Brenda’s Blog – June 4, 2019
“Why am I talking?”
I read of a therapist who patiently listened as a woman complained and complained and complained because no one listened to her. “No one really hears me.” The sessions continued and her discouragement at the lack of empathy on the part of others continued.
She sought a solution which he gave in one short word, “Wait!” “What do you mean by that,” she asked. “It is simple… when you see others are tuning you out and you feel others are not listening, say to yourself Wait which will spur you to ask “Why Am I Talking?”
Don’t you know people who overtalk? Haven’t you been the one who just can’t find the pause button? I painfully remember a time when I was under emotional pressure and attended a small church fellowship group. Because I was new they asked me to tell them about myself. I began and I just absolutely couldn’t stop. I knew I should, but couldn’t. How very much I needed this acronym.
Dad always encouraged us to develop listening skills. It is rare when someone does focus intently without using the other’s conversation to reload. We eagerly anticipate their halting so our thoughts can have air time. There is much to learn when we are actively listening to others.
Scripture tells us “Be still and know that I am God.” That quietness requires intentionality and practice. We live in a verbally-active culture which values talkers. Coming to a complete understanding of who He is and in turn, who we are demands silence. In prayer it is too easy to talk at God rather than sitting before Him. Even in devotion we must WAIT.
The article didn’t tell the outcome of the therapist’s sessions. We want to assume she took his counsel, learned to interact normally, and engaged happily. But we don’t know. I still talk too much; I still look for opportunities to share my most appropriate stories; and I feign interest too often, but I also make a strong effort to be truly interested in others and………wait.