Life's most successful people have numerous and quite often, invariable qualities. On the same note, life's most respected people have this one very important quality that should never be taken for granted: The ability to keep your mouth shut and your ears open.
Listening is important to many because it allows an individual to hear something that they may not already know, that they could build upon within their mind after hearing it. Take any of the most memorable speeches ever made within your life and think about someone who was deaf and could not hear that. Believe it or not, what about those who were NOT deaf but chose to speak all the way through - what opportunity did they miss?
There are some times in life where no one should speak and simply pay respect to the speaker, e.g. a funeral, wedding, birthday etc. What if this was everything? What if we treated every conversation with the same amount of importance and due respect that the speaker deserves?
I'm often baffled by those who frame me as rude or unapproachable because I don't often start conversational chat, because I am often too busy trying to listen. Of course a room full of conversations is better than silence, however, in a room full of conversation there will always be a few who choose to stay silent, and often they are the ones with the most to share.
One of my favourite quotes from Einstein reflects the nature of and competent features explicitly expressed in one's respect for another individual's presence.
I often see people who just can't comprehend listening, and just don't ever close their mouth. Ironically, these are the people who often don't have the most intelligent things to share, just waffle. However, I will never turn down an opportunity to listen to someone if they will give me value through the respect of my ears and mind accepting what they have to share with me.
" The consequence of not listening may result in either a failed message or a missed opportunity. Either way, how will you know what outcome it was if you didn't listen? " - TR
Life's best teaching's are taught when the listener (i.e. student) is immune to the missed opportunity of listening. When you have a good teacher, they will teach you something, and when you have a teacher who is willing to listen to you, then you will have a life lesson.
I strongly believe that listeners are the most successful people in the world. Being around old people, I have come to the findings that they all have things to share, and I have learnt more from old people and their 'back in the day' stories than I will ever learn from anyone else.
I recently asked an 87-year-old about this and they responded "People will talk for the majority of their lives, but those are the ones who just never succeed in the mouths of others ... And others will just talk complete nonsense about them because of it".
Things are often said at the wrong time and then the listener ends up shutting off for the remainder of the conversation. The brilliance of silence comes about when the speaker is able to remain quiet and dictate the conversation on their own terms, still making the listener feel comfortable.
Timing can also play an advantageous part in a conversation, as individuals need to be aware and receptive of what could be said and when it could be said - by either party.
In summary, we need to become more accepting of listeners and the contribution that they play in our world. Whether it is an entrepreneur like Elon Musk, Richard Branson, Jack Delosa or Jack Ma; they all see the value in listening, and that is one of the qualities that they have endured while rising upwards in the perspectives of speakers around them.
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