How do you know when you are listening.
So the key element of being together and being close with people is based on recognizing that person and feeling them.
And feeling them can be a physical feeling and it can be physical inside of you. You actually feel that you actually sense that person’s feelings and you may not understand them but you feel a connection to them.
So listening is a very kinesthetic experience if you look at the nervous system itself. Of course listening starts with the ears but those nerves are connected to all the other nerves in the body.
So how do you know when you’re listening. When you’re really listening to someone.
It’s when you’re not feeling a sense of attack or reaction from your nervous system.
True listening happens when your nervous system is almost at a place of the receptive part of the nervous system and it’s also this place of openness. In reflexology or healing work when they reflex the nerves of the body there’s this zero point where you get no response from the nervous system.
It’s a place where almost anything can happen in the body at that point and the body comes in to balance. But it’s also a point where if the body had to work out what to do by itself, without the brain having to orchestrate it, or without the higher parts of the mind trying to figure out what to do, the body will start to come to homeostasis, start to find that balance.
True listening also has layers to it and true listening where you will be finding that deep connection with people is when you’re not really trying to think. You’re not trying to work it out. Your body is actually at a really peaceful state where you can start to experience the person almost as if they’re part of your body as well. As though you’re having an experience and you’re starting to experience that too so you can understand it.
In some of the teachings I talk about “feeling so that you can understand” and that’s also part of that nervous system response when you get to true listening where you start to actually experience the person and the mind is not trying to do its little dance but the body starts to actually feel what the person is experiencing and then naturally a response comes.
And that’s where empathy at its highest form can happen.
You can learn empathy. You can do skills such as this but in my experience through healing and dance, what happens is that listening happens quite organically and naturally from birth in our bodies.
What happens is that in our culture and in our education or perhaps in hurts that we’ve experienced and hold on to in our nervous system, in our emotional memory, those interfere with our natural ability to do that organically.
So think about that when you’re going through your day then, when are you truly listening?
And that’s the question I’ll leave you with. Just explore “oh am I reacting here and thinking and trying to make something of this?” or am I just experiencing what’s going on here or this person in front of me. “When am I listening?” “How do I know when I’m listening?”