Without sounding too boastful, I would like to say that “listening” is one of the personal gifts that I have received. Also, listening works well, if you don’t want to talk too much yourself.
I am sort of an introvert-ish person. I say sort of, because I talk to people, I don’t have a problem with that. I talk well, mingle well, and can make people laugh and everything. But all the talk, is hardly ever about myself! I can’t share things about myself very easily. It is only with very few close friends and family that I can talk about things that matter to me. That too on rare occasions. That’s why this blog exists. It’s being able to say everything you want and yet not having to speak about it face-to-face to anyone!
On the other hand, I am a great listener. I almost always know the details of what’s happening in the life of others close to me. My friends find it easier to share their stories with me, for the reason that I listen and reciprocate well, making them feel better. For this same nature of mine, I usually end up with having talkative friends, because I prefer being at the other end, than theirs. Words just flow so easily from them and sometimes it leaves me longing to be like that. To be able to share freely and feel lighter at the end of a conversation.
Being a good listener can be overburdening at times too. When a friend of mine was going through a really bad time in her personal life and spoke to me hours over the phone, I used to be so upset about not being able to do anything. I kept feeling bad that she wasn’t trying out my suggestions and continued to suffer and complain. She called every few days and I would see no change. It was emotionally draining for me too. It was almost as if it was my own problem. BG used to talk to me, telling me that I can only offer suggestions, cannot impose it on someone. I knew that too. Yet, I let it upset me for a long time. Slowly over time, I learned how to be helpful and also disconnect, for my own well-being.
I do believe in the quote “We have two ears and one mouth, so we can listen more and talk less”. 🙂