It's ironic that my blogs about listening aren't very popular. People don't want to listen to what I have to say about listening. The truth is that most people aren't good listeners. We're too busy wanting to talk, thinking about what we're going to say. It's exactly why we're bad with names. We aren't listening. Before I lose you, let me ask you a couple questions:
Do you listen to other people's stories? Do you respond to those stories and experiences with your own, or do you ask questions that engage more conversation?
Are you bad with names? Be honest. Can you remember someone's name 5 minutes after hearing it? No? It's because you're not listening. You're only hearing. Huge difference.
The truth of the matter is if you're bad with names then you're not a good listener. Period. And if you disagree with me then you simply don't care that you're not a good listener. You're the talker. You're the story-teller, not the engager.
I'm the story-teller. I'm not great at engaging or remember names. I get more satisfaction out of talking of my experiences than listening to yours.
And that's where I fail.
Listening, engaging others in conversation, remembering their names, complimenting and inquiring are some of the most beneficial gestures we can offer. Beneficial to ourselves.
And if you don't believe me, then once again, you don't care that you're not a good listener. You're more interested in your story and your experiences than those of others.
Try it. Give it a shot. Your story isn't that important. Most people aren't listeners, which should tell you how insignificant your experiences and stories really are.
They don't care about what you have to say. They care about talking. And if you want to be special, if you want people to enjoy you and appreciate you, then be the listener.
Listening makes others feel good about themselves. And if you can make others feel good then you become important.
I don't want to be a talker. I want to be important.