Yesterday, I had the privilege of presenting virtually at The Nassau Club of Princeton for their lunchtime speaker series. After the talk, I received a text from one of the participants who happens to live in “an old folks home” (her words, not mine) on the coast of California. We talked about finding ways to be happy during the pandemic and she stated, “What I find is most in short supply, however, are listeners.” I immediately agreed with her—pandemic or not. Most of us could benefit from improving our listening skills.
But I was headed to The Red Cross to donate plasma, so I scurried off. It wasn’t until I was hooked up to the machine listening to the technician tell me her whole life story that I remembered my new friend’s impactful words, so I settled in and simple listened with my whole being. I listened to her story that was filled with sadness and heartache, but also joy and the promise of good things to come. For one hour, I actively listened and it was my pleasure to do so.
Sadly, I’m not always the best listener, but I’m so grateful this woman shared these poignant words with me yesterday: “What I find is most in short supply, however, are listeners.” I hope this message hits home for you, too, today. Active listening is not a passive role and it’s needed now more than ever. Let’s spread the word. Really listening means someone is not only heard, but validated, and that’s powerful! It’s not about you or me. Let’s go! We got this!