Are you listening?

Sometimes people don’t listen to you. It could be because they don’t want to, perhaps they are not ready for grasping what you have to say. Or it could be they can’t; meaning, something is preventing them from listening and understanding at this point in time. They can be distracted or simply their mental capability is not helping them. And so the question is not are they hearing you, but are they listening to what you are saying? Are they paying attention to the meaning behind the words. Are you listening! Truly listening! Ask yourself. 

You notice in conversations between two people, there is always someone that doesn’t stop talking. The other person may talk but seems to be more of the listener. A good listener will allow the other person to talk and express themselves. A good listener will not interrupt the other person when talking just to make their own point. A good listener will in fact be listening to what is being said. And will not be too busy preparing a response in their mind to answer or make a comment. A good listener will think before the reply. Most likely there will be a pause, giving enough time to digest what is being said. That is what good listeners generally do.

Some of the causes that may hinder someone from listening to you may in fact have nothing to do with you. It can all be factors that affects the listener’s ability to take in the words. If they are stuck in a bubble that they created for themselves, no matter how simple your words may be, they just don’t get it. No matter how much you pour your heart out begging them to listen to you and understand you. They just won’t. They are not ready to understand you if ever. They are not willing to let go of their own opinions and ideals. So even if you are making a lot of sense. It still won’t register. It’s like talking to a wall. You will never get the response you are hoping for.

It is very difficult to deal with people who won’t listen. Whether it be for their own interest or simply to understand you and where you are coming from. You can explain and elaborate till you are blue in the face. Still. Nothing. Nada. Makes you wanna say: hello anybody there?!?  It’s frustrating.

In relationships, you always need both parties to listen to each other, or problems will occur. No doubt about it. And if you manage to get by for a while with one side not listening, eventually the other side will be fed up. Because they can only carry on being ignored for so long. In the end, when you feel that you are not getting the respect you deserve and when you have tried several times to be understood, you will get tired of it. Some don’t wait too long until they reach this point. But some, can take them years. The end result will be the same. The person will end up walking away from those who don’t want to listen. Who wants to be talking to a wall all the times and not getting a reply back?  Who?!

This goes for all kinds of relationships. It applies to parents and their children. It applies to couples. It applies to friendships. And it applies to relationships with your boss, colleagues and neighbors.

Your tolerance will vary depending on how important the relation is to you. It’s much harder to walk away from your family than it is from your colleague for example. The level of emotions involved play an important part on how much you try to make the person listen to you. But here is the thing; you can only try, but you can’t make anyone do anything. You cannot control what they do. Whether they understand you or choose to continue to ignore what you are saying, is up to them. They justify to themselves why they behave this way. And in most circumstances they are so wrapped up in themselves and they don’t even see that they are doing you wrong. As far as they are concerned, you are the one in the wrong. As for themselves, they are very righteous.

That’s how people behave when they are not able to listen to you. It will always be your fault. This is when you have to take a stand and do right by yourself. Until when you will allow this? How much more will you give of yourself and with no hope that one day you will be understood.

And so you come at one of those cross roads once again. And the decision lies within your hands. Do you continue being around people who refuse to listen to you and respect you for the person you are? Or do you say enough is enough and you walk away to save yourself?  The choices are tough. But one day you may have to make the tough choice. Then again, who’s listening anyway?!


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