Those moments when you sense that you no longer need to explain yourself?
Those moments when the other person summarizes or links to what you said with perfect words? And you just resonate?
We yearn for those moments, don’t we?
And those moments seem to have become rare in our lives. Everyone is so focused on whatever they are doing.
Everyone is so busy. Always busy. And stressed.
Why? What for?
I would argue that those people might just be on some auto-pilot.
They are used to their circumstances, to their daily routines, to their stress. Maybe they think they even need it to have that type of energy to survive the day at the office. I don’t know.
I do know though, that it can be the case that I am on auto-pilot, too sometimes. And do you know what?
It makes me sad. Why live a life where every day seems to be the same, although it is absolutely not?
Yesterday is gone. Today can’t be like yesterday. Today is Friday, January 30th, 2015. It’s never going to come back. Nobody can’t rewind time, as technical our world is with all these gadgets around us.
So, why not live in the present moment and connect with the people around you? And with your environment?
Once you do that, everything changes.
And that for me is linked to one of our biggest desires. To feel understood.
If the person listening to you, is not present with you in that moment, he won’t be able to pay full attention to what you are saying. Not to mention the non-verbal communication part of this conversation.
He won’t be able to properly respond. You probably then won’t fully resonate with what he said.
Maybe the conversation level stays really shallow. And that’s okay. We all love to talk about the crappy weather during winter times, don’t we?
But maybe it is not okay in those moments when you really want to get a point across. Or you want to have someone else’s opinion. Or you are looking for help.
Do you then dare to tell that person: “Hey, are you listening to me?” I know, I don’t. Or very rarely.
So, I guess what I am trying to say here:
If you want to feel understood and have a “real” conversation in the here and now although the other person seems to be distracted, you have three options:
- You wait for the right moment to come along. Which could be…never.
- You tell them that they should listen to you because you have something important to say/ask… – This works in rare cases though, at least to my experience. The other person might feel somewhat confronted and could then fall into a defending mode.
- You tell them that you sense that they are not fully present with you. And you ask them what’s on their mind. This usually gets people’s attention, because you focus on them with a genuine curiosity. When you listen to them and address their situation, they will likely listen to you more closely. They’ll pay attention. When its “your turn” to get heard, be open and genuine.
I usually apply the first or the last option. Which are in complete opposite of each other. And from my personal experience the third option is the one most worthwhile. This is also why I have been moving to the third option over the last years. I get so much more out of it when I am present and genuinely curious in the other person. Plus, I get the “benefit” of being heard and feel understood. And I simply love that feeling.
What do you do to feel understood? Do you find yourself in similar situations to what I described? Share with us a story in the comments below! Would love to your hear your take on this!