Connecting local responses around the world
Good morning! I've been invited to share this blog post on listening, so here it is! I hope you enjoy it! I've also been asked by our dear colleague Rituu how I have used listening in my work. As someone dedicated to lifting up other people's stories, listening is absolutely core to my work. My intention is not just to listen for the facts, but the essence, the energy and the possibility in a person's story. I hope to share more about this in a coming blog post. In the meantime, be well! Warm regards, Michelle
Trying to listen well — like striving to live healthy — can easily erode into a guilt-heavy, anxiety-stabbed experience.
What would it take to rediscover and soak in the fun, wonder and even pure selfishness of it?
I have feeling-thick memories of joining conversations among parents, older siblings, neighbours, where I was the child listener. Their murmuring for hours, their words and stories soaked into me like warm honey into bread.
Whether I was just a strange child or my circles had all manner of marvellous things to say or I’d stumbled upon some wonderful gift of life without knowing it, I relished those times of listening as much — if in different ways — as hours of soaking in the river on hot days.
That childlike joy in listening has grown into something different over the decades. While I still like to listen, sometimes it’s more of an effort than I would like it to be. There is so much to distract.
I am not naïve enough to think that discovering that exact same joy can or even should be the Holy Grail.
I am a different person. I’ve walked a long and often piercing road.
But I do think that pausing to reflect on those childhood experiences can at the very least offer a bit of encouragement. Not lessons. Not techniques. Just encouragement.
Here are three encouragements coming up for me now:
Okay, enough talking. I’m off to listen.
This blog was originally posted to www.axiomnews.com.