It For those of you that may be aware, I just returned from the Himalayan Institute, where I facilitated a training for children's yoga teachers to be for Yogachild. An awesome experience , but glad to be home with my ever-loving sidekick with four legs.
If you are anything like me, whenever you are able to experience a seminar, or are in learning/teaching mode, it gets the brain going, and also reiterates things you know but aren't always at the forefront-or things that are overlooked .
We teach "whole Body Listening" as part of our curriculum. (You may, or may not be saying wait-how is that possible, my ears are on my head?) But, I am hoping that you have an inkling of the actual meaning of the phrase. There are six ways to listen with your whole body....
1. Your Eyes, to look at the person, and REALLY SEE them
2. Your Heart, to EMPATHIZE with what they are saying
3. Your Body, to be STILL and hold the space
4. Your Ears to actually HEAR what the person is saying
5. Your Hands, to GESTURE that you hear them
6. Your Mind to really FOCUS on and process what is being said
You could also add your Mouth, to be quiet, while they say their words.
We all have an inherent need to be seen and heard. It validates to us that we matter, that others want to hear what we have to say. It feels good. It gives a sense of belonging.
Take that out into the world, and in this modern incarnation, it is not happening very often. Imagine going out to visit with an old friend. You are so excited, and have so much to say. When you come together, it doesn't go that way. Words are said, and while that is happening, there is not eye contact. You say something and the friend glosses right over, not acknowledging what you have to say. They are constantly on their phone, flipping through pictures, and social media. Simply put, It does not feel good, and yes it has actually happened to me- and it downright sucks! It made me want to scream "don't you hear me?"; and made me feel like I didn't matter-it hurt.
Perhaps, you finally get angry, or just shut down. And it seems to be more and more the norm. People will be in the same space, yet you wouldn't even know by the body language, the constant presence of the devices we all carry around, and the apparent lack of actual connection. It's kind of like the teller at the bank that asks how your day is going......it is just words without true connection most of the time. Just watch the people you observe out in public, it is epidemic. We are all guilty, I think, to some degree of empty "conversation" without connection.
Humans are social creatures. We thrive when we are in groups, especially of like-minded individuals. It supports our inner being, and having your words heard on a deeper level, activates those feel good hormones. The heart and mind connection is strengthened. Especially for the generation of children that are watching the behavior we adults emulate, we must make the effort to take the time to make your conversations meaningful. We are all busy, but the pause you take is pregnant with possibility to see each other, really see. To stop, be still, put down the cell and look into the eyes of the person that may really have something important to say or emotions to release, and hold space for their words. Focus on them, nothing else really matters in that moment. You might think that it is insignificant, but to the "other" it is monumental. Imagine a not being truly there for someone, and then them passing on. Being present for each other is a gift of shared experience. It will enrich your day to day relationships, and the more you do it, the more it will become your way of being.
To quote Baba Ram Dass-
"Be Here Now"
It's all you got.
My musings as I travel around the sun in this lifetime. I am fortunate beyond words to experience life as it comes to me. The people I meet, the experiences I have, all are my teachers. I write about nature, healing with the medicine that Panchamama offers us in the Wise Woman traditions, the connection between Mind, Body, Spirit, our children for they are the future, and how we can show them a better way through a reconnection to the Earth we all share.