The US election is over, and it’s been an interesting time. The people I know have had a wide variety of reactions to the outcome. And I have read a lot of nice philosophical perspectives on the outcome–which is how I tend to look at such matters 🙂
What struck me in all the discussions of people analyzing and discussing everything is this: People just want to be heard. Whether it’s voters who feel like “the other” party’s candidate is not listening, or friends and family who have thoughts and opinions about it all, we each want to feel like someone is listening. To be acknowledged is a universal desire.
Listening is something of a lost art, in my humble opinion 🙂 In our fast-paced lives with non-stop access to the world at large, many of us have lost the inclination and patience that is required to be a good listener. Not to mention that we are so full of information ourselves that we often don’t hear what the other person is saying, we don’t observe the non-verbal cues….because we are busy formulating our reply and our points to be made!
The Power of Listening
Whatever your position on the outcome of the election, you would do well to develop your capacity to listen. Being a good listener is a skill that serves you well in all aspects of life. And when the world at large is in seeming chaos, good listeners are vital to calm the troubled waters–or sound waves, as it were 🙂 Listening opens hearts and soothes egos and unites us.
Whatever is happening in the world at large, and regardless of what causes we might join or support, one of the best ways to effect change is by the simple act of listening–really listening–to those with whom you interact. I will grant you-it’s not easy to do with every one. That’s when you know you really need to do so.
There are a lot of books on the topic…here are two that are worth a read:
Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In
So get out there and bridge the gap…listen up!