Listen up…


How often do we really look?
How often do we really listen?

I try to do both.  But it does not always jive that way.


Take for instance this evening.  The grandkids were coming over to our house, and I went to pick up pizzas.  (Sidebar:  If it sounds like I pick up a lot of pizzas, I think it is because I pick up a lot of pizzas.  And then eat a lot of pizzas.)

Anyway, someone at the pizza place was telling me about some troubles they had recently experienced.  I was only hearing about half of what they were saying.  It wasn’t because I don’t care, or wasn’t interested.  On the contrary, the exact opposite it true.  I was very worried about the situation, once I got up to snuff.

But when it first crossed my ears… I was shuffling through my billfold, deciding what to pay with.  ….”The Monopoly money I have with me is probably not an option.  Ooohhhh.  But look how pretty those $500 bills are…  all orange-ish.  Monopoly money is so colorful.  I wonder why our real money can’t be that colorful.  Which reminds me of the time we were at Ft. Sumter with Haylee and Levi, talking about Confederate money.  Oh I miss Charleston, sometimes, and all my friends down there.  I just saw a photo of Wendy…. … blah, blah, blah-dee-blah.”

This endless stream of thoughts pulsed through my head, and I was not being present to listen.

Shame on me.

Our human interactions.   You know. As we move through each day…  and come in contact with people of all walks, and shapes, and sizes… we should take the time to realize that each connection counts.

Every moment of our life, is truly a precious thing.  And with that… each and every interaction we have with another human is truly unique. We all have the  ability to connect with others.  Distinctly.

And I believe this can be world-changing.  I do.  Bill Nye once said “Everyone you will ever meet knows something you don’t.”

Just imagine the possibilities.  Every minute we have here is somehow important.  It has potential in unthinkable ways.  When we can deeply understand that….  well….. it is transforming.   And during part of that time, we are interacting with others.  WE have endless opportunities to learn and grow from this.  Somehow.  Someway.  We hear. We see.  There are many gifts there.

As a result, of being aware and grateful for these moments, we potentially can create an impact of positive energy.  And that kindness, no doubt, with have a ripple effect which can reach further than we can ever know.

Listening is one of the greatest gifts we can give to another.  And receiving that in return, is a gift too.

To see and listen.  In all we do.
And recognize the many gifts all around us.

Good humans.  Good.

“Listen with the intent to understand, not the intent to reply.”  — Stephen Covey

“The most basic of all human needs is the need to understand and be understood. The best way to understand people is to listen to them.”   ― Ralph G. Nichols