To truly listen to someone we must be present – without distractions or interference in our heads.
Its estimated that the average human being has 10,000 thoughts per day. Real thinkers can have over 50,000 thoughts. That’s over 30 thoughts per minute…
Now that’s a lot of buzz, interference and distraction going on.
Here is a series of 3 experiments to try for yourself to see how present and focused your mind is. I believe that if we can listen to ourselves, then we can be a better listener for others.
At each level, be patient and try not to judge yourself. If your mind wanders simply start over.
Begin by taking a few deep breaths and take a moment to center yourself and be present with this moment. There is no rush.
Count from 1 to 50 in your head.
Notice how many times you had to start over…
Keep working on it!
Once you have this one down, move on to the next level.
Count from 50 back to 1. Notice that a little more concentration is needed here…
Once you can do this easily, move on to level 3.
This is a meditation practice that I learned during my yoga teacher training. With your eyes closed bring your attention to the inhales and exhales of your breath.
On each exhale, count from 50 backwards until you reach 20. After 20, count on every exhale AND inhale until you reach 1.
When you have reached this goal, your mind will be clear of interference.
.. And you will have learned a lot about patience, commitment and acceptance of yourself in the process.
Not only will you have learned to listen to yourself, but you will have begun to train your mind to come to a place of focus. Through focus we are able to quieten the mind and find peace. … and of course, become better listeners.