in life - feeling positive and upbeat, shying away from and fighting those low moments. We see feeling down as negative.
Personally I like to look at low moments as a time when we are most ripe for personal growth. We don't have to like it, but for me it's important to acknowledge those moments and see what they're telling me. Sometimes I'm totally surprised at the wisdom that comes from an honest conversation with my discomfort.
If you're interested, try this: Sit quietly and ask your discomfort "what do you want me to know?" Be open to hearing the truth. Without arguing, question what shows up, be curious. If you have the intention of finding the truth to your sadness or discomfort, wisdom will find its way to you.
I would also offer that being in the moment with happiness is equally as valuable. What brought you to that place? Acknowledging these moments allows for gratitude and that's a gift that keeps on giving!
Life is full of ups and downs, we never really know what's going to show up at our doorstep. Yet all the while, if we pay attention, we can use each moment to shift and evolve, learning new things about ourselves and letting go of old beliefs and patterns.
Being in the moment is a precious gift because awareness of each moment is living life to its fullest.
In love and light,