Sensei has always told me that I have two ears and only one mouth, so I should listen twice as much as I talk. I think he got that from someone else and he was mostly trying to get me to shut the hell up in karate class, a feat that is impressive, in and of itself. After all, getting me to be quiet is difficult on the best of days, even in controlled environments. But there’s something to be said for learning to be still and quiet. After all, those are important factors required for effective meditation. But even more importantly, they’re required for everyday life.
Being quiet allows others to speak and express themselves. by doing this, you can get to the root of the message that others are trying to impart. This usually doesn’t happen if one is flapping one’s jaws. This is a lesson I wish I had learned early on in my career. Maybe I would have learned more than I did or allowed others to have chances that were only prevented by the fact I didn’t listen as deeply as I should have. One will never know.
If you’re in a leadership role, being silent can allow your team to express themselves and provide insight without being clouded by your view. Time has proven that once a leader has spoken, their team will usually formulate their own opinion by what the leader has said. This is referred to as being “yes-men.” Allowing others to speak first will engender creativity, brain-storming and ACTUAL thought as opposed to blind agreeing. If you quiet your mind along with your voice, you have a better chance at finding peace and balance. It’ll also allow your thoughts to bring you to better and more positive conclusions and better outcomes.
In a world of constant stress and fast-moving lifestyles, learn to be still. It will help reduce that stress and slow down that lifestyle. That’s something everyone needs. And in doing so, one can begin to reduce the amount of suffering within one’s life, which is kind of my jam. And helping to eliminate one’s own suffering allows for one to help eliminate suffering in others. Kind of important if we expect any of that world peace stuff everyone keeps talking about. So, learn to listen. Learn to be still. Food for thought… ☯️