Learning To Listen

WARNING: Emotional Post!

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It’s funny sitting in a crowded airport terminal and watching all the people completely absorbed in their cell phones. Do people talk to one another anymore? You over hear bits and pieces of their lives, as they answer calls, have muffled conversations with traveling companions, and so on. One of my favorite pastimes is to try and complete those stories.

I am a people watcher.

The one sticking out for me today is a young woman on her way to ‘begin’ her life. She is trying to build her brand as a social media marketing advisor, by being as colorful as possible. She has on the most mismatched outfit I have ever seen, in every color combination you can imagine. She wants to be noticed, and in this crowded terminal, she is searching for something. Of course that caught my attention, so she became my ‘people watching’ subject. I am silently chuckling, as she strikes up conversation after conversation, with anyone she can. Reminds me of someone. Tee Hee. The bad thing is, most people are getting up and finding a new seat, she seems to be trying too hard. I heard her tell someone she came to the airport five hours early! She felt there could be someone she needed to meet along her journey, and didn’t want to miss them. I admire her free spirit, and the fact that she seems to understand we need to put our phones down once in a while, and talk to one another. I guess you have to find that balance. Some people just want to be left alone, others will open up and tell you their life stories; by the time you part to go on your separate ways, you feel as if you have made a small difference in their lives. I am learning to find that balance and develop my listening skills.

Listen, Really Listen!

As many know, I have been deeply affected by an epidemic in this day and age. Depression, anxiety, drug and opioid use, so, so many burdens that people are having to deal with, and most are stuffers like me, out there trying to keep it together, keeping up appearances on the outside, and silently dying inside. Maybe if we talked to one another more. Give people the chance to release some of those burdens, without judgement. Just listen. When someone opens up to me, my hope is, if they are having a bad day, maybe just by listening, really listening, I can make a small difference. You never really know what someone is going through. Your smile could be the difference they need, the reason they decide to live to battle another day, the reason they don’t get high, the reason they decide not to rob, or steal to pay for that fix, the reason they decide to seek help, walk into church or AA, or rehab. You just never know.

WE RISE BY LIFTING OTHERS!

Anthony ‘Pocket Rocket’ Stanley 2/14/1987 – 10/17/2017

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