Listening may seem simple, but most of the time we are only hearing - waiting to respond, waiting to give advice or opinion, or feeling triggered and unable to stay in the present moment. Learning to truly listen and not just hear, to others and to ourselves, can be a powerful and meaningful form of connection and communication that is worth exploring.
(photo by Lucas Boekhout)
There are many ways to listen and things to listen to...listen to music, listen to the news, listen to your heart, listen to reason, listen to a friend tell you their problems, listen to your intuition. Let's look at some of the different ways we listen, how we might be responding, and whether we're aware or not of our responses.
When we are listening to something like the news, a class, a webinar, or other information that is being relayed to us, we may find ourselves hearing it in certain ways, trusting it's validity or not, dissecting it for believability, determining it's impact on our lives, it's impact on other people's lives, considering whether or not it deserves our attention at all. We tend to listen to this kind of communication from our thinking mind, sometimes with our ego mind, from which we attempt to sort out what we think about the information pulling (consciously or unconsciously) from our past experiences and our thought knowledge. Sometimes we listen with our intuitive sense or our gut feeling and either trust it or don't trust it depending on what we decide. This kind of listening to information can be interesting to experiment with, to see if we use our thinking/ego mind more or if we determine the "truth" of information through our intuitive/gut voice more. We all have the ability to use both, some of us are more tuned in to our intuitive guidance, and some of us rely more heavily on the intellectual part of us. Both have their place and usefulness and taking time to be present and notice which one is being used can give us some insight into how we listen and then process information we receive.