Nobody Listens

Photo via StillSearc

People don’t listen. It’s true.

Sometimes it’s obvious. Their gaze drifts or their eyes glaze over. Though that’s not even a reliable indicator, since apparently the kids these days are training themselves to maintain eye contact while texting.

So unless you put them on the spot and quiz them on what you just said, you may never know whether they actually heard you or not.

If you want a vivid illustration of how many people don’t listen, look around you at the gym. Especially in an organized class. Pilates is a good one, because it involves a lot of complex moves that need to be explained by the instructor. There you can see the actual physical manifestation of people not listening.

Their legs are down when the instructor says up. Heads are raised when they’re supposed to be planted on the mat. They’re facing left when they’re clearly told right.

I’m hyper-aware of this as I’m always silently judging other people’s form anyway. But check it out yourself sometime.

Or if you have trouble listening, take a class like this. It’s a full hour or more of giving yourself over to someone else. Like a game of Simon Says, only everything that’s said is coming from Simon. So there’s no guesswork, no need for hesitation.

Just immerse yourself in the experience. Concentrate on actively listening to the exclusion of all other thoughts. And do everything you’re told.

You may even find it therapeutic. Relax, and let someone else take over for a change.