Day 12: Listening is Kindness
“One of the most sincere forms of respect is actually listening to what another has to say.” -Bryant H. McGill
Listening with an open heart and mind is one of the kindest things we can do for ourselves and others. To be fully present with ourselves or with another person takes awareness, patience, and practice. When we are able to give our full attention to listening rather than speaking and offering advice, we will learn, understand and grow tremendously as human beings.
Kindness to Self:
Listening to yourself, listening to your gut or listening to your intuition are all the same. I love the following quote: “Your intuition is a muscle. To develop it, you must listen.” I can’t tell you how many times I have ignored my intuition and not listened to what I needed, but I can tell you that each time I did not listen I regretted it. Listening to our needs does take practice and discipline, but I do believe it is the kindest thing we can do.
Kindness to Others:
Fully listening to our children, spouse, friends and loved ones is a priceless gift. However, it is not always the easiest thing to do. I think in today’s world people have to try much harder to get our full attention. We now have to compete with the ever present smart phone. To give someone our complete attention when they speak is the truest form of kindness.
Kindness to Strangers:
Lately I have been practicing giving my full attention to strangers and it is amazing to see the positive reactions. I admittedly used to be very distracted and rarely gave the store clerk, waiter, car attendant or any stranger, my full attention when engaging with them. Now I make it a priority to listen fully. The interactions I have are so much more meaningful and it provides a sense of contentedness that is missing in our busy world.
Kindness to Our Planet:
Listening to the experts on climate change and really observing the changes that are taking place is the first step to making positive changes for our beloved home. Be the change you would like to see and continue to care for our planet.
Photo Courtesy of FreeImages.com/CherylEmpey