Empathy is the first step of true, real, and raw understanding.
This should be a practice by all, in any situation.
Whether it be a significant other. A friend or relative. Or simply, the cashier at the grocery store. The ability to hear with the intent to listen, not just respond, will set you apart from the majority.
Sharing your 'opinion' is really the lowest form of knowledge and comprehension. It requires no accountability or understanding. The highest form of knowledge is empathy. It requires us to suspend our egos and live in another persons world. Their shoes. Where they come from. It requires a profound purpose larger than one's SELF kind of understanding.
Just imagine a conversation with someone where they're ACTUALLY listening to you. Making YOU feel like the most important in the room. Making you feel validated. That you and your issues ACTUALLY matter.
Sounds pretty sweet doesn't it?
Ask yourself, "why is this a practice that may be neglected?
Here's the thing, if you want YOUR time valued, it STARTS with you. In those moments where you feel like you're struggling with being heard, maybe a "step back" is necessary for self examination. I can guarantee that you're most likely not practicing empathy at the level you think you are.
Put down the phone, pause the show, close your book, and LISTEN with the intent to learn.
Everyone has something to teach you.
**Read that last line again.**
- Coach Wolverine