Listen carefully

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I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen.

Ernest Hemingway

Reading news feeds over the past couple of days reveals that on a global level we are not using our ability to listen to one another. There is a constant cacophony of voices aggressively demanding to be heard. Political rhetoric is ramping up, the anxiety of re-opening and returning to school and work is significantly heightened, and people everywhere seem to be shouting at each other.

Listening is a skill that we have to work at and today it seems to be at risk of becoming lost as we collectively demand that others meet our needs. Stepping back, it seems nonsensical that politicians have to resort to shaming us into following public health orders in an effort to keep us safe. Public health doctors who are working tirelessly on our communal behalf, are now having to hire security as their lives are being threatened.

I wonder what it will take for us to learn to listen to one another. It seems that there is no time but the present for humans to work at this particular life skill.

Take the time today to notice the simple task of listening. Are the people in your world hearing your voice? Are you reciprocating and hearing the voices of others before reacting and responding to them? We are constantly and consistently being told to follow some basic strategies to move through this pandemic in the safest possible way.

Our future outcomes seem to depend on a simple yet difficult to achieve skill – listening to one another. Imagine what could happen if all of the people around us would actually take the time to truly listen to what is being shared about the need for everyone of us to follow some basic guidelines.

It is going to take a collective global effort of working together to move through this pandemic. That likely means setting aside some of our needs in order to keep others in our communities safe.

And it will start with all of us taking the time to listen to others around us about how to achieve this.

Stay healthy and safe!

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