Hearing vs. Listening
In a world full of noise and information, we have a lot to sort out. Opinions are thrown in an endless bombardment of words. Companies are trying to sell you something at every scroll. We have a lot to hear these days, but are we actually listening?
The dictionary defines hearing as “the act of perceiving sound,” and listening is defined by “something you consciously choose to do.”
I have found in numerous conversations, especially ones that contain controversial topics, that people tend to tune out what the other person is saying, especially if they have a differing opinion. No one is listening, but they have no issue shouting their personal truth over the other. Everyone else is wrong, and you yourself is in the right. And regardless of who you are, you are guilty of this–including and especially me.
We as a people have lost the ability to humble ourselves and admit that we might be in the wrong. We have lost the ability to truly listen to someone that has a differing opinion than us and not feel the need to point out their errors.
We have to learn to consciously choose to listen and not have to be right all the time. We have to learn to put our humanity first and love people whose truths are different than our own. We have to learn how to humble ourselves and cross the aisle because maybe, just maybe, someone who looks differently and talks differently than us may hold the solution to our problem.
True listening, dear friends, may be the answer to all of our predicaments. And as we listen, may it mold us into more kinder, more gracious, more compassionate, and more loving humans.
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