In my argumentation class we have been dissecting what it means to listen. We find that we only hear what we want to hear and shut everything else out, making it difficult to be open to new ideas or even gain new information. It is politeness. I began thinking about how well I listen and I instantly came to the conclusion that I need some work, I’m aware.
I’ve learned there are times when everyone can be a narcissistic listener. Only hearing things that apply to you or just not caring enough to hear what someone else is telling you but waiting to be able to talk about yourself again, it happens. I am guilty of this. For most people unfortunately, it is unintentional. There are times that we just zone out while others are talking and insert the occasional head nod, there are other times where we don’t listen at all. I recognize and feel bad after I realize it. Depending on who I’m with, I come out and say “I’m sorry, I was not listening at all can you repeat that?” But where is the cut off line? Who can we admit that to and who do we have to hide it from?
I, like most people, find talking about myself to be easy. (Who knows you better than you?) This is a narcissistic thing to say, but it is what we think to be a smaller form of conversation. Going back and forth talking about ourselves. Of course it’s okay to do so. But I have never thought about how much we actually communicate like that. Have you ever thought to stop and actually take in everything someone is saying? Ask them more about it. Can you imagine what could possibly be learned from fully listening to what others had to say all the time?
From this one fifty minute class I had this week, I have already been challenging myself to focus more on others. I want to focus on really listening to someone instead of just hearing them. Take in everything people are saying (whether you agree or not). I have learned the most from teaching children and being around people who are older than me. Not only can you think about the innocence and expand your mind from children, but you can get some great advice from those older than you.
Throughout college or just in your 20’s in general, there are times where you feel like you’re falling behind from everyone else and nothing is working. Everyone has those times. I have definitely been feeling that way lately. Over the past couple of days I have realized how important it is to step back and reflect every once in a while.
I remind myself that whatever troubles I may have now can be fixed and won’t matter in a couple years or even weeks. I am a very impatient person, so I want any trouble I may have to be fixed as soon as possible. That can’t always happen. Some things take time and in time it won’t matter what everyone else is doing. There comes a time where you have to become a little self centered and worry about what you want, need, and where you want to be. Others successes and failures won’t affect you in the future. I also can be a competitive person. I never feel the need to win but to more so be lined up and running at pace with everyone else. The only person anyone should compete with is themselves to become a better version of themselves.
So maybe there are a couple things that aren’t going right now. I mean, no one is perfect right? Maybe your car broke down or you are trying to land a solid job, but there are things that can balance out that negativity. I always try to see the more positive side of things (which may keep me from going crazy sometimes), and it helps for sure. Find what relaxes you, have a vent session with someone you feel comfortable talking to (who knows, they may need to vent too), but most importantly think logically about how you can fix any problems you may have in a effective way. It never hurts to ask for help.
If you can’t keep going at speed, pump the breaks and think how to proceed.
On Sunday September 10th, 2017 I put in a work order to get a towel rack fixed that was falling out of the wall. Thinking nothing of it, I thought someone would come in, patch it up and leave. Unfortunately it was a little more serious than he thought. Maintenance ended up taking the rack off the wall where about a three inch by 2 inch hole remained until the next day. While putting the towels on the other rack, I saw something in the wall. It looked like an older newspaper, I was curious.
In the wall was a copy of the Washington Post from August 9, 1970. In complete disbelief, I instantly opened it up and started looking through it. The 3 sections that I had were Style, People, and Book World. The simplicity of the paper, from the font to the layout to the picture quality is completely different from what we see the Washington Post or any newspaper in general to be. This paper was much easier on the eyes and more pleasing to look through.
Thinking about it, the technology we have now makes it so we do not have to even think about purchasing a physical paper. It was much more common back then to get your paper delivered to your house everyday. There were no smart phones, tablets, or computers that could instantly give up to minute news with the press of a button. While the idea of saving paper and saving the trees is important to society today, the history that can be in your hands from a physical newspaper is different than keeping a bookmark on your computer. Whether it be within the last ten (or forty seven years in this case) this find really made me realize how much not only news publishing but how we receive information has changed.