Learning to listen

   These days people are busy with their own lives and problems so it makes it hard for an individual person to stop, listen, and help another person with her problems.

   So what happens when you lose the ability to talk over others and are forced to focus on listening rather than talking? You learn the real value of being able to help others and put them before yourself.

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   Learning to listen was a lesson I never expected to learn, especially because I love to talk. Before I lost my ability to talk I thought that I was listening to others but when you can’t talk, all you can do is listen. It made me realize that I wasn’t really listening; I was just skimming over what everyone else had to say while my own thoughts on how to respond were dominating inside my head.

   My version of listening wasn’t listening at all, it was all thinking around myself. There’s no value in the conversation and there’s no helping the other person if you aren’t hearing what the other person has to say.

  In my own life, when friends approached me before I lost my voice I thought that I was helping them to my best ability, but after learning that I haven’t been listening I know now that I can help them to my true ability. When a friend approached me about one of her major problems I figured out the key to really listening.

 In order to really listen to the other person, the thoughts in your own head need to shut off. Once your own thoughts stop, you can focus outside yourself and on the other person and absorb what she is trying to communicate to you. If a friend is coming to me for help, she has respect for me and I owe her the same respect to really hear what she is saying.

  When you can go outside your own head to help others, that’s when you’re really listening.

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