Updated: Jan 20
Description: "What did you say?" Huh?" Sound familiar? There's nothing more frustrating than not being heard and nothing more gratifying than having someone show they are really listening. Create belonging by building stronger relationships when you hone your listening skills this week.
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Transcription: Hi and welcome to episode four of Self-Care for Educators. I'm your host, Tina Boogren. In this episode, we're going to explore the theme of listening. What's that? Listening. ... I couldn't resist.
And, I'm going to offer up some strategies and ways for you to play with this idea this week. So, in this age of technology and communication via digital devices, using texts and emojis and Bitmojis ... I fear that we're starting to lose the art of listening. I love that phrase, listening like heaven. Consider the last time that you felt really, truly heard. What a gift that is, right? Hence that phrase listening like heaven. When someone puts their technology away, looks you in the eye, leans in, and nods and smiles instead of interrupting ... Oh, man, that makes you feel as if you are the most important person in the world.
And that, that is such an incredible gift. I love this quote from Rachel Naomi Rehmann. She says, "the most basic and powerful way to connect to another person is to listen. Just listen. Perhaps the most important thing we can give each other is our attention." In fact, I'm going to read that again because I love it so much. And I know when we're listening to podcasts, we sometimes miss things, and I don't want you to miss this. This is so juicy. "The most basic and powerful way to connect to another person is to listen. Just listen. Perhaps the most important thing we ever give each other is our attention." It's that simple and eloquent and beautiful.
I'm not perfect at this, but ... I work really hard, especially in recent years, here that when I'm out with family or friends, I really try to put my phone away and I want, oh so much, to provide that gift of being a really good listener, particularly when I have the opportunity to be face-to-face with someone. I try so hard to listen without interrupting with my own stories. And that's a tough one for me ... try to ask thoughtful questions. I try to express gratitude for what someone shared with me, especially if it's something personal or vulnerable. And because of that, my relationships feels stronger than they ever have before.
That's level three of Maslow, right? Relationships that creating that sense of belonging. Ah, so powerful. And then, one of the most profound ways that we can actually improve our relationships is through the very simple act of listening. So, that's what I want you to experiment with this week. I'm going to keep it simple. I'm going to keep your invitation to two words. Here's the two words:
When you are engaged in conversations, make it your mission to start by just listening ... that it's not about putting your own story in. It's not about jumping to the next response ... that it's not about trying to top each other ... that it's truly just listening. Just listening. It's that hard and that easy. Right? So, think about what does that look like? I already gave you some ways that I think about providing this gift: of thinking about where your technology is when you're having a conversation ... just eye contact ... who are you ... able to hold off and really provide that, that space for someone else to talk before you put your own story in. Do you ask a follow up question before you start sharing your own ideas? All of that, that kind of conversational dance is really something that we have to work on. And I think we have to kind of get back to the art of conversation these days, because like I said, so much of our conversation is happening via writing, right?
Via text, via email ... that, that art of sitting down and really providing that gift of being fully present with someone holding space for someone ... that's kind of become a lost skill. So, let's bring that back and play with that this week. I think actually by doing that, you are also tapping into last week's theme of altruism because that's truly an act of kindness. And I think you're going to feel really grateful for the end result of providing that gift, which is going to tap us back into week two theme of gratitude. So enjoy, I think that this, this invitation is kind of a calm and soft and peaceful way to move throughout your week.
As always a huge thank you to Brooke for making this happen. Thank you to Marzano Resources and Solution Tree for this job that I get to do. Thank you to my Self-Care Squad for being so bad-ass and for being part of this community.
Ff you could ... it would mean the world to me if you could like and review and subscribe to the podcast. Oh, that would be incredible. Thank you.