So often we feel overwhelmed by our own problems that we never truly take the time to offer a hand to others who are going through the same thing. Humans have perfected the art of not caring. When humans have been gifted the opportunity to feel a wide range of emotions, we’ve crafted the art of shutting them out and replacing them with numbness. Too many times I’ve seen someone be casted away when they didn’t know how to express themselves and no one was around to notice. In a time where there’s war, bullying, reluctance to acceptance, stigma around mental illness, and hypocrites: be someone who chooses to listen.
I once heard someone explain what it’s like dealing with your own problems as opposed to helping someone else deal with their problems. When you yourself are in the endless cycle of analyzing every angle of your issue, it’s difficult to see the bigger picture. You might feel that you’re in a corn maze and can’t find your way out. When you let someone in and offer your troubles to them, they can act as the birds eye view and guide you to an exit in the maze.
Life has a funny way of bringing people to you throughout your life when you need them the most. You might hold the key to someone’s solution. Our experiences help to shape us into who we eventually become, but they also help to bring us closer to others. In the realm of psychology, it’s believed that we form a deeper connection with others when we are allowed to speak about ourselves. When we actively listen to others, we may find that we’re more alike than different.
But listening to others doesn’t always make the cut. Sometimes they might need your attention, your affection, your thoughts, or your advice. We give and take from each other. It’s an endless cycle where we have to find a balance or we end up empty if we lean too much one way or the other.
So, in the New Year, be someone who listens to others. Or be someone who listens to music. Or the sounds of nature. Or your own heartbeat. Whatever you listen to, take time to focus on that one thing in the moment. It’s often said that the first step to being interesting is to be interested. As years keep flying by, use that time to take advantage of the many gifts we’ve been offered in this world. Experience every sensation as you get the chance.